Last year a good friend explained that when she made New Year's resolutions, in addition to the usual weight loss and improvement of her character, she included at least one new skill she wanted to learn during the next 365 days. :-) I like that idea!! So for 2009 I vowed to learn traditional needle-turn hand applique' ...and would you believe I actually learned!
Granted, it was DECEMBER! when I finally picked it up, but with the help of a good teacher -- namely a video, How to Applique' the Piece O' Cake Way -- and some insistence from my LQS (Local Quilt Shop)'s proprieter (Paula Philpot at Paula's Quilting Pantry in East Bernstadt, KY) that we do a class on the Circuit Rider Quilt (seen here: www.cottonpatchfabrics.com/cgi-bin/Store/store.cgi?cart_id=7666476.11211.s0&product=bom_civil&productid=bom_circuitrider&keywrds1=circuit+rider&sales=0&lastmenu=
(especially since I'd ordered the Block of the Month kits from the Cotton Patch!) -- I tied in.
And I LOVE it! Hand applique is portable, relaxing, artistic -- what better way to demonstrate that quilting really is "cheaper than therapy!" I'll post some photos of my blocks so far in the coming days.
In the meantime, if you want to purchase the Circuit Rider Block of the Month, buy from Cotton Patch Fabrics -- they are generous with their fabric, have great service -- and if you mention my name I might get a discount on the (embarrassed now...) two other Blocks-of-the-Month I'm doing with them! :-) If you are in or near London, KY -- check out Paula's shop and the classes she has there!
Now, what is for 2010? Well, it's machine quilting - particularly free-motion. And I'm getting an earlier start on my New Year's resolution than last year! I just purchased a Bernina Quilt Frame on which I'm using my 440QE to quilt. There's definitely a learning curve to stitching on a frame, but already I'm better than when I stitched on the same machine at a table. We'll see if I take to this as quickly as I did applique'!