Lectures and Workshops

Classes on demand

I’m excited to announce that I will soon offer online classes on demand through C&T Publishing’s Creative Spark. Sit tight: classes are still in the production stage, but check back here or on the Creative Spark page for launch announcements!


All lectures are done via Zoom unless other arrangements are made. I’ll consider traveling to your guild if you are in one of the last four states I haven’t visited (or Hawaii, which is always on that list, no matter how many times I’ve gone).

One hour lecture plus Q&A: $400.

Casting Shadows

My quilts are distinctive for their illusion of depth. I love to play with three dimensions! Objects such as leaves or planets appear to float above a two-dimensional surface. I’ve found lots of methods to create a sense of depth, from color and value to sheers and paint. I have a virtual toolbox full of tools that I use to create that depth, and I will show you a trunkful of quilts to illustrate the results. I’ll also tell you the stories behind the quilts — I’m told I’m funny, but I’ll leave it at Irish.

Hand of the Artist

Being an artist means expressing myself–and that means revealing myself. As my body of work grows, I can see themes emerge that reveal the things I find fascinating: botany, geometry, astronomy, old cemeteries, stones. Sometimes my quilts hold surprise messages that are only revealed under certain conditions–a flash photo, say, or a red filter. Finally, there are secrete messages in my quilts that I will tell you about but never reveal. In the process, ask yourself: what do your quilts reveal about you?

Wise Words: Lessons Learned the Hard Way

Mistakes? I’ve made a few. Luckily! By making mistakes I’ve learned all kinds of tricks to improve my skills, like how to make a perfect applique circle (start at the grocery store), how I’ve organized my sewing space so that it works for me, and how I know when to clean my machine or change my needle. I’ll give you suggestions for things that support creativity, help relax the anxiety about perfection, and even encourage you to embrace rejection. Mistakes are great!

Inspire: How Covid Kept Me Home and Expanded My Horizons

The pandemic canceled my life as a traveling lecturer and teacher. My world shrunk and my calendar
was blank. I set up tables in the backyard and marbled fabric all summer. When winter came, I moved inside
and made that fabric into quilts.

The pandemic gave me the creative time to find a new direction for my work. I can’t wait to show you
the fabrics I’ve created, the quilts I’ve made and the space I get to work in. You’ll also meet a few
‘creative squirrels’ I’ve chased along the way.


I can still teach live workshops to your guild if you prefer a group lesson. A live workshop via Zoom is 6 hours long, which can be broken into two 3-hour segments.

Six hour live workshop: $500.

For the ambitious: Workshops may be extended to as long as five days (30 hours of instruction). A six-hour workshop will get you well started on a project and give you the knowledge to complete it. A longer workshop allows time to expand the concept — adding paper-pieced borders to Bob and Weave, for example, or experimenting with multiple frames and boxes in Boxes and Beyond — all with the guidance of this experienced teacher.

Emerald City

Min skill level: all skill levels

These blocks not only look like three-dimensional pyramids, they also appear to float above the surface of the quilt! Emerald City blocks are strip pieced and simple to construct. Careful attention to value will make the illusion appear. We’ll also talk about shadows and how to choose fabrics to enhance that sense of three dimensions. So elegant and so easy — and so exciting to see the results!

Bob and Weave

Min skill level: all skill levels

By choosing your fabrics with careful attention to value (lightness/darkness), bands of color appear to weave under and over each other. The basic construction is simple enough for beginners. A rewarding way to work with value!

Quilters with extra time may want to add a paper pieced border to tie those loose ends together (downloadable PDF provided).

Boxes and Beyond

Min skill level: all skill levels

Boxes, both solid and hollow, appear to float in space. This optical illusion quilt is an expansion of the familiar Tumbling Blocks pattern. If you think Tumbling Blocks requires hours of tedious hand piecing or Y-seams, try this clever variation! This quilt is strip pieced and easy to assemble. Here’s a chance to practice value sorting! Careful attention to value placement creates the sense of 3-D. It’s easy to vary the blocks with almost no math, and it’s exciting to see the results!