Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Quilting World

Well, this past weekend was it.  The beginning of a new life skill called quilting.  Please don't confuse this with sewing.  Spending the past two days with master teacher Harriet Hargrave and her daughter Carrie has taught me at least that much, but oh, so much MORE!  If you ever have the chance to visit Harriet in her store near Denver, Colorado or to purchase her books and read and re-read them thoroughly,  you are one fortunate person!  As a college graduate and someone who has taken countless Master's classes, I have to tell you that I have never learned more useful information in such a short time as I learned from taking Harriet's class.  

Harriet began the class Saturday, Nov. 6, 2010 with a short introduction and then moved right on to asking who each of us 25 people were doing taking a class "Heirloom Machine Quilting".  She wanted to know WHY we were taking the class.  When it came to my turn, I explained that I had grown up around quilts women donated from local church to raise money at a quilt auction each spring to keep the church kid's camp going, I also mentioned my hometown, which was where her daughter Carrie first attended college.  She loved attending NDSU-Bottineau!  Cool connection, I thought.  Isn't it a small world after all?

Harriet and her daughter have started a new series of teaching books, much like a college course, and I would like to share the following blog with you to check out:  A lady named Leslie Davis from Tasmania, Austrailia retired and decided to take up quilting.  She got her hands on Harriet and Carrie's freshman and sophomore books and went to town tackling the projects which they designed as educational tools to teach from the ground up. 

I can see that I have a LOT to learn, but after taking Harriet's class this past weekend, I now know that this is a skill I can obtain - heck, anybody can learn to quilt!  If you've been wanting to learn, pick up this "bible" on quilting and get started, no fancy $10K sewing machine required.  Harriet will set you straight on that right from the start!  :-)  Who doesn't appreciate a frugal person in today's economy?  I know I do!

Harriet has asked us to start researching traditional quilts from 1760 through 1989 (prior to longarm quilting). I've got to see if our local library has "Civil War Women", "From Fiber to Fabric", books by quilt artist Diane Gaudynski , the Japanese magazine "tshushin" , and for quilting stencils refer to the vast designs available from , , , and which offers paper packets of stencils which you are then able to easily enlarge or reduce at will on a copier.

After researching all that interesting information, then take a virtual tour of the vast array of historical quilts from the Lincoln Quilt Study Center on the University Campus in their Home Economics Department. 

Harriet's whole deal is to have well-educated quilters out there.  For a total beginner like myself, I can see that research is a step in the right direction.

If you are interested, I hope you will join me in my quest for information about quilts.  Please share great links you happen upon - I'd love to know more about thread choice, needle choice, the right quilting foot and darning foot for Babylock machines,etc.

More tomorrow....

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