Sunday, March 29, 2015

An "absolutely fun" free-motion quilting time in Murfreesboro

Students in my "Intro to Free-motion Quilting" class at
Absolutely Fun Sewing and Embroidery,  Murfreesboro, TN.
Whoo-hoo! We had an absolutely fun time at Absolutely Fun Sewing and Embroidery in Murfreesboro, TN this weekend in the free-motion quilting classes. Students came from as far as Ohio to take my class. Judy Winters, the shop's owner, and her wonderful staff pulled out all the stops—food, prizes, beautiful samples on the walls, and a new sewing machine give-away—for the two-day free-motion quilting event.

There were two mid-arm sit-down quilting machines and two top-of-the-line Janome sewing machines set up in the bright and spacious classroom for students to test drive. I brought three kitty cuddle quilts to put under the needle so students could practice on an actual quilt sandwich.
Baby Lock's Tiara sit-down quilting machine.
Artistic SD sit-down quilting machine.
Janome Horizon sewing and quilting machine.
Here are some of my Blank Quilting and StudioE quilt and bag samples that decorated the classroom for the event. Jason, who is also a landscape designer, hung the samples with an aesthetic eye.
Jason hangs the samples in the classroom.
"Sew Happy" (by Whirligig Designs) made with Chestnut Soufflé
Fabrications pre-cut strips by Blank Quilting Corp.
Samples made with fabrics by Blank Quilting and StudioE Fabrics.
Natural Wonders, a new fabric line by StudioE Fabrics was just delivered to Absolutely Fun Sewing, and Judy already had a great shop sample made to show it off. (These fabrics would look fab in a Row by Row Experience quilt, don't you think?)
Quilt top made with fabrics from the Natural Wonders collection
by StudioE Fabrics.
We started the day with free-motion warm-up exercises.

Throughout the day, Judy would pop into the classroom and we'd give her a "Woot Woot." Then she'd draw a ticket for a door prize. Every student had their name in the drawing for the BIG prize—a new sewing machine. (Congratulations, Amy, the lucky winner!)
The student population from the classes this time ran the gamut with their quilting experiences. We had a several hand quilters, a couple long-armers, a couple toppers (jumping right into the deep end of the quiltmaking experience), a 15-year-old that was new to sewing and quilting, and several who wanted to "get out of the ditch" and apply their own creativity and design sensibility to their quilts.

Students quickly got into the rhythm of moving their hands and the quilt sandwich for free-motion quilting.
Free-motion quilting.
We also had a Show and Tell from two students. This is Mary with her gorgeous, king-size sampler quilt. Mary is a very accomplished quiltmaker and patchwork extraordinaire. Would you believe I met Mary in my first ever quilt guild? I remember her giving programs and teaching other guild members various piecing tips and techniques and showing us how to make different quilt blocks. Now, some 14 years later, she was taking a class from me! What an honor. (And so great to see you again, Mary!)
Judy Winters (left) helps Mary Cluck Wallace show her sampler quilt.
And this is Traci with the "Field Bag and Tote" (an Amy Butler pattern) that she made with Blank Quilting fabrics from the Sisley and Madeline collections. Check out the cool piping! (Great job, Traci!)
Traci shows her Field Bag made with fabrics
by Blank Quilting.
In class, students brought up intriguing and thoughtful questions that led to interesting discussions. We did a lot of laughing along with learning and quilting.
Students from Intro to Free-motion Quilting class.
Thank you to Judy, Ray and Absolutely Fun Sewing and Embroidery for inviting me to teach one of my favorite classes. And to all the quilters that came out and spent a day with me—thanks for a fabulous weekend and may your bobbins always be full!
Free-motion class (Day 1), Absolutely Fun Sewing and Embroidery
Murfreesboro, TN.
And I got two kitty cuddle quilts bound and ready to deliver. The third one just lacks a little more quilting, but it's looking good.
Two of three Kitty Cuddle Quilts got quilted during the class.
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