Sunday, October 13, 2013

Recap: Barbara Persing Trunk Show, Lecture, and Demonstration

This past Tuesday, in place of our regular October meeting, Barbara Persing visited us. She is a well-known long arm quilter and author of StrataVarious Quilts (written with her sister, Mary Hoover) and Listen to Your Quilt. I think it's safe to say we were completely mesmerized with her quilts, quilting, and ideas.

 The stunning cover quilt, "The Sampler," from Listen to Your Quilt. It has a different quilting design in each orange peel/cathedral window block. When she passed this quilt around, everyone took their time when it came to passing it to the next person!

A traditional version of the same quilt

 Robin helped hold many of the quilts. She is a champ!

As she shared her quilts, Barbara listed the ways in which you can approach quilting your quilts.

1. Categorize your quilt - is it an art quilt? For kids? Modern? Traditional? She suggested you "marry the quilting to the style of the quilt." For example, a traditional quilt might have feathers that are in the same exact place on all sides. A modern quilt with traditional elements might have feathers scattered all over.

2. Determine the intended use of the quilt. Will it be for a bed (all-over quilting/less quilting works best with a lot of washes)? How about the wall, which gives you more freedom to quilt densely? Is it for a show?

3. Decide how much impact you want the quilting to have. This connects with #2.

4. Decide the kind of thread and color you want to use. Barbara believes that 9/10 times, a matching thread color will be best, though a contrasting color definitely has its place.

She chose a brown thread color for this quilt, which was designed by her sister.

She suggested learning how to free-motion quilt (FMQ) stippling, loops, and short lines first, because all of the designs you can make come from those.

Finally, Barbara took many of our quilt tops and suggested how we can quilt them. The individualized attention we received was priceless! Thanks again, Barbara, for an inspiring presentation!

Barbara drawing designs for Andi to quilt on to her traditional Christmas quilt

-Jess S.