Sunday, April 19, 2009

Miss Mary's Charm School.

I had the privilege of attending Miss Mary's Charm School class last Friday night, from 6:00-9:00 PM. I had a wonderful time. This is Miss Mary. She looks sweet, doesn't she? Don't let appearances fool you.

The premise of the class is this: you bring your sewing machine, and any other quilting tools you feel you will need, your choice of fabric and a willingness to be led along the garden path. Why? Because the class is built layer by layer, a mystery unfolding like the cloth before you. It's devious, I tell you!

You are given the directions for cutting first.

The result is a stack of fabric squares and a tidy pile of scraps. Mmmm, I love scraps. I think they are so pretty all rumpled together. Plus, they rather spark the imagination as to how to give them a new purpose. I'm sure there is one out there for even the tiniest of pieces.

Next step in the still-unknown project is to pin, pin, pin. You know how much I love pinning! So do the Charm Girls!

Then the sewing begins, and the Charm Girls are still in the dark as to what they are creating, other than it is a quilt top. All the while conversation is flowing, laughter is bubbling and the curiosity level would have killed a cat within a mile of the shop.

These tops were being made for sons, grandsons, daughters and friends. I love seeing what everyone puts together. It inspires me to make bold choices that I normally would not make when choosing fabrics.

For this project, the Charm Girls could choose between a precut layer cake stack or cutting their own. The above is Mary Engelbreit's Recipe for Friendship, one of my favorite lines. Totally cute stuff. Once the stitching is done, it's time to lay out the blocks in order. Miss Mary kindly gives a guide for laying out the pieces. Not everything can be a mystery! Aren't these tiny frogs from Lakehouse Dry Goods adorable?

Sometimes the layout process can prove to be a bigger challenge than first thought. Directionality of the pattern on the blocks makes assembly a bit like putting together a 5000 piece puzzle in fifteen minutes.

But, it can be done!

Wendy finally conquered her Taxi blocks to make her quilt top fit snug as a bug in a rug.

Finally it is time to sew the blocks and rows together, press the seams and magically the quilt top comes together right before your eyes.

What? You didn't think I was going to spoil the surprise did you? I will give you a hint- the name of the pattern has something to do with this buttery, delicious treat.

And lest you think that all the Charm Girls came to quilt, I give you Evelyn's hands, knitting furiously to make a sweater with some lovely terra cotta colored yarn. Creativity knows no boundaries and Miss Mary's Charm School encourages it on all levels.

If you get the chance to attend a class with Miss Mary, you will be guaranteed to be surprised, entertained, encouraged and fed emotionally and physically. But most of all, you will be surrounded by a group of women who you will grow to love. I think that is the best thing of all.
To see what projects are scheduled for Miss Mary's Charm School, please visit the A Scarlet Thread website. There is bound to be something there just for you.


Betty said...

When do we get to see yours? I'm already anxious!

Miss Mary's class looks like fun. If I lived closer, I would attend and just serve refreshments or something, since I don't sew. What a great way to spend an evening!

BlueRidge Boomer said...

Ahhhh.......come on!!!

I want'a see it....please....pretty please....

Great post ...i loved it!!

Can't wait.....LindaMay

Thistle Cove Farm said...

looks like a ton of fun!