Friday, December 5, 2014

It was a warm Thanksgiving

For over 20 years while in the Air Force I did everything I could to spend Thanksgiving at home.  Now that I'm retired, I enjoy spending Thanksgiving away.  We decided to spend our holiday in Tucson this year.  It was a very good choice according to my sun loving husband.  We enjoyed 83 degree weather on the official holiday but the entire week was beautiful. 

We are Holiday Inn fans so choose that chain when we can.  This was the sign on the back of our door in Gallup.  Yikes!  What could be happening that would cause the room rate to increase to that amount?!

We enjoyed our drive over the White Mountains even though it seemed like we doubled back and forth many times.

Every day in Tucson was spent enjoying nature.  Saguaro National Park where we never tired of looking at the saguaro cactus.

Botanical Gardens where we especially enjoyed the butterfly garden....

......and the itty bitty blue frog.

Old Tucson where many of Mike's favorite TV shows and movies were filmed. 

Colossal Cave where we learned cottonwood trees provide late November beauty.

The Tucson Zoo where we enjoyed watching the newest addition to the zoo: a not yet named baby girl elephant.  She was born August 2014 and weighed 245 pounds at birth.  She had such a personality -- full of mischief. 

Of course, I brought stitching with me.  Here's one project I worked on.  I plan to choose sashing and border fabric and hope to have them sewn into a wall hanging next week.

Today I'm writing the pattern for Camp Runamuk.  My friend designed and stitched the blocks.  I sewed them together and am drawing the pattern templates and writing instructions.  I'll post a photo as soon as the weather clears so I can get a good photo. 

Friday, November 21, 2014

To Continue or Not

Recently I've thought about my blog and whether I want to continue keeping it active or hit the delete button and send it into neverland.  I decided to keep it for a couple of reasons.  It motivates me to work on projects so I can share (unfortunately a lot of what I work on can't be shared until later but that's OK).  It also is a history without having to journal on paper.  I look back to previous entries and they bring back a flood of memories. 

My fall was very busy.  I helped Sew Graceful Quilting with vending events in Springfield MO and Quilt Congress in Mountain View AR.  I spoke at the Green Country Guild in Tulsa OK and the Saline Guild in Benton AR.  In between all that, I spent 10 fun-filled days at quilt market/festival in Houston. 

I recently finished this Cricket Street Wool design, A Sign of Christmas.  It finished 13" x 13" and you can get your own kit for it at

I'm tying up loose ends today....feel like the ends keep getting moved but I'll persist and find the ends and tie them securely.  LOL.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

A couple of finishes in time for Halloween

As a child I never went trick or treating, I never went to a Halloween party and bobbed for apples, I never had a Halloween costume......I didn't miss festivities associated with Halloween but did always enjoy the change from fall to winter that occurred around the holiday. 

As an adult, I enjoy creating pieces to celebrate the fall season.  These two small wall hangings are not my designs but were a lot of fun to stitch.  Both are Jo Ann Mullaly designs (with my modifications).

The first, We're not Scary, says "Come play with us on Halloween.  We're not as scary as we seem".  It's a combination of embroidery, wool applique, and simple piecing. 

The second says "October brings black cats, scary jacks, flying bats, witches, ghosts, haunted houses, spiders weaving, trick or treating".  I like it all except spiders weaving -- probably should have replaced that little phrase. 

On both pieces I stitched through the background fabric and a piece of batting.  I love the resulting look.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

"Mini Wonderland" wall hanging

I was thrilled when Lynette Anderson asked if I'd be interested in stitching a project for submission to McCall's Quilting magazine.  I think it turned out very cute. 

You can read more about the project by going to Lynette's blog.  It's always fun to play with Lynette's fabrics -- I have a bundle of her new line and am having fun playing with it. 

I hope to blog more frequently.  Things have been very hectic but the fall is such a wonderful time to stop and smell the roses.....errrrrr.....the falling leaves.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Gathering Acorns

The fall issue of Primitive Quilts and Projects recently arrived.  I have two projects in the magazine.  The first is a quilt featuring brushed homespun fabrics and Diamond Textile fabrics in the most wonderful assortment of textures (the Diamond fabrics are the applique backgrounds). 

Here's a couple close up photos of the applique.

I also created a pillow with a fall feel.  I took it with me to the Edmond (OK) quilt show and enjoyed people's reaction when I told them the background was just plain 100% cotton fabric and not upholstery fabric.

Of course, the photos in the magazine are much nicer than mine.  LOL.  You can get the magazine or kit at Sew Graceful Quilting.

Today I'm working on the project for the summer 2015 issue of Primitive Quilts and Projects.  I like how it's looking.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Back to Cross Stitch

The recently was bit by the cross stitch bug.  I used to stitch all the time (before my quilting days) but after I learned how to applique, cross stitch took a back seat.  I wanted to start with something quick and easy.  I chose this Shepherd's Bush project. 

Here's the finished necklace.


I am the world's worst about procrastinating when I need to make pillowcases to complement the current quilt on the bed.  I don't know why because they are super simple.  Yesterday before church, I finally got around to making a couple of pillowcases to match the quilt that's been on the bed for several weeks.  Using the sausage roll technique means all seams are encased so no raveling when they're washed.

I pulled out a Merry Cox cross stitch project and am stitching it as well as working on a wool applique project.  I hope to have more to show soon.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Patriotic Patchwork

The past 6 weeks have been pretty much a blur.  Before spring quilt market, I had my nose to the grindstone piecing and appliquing a quilt for RJR's booth.  It seems I have deleted photos of the quilt but I'll see if I can locate one. 

Spring market was held in Pittsburg PA.  As is usual these days, it was quite bright and contemporary.  I always make a list of "must visit" booths and only 21 made the list.  Many of my favorite designers were missing including Blackbird Designs, Jan Patek, Crabapple Hill, and Lackdaisies.  Quiltmania wasn't there.  According to the after market report, less than 3000 were in attendance.  Makes me wonder if quilt markets are becoming a thing of the past -- that's less than 3000 from the whole world. 

Upon returning from market, I pieced a project for Lynette Anderson.  It's super secret but will appear in a magazine later this year.  It's pretty darn cute!  Of course, what does Lynette create that isn't adorable?  Here's the quilt I made using Lynette's Starry Night line.  It hung in RJRs booth and looked quite nice.  You can get the free pattern here.  You'll notice my name is not mentioned anywhere on the free pattern.....but I did piece and applique it......really I did.  LOL.

I recently finished "Patriotic Patchwork" from Woolen Willow Designs.  It was a very quick project and one I could easily quilt myself on my trusty Bernina. 

I'm working on projects from Primitive Quilts and Projects magazine for next year.  The spring piece is ready and waiting for quilting.  I know what I want to do for the remaining projects but just need to get my nose to the grindstone and do it.  With that said, I'm off to find the grindstone. 

Wednesday, May 7, 2014


Sometimes I enjoy the mindless stitching redwork affords.  No color changes and by using Valdani perle cotton size 12 there's no need to separate threads. 

This pattern is by Jo Ann Mullaly.  Sadly, Jo Ann retired from the pattern business.  I'll miss seeing her at quilt market but know she's enjoying her retirement.

The background is an embossed cotton fabric from my friend Rhoni at Diamond Textiles.  I was apprehensive about using the embossed fabric but absolutely love the added texture it added. 

I'm tying up loose ends today in preparation for spring quilt market next week. 

Friday, April 25, 2014

A quick birthday gift

I am working on a super secret quilt for Lynette Anderson for quilt market next month -- yikes -- in just a few weeks.  Can't show photos quite yet but it's pretty darn cute.

A few weeks ago I needed a birthday gift so sewed up this little sewing bag.  The pattern was in a back issue of Primitive Quilts and Projects.  It's a Cheri Payne design but instead of making it into a table topper as she showed, I modified the pattern and made a sewing bag. 

I cross stitched the label, added a button, and had a pretty little sewing bag to give to a special friend.  It was that easy.

I need another birthday gift for another friend.....what can I sew up quickly?  hmmmm.....

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Daylilly Days

Continuing with my series of seasonal table toppers, here's the summer project.  It finishes the same size as the spring and fall toppers so once you decide where to put it you can change it out with the seasons. 

One of my favorite aspects of this project is the tiny birds spread throughout.  I used Diamond Textiles fabrics and love the way they gave the project an old fashioned look. 

I haven't received my copy of Primitive Quilts and Projects magazine yet but am excited to see how the project was photographed. 

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Springtime Frolic

I am creating a series of seasonal table toppers.  The first, Pumpkin Spice, was published in the Fall 2013 issue of Primitive Quilts and Projects. 

The second, Springtime Frolic, can be found in the spring 2014 issue of Primitive Quilts and Projects.  I haven't taken a photo since the quilt was completed and quilted; hence the sheep without
legs (poor little guys!). 

The summer issue of the magazine will arrive soon and I can't wait to see how the summer table topper was photographed.
If you're interested in a kit, you can get one by clicking here.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

I knew it had been a while since I posted but.....

Wow!  November was the last time I updated my blog.  May as well close it if it's going to be that long between posts!

December was a heck of a month.  Sunday morning, Dec 15, I received a text from my sister.  She'd been in an accident.  A very nice passerby stopped and texted me further details of where to meet the ambulance, etc.  She was rear ended by a drunk driver at 7:45 a.m. -- yeah -- a.m.  She was injured but it wasn't nearly as bad as it could have been.  Since she couldn't adequately care for herself, she moved in with us for a few weeks.  She's progressing and hopefully will return to work this week.

While my routine has been out of whack (and I'm very much into routine), I've still been able to finish several projects.  The one that brought me the most joy was "Silent Night".  It's a pattern by my friend, Norma Whaley, of Timeless Traditions. 

Cotton backgrounds with wool applique.  The borders are simple log cabin blocks.  Here's some closeup photos.

If you'd like to make one just like mine, visit here to find out more info. 
I plan to post at least weekly so be sure to check back soon.