myBearpaw Blog by Jo Avery

New Applique and Colour Theory workshops

We’re going to focus on the rest of our new 2014 classes at myBearpaw Craft Studio in this post.

First of all I have a new Applique class. For the first few years I offered a class where you decorated a tote bag with needle-turn applique. I have now updated this class so that we decorate a tea towel instead.
There will be a choice of the 2 designs above: birds and leaves, and flower garden. I’ve included some yo-yos and a little embroidery to the flower garden design. The applique is along a band at one edge of the tea towel. This is such a lovely hand sewing day and one I always look forward to.

Next up is a colour theory class. This has been requested by a few of my students who have been struggling with choosing colours for their quilts. I think everybody does. I often find one of the most time consuming bits of quiltmaking is the fabric planning.
I have to say that I approach colour very instinctively so it was difficult for me to think about the theory behind it. But I have been taught to use the colour wheel in a painting class I took years ago and I do find myself mentally referring to it sometimes. So in this class we will be looking at how the colour wheel works.
Instead of printing out or painting a colour wheel. I decided to make a 12 petal Dresden plate mini quilt as a teaching aid. I found a relevant quote by John Ruskin and embroidered this to the centre.

We will also be looking at colour values, and then will be putting our theories to the test by making lots of 8 inch wonky cross blocks, each a little colour study in itself. These are so quick and easy to make, I made 18 in a few hours and hope to make more soon and turn these into a rainbow quilt for the class.

So those are my ‘all new’ classes. But I am also turning the Fabric Origami class that I did for the Stitch Gathering into a full day class, where we will have more time to play and I will introduce some new Japanese embellishments. This is a corsage I made as a second class sample, it’s got a bit squashed in the peony area! That sounded a bit rude…
We are expanding our craft classes in the New Year by building a new, bigger classroom in a different part of the store. This is enabling us to put on an even wider range of classes and bring in new teachers.

Our Bag tutor, Naomi Crowley, will be taking a 5 week evening course in making a Weekend bag. This is already proving really popular and I would love to attend too, if only I wasn’t teaching patchwork at the same time in the other classroom!

Our cushion and Roman blind tutor Clare McDonald has developed this fantastic new workshop for making alphabet cushions. This will be a real masterclass in soft furnishings, by the time you have finished you will be a piping ninja!

And Fiona Calvert from PoppyMakes blog is revising another of the Stitch Gathering classes by teaching a full day workshop in Jelly Roll Quilts, using this gorgeous quilt she made for Creative Quilting magazine.

And I am very pleased to bring a new tutor in to the fold. This time for knitting.
Katherine Lymer is a very experienced knitting teacher who works for Rowan Yarns amongst others. She will be taking 3 knitting workshops: learn to knit, professional finishing techniques for knitting, and introduction to knitting with colour.
Knitting classes have been a bit neglected at myBearpaw Studio but these should give them a good kickstart. The finishing techniques class is already one of our most popular for the new term after only a few days!
And in my next post you may find out why I have become a bit more keen on knitting…

Meanwhile you can check out the full list of classes here. And as the workshops are a full day and in such a lovely city even those of you who don’t live so close could make the odd one (just saying…).


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