Presentation to Derby Quilters Group

It was a pleasure to be asked to give a presentation on batik for the Derby Quilters Group at The Derbyshire Federation of Women’s Institutes H.Q.

Derby Quilters Group takes place at the Derbyshire Federation of Women’s Institutes.

After arriving in a cold gale this morning I was greeted warmly by the club secretary Margaret Smith and some friendly group members. I quickly got to work setting up the demo whilst husband and technical wizard Jamie wrangled wires and lap-toppy things ready for the slide-show. Through a whistle-stop tour we covered introductions, batik history and context, tools of the trade and batik methods all before the coffee break!

We stopped for refreshments and with interests piqued many curious ladies came to the front to talk and to ask questions. I encountered members who had “tried it before”, or who had bought batiks or had used shop-bought batik fabrics in their quilt making. Their eldest member was 96 and it was delightful to see her zest for continual life-long learning. These ladies were a lovely bunch whose enthusiasm brought about such synergy in the hall.

After the coffee-break I talked a bit about my own work, my role within ‘The Batik Guild’ and we looked at some of the alternative methods of working with wax as a resist. We considered the work of other contemporary batik artists and I introduced batik examples with specific relevance to quilting. We looked at pattern and motif, dyes and colour fixing, different waxes and some of the alternative designer batik fabrics. I finished up by showing a series of time-lapsed videos I had filmed of the batik process, sharing some quilting inspired fabrics I’d made, plus a slide show of some beautiful quilts from around the globe. These were inspirational examples of where my world and the quilters world happily meet in the middle.

At the close, with everyone gathered around, I gave a practical demonstration, followed by several adventurous ladies having a go themselves and discovering the versatility of this wonderful craft. Lots of questions were asked and time just flew – I don’t think I’ve ever talked so much in just a few hours! We were so busy that we forgot to take photos and the only record of the day are these shots of me here cleaning up at the end. 🙂

Thanks so much Derby Quilters for sharing your enthusiasm and your knowledge on all matters quilting. I do hope to see you all again soon!

Derby Quilters welcomes new members of all ages. They meet every Wednesday morning in the Derbyshire W.I. HQ and would love to hear from anyone interested in developing patchwork and quilting skills. Call Margaret Nicholass on 01332 550751 for more details.