Tuesday, 21 February 2017

A week of finishes (again!) :: Day 2 :: Pears (Gillian Travis workshop)

No 11 on my 2017 FAL Q1 list is finished!!

Now, I'm not sure I really like this but a finish is a finish.  Let me explain.  My local quilt club had organised for Gillian Travis to do a workshop (January 2015) and, having seen her work at Festival of Quilts, I signed up.  It was the Pomegranate Workshop, but the technique is the same for any shape.  I had wanted to do my own shape but then, under workshop conditions, I realised I could spend far too long coming up with a shape that works for the technique and then run out of time to get anything done (it does happen!).  So I went with one of Gillian's shapes - pears!  

The requirement list called for batiks, which I had never used before and had none in my stash.  None of my local shops stocked batiks and I had to send away for some.  I liked the look of this charm pack, Moda Fire and Ice if I remember correctly, and they duly arrived in time for the workshop.  But do they really say pears?  No, not really but you have to carry on because you are at a workshop and I had nothing else to work with.

Whilst I love workshops for the teaching, camaraderie and, let's face it, having a day to indulge in your passion, I don't usually like what I come away from the workshop with.  Does that happen to you?  I enjoyed the day, I enjoyed the process of Gillian's teaching and I quite like the technique but do I like this piece?  No, not really.

However, I decided to quilt and finish it.  It was good practice for free hand guided quilting, some pears worked better than others for this!   Now, what to do with it?!!!


  1. I like your pears. They aren't the typical pears I find at my grocery store but they are an artistic statement. If you won't enjoy hanging them at Christmas or Valentine's Day, give them away. Perhaps your guild has an auction or you know of a non-profit organization looking for things for an auction, donate them. My guild raises funds by having a drawing each month. Members make something seasonal or a quilt related goodie. We offer chances at a $1 each and someone goes home with it and the guild adds funds to pay for various costs. My success rate at workshops is about 50%. I go for the exoerience and usually learn something new which is worthwhile. Even at some of the top international teacher classes, I look at what I learned rather than the project. Thanks for sharing the oears with us. I just got an idea - how about finding a few stuffed birds and at Christmas add them to the piece instead of a partridge in a pear tree, you could have a toucan or parrot!

  2. What a clever idea of Mary's, a partridge in a pear tree/ 12 days of Christmas theme. Maybe attach treats.... but I do agree workshops are about technique and learning together. The practice pieces don't always hit the spot ....

    I did like your point about slow stitching and building in memories and history. Makes me feel a bit better about my glitter quilt and not wanting to rush it. Jenny - the lilac cat

  3. I have the same reaction to most workshops I've attended. I enjoy learning the new technique and being with people, but do not usually like my finished product. I think I've figured out that it's because workshops have everyone creating the exact same thing. There is no room for my own creative touch to be added. In the past I've donated my finished projects to a local group when they are having an auction fundraiser.

  4. I saw the first pic with the single pear and thought 'I'm not so keen', saw the second one with all the pears and I really like it, cant tell you why exactly, something about it just appeals. I love batiks, they are great blenders, and the best thing is they hardly seem to fray.

  5. I really like all of the pears, very cute quilt

  6. I like your pears Abigail! Maybe it's all those time pressures that have you not like the finished product from workshops. I like to let ideas simmer for a while before I start working on them.

  7. I like the look of the quilt, very dramatic. If you discover you don't really like it, I'm sure someone can suggest a charity raffle or auction you could donate too. I bet it would be popular in that kind of venue.


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