Make Memories – Photo art quilts – Design and Quilting

Languages: French flag English flag German flag

In this workshop, participants will use family photos, mementos and memories to create their own stories and be inspired to create their own art quilts. They will transfer family photos, their own drawings and writings directly onto fabric using a computer or inkjet transfer. Students will learn Lauren’s quick/stitchless quilting method to construct their own art quilts. Bring old letters, family photos, fabric, threads, special books, and any items you want to incorporate into your quilt. Buttons, ribbons, shells, jewelry and other embellishments are also suggested to personalize your family’s future heirloom. Knowledge or experience with quilting is NOT necessary! Knowledge and experience sewing with a sewing machine is helpful but not necessary. There are other methods of attachment such as glue sticks, staples and hand sewing. This class has no rules, except to have fun!

Drawing scenes, faces, characters and patterns on the sewing machine will enhance even the simplest quilt design. Students in this class will learn several simple stress-free machine quilting techniques to embellish their quilts. We will practice with a variety of fabrics and batting, design our own images and have fun. Students will make several sample pieces that can be finished later.

Pack 1 : Accommodation in a double room (shared with another participant) and full board
690 €

Pack 2 : No accommodation, lunch in restaurant included
550 €

Pack 3 : Accommodation in a single room and full board
750 €

If you wish to book for an extra person (spouse or accompanying person who is NOT attending the seminar) please reserve a double room (Pack 1) and contact us for the reservation of the second person.
Do NOT select a supplement without prior agreement from the organization.
For any allergies or intolerances, please contact us by email.

Sewing machines for this class are kindly provided by our partner company

Bring the following material:
  • sewing needles
  • quilting needles
  • fabric scissors
  • paper scissors
  • glue stick
  • thimble
  • seam ripper
  • eraser
  • pencil
  • colored pencils
  • note paper
  • drawing pad
  • ballpoint pen
  • quilting ruler
  • small garbage bag
  • rotary cutter
  • cutting mat
  • cardboard
  • notebook with sketches of your ideas
  • Drawing pencils for sketching, (tip: Prismacolor Ebony pencils that are water soluble)
  • Straight pins and safety pins and any other notions you like for machine sewing.
  • Scanned photos: Have your photos scanned at 300 dpi and send them as soon as possible by email to: and , so we can print them on the transfer paper.
  • Bring any souvenirs related to your photo that you would like to sew into your artwork. For example, I have used handkerchiefs, men’s shirts and ties, baby clothes and vintage linens. You can also use old buttons, necklaces, small baskets, plastic toys and old postcards, paper objects that you would like to sew into your work… Let yourself go!
  • If you do not wish to use a sewing machine, please bring several hand sewing needles, THIMBLES, embroidery thread, yam and water soluble glue sticks (Elmer’s TM glue or similar brands). Hot glue guns and glue are NOT recommended. Simple glue sticks and hand sewing will hold everything together and look great.

Bring an assortment of your favorite fabric scraps, but also ones you don’t like, you can always swap them out, fat quarter pieces and half yard pieces. Usually 4 yards in total is enough to cover the artwork which will be 24×40″.
Then 2 yards of bleached cotton muslin (24×40″) or white cotton and 2 yards of fine cotton batting (24×40″).


Bring at least one spool of invisible, monofilament polyester thread for the frame and a range of polyester, cotton, metallic and machine embroidery threads that you like. Do NOT bring serge thread: it breaks.

The teacher

Lauren is an African American art quilter. She uses photos, dyed, printed fabrics to create portraits of black life. She uses a variety of methods to add pattern to her work including raku fired ceramic masks, retro photochemical processes and lithography to create intricate surfaces.

Lauren made her first quilt at the age of 7 and has been making them ever since. She worked as a foreign service officer for the U.S. State Department and then as a human rights lawyer. While working in the Foreign Service and in law, she made art on nights and weekends. In 2004, she took the leap to create art full time.

Her art expresses her feelings about her family and her experiences. The "Birds are my People" series explores her relationship with nature: images of leaves, fish and birds surround figures and faces.

Making art helps Lauren understand her feelings while creating something beautiful. Art contains the stars of the artist and the viewer. For her, the process of creation, exhibition and audience participation adds value and meaning to her world.

Seminar progress

Day 1

We will see examples of quilts with memory photos and discuss how to choose photos and turn the images into crisp black and white prints. We will scan and transfer participants’ photos onto fabric. Choose and arrange fabrics on the design board. Self-critique and continuation of arrangement and choices.

Day 2

We will continue arrangements and finalize placement of fabrics and photos on individual design boards. You will think about choices for embellishment and attaching keepsakes. Then we will build all the pieces on the batting/back.

Day 3

We’ll machine quilt and design on separate small test quilt sandwiches. We will begin quilting the photographic memory piece.

Day 4

We will finish the machine quilting. And we will add the embellishments and binding/cover.

Accommodation and classroom

The Hôtel de La Poste*** is a friendly guest house situated in the center of the charming mountain village Le Bonhomme in the Vosges mountains.

Its facilities include a heated indoor pool, a sauna, a fitness room, a large, shady terrace, an Alsatian bar and a warm and bright restaurant, which honors Alsatian tradition.

There is free internet access in all rooms, and dogs are welcome!

The seminar will take place in the village hall just 50m from the hotel.
More information at