(Martha, Cheryl, Linda, moi, Terry)
Last weekend I had the thrill and honor of taking a class with the amazing Linda Hrcka of The Quilted Pineapple. She is a kind and generous as she is talented. This woman has worked hard to become an amazing long arm quilter and I was so excited to just be in the same room with her!
For those of you familiar with her, you know that her long arm quilting has been recognized with many national ribbons and titles. She teaches her techniques and process in classes. I don't have a long arm and probably never will, but I do love to machine quilt on my Janome Horizon (often using her rulers) and I found her information super helpful.
Coin for scale, as this quilt was teeny tiny! I just loved those scrappy backgrounds and the scrappy baskets. Can you tell I was smitten?
She passed around lots of small samples and showed some amazing and enormous quilts as well. The particular class I took focused on 'negative space' and how to fill in those 'gaps' in the patchwork. Granted, there's not a whole lot of negative space in my quilts because you know I like to patchwork the heck out of my quilts, but I know I'm going to use what I learned.
Linda's process was fascinating to me. It made so much sense, yet I would never have thought of the things she shared. She showed us how to divide the spaces, how to sketch out ideas, and how to quilt entire sections without ever having to tie of threads. I'm telling you she's a genius! Okay, maybe she's just had enough practice that she's figured out a thing or two, but she did a wonderful job of sharing how she approaches her quilting decisions, which in turn, will help me ask better questions when I approach my next quilt.
For me, it's all about the process. I love seeing what steps other quilters take when they are thinking through their work. When folks ask me, "Why do you take classes, don't you know everything already?" After I stop laughing, I admit that while I've been quilting a long time, I will never know everything (will anyone?) and by learning about what process others use, I can improve my own process.
I think we all have skill sets that are collections of bits and pieces from everyone we have learned from or stitched beside. Using those bits of knowledge in a way that works for our own process is what makes each of us unique.
I hope I'm always fascinated by the stories and the work of folks who do things differently than I do. That's what makes quilting so much fun for me, it's a lifetime of learning and sharing.
Enjoy every stitch!