Tag Archives: Quilt Class

Patriotism Runs Deep With This Road 2018 Teacher and Vendor

Deb Granger is all about patriotism and giving back.

She and her husband, Duane, own Freedom Star United, a quilt supply company featuring military and patriotic quilt fabric, kits, and patterns. They started their company in 2008 after she had lost her job. She knew she wanted her next venture to be something that “would make a difference.”

Why a military and patriotic theme? Because two of the Granger’s sons and one daughter-in-law have served in the Marines. In fact, Deb made her first quilt for one of her sons during his first deployment. Says Deb, “Our hearts are with the military.”

Michigan residents for the past 25 years, the Grangers are on the road most of the time, attending 30-35 quilt shows a year. “Road to California is our favorite,” said Deb. “The people are great.” Wherever they go, Deb and Duane are on the lookout for a veteran to give a patriotic quilt to. When they attended Road to California 2016, they resented a quilt to then 88-year-old Morrie Hegg from Apple Valley, California. The Grangers learned that Mr. Hegg was a World War II veteran, having served in the 11th Air Force Army Air Corp in Alaska. He came to Road 2016 with his wife and daughter who are both quilters.

Besides having a vendor booth, Deb will also be teaching a class on Monday:

1006C   Sewing Tool Caddy

One of Road 2018’s “non-quilting” classes.

Sewing machines for the class will be provided by Bernina.

Deb says she enjoys teaching and the “one on one time I spend with each of my students.” She believes her students will gain “confidence” if “they are willing to try.” Her word of sewing advice to her students? “Take your time.”

When Deb isn’t teaching or working in her vendor booth, she likes to spend time with her grandkids, bake, and run in half marathons. We hope our guests will run right over to Freedom Star United’s booth for an added boost of patriotism during Road 2018.

To learn more about Deb and Freedom Star United, please visit their website.

 

 

 

Meet Road 2018 Teacher/Vendor and Hurricane Harvey Survivor: Cynthia England

Cynthia England is an international fiber artist, pattern designer and author who is known for many things in the quilting industry:

She has won Best of Show at the International Quilt Festival in Houston 3 times. Her latest award-winning quilt was this past Spring for her work, Reflections of Cape Town

Her quilt, Piece and Quiet was distinguished as one of “The Twentieth Century’s Best Quilts.”

She owns England Design Studios, where she promotes a technique she has developed called Picture Piecing

And as of August 25, 2017, Cynthia England is survivor of Hurricane Harvey, the catastrophic storm that sent record breaking rainfall to southeastern Texas.

Cynthia has lived in Houston, Texas her whole life. She currently lives in Dickinson, Texas; halfway between Galveston and Houston. When Hurricane Harvey hit, Cynthia and her family were at home. She remembers, “We have a two-story house. My studio and our garages are on the lower floor and all of our living space is up above. We had 7 neighbors who had one story houses come and stay with us. We watched the storm from our deck up above; very scary. I live on a creek, but our house is built up high. We still got a foot of water in the downstairs area. At one point, there were minnows in my laundry room; very freaky.”

There was lots of discussion with Cynthia and her family whether or not to leave when the mandatory evacuation was called. In the end, they felt safe because they were up high. Her neighbor had a canoe tied to their post so they could get out if they had to. Two of the neighbors staying with them were elderly; one in her eighties; one ninety. They also had an engineer and a nurse with them. So, they felt that it would be best to ride it out. They never lost power and their water was fine.

Because she is “always a quilter,” (Cynthia has been quilting since she was 13), as she and her neighbors were waiting out the storm, Cynthia taught two of the ladies that were stuck at her house how to piece a lap quilt!! Cynthia related, “They are making a Texas charm quilt and were excited about it. It took their mind off of things. We all got to know each other better and I feel like I have made some fast friends. Nobody ever bitched, moaned or cried. They took the canoe to their houses and brought back food. We even had turtle cheesecake one night. They were awesome!”

How did Hurricane Harvey affect her quilts and her business? “All of my Horn sewing furniture is toast; sewing tables, cutting tables. I had 13 book cases that were ruined; file cabinets, computer desks. A lot of my booth supplies for quilt shows are ruined. I had time to move my fabric up, so I didn’t loose any bolts. Two were damp and I have washed them. About 20 yards of my personal stash got wet, but my friend helped me wash it and I am good there. I did have business files fall into water. All my sewing machines were taken upstairs and all my quilts are fine.”

Of her Hurricane Harvey experience, Cynthia says, “All in all, we feel extremely fortunate. Because we didn’t leave we were able to start cleaning up immediately. The water went down overnight. This has been an amazing experience. Not one I want to repeat, but this too shall pass.”

England Design Studios will have a booth at Road 2018 and Cynthia will also be teaching 2003C Sandy Shore on Tuesday at Road 2018.

Cynthia hopes her students realize “how much easier her technique, Picture Piecing, is than paper piecing. There is no paper to pick out.  You work on the right side of the fabric. If you don’t sew perfect, you remove the freezer paper and re-iron. Lots of cheating!”

We wish Cindy well as she continues her Hurricane Harvey recovery and look forward to seeing her at Road to California next January.

 

 

 

Meet Road 2018 Vendor And Teacher Lora Kennedy

“Life has a way of turning you upside down”

At least that ‘s what Lora Kennedy has experienced. At one point in her life, she found herself a single mom living 200 miles away from any family during a time that her father also passed away.  As time healed these wounds, Lora married again and her new husband brought her back home to Smithboro, Illinois, five miles from the home she grew up in and where her mom still lives.

Lora and her mother, Virginia

Lora had previously worked with her mom, Virginia, in her mother’s custom drapery business. When Lora returned to Illinois, her mother had opportunities come her way that led her to buy a Nolting long arm quilting machine and open a small fabric shop on her farm. Lora fell in love with long arm quilting and has been doing it since 2005.  After a couple of years, they outgrew the shed and moved their business, Farmland Quilting & Embroidery, to town.  It was there, during a class they were teaching, that their featured product, Stable Piecing™ was born.

That was 10 years ago.  Since that time,  Stable Piecing™ has grown “tremendously.”   Designing, making samples, writing patterns, doing shows & teaching has taken Lora and Virginia around another corner that has included moving the retail location and their work back to the farm.

The newest Stable Piecing™ release is due at the time of Road to California 2018 so their booth will be featuring this new product at the show.

In addition to working in her Farmland Quilting and Embroidery vendor booth, Lora is also scheduled to teach four evening classes at Road 2018:

Wednesday: 3062C  Twisted Log CabinThursday: 4062C   Pineapples Galore

Friday: 5065C   Drunkards Path

and on Saturday: 6063C   Storm at Sea

Lora loves to teach because she gets “to see the students get to that moment where they all of a sudden get the idea and then the creative ideas start rolling.  I want my students to learn a new skill, or revisit an old one in a new way and then be able to use that in whatever they want, however they want.”

What is Lora’s best quilting tip? “To take time to do something for yourself.  Take time to just play and not expect any sort of outcome.  Just be creative and see where it leads you.”

To learn more about Lora and her company, Farmland Quilting & Embroidery, visit their webiste and Facebook Page.

Meet Road 2017 Faculty Jennifer Rapacki

Jennifer Rapacki will be teaching on Thursday, 4017R  Charm Pack Table Runnerjr-charm-pack-table-runner

On Friday 5018R and Sunday 7011R,  Weave that Quilt Backgroundjr-5018r-weave-that-quilt-background

And two half day classes utilizing technology:

Saturday Morning, 6017R  Fractal That! Quilt Design on an iPad jr-6017r-fractal-that-quilt-design-on-an-ipad

Saturday Afternoon, 6018R  Print That!  With Photoshop Elements6018r

Jennifer Rapacki learned to sew as a young girl, starting out sewing clothing. Eventually she got into couture techniques for the clothes she made for work as well as tailoring jackets for her husband.  As the workplace became more casual, Jennifer turned to quilting as a way to continue working with fabric.   Her first quilt was actually made in 1983 from a log cabin pattern kit of calico prints.   She didn’t know to do the binding and no fabric was provided for it in the kit, so she turned the backing to the front (“we didn’t have YouTube back then”). Of course, today, Jennifer knows many ways to bind a quilt!!jennifer_rapacki

Jennifer does most of her work in a quilt studio space she owns in Ventura, California because she and her husband live on a sail boat in Channel Island Harbor. She finds inspiration for her quilting “just about everywhere.”  On a recent trip to Spain and Portugal, she was continually seeing “quilt designs” on the buildings and sidewalks.  In Lisbon, she knew she was probably the only tourist continually stopping to take photos of the cobblestone sidewalks. One design is posted on her Instagram that she thought would make a great border.

A brass Stiletto is Jennifer’s favorite quilting tool. She says it’s her “3rd finger.” How did Jennifer start incorporating technology in to her quilt designs and techniques? It began in 2008 when she started playing with inkjet printing on fabric on her home printer and developed a Photoshop Elements class that she taught at the local quilt shop.  It was after her quilt guild in Santa Maria asked her to speak about what she was doing with inkjet printing on fabric and Electric Quilt in 2010, that she started offering her lecture about Modern Technology for Quilters to other quilt guilds and teaching workshops.malibuonfire

She began using an iPad for classes she was teaching at quilt shows because she wanted to reach a broader quilting audience who didn’t necessarily want to lug around a laptop to a show.  Plus, according to Jennifer, “the maturity of the iPad has brought more capability to the apps available.  I am continually looking at what apps are available to see if they can be applied to quilting design.”

One of Jennifer’s best quilting tips is how she makes stitched mitered corner binding (joining binding in the corners).  Originally used for her custom inkjet printed binding, it also allows for changing colors in the corners along with being great to use on small quilts where it would be difficult to join binding in the middle of a side.  Quilting Arts Magazine plans to publish Jennifer’s article about this technique in the Feb/Mar 2017 issue.stars_that_i_see-lg-2

What does Jennifer like most about teaching? “Learning from my students.  I think I learn as much from them as they do from me.  I especially like when they take the technique I’m teaching and go in a direction I hadn’t thought of.”

To learn more about Jennifer, please visit her Facebook Page.

 

 

Road 2016 Faculty Video Interview: Meet Cara Gulati

Cara Gulati will be teaching a Monday-Tuesday Class, 1202R  3-D Explosion.  She is also teaching a Wednesday class,  3007R Scroll-A-Luscious and a Thursday class, 4007C Radiant Suns. Cara will also be a presenter at Friday night’s Roundabout.

Recently, we videotaped our  interview with Cara for this blog post. We invite you to watch along as Cara shares her love of quilting and her excitement of being a Road 2016 teacher:

First off, we asked Cara to tell us a little about herself:

How did Cara get started in quilting? 

Where does Cara find her inspiration? 

Cara recently had a gallery show in Spain 

What is your favorite quilting tool? Cara has three!! 

What does Cara like most about teaching? 

When asked if she ever had an embarrassing teaching moment, Cara had a funny story to share: 

Cara describes the classes she will be teaching in January: 

We couldn’t end our interview without asking for Cara’s best quilting advice: 

Thanks for watching our interview with Cara Gulati. If you want to know more about Cara, please visit her website.

Road 2016 Faculty: Meet Mary Kerr

Mary will be teaching four classes: 4009R  Saving Our Treasures on Thursday; 5006R  Searching for Clues  on Friday; 6005R  A Hexed Affair on Saturday; and on Sunday, 7005R The Business of Being in Business Mary Kerr bio photo 2015

Mary Kerr has moved around. She was born in South Bend, Indiana where her father was a graduate student at Notre Dame and grew up in Athens, Georgia. When she met and married her Army husband, they moved 16 times during his 22 year Army career. While they have lived in Virginia since 2003, Mary is still moving around with her quilt activities. She has traveled extensively throughout the United States with her classes and her exhibits. As Mary says, she “love(s) this crazy quilt life!!”MK My Heart Soars

Mary has three grown children and three grandchildren; 4 year old twins (a boy and girl) and a 4 month old grandson. When she isn’t quilting, Mary loves spending time with her family and friends …..traveling, playing music, enjoying the beach, riding bikes.

How did you get started in quilting?  I grew up in a family of quilters ….two of my great grandmothers, both grandmothers and numerous aunts quilted. I began quilting myself after I was married in 1982 and started teaching in 1987.

Where do you find inspiration for your quilting?  I am often inspired by our quilting heritage including vintage patterns and designs. I love using the vintage fragments and pieces in new ways. My current work incorporates these leftovers into new and exciting quilts. I have written 5 books, three of which focus on saving these unfinished fragments in unique ways. I enjoy giving my students permission to play with vintage. MK Recycled Hexie Quilt cover (2)What has been the best class you have taken?  The class that sparked my love of quilt history was Barbara Brackman’s  Clues in the Calico workshop  that I attended in 1999.

What is the one tool you can’t live without?  My digital camera. I can play with designs until I get the one I am happiest with. Pictures in progress just add to the fun!

What do you like best about teaching? I love the moment that students fall in love with the project they are working on. I adore this quilt community and the opportunity to share our history, traditions and inspiration.MK Mary Mary fragment

What do you want your students to get out of your class?  I want them to be inspired to explore new ways and new ideas. I want to be the one who gives them permission to work with vintage textiles and the stories behind their creations.

What is your best quilting tip? You can do anything!MK Roses for Opal

Mary Kerr will also be presenting the special exhibit, Quilt as Desired” at Road 2016. This exhibit features quilts that blend the old and new quilt worlds. The best long arm quilters have taken unremarkable vintage tops and created something magical!

2016 Road Faculty: Meet Kimberly Einmo

Kimberly will be teaching three classes: 3006C Lone Starburst; 4006C Perfect Pinless Pinwheels; and 5005C Mystery QuiltKSEinmo-Studio-1a-262x300

Kimberly Einmo is used to being the only girl in the family. Growing up with two brothers, today, she is married and has two sons. How did Kimberly, the only quilter in her family, first get interested in quilting? Kimberly remembers it this way: “My mother had grown up in the depression era and hated anything to do with sewing. But she had the wisdom to know I should have some basic sewing skills ,so she signed me up for some sewing classes when I was seven years old at the local Singer Sewing shop in Massillon, Ohio. I loved sewing from the start and it wasn’t long before I was making many of my own clothes. I joined a 4-H group when I was eight years old called “Buttons and Bows” where I learned even more about garment construction and crafts such as Christmas stockings, tote bags, and holiday décor items.  I would enter my garments in the county fair every summer and I loved winning blue ribbons! For Christmas, when I was 10 years old, my parents bought me a sturdy Singer sewing machine that had zig zag and hem stitches which at that time, were quite a big deal! They also surprised me with a cabinet to hold the machine. Those were the best Christmas gifts I ever received! I still have that old Singer machine. However, it wasn’t until I walked into that quilt shop in Alexandria in 1991 when I realized you could piece blocks and quilt on a sewing machine.” Even though Kimberly can piece and quilt by hand, she loves sewing on her sewing machine so much more.KE-Variable Pinwheel Lonestar block with watermark

An award winning quilter, designer, and author, Kimberly has written five books. She also hosts four popular online classes with Craftsy.com and has appeared on several television and radio programs.

Kimberly has taught all over the world with her farthest class being in the Czech Republic where she has taught several times for the Prague Patchwork Meeting. What does she like most about teaching? Getting to know her students personally. Kimberly enjoys meeting meet each and every student and finding out a little bit about their life and why they like to quilt.

Once, when Kimberly was teaching, she had a scary experience. She was teaching a class on a Friday night at a quilt store. The store was actually closed, but the front door was unlocked. A man walked in to the front counter and told the shop owner that he had a gun and had just committed an armed robbery and that he wanted to turn himself in to the police. Kimberly overheard the conversation and grabbed all her students and locked them in a tiny bathroom while she called 911. She kept an eye on the shop owner and the man while the owner talked  very calmly to him. The police arrived and took the alleged robber. Kimberly remembers it was an incredibly tense situation. Afterwards, she and her students all giggled from nervous energy about having crammed so many women in a tiny bathroom!

What is Kimberly’s best quilting tip?  “Take your time and be very accurate as you cut and sew. Accuracy is oh-so-important to achieve great results.”KE-Fire and Ice with watermark

Kimberly hopes her students come to her classes with an open mind and are willing to try new things.  She always encourages her  students to step out of their box to learn something new. Kimberly has a personal goal to make every class she teaches a “stress-free” zone.  She wants her students to leave her classes knowing they learned a lot, accomplished a lot of actual sewing, and to go home feeling relaxed, happy, and refreshed from a great day in the classroom.KE-Magical Blocks Out of the Box

You can visit Kimberly at her website:www.kimberlyeinmo.com