By Frances A Kenneley
Annie Whitsed has always believed that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. In her work, she seeks to create what she believes to be beautiful. Crazy patchwork, which combines unusual fabrics, charms, buttons and elaborate embroidery stitches, has been a wonderfully creative medium for her to pursue AND to teach. The crazy patchwork pieces Annie creates reflect elements of her personality. Intricate, delicate, precise, colourful and multi-faceted. Since 1985, she has taught hundreds of workshops and classes throughout Queensland, New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory (the eastern states of Australia). Her course offerings have included a basic patchwork course as well as project and technique-based workshops. Some examples include miniature medallion quilts, fabric brooches and curved strip piecing. She is perhaps best known for her expertise in crazy patchwork. Recently, she has developed several micro miniature pieces. Her development as a patchwork artist began in 1981 in Canberra, followed her to Queensland in 1985 and back to Canberra in 1995. In each location, she has taken advantage of local and visiting tutors to explore a wide variety of techniques and approaches to needlework and fabric arts. In 1994, she was selected as a traveling tutor for Queensland`s Flying Arts School. Throughout her career she has held numerous positions in craft guilds and committees, believing strongly in the ties that develop among artists and craftspeople. Annie is currently finishing a Diploma of Visual Arts and Crafts from the Canberra Institute of Technology (CIT). This has consolidated her skills and contributed a solid business background on which she can build an income from her craft. She regularly contributes pattern instructions to Down Under Quilts and is looking forward to refining and focusing her work in the coming year.