Sunday, April 26, 2009


I'm afraid that I haven't been posting lately, but it's because I've been so busy sewing things.  I took a whole lot of photos of what I've been making to show you, and I promise that soon I will get all caught up. 

Wouldn't these floor designs make great quilts!!!  They are from a cathedral floor in Greece and I was amazed when I saw them because they looked so much like quilts to me.  Hmmm...  I wonder if points and corners are easier or harder to match when working with stone rather than fabric!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Baby Quilt Tutorial (Part 1)

Here is a photo of a baby quilt that I just finished.  It's nothing incredibly original, but I'm going to show/tell you how I made it.

I started out with many, many 5" squares.  I don't know how many--I didn't even count them.  I tried to choose a light and a dark value of each color I used, e.g. a light blue and a dark blue together.  


I placed a dark blue and a light blue square right sides together.  Using my Fons & Porter quarter inch seam marker and a marking pencil, I drew a line 1/4" on either side of the imaginary diagonal line.  These lines became my sewing lines.

I sewed on the marked sewing lines:  two seams on each set of squares.  Note:  if you are not familiar with chain-piecing, look that up on your favorite quilting site or in a book.  It worked really well on this project.

Using a rotary cutter, I cut each "square pair" in half on the diagonal.

Open each "square pair and.....

.....iron the seam to one side.

Sunday, April 19, 2009


I finished this crazy quilt patch (12" square) for a Quilt Guild past president's quilt.  When each president retires, she gets to choose a design and everyone who wants to makes her a quilt block.  Sometimes they choose only a color or a specific fabric.  Sometimes they choose a particular pattern, whatever.  This past president wanted a crazy patch with orange and bright blue in it.  So there you go!  I embroidered my name on it, and a few other embroidery stitches, too, but mostly she wants to embellish it herself.


And I also got busy yesterday and made three "Taggie Blankies" for my Quilt Guild to sell at an up-coming art fair.  My granddaughter loves her "taggie," and I had lots of the pink minky fabric left, plus my zillions of ribbons, so I got these together pretty quickly.  The photo on the right shows a single taggie (about 14" square, more or less), and the left photo shows all three that I made, with their "back sides" showing, too.  They are a lot of fun, except that the minky fabric isn't the easiest to handle.  I finally got wise on the third one and used some iron-on interfacing on the minky.  

Saturday, April 18, 2009


Here is a toy stuffed owl that I made for my dear granddaughter.  Thanks much to Susan Beal for the pattern, which appears in her book Button It Up.  You can find this at 

Also, the beautiful fabric I used came from

He (she?) is properly titled Big-eyed Owl Button Toy.  I made just a couple alterations to Susan's pattern.  I used fabric instead of

felt, and I appliqued on the eyes and beak, instead of using buttons, since DGD is only a baby, after all.  And none of likes baby swallowing a button, do we!!!

It all went together easily and quickly.  Now I want to make some more, maybe using some of that lovely-feeling (but not so lovely to sew with!) minky fabric.

Thursday, April 16, 2009


I got very industrious yesterday and decided to work on my horrific, many-layers deep, totally covered, disgusting desk.  I set the oven timer for one hour and worked like crazy, just starting at the top (like an archaeologist!) and going through everything on my desk.  I separated stuff into piles.  I had a pretty big "paper recycle" pile, a pile for "goes upstairs to DH's office," a pile of "computer work," a pile to go to another room, you get the idea.  After an hour, I set the oven timer for another hour and I sat down to work on the pile called "read through."  I didn't get all the way through it, but made some good progress.  Now, I have to say that, although my desk isn't completely cleaned off, it's great to see some of the nice wood surface finally showing through!  I planned to set the timer for an hour today, too, and any subsequent days it takes to get completely through.  I admit I haven't done it yet today, but the day isn't over yet!  I still have more desktop to clean off, and some of those piles to go through.  But I feel much better about it all, and so very, very happy to have gotten things started in the right direction.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


The wind is really blowing hard again today.  It's been several days in a row now--makes it unpleasant to go outside.  My blue whale weather vane has been spinning and spinning!  Isn't he cute!?  My wonderful brother made him for me a few years ago, and I just love to look out the window, or drive into the driveway and see my whale.  But I do wish the wind would settle down a little bit.  It's tiring.

I noticed these beautiful poppies growing in the side of a rock.  How tenacious is that!!!  I just love poppies.  It's hard to see poppies and not smile!  (That's your cue--smile now!)

Paper n(Or) Plastic

I'm getting pretty excited about an upcoming local art show.  My friend Harmony and I are co-curating a show called Paper n(Or) Plastic, and are calling for entries of shopping bags.  The idea is that neither paper nor plastic is the right answer; we should all be carrying re-usable shopping bags.  So this show is all about making artistic shopping bags.  Go to for the details of how to enter.  We are going to have some great artwork there, too, by Chris Jordan (check out his website--very moving stuff).  And making a very appropriate appearance will be The Green Bag Lady.  This fantastic woman makes bags and gives them away to people all over the world.  Seriously, she's given away thousands and thousands.  She's going to be at our show, AND she will be giving away some bags.  So it's going to be a pretty great show, I think.  Anyone who is reading this may enter.  It is non-juried, and there will be prizes given, but this isn't an art show that should intimidate anyone.  They're shopping bags, for heaven's sake!

Saturday, April 11, 2009


I've had a small flurry of cooking/baking lately, which is unusual for me.  It feels weird saying that, because I used to bake and cook a lot (in a previous life, I guess).  Anyway, I got very brave and tried some chocolate-covered strawberries this afternoon.  I'm taking them to our Quilt Guild's show opening at the Arts Center tonight.  I haven't tasted one of these finished strawberries, because there are only 23 of them.  But I'm sure they taste all right, because I used a couple of strawberries to wipe the last of the chocolate out of the bowl!

Friday, April 10, 2009

This is a common scene from my office window.  Our house is built into a hill a little bit, so I'm right at ground level with the beautiful deer that browse around outside.  The deer is somewhat obfuscated by the window screen.  (How's that for my big word of the day!)

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Landscape quilt

I took a class at Asilomar (Pacific Grove, California) in February with Judith Baker-Montano, who is  (to say the least) well known in the crazy quilting world.  The class was called "Crazy Quilted Landscapes."  We class members took in a photo(s) of someplace dear to us, and Judith helped us transform those photos into a crazy quilted landscape.  I wish I could show you the original photo, but it was taken with another camera.    Anyway, this is the quilt I made from a photo of  a small piece of the Sonoma County, California coastline.  I'm very happy with the way it turned out.  Judith is a wonderful teacher (as well as fun); it was a joy to be in her class.  If any of you are ever in California from February through September check out  These are 6-day long classes held in the beautiful setting of Pacific Grove, California.  It is an all-inclusive thing, and is really wonderful.  I highly recommend it.

Here is a close-up of a quilt I've been working on my my Quilt Guild's challenge show, which starts this Saturday.  The challenge is titled "It's Easy Being Green."  I made this quilt from recycled clothing (I bought at second-hand stores).  I chose all shades of green, and cut into different sizes/styles of leaves.  It is mounted on some leftover drapery fabric I had lying around, and the batting is some leftover flannel (2 pieces spliced together).  I call it "Re-Leaf."  I had fun making it, as I just laid the fabric leaves all over the background, then sewed them down.  After everything was sewn I threw it into the washer and dryer to make all the raw edges "flutter and ruffle."  And yes, there is a hole in the middle of the quilt!  A leaf-shaped hole.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Quilting Monday

Whoopie!  Today is when I meet my buddies for an all-day sewing day.  We do this once a month, and it is a lot of fun.  I have two quilting projects that are due on Wednesday, so I'd better not chitchat too much!  I'll try to get some pix and post to the blog.

The deadline has to do with our Quilt Guild's annual challenge show.  One piece I just have to put the borders on and finish it up.  The other piece still needs a lot of machine quilting on it.  I started the quilting yesterday, after tons of pinning (still wasn't enough).  I thought it would be a pretty quick job, but I was a little mistaken, to put it mildly!  We'll see how far I get today.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

HELP!  I'm starting a Blog and I have no idea what I'm doing!!!

What I'd like to do is post entries about what I'm working on craft-wise.  I am mostly a quilter, and also enjoy paper crafting, and well,  just about any crafting at all.  Please be patient.