Desert Threads Quilters Continue Virtual Meetings

Sue Bart

Virtual meetings via Zoom are keeping quilters in touch with each other visually and verbally every month. We get to see demonstrations and instructions from teachers. We share our latest projects with show & tell, and see everyone’s smiles and hear laughter. We are learning new quilting skills, and also learning our computers and how to join virtual meetings. We’re having fun!

Here are some tips we’ve learned about participating in Zoom meetings. You can join from a variety of computers: Windows PCs, Macs, iPads, even Smartphones (iPhone works well). You can participate using Safari, Google Chrome, Explorer, or Firefox (there may be others, too).

1. Learn to use the Mute feature so that your barking dog or your cough doesn’t disturb the meeting. If you are in Speaker View mode, the person making the sound will display on everyone’s screen. So, mute yourself if you are not speaking to the group.

2. Learn to use the Video feature. This is a movie camera symbol that you click to turn your computer’s camera on and off. There may be times when you are just listening and do not want your face (or your backside) to show.

3. Position your device so that your face shows in your window on the computer screen. Check to be sure it’s a nice view, just like you would want a nice photo of yourself. Smile! And don’t forget to check what is showing behind you. Hopefully, it’s not the kitchen sink with dirty dishes.

4. Embrace the technology. We are very lucky to have the Internet and technology during this time of a pandemic. We can shop online for fabric, patterns, and quilt tools. We can see our friends. We can attend meetings of large groups, attend classes, all from a safe seat in our own homes. And we don’t need to get dressed up, wear a mask, or social distance.

So, become a “zoomie.” You don’t need to go to jet pilot school, and you don’t need a Frenetic Random Activity Period, aka FRAP, like your dog or cat gets. Just open your browser to www.zoom.us or download the Zoom application and participate in a virtual meeting. It’s really very easy.

The Desert Threads meeting in October was held at Sweet Pz Designs classroom in Gilbert (wearing masks and social distancing). Those who were unable to attend in person joined using Zoom. We are really trying to figure out how to include everyone during these challenging times.

In November, our regular meeting day falls on Veterans Day, so the meeting will be Wednesday, Nov. 4, at 9:30 a.m., via Zoom. Diane Pitchford, certified quilt judge, will tell us what judges look for in prize-winning quilts. Even if you never enter a judged completion, Diane offers suggestions to improve your quilting skills.

For more information about Desert Threads, a Chapter of Arizona Quilters Guild, send an email to [email protected]