Sunday, March 27, 2016

Bonnie Hunter workshop!

Bonnie Hunter spoke at the Kalamazoo Log Cabin Quilt Guild meeting recently, and offered two workshops. I attended the Cathedral Stars workshop with my friend Stephanie. 

I've done very few workshops/classes, and at first I wasn't totally sold on the idea of a workshop for a pattern. I can follow patterns myself--what would I learn at the workshop? But two friends (thanks, Stephanie and Diane!) helped me realize the benefits of a workshop, and I also realized it was an opportunity to have an entire day where I was "supposed" to be sewing. I was sold! 

Here's Stephanie, Bonnie, and me at the end of the workshop, holding completed blocks:

I really enjoyed the workshop. Bonnie is so much fun to listen to, and I learned a ton of helpful little tips that will improve all of my quilting, not just on this pattern. 

Here is Bonnie's Cathedral Stars quilt, the pattern we were making. 

I spent far too much time considering a color palette. I was determined to actually use scraps (and yardage!) that I had, and I also wanted it to have a color scheme rather than being all-colors-scrappy. Using turquoise/blue was a no-brainer. Of my 16 scrap boxes, five are in the blue family. I had some bright green yardage that didn't work for its original intention, so I had star points. I just needed something to tie it together. I found some gray pin dot yardage that I'd forgotten about, and I was set. A little orange for pop, and here was my plan:
My quilt will ultimately have corners; I was just lazy when creating the digital design. And also, I have no idea how big my quilt will end up. Not a queen, but maybe bigger than what you see here.  

Here's what I got done during the class:

And I've assembled a few more since then. This quilt is much busier with many more small pieces than what I usually do, but I'm liking how it is coming together. Can't wait to see more of it!

Besides a using an Easy Angle Ruler to make HSTs (I may never go back to the old "draw a diagonal line, pair two squares and sew on each side of the line" method again!), one takeaway from the class that I'm already putting to use is the idea of leaders and enders. Simply put, keep a pile of pre-cut pieces/scraps/etc. next to your sewing machine and start and end each set of chain piecing or whatever you're doing by sewing a unit together. Smoother sewing plus extra productivity. 

I have a huge bagful of leftover paired triangles from my Shady Directions quilt. I have a plan for them. Now they are my leaders and enders, and they're getting sewed together. In the past week, I've sewed 50 of them! (Of course, I still have to square them up...ugh.) Had I actually remembered to use a leader/ender each time, I'd have even more.  Progress!

Bonnie also did a trunk show at our guild meeting Tuesday night. I "unselfishly" volunteered to help hold the quilts so I had an up-close-and-personal view. So much inspiration there--I have a couple more quilts of hers in mind to make, including the 2015 Mystery Quilt, Allitare. 

1 comment:

  1. What fun to take a class with Bonnie. I love your colour pallette and the blocks you have made so far. Forgot about the Easy Angle ruler that must be in my basket of rulers so I am off to search!