Sunday, January 31, 2010

Ricky Tims Super Seminar, Part Two

At the January FQG meeting, we made an attempt to give you a small sample of the many things we learned at the Seminar. We barely scratched the surface. As well as the presentations by Ricky, Libby and Alex, we also had a session with Bob Purcell, President of Superior Threads. He taught us a great deal about threads in a very short time! Here are just a few of the things we learned:

* Not all threads are colorfast, in particular, hand-dyed threads and some rayons.

* Throw away your nylon thread. If you want an "invisible" monofilament thread, buy polyester. Nylon melts, gets brittle after time and it "yellows". If your spool is labelled polyamide, you've got nylon..

* Always use a size 90/14 Topstitch or Metallic needle (deeper groove and bigger eye) and loosen the top tension when stitching with metallic threads.

* When deciding what weight of thread you will use for machine quilting, remember it depends whether you want the thread to blend or stand out. "Heavy to show, thin to blend."

* Polyester thread will not tear your fabric.

* All sensitive threads prefer a vertical spool pin.

* Problems with specialty threads can usually be traced to these causes: 1. Quality (buy good quality thread). 2. Needles (select the right type and put in a new needle with each new project). 3. Tension (running your machine always at the same tension setting is like buying a new TV and never changing the channel). 4. Condition of machine (keep your machine clean and in good condition).

Lastly, here are a few quotes from the Seminar sessions which are good reminders to us all:

~ Nothing is ever a failure if you learn from it.
~ You have to become your own Quilt Police.

~ Quilts take a really long time to finish when you're not working on them.

~ Finish the ones that deserve it, and realize some deserve to die.

~ The best gift God has given you is TIME : know how to use it.

This barely scratches the surface of all we learned at the Seminar. Remember the Seminar will be held in Hyannis Massachusetts in September 2010. If you would like to attend, leave a comment with your name here, or get in touch with Linda Hubbard (455-1825) . We will be "collecting" names and hopefully get enough for a group registration and a significant savings to you. (You will not in any way be obligated to travel together as a group. )
Just a reminder, you can click on these photos for a closer look.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Ricky Tims Super Seminar

The January Guild program informed us all of the Ricky Tims Super Seminars. These take place 4 times a year around the U.S. They do not come to Canada, unfortunately (too much hassle at the border with quilts and inventory for sale) but they do try to hold at least one of the Seminars each year within a reasonable driving distance for many Canadians. Five FQG members have already attended RT Seminars. You could be next! (We attended the Seminar in the spring of 2008 in Glens Falls NY. Photos shown here are from the Glens Falls Seminar. You can click on these for a much closer look.)

The Seminar is 2.5 days in length and always follows the same schedule, beginning on a Thursday afternoon and finishing on Saturday at 5:30pm. There are 10 sessions, 6 done by Ricky, and 2 each by Alex Anderson and Libby Lehman. Sessions are 1.5 hours each, broken up by generous "breaks"during which you can shop, get a closeup look at the quilts, or get an autograph or a photo taken with Ricky, Alex or Libby. The sessions are done theatre style - ie you don't have to bring anything other than a pen and your enthusiasm - no sewing machines to carry, no fabric to prepare, etc. You sit back in a comfy chair and listen, watch and learn! All the action takes place on a large stage with a giant screen behind- whatever is being done at a machine or on the cutting table is video'd and projected on the screen so you can see exactly what's happening. Every seat is a good seat! You don't even have to take notes as you are provided with a Syllabus of notes - 125 pages or so, complete with diagrams and color photos. Topics covered by Ricky include: Quilting Caveman Style, Convergence Quilts, Design Development, Flip 'n' Sew and Paper Piecing, Rhapsody Quilts, No Pins Precision Curved Piecing, No Pins Set -in Corners and Circles, Kaleidoscopes, Applique, Machine Quilting, Piped Bindings, Binding the Quilt by Machine, and Scalloped Bindings. Alex Anderson does two sessions on the topics of Hand Quilting and Fabric Selection. Libby Lehman's sessions are on Machine Applique and Sheer Ribbon Illusions. All sessions are enjoyable; info is presented clearly and concisely in a very organized manner, and presenters are happy to answer questions from the audience. There is lots of humour and it is very evident that all presenters are enjoying themselves as much as the audience is!

During the breaks, you can wander throught the quilt displays and see the quilts "up close and personal". You can shop at Ricky's booth for his books, DVD's, CD's, hand-dyed fabrics and notions that he likes and uses. You can get autographs and/or have your photo taken with Ricky, Libby and/or Alex. Because Bernina is a major Seminar sponsor, there is a local quilt shop/Bernina dealer booth where one can purchase Bernina machines, accessories and fabrics, threads, etc. (We counted over 100 machines sold, including one to a 101 year old quilter in attendance!!)

Besides being an amazing quilter and teacher, Ricky is also an incredibly talented musician, and puts on a wonderful concert on Friday evening, showing off his talents for playing a number of instruments. (This concert is open to the public, so if you are travelling with your husband or someone else, they can purchase a ticket for this concert.)

The next Super Seminar that is close to us will be held in Hyannis, Cape Cod, Mass. on September 2-4, 2010. FQG will be a promotional partner, meaning simply that we have agreed to help advertise this event. We will be placing more info on this Blog later on, and in our April newsletter. FQG members will also be receiving several emails in the spring. If you would like more info now, check out Ricky's website by clicking here or go to and click on "Quilt Pages", then "Seminars". If you think you'd like to attend this Seminar, you will notice that the cost is less if you have a group. If you register singly, the cost is $219.00 US funds. If there is a group of 2-9 people, you save $25.00 and pay $194.00 US each. A group of 10 or more pays $179.00 each. So let us know if you are interested in going; we will be taking names to do a group registration. Leave a comment here or contact Linda at (506) 455-1825. This is open to any quilters in our area, not only FQG members. Stay tuned for more info on our next post...

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Reminder of Guild Meeting - Tuesday January 18 at 7:30

Be sure to attend the Fredericton Quilters Guild meeting this Tuesday. The meeting starts at 7:30 sharp. For those who have quilting questions, or need advice, or help with a problem, Lois Mehan will be available to help you at 7 pm.

The program has members telling you about their experiences when they attended the Ricky Tims Super Seminars. You don't want to miss this program.

Want to become a member of the Fredericton Quilters Guild?

If you would like to become a member of the Fredericton Quilters' Guild, we would love to have you, no matter your skill level. Please contact Jeanne-Kaye Speight at 452-1875 or email Jeanne-Kaye at

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Workshop spaces available - "Victorian Noteables"

On Saturday, January 23rd, Linda Hubbard will teach our next workshop - "Victorian Noteables". There are still a few workshop spaces left, and you can sign up at our guild meeting on Tuesday, January 19th. The fee is $25.00 plus a $12.00 kit fee. The kit will consist of pretty much everything you will need, except your machine, cords, etc. and a spool of thread! Kit contents: 2 cards with cutouts and matching envelopes, patterns, precut fabrics, embroidery threads, beads, needles and perhaps a few other embellishments.

This class is designed to be a quick basic intro to Crazy Quilting so that you can try the technique without investing a lot of money in fancy fabrics and embellishments. You will learn
the basics of CQ design, hand embroidery, and embellishment techniques. And, best of all, you will go home with a finished product! You will have one card totally finished and if the second one is not totally done, it should be very close to completion.

UPDATE, Jan. 19th - This class has one space available

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Happy New Year

Happy New Year. We hope you had a great holiday and are getting back into the swing of things. Watch this blog this coming week for guild meeting information, upcoming workshops and other happenings in the guild.

Did any of you get fun quilty things for Christmas? I did. I got a Layer Cake. Now, I'm searching for ways to use it.

Have you seen the Moda Bake Shop? Various contributors prepare patterns using Moda products and share them with blog readers. One of my favorite recent patterns is this wall quilt called "I'm Blushing". It's made mostly using Jelly Roll strips. What a cute layout for a quilt!

Did you get a Kindle for Christmas? You absolutely must make this Bookkeeper (or Kindle Keeper). The pattern was developed to hold a kindle or a similar sized novel. I've made this recently for a friend who has a kindle and it's absolutely adorable.

And finally, if you don't know what a Jelly Roll, a Honey Bun or Layer Cake consists of, check out this conversion chart from the Moda Bake Shop. You can make your own equivalents.
Happy Stitching