I had the opportunity to speak to the Olney (Illinois) Quilt Guild this week. I'm ALWAYS really nervous (and excited) before I speak, but once I get started I usually calm down. These quilters were VERY nice to me; they were warm and welcoming. They listened attentively, asked questions, and made me feel right at home. Several people came up to me after my talk to get a closer look at some of the pieces and to tell me how much they enjoyed the lecture and trunk show. I even received a couple of really nice emails afterwards. Cynthia was nice enough to send me these pictures. (Thanks Cynthia!)
I spoke about my journey as a quilter which began with VERY traditional work.
These are some Lori Smith quilts that I made awhile back. I brought ten of those along to share with the ladies. They really seemed to like them. I explained how much I learned about piecing and cutting as I worked on these small quilts. I also told them how I improved my machine quilting skills with each one--practice, practice, practice.
I showed string quilts, mystery quilts, baby quilts, seasonal quilts, animal quilts, modern quilts, Christmas quilts, table runners, miniature quilts, and more. I discussed following the "rules" and breaking the "rules." (Breaking the "rules" is a lot more fun!)
I showed an English paper pieced hexagon quilt of my own design. It isn't finished (and it might never be)!
I showed one of my most recent hand quilted pieces. (It is a bit blurry, but you get the idea.)
I showed a framed "extreme embroidery" piece and told its story. (I think some of them thought I was crazy to do so much hand embroidery on one piece. They wanted to know how long it took me.)
I really enjoyed my time with these ladies. I'm always scared to do these talks, but I'm a firm believer that doing things that scare me helps me to learn and grow. I just saw a quote (don't know the author) that really hit home--Give every opportunity a chance; leave NO room for regrets. Have you done anything that scared you a bit lately?