Monday, March 26, 2012

Here, There, and Everywhere

I've wracked my brain trying to put everything I saw and did into some kind of order for the blog, but there's just too much info, so I decided to just jump in and tell it in no particular order. I will, however, start at the beginning. Here's the car, packed and ready to go.  You'd think there were more than just Joan and me!

I hope we didn't forget anything!  Traveling with me is always an adventure.  We got stopped the first night by the police for no taillights.  Not so easy to get fixed at 7pm on Super Bowl Sunday, but eventually we were on our way again.  After a few hours the GPS took us off the turnpike and onto these increasingly rural roads with speed limits of 30mph.  After about 20 miles of this we started to question what was happening, especially after the road narrowed to one lane over a bridge!  I tried to use the GPS on my phone, but we were so far out in the sticks there wasn't any service, so we continued on Heavenly Acres Ridge Road, and eventually came upon the reason for the name...

I swear I felt like Hansel and Grettel wandering through the forest.  We did make it back on the turnpike after another half hour or so, and decided to call it a night as soon as we found a hotel.

The next day was uneventful, and we arrived at the Williamsburg Hospitality House and checked into our room.  After getting settled, we went down to the Welcome Room and checked in there.  We got a goody bag full of stuff.  We didn't know it yet, but we got some little trinket at every function.  Here's the first bagful. 

The black bag is a little case for sewing supplies.  The neatest idea, I thought, was the case with calling cards in it.  That way we could trade cards with people we wanted to keep in touch with.  I also liked the red bag with the scalloped top for scraps.  Such a simple thing, but so handy.

Since Joan and I were first timers, we got a TESAA pin, as well as a bar pin to attach.  The Academy has been going on for 17 years, and some people had that many bar pins attached!  I hope to get a couple more on there in the future.

That first night we had a welcome dinner to get to know everyone.  Not many people came for the early add-on classes, so it was a fairly small group, and a nice way to ease into the week.

The next day was my first class, a two day with Elly.  She is the sweetest person.  If I had to sum her up in one word it would be gracious.   We started out getting our kits, and gluing our pattern onto label paper.  Then we cut out the shapes and used them for our templates.

You can see what it's supposed to look like at the top.  We traced the rose onto Pellon to use as a guide for the ribbon roses.  Here's how far I got.  I guess the excitement got to me, because I didn't get very far.  Surprisingly, there is little applique on it, only the vase and leaves.  The decoration on the vase and the bud calyxes are ultrasuede, and the flowers and buds are ribbon.

My roses definitely need more practice.  Here's my neighbor's project.  At least I didn't distract her too much.  ;)

Here is Elly demonstrating how to make a rose.  She had the camera set up so that it projected what she was doing on the screen behind her.

Elly had some amazing things in her portfolio.  They were kind of had to photograph through the plastic, but you get the idea.

She also had several pockets.  I love these.  She wore some of them throughout the week. 

We got a pattern for the last one.  And then, of course, I had to buy some ribbon to make it.  Thank heaven I already have a ton of ultrasuede!

After class we had a dinner, and then a talk by Pat and Arlan Christ.  If you have never seen one of their programs, do anything you have to to get to one.  Word cannot describe the amazing quilt collection they have.  They treated us to a show featuring different borders.  Cameras were strictly forbidden!!  But afterwards we were able to buy two books they had of their collections, and almost all the quilts we saw are in them.

You can check out their quilts on the website here, and the books are also for sale there.

That ends the first day.  Much more to come.

Beth Donaldson, previously known as the Quilt Doctor, has had to change her name and blog address.  It's now Beth Donaldson:  Quiltmaker.  Be sure and check it out to see the behind the scenes tour she gave of the MSU Museum collection.  Now how did I miss that!  :(

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Back From Baltimore Giveaway!

Okay, so maybe it wasn't really Baltimore, but it felt like it.  The Elly Sienkiewicz Applique Academy was the most amazing experience.  We spent a whole week surrounded by so many talented and creative ladies, in such a welcoming atmosphere, that I can't imagine not going back next year and doing it all over again.  If you've ever wanted to go, but were hesitating, I can assure you it's something you don't want to miss.

I have so much to tell you about that I don't know where to begin, so I thought I would start with a giveaway!  I have two small floral Baltimore patterns by Rita Verroca, a postcard of a Baltimore Album Quilt from the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum, and a CD by Kelly Kout of gravestones in the Greenmount Cemetery in Baltimore.  More about this later, but these patterns can be used for applique, quilting, or just for inspiration.

I'll start posting tomorrow about the trip.  To win the giveaway, just leave a comment by the time I do the last post, which should be around next Saturday or Sunday, and tell me what you like better, applique or piecing.

I want to thank every one who commented, emailed or sent a card on the recent passing of my dear Brody.  It's taken some time to heal, but I know you all know how dear our pets are to us.