It was meant to be all about feathers
but our direction took a rather fruitful detour from feathers to foliage. Everybody in quilting loves feathers! We love the way the light bounces off the tear-drop shapes. So feathering is guaranteed to have a popular following. There is a certain progression that helps even the newest machine quilter gain confidence in creating the much loved feather shape. We begin with a simple pattern of hearts and loops. The loops help us to manoeuvre every-which-way around our quilt top. The hearts teach us to create the all important tear-drop shape. Put them together and you've got a simple line design that is going places. And it did go places, just not quite where we expected.
We had the good fortune to have Lalla Ward as our 'resident Art Quilter' for this Retreat. And Lalla brought her sketchbooks and a lovely leaf book. When Lalla made the little leap from hearts to leaves we all wanted to have a try..
There are literally hundreds and hundreds of leaf shapes all begging to be combined in all sorts of lovely arrangements. So we spent some time going from drawing on paper to drawing on fabric. Then we experimented with what the leaves would look like in different sorts of thread.
These photos capture a marvellous few minutes where everyone was happily drawing all sorts of leaves...
...moving the pens in the very same way that soon they would be guiding the sewing machine.
In the end it doesn't matter what we draw. What matters is that we do draw all the time and in all sorts of places; envelopes, spare bits of paper, sketchbooks, rolls of paper from Early Learning Centre. Once we're confident on paper we can do it on quilt tops. Our Art Quilter frame transforms the sewing machine needle into a pencil. That means whatever we can draw we can quilt. Simple leaf shapes can be connected by loops and aimed in all sorts of directions to create an infinite variety of gorgeous quilted shapes. The possibilities are endless.