Last week I welcomed a new-to-quilting visitor to my studio for my ‘Quilt in a Day’ class. It’s always a pleasure to introduce someone to quilt-making for the first time and teaching one-to-one is a very satisfying way of making that introduction, because the experience can be tailored closely to the participant’s requirements.
Now I am installed in my colourful artist’s studio at Ushaw, the class is held there.
You will be coming to this wonderful building:
The day offers six hours of teaching, with a break for morning coffee and a cup of tea in the afternoon. At lunchtime, we took our sandwiches and sat outside in the large courtyard below my studio (which is sometimes used for concerts, as seen in the photo).
This is what the cutting table looked like the evening before the class. Part of the experience involves trying out different pieces of equipment, such as rotary cutters, quilters’ rulers, pins, needles and fabric markers, so I always offer a good selection, so people can make an informed choice when they buy their own.
It isn’t possible, of course, to make a full-sized bed-quilt in a day, but in six hours you can make a small quilt about the right size to sit under a sewing machine, or to go on top of a dressing table. The point is, that all the basic skills needed for quilt-making are covered: choosing fabric and wadding, cutting, joining pieces to make blocks, joining blocks to make rows, adding borders, layering up the quilt with wadding and backing, quilting, attaching a binding and a label. It takes time to become confident and this small quilt is designed as a skill-builder.
The sewing machine is set up with a specialist quarter-inch foot, so piecing accurate patchwork blocks is easy.
When the time comes to add quilting stitches through the three layers, the specialist walking foot is used on the machine.
At the end of the day, my visitor asked if she could write a review for me about the course and I was pleased to agree! This is what she wrote:
I attended the “Quilt in a day” workshop yesterday, and had a great time! Working in Amanda’s studio at Ushaw was a lovely quiet and creative space in an amazing building, brimming with history. Amanda had planned the day really well and I came away with a great sense of achievement after making my own lap quilt! I had never done any patchwork or quilting before but have always loved the idea of making a quilt that can be kept in the family. I now have the confidence to begin making a cot quilt for my first grandchild and feel I have informed knowledge of the sorts of tools I need to buy. After looking at Amanda’s work I feel really inspired to design my own style quilt too! Thanks Amanda for opening up a whole new world for me!
If you’d like to do the class yourself, click this link: http://amandajanetextiles.com/class/
If you need more information, do get in touch.
This is my ‘Bears’ fabric design. You can find it here.