Monday, 16 November 2015

Fox & Friends Workshop

At last week's Let's Bee Social, I mentioned that I had spent the day teaching the Fox & Friends quilt class in Kincardine, Ontario for the Kincardine Sunset Quilters' Guild.

This time I brought out my camera early, but not quite early enough to get a photo of Judy. It was she that helped me to arrange this workshop. She stuck around for the beginning of the class, but had to leave mid way through. Once everyone got nicely settled in and were making progress, I went around and asked if it was okay to do some pictures. Everyone agreed that they would be willing to be featured here at Sew Fresh Quilts. So let me introduce you all to.....


Joanne.

Joanne is an ambitious newer quilter who wants to make two of the Fox & Friends quilts for her grandchildren. She has a lot of drive and determination. And if she isn't happy with her results the first time through... she isn't afraid to make use of her seam ripper. So I have full confidence in her ability to get both of these quilts done!




Anne and Mary.

Anne wasn't quilting along. She dropped by with all her Sock Monkey supplies thinking it was the day for the Sock Monkey class. Oooops! Sounds like something I would do. However she was interested in the Fox & Friends quilt and did purchase the pattern for making it another day. She spent a few hours hanging out with her guild mates and seeing their progress.

Mary was all ready to make those Foxes and Raccoons. She brought along enough different oranges and grays to make her animals each in a unique print.




Here we have Esther.

She's got the hang of those pesky triangles! Esther chose to follow the pattern to the letter and used only solids.




Meet Martha.

Martha brought along both blues and greens and wanted to create a unique look by mixing both into the background.




And this is Kath.

Kath managed to get those triangles under control very nicely. Nice work!




Here is my buddy, Joanne.

I had never met her in person previously, but had made her acquaintance through email. Joanne does a lot of pattern testing for Quiltmaker magazine, Juliet of The Tartankiwi and Kristy at Quiet Play, to name a few. Perhaps we will start hearing about Joanne's work here at Sew Fresh Quilts? She has kindly offered to do some pattern testing for me too! If you would like to see a photo of me with Joanne and the Fox & Friends in green, click here to go to her blog: Quilts by Joanne.




This is Speedy Agnes.

Agnes is a real go getter. She fully expected to get the entire top done in this one session. But I have not one doubt she will soon be showing it off at a guild meeting in the very near future.




And this is Agnes's sewing partner, Dianne.

Dianne brought along her finished Elephant Parade quilt top to share with us. She made such lovely fabric choices and opted to applique the eyes on those critters. Nice and neat!





Here are beautiful progress shots of some of the work accomplished during the sewing session!












What a great group of ladies and each so welcoming.
It was truly a wonderful experience. Thank you, Kincardine Sunset Quilters!





What I learned from teaching this group....



Problem #1:

The Fox & Friends quilt pattern calls for use of fat quarters (or quarter yard cuts will do), and to cut 4.5" WOF strips. However, because most of these ladies like to prewash their fabric, in some cases it was impossible to cut the necessary 4.5" strips from the yardage after washing.

Solution #1:

The solution was simple. Cut the strips to 4.25" and you can still get the appropriate number of equilateral triangles from each strip. However, your quilt will finish slightly smaller because the triangles will be .25" smaller. However, because the fabric is already preshrunk, the end result would likely be the same as using unwashed fabrics and then washing your finished quilt.



Problem #2:

The Fox & Friends quilt pattern calls for the use of an ordinary acrylic ruler, with a 60 degree line, for the cutting of the equilateral triangles. Dianne explained to me that she had brought along her 60 degree equilateral triangle ruler for cutting. Would that be a problem? I quickly blurted out that this would be fine.... But I should have thought about it before I answered. Turns out the 60 degree triangle ruler is fashioned so that the top tip of the triangles are flat, resulting in slightly larger triangles cut from the 4.5" strip. And therefore, Dianne could not get the proper amount of triangles needed per strip.

Solution #2:

The solution, had I slowed down and thought before answering so quickly, would have been to say that if she cut her strips to a 4.25" width, this would have enabled her to use this special triangle ruler with the intended results and that she would still be able to get the correct amount of triangles per strip.



Dianne handled the mistake on my part with grace and a great deal of self control. I felt terrible about my error in instruction. Apologized. And wished I would have been able to turn back the clock to the beginning of the class and start again. I could not, of course. In addition to the cost of a) paying for the workshop fee, b) paying for the pattern, and c) paying for the fabric required to complete the project as outlined in the pattern.....   Dianne now needed to make a trip back to the fabric shop where she had purchased her fabric to get additional yardage. Now we all can appreciate any excuse to go fabric shopping is a good excuse indeed. However, the shop was not just down the street. But over to a nearby town. So there's gas money too.

Dianne, if you are reading this....
Please contact me by email and allow me attempt to make amends.






Keep On Quilting On!





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6 comments :

Valerie Reynolds said...

Oh how fun to see the process of your "students". Looks like everyone is having fun!! PS LOVE your santa runner too! So cute!!!

Kate said...

Additionally, if the long quarters were quarter metres, instead of quarter yards, washing shouldn't be a problem.
Love the progress you students made.

Rosemary B❤️ said...

Very impressive group of ladies.
I would love to do this.
I like this quilt very much Lorna.
One day I will attempt to make it.
Life is all about making mistakes and getting up and going on. I hope Dianne got back on track again and I am sure she made a beautiful result.
You are so sweet Lorna

Lara B. said...

Your workshop looks so fun Lorna! The ladies all look like they had a good time.
I like that you listed the pitfalls you ran into and your solutions are well thought out. As a die hard prewasher, I'll keep that in mind about the shrinkage. As someone who taught ladies crafts courses for years, alongside many other teachers, I want to tell you not to be hard on yourself Lorna. There is just no way any teacher can prepare for every possibility. And students always come up with questions that teachers haven't had to take into consideration before. You are a great teacher Lorna and the more you do these workshops the better it will be!

Jacqui's Quilts said...

Hi there: Just subscribed to your blog....how much fun is that!! That'll give me the perk I need to get my days rolling LOL. I so feel for you with that 60 degree ruler thing. I teach as well and have learned to be very cautious about those 60 degree rulers by making the same mistake! But, offering to make it right makes all the difference! You handled it very well!! Looking forward to following your blog and maybe I'll get to take a class with you one of these days :-). Who knows eh? Jacqui

Shasta Matova said...

There is so many things to take into consideration when making patterns for others. I know that many designers add a cushion when they give yardages, to allow for mistakes and issues like the ones you mentioned. I am sure that some people will complain about buying too much, but they can always use the extra for other scrap quilts.