It all started with several inspiring classes at The Workroom in downtown Toronto.
Getting back into quilting has been a real revelation for me. The new modern fabrics, process' and techniques are so much fun to learn. The enthusiasm of younger women and their tremendously clever ideas really puts wind in one's sails to hoist the main and get-at-it!
First class with Carolanne Graham was: Intro to Hand Work.We made pillows and pillows and more pillows. It was that much fun and very addictive once you had the tools to whip them up.
The classes aren't just about the techniques, they become a camaraderie of like-minded people who just click on one level or another. The students are as diverse as the fabric selections in the shop. In addition to learning about quilting and hand work, there was much chatter about life, favourite books, movies, food etc. It soon became clear that we collectively shared Carolanne's passion for all things Jane Austen. Quotes were flying liberally around the room and bonds were forming as quickly as the stitches. This sense of belonging and never wanting to leave the atmosphere of learning and laughing and creating inevitably led to "What's next Carolanne???" We need to be together!
It was in this class that Carolanne announced to us that she would be getting married in November. This was EPIC (another Carolanneism). It seemed like a long way off, but with our "youthful" exuberance, we all looked at one another and tacitly the stage was set for a proper "Jane Austen" tea party.
Carolanne GrahamMany months later things came together with not just our own small group, but with the addition of more friends and colleagues of the-bride-to-be. Karyn, the owner of the shop allowed us to use the new Workroom Studio space and then things started to expand....as they do. It was very difficult to cap the number of people who would want to attend, but we were doing this arranging in the middle of elections, Blue Jay's games, auctions and classes at the shop. We cobbled together lists and sent out subversive messages via Instagram...another skill added to the list. It was all very last minute, but the core group were there and everyone pitched in. Perfect.
These fantastic pictures were taken by Tasha Shaw-Verbic ~ Woman extraordinaire with one of the cutest dogs on the planet.
This pie is very important. Carolanne not only taught us about quilting and hand stitching, but she also launched herself into a career of pie baking. It became an intrinsic part of the class along with gasping and clutching of pearls! This is the Salty Honey Pie from "The Four & Twenty Blackbirds Pie Book". I never would have ventured to try "Sour Cherry Pie", but she did and now it has to be one of my all-time favourite pies. Since she thought she was coming for a small gathering, she, of course, also brought her pie. The common Date Squares that I bring are also formally known as "Matrimonial Bars"....how appropriate.
It was such a lovely day and everyone who could attend was there and added to the bounty of the tea table. I was delighted to be able to teach all these "youngsters" a little trick of my past. The stacking of the tea cups which they had me record in 15 seconds!! so as to get it on social media. Several have decided to start their own collection of vintage china.
Hand Pieced Star Sampler Have a look at the calendar in the new year and join us! Thank you Carolanne for everything.
All tea party photos and video courtesy of Tasha Shaw-Verbic. Please ask her permission for use
Carolanne Graham photo. The workroom.
BAPalmer for her decorating help, floral arranging and constant suppervision :)
All Carolanne's friends and colleagues who helped and contributed to the party ~ couldn't have done it without you all.
PartyEverAfter ~ Etsy
ArtTeaLife Sandy Gordon/onecrabapple ~ Etsy
Countryatheart2008 ~ Etsy
www.TinTeddy.com ~ Etsy