Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Summertime Is For Visiting!

Yesterday I had a visit from someone I hadn't seen in too many years.
Joni grew up just two houses away from me. It was so good to see her and catch up with where her life has taken her. Yes, you can come home again, even though it's just for a visit! 

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Time To Shovel Out The Studio!

After I bring new things into the studio, finish projects and find things I'm looking for I need to put some things in order.
I reorganized the fabrics I have dyed. I have them somewhat grouped by color.
There are also other stacks of dyed fabric on the shelf under this table.

These are some of my ice dyed mandalas I dyed this season. This is my ironing table I have them layered on. It is much easier to iron large items here than on an ironing board.

I have hung a few of the mandalas on my design wall so I can enjoy them while I am working in my studio
I have some projects I want to work on next organized.
Other thing are organized for donating, sharing and throwing away.
I have done my annual inspection of my fabrics and I don't have enough large pieces to donate for charity quilts as usually do. That could change as I work this season.
I have also been cutting strips of a variety of fabrics. I will make a very limited number of kits for my Potato Chip/Sunset, Sunrise quilt. Stay tuned for availability.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Glitzy Bags

It has been quite some time since I have sewn anything other than quilts.
Tonight after I finished sewing the facings on a quilt I decided to make these two glitzy bags.
I use them for so many things. Love the color of these two!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

My Quilts For Sale Blog

This is just one of the quilts I have listed that is available for sale.
It has been some time since I set up the blog with my quilts for sale.
I have not had a link so you could find it.
I just added the link to the right column on my blog.
All you have to do is click on the link and it will take you directly to it.
I will only be listing a few quilts at a time.
If there is a quilt you are interested in that is not on this blog please contact me for the price, size, etc.
I hope this makes it easier for you to find something that makes your heart sing.
I will periodically add quilts that are available including ones you can buy in galleries.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Sunset At Cedar Key


It’s finished in record time. I showed it as I was working on it yesterday. Since then I have cropped off some of the quilt to make a better balanced design. It is easier to take away than to add.

The entire piece is constructed with hand dyed silk noil. It is fused in place. I added a little bit of detail with machine stitching.

It was free motion quilted and also quilted with an even feed foot….whatever works for the area I am working on.

I used one of my favorite edge finishes…zigzag stitching over the outer edge of the quilt.

I used a medium weight drapery fabric for the back, casing and label. The heavier weight makes the quilt hang better and also makes it easier to do a smooth zigzag edge finish.

I’m very pleased with the finished quilt and I hope someone else will be too.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Working On A Summer Quilt

It’s summer and it time to go to the beach. It you can’t go to the beach the next best thing is making a beach quilt!
I have some more to do before this is finished. Seeing it smaller as a picture on the computer allows me to really make some decisions before I finish it.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Playing With My Fabric


One way to see if I have a pleasing and balanced group of fabrics is to photograph the group and play with different graphic effects.

These are not something I will actually create but just a fun way to check how well the fabrics work together.


Another fun one with the same groups and arrangement of colors.


A different composition with some editing.


Another fun effect I created.

This is a fun thing to do and it does allow me to realize if I have a potential winner in the fabrics I have picked.


Although this produced some interesting textures it does not produce a strong balanced composition. This is just one of the arrangements I tried with the fabric I used in yesterday’s blog post design

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Under A Crimson Sky


Under A Crimson Sky  43” x 17”  $950

If you have been watching my blog posts for the last week or more you have seen me agonize over what to do with this piece of fabric.


Here are some of the more than 40 fabrics I tried to use in combination with each other to make a pleasing composition.

In the end, it only required one fabric and just a narrow irregular piece of that fabric to make the sky light up.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Looks Like Everyone Had A Great Time!


Foreground Julie and Greg.

Background  the view you see as you look out the condo window – The woods, the water, the boats hiding behind the woods,  and the bridge to the camp fire area.


Looks like they’ve done a little swimming! All of the group: Stephanie, Blake, Nicholas, Jared, Kevin and Jessica.


Cute picture of Jessica and Kevin. Not sure where this one was taken.

Thanks Greg and Julie for sharing these vacation pictures and bringing back so many memories.

I am thinking either they are on their way home or making one last memory of Eagle River.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Another Generation Enjoys Northwoods Vacationing

We started vacationing in Eagle River, Wisconsin over 30 years ago.

Over the years our family grew and they all had the chance to enjoy time there.

It has been a few years since any of us have been there.

This year my son Greg and his family are enjoying time there.


Stephanie, Blake and Jared. They look like they are enjoying themselves.


Jessica and Kevin look like they are the pillow for Nicholas’ legs.


Julie with the view of the birch trees and the water in the background.

The only one missing from the pictures is Greg which makes me think he is the photographer!

They are fishing, eating at our favorite places and doing all the things they did when they were much younger.

Kringle and fudge are necessities.

I wonder if Nicholas is still catching frogs?

Still ahead would be swimming in the indoor pool, tennis, shopping, building sand castles on the sandy beach, ice cream for lunch in town and camp fires.

They are also celebrating Nicholas’ birthday a little early. We often celebrated his birthday there and found some really special cakes.

It is a time of remembering past visits and making new memories for the family.

UPDATE: This just in…………Nothing changes!

Nicholas is still loving frog catching!

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Big And Green

We’ve had a lot of rain this spring and the yard is green.


The shrubs are huge and green except for the red one.

The trees are full and green and even the weeds are healthy!


When the house was built almost 50 years ago the sugar maples in the front yard were about as high as the first story.

Now they tower over the second story. They are actually much taller than this picture would have you believe because of the angle it was shot from.


The tall trees you see here were volunteers that were 6-10 feet high at the most when the house was built.


The clump birch in the foreground was planted 20 years ago after the second story addition was added.

There was another birch in it’s place but it had to come down so they could pour the foundation.

It is unusual that the shrubs need trimming this early in the season, but since we had two large trees and two medium size trees removed the remaining yard gets a lot more sun.

These photos do not show the evergreens nor the glass garden which is my answer to planting colorful flowers.

It’s fun to think back and realize how things change as time goes by…..or as my middle child says “Time flies when you are having fun!”

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Time For A Change

The design I was working on was not working no matter what I did.

No matter what I tried it kept telling me NO NO NO.


I really did like the whole moody night sky piece but it needed a little something else.


As I looked at it while I was doing other things and then thought about it I came up with this idea

I think the insert of this bright rose is just what it needs.

I’ll live with it for a day or a lot of days and if I still feel that way I will sew it together and have another finished top.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

I Love My Long Time Friends

Today I had a visit from two of my favorite long time friends. They were in town for their grand daughter’s high school graduation.image
We couldn’t even begin to catch up on what has been happening in our lives since our last visit. Of course I forgot to take a picture so this is from my visit to see them in Ft. Myers a few years ago.
They both are still looking great and even younger than last time I saw them.
We also discovered another one of my small world stories. When I mentioned people who were at our high school reunion in FL in January they actually knew one of the couples who I graduated from high school with who live in Ft. Myers. In fact Fred and Merle have been mistaken for each other even though they are not related.
We hope to have more time to visit this winter in Florida.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Another One Is Quilted


As much as I love to free motion quilt there was something about this one that was keeping me from quilting it.

I decided the time had come so last night I got the machine set up so all I had to do was do a few stitches on a practice sandwich and I’d be ready to quilt it.

That strategy worked.

I’m pleased to have it quilted and ready to finish the edges.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Still Experimenting


I decided I had to go back to the basic 3 and resolve them before I could add any other fabrics.

You can see I cut the larger piece of fabric into 2 parts. This was the first arrangement I tried.


I decided to reverse the bottom piece and I do like that better.


I tried filling in the sides with two different fabrics and neither one seems to work. I know I will resolve this but I need time and I need to find the right fabrics. I have so many dyed fabrics. I need something with both the right color and the right texture.

For those of you that follow my blog every day you may be getting tired of seeing this, but it is how I work.You are only seeing a small fraction of the different things I try.

I can’t rush the work if I want the best composition. Something that looks so simple can be a lot more difficult that something that is complex.

I also feel this needs to be symmetrical which is not the way I am most comfortable working.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

It Takes Time To Create

I have the some of the same fabrics on the design wall and I am trying some different arrangements.


Added two different pieces of the black dyed silk samples.


Tried a run of deep dark colors on the left. I thought it worked but now that I see the picture I’m not at all sure.


Thinking about cutting the large piece in half and using half on the bottom and the other half on the top.

I think I will actually have to cut it so I can see if the dark solids will work. I’m doubting it now.

Coming up with even what looks like a very simple composition can take a lot of time.

I live with the work on my design wall while I go about working on sewing other pieces. This gives me a chance to see things with an occasional glance to make decisions.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Breathing A Sign Of Relief

I do send a lot of packages USPS. I love their tracking reports via email messages.

Recently this doesn’t seem to be working for me.

You may have heard about the package that was supposed to be here in 2 days, took 9 days and was never scanned along the way after it left.


I sent this garment to Houston for the Quilt Knit Stitch show that will be held in Portland, Oregon August 13-15th.

It is a retrospective show of some of outstanding garments from the Fairfield Fashion show over the years.

I did not get any notifications while it was in transit.

I was so relieved to see it had been delivered when I checked the computer this morning. It DID arrive in the Priority Mail 2 day time.


The ensemble is a coat, top and skirt.

They are my original designs.

The top is an adaptation of my No Sweat Checkerboard Shirt pattern. The main fabric is a fine quality cotton sateen. I used twice as many colors as the pattern calls for and used narrower strips.

For the coat I combined parts and details from several of my Blue Ribbon Patterns and created a new original design. The coat is hand quilted with 1/2 layer of batting. It is lined in a slippery fabric to make it easy to slip on and off.

The skirt is an original draft to compliment the coat.

I am not sure what year this appeared in the show. My friend who was with me at the opening of the show said it got the second most applause of any of the garments in the show. I was thinking it might now show well on the runway but I was definitely wrong. Almost all the other garments that year were those popular at the time jewel tones with lots of glitz and glitter. I designed it as a garment that really was wearable, yet stunning.  It travelled for a year and came home in perfect condition.

Although I won’t get to see the show in Portland I hope some of you will and if you have a chance to take a photo to send me you will have my  undying gratitude.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Design Play

I am using my design wall to get ideas for possible new compositions.


Using some of my newly dyed fabrics to create Crimson Sky.


With the computer I can easily crop off some of the top fabric.


I might be a good idea to break up the magentas with this piece of fabric?

This is an  easy way to try a lot of different fabrics, combinations and proportions.

Whether I use these together or not I do now have a record of how they work.

As I study these I see things I like and things I’m don’t like. I also see things I could change with either different fabrics, arrangements or proportions.

These are things I can take my time deciding as I work on finishing some of my works in progress.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Playing With Dyed Fabrics


One way I can be inspired to make interesting work is by playing with my fabrics.


Playing and arranging fabrics in these somewhat haphazard ways can often give me ideas and combinations I would have never thought about before.


I can see fabrics that would work well together that I would never have considered putting together.

If you look at these you might think I worked with a somewhat limited palette of dye colors. In reality nothing could be farther from the truth.

I had close to 50 different colors of dye in my palette as I had all the dyes a friend gave me, as well as the dyes I already had.

I’d better get moving along on finishing some of those works in progress so I can create new work!

These are not all the fabrics I dyed this season, just the majority of them.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

I Am Having Some Issues Posting

I have not been able to make posts to my blog as I usually do.

If I do make a post I cannot edit it.

I am hoping this issue will be resolved soon.

In the mean time I will continue to attempt to make blog posts although they may be incomplete or have errors.


My neighbor Karen is the BEST baker. Last week she sent over 6 of her rhubarb muffins. They were excellent…just the right balance of rhubarb and other ingredients.

Then a few days ago she sent over the best piece of pie I’ve ever had in my life…..it was rhubarb/blueberry!

Today she brought over a baker’s dozen of her rhubarb muffins again.

Can’t you just smell them and taste them?

A Touch Of Red - Finished

I finished this quilt with a narrow red binding. It was just what it asked for to complete the piece.
I'm really happy with this.
It has been a long time since I used this much white in a quilt.
The combination of blue and pure white with a red accent is so refreshing.

Monday, June 1, 2015

A Touch Of Red

I designed this for a workshop I taught.
I used a variety of fabrics including Japanese fabrics, Austrian fabrics, Gutcheon polished and plain cottons and Hoffman cotton.
You can see the freezer paper curved diamond shapes I used to mark the quilting lines. By doing this there will be no lines that I would get marking with something else.on the work.
You can see the lines I quilted using those shapes for the quilting. I have also quilted the borders, and did some ditch quilting before I did this. That quilting follows the patterns in the border fabrics and is not visible in these photos.
The freezer paper designs can be used more than once. I just reused the 4 shapes to again mark my quilting lines. Because I used white thread for all the quilting it is not easy to see all the quilting lines.
All the curved diamond shapes have now been quilted. The only thing left to quilt are the background triangles.