Road 2014 Faculty Spotlight: Meet Lisa Sipes

Lisa will be teaching the following all day, hands on long arm quilting classes: Thursday #4012 The Great Feather Debate; Friday #5011 Line It Up; and Saturday #6011 Back to the Basics. She is also teaching a half day hands on long arm quilting class Sunday #7007 Flat Factor. Portrait

Personal- A Vegetarian with a “very spoiled fat cat” named Lily, Lisa Sipes was introduced to quilting by her mother. She had been “basically bored with life,” and her mom told her to give quilting a shot.  Lisa originally thought that her mom was nuts, because “of course, I had that stereotypical idea of what I thought quilting was.”  The first time she saw a long arm quilting machine, she did some custom quilting on a quilt top.  As Lisa says, “The rest is history.”  Interestingly, Lisa learned to long arm quilt before she learned to properly use a rotary cutter. Quilting

Where do you find inspiration for your quilting? Everywhere.  I don’t even really have to look for it.  Most of my greatest quilt ideas come from my beliefs and ideals.  None of them have come to fruition yet (who has the time?), but when they do, it will sort of be an unveiling of a type of quilting that most don’t expect from me.

What is the one quilt tool that you can’t live without? I’m going with two, because they’re both equally important.  One is the Sewline Air Erasable ballpoint pen.  I don’t mark motifs, and really don’t mark much at all when I’m quilting.  But I like to have some registration lines or reference points and I don’t want to have to remove them.  I’ve tested the Sewline pen with several different types of fabrics and never have to worry about it becoming permanent (unless it’s pressed).  The other is Janet-Lee’s Other Favorite ruler from The Gadget Girls.  SMy quilting has transformed exponentially over the last year and a half with my use of straight lines, all accomplished with that ruler.

What do you like to do when you aren’t quilting? I think the better question is, “When are you not quilting?” Seriously!  If I’m not physically quilting, I’m planning for quilting, writing about quilting, talking about quilting, teaching quilting… You get the idea. But when I allow myself to have a life beyond quilting, I really enjoy live music and really good food.  Preferably simultaneously.Lisa and quilt

What do you like most about teaching? My absolute favorite thing is seeing that “light bulb moment” where you can tell just by the look on someone’s face that they *get it.*  I love encouraging others to find their own path and their own quilting voice.  I think that for most people, half the battle is giving themselves permission to try something new.  And I’m more than happy to be a cheerleader.

What is the funniest or most embarrassing moment you’ve had while teaching? I was quilting on a machine brand I’d never used before.  The hopping foot was really skinny, and backwards (or, I guess sideways) from what I was used to on my Gammills.  I was demo-ing ruler work and since the foot was skinny and weird to me, the ruler kept slipping over it; the needle got stuck on the ruler and seized up the machine.  That happened three times before I put the ruler down and switched to free motion.  I think I recovered okay!

What has been the best class you have taken? I haven’t really taken any classes.  I did take a whole-cloth class with Karen McTavish in 2011, but I mostly helped the other students (read/ talked with other students) with their quilts and came home with the same blank piece of fabric I went to class with. 

What is the farthest you have traveled that is quilt related? I haven’t been out of the country, and I really don’t plan to as of right now.  But considering I’m in middle-USA (for now!) I suppose each of the coasts would have to be the farthest I’ve traveled.  It seems I have done a lot of work out on the east coast. I’m looking forward to adding more fun quilty goodness to my schedule on the west coast.

What is your best tip for quilters? Stop talking about it and just DO IT, already.  You’ll never know what you’re capable of until you try.doodlecollage

What do you want your students to get out of your classes? Well, that of course depends on the class.  Of course I want all of my students to have a good time, to walk away from the classes with bits of knowledge or inspiration that will help them in their journey, and I want them to leave feeling comfortable with their direction.  I also try to remind them that if they ever have any questions or need any additional help, I’m only an email away.  And even if they don’t need additional help, email me pictures of creations inspired by the class! It makes my day. 🙂Modern Quilt

You can visit Lisa at:  http://thatcrazyquiltygirl.blogspot.com