Sunday, October 12, 2014

Classes with Nancy DiDonato

Friday, Nancy DiDonato began her day and a half teaching at the Q.U.I.L.T. Delmar Guild.  In case you are not familiar with her work, she is definitely an art quilter, and one from whom I was most anxious to learn.

The fist day she spent most of the time talking to us about alternate "materials" - those quotation marks are because she didn't mean fabric.  She meant paper, wire, paint sticks, and industrial cast offs.  Okay, I'll add a visual to make it easier to understand:

This is the center medallion in one of her pieces.  I missed what she said about the center curly-queue because I was falling all over about the wire work.  She just takes any kind of wire that is easily bendable, twists it however she wants, and couches it to her work.  It's dead simple, and I love it!  Of course, I immediately twisted my piece of wire into non-repetitive shapes and declared them the antler's on a magical deer and as he bounded across the landscape, the wind and snow swirl from his antlers to hide his hoof prints . . . well, there's a story there.  

Nancy was very kind and refrained from patting me on the head.

She had us make origami boxes of the kind she made, took foam blocks, covered them with silk ties from the 60's, embellished them, mounted them on gold circles, and:

Voila!  These are a few of the boxes among several more in this quilt.  

Weaving fabric was another technique she shared.  That may seem very simple (and it is easy to do), but what I never thought about was the difference between weaving fabric strips that have been cut with a rotary cutter and those that have been torn.  She had examples of the two methods using the same fabrics and the difference between the two was remarkable and easy to see.

She shared many other things like the uses for tulle, odd things like discarded corrugated vent ducts, Tyvek house insulation - and all those other things I watched our builders throw away without another thought!

Finally the next day she showed us how to design "wonky" log cabin blocks.

This is a gorgeous purse she made with beads, stones, and silk.  The body of the purse is done in a wonky log cabin - the central square is a metallic, sparkly copper color.  I wanted to know how to make those:

This is how it is done.  The upper left is an example of a square (like the two on the evening bag), then I practiced drafting an equilateral triangle, followed by notes on how to draw an octogon, and finally a scalene triangle.  

The best part of that class was that she taught us how to draft such figures for ourselves.

I was and am in Heaven!

1 comment:

  1. You have definitely found your place in the quilting world. Have fun with it. Looks very interesting and I do love the boxes covered in ties!