Lectures and worksHops


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 via Zoom: $400

Leaf Sampler

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.

Happens Every Fall

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!


All workshops are currently being taught via Zoom except Casting Shadows. Doing virtual workshops gives us flexibility with our hours. Workshops are six hours long, plus a break for lunch. We can do that in one day, or we can break this up into two separate 3-hour sessions which can be a day apart, a week apart, whatever. Breaking up a workshop gives students some time to make progress before going on to the next step.

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.

One six-hour workshop: $500. Longer workshops: figure $75/hour.

Emerald City

Emerald City

Min skill level: advanced beginner/intermediate

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!

Boxes and Beyond

Boxes and Beyond

Min skill level: Advanced beginner

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!

Bob and Weave

Bob and Weave

Min skill level: Beginner

Play with 3-D illusion on a quilt! By choosing your colors with careful attention to value (relative lightness/darkness), bands of color appear to weave under and over against a background of your choice. And easy project suitable to beginners, and a fun value exercise for experts. In the one-day version of this workshop, we will create the body of this quilt as shown above. Additional days allow time to add shadows to ‘lift’ the grid from the background, or to paper-piece arcs to connect the bands for a stunning border.

Narrows Bridge
Morning Paper: Iraq War Edition

UPcoming Workshops

Creative Marbling

2-day Creative Marbling workshop

Join me in the Vancouver WA area for two days of marbling on fabric.

Marbling is the dance of color on the surface of water, captured on fabric. You’ll learn the science of marbling: how to make the size, adjust your paints, and pretreat your fabric. And you’ll practice the art of laying down paint, stirring, combing — and sometimes just ‘reading’ the tray — and waiting to drop your fabric and print that unique moment. You will learn some traditional combing patterns from Turkey and suminagashi techniques from Japan, with lots of room for innovation and creativity.

As a little side show, you can also try out hydro dipping, a kind of marbling done on hard surfaces with solvent-based paint. Suggestions: metal travel mugs, leather shoes, gourds, white bowls, clear plates….

Supplied: Methocel size, marbling tray, alum pretreatment solution, 1/3 yard of treated fabric, whisks and knowledge/experience

Bring: Extra fabric, paints, buckets, gloves and an openness to exploration

See the supply list here.

Workshops will be held at the WindsRest BrewBarn, 11312 NE 207th Ave, Brush Prairie, Washington 98606. Directions to the BrewBarn here.

Want to see more examples? Check out my marbled fabric gallery!

Session 1: July 28-29, 2022, 9 am to 4 pm

Session 2: July 30-31, 2022, 9 am to 4 pm