Earlier this week, I had the privilege of attending an all-day Becky Goldsmith (Piece O’ Cake Designs) applique class sponsored by my guild. If you ever get the chance to take one of her classes, DO IT! Becky is a wonderful teacher, sharing her 20+ years of experience clearly and concisely and providing encouraging feedback on student efforts. She used a video camera positioned upside down (as we were quick to point out) so that her hands would be projected as if we were looking down at ours.
Only having done one applique border, I am still quite a novice at this technique. I had never used a vinyl overlay before for positioning pieces. And I had hopefully not developed an unalterable habit of holding my needle sideways as I do in hand piecing. Becky showed us how she holds her needle with the very tip of her index finger to get total control of inserting the needle straight down beside the applique piece. Below left my guild mate Kathy demonstrates. On the right are front and back photos of my leaf. I was amazed at my own tiny stitches just from holding my needle differently.
Here is the block (Becky’s) we were working on (a 12″ version of Piece O’ Cake’s original design–Passion Flowers – Block #4) and on the right, how much–or little–I got done (shown with vinyl overlay.) All students were commenting that our spouses would not believe we spent 6 hours doing THIS.
Check out Becky’s Passion Flowers quilt which we all got to see in person. I was noting the small stitches when someone behind me asked “What stitches?” Truly they are practically invisible! Becky also does her own machine quilting and I just had to share a few close-ups of her custom work.
Lastly, another guild buddy Sandy using her extra eyes for needle threading. Don’t you love her red pieced border? She got inspired after seeing the quilt at our guild meeting the day before the class!