Saturday, 11 November 2017

Creative Construction Quilt Symposium 2017 Sheena Norquay Shining Circles Class

In early October it was the NZ national quilting symposium "Creative Construction" here in Christchurch. So as I can make the effort to travel to the Houston International Quilt Festival every two years I felt I needed to make the effort to attend the event in my own back yard.

These days I am interested in classes that teach me techniques that can be translated into other creative adventures rather than a straight forward patchwork and quilting class.

For Creative Construction I chose a class with Scottish tutor Sheena Norquay.  This was an excellent class with a wonderful giving tutor. Sheena made sure that we all received as much attention as we needed and that we had enough information to finish our piece at home.  For me the intention was to play in the moment. I have no intention of finishing this piece although I may play around with some more free machine quilting on the painted circles so my samples demonstrate the techniques a bit more thoroughly.

The tutor

According to Sheena's profile on The Quilters' Guild of the British Isles members page she became interested in patchwork in the 1970's and started to quilt by hand and machine in the early 1980's. After being a Primary School teacher for 30 years I gave it up in 2006 and am now a freelance quilting teacher. I also make work for exhibitions and have won numerous awards since the mid 1980's.  My work is varied in subject, style and technique ranging from decorative, symmetrical pieces to landscapes and seascapes. I am inspired mainly by nature and love playing with pattern and free motion quilting.

Creates Sew Slow: Pearls are not always White Sheena Norquay 2009
Pearls are not always White 2009
62 x 103 cm
© Sheena Norquay
Creates Sew Slow: Out of the Blue Sheena Norquay 2008
Out of the Blue 2008
62 x 103 cm
© Sheena Norquay

The class

Shining Circles is a one-day surface design class for intermediate to advanced quilters. This workshop is described as exploring stencilling circles and printing with circles and rings using one or more colours of metallic fabric paint and then free machine quilting using metallic threads.  Different layouts of designs will be shown and discussed.  Students can decide to do a square cushion cover / side of a bag or a long, skinny wall hanging.  Circles, rings and sticky backed Fablon will be provided for printing and stencilling, but you can bring anything circular if you wish.  Free machine stitch techniques taught will include embroidered trapunto, outlined trapunto, incised rings and circles using straight stitched and satin stitching.

My samples

I chose to paint on a black background using two Jacquard Lumiere paints metallic silver and super sparkle, which on the fabric I find difficult to tell apart.

Creates Sew Slow: Shining Circles
I also took some circular rubber stamps and a metallic silver Fabrico stamp pad.

The stamp pads made much less of an impression on the black fabric than the Lumiere. The photos had to be lightened considerably to show the stamp within the Lumiere circle.  On the whole sample piece at the bottom of this post you can hardly see the stamps.
Creates Sew Slow: Shining Circles

Creates Sew Slow: Shining Circles
Cutting circles of assorted sizes out of fablon (sticky backed plastic) then sticking the positive or negative onto your fabric to paint is an inspired idea.  The fablon was much easier to use than freezer paper.

Creates Sew Slow: Shining CirclesThe outer circle for this one was made using a wine bottle cap which had a pretty embossed pattern.  Unfortunately I didn't get my shapes positioned properly to touch edge to edge so I stamped some more to get overlapping wine bottle caps, which ended up just looking messy. Or maybe it is just the imbalance in intensity between the outer bottle tops and the inner rubber stamp.

Creates Sew Slow: Shining CirclesThis is the only one of my shapes that I free machine quilted with pebble quilting in the circle and a haphazard feather around the outer edge.

The masterpiece in its entirety.  Luckily I only went to play not to produce a work of art.

And in the best use of play we learnt a lot including some useful tips and tricks. For example, did you know you get better control of fabric paint for a delicate line by applying it with a tooth pick rather than a paint brush.

It also gave me lots of ideas and you might see fabric painting on a garment soon.

If I sort my pictures out from the exhibitions I might do another post of my favourites some time soon.

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