Home from AQS Des Moines, Iowa

Last Tuesday I drove to Des Moines to attend the AQS -American Quilters Society - show there. I just came home last night. One of the instructors was Joen Wolfrom, and I have always wanted to take a color class from her. My wish was granted. I actually took 2 classes with her, one was on landscapes, and the second was a log cabin class, but much of the class was spent on color theory. I've tried multiple times to put luminosity and luster (light and reflected light) in my quilts, without much success. I think I understand it a bit better now.

AQS was very clear that personal pictures of the quilts in the exhibits should NOT be posted on the web. I think it is okay to post these pictures of our class in progress on landscapes.

This was the first project. We were learning how to put distance, as well as luminosity, in a landscape. Mine is the middle one in the top row, with the crooked peninsula. I can't seem to glue straight. It was so interesting to see them up on the wall, and to discuss and critique them. It was a very non-threatening environment, and I think we learned a whole lot of info in a very short time. I have every one of Joen's books, and have studied them, but it was so much better to take the class, see examples, and have suggestions on how to improve them to produce the look we wanted.

This is the second project. For both of them she gave us a printed simple outline, and we cut and glued fabric in place. Mine is the last one on the lower right. I found luminosity! Interestingly, I was ready to give up (we only had 30 minutes), but Joen came by and commented on how great the mountains looked! She said just put in a straight line and your meadow (she already knew I had that fabric). Amazing what feedback can do!

The second day was a different class, but she combined color theory into an offset log cabin - I'm not sure that's the name, but the logs are different sizes so it has the illusion of curves. She gave individual help on picking out the fabrics, and I watched everyone's. I didn't care if I made any blocks or not, I was just thirsty for information. When we did show and tell at the end of class - with discussions of what worked - I commented that I wished her books (we were talking about Color Play) had more on luminosity and luster, with lots of pictures. She told us that the editors didn't want to include any of the last chapter where she covered these. I want her to write a whole book on it! I hope C&T is listening!

I also had two "lectures", one with Judy Martin, and one with a show and tell with Eleanor Burns. They were both excellent, and Eleanor is a "hoot".

Friday was my last day, and travel day, so I looked at all the quilts, rather quickly, and strolled by the vendors, just stopping at the ones I had specifically wanted to see. I picked up some cones of Sew Fine thread at the Superior booth, hand-dyed gradations of yellow from Joy's, and a few notions. On my way home I was within 12 miles of Winterset, IA, so stopped at the Fons & Porter warehouse sale. For me, I was very good. I picked up 3 bright but dark blue pieces for Quilts of Valor, some toned soft colors for backgrounds on the Offset Log Cabin, and one black and red batik to finish a project for my daughter. It's amazing how Stashbusters changed my buying pattern. I had already shopped my stash for these items - they weren't there - so only bought them. I only spent $78, so thought I did well, especially with the financial climate.

This was a great trip, even if I did go alone (company in the car would have been nice). The great thing was that I could spend 3 days not hearing about the election or stock market! Being home is nice, too!
Happy quilting,

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Ann said…
I also went to the Des Moines show this weekend, just for Saturday, to shop and ogle the quilts. It's so inspiring to see the work of these talented quilters. I just wish I had enough vacation time to have taken classes, too.
Alycia said…
Sounds Wonderful!! Glad you had a great time!

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