Saturday, October 22, 2016

Now, where was I?.........

Oh yes.......

Well, husband duly fed and watered, and all is well. So this year, I was going to be teaching at the Festival of Quilts in Birmingham. Cathy and her husband were coming over as well, to do the Festival and then going on to the Netherlands to her in laws. My beloved Aunt celebrated her 90th birthday earlier this year, and I was going to celebrate it while in the UK.

It was a very different trip in that Cathy and I didn't share a room, and didn't really see very much of each other. It was awful!!!! We are convinced we must have had a relationship in a former life as we really missed each other, and decided that we couldn't have her husband along on further trips, as it ruined it for us. The reason ewe like to have that time together, is it gives us the opportunity to work on ideas for our Festival, we talk over what we have seen, what we could perhaps incorporate and meet up with other countries that we would like to invite here in the future, so there is a good reason for us to be together.

Now having said that, it was good for someone else to see that we are not just having a jolly good time - I won't deny we do, but we work flipping hard as well - and so having Cathy's husband there was good. He is a six foot two Dutchman, and considered quite the hunk. Cathy and i had helped out on the Magna Carta quilts earlier this year in Chicago, and we said we would gladly do so again in Birmingham, and so Martin was "employed" for the duration of the Festival. Cathy took a couple of classes and I did what I could.

As I said, I decided to teach this year as we were paying our own way, I wouldn't have done if the Festival were covering our costs. I had a blast. I did two one day classes, Manipulated fabric trees, and a half day class in fabric postcards. It was busy, and I didn't stop running. The first workshop was a full day, and only 5 students, so it broke me in gently.

In my wisdom, I decided to make kits up to sell to my students, of scraps and other assorted materials, as it isn't always easy to explain what they need to bring. I put together 60 kits as I was also teaching another one day workshop after Festival. I'm glad to say they all brought some amazing fabrics, and I think enjoyed the process. In fact, one of the girls updates me regularly and the piece is just stunning.

I have posted a couple of my pieces here, and I actually took them with me to use as examples in the workshops.

The second class in this technique was full, and I had a really good time, there was a ton of talent in the room, and I do hope I get to see more of the work. The fabric postcard class was a half day workshop and again, a full class.

Three of my postcards.

Again, I had made the kits for this class and added things I thought might be useful, and I think they all enjoyed it, or at least I hope they did.

Cathy enjoyed her workshops and was busy out in the grounds of the NEC painting manhole covers and printing fabric, she wasn't arrested, so that was a good thing, but the work she did was fabulous. She is much more a mixed media artist than I, although I try occasionally without as much success, I don't do abstract very well.

 Her husband the Dutchman, was also busy working on the Magna Carta quilts and also relieving another friend on her booth as she had to go and model in the fashion show that was being held on the Friday evening. Apparently, his arrival at her booth was very entertaining. In the words of Paula Doyle who has a booth opposite,  " he came along and ducked under the table to get into the booth, and rose, like an Adonis, on the other side, and all these women flocked to him...."

Once we stopped laughing, we were impressed.

Festival ended, and then we went our separate ways, Cathy and her husband on to the Netherland and me to my Aunt and also my cousin, whom I have thoroughly enjoyed reconnecting with. Life can get in the way sometimes. Then it was back home and getting back into organizing Festival and another little project that I have on the go............


  1. Well my husband the "handsome Dutchman" is not sure what the fuss is about. In his words "I am not that special". But I must say he does enjoy the attention and I get a bit worried each May when at least one of the quilters wants to take him home after festival.
    Martin is a good sport to go along to trunk shows and festivals as there are not very men at any quilting event.