Thursday, December 31, 2015

the end of 2015 post

So this is my end of the year post. and it is not filled with all my amazing accomplishments, ways I organized my fabulous life and career, all my dreams and aspirations I achieved. Glad to have survived 2015, grateful to have reconnected to a very dear person from my youth, thrilled to have found our tribe here in the new town. We have recently purchased a home, so 2016 brings another move, but this place we hope to stay for a long time!

A few quilty finishes to share:

Personalized pillows for our nephew's 4. I thread-painted their names. These are travel-pillow sized and I had a grand time making these! The kids loved them too!

Pieced this top, and am currently quilting. I will post a finished pic, but I like the way this came together.

Here's to 2016, may it be filled with love!

Sunday, November 15, 2015


Yes, once again I've been absent from the blog for a while. Not that the blog is an obligation, but it is my record. So where have I been? In August I suffered a mild concussion. Conked my noggin on a sharp shelf corner.

The headaches took a few weeks to lessen, and then finally ended.

Then, in early September, while on a business trip, I was injured in a serious car accident. That has taken much longer to recover from. I have been trying to heal the body, and handle the day job, while tending to my spirit, which has felt, a bit, well, broken.

Small sewing, finished this quilt:
And made this pillow:
 The center block was a gift from a friend. The flying geese are so tiny and cute. I did matchstick quilting and love the texture and the way it unifies the piece.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

(tap, tap) Hello! Anyone out there?

Yes, I have been incognito! Summer is almost at end.
I has been difficult to get back into my quilting groove here in the rental. I have gone back to getting things out to work on a project and putting away when expecting guests. I know, first world problems!

Still, I have managed a bit.
Finished this for my son's sweet girlfriend:

This is a top ready to quilt:

This is a variety of house blocks I am combining:
I have also made some pouches in anticipation of holiday giving:
Completed a wedding gift that I will share after the bride receives!
And now, I wait for cooler weather and more sewing/quilting time. I hope all of you are well!

Friday, June 5, 2015

Technical difficulties

Having technical difficulties related to posting photos. And going on vacation. Will figure it out and post next week!

Tuesday, May 19, 2015


Spent this past Saturday in the tiny sweatshop. Me and my Tiara, some quality time together. I just wanted to quilt, to let the thread lines go where they wished.

I traced the outline of a large wood embroidery hoop I have, overlapping the lines. A free-motioned mandala.

Then, I needed to do some feathers. 'Cause I haven't in a while. And I stitched the background with invisible thread. I like the contrast.

And the solitary time was a balm to my spirit!

Friday, May 15, 2015

The latest

Writing this from Pittsburgh, where I have been working this week. My past visits here have been good but this visit has been great. Such a neat city, thriving, proud of its heritage and diversity. Given that the city is built along 3 rivers, it seams more like a cool small town than a metropolitan area with major professional sports franchises. My view this week:
The smokestacks in Homestead along the waterfront.

Since I am not home, the sewing/quilting has slowed, but as I had felt a lack of mojo, not surprising. I have squeezed in some visits to local shops. The lovely Loom:
 They have a lovely array of textiles, tons of Alexander Henry novelties, home dec fabrics and trims. I purchased some of the new Charley Harper collection. If you like modern designer prints, stop here! (And visit the Parisville powder room!)

The next evening I visited the Quilters Depot. Such sweet ladies! This is a shop that caters to quilters and knitters.

 They carry a nice variety of fabrics, yarns and notions. This shop is a Handi Quilter dealer si I picked up needles, many sizes! After a 20 minute visit, I felt like I had made life-long friends. (More of a traditional aesthetic and lots of thread choices.)

My last quilt-shop visit was The Gloria Horn Sewing Studio.
This shop is in a charming old house and is jam packed with fabric, pre-cuts, embridery notions and inspiration. Mostly Moda, with a traditional slant, I purchased some Bella Solids pre-cuts. Also notable here are the many antique sewing machines on display. (Traditional Moda fans, this is the place for you. Florals and patriotic prints).

I am glad to be home and starting to feel that creative tingle. Hoping to spend some quality time in my tiny sewing studio this weekend.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

a transition quilt

We have been here a month now, in our new town. We are mostly unpacked, still settling in, working toward normal.I still haven't found a few items, but there are boxes we haven't opened. If we are moving again in a year, it really isn't necessary.

We are getting used to this house. It is not a bad house, it is just not one I would choose in other circumstances. Our lack of space is just something we will cope with. The dogs are still adjusting. They are quite clingy, and exhibit some anxious behaviors, but they are here and safe.

This neighborhood, though, or should I say are neighbors, are amazing! Could not ask for better!
Truly a gift! They greeted us with open arms and open hearts and we are really enjoying being around them.

Working from home is great! My stress level has plummeted. Now that I am on the phone for meetings, I seem to be able to fend of all the negativity of my workplace.  Yes, I have mentioned that here before, and it had settled down, but here comes more upheaval! But really, being on the phone instead of in the room, makes a huge difference!

Okay, chances are you did not land here to read about yet another example of corparate chaos, so here is my transition quilt. I call it that as I pieced the top prior to the move, and now it is the first I have quilted here. So a mixed bag of emotions. May I present, Dreamsicle:

I used Bonnie Hunter's tutorial to make the blocks. I just made them 16" square.
Mixed reds, oranges, pinks with my low-volume whites, adding blacks at the edge to frame.
Free-motion quilted on my Tiara. Feels good to have a finished quilt. Hoping life settles down for a bit!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

not my usual

Needing smaller, quicker projects, I have made a few objects:

 love this! more to make in my future!
a zippered file/tablet case (my own creation)
I like how the Denyse Schmidt coin fabric blended with the Charley Harper fabric, and both
work well with my Moda Cross-weave in terra cotta. The bag itself is not quite what I want 
to carry my work tablet and files, but I will tweak it and make another. 

Now, this is amazing and fun.Making many more of these!

Sunday, April 12, 2015

So we moved...

So we moved, 94.5 and an hour and a half away. From a new-ish house with ample storage to a smaller, older, house without. This is a rental, very dog-friendly, in a GREAT neighborhood. We can walk to the local park which has an off-leash area for dogs. The neighbors are amazing, I already feel as if we have made life-long friends! The drawback? Trying to cram my sewing/quilting studio equipment into a 10' by 11' room.

I went from this:

to this:

to this:
The tiny room was designed to be a bedroom. I grew up in a room just like this. It was perfect as a child. But for a quilting space it has been challenging. I had a mini-melt-down earlier in the week, which considering the situation was really good. I do have space for a design wall. But books, notions and backing fabrics haven't yet made it in here. Probably won't.

We are renting, since we do not know the area, and fully intend to look for an appropriate place to buy once our other house sells, so I know this is temporary. In the interest of maintaining my sanity, I have made it work and yesterday whipped up this pillow:
It is for a fund-raiser at work. Just half-square triangles, but it feels good to be making again.

Sunday, March 22, 2015


The movers will be here in 1 week. Instead of freaking out, I am trying to just do stuff. They will pack everything, except my quilting/sewing stuff. I will do that next weekend. In the meantime, and when in town, I have been doing therapy sewing (isn't it all therapy?).

Finished this:

Pattern is Moon Dance by Villa Rosa Quilts. These are the little postcard patterns. I can not resist them. Fun, well-written, easy, wish I had thought of this?
A detail, mostly Carolyn Friedlander fabric, with this little goldfish thrown in for fun.
I think it makes a great gender-neutral baby quilt to have in my stash.

On my wall, I am designing this:
Can you tell I like orange? This winter has been tough so I am gravitating toward the bright colors. Orange, red and pink just make me happy. And with my traveling for work, I have a lot of time in the to think about quilts. While I appreciate ALL quilts, I realize each of us has a different aesthetic, and for me, I love scrappy! This one is coming along nicely, if I had a batting, I would get to quilting!

Finally, I have done some quilting for hire. Here is a detail of what I recently finished:
A Downton Abbey themed quilt for a friend, she always lets me do what I want. This beautiful quilt really wanted feathers. And it quilted like a dream.

Next post may be from our new abode. Fingers crossed for a smooth move!

Saturday, February 28, 2015

so long to February 2015

cold, cruel February. short on days, long on weather. BUT, I have finished a few things!

Andalusia Light. These were the light FQs from the Andalusia Collection by Patty Young. I used the darks in this quilt. I love the saturated pink, red, orange, green along with the chocolate brown. Different!
Bold Glory #3. My own pattern, see #1 (2009) and #2 (2014) here. I developed this as my design to show appreciation to veterans. I really need to get this written!
Our family received a new member this month, a gorgeous baby boy named Everett. He is the 4th of my nephew's children (the first 3 are triplets, here are their baby quilts)
Something different from me: dessert! But these red velvet whoopie pies were easy, fast and GONE when we had family over for dinner!

Last, not least, my newest medallion (I love medallion quilts!)
72" square, I started with piecing the center using templates from Atkinson Designs' "Winner's Bouquet" pattern. I then added the piano-key border. I tried different blocks for the next border, but the half-square triangles just seemed to work (and the math was easier!). The final border was just what happened! This has Tula Pink fabrics from these collections: Prince Charming, Parisville, the Birds and the Bees, Saltwater and Acacia. The back ground fabrics, white and grey, were in my stash.
I love the saturation of colors in Tula's palette. I love how they all work together. I started this in December and just had fun with it. Some detail and in process shots:

In other news, we are preparing to move at the end of the month. Of course, I am going to sew and quilt as time allows, but I am going to use my stash. So no new additions until after the relocation.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

the sincerest form

This little blog has been quite fun for me. I have tried different methods of keeping a journal, only to give up after a short while. This format has really worked. I can combine thoughts, images, links into one place, keeping a record for myself.

This little blog has been a portal as well, allowing me to virtually meet people all over the world. That is a powerful thing. When a lowly little peon such as myself can communicate with people in different states, countries and times zones, one begins to realize both how similar we are and how both large and small our world is.

Where is all this rhetoric leading? Here. I received an email in January from a reader. He had used one of my quilt designs as inspiration for a wood inlay tray.

The quilt, from 2011:
My own design, the second quilt I did to raffle for the Stokes County Humane Society. (Note to self: I need to make another one, this was fun!)

This gentleman shared a picture of the tray he made:
Isn't it gorgeous? His name is Jacob Truax, and I believe he is quite gifted. I also want to thank you, Jacob for sharing this with me, and for giving me permission to share on my blog.

This is a great example of how simple motifs can transition from one medium to another. You really can find inspiration everywhere!

Friday, February 6, 2015

January 2015 is in the books

January was action packed. Business travel, our annual sales meeting, sinus infections.
Not as much quilting/sewing as I would like, but I did get a few things done.
Finished this quilt:

Pattern is "Cloud Nine" by Villa Rosa Designs (my 3rd using this pattern, yes I love it!). Fabrics were from a FQ bundle I bought from Quilt Dad.

Love my FMQ here, continuous feathers. My new favorite stitch design. Practice works!

I joined the schitzel and boo mini quilt swap on instagram. I made this for my partner:

I received this:
Love the colors, pattern used, fabrics, and the extras included were awesome!
Such a fun, well-run swap!

Since I volunteered to be a swap angel, I got to make a second mini quilt:
The back, to show the quilting:

Mini quilts are so good for trying new things/patterns/techniques. And mini quilts are quite a collectable pursuit among us modern quilters.

Binding on another, with 4 flimsies to quilt. Hoping to get some serious quilting time!

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Jan 1, 2015

A collage of my 2014 completed projects from my Instagram feed:
While I seemed to slow down due to my increased travel, I did more thank I thought!
Hoping for a peaceful, creative, joyful 2015!