Monday, April 02, 2007

Ricky Tims is coming.....

(Photos of Pink Flower Prelude by Ricky Tims; California Celebration by Alex Anderson; Ribbon quilt by Libby Lehman)
Ricky Tims is coming! The announcement came months ago and hit our small local quilt shop like a wild fire. The seminar was to be 3 days long and Alex Anderson and Libby Lehman were going to be speakers, too. And they are going to hold the event at the California Center for the Arts in Escondido, only about 20 miles from our little town.

My thoughts about the seminar:I would have to take vacation time; the price seemed high to me to being with; driving down to Escondido would be a pain. But I got caught up in the frenzy. I could learn a lot from this trio of quilting professionals. When I broke the price down, it compared favorbly with any quilt classes I have taken. The venue was easy to get to, free parking and the folks at the center are so friendly and accomodating. Even after I paid for it, months in advance, I had mixed feelings. As the time drew closer, I began to doubt that I would get anything out of it. I am NOT an artsy quilter. What was I thinking?? Once I agreed to commute with a friend, I couldn’t get out of it. OK, let’s go.

The Setup:

A quilt class… well, really it’s a seminar…. No, it’s a Super Seminar. Whatever it’s called, sitting in a theatre, with 474 other quilters, did not strike me as being a learning experience. The speakers were on the stage, sewing machine (Bernina, of course since they were a sponsor), video camera, computer, and a huge screen at the ready. Registration was well-organized and a snap. The credit for that goes to the Canyon Quilters Guild of San Diego ( who organized this event.

Rules and books:
The seminar had about a dozen separate topics presented by Ricky (7), Alex (2), and Libby (2). The spiral bound notebook with lots of photos covered e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g thing in the seminar. Timing was strict. Ricky believes in starting and stopping on time. If you show up late, you will miss something. No pictures during the seminar as it is distracting to everybody. And turn off your cell phones. He actually stops speaking if a phone accidentally goes off and waits while everybody turns and looks at the culprit. That is a rule I can live with. He even asked that we not use perfume for the next two days since it might bother your neighbor. It was like he asked me what I thought the rules should be. Thanks, Ricky. There was a gallery and a seminar store but those were closed while the seminar was going on. He wanted the focus to be the training.

The star of the show is Ricky Tims, the cowboy quilter, starts his show with a big “WooHoo”. Lots of energy and enthusiasm. It was contagious. Alex Anderson, a hand-quilter originally, is more about traditional quilting. One of her sessions covered how much of what fabric to buy. Backgrounds, strips, novelty, light, medium, dark, etc. Her method was an eye opener for me. She introduced me to the phenomenon of the bridge fabric. What a concept.

Libby Lehman was a surprise for me. The only thing that I knew about her was that Superior had some thread with her name on it. Libby is a thread artist, a humorist and a computer geek all rolled into one. Her quilts have a foundation of traditional quilt piecing. Then she dresses these quilts up with her thread play. They are stunners. She is a great speaker with a quirky sense of humor. She showed us how to work the magic. I bought her book, Threadplay.

Ricky taught us about caveman quilting which is like the flower piece named Chantelle.(Show and Tell)

He showed us how to make a convergence quilt of our very own. You really have to tear into it.


One of my favorites is Nude Shoe Resting. If I remember correctly, it is supposed to be a take-off on the Renoir painting Nude Bather Resting. I love the background colors in the bath tiles and the cute little dachshund curled up on the bathmat. This is such a fun piece.
Nude Shoe Resting

And of course, his Bohemian Rhapsody quilt is so vibrant. I wish that I could have seen this one up close and personal. It won Best of Show at Quilting on the Waterfront in Duluth. There is over 10,000 yards of red silk thread in this quilt.

Bohemian Rhapsody

My favorite? It is the mono-chromatic quilt named Long Way Home. The quilting is done in a spiral from an obscure pieced house on the left center. Look for the roof with a window under it. I just feel drawn into this quilt.

Long Way Home

All of us received our Doctorate of Threadology from Bob Purcell, the owner of Superior Thread. Both Bob and Mother Superior were there. He always gives an interesting and memorable presentation. I saw him for the first time at Innovations 2006. And of course, I love his thread.

One of the sponsors is Bernina Sewing Machines. San Diego's Sew Hut is the premier Bernina dealer. Harriet and her daughter, Ingrid and all their crew were on hand for the seminar. They brought lots of machines to try out. I think all but one were sold during the seminar. My friend, Christi bought the Bernina 640E. It does everything, piecing, embroidery and quilting with the new BSR (stitch regulator) invented by a local Ramona man. Christi loves her new machine. It was autographed by Ricky, Alex and Libby. Hmmm, a collector's item.
Harriet,Christi and the new baby


Ramona-quilter said...

This is a test. If this had been a real comment, you would have had to write something about the blog article instead of just reading what everybody else had to say. ;-)

Michellesews said...

Hello Ramona Quilter! I lived in Ramona 2.5 years ago, now in Texas. I took a few classes at the new quilt shop with the big purple sign! I loved it too. I just ordered a Mega Quilter and Next Generation Frame from my Pfaff dealer, will arrive the 26th. I used to belong to the Calvary Chapel, first service. Oh, how I miss Ramona, you cannot even imagine, even after these 2.5 years, my heart hurts if I let myself dwell on it. What a perfect little town. I lived in SDCE at the end of Del Amo, 3rd house from the end on the right. We come back to Ramona every year or so, will be there in September this year. STill have family in Fallbrook and lots of wonderful freinds in Ramona. I now live on a ranch out in the middle of nowhere so I have had lots of time to quilt and get into quilting. I am working 2 days a week to support my habit. I love all kinds of sewing, any kind. I love your quilts and I just WISH we could have known each other when I was there, we have so much in common. Maybe we will meet at a quilt show someday! Take care. Michelle

My life has changed in the last couple of years - some bumps, I retired from quilting, and then I moved to Texas. I'm anxious to see what new adventures await me in the next phase of my life.

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Ramona, California, United States
I started quilting when a quilt shop opened in our little town in January 2004. I have been hooked ever since.

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This is called Fruit Cocktail

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