Thursday, October 28, 2010

Thankfully No More Thangles

Last January friend Cheryl and I
started celebrating "Thangles Thursdays"

Below is Cheryl with the completed pieced top:

We both created the same top
though mine has darker blue sashing
and wide black borders.

Mine is off to Ebony for my
first ever quilt completed by a
professional long arm quilter.
Check out her amazing offer here

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Autumn Amish

From this:

To this:

In one lovely day.

Catching up on posting the
fun times sandwiched
between planting 50
trees and shrubs
along the new fence line
this past summer.
This was my entry into the
Liberated Amish Group.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

ICE for Michelle

This is the block I received from Michelle for our
Chicago Modern Quilt Guild Challenge.
Lots of prints - really different from my usual style.
That's what challenges are, right - to stretch us?
Clearly she was headed toward some flowers.
I just changed the scale a bit for a
Lady Bug Picnic:

I used the striped fabric to make the
squares for the flower pot &
the mini quilt on the clothes line.
For the fruit tree I was
channeling Kathy York.
(Big thanks to Michelle for
reattaching the buttons that fell off - oops!)
My favorite bit is the plate
on the picnic table:
Michelle's blog is "Bacon then Eggs"
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Saturday, September 25, 2010

End of Summer Celebration

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In honor of September as "National Sewing Month"
I've returned with this lovely
end of summer treat -
The completed "ICE Challenge" quilt that
I received from Jessica in August.
Isn't it beautiful?!!!
She started with my original block
and material & added only grey.

My favorite bits are:
the cool continuous block quilting
the bi-color pieced binding
and the wonderful diagonal stripe.

Thanks Jessica - you're a wonder!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Blogger's Quilt Festival Waterfall Return

Welcome Bloggers Quilt Festival Visitors!

I made this quilt for my daughter's 8th grade graduation
and it follows the design she created in a 6th grade art class on
Frank Lloyd Wright's style.
Her painting shown below represents a
Frank Lloyd Wright style waterfall
which she intended as a quilt pattern.
This quilt encompasses both my love of nature in quilts, and
my interest in abstraction in them as well.
The tonal fabrics read as solids, which
seem to be my current mode of choice for fabrics.
I have a new quilt planned in this format in greens, called
Garden Gate - stay tuned!Posted by Picasa

Monday, May 17, 2010

ICE Breaker Challenge

Yesterday was the kick-off for the Chicago Modern Quilt Guild's
first ever challenge. The goal:

meet new folks, play with fabric, give a gift.

We picked 4 fat quarters from our stash
and made 1 block from part of them.
The block and remaining fabric went in a bag with
our name & contact info.

At the meeting all who brought a bag put a name in the hat, and then drew one.
We then took home the bag of the person's name we drew to create a small
Mini wall quilt for them.
My block is shown above - still working the "liberated" thing.
Next up: Michelle's block that I brought home!
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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Cactus Care

My father had both Alzheimers & Parkinsons, and I was his caregiver.

In his honor this quilt reflects the Arizona desert he loved.

The cactus is an apt metaphore for many prickly moments as his condition progressed,

and the angles in the quilted sky reflect the unexpected directions our conversations took.
The years with Dad at our house, though, were also often bright & sunny
as these colors reflect.
There was much love sandwiched among the rocky times
which is reflected in the quilting at the base of the quilt.
This quilt was donated to the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative

Love you, Dad. I miss you

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Saturday, March 27, 2010

cactus quilting

On one of my yummy AZ trips this winter
Bob & I had a wonderful day at the
Sonora Desert Museum. While at lunch,
I was struck by the beautiful geometry of
the organ pipe cactus.

Though often overlooked for it's more
popular cousin, the suaro with its iconic arms,
the pipe organ clearly displayed
what I had just learned about at
Taliesen West: Frank Lloyd Wright's
broken line of the desert.

Here it is in somewhat abstracted quilting terms:


And then:

Hopefully a finish to show tomorrow for AAQI - stay tuned!
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Monday, March 15, 2010

Doors Done!

Couldn't resist this picture which features
my assistants: daughter and our dog Blaze.
I think it also captures the contrast between
the bland gray of our Il March
and the bright colors I was craving to work with.

Some quilting:

during which I realized my Bernina is due for a tune up.

Though this quilt kind of "did in" my goals of a Finish it February
it was exactly the right thing for me to be doing.

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Monday, March 8, 2010

Liberated Amish Love

This quilt (or blocks on the design wall at least)
from Julie at Quiltdivajulie is
my current favorite on the
Liberated Amish Get Together.

In my list of Quilting Goals for 2010 one was to pick one new challenge to stretch my skills, and this is my choice. My love of Amish quilts and all things solid and/or abstract make this a natural inspiration for me, and using the techniques in Gwen Marston's Liberated Quiltmaking II will bring a new type of quiltmaking into my life. I'm excited to connect with my first group of online quilt folk on a project. The top is to be completed for the challenge by June -
stay tuned. . . .
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Monday, February 22, 2010


One of my favorite things about my "studio"
(read - the portion of the basement I fixed up for the kids that they never used and now it's mine)
is using the top of the ping pong table for pin basting my quilts.
The binder clips keep the layers taught & the table even has mid-point lines painted on!

For some reason I really obsessed about the quilting pattern for this quilt,
so I copied an outline of the blocks a few times & tried out various patterns.
The winner is:

It felt a little like writing manuscript notation for music.
Hope I like it on the quilt as much as on the paper!
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Thursday, February 18, 2010

It's a Top!

Put the last border on the comfort quilt today:

The happy colors are just what I wanted for Anna.

The pretty bluebird hanging at left is from one of my favorite stores,
our local 10,000 Villages and was
a bright offering from Haiti.
Good to be able to support the artisans of that country yet.
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Saturday, February 13, 2010

Another Kind of Love

Early this week I learned of a 20 year old neighbor whose father died suddenly. The colors below are the start of a comfort quilt for her in much brighter colors that the the original design called Emerald Forest which I have in a Batiks Inspired by Bali book.

Mixing and matching got a little bit more messy:

And by the end of the day I was fitting in puzzle pieces on the design wall:

I'm calling this quilt "Doors"
in honor of the doors her father opened for her,
and the ones she'll open in the future.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Sunny Valentines

For "Tuesday Teachings" this week I made a beach scene Accidental Landscape a la Karen Eckmeier's book.

This one's a bit too wide, but it was so I could do this:

And then to bring some wonderful Laura Wasilowski color into my white February, I tried her confetti collage technique from Fusing Fun and took these steps:

Backed in a bright yellow & a little binding with pretty thread and voila: a valentine bookmark.

The back has a small silver heart charm strung on the ribbon.
For next time: shorter! And coordinating ribbon would be nice, although it does go well
with the lucious sulky orange/yellow/pink blend thread I had in the bobbin!

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Tuesday, February 9, 2010


This journal is on its way to my son who loves the poem on the cover titled "Tenderness and Rot" by the U.S. Poet Laureate Kay Ryan. At stressful points during our packing of him off to college this year, he would spontaneously quote the final stanza:

"It is important
to stay sweet
and loving."

Missing him this Valentines Day
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Monday, February 8, 2010


Another "Finish it February" success! This is "Harmony" - pattern (and material) by McKenna Ryan. It is off to the dorm already. I really like the look of these small wall quilts mounted on canvas - hope to try it with one of my own designs soon.

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Thursday, February 4, 2010


This McKenna Ryan pattern piece was a gift for my daughter. It was the first time we ever both liked the same thing from a set - our aesthetics are dramatically different - so this, and a companion piece (Harmony) are late Christmas gifts. Her color pallet, nature for me.

I'm practicing "Finish it February" at my house - no new projects until a few of the UFOs are complete. This also provided some free motion practice which is on my list of "do's." The back before mounting on canvas:

Peace was a January finish, Harmony - hopefully - will be a February
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