someone I admired was going to teach a class on the New York Beauty block, I didn't hesitate very long before signing up. I had seen Sarah's work on display and had experienced her warm, laid-back and unpretentious personality at guild meetings. I'd long been fascinated by New York Beauty but never had the courage to try it.
I had had one experience with paper piecing; a friend held my hand (figuratively) as I went through the process and while she was a superb teacher, I thought "never again." The process just didn't seem to be compatible with my brain's wiring. That same blogless friend encouraged me when I mentioned I was thinking of taking this class. More confident that I in my paper-piecing ability, she asked me if I'd ever pieced curves before and when I told her "no," she looked concerned for just a moment before assuring me, "Oh, you'll be fine!"
The class meets for two hours on four Monday evenings, and we are half-way through at this point. Our location is a terrific new sewing studio/fabric shop in Philadelphia, and the class is full of groupies who seem to follow Sarah around, taking every class she teaches. I can see why. A patient and funny woman, she has the knack for [almost] ameliorating my feelings of incompetence. Each week we learn the paper-piecing part of the block in class and make one unit. During the intervening week, I put the shoulders and the center on that unit and then make a second block.
Oddly, so far the curves part has been no challenge. And I seem to have the rhythm/process of the piecing. My snag seems to be positioning the new piece each time so that it entirely covers the outer edges of the previous piece. I'm trying to believe that by the end of the class, I'll have it down.
At our quilt retreat last weekend, at one point the topic turned to different techniques and when asked if she liked to paper-piece, one participant responded, "I'd rather give a cat a bath!" Now having done both of those things at one time or another, it is a good thing we are presently catless. I could see myself struggling to decide whether to sew along those dotted lines or to head for the sink, the shampoo, and the puss.