Friday, November 14

Victoria Findlay Wolfe at our Library!

Quilting brings out the smiles, doesn't it?! It was an amazing evening at our Henderson Public Library last night, Thursday, November 13th. There were lots of smiles! Usually on the second Thursday of the month, our "Sew and Share Quilters" group meets. But on this second Thursday of November, we were all excited to hear Victoria Findlay Wolfe speak about her quilts and process and see them! Our Friends of the Library group hosted the evening which was supported by a Legacy Arts Grant from the State of Minnesota. As guests were arriving, Judy Loewe, Friends member, snapped a few photos like this one.............

Interestingly, this is almost a multi-generation group of quilters which tells you that quilting is not a lost art. Clearly, I'm the older one in the group, then there is Nichole (right) and Victoria (left). And then there's Lydia in pink and blue, who is the youngest member of our group. She and her mom, Nichole, took a beginning quilt class that I offered at the library. Baby sister, Kathryn, will get lessons from Lydia. It is delightful to know that the art of quilting is being enjoyed by young and old!



Victoria set up her display of books and products. I was planning to get a copy of her book, but when I saw the templates I knew I wanted those, too!
















It was a bitterly cold night, even for here in Minnesota. I think the temps were only in the teens. That cold weather, though, did not stop quilters who wanted to hear Victoria speak and see her quilts. They came from right here in Henderson and nearby Gaylord, Arlington, LeSueur and Belle Plaine. And they came from Lakeville and Eden Prairie in the Twin Cities! Even a slight road repair detour did not keep them away!

And then it was time to begin...........Now I'm not going to give away the stories that Victoria shares in her program because I don't want to spoil it for any of you that might get to hear her speak some day. I'll just say that she is telling us the story of how this lovely jacket came to her. It made her smile and we enjoyed the story.


Victoria's program is a combination of Powerpoint presentation and the actual quilts that are featured in her book "15 Minutes of Play".  I liked the fact that she shared about the quilt first and then she would pull that quilt out of her suitcase!

Victoria gave permission to share photos of her quilts so I took photos the best I could. Judy was her helper and she takes better pictures than I do. Maybe I should have been helper instead but Judy had so much fun studying the quilts that she is glad she was asked to help! I am so sorry that I don't remember the name of each quilt. I would look at the book but......well, I'll tell you about that in a minute. I loved this one with the yellow polka dot..........

There were lots of ooohs and aaahs when she held up this quilt.........



Here she is describing the process that led to the next quilt..........


......this stunning large hexagon quilt. Once again, lots of oooohs and aaaahs!


It seemed that each quilt was more colorful and unique than the previous quilt! Here Victoria is answering a question from the audience.........


I almost squealed with delight when I saw this next quilt pop up on the screen and then she pulled it from the suitcase! I ooohed and ahhed and was so happy to get to see her quilt "Double Edged Love"! This quilt took Best of Show at QuiltCon in Houston in 2013.


And then there was another Double Wedding Ring, this one which is featured on the cover of her new book.


The book will be available in January of 2015. Check out Victoria's website to pre-order. 

This large Double-Wedding Ring with it's New York Beauty points was really amazing!
I happened to be standing next to Lydia, who had brought notebook and pencil so she could take notes about Victoria's lecture.............
when she turned to me and said "I think she/Victoria likes Double Wedding Ring quilts" and I replied "I think you are right"! I asked her about the notes she was taking and she said she hoped Victoria would sign the page when the program was over. Another smile!

Each quilt had such a story behind it. This one incorporates a bit of something that is a reminder of Victoria's grandmother. Her grandmother was a huge influence in Victoria's love of quilting.


There were lots of smiles and lots of laughter during the program which was full of information and stories and inspiration and quilts, quilts, quilts! And when the program was finished, Judy took her camera and snapped a photo of the two of us.

Several people asked how I connected with Victoria and got her to come all the way out to Henderson. Well, we talked about that and decided it probably started when we both began blogging about the same time. I remember that her posts were always colorful. She put out a call for donation quilts for her BASICS quilt drive so I made a kid's quilt in memory of my quilting friends, Cindy Mark and Cathy Wright, and sent it off to her. It made me smile to do that. Then we met for lunch a couple years ago when she was back in Minnesota. I shared some of my vintage quilts and said if she had time on a future trip, come for a visit and also we could schedule a program. So, last year around Christmas time, she sent me a message that she was planning a visit to teach some workshops and do some lectures, would I like to have her do a program then, too. I said "yes, of course!" and within days we had our next Friends of the Library meeting and the plans were set in place to have her come and speak!! Do you have any idea, how much fun it has been to know that she was coming to speak at our library? I knew how much people would enjoy hearing how she approaches her quilting projects and seeing the end results. I'm pretty sure that everyone who attended was delighted that they could attend! I overheard one woman say "Isn't she amazing?" Made me smile. 

With the program over, it was time to shop...........





My friend, Sue, who is not a quilter, was so excited, so inspired by the colors and fabrics in Victoria's quilts. She had to take a closer look at them.........

She took note of the yellow piping on this Double Wedding Ring quilt. I see her making one of these colorful quilts!
And, we can make one together because Victoria "gifted" me with a set of the Double Wedding Ring templates that I was eyeing. I didn't get a copy of her book as she ran out of them, so she'll send one later. Always nice to have something to look forward to. Something that will bring a smile one day in the future. And speaking of the future.........Lydia got the autograph she wanted from Victoria. She is a future quilter for sure. This past summer, I helped her with a little project for her Clover Buds 4-H project. She has the gift of sewing in her!

There were treats and coffee for everyone, too. Here is our Friends president, Mary Pilling, and our young-at-heart member, Doris Wigand.
And then it was time to pack up all the supplies and the quilts. We watched as Victoria folded each one just so.........and Doris wasn't sure Victoria would get them all in the suitcase.........but Voila!! she did!

With quilts packed, Victoria was ready to travel on to her next workshop on Friday morning. We enjoyed a cup of tea when we got back to my house and had a nice relaxing chat. I have to be honest, I was a wee bit nervous about her visit because on Tuesday afternoon, my husband said to me......"What are you going to cook when she is here, or do you plan to go to the RoadHaus to eat?"
And that was when I realized I had forgotten all about the need to eat! I was so busy cleaning my house and making it look all quilty good, that I forgot about food! Ah, when the mind gets focused on quilting, cooking just goes out the window. LOL! But, I decided to cook because it was just a little more relaxing. And that it was. Especially when we topped off our meals with a little Baklava or with a cup of tea. We didn't finish it all so guess who will enjoy the leftovers?.............
as Miss Piggy would say........."Moi!"
That's all for now. Have a lovely weekend! Stay warm if you are coping with the Midwest Deep Freeze!!
Sandi

7 comments:

Pat said...

OH, my......how exciting and what fun!!!! I'm not at all surprised that you'd be the one to get Victoria to come and do a program....and I'm sure everyone who attended is very grateful to you. I love your young quilter, Lydia. Based on the photos, I'd say my favorite quilt was the one that was inspired by her memories of her grandmother. (Yes...I'm writing this after 3 in the morning.......my "souvenir" from my days in NJ is a cold and the coughing was keeping me from sleeping. How nice to get up, though, and find this wonderful blog post!)

Diane Wild said...

Thanks for sharing, Sandi. Wish I was braver to drive in frigid, dark nights. A beautiful program.

BillieBee (billiemick) said...

What fun!!

Needled Mom said...

Oh gosh....that looks like a blast! I loved seeing her quilts too.

Cheryl's Teapots2Quilting said...

She said on her blog that she was going to wear her double knit quilt jacket. It's so cute on her. Her quilts are stunning.

Sarah Jeffries said...

Oh wow! Sounds like an awesome time! Congrats on being in the planning of such an event! I enjoyed all the photos. Thanks for sharing, Sarah

Barb Mader said...

I am so appreciative of your work to get Victoria to present in Henderson. I almost didn't go because of the cold but am I glad I went. I started making fabric with scraps last night to make some Christmas blocks. It really is fun and relaxing.

"Peace can be found in the piecing of a quilt."
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