Sunday 27 March 2016

Improv with Gwen Marston

Gwen Marston was the deciding factor for me attending QuiltCon this year. I've read her books for years and love her work. I decided that if I got into her class, I would go. And I did. Well, my husband is the real hero of this story.

See, I had a meeting at the time that registration for workshops opened for QuiltCon last year so I wasn't going to be able to register myself. My husband was going to be home that day though so I sat him down the night before, made him watch the "How to register for QuiltCon" video that the Modern Quilt Guild released and gave him my wish list of classes. We went over what order to try registering. Yes, I even had plan B and Cs for him, but I threw out plans D, E and F (you're welcome, honey). My top choices were classes with Gwen Marston and Melissa Averinos. He was such a good sport about it; mostly he found it so bizarre and amusing. I think.

The next morning as I left for work, I told him, "there's no pressure and I'll be happy with whatever options you can get for me." I don't think he really believed me. At 10:07, he sent me a text that I got my top choices. Eeeek! It took all of my self-control not to jump up and down at work when I got that  text, but there may have been an impassioned "yes" accompanied by a fist pump. I am a professional, you know. ;)

So now I was going to QuiltCon and I was going to take classes with Gwen and Melissa. Woo hoo!

I'll do another post for the class with Melissa, but today, I'll share some photos about the class with Gwen Marston. It did not disappoint!

Gwen's small studies:

One of my favourites of Gwen's small studies:

Another favourite:

Gwen demonstrating some of the techniques she taught us: 

Trying to get out of my comfort zone with this colour palette:

A little better:

Some progress on the different units:

Cute, eh?

Playing with placement:

Starting to come together:

Gwen and me! Eeek!

Some of my classmates work -- I can't remember who did what, but aren't they fabulous? Loved seeing the variety of work.

If you ever get a chance to take a class with Gwen Marston, take it. You will not regret it!


  1. Well done ! I like very much your small study. This class seems to be great ! I'm quite envious ...

  2. Thank you for sharing these!! I love what you all were making! Also, it totally gave me the inspiration I'm going to use for the second beesewcial block, so THANK YOU for that. :D

  3. That looks like a fabulous class. Thank you for all these picture inspiration.

  4. Sounds like you had a wonderful time. Your piece looks great...small but great.

  5. I'm totally envious. I love Gwen Marston. Maybe one year I'll get into a class with her!

  6. oh I was so sad to miss this! Enjoyed your post immensely - thanks for sharing!

  7. Thanks for sharing. Thank your hubby, too. Supportive partners are a special blessing. . .most of the time. ;-)

  8. The class looks like so much fun, and you did a great job! I really like the idea of a mini. I've always felt too overwhelmed to try improv on a large scale, but this could be doable! Thanks for sharing your experience.

  9. This is wonderful. You did very well outside your comfort zone. (as always)
    Did you know Gwen retired? According to her web site she isn't teaching any more, so it looks as if you got in on her last class.

  10. Gwen is one of my quilt heroes. Looks like a wonderful day with her! Love all the small studies!

  11. Sounds like you had an amazing time - that's awesome! And I love where you went with your piece. Great colours!


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