Quilt University has a huge variety of courses, ranging from traditional quilting to surface design, dyeing, quilt design, right through to photographing your quilts and making money quilting. They have seven new classes starting each week, which vary in length. There is a free mini sample class on designing borders which you can take to see if you like their way of working.
Like Joggles’ classes, you are given a password and can download each lesson – one lesson is made available each week. There is also a forum where you can talk to other members of the class and the class teacher.
If you go to the homepage you can click on any of the class titles and it will take you to a fuller description and another link to the class supply list – often looking at these supply lists you can get a better idea about whether a course is for you!
The website also has biographies and galleries of teachers’ work and students’ work from previous classes. It has a ‘student commons’ forum area where you can discuss general topics even if you are not enrolled on any specific classes. I’ve spent many a happy hour poking round there!
I have taken two classes with them and found them both valuable and informative. I took ‘Journal Quilts’ with Lily Kerns, where she took us through various ways of approaching design and putting personal things into these quilts. We looked at mind mapping words, visual mindmapping (taking lines and playing with them is what I remember about this one but I must re-read it!), looking at objects from a new perspective. In the last lesson she covered what to do with the journal quilts, ways of joining them and mounting them. One of the things I found most interesting and helpful was that for each lesson she interviewed a number of quilters who had taken part in the Journal Quilts Project in previous years, asking them about their inspiration and how they went about designing their journal quilts and showing us photos of the quilts themselves.
These are a couple of quilts I made arising from this course. The first is ‘Cocoon’ made from mindmapping the word cocoon and it contains words which I got from the mindmap which I associated with ‘cocoon’.
The next is a quilt I made resulting from playing with lines which I did from the second class:
The discussion for this course was particularly interesting, as people explored issues which came up from their mindmapping and how they could portray them visually.
The next course I have done there is Elements in Fabric with Linda Schmidt. She taught us to reproduce the effects of air, water, fire and earth using unconventional materials like cellophane, angelina, glitter… lots of painting and burning edges and melting with a heat gun! Her lessons were very comprehensive and thorough, and as well as learning about all of this I learnt how best to press a quilt so it lies nice and flat, even with all these meltable objects on it! Lots of helpful hints about design principles and what needles to use with what metallic threads….
Here is the fire quilt I made, which incidentally I just entered into Quilt University’s Virtual Quilt Show for quilts made as a result of classes taken there, so click on the link and go and vote for me!!! Pleeeezzeee….