Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Class Day with Karen Combs


After all my whining about packing up the stuff for quilt class I can honestly say now that I am glad that I did it...take the class not all the whining.

The class was with Karen Combs and it was on Patchwork Illusions. We did a dimensional box shape. This isn't the type of piecing I usually do I know, but sometimes when you go outside your comfort zone you learn techniques that help with your regular fabric or piecing styles. This class definitely did that for me.

First, to get the illusion there are some specific ways of selecting fabric. There is the obvious - light, medium and dark. The one that was real challenge for me was to make them similar in texture. Yikes. I am a high texture scrapquilter....you want me to put fabrics that are similar in the same block! My brain cells were screaming heresy! But ya know for this method - she knows what she is talking about!

I am thinking that this approach may also work in applique (we are the guild that "forces you to applique." inside joke there!) Like my piecework when I applique I tend to use a lot of different patterns - like 20-30 different greens for leaves. I really work on keeping them varied. I wonder what would happen if I used her approach on the leaves - less vaiation texture but still lots of color variation. It could give the piece more depth. I may play with that on my next applique.

Susan also had some original (at least we hadn't heard them before!) techniques for working with the bias and the parallelograms. She works at a good pace and allows gossip and snack time without losing control of the class. The big bonus on this class - the quilts using this block look very difficult but after the class you find yourself saying "so that is the illusion - this isn't very hard at all!"

So it was a creative shot in the arm and a fun low stress day playing with blocks. I may make a half dozen more of the blocks to make a wallhanging or something...stay tuned. (by the way my the purple and pink on the lower right of the design board is my block...I finished two blocks in class - whooo hooo!)

And for those curious folks out there...I ended up making a Peach Brandy Poundcake and picked up some fresh strawberries for dessert. It was a good thing too. As you get older it is more difficult to flirt your way out of a speeding ticket (not that I would ever have tried that!) but I have found a new method of sweettalking our men in blue. Drive around with a home made cake in the front seat of the car...I'm sure he told dispatch it was just some little old lady with a handicapped plate so he didn't ticket her. I hope he just made sure to brush the crumbs off the uniform so there wasn't any evidence!

19 comments:

Gina said...

You are a good girl baking your own cake! You did not have to talk your way out of a speeding tkt? Did you? Hope not :) lol
These Patchwork illusions are so mesmerising... awesome!

Sunna Reyr said...

I had the same reaction when I first learned to piece together a block. Duh, is this all there is too it? Lol. Would love to learn this technique. Someday.

Magpie Sue said...

Handicap sticker and homemade cake... got it!

Clare said...

The blocks are awesome.

You didn't? Honestly?

Jeanne said...

I love Karen Combs I have a couple of her books. :) Glad you had fun at the quilting class, I know what you mean about packing everything up and whining, I feel the same way but like you once I get there I am always happy I went. :)

Piecefulafternoon said...

It is amazing how those blocks change shape right before your eyes - I love all the photos.

Sherry said...

Hi love the blocks I think you should do a on line class about how to do them!!!

Lazy Gal Tonya said...

tsk tsk tsk, speeding and bribing officers... glad you had fun in class

*karendianne. said...

Fantastic you enjoyed the class. Interesting to read about.

Jenny in Belgium said...

Thanks for sharing your experiences - I have often thought of bying her book and now you convinced me :-))
Jenny

belinda said...

This quilt really does look difficult!!

Dionne said...

What beautiful blocks! Peach Brandy Poundcake, yuuuummmy!
Cheers,
Dionne

Tammy said...

looks like it was a really fun class and i've see that technique, and the poundcake sounds so YUMMY.

fabricbutterfly said...

wow the patchwork illusions class looks like fun and you said it wasn't that hard, cool. And great heads up on getting out of a ticket, I would have eaten the cake before I ever got pulled over, and i would have had the crumbs on my shirt, not to mention the ticket.

KimP said...

I think you need to give us the wonderful receipe for ticket escape - I mean poundcake. Might come in handy!

Purple Pam said...

What a treat you had - a day with Karen Combs. I would love to take a class from her. Your blocks are great. It looks like you accomplished a lot of sewing in that class. I hope there is a follow up story about the ticket and the pound cake!

Sew Create It - Jane said...

Sounds like a wonderful day!

fancystitching said...

Your illusion blocks are WONDERFUL! I've always wanted to try one of these, and you have just reminded me of it... that "want-to" got buried in my memory under lots of other projects i want to try. Great job!

Kat

Darcie said...

lol Glad the Pound Cake sweetened everyone's day! ;-) That's a win/win situation.

Good for you for taking the KC class. There is always something new to learn, isn't there!