Check in was a breeze, and the Goodie Bag was AWESOME!!!! Elizabeth and Agnes were amazing roomies! We all liked the room the same temperature while we slept...this is REALLY important people. And we had a great time laughing it up. Many an inside joke was created amongst the three of us, and I hope we can do it all over again in a couple of years.
|Top L-R: Elizabeth & Agnes; myself with Elizabeth|
Bottom L - R: Look!!! I have blocks in the Quilt Show. My guild's quilt rocked it!; Told you I got a lot of fabric.
|That's Sherri on the left. Those are my blocks on the right. The far right block was my first one. The bottom left was my second (after lunch) and the top left one was my incomplete third block.|
On day 2 I was in Anna Maria Horner's Composition of a Quilt class. She is a Class A sweetie!!! Seriously, just darling. Despite being 6 months pregnant she was bubbly and so helpful. She shared many gorgeous in progress quilts she's making for her childrens' beds, how to create background and foreground in a quilt top, tips/tricks for amazing needle turn appliqué, and just a whole other slew of great information. She made sure to visit with everyone in the class at least once. I spent a lot of my time sketching rather than sewing (which was a nice break from the day before) and she really helped me with my ideas. There was one REALLY funny picture taken of her doing math and me with my mouth hanging open, but it was out of focus. Darn. I'll play with it and see if I can make it any better because it is hilarious. While her style of quilting may not be like mine, I loved hearing how she goes about planning a quilt and the meaning behind them. I took a lot away from that. (Hi, Julie!!!)
We also had the 80's party which included at least 2 awkward social encounters for me. lol We'll just stop there with that.
On Saturday I had lectures. I was SOOOOOO glad I had this day. It was nice to sit back and let my brain recharge a bit, and yet I think I was able to take away just as much from all of the lectures I attended as I did from the classes. I seriously chose to have lectures this day for David Butler's Photography Lecture (You can find it for free on Craftsy!). He did not disappoint. I picked up so many great ideas, and while I won't be photographing for a business anytime soon, there was a TON to learn there. His wife, Amy Butler, had a great talk about color. I'm finding as I get older how much more important color is to me, and her talk was really inspiring. And I'm just going to stop here to say how darling and sweet they both are. They totally let me geek out and pose for a picture with them.
|David sweetly answered a bunch of my photography questions. Amy called me a "cutie" and commented on how she loved my colors. lol Seriously...they're beyond sweet.|
There were many great speakers in the afternoon/evening as well. Jacquie Gering's talk was beautiful and charged with emotion. And it was a real treat to be able to attend (with fantastic seats I might add) Denyse Schmidt's Keynote speech. She took us on the journey of her life, including finding her font "Scamp" on a truck reading "All things basementy!" HA!!!!!!! I don't know why, but that sticks with me. And lucky me...I had her improv class the next day. I also love her mind mapping process and want to attempt that myself very soon.
|Left: Denyse waiting to give her keynote. Top Right: Denyse hanging up one of our rounds of improv blocks. Bottom Right: My personal improv blocks from the afternoon. So in love with them!|
Now...keep in mind...I'm attempting to embrace improv, but I was finding it incredibly challenging and a lot more emotional than I thought it would. I had dreams about not being able to "improv" in front of Denyse. Ugh. I need to work on that internal dialogue thing. Anyway, she was AMAZING. Seriously my best class experience by far. She was supportive and positive. She referred to my work as beautiful, complimented my flow of color, and some out of the box piecing I did. If you ever have the opportunity to attend her improvisational patchwork class...DO IT!!!!! Her strategy for teaching improv took the control out of my hands in the first half which is exactly what I needed...don't think...DO! By the time she gave us back some of the control in the afternoon I was ready for that responsibility and felt incredibly motivated and successful. She not only has a gift for quilting/art but for teaching as well. It was the perfect way to end my weekend o' improv. I already told her this, but thanks Denyse for bringing me to a place that was so far out of my comfort zone but making me feel right at home there! I can't wait to see where that road takes me. (Oh, and HI SHANNON!)
So, am I an improv person now? Meh...not full time. But, I really look forward to incorporating the lessons learned AND making an improv quilt once in a while. :) Gotta exercise those improv muscles. If I don't...they'll get all mushy and out of shape again.
QuiltCon left me feeling refreshed, renewed, in my quilting. It pushed me to do better, be better, think better. In a way it not only challenged me in quilting but in life as well. I never would have walked up to the Butlers to get a picture with them before, let alone have the nerve to discuss photography with David. Or even ask Denyse about my blocks as I was working on them. I gained supportive friends who helped me through my journey, and really grew to know better some friends I already had. I learned to think more positively because if I don't I may miss out. But, most of all I learned how much quilting really feeds me mentally, emotionally, and maybe even a bit spiritually. After all...having this gift, of pulling color and texture together to form something beautiful and comforting...that's a gift from God, and I treasure it deeply.
So, I leave you with this. I may never say these words aloud, but I totally agree with the sentiment: