The speaker(s) at the Asheville Quilt Guild's meeting yesterday were George & Virginia Siciliano from Lebanon, PA.
He's made his name creating the most unbelievably pieced quilts......which are becoming smaller and smaller. Some of his micro-minis contain 1" blocks with 32 patches......stitched on the sewing machine!
This is his 2nd quilt........okay shoot me now....
I believe this was his 3rd or 4th.....
..as you can see.....he made an immediate jump to smaller and smaller pieces. His supportive wife (mentor/instructor/inspiration) is shown holding one of these two quilts. They contain something like 1,000 pieces. What's truly astonishing is that these two quilts have the identical blocks......only the colors and settings were changed.
This visual stunner was one of my favorites. George tells a funny story about how a business owner next to the music shop that George and Virgina owned suggested the value would be about $10.00 and that she'd like him to make 5 more. Why? She thought they were place mats and clearly did not understand the talent and time involved in creating this masterpiece.
I believe this small piece had something like 3,000 pieces.......he kept saying his technique was 'easy'.......hummmmm. One of our PTA fiber group members (an excellent piecer) is attending the workshop today......we'll see if she has any hair left on her head after class.
So....when is small enough and how many pieces does it take?? It's not a question I've ever contemplated......but I was happy George did!
UPDATE: Here's two comments from folks who've taken George's workshop:
#1. Don't know if easy is the right word. I think he simply has identified tips and steps to make foundation piecing more manageable and designed a seam allowance guide to help with the stitching process. And he and his wife use double sided tape instead of pins.
#2. I took a class from George a few years ago, after seeing his work in exhibits. Easy for him to say the technique is easy. I found it utterly nerve-wracking. One good thing: George doesn't have to spend a fortune on fabric. Virginia does that. She makes exquisite full-size quilts; at the time I met her she favored Willliam Morris prints. She is a hand-quilter, and her work is as utter perfection as his is. I think I last saw them around 2002 or 2004.