Thursday, October 9, 2014

Throwback Thursday Throws Me Back to Germany

So, I've noticing the Throwback Thursday fun.  It made me think of my teaching experience in Germany a few years ago.  I was going to be in Germany to visit my older son and his wife and someone arranged for me to teach a workshop in Saulheim at the Sanger Halle.  Participants included American quilters as well as quilters from France, South Africa, the Netherlands and France. 

The Sanger Halle reminded me of the VFW Halls.  We were in the upper (main) level and it consisted of two rooms; a large room looked like it was for dancing or programs.  The other room seemed to be the bar.  We met in the bar.

The day began with my showing slides of my quilts and that was followed by a lovely soup luncheon with wonderful homemade breads.  The lunch was served by a lovely German couple.  I think she probably did the cooking and he was the person who was in charge of the Sanger Halle. 

The workshop I taught was my “Not Your Grandma’s Appliqué” workshop.  While the participants were from all over, I had no problem communicating with them.  They all understood and spoke English, which was a good thing as I didn’t speak anything but English.  Everyone was very attentive and seemed to be having a wonderful time.


Half way through the afternoon, we were served a variety of cakes.  In addition there was wine!  Never had wine served at a workshop before or since.  Getting back to the workshop and my demonstrations, I soon discovered our hostess, after cleaning up the cake treats, had joined us and was looking over my shoulder very attentively – she almost had her chin on my shoulder. 

All of the ladies were so much fun.  Next to seeing my son and his wife and getting the news that I was going to be a new Grandmother, teaching this workshop was the highlight of my trip!

This is Marie.  She presented me with the most adorable crocheted holder for my thimble.

This is everyone!  This is in the entry of the Sanger Halle.  Notice the trophy cases.

Hey!  Throwback Thursday IS kinda fun!

Friday, September 12, 2014

"YES! I Can Go Home With You"

Something I hear from my beginning applique students often is, "Can you come home with me?"  They convince themselves they won't be able to remember everything I tell them in class.  And even though they have lots of information on handouts, I can understand their wanting to see me do what I do up front and personal.

Several years ago my son, Ian, and I made a DVD showing all I cover in my classes.  I was very proud of this project because there were very few instructional DVDs available.  I'm catching up with technology and am putting the DVD in segments according to subject on my YouTube channel.   (Thank you, Ian!)

Here are all the videos in one place.  No searching.  It should be easy enough for you to watch them all in order.  I hope they are as helpful for you as they have been for my beginning students.

Let me know if you have any questions!

Chapter one

Chapter two

Chapter three

Chapter four

Chapter five

Chapter six

Chapter seven

Chapter eight

Chapter nine

Chapter ten

Chapter eleven

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Tutorials Go Live!

In the spring of 2002, my first book, HEARTS AND FLOWERS:  HAND APPLIQUE FROM START TO FINISH, was published.  I received a phone call from a producer representing SIMPLY QUILTS WITH ALEX ANDERSON, during the following fall.  Would I consider appearing on SIMPLY QUILTS?  Am I able to come to Burbank the following January for taping?  Can you imagine my answer?

At this same time our younger son was a student at the University of Arizona in Tucson, studying acting and all that goes with it, including film making.

The summer following my taping, when our son was home for the summer, we talked about my making a DVD that would be a visual companion to the book.  And since I often hear from my beginning students, “Can you come home with me?” we decided to call it “Yes!  I Can Come Home With You; the Heart of Appliqué.”  Even though we made the DVD in our own living room “studio” we were quite proud of our project – especially since tutorial DVDs were not common.

Fast forward eleven years.  Now the “thing” is YouTube!  So, we have decided to break the DVD apart and make these “chapters” available on my YouTube channel.  I will be rolling out each tutorial over the next month or so.  I hope you enjoy them, find them useful and tell your friends.  I’m so very proud of the DVD.  Mainly, I think, because we created it before it was the thing!

Here you go!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

A Quilter's Summer Vacation

Whew!  What a month this has been!

My husband and I set out on a car trip odyssey that took me to some amazing places where I got to see and do some amazing things.  I had a ball!  I am exhausted!

 One of the many serendipitous occurrences was when we had made a right at Pueblo, CO and headed toward Durango, CO.  At about lunch time I saw a road sign that indicated we were VERY near La Veta, CO.  Well, any quilter worth his/her salt KNOWS what that means!  This is the home of RICKY TIMS!  So my husband agreed to make a little side trip - after all, it was lunchtime! - and we headed off the highway for the 5-mile trip to La Veta.

I'm not sure what that picture under the sign represents, but my take on it is "don't make noise!"  So I didn't.

La Veta is a charming little town.  I think the main part of town is all of 9 square blocks, if that much.  There were galleries and restaurants and a few people strolling along.  It was a Sunday afternoon so it was quiet.  Rich made me inquire at one of the open galleries as to where Ricky Tims' studio is located.  This was very hard for me.  I am reticent about being a "fan."  (I never even screamed over the Beatles when I was 14!)  So I asked.  But I also asked for a recommendation for lunch.  We were told where the studio is (just around the corner) and directed to the Dog Bar and Grill.  Isn't that an intriguing name?

Cuchara, CO is a tiny community tucked in the mountains just a short ride down the road from La Veta.  Indeed, on the patio, almost everyone had a dog with them for lunch!  I think someone mentioned there are about 70 people who live in Cuchara year-round.  But lots of people have homes and come for a little rest and relaxation.  We were chatting with a guy up from West Texas.

After lunch, we stopped by Ricky's studio.  No one was there, of course.  I really don't think he encourages visitors, anyway.  But it is an interesting building just off the main street.


I especially appreciated the wrought iron work.

In Durango, CO I visited the Durango Quilt Company.  The ladies in there were very friendly.  And you can't miss the building for the vivid color!  Look how it matched the sky that day.

I hope you have a chance to visit sometime.  It is a very nice shop.

Later in the week I visited the Quilts, etc and Quilts, etc etc.  This is a shop(s) in Sandy, Utah, a suburb of Salt Lake City.  Quilts, etc is on the corner.  When the building across the street on the other corner became available, they expanded and called that building Quilts, etc etc.  Again, very nice shops!

Want to hear something funny (but sad)?  The night before we left on our trip, I ran around and organized a stitching project to take along to work on in the hotels in the evenings.  I carried that bag in and out of the car.  I never opened it - just too tired!  I keep taking projects to work on when I travel and I never actually do any work!  But I just know if I failed to take something along, something bad would happen!

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Virtual Reality

I had the most interesting virtual experience today! 

I belong to an online discussion group.  We are an eclectic group from all over this country, Ireland and England.  This means quite a diversity in time zones.  We discuss books, cooking, life, philosophy, pets and anything else that crosses our thoughts.

Today was our England member’s birthday.  Early in the week I proposed we have a party today and I offered to bring champagne, lemonade, iced tea (sweet and non) and asked one of our other members to bring the cake (she makes cake pictures with punctuation and symbols).  Everyone took to the idea immediately and started offering other items they could “bring.”  There was quite an assortment of dishes and shared recipes, decorations and even an offer to make dogs from balloons if someone else could blow up the balloons..  And because so many people had other commitments today, I suggested we make the party an open house so people can come and go instead of all meeting at the same time.

The day dawned with our birthday girl pronouncing the fun she was having with the champagne and the cake – after all, she is 5-8 hours ahead of most of us.  Throughout the day I checked in on the forum and discovered that everyone was indeed having a marvelous time at the “party.”  All discussion was in the present tense and it was so inventive, it felt like we were all together, eating, drinking and dancing.  Yes, there was even music!

Everyone agreed it was the best party ever.  Now, this was my first experience with an alternate reality but I found it quite intriguing.  I think it stretched my imagination.  I haven’t played “pretend” for over 50 years.  It got me to thinking – how would it be to make a virtual quilt?  A quilt solely out of descriptive words. 

Of course, it probably works best with a group.   Anyone game?

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

The Pressure of Deadlines - "I need a wife!"

Do you find yourself with deadlines and then get frazzled over them?  I sure do!  In fact, sometimes I think I need a wife.

A wife often keeps the house, organizes the family activities, does the laundry and the keeps the larder stocked and food prepared.  If I had someone to do all that for me, I’d be able to meet my deadlines.  I’m sure of it!

Between the block of the month I’m stitching for the shop, my own designs and keeping up with class samples, I am falling behind.  Oh, don’t get me wrong – I’m not complaining.  Oh, maybe I am, but I certainly don’t mean to.  Being too busy is a far sight better than having nothing to do!  And there is so much fabric and so many patterns and so little time!  Maybe that’s all I need – MORE TIME!

Where do you feel pressure?

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Painters, Quilters, Color

I went to an art fair and met a painter by the name of Kathy.  (I’m tellin’ ya, there is something magical about the name Kathy and how it correlates to creativity!)  We got to chatting about her work.  She asked if I paint so I explained how I used to work in oil and now I work in fabric.

Kathy told me of her first experience of going on a Shop Hop.  She was so taken by how visual quilting is and how colors are used.  She got so excited by it, in fact, that she, while not actually making quilts, is rather quilterly in her color choices.  She loved the idea of choosing a focus fabric and then pulling colors from it to create a painting’s pallet, something quilters do regularly.

Kathy teaches and says she now uses the exercise of choosing the focus fabric and coordinating fabrics as one of her ways to teach color to her painting students.  Isn't that an interesting concept!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

I Was Just Thinking

Recently I read a blog by Kelly Ashton (Kelly’s QuiltingBlog) that got me to thinking.  Kelly recounted her discovery of another Kelly Ashton.  The “other” Kelly, while a member of the visual creative world, was not a quilter but an, er, “adult entertainer.”

This got me to thinking.  I wondered how many other Kathy Delaneys are out there and what do they do?  So I did the Google dance and discovered something quite interesting.  (Yes, I was gleeful to see that I was at the top of the list!)  As I scrolled down the list of Kathy Delaneys I discovered that each one of us listed is creative and, many, award winning!  Now, isn’t that interesting.

What is it about the name Kathy Delaney that it is so consistently attached to creative people?  Or is it only the creative Kathy Delaneys that make it on a Google list?  These are all very deep questions but the only really important question is, “Are there any Kathy Delaney porn stars?”