Wednesday, 17 July 2013


I spent all of last week in Ballarat, which is in country Victoria. I was one of the tutors at Quilt at the Winter School and I was teaching a 5 day crazy quilting class. It was actually four and a half days because we had Tuesday afternoon off.
The retreat was held at the beautiful Ballarat Grammar School and everyone had a wonderful time.

Ballarat is known for its cold winters and last week was no exception. One morning it was -3.5 degrees and the apparent temperature was -6.5!! There was ice everywhere and we had to be careful not to slip on the way to the dining room for breakfast. I wore my coat, scarf and gloves every morning and evening.

A frosty morning in Ballarat
One of the tutors was from Canada and she is used to much colder weather and she was calling us the down under princesses because of our constant chatter about the cold! Luckily the classrooms were well heated and we were rewarded with beautiful blue sky days.

Everyone was asked to bring a very small quilt of 4"x 4" and 6"x6" and they were for sale to raise money for charity. They all made a lovely decoration in the common room where we would meet for morning and afternoon tea.
6"x6" wall
I forgot to take a photo of the 4"x4". They all sold very quickly and you had to be quick to buy your favourite. I was lucky to have bought one of Caroline Sharkey's quilts.
Caroline Sharkey's quilt.6"x6"
I was too slow to buy anymore. Here is a photo of the little quilts that I made.
My little quilts
The food was wonderful and I am sure that I put on weight. We had cakes for morning and afternoon tea and desert every night. I suppose I could have said no but it was so delicious.

One night we had to dress up with a fancy hat. Here I am with a couple of friends from Waverley Patchworkers.
Don't we look glamorous!
Here is a photo of me with some fellow crazy quilters.
Crazy Quilters
The dining room didn't seem to be heated and so we found it difficult to take off our coats.

On the last night the tutors had a photo together. The other tutors were Caroline Sharkey,
Helen Godden , Karen Goetzinger (Canada) and Jenny Bowker.
The tutors
Caroline, me, Karen and Helen
Unfortunately I didn't get a photo of Jenny because she was very busy trying to get some quilts ready for an exhibition and she was working non stop towards her deadline.

I have never taught a 5 day class before but it was very successful. I usually teach crazy quilting in a one or two day class and there never seems to be enough time to get everything done and I am always pushing students onto the next stitch. How wonderful to have the time to learn and quietly stitch and talk. I had a lovely class and it was a pleasure to teach them.


We had Tuesday afternoon off and most people went out of the school grounds to boost the economy of Ballarat. I'll talk about that in another post.

Bye for now,


jude's page said...

sounds like a wonderful week

Linda Steele said...

Thanks Jude, we did have a lovely time, it was very friendly and lovely to mix with like-minded women.

Sharon said...

Hi Linda,
Sharon here - I was the person who served you at Dymocks Doncaster today Thursday... I thought that I had better make myself known to you as I could see that I took you by surprise... My blog addy is as follows :

I hope that this sets your mind at rest... I hope that you enjoy your book...
Sharon H

Linda Steele said...

Hi Sharon,
It was lovely to meet you yesterday. Thanks for the comment but I wasn't worried or anything, it was so nice to hear that someone reads my blog! I am sure that I'll enjoy the book because books are my favourite thing after quilting.