Melinda’s Renegade Thread Play Class

Melinda Bula does a lot of quilting – a lot. Here is the back of the three zinnias quilt! Gorgeous, isn’t it?

I am working on being a better machine quilter and so I decided that I should take her Renegade Thread Play class at the Houston show. It was an all day class, but I’ll tell you now that it should have been a two-day class, or we should have fused something to quilt before class. In the morning, Melinda talked about her quilt making journey and how she approaches quilting the final piece. She showed us how to get started with our names and had prepared fused sampler pieces for us to work on.

She likes shiny rayon and bigger stitches so that the stitching shows. One thing she likes to quilt is vine-like shapes and then she goes over them again. And in the flowers and leaves, she outlines and then outlines some more and it’s a great effect. Here’s what I got done before lunch. Loop de loops are a pattern that I am comfortable with, so it went well, and the veins in the leaves weren’t too hard for me.

After lunch we came back and got started on the project. Melinda gave us a sunflower pattern to fuse and cut and iron. Here is her sample.

And here is the back!

Though the sunflower is not as detailed as the zinnia, there was plenty of work to be done and I finished fusing at 4:15. Class was over at 5 and I was tired. I decided that it was not the time to start the quilting, which is often frustrating for me, not to mention using a strange machine can be difficult as well. (No one had time to quilt!) Here is my sunflower, made using some fabrics that I got in a Carol Fallert class eons ago, when she did her own dyeing.

We did not have a fabric kit for the sunflower, so here are some of the other colors that people chose. This was the woman at my table.

And the lady behind me. Of course I adored these colors!

And these juicy red-purples were across the room! Melinda said that the sunflower done in reds looks very much like a poinsettia and I think I may try that.

In the packet of information she gave us, a pattern for pansies was included. I love the quilt – the yellow-green background that Melinda chose along with all the bright color combinations really sings!I guess that was something she’s done in the past. I love pansies and their small size would have made them ideal for class, not to mention all the amazing color combinations they come it. I think I may give some pansies a try.

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