Debbie Grifka – Quilt University 2019 Teacher
By Raylene Kruger
May 28, 2019
It is my pleasure to introduce Ann Arbor modern quilter and author Debbie Grifka. I have idolized and admired Debbie for many years. She has been a GAAQG member since 2002 and has taken many classes from teachers before starting her professional quilting journey.
As soon as Debbie began quilting, she was determined to figure out her own personal style. Debbie’s quilts have a limited color palette and effectively use negative space and/or simple bold shapes. She is looking forward to teaching three classes this year to help students grow in skill and confidence as quilters and artists. Her belief is that everyone is creative and learning how best to access your creativity requires time, experimentation and practice.
The Friday, July 26, one day class entitled, “Every.Day.Creativity” will kick student’s creativity into high gear. There will be discussion of Debbie’s 2017 and 2018 100-day-projects and how to set up for success. Attendees will work on a postcard project and a 10” mini quilt. Everyone will leave with strategies they can use to create quilts every day.
On Saturday, July 27, her class, “Drawing In Fabric” will be a lesson in ways to make bias tape applique quilts. Whether you want to draw a picture or something more abstract, students will enjoy creating their own unique quilt. Debbie will also help attendees explore other ways to “draw” with fabric.
The Sunday, July 28 class, titled “Clerestory,” is going to teach students multiple ways to play with negative space while sewing the “Clerestory” quilt. The blocks are partially pieced and partially appliqued. Students will have fun creating this modern quilt.
When Debbie gets into a quilting/creative slump, she does not view it as a slump. She thinks of it as a pause to let her creativity rebuild itself. If she feels too much time has passed she will work on a charity project or something fairly simple to get herself back into her sewing groove.
Regarding her quilting future and whether her style may change, Debbie feels that her love of graphic work with negative space and a limiting color palette will always be her style. Her favorite thing about quilting is that she can take an idea in her head and bring it to life in a wonderfully textural way using techniques that have existed for generations.
Please join us at Quilt University, July 26 through July 28, at Washtenaw Community College in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Several all-star professional quilters will be teaching fun, fascinating and inspiring classes. Registration is open for both members and non-members.