23 09 2009




Welcome to the journal of my work.  I’m looking forward to chronicling both the old and the new. Ideas, inspirations, mistakes, and progress will all be celebrated.



Wheel Medallion sneak peek

18 04 2014

Finished days before it was to be displayed  at my guild’s Voices in Cloth 2014 quilt show late last month, my Wheel Medallion has been one of my most challenging endeavors in recent times.

Having taken a class with Becky Goldsmith of Piece o’ Cake fame, I felt I was much more able to execute this applique technique.  So I incorporated the applique border into a medallion quilt I had been struggling with working on.

Not yet photographed professionally, this quilt can only be seen in these partial shots for now.


Stay tuned for a better picture of the complete quilt.


I love the result, and this quilt already has a cousin under construction, using all of the leftover pieces that did not fit into the design of this quilt.  So stay tuned for that, too.


And, on a recurring note, I am finding that I have not yet shaken the fabric postcard bug.

These are a particular favorite here where I live:

bears cards


And these were made for a friend’s Cinco de Mayo-themed engagement party:

Cinco de Mayo cards

I will probably keep doing these wonderfull little gems, just because they are soooo fun (and are completed sooooo quickly).

Triple Irish Chain in Peach

11 04 2014

Another special piece from my vintage collection is this quilt done in the Triple Irish Chain pattern.   Masterfully pieced, this quilt has many extras that make it stand out from others of its kind.

The solid fabrics  in the centers of the pieced blocks add diagonal interest, as well as perfectly representing the reigning range of classic solid colors out of which many quilts were made in the 1930′s.

And all these colors, along with the patchwork piecing, pop right out of the pale peach background.

Peach Irish Chain, date unknown

Triple Irish Chain, date unknown

Helping with the diagonal focus are the solid bright yellow patches, strategically placed to run across the quilt, right through the middle of the solid blocks.

If my eyes put the bright yellow right next to the pale peach, I see a dissonance, so I am quite impressed that this quilter could see that the finished quilt would be quite powerful using these two fabrics.

Peach Irish Chain, detail

Triple Irish Chain, detail

These yellow blocks also form the center of the pieced borders, help to unify the piece, and create a fabulous spring/summer quilt.



Fabric postcard project continues

10 03 2014

I’m so pleased with the fabric postcards that are being made by fellow EBHQ guild members in anticipation of our upcoming show Voices in Cloth 2014 (details here) that I thought it best to showcase some more of them here.

I apologize for my inability to credit particular artists, but the number of cards I now have is almost 1,000, so I have long since lost track of who made what.


I hope you see something here that you might want for yourself, after making a small donation to our guild.

Please come to the Show and you will get a chance to see more fabric postcards, as well as hundreds of other wonderful fabric creations (including two of my quilts!!!).

PS–Here are all the postcards I have to date;  more to arrive in the next two weeks.

all cards

Holiday Stockings

6 12 2013

There are two new cats in my extended family, and I was reminded that they did not have stockings for the Christmas holidays, like all the others cats before them have.

Eager to remedy that situation, I made these two stockings.  I have always had fun making stockings, and these were no exception.

One for the loyal Whiskey Pete—–


And one for the lovely Bernadette—


My quilting mini-group members asked me how I got my machine to do the stitching of the names, and I had to brag that it was all done by hand, perhaps my favorite part.

Here are some close-ups—


To see some of the previous stockings click hereI hope the Florida kitties will still enjoy theirs.

Fabric postcards galore

22 11 2013

The postcard project is producing some very nice works, and I thought it was time to showcase some of the wonderful EBHQ fabric postcard artists, including Sonia Callahan, Meg Nixon, Rosemary Corbin, Susan Peck, Claire Sherman, and me.  I have remembered a few names of the names, and I’m sure I have forgotten others.  Please let me know if I need to include your name here.

It’s so much fun to see the variety of fabrics and techniques that we all have used for these small pieces.

The various themes include . . . . .   Christmas






Other characters


Free form designs


These little gems are lots of fun to do, once you have made a few to get yourself familiar with the techniques.  Let me know it you want to make some, too.

More hexagons

15 11 2013

Since I love the hexagons so much, and, in particular, the Grandmother’s Flower Garden setting, a fellow EBHQ member (and blog subscriber!) was kind enough to let me see one of her quilts.  The story is fun:  this quilt top was made by the mother of her mother’s freshman year college roommate during the early 30′s.  According to Marty, her mother was not interested in this in the least, so it sat for years, until Marty took over.  She hand quilted this beauty and now gets to sleep under in regularly.  Gorgeous.

Vintage quilt top, circa 1931 Quilted by Marty Suess

Vintage quilt top, circa 1931
Quilted by Marty Suess

A Grandmother’s Flower Garden variation that I had not seen before, this pattern has, I feel, a better depiction of a “stepping stone”, and these little groups of 4 hexagons, placed in this way,  make the hexagon “flowers” line up into rows, both across and down.  Very nice.

(The left side of the above pic is the left side of the quilt, where the maker put two rows of the “stones”.)

hexagon blocks

I was recently fortunate enough to receive some vintage pieces from the estate of a friend, so I thought I would show this, too.  When you see a pile like this in a flea market or other antique venue, grab it.  Could be a fun project.


I know I sound like someone who was born at the turn of the century, but I want to explain this picture, just in case there are those of you out there who do not recognize these.

Included in the pile of vintage items were these two pieces of fabric, and a set of three metal templates, all representing a part of my past.

Shocking fact:  the rotary cutter was introduced by Olfa in 1979, and now, none of us can imagine how we could have worked without it.  This picture shows how we would make templates out of sturdy materials and draw around the templates onto the fabric with a pencil.  The squares have the seam allowance included in the template;  the hexagons do not.  These shapes were then cut out individually with scissors.   I try to remind myself of all this labor when I look at vintage quilts with more respect.

My first quilts were made using templates, and some of the first classes I taught included techniques for making accurate templates.   We quilters have come a long way.

One more garden

8 11 2013

I recently fell into the abyss that is Pinterest.  I searched “hexagon quilt” and lost an hour looking at all the fabulous pictures of vintage as well as modern quilts using hexagons.  Very, very inspiring . . . almost as much fun as the paper pieced diamonds.

This fall inspired me to post another from my vintage collection, this variation on the traditional Grandmother’s Flower Garden quilt pattern.

I could not resist this top when I found it in Houston.  The quilter has done a great job of distributing the colors within the diamonds, and I love the bold use of the orange and royal blue hexagons for emphasis.  I’m even having trouble imagining this quilt without them.  (But I have no trouble seeing this with light blue in place of the pink.  Too boring???)

Flower Garden in Diamonds, date unknown 75" x 80"

Flower Garden in Diamonds, date unknown
75″ x 80″

This detail shows the wide variety of 30′s fabrics used, as well as the nice hand quilting by Quilting Plus.

Flower Garden in Diamonds, detail

Flower Garden in Diamonds, detail

I remembered hearing that the hexagons that separate the “flowers” or “diamonds” in a Grandmother’s Flower Garden were called stepping stones, but I cannot find that fact through quick research.  Perhaps the “stepping stone” label is used when these motifs are separated by diamonds instead of solid hexagons.  I’ll continue my research and update as necessary.

In the meantime, I’ll just enjoy using these fun quilts.


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