Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Festival of Quilts (2) - Sewing

After spending my first morning at Festival of Quilts doing some shopping, it was time for the first of my two workshops. I’ve been to Festival of Quilts before, but this was the first time I had booked any of the Academy Workshops. I chose two half day (3 hour) workshops – the Honeycomb Quilt (with Sue Bouchard) and Modern Log Cabin Variations (with Sarah Humphreys).

In the Honeycomb Quilt workshop, Sue showed how to cut hexagons using a diamond template and how to stitch them with triangles using no Y seams. We were sent a class supply list which included yardage and the option to order a kit in advance, but it was not made clear that the kit was for the die cut shapes. Spare kits were available on the day and over three quarters of the class chose this option which meant that the few of us cutting our shapes (myself included – I had carried my mat and was determined to use it!) were always playing catch up with instructions. I managed to get my table runner completed in the class (just don’t look too closely at the points) and as Sue had kindly given us a set of templates and instruction booklet I may try this pattern and technique again at home.

In the Log Cabin workshop, Sarah showed us how to make three variations on the log cabin block – wonky, wavy and improv. The class was very well structured with us being given just under an hour for each block before the class as a whole moved onto the next one. The first hour just flew by as each round I fought the temptation to square up my wonky block. The second hour introduced two new techniques to me – free hand rotary curve cutting and stitching curves. The third hour saw us using up our “left overs” to make an improve block, but unfortunately this was cut short by a power failure in our classroom which took a good 10-15 minutes to rectify. Sarah very kindly stayed on after the end of the class so that we could make up some of the lost time.

I thoroughly enjoyed both workshops and was very pleased that I managed to use fabric from my stash for the supply list. It was difficult to tell at the time of booking what would be required as the supply list was only sent with the tickets. A downside to taking the classes was having to bring your own cutting mat and rulers as these were rather bulky to carry around the busy halls. Another little niggle (which didn't affect me ) was that tickets were later released for previously sold out workshops which may have been annoying if you had booked your second/third choice of workshops.

My afternoon workshop finished at 4.30pm and it was surprising how quiet the halls were for the last hour of the show - it was an ideal time for looking at the quilts. My top tip for FoQ (assuming you don't want to try to book workshops on the day) is not to arrive for opening time as there will be a big entry queue and instead to stay until until closing time when it is much less congested.

1 comment:

  1. It was lovely to see you at the show Sara. Sounds like you had the right idea for taking it easy and having time to enjoy workshops too. I felt like the whole 2 days was a mad rush and was exhausted by the time I got home, and way way way over budget!

    I think I might give it a miss next year and do a smaller local show, that should work out cheaper (hopefully...)


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