Better late than never, right? My week teaching at International Quilt Festival

judycoatesperez10.15I’ve been so busy the last couple weeks but things are finally slowing down enough to share about my time at festival.

Teaching at International Quilt Festival is always a whirlwind of a week with lots of hard work and lots of good fun. I love catching up with so many friends all in one place.

My week at festival started with awards night, where my Pink Bird quilt won an honorable mention and I got to hang out in the winners section with my friends Kathy York and Sue Bleiweiss, who also won awards for their quilts in the Whimsical category.AWARD NIGHT
These are my 3 quilts that hung in the show; Pink bird in painted quilts, Crepuscular Flash in the Dinner@8 special exhibit Affinity, and Little Blue Tea Bird in Art Miniature.
judy coates perez quilts
On preview night, I ran into my ol’ Chicago friends Laura Wasilowski and Frieda Anderson, as well as Leslie Tucker Jenison and Pokey Bolton, when we all converged in the Chicago School of Fusing booth in the vendor area.
pokey, frieda, laura, leslie

Also on the vendor floor, I saw my Austin pal Andrea Brokenshire, demoing free motion quilting on mid-arm machines, and while on my way to class I ran into the adorable Cheryl Sleboda all dressed up in costume on Halloween morning. My Halloween costume was tired old painting teacher, lol.
friends at festival
FYI, the photo of the trio with blue hair was not taken on Halloween, that’s just something you might see when you walk around during festival.


Teaching at Festival

The first class I taught was, the ever popular, painting with Tsukineko inks. These are a wonderful medium if you want to paint images with clear, bright, translucent color that doesn’t change the hand of the fabric.5 tsukineko

1 tsukineko 2 tsukineko 3 tsukineko 4 tsukineko 6 tsukineko


The next morning at 8, I gave my lecture, It’s All in the Process, making an award winning quilt and everything that can go wrong along the way. I was so surprised and honored to see at least 30 people already in their seats when I walked in at 7:30 am to set up!

In the afternoon, I participated in Mixed Media Miscellany. In that event, 200 people make the rounds to 15 different demo tables over a 2 hour period. It’s a great event but after about the 4th demo, you start getting a bit punchy and by the 7th or 8th time, it’s kind of hard to keep track of what you’ve said to who.

On Friday I taught Tea and Ephemera, a fun mixed media sampler class.tea

4 tea

1 tea 1.5 tea 2 tea 3 tea

And on Saturday, I taught 10+ Techniques with Acrylic Inks. These inks are different than the Tsukineko inks because they behave more like paint, changing the hand of the fabric a bit and have both transparency and opacity. I like working big with acrylic inks and I love the beautiful variety of textures and colors that you can achieve. 1 acrylic inks

2 acrylic inks
5 acrylic inks 3 acrylic inks 4 acrylic inks

I only got photos from the first half of class since the afternoon went at too fast a pace to stop to take photos, but aren’t these some lovely samples? I’m so looking forward to teaching this class over 2 days at Craft Napa in January!


When I got back from Houston, I was surprised to find a copy of International Quilt Festival Quilt Scene in the stack of mail with a full page photo of my quilt Crepuscular Flash in it. I had no idea until I came home that it was in the magazine. This quilt was also painted with acrylic inks. quilt scene mag

What a sweet finish to a great week spent with all my students and friends!


I’d love to spark your creativity at one these upcoming events:

January 7-10 Craft Napa  2-day Acrylic Inks Adventure

April 12-14 Focus on Fiber New Smyrna Beach, FL  3 day retreat Acrylic Inks Adventure

April 25-May 1 Smiling Turtle Art Spot, Omaha, NE   2 day- Tea & Ephemera, Heavy Metal Play day & 3 day- Acrylic Inks Adventure

6 Responses to “Better late than never, right? My week teaching at International Quilt Festival”

  1. Gail Terrell says:

    Thanks for posting all the great pics. I love your work, and your students achieve amazing results. Is there any possibility that you might teach one or more of these classes on one of the new on-line formats like Craftsy or the new iquilt through AQS?

    • HI Gail, thanks!

      I probably will not teach classes with one of those companies. I realize this is probably a bigger response than you were looking for, but I want to explain my thoughts about this.

      I have very mixed feelings about the online class industry. Although I understand it’s a way to reach a bigger audience, I think it’s hurting teachers like me who are trying to make a living teaching ‘live in person’ classes. When online classes are say $20 each, (with most of that money going to a company and not the teacher) students become less willing to pay for an in person class. Many conventions are seeing class numbers drop and many pay teachers a per student rate and some don’t cover any expenses, teachers might actually lose money on a trip. It has happened to me more than once.

      The other reason I’m less inclined to teach painting online is when I teach a class I give demos of each step of the process and in between I go around the class and work individually with students who are struggling with a technique. I can’t help people after the fact to see what they did wrong when I don’t see how they are holding a brush, mixing paint, applying it to the fabric, the amount of paint or water they are using, there are so many variables and I want my students to have success and not feel frustrated with the process.

      I really hope the pendulum swings back to more live classes, the amount gained from working within a group and seeing what fellow students are doing is invaluable for learning and inspiration. That’s why I teach, it’s certainly not for the money, ha ha ha ha!!!

      • Gail Terrell says:

        Thank you for your thoughtful response. I certainly don’t want teachers to be shortchanged. I agree that a live teaching experience is the very best learning experience. I don’t question your observation on the negative effects of on-line on live teaching events. Since I, and many of my friends, can no longer travel, digital courses have helped us continue to build skills and try new techniques. Maybe someday you will come close enough to my home town that I can make a workshop. In the meantime, I enjoy your book and follow your blog.

        • I completely understand it being harder to travel to conventions and online classes being a great solution. I taught my own online color theory class for about 4 years several years ago and was able to interact with students around the world which was wonderful. I don’t think its a bad thing, I just worry about its impact the way Amazon impacted private book sellers. I sure miss going to book stores!

          Maybe you could put in a word at your local guild and see if they would be interested in booking me, I go all over the place. 🙂

  2. Martha says:

    Beautiful quilts Judy! I wished I had seen them in person but I missed Festival this year. Congratulations on your award!!

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