Renowned quilter to speak at Quilting in the Mountains

People will be surprised to know that when famed quilter Emilie Belak took her first quilting class, she said she never really wanted to own a quilt.

“I still don’t have quilts on my beds,” said Belak.

And for good reason, as a bed may not be the best place to admire Belak’s art quilts. Her beautiful three-dimensional masterpiece “In Praise of Poppies” has won numerous awards and was included in the 100 Best American Quilts of the 20th Century. It’s now on display in Shelburne Museum in Vermont.

“I make quilts I like looking at, so they’re not gloomy, they’re not political,” said Belak. “I really enjoy designing. I enjoy choosing the fabric and putting it together. I also enjoy the challenge of using new materials or old materials in new ways.”

Belak will be in Sun Peaks on July 16 during the Quilting in the Mountains’ Welcome Dinner and Trunk Show. She’ll bring some of her quilts, talk about how she became a quilter and where she draws her inspiration. Attendees will also have an opportunity to pick this master quilter’s brain on the secrets of the craft.

In its sixth year, Quilting in the Mountains just keeps getting better. Whether it’s getting to know a renowned quilter, improving on your quilting techniques or learning a new one, this three-day event has something for everyone.

The first ever judged quilt show will be held July 16 to 18. It’s open to all quilters. Entries will be evaluated in three categories: art quilts, lap quilts and bed quilts. The $5 entry fee to will be donated to Habitat for Humanity.

“We wanted to provide a venue for people who quilt to have their quilts assessed by a qualified quilt judge (to) help them improve their techniques,” said Pat Miller of Sun Peaks Quilters.

There’ll be a Merchant’s Mall at the Delta Sun Peaks Ballroom. Sun Peaks quilt designs will be sold at this event with proceeds going to a local charity.

Three quilting classes for various skills and abilities will be featured from July 17 to 18. At the Feathered Star Class, Lois Conradi will teach participants of all quilting abilities how to create this classic quilting pattern.

Learn about the Sashiko technique at the Asian Fusion Class. Sashiko, or “little stabs”, is a form of decorative reinforcement stitching from Japan. Traditional Sashiko is sewn with white thread on indigo cloth. This class is for beginner to intermediate quilters and will be taught by Val Wojtula.

Advanced quilters can learn new techniques at the Mary Ellen Hopkins Level 3 Class. This class will focus on 60 degree piecing and using different colour gradations to create dimension. Teacher Dianne Jansson has taken extensive training through Mary Ellen Hopkins seminars and workshops.

To reserve your spot, phone 1-800-807-3257 ext. 1 or e-mail [email protected].

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