Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Empty Spools Seminar with Sally Collins

Empty Spools is an expensive vacation, but if you're spending it with Sally Collins and a good friend, its priceless! Sally is such a fantastic teacher and so nice...hard to believe that anyone could honestly be that nice, but she is. Classes start at 9 a.m., you get a break for lunch and they're over at 4. Last year, my teacher strictly adhered to those times. Not Sally. She was in class before breakfast and stayed every night until way past 9 p.m.

This was the quilt that our class was based on. However, before we even started, we had a basic drafting lesson and then we all changed her block to whatever interpretation we wanted.

We made mock-ups of our block, created templates, auditioned fabric and then finally pieced it together. Sally gave lots of instruction about accurate piecing, pressing and the perfect 1/4" seam. Due to my lack of planning, it didn't take long before I realized that the fabrics I'd brought were all wrong. This quilt needed "serious" fabrics and I had grabbed brights.

First "draft":


See what I mean? It needs serious fabrics, like maybe some beautiful greens, grays, whites and a little blue like the colors of our meadow after a snow storm. One of the best parts about all of this was the experience. I will redraft my block, lose the star in the middle, and start over again. Another terrific benefit: the new friends I made there.

This was the view from our classroom. We were in the back of the main hall with this lovely view of the ocean. Our room was close by and had a fireplace! Every day the cleaning staff put in one of those bags you just light and watch burn, and every night we did just that.

This is one of Sally's quilts. Looks like your normal lonestar, right? Wrong!! The diamonds in this lonestar are only 1/2 inch (yes, inch!) in size. 

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