The Free Motion Quilting Project: Awesome Lecture!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Awesome Lecture!

I've just gotten back from the most awesome experience ever!

Tonight I traveled with a friend to Concord, NC, where I presented my very first lecture to the Cabarrus Quilter's Guild.

First off, I must say that this is one awesome guild. It's a huge group of awesome, inspiring quilters who obviously love what they do!

I had an amazing time! After it was over I kept asking my friend: "Why haven't I been doing this before?"

It just felt so natural to get up and share stories and experiences about my quilts. I love sharing and I felt great the whole time.

Second, I have to thank my friend, who does read this blog, and who was an amazing resource, kind ear, friendly supporter, and excellent sales woman the whole evening. She was better than Vanna White!

To everyone who commented last week, YES! You were absolutely right - Quilters are amazing people who loved me before I ever opened my mouth.

A few funny things happened that I thought I'd share with you:

The Duchess was hanging up on display and quilters started coming up to look at it. One of the quilters asked:

"That's so neat! What do you call that kind of fabric?"

I replied: "Stained."

Ha! The Duchess is now so evenly blotchy and stained that it practically looks like it was intentional. Maybe I shouldn't tell them it's damaged beyond repair???

Naw. I've gotta make sure no one ever treats dirty wholecloths with straight hydrogen peroxide. It's too big of a mistake to not share.

The best thing happened at the end of the program:

As I was saying my goodbyes I included the following:

"By the way, this is my very first lecture ever,
so thank you for being such a wonderful audience!"

Their jaws dropped. Seriously. Too the floor. They had trouble believing me.

That was all I needed to see to know that I did a really good job tonight.

So super thank you to all the encouragement and the 2 quilters who came to the meeting because of this blog. It's such a wonderful experience to meet ya'll in person!

I'm gonna walk on air for the rest of the week!

Leah Day


  1. Good for you, Leah. I'm not surprised. And, no wonder you can't sleep!:):)

  2. Leah, remember we beleive in you - now you have proof, in person, that others do too - and that you are sharing something we all crave and rarely get:- a fresh, no nonsense 'you can do it' guide to the major fear/horror in many home quilters life - machine quilting, but you don't stop there you take us further than basic FMQ into guides on what to do when, to think outside the box and consider our quilting works as 'art forms' - which in all honesty is, no matter what they are.
    We all cut, piece, sandwich, quilt and bind our tops and are happy with the fact that we have finished at last, but, we should all celebrate the fact that we can and do do this (or any craft) as there are many who just can't or can't be bothered to do so and relish the journey of discovery and the treasured item that's the result.

  3. so glad it went well for you! xxx

  4. That's wonderful Leah. Way to rock out! Kudos on a great job. Sounds like you've found "it". :)

  5. Let me be the first to say that you did a wonderful job. You have the stage presence to get up in front of a crowd of strangers and speak as if we were all sharing a cup of coffee in the kitchen. Your work is absolutely beautiful and I look forward to seeing you making it in the "big time"!

  6. I'm not surprised that it went well! Your blog is wonderful, so your lectures are probably just as good if not better.

    If you ever want to travel up north to get away from the southern heat and humidity in the summer, my guild in PA would love to have you. Several of us read your blog religiously...

  7. Well Congrats! Sounds like you did great. You should have had someone tape it and you could put it on your blog.

  8. Congratulations! I knew you'd do great. Wish I could have been there to cheer you on.

  9. I am so so so so happy for you! I knew you could do it! I think you are well on your road to fulfilling your destiny as an artist/teacher/lecturer/quilter extraordinaire! GO LEAH!

  10. Oh, one more thing... last night I saw a movie called "Julie and Julia" about a woman named Julie, who, in 2002, decided to cook all of the recipes in Julia Childs' cookbook, in 365 days. She did it, blogged about it, and became quite famous doing so... the movie was based the book she wrote which was based on her blog, and Meryl Streep starred as Julia Child. Doesn't get much better than Meryl Streep in a movie about your life! LOL

    Anyhow, it reminded me of you, and this project. Check out the movie, it's quite inspirational!

  11. Leah, you did a WONDERFUL job!
    You looked so natural up there in front of everyone! You didn't look nervous AT ALL!
    Your quilts are even MORE impressive in real life! Your quilting is SUPERB! I can only HOPE to be a third as good as you one day... in some *distant* future... when the heavens open up and all the gods are smiling down on me. =-)
    Again, GREAT job, and it was very nice meeting you! I'm sure that if you ever need a reference, all the officers of the Board will stand up and cheer for you.

  12. Well done! If you ever do a lecture/trunk show nearby (Adelaide, Australia!) I'll be sure to pop in ;)

  13. Way to go Leah... you'll be traveling around the world giving lectures in no time. Might I recommend Ottawa, Canada? :)

  14. I'm SO glad that it went so well, but, of course, we all KNEW it would! :-)

  15. Leah,
    We LOVED your lecture. May I say that you have inspired many of us to Jump off the Edge. Thank you for giving me a little courage.

  16. Congratulations! Those of us who read your blog daily knew you would do a great job. Thanks so much for your inspiration.

  17. Congratulations! I knew you would be a great speaker. You're a natural. I could tell from your videos. I'm glad it was such a positive experience. Quilters are a wonderful and friendly bunch. :o)

  18. Wow! What a great evening you had! So glad to hear you had fun too! Wish I lived in your area. But glad to have learned of your blog and follow you here.

  19. Congratulations on such an awsome experience. And a great big thank you for sharing your wonderful talent with all of us!

  20. I'm not surprised one bit! You are such a natural, you were born for this! I saw your video on Utube and was amazed by your skills in free motion quilting, how fast you progressed, how easy you make it look! Every time I need some quilting supplies I'll be sure to get them from your shop!

    PS. Even before I saw this post, after seeing your video I knew that you'd become a national teacher. Its in your DNA!

  21. Sounds like you were having fun, wish I had been there, but I live in Denmark.


  22. Congratulations on having an awsome time! I am so glad you were able to share with those folks. We often have talents we never knew until someone else helped bring them out. I have been reading your blog since it started and have no doubt that you are an excellent teacher.

    Dorothy Halvorsen in Nebraska

  23. leah
    so glad you had an awesome time you deserve because you are so gifted

  24. Congrats! I wish I had been there to hear you! I'd buy a ticket to listen to you talk about quilting!
    Best, WendyB @

  25. I just found your blog--you should come up to the Triangle area and lecture at our new modern quilt guild! It's called Triangle Modern Quilt Guild and it just started. Our website is

  26. What a great way to start out the new year! It is wonderful to get instant feedback too so congratulations.

  27. Glad your lecture was awesome. With all the video practice you do with your presentations on the web, I think they were a form of speech rehearsal in order to talk in front of a large crowd. Love your videos, wish I lived closer so I could have attended your lecture.
    You go Girl!

  28. WOOOO! GO LEAH!!!!!

    Knew, knew, knew you would rock. How could you not?

    So pleased for you!

  29. Leah, I was talking to my husband last night about you. I told him that Karen McTavish is charging $200 per student for workshops, and that I think you will eventually be as "big" as she is. I'm serious! You're very personable, knowledgeable, creative, and organized. (I'm just hoping you at least have dirty dishes in the sink, and loads of laundry that need to get done "eventually". =-) )
    But I told my husband last night that those of us who were there this past Monday night will one day be able to say, "I was there at her very first lecture!" And I'm so proud and happy that I was.
    Thank you for sharing yourself with us on this blog as well.
    And HUG THAT BABY!!!

  30. Wendy - You BET I have dirty dishes in the sink and enough dirty clothes to make the average woman faint.

    There's definitely a trade off. I'm only able to do this because I choose NOT to do other things.

    Saying "no" is one of the hardest things to do, and I do it daily when I walk past that sink of dishes.

    Quilting is always more important than perfect housekeeping. After all, tomorrow more dishes will be dirty again, but will I still remember that awesome quilting design? Probably not.

    It's a different lifestyle, but one I wouldn't trade for a million dollars.

    I had a great time at the lecture and can't wait to do it again!




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