September 26, 2008 – Can you imagine anything more fun than spending a weekend with Mark Lipinski? After a very long wait (we were on Mark’s calendar for 1 ½ years!) that opportunity finally arrived in late September at Quilted Threads. Between a dinner and trunk show and two days of classes, over 180 people had the pleasure of spending time with him! It was apparent that students in Mark’s classes left feeling like they had personally, and satisfyingly “experienced” him, but how is it possible that 150 guests at a dinner/trunk show felt the same delight? Let us assure you, Mark made that happen!
Over and around a wonderful dinner at Pat’s Peak in Henniker, Mark worked the enormous room with energy and boundless humor. His laughter could be heard in the far corners of the hall as he moved from table to table, sharing stories and connecting with each and every guest. After dinner, Mark treated everyone to a trunk show of his quilts, chronicling his journey to, and through quilting, all punctuated with riotous personal anecdotes, and bawdy humor. He shared many of his earliest quilts, quilts made from prized “imports,” quilts inspired by special events in his life, and quilts made from his own fabric lines. Each one was accompanied by a funny, personal story which added to the fun of the evening, but never diminished the beauty and wonder of the quilt on display. Mark was generous with his time, his energy, his humor, his stories, and his tireless effort to create a personal experience for each person who spent the evening with him. And they left satisfied!
Many of the guests at the dinner/trunk show were also fortunate to be able to spend an entire day with Mark in class at Quilted Threads. Over 40 quilters attended the 2 classes held on Saturday and Sunday, all working on a mystery quilt and mastering curves! Each day began with concentration as students set up and got started on the mystery. But as the day progressed, noise increased, and sounds of laughter floated over the shop floor from the classroom above. Mark clearly worked his wonders with each and every quilter, spending time getting to know them, helping them relax, and encouraging them to challenge themselves to take chances and try something new. He introduced many of the students to a new methodology for design, and others to new piecing techniques. Curves were indeed mastered, and quilts were built on the walls and re-built, as new arrangements of “blocks” were created, and solutions were achieved. The days were too short, and class time passed too quickly, as the students headed home with very unique quilts-in-progress, and with very happy faces.
We thank Mark for all he brought to our weekend in September, and all he left behind! It was more than worth the long wait.