Attending Classes and Workshops

A couple of years ago, I had the pleasure of attending a Ricky Tims Luminarium workshop. Over the two days, Ricky talked, taught, demonstrated, and even sang for us. When I first drove down to Burlington, VT, for the two-day session, I thought, what on earth is he going to talk about for two days? My only experience with workshops were, at the most, a day long. With my fibromyalgia-fatigue, I thought there was no way I’d get through two days of talking without falling asleep right in front of him. I needn’t have worried.

The two days flew by. Ricky is an amazing teacher and he is so generous with his ideas and thoughts. He had his gorgeous quilts hanging and, unlike at quilt shows, we were allowed to touch them, to examine them as closely as we liked. I understand why we can’t touch quilts at quilt shows, but it’s always so tempting! So if you get the opportunity to attend the Luminarium or any of Ricky’s appearances – GO!! You will learn so much. I used his Convergence technique for two quilts already, my Here Fishy, Fishy and my son’s quilt, Illusions.

The center was created by a technique learned at one of the workshops I attended.
Designed, machine pieced and machine quilted by Marijke Vroomen Durning

I was well into my quilting journey before I took my first class or workshop – at least 20 years. I didn’t know of any and when there were some, they were either not good times for me or the particular topic wasn’t interesting to me. Luckily, more opportunities came up and I took a class on how to make a Mariner’s Compass, one on piecing with circles, and another one on curves – and several more. I wish those opportunities had been around when I first started quilting. But then again, there’s a lot be said about learning with trial and error.

If you have the opportunity to take classes, I urge you to, even if it’s a quilting topic that doesn’t grab at you. One of the quilting workshops I did was on the curves. I did it because the opportunity popped up and I was free, but I wasn’t sure I’d ever do the technique outside of the class. Well, I was wrong. I used it several times, including for my favourite wall hanging, Taxi!

Designed, machine pieced, appliqued and quilted by Marijke Vroomen Durning

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