Various & Sundry 2020 #7

Other Artists

There was a discussion of Karl Benjamin at our guild meeting last week. He seems to have been pals with Ellsworth Kelley, who I have discussed here. Karl’s works are very modern quilt (in the contemporary sense of the phrase)-like. It is interesting to see how nothing is new.

Johanna Bashford has a new coloring book available as a free download. Print it on good paper! To go along with this or give you some options in terms of types of things to color, 100 museums have converted parts of their collections into coloring pages. Check out the hashtag #ColorOurCollections. Among the institutions advertising their contributions are representatives from the academic world, including Harvard University’s Countway Library and the University of Waterloo, as well as museums like Les Champs Libres and the Huntington Library.

My pal, Jeff Rutherford, was featured in an article in his local hometown newspaper. It looks like Jeff creates his masterworks from his kitchen! In his article, he mentions Timna Tarr. I have never seen her work, but was interested once I took a look around her site. Check out her Instagram feed as well.

Projects, Patterns, & Tutorials

Everyone is making face masks, which is a good thing. However, I think that there is frustration and hopelessness out there that would be alleviated by Dammit Dolls. Perhaps alternating face masks and Dammit Dolls would mitigate some of the stress we are feeling. Welcome Home Farm blog has a pattern for Dammit Dolls.

Deb Tucker’s  Blockbuster Season 5 project is in progress. Yes, the blocks use her tools, that allows you to mix and match elements. Block #48 is now available. Check out Blockbuster Season 4.

I love the look of this scrappy zipper pouch tutorial.

I have the papers and the book to make a La Passacaglia quilt. I don’t want to start it until some of my other handwork projects are finished. I keep looking at examples of nice La Pass quilts and Wendy’s is fabulous. I love the colors/fabrics. I am having some trouble selecting fabrics, though I haven’t tried very hard either. Wendy shows the fabrics she started with, which is a help.

Not all of us sew garments, but we can still use pattern weights. They can help us sew outside, or with the windows open on a windy day. They can be a quick and easy gift project, because they are cute and would look great in a pouch. This free pattern calls for rice, but you can also use Beanie Baby pellets -also called Poly Pellets weighted stuffing beads**.

Twirling at the Disco would be a good leaders and enders project as you could make 4 patches while working on another project. It looks like a traditional triple Irish Chain quilt, so you might check out some books on those patterns to confirm construction.

More Face Masks

  • Watch the Modern Quilt Studio’s Face Mask tutorial on YouTube and download the free patterns.
  • DIY face mask tutorial with Kaye (video)
  • Adding a nylon layer – DH told me about this and I thought it was adding a nylon stocking layer to a sewn mask. I started thinking about the difficulties of sewing that type of fabric. When I saw the picture, I realized they were suggesting cutting up stockings and putting them over your face under the mask. Did you ever notice how people modelling masks never have glasses, hats or headphones?
  • Friend Julie has some comments about the Instructables face mask pattern, which she likes
  • Friend Julie also talks about mask making in general and what her research has told her about the best types of masks to make.
  • Wazoodle has a lot of resources for making masks, fabrics suitable for PPE type masks and patterns. I also saw anti-microbial fabrics. N.B.: I haven’t tried any of these fabrics or patterns.
  • My friend, Deirdr likes Lorrie Nunemaker’s pattern. She has adapted the pattern to work in an assembly line. It is a free download, though you can also pay her something. She has videos on YouTube which show how she assembles her mask. Deirdre made changes to her pattern was so the front curve is 1/2 inch taller, which means the mask doesn’t touch your mouth). Deirdre also lengthened the depth of the sides by an additional 1/2 inch, for the front and lining. For the filter layer, she matched the new curve but did not change the length.
  • Deirdre also likes the Martelli Enterprises pattern. Deirdre said that the Martelli Enterprises set of masks fit adults best. They are selling a set of 3 templates withn non-slip plastic for $12 which includes shipping. She found, using their templates, that her 45mm and 28 mm rotary cutters have a hard time if I am cutting more than 2 layers. The nut in the rotary cutter hits this template. She ordered a 60mm Martelli rotary cutter, which works great for straight cuts. She has a hard time cutting curves with it. She changed the way she sews these by adding an antimicrobial one-way fabric. She also uses that as a 3rd layer which can hold a filter.
  • A Dress A Day blog (thanks Julie!) tells how to add a nose wire and piping! I might even have some of that wire from a long-ago picture framing class

Pretty Quilts

I love this and may have to make one some day. Perhaps I can use the templates I bought from BettyCrockerAss to cut them?

Valerie has a baby quilt in her Etsy Shop that is awesome! I love the design and think the design could be used in other ways to great effect. If you have a panel you have been wanting to use, this might be your design.

Fabric, Products, Supplies & Tools

Now that we are all on video calls, we have to pay attention to our lighting. I have been thinking, as I spend more time in my workroom, that the lighting is awful. It could be the life sucking beige the walls are still painted. Regardless, I have been looking at more lighting. I saw the Carex Day-Light, which was recommended to me as a way to enhance the lighting for my video calls. It is also good for SAD Syndrome. I don’t usually suffer from it, but it might help when I am just plain cranky. 🙂

Color Girl Quilts (Sharon) reviews the Oliso mini iron. She comes across as simply delighted to open and try this new iron. I signed up for her mailing list just because she was so delightful. I am eyeing the Black Jack pattern she has. It is the style of a quilt I have wanted to make since the dark ages (before the Internet). I saw another quilt that was similar.

The Modern Quilt Studio has a new line of rulers called “Good Measure.” They don’t really say why these are better, though I may have missed a blog post about them, but the rulers are cool looking.

I saw some interesting Disney-esque fabrics at Wonder Ground fabrics. they have a variety of designs in different substrates.

Wazoodle sells food-safe PUL (multiple colors) fabrics. I heard about this site in the Sew Sweetness Facebook Group. I haven’t ordered from them or tried the fabric, so I can’t comment on their service or the quality of the fabric. I was thinking that I might like to try some waterproof fabric and this store might be an option.

Media, Articles and Information

Science Alert had an article about why crafting is so good for us. This was not an article just saying that it was, but it said why. One of the quotes I really liked was “According to the famous psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi** this allows us to enter a “flow” state, a perfect immersive state of balance between skill and challenge.” Flow state is a great description. Some of us call it ‘getting into the zone’.  I find that repetitive nature of piecing calms my mind. Ironing fabric (not work shirts!) also has that effect on me. The article discusses why various crafts (there was a bit of a focus on knitting) make people with a variety of disorders feel better. It is amazing that we don’t see more people knitting during meetings. I used to do that during long ELT meetings to help me focus.

The NY Times had another article about the benefits of creativity. Remember: if you don’t have a subscription, check your local public library’s online resources. This article talks about drawing and the guy who wrote the article describes how drawing helps him manage stress. If you want prompts, the prompts from the Creative Prompt Project are still available.

Frances shared a video on Rose Kretsinger.

I was excited to see a hashtag for #windmillbladesquilt. I could be all over that hashtag! However, I annoyed to see that that hashtag is being applied to Pineapple quilts! The patterns, all of them, were PINEAPPLES! It is so irritating when people don’t know their quilt patterns. Adding a different hashtag doesn’t make them a completely different quilt!

Spring Quilt Market has been cancelled, but Barbara Brackman has a virtual booth.

I am really excited for and also super jealous of my pal Jeff Rutherford. He has another local newspaper article written about him! Good job, Jeff!







**I use affiliate links and may be paid for your purchase of an item when you click on an item link in my post. There is no additional cost to you for clicking or purchasing items I recommend. I appreciate your clicks and purchases as it helps support this blog.

Various & Sundry 2020 #6

Patterns, Projects & Tutorials

A woven basket might be a good way to use up some strips and create some gifts.

Charlotte has patterns in her Etsy shop for a dragon and a unicorn.

I came across the Stitching Scientist site in my hunt for a variety of face mask patterns. She has a wide variety of free patterns including an interesting array of bag patterns, quilts, home dec and more for free.

Face Mask Patterns and Tutorials

This is a special subsection of Patterns, Projects & Tutorials for this special time. N.B: Artquiltmaker makes no claims regarding the effectiveness or function of these ideas/techniques or mask designs. The CDC has a page that talks about fabric mask effectiveness.

Mask Tutorials – here is a list of mask patterns and tutorials that have come my way. This is not a comprehensive list. There are many ways to make them and the way that works for you is the best.

Someone has put together a 7 page PDF with a list of mask patterns, ear savers and various other tricks and tips.

I have not tried all of the above mask patterns. If your favorite is not included, it is only because I ran out of time to include more patterns. Feel free to post your favorite in the comments for the consideration of other readers.


Tsundoku: The practice of buying more [quilt] books than you can read from TreeHugger.

Barbara Brackman has a great post on triangular blocks called the Three or More Sisters.

Various & Sundry 2020 #5

I deleted my Cafe Press store. I really appreciate all of you who bought things over the years, but after the second security breach and so few sales, I decided to let it go. I might open up another store in another app, but for now, I am going to use my time for other things.


I had to include a New York Times blurb about polka dots, which you know I love. N.B.:  If you don’t have a subscription to the NYT, check your local public library or your library at work.

If you need something to calm your spirit, check out Johanna Basford’s site. she has some free coloring page downloads to keep up all of our spirits. Print them out on good paper.

Brief history of Kansas quiltmakers.

Other Artists

I love to hear other people’s stories, especially positive ones. Belinda Dill went on vacation with her sewing machine and ended up in quarantine where she cheerfully worked on a quilt!

Valerie has a lot of quilts available in her Etsy shop if you don’t feel like making one.

Tools, Fabric, Supplies and Notions

Pink Door has some great bag hardware.

Stitch, the cool modern quilt store in Ferndale, is there for you in your time of quiltmaking need. They have a Build a Box program. It works like this (from the email I received) “We will be in the shop on Monday, Wednesday and Friday between 10:00 am and 12:00 pm. 

  • Call us on (707) 786-5007 to place your order.
  • Call us with your shopping list, we will fill a box with your purchases.
  • Everything is 20% off, excluding BOM.
  • You can add to your box all week!
  • You can also contact us through Social Media –  Facebook or Instagram
  • We will mail your box directly to your home”

Projects, Patterns & Tutorials

Doctors and hospitals are looking for people to make masks. Our guild president created a visual tutorial.

You’ll be behind, but you can always catch up. Edyta Sitar is hosting a Quarantine Mystery Quilt Quilt-a-Long. The blocks aren’t difficult, so you should be able to catch up in a few days. Gretchen is working on it and her blocks look really good.

Charlotte has a tutorial up for dyeing hanks of Perle cotton. I didn’t know you could buy a big spool of white! Of course, I never thought about it either.

Various & Sundry 2020 #4


I read this essay on receiving a quilt as a gift and really thought it was spot on.

Remember Mel from the Great British Baking Show? Well, she is making a quilt along with a co-presenter on a podcast. It is described as “Mel Giedroyc is quilting. No really, she’s making a quilt. … Each week on this brand new podcast follow along as Mel Giedroyc and her presenter pal Andy Bush add to their patchwork quilt with new squares of material donated by friends, famous types and most importantly the listeners! They’ll find out the stories behind the fabrics, develop their sewing skills and naturally, have a big old chat. And a cup of tea. And probably some biscuits.… A Somethin’ Else production. ” I haven’t had a chance to listen yet. What do you think?

I found an article on the group project to finished a deceased quiltermaker’s map of the US.

Barbara Brackman talked about Kim McLean recently in a blog post. Kim makes quilts based on traditional designs (lots of applique’). She makes them fresh and new by using Kaffe Fassett Collective fabrics. One of the things Barbara mentions is the trail of inspiration Kim used for one of her quilts. I found it so interesting. It reminded me of that scene in the elevator in 9 to 5 where the secretary is talking to the stock trader about how she came up with the idea of a trade or stock purchase.

Quiltmaking hits the mainstream on CBS This Morning with Jenny Doan!

Want to know about Rose Kretsinger? Thanks to Frances of the QuiltFiction podcast and the Off Kilter Quilt, I can offer up a video. “Assistant Curator of Exhibitions, Jonathan Gregory, discusses the life of quilt designer Rose Kretsinger (1886-1963) in this 2009 video from the International Quilt Study Center & Museum archive.”

Patterns, Projects and Tutorials

I saw flower pincushions and they made me smile. I thought I might be able to figure out the pattern by looking at the photos, but I think this is one pattern I would have to buy.

HandyLim Mum has a wordless double zipper pouch tutorial. It is surprisingly effective. Yes, I want to make one.

From Sewing Times, another wordless tutorial, comes a great cosmetic or go on retreat small bag. It has outside pockets and a small handle. Yes, I want to make this one, too.

Pink Pony Designs is a new designer of bags to me and she has great bags. I really like the shape of the Hollywood Handbag. She also has acrylic templates for some of her bags, which can be used with a rotary cutter to cut out bags. Her work is gorgeous – lots of leather (fake leather?), etc. She has a few free patterns as well.


Check out the gallery of improv quilts by Janet Steadman at the Pacific Northwest Art School.

Paul Klee’s personal notebooks are now online.

Barbara Brackman has a blog post about the pattern Broken Circle AKA Suspension Bridge. I really love the first example in red and white.

Other Artists

I sometimes mentioned QuiltDivaJulie. She makes a ton of tops! Recently she referred to a friend, Lynne Tyler, who is telling the story of how they met. Lynne is illustrating the series of posts with quilt mages. One REALLY grabbed me. It is a letter quilt, but the letters spell out the names of colors. Not blue, red, green, but turquoise, vermillion, malachite. I love the letters, but I also love the ingenuity in naming the colors. It makes them exotic, fabulous.

Supplies, Tools, Notions and Fabric

I found one of the best machine reviews I have read. The review covers a Juki TL-2200QVP Mini, mainly, but mentions other machines as well. I don’t have a Juki, but I have several friends who love theirs.

Various & Sundry 2020 #3


Barbara Brackman has a wonderful quilt she has been puzzling over with a friend. She is calling it Friendship Knot, but I get the impression they don’t know where the quilt design/pattern came from. Check out the block! It is so interesting the way this pattern is put together. I might want to make this quilt. 😉

This is not a political blog and I am not for or against any candidate right now, please no political diatribes. However, when I see a quilt on the wall of a politician’s office, I have to take notice. I really want to know the story behind the quilt on the wall. Is it his? Is it part of the office decor? Who made it? This is a NY Times article, so you may have to access it through your public library.

I saw a series of books on color by Michael Pastoreau. To date he has written volumes on blue, yellow, red, green, and black. I haven’t read any of these books, but I think I will need to see if the library has them.

According to a website, drawing is the fastest and most effective way to learn.

Doing Good

You have seen the Color Strip/Chunk quilt tops and the Color Improv quilt tops I have been making. I talk about them all the time. I recently saw Quilt Diva Julie’s blog and was inspired by some pieces she is making.

Classes, Lectures & Workshops

Weeks Ringle has a really great post on preparing for workshops.

I found a video workshop talking about box corners for bags. The presenter talks about creating box corners of different sizes with the theory behind the process. Sara Lawson, Sew Sweetness, also has a tutorial about boxing corners. It is focused on using her boxing corners ruler tool. The two methods are slightly different. In Sara’s tutorial, the choice of how large to box a corner seems a little arbitrary.

Sara also has a tutorial on tapering corners. For pillows and similar projects, tapering the corners actually makes the corners look more square. Not tapering the corners can (for some mathematical reason, I am sure) make them look very long and thin. In the tutorial, she shows a paper template, but she also, now, sells a rotary ruler version. I don’t see a link to the paper template, but you can make your own by looking at the example in the video.

Fabric, Supplies & Tools

Ever since I read Sarah’s blog post about the Janome M7 Continental, I am in love. I think I become enamored with each new machine that Janome releases!

Janome M7 Continental
Janome M7 Continental

Janome claims that “one of the favorite features is that the M7 has the industry’s largest sewing space available on any household use machine. With 13 ½” of work space, a total work area of 17.81”, more than 3” in the needle/needle plate section, your sewing capacity will improve all around. With an added extension table of 26.77” X 15.75”, you’ll have even more work space to utilize! Check out the M7.

Heidi Proffety has a 3 part series of videos where she gives an in depth look at the M7 and its features, all three parts of her tutorial can be found on their Facebook page or on YouTube.

I have a KAMsnaps installation kit. Crafty Gemini recommended it and I used it for my 4-Zip Organizer. I had a hard time with it, so I was pleased to see a video about using it. I am not sure if the video helps, but I will try again to get the KAMsnaps to work on my project.

Lauren Mormino has a selection of bag hardware.

Other Artists

I really like the interesting circles in this quilt.

Patterns, Projects, Tutorials & Designs

If you want to use Illustrator to design quilts, check out a page on the Adobe site.

Barbara Brackman has a block on her blog called Dog Star. She shows a quilt that is really cool looking.

Pouches have been on my mind. Perhaps because of the fabulous gift pouches I received recently. A long time ago, I visited Kelley and she gave me the zippers for a Triple Zip Pouch. I hunted down the directions and think it might be time to make it. I might have to make two and send one to Kelly. We’ll see.

I have not made a Bionic Bag; I have made several Sew Together Bags. However, I found a video (I know! Why I am watching videos is a whole different issue) that I thought compared the Sew Together Bag with the Bionic Gear Bag. I was wrong. The video compares three versions of the Bionic Gear Bag: The Mother Lode, the Bonza and the Original. I don’t know the sizes, but the Mother Lode kind of looks like it might be comparable to my All Rolled Up Tote. The presenter also mentions a baby version. You can find the pattern for the Baby version on the downloadable products page. If you want to make the Bonza version, check out the page of workshops and video tutorials. That page has a good close-up of the features of the bag as well.

Recently, I mentioned the Knot & Thread Hello Pouch pattern. While checking out other videos, I saw a free tutorial for a similar pouch tutorial from Olfa. I haven’t made either bag and I can see some slight changes, but essentially they look the same. This presenter, Lauren Mormino, does everything on camera. The sewing was great, but I sped through the opening of her new rotary kit and all the cutting. She doesn’t have any step-outs prepared in advance. This is a really quick project. I would definitely bind the raw edges on the inside. She deals with the vinyl in a different way than I do. Check out my tips and tricks for using vinyl if you don’t have a similar machine to hers.

I also found a slightly different vinyl bag from So Sew Easy. These make great project bags or ways to organize your fabric closet or supply check. This video has a very interesting method for enclosing the zipper. I want to think about how I could use it for other projects.

There are a whole bunch of zipper pouch tutorials in one place at Threading My Way.

A long time ago, I participated in a Sew Sweetness Purse-a-Palooza. I was looking through her older blog posts and I came across my post on her site. It was fun to see my work out there in the blogosphere.

My eye doctor asked me to put a heated compress on my eyes each night, which I thought might be easier if I had an eye mask. I went looking for a tutorial since I have fabric and rice here at home. I found one which starts out talking the author’s optometrist as well. Chloe of Nurturing Creativity has tutorial called “How to Create  a Heated Eye Mask.” How perfect is that?

If you like Zen Chic, I stumbled onto her free pattern page.

As I wandering around the web, I also came across the Moda Blockheads 3 project. I am sure most of you know about this, but I wasn’t in the loop. Lots of interesting blocks. The Zen Chick LOVE block would make great pincushions.

I saw this super cute coffee cozy.

Various & Sundry 2020 #2

Many of you have chosen words of the year. I was reading Friend Julie’s blog and she brought up some interesting questions related to her word of the year, Worth. I have never found this to be a useful exercise, though I haven’t really tried either. Periodically, I use a book like 365 Tao and write about the reading of the day. Recently I found another book, , which will work the same way. Gretchen is also doing a Word of the Year project. She has never done one before either, so watching her progress might be enlightening.

Projects, Patterns & Tutorials

Gretchen of 120 Blocks wrote about a BOM that I glanced at then passed by. She writes “Last week (I think) Marie Bostwick sent out a newsletter with information about a BOM that she was doing with Stitchin’ Heaven and Deb Tucker. You can find the information from Marie here but you have to get to the end of the page. The quilt is huge (102 x102) and if you sign up by March 1 you get a Studio 180 ruler of your choice to use to make the quilt. The colors are pretty much something I might like in my room, so there you go. You can find more of the information from Stitchin’ Heaven. Make sure you read Marie’s post first though, because she has a coupon code.” The coupon code is worth reading Marie’s blog, which is worth reading even without the code. She also introduces readers to her three oldest books. I tracked them down a few years ago and read them. They are worth reading.

My friend, Deirdre, sent me a link to Sailrite. She said that they have a lot of great how-to videos. The initial link was to a Roll Top Backpack tutorial. There are a wide variety of bag projects, which can be found under their How-to – Hobby Projects menu. They also have a variety of hardware. I haven’t purchased anything from them, but the variety is staggering and I will take a look when I need some bag hardware.

There is an article that discusses drawing as the best way to learn.

I collected a group of patterns using Altoid tins. My DH saves them for me because of the Travel bag I have made using them. One is an Altoid Pincushion Tin, Pincushion & Notions Box, an altered Tin Mini-Purse, a Tin Cord Keeper,

The deadline for the 25,000,000 Stitches Project is coming up fast (final deadline April 30), so I am seeing a lot of posts, including one from Julie, about people’s progress. Rhonda’s piece is gorgeous and it was all I could do not to snatch it out of her hands at the meeting last week. the work people are showing on IG is mind boggling. I’d love to know the effect on handwork that this project has had. Do more people do handwork now? Were people introduced to handwork, having never done it before? Did people return to handwork for this project?

Do you need to know how to create quilt designs in Adobe Illustrator? Adobe has a a bunch of tips and some Illustrator files from well known quiltmakers for download.

Fabric, Supplies & Tools

Sarah Ann Smith gives a thorough overview of the new Janome M7 Continental in a recent blog post. As a bonus, you can learn how to create a French seam in this post.

Sarah also talks about pre-shrinking fabric. She discovered that some of her fabric that had not been pre-washed shrank after pressing. Read her scientific study, especially if you don’t pre-wash your fabric.

Articles & Information

What do you think about the color orange?

Paper Patterns, Projects and Tutorials

As you may know, I enjoy making wreaths from folded paper. I talked about the Mette Ring a few weeks ago. Have you made one?

This video shows a Christmas or Halloween wreath, which is really only designated with those themes because of the colors. You could make them any color.The end result is small. Also, the video is in an Asian language I don’t speak. The folding directions can be followed, however, whether you speak the language or not.

When I found the Mette Ring, I also came up with some other folded stars as well. One is a traditional 5 pointed star that I really like, though I haven’t tried it yet. The video is narrated in German by Ms. Wellpappe, so I can follow the words. Those of you who don’t speak German will be able to follow the visuals. I found a video with no words from OrigamiV that makes the same traditional 5 pointed star. The Stella di Natale star is not folded paper, but the folded and cut or snowflake method. This video is from MamaeBambini and has music, but no words. A similar version can be found at Copa de Nieve. Folded paper Christmas trees would be fun gifts for colleagues at work. The Reda Star by kamikey is a two color folded star. Finally, the Scandinavian star is traditionally made from paper, but the Shabby Fabrics video shows how to make it from fabric.

Many of these patterns have different videos from different designers, so you can find the one that works for you.

Exhibits & Shows

Barbara Brackman has a list of antique quilt shows through the Spring of 2020.

Kaffe Fassett’s house is pictured in a magazine called the Wealden Times, a lifestyle magazine of Kent and Sussex. I want a chaise longue recovered in Philip Jacobs fabrics! I love the bold wall colors including that violet. Perhaps I’ll paint my workroom that color. It would make me happy,b ut it would wreak havoc on color selection, I think.

I like the quilts on this site, but I almost like the quotes better!

Other Artists

My sister told me about Melanie Douthit.

Various & Sundry 2020 #1

2020 already! How are you? How was your New Year?


The series quilt page was woefully out of date, so I have updated it with some of the more recently finished FOTY quilts and more Niece-phews quilts.

I also updated the Niecephews series page and the FOTY quilts page so they are up to date. Enjoy.

Posts are intermittent as I try to get a new laptop online. Stay tuned.


In December, Barbara Brackman posted about Dresden Plate quilts on her blog. This is a pattern that classic quiltmakers and modern quiltmaker alike love and have used. The green Dresden Plate quilt at the top of the post is a favorite. I love the yellow the maker included.

Pantone has released its new color of the year: Classic Blue. It is described as “PANTONE 19-4052 Classic Blue is a reassuring presence, instilling calm, confidence, and connection.” It makes me wonder if the choice was made around US politics – to exert some kind of subtle calming influence?

Other Artists

In my work, I read about a lot of random stuff, but since my company supports artists, many of the stuff I read include artists. Lately, I came across Mr. Doodle. His work is amazing. slightly obsessive, but amazing. It could be the inspiration for your quilting designs.

Patterns, Projects, & Tutorials

I am obsessed with the Minikins patterns by Sara Lawson. I don’t know why as I have PLENTY of bag patterns. I want to get Season 2 and make the Daytrip Wallet. I found a hack for one of the Minikins Season 1 patterns, I Spy pouch, that I thought was interesting. Makers could make these for their kids to spread the fabric love.

I sincerely dislike it when I hear a quiltmaker say “Oh, I could never do that!” It really makes me crazy! How do you know you can’t do something if you never try? Apparently Weeks Ringle heard this a lot when they showed a curves quilt at the recent Quilt Market. Now they have a Lavish-a-Long, which is a group effort to piece curves. You can do anything you put your mind to, because you are fabulous and smart and determined!

I went to Knot & Thread because I saw a pouch that was half vinyl. It is called the Hello Pouch and is available in the Knot & Thread shop. I am preventing myself from buying it as I just bought another pouch pattern AND the hardware to make it and I haven’t made it. In exploring the site, I also saw some tutorials, including one about installing a new zipper pull. More tutorials, just in case, are always good, right? The Clearly Pouch I mentioned a few weeks ago is a different style, but as you may remember also has vinyl on top.

Other Crafts

I love the Paper Wreath I make on occasion. One day i went looking for similar projects. I went on a paper buying jag some time ago and the paper is languishing. I found the Mette Wreath. it isn’t quite as dramatic as my paper wreath, but it is is also less delicate.


Barbara Brackman talks about an Everyday Luxury at the Smithsonian about silk. It includes a number of awesome sick quilts, especially crazy quilts. If you can make it, go see the exhibit and report back. I really like hte Bates family quilt.

Various & Sundry 2019 #12

I really can’t believe it is November — oops! I meant I can’t believe November is ending. The good part of November ending is that it is the YM’s birthday today. He was born on a Saturday so this particular birthday is special to me. I am now the mom of a 23 YO! How can that be? The bad part of November ending is that there are very few days left to make projects for Christmas! Yikes. On so many levels, time is just flying along.

I updated the Quilt Gallery Menu (check the header) to include more quilts, tutorials and pages of series quilts. Take a look!


OMCA: Woman Statue
OMCA: Woman Statue

As I mentioned in two recent Burning Man posts, I went to the Oakland Museum of California. I did see some other things besides the Burning Man exhibit. One was this beautiful statue that was 40 feet tall and a fraction of the original’s height.  The lines and shape of the body are simply amazing.

Projects, Patterns, & Tutorials

Charlotte Hawkes of Scrapitude fame is coming out with a  new mystery quilt in January. The kickoff post, which I found a little confusing, is already posted on her site. Thanks to Valerie of Evening in the Garden for the link.

Remember I talked about Mega Pinnies? I saw a post from the designer where she showed a whole bunch of different Mega Pinnies. It is fun to see the different fabrics used. Also, I found that you can buy the pattern from the author’s Etsy shop.

LillyElla of Undercover Maker Mat fame is back with a Mini Maker Station pattern. This would make a great swap gift or a great gift in general.

The Daredevils QAL is finished, but I found one block I forgot to post. Katherine’s Block is one of the best of the bunch. I like the way the circle is split.

Scissor cozies are something I haven’t thought about, but I saw the tutorial and thought that it would be a nice idea for a future gift grouping.

In the paper department is a site that has origami and paper folding. I saw a project called a Mette Ring. I have to try it as it reminds me of a slightly different take on a wreath.

The directions for Bonnie Hunter’s newest mystery quilt, Frolic, were posted today. You can see all of the posts on the Frolic Mystery Quilt tab.  The directions are only free for a limited time, so make sure you save them if you can’t start now.

Fabric, Notions, Tools & Supplies

SewTites is having a sale through December 2. Get some! They are fabulous!

I found glitter vinyl on the Sew Hungry Hippie site. I cant’ remember if I told you about it. If I did then this is a reminder to go look at it. I think I might be in love with glitter vinyl!

Other Artists

Charlotte of the Slightly Mad quilt Lady talked about how to discuss your quilts in a recent post. She follows up on that topic in an even more recent post by clarifying that ALL quilts have a story and we must all tell their stories. I agree. If we don’t tell the stories, they will be lost and that is a crying shame.

Because of my job I found out about a site called Behance. Of course, I did a search for ‘quilt’. I update it every day and look to see what I can see. Through that site, I found Karlee Porter’s site. Her lion is fabulous!

I have heard of Lynn Carson Harris before. Today’s Quilter, perhaps? I don’t remember. I just know that I like her quilts: lots of pieces. She is also working on a  series about domestic abuse. This is a subject near to my heart, not because of personal experience, but because it primarily (not exclusively!) affects women and children. A number of the donation quilts I make are sent to a local domestic violence shelter to comfort the victims who have taken shelter there. The quilting on LCH’s quilts is wonderful.


I often think of QALs and SALs and BOMs as another thing on my to do list. Gretchen posted about why she likes them and it really made me think about these group projects in a different way.

I always think of creatives like musicians as just making their music and that is enough creativity for them. Boy was I wrong, at least in the case of Sir Rod Stewart. He has worked on a creative, non-musical project for 23 years and he finally shows it off. I can really understand how he would want a break from the music, but would still want to be creative. This is amazing and I am thrilled he finally showed it off. I use a lot of creative problem solving at work, but it is a lot different that the part of my brain that is used when I sew. Both are good. I can see the benefits of engaging in both.

The article about drawing to learn is really interesting.

Amish Acres in Indiana is set to close. My friend thinks it would be a great quilt retreat and I should buy it.

Frances of the Off Kilter Quilt and Quilt Fiction fame wrote a long essay about why she makes quilts, the making of quilts in general, quilt stories and selling quilts. She writes “I said I wouldn’t go into quilters underselling their quilts on Etsy, but I will say that while it bothers me, I think I understand why you might sell a quilt easily worth $1,000 for $250. For most quiltmakers, the point of making a quilt is not having a quilt, at least not after you’ve been quilting long enough to have more quilts than you know what to do with. The point of making a quilt is making a quilt. In this way, making a quilt is similar to taking a trip to Paris. You purchase fabric and thread just as you would an airline ticket. Working on the quilt is akin to spending a series of gauzy fall afternoons walking along the Seine or through the Tuileries Garden. You wouldn’t count that time as billable hours. You are passionate about being there—in fact, being there is part of what gives your life meaning. When you return home, you don’t expect someone to reimburse you for your travel expenses. The cost of the travel (the fabric, the thread) is the price you were willing to pay for the experience.  ….” Go read the rest of point #4 (or the whole thing!). It is well worth your time. She makes some excellent points.


Philip Jacobs has a Zazzle shop full of items covered by his designs.

Check my Cafe Press store for holiday gifts.


Edgestitch had a reminder to go get a Mammogram. When was your last one? I want to extend that out to general self-care. I get a haircut religiously every 5-6 weeks. I get a pedicure every month. I exercise. These things cost money and there are other ways to care for yourself. I think it is  important to care for yourself because you can’t care for the others in your life if you are falling apart. What is your self-care routine?

Various & Sundry 2019 #11

BOO! Happy Halloween! For those of you not celebrating, here is an action packed V&S for your reading pleasure.

The Canva Color Wheel describes itself as making color combinations easy. I haven’t checked it out in detail. Let me know what you find out.

Scientific American has an article on innovative and ancient uses of silk.

Charlotte over at the Slightly Mad Quilt Lady blog writes an interesting article about the Auckland Symposium. The silver quilts are really amazing.

Charlotte also brings up some good points about talking about your work fluently in a slightly older blog post. One thing I didn’t see in the post was never to apologize for your quilt -not the design, not any flaws or errors, not the fabrics. Don’t apologize. If someone compliments you, say thank you.

Projects, Patterns & Tutorials

Sewing Illustration has some interesting patterns, especially one, called the Clearly Carry All Pouch, that has a vinyl top, which would be great for carrying stuff you need to see. I also like the Triangle Pencil Case. What a great shape!

Bonnie Hunter put out the introduction to her annual mystery quilt today. Look for her post on Frolic! A Winter Mystery Quilt.

Have you been thinking about some fan type blocks? Spiky fans? Check out Barbara Brackman’s post on the subject, then take a look at my tutorial to learn to make the blocks. She shows a number of quilts and provides some information on Karen Stone’s quilts.

Mary gave me a link to Mrs. H’s bags and patterns. The site has patterns to purchase, a few free patterns, and some tutorials. She recommends 2Minutes2Stitch for bag hardware in the US. I am always on the hunt for good bag hardware. I’ll let you know if I buy something from them.

The holidays are coming. I saw this small, but pretty needle book project that might be just the thing for a friend. Choose fresh, cheerful fabrics to banish the dark, winter days.

Need an idea for a gift or swap project? What about the stationery pouch by Minki Kim? It could be used for pens and pencils or a small purse to put in your work or guild tote.

Barbara Brackman is still going strong with her Daredevil’s Block of the Week project. Elsa’s Star is a good one and some of the examples Barbara posts are fun. The latest is Evelyn’s Star. This is the last block in the QAL, so get busy putting those tops together. In a separate post, Barbara talks about borders for this quilt.

Bonnie Hunter’s post Thanksgiving mystery quilt project is coming. She often does the introductory post around Hallowe’en, so go to the Quiltville website to look for it.

The ByAnnie company has a number of free patterns on their website. I received a catalog with a recent order and thought there were a few things that would be handy for gifts. Petit Four Baskets would be great for organizing items on your dresser, cutting table or sewing table. Piecekeeper has a handle and a zipper, so if you have not done either of those, this would be a good project for you. I am kind of partial to the Flower Wrist Pincushion. It would make a great gift. All of these projects are small and will give  you practice in making bags.

Exhibits & Events
Marianne Fons and Liz Porter have an exhibit of their best quilt at the quilt museum in Winterset. Marianne writes about it on her blog.

Fabric, Supplies, Tools & Notions

I have been buying a lot of zippers lately as I go through my bagmaking binge. I found a zipper vendor that says they manufacture zippers in LA and ship zippers internationally. I haven’t checked their site out thoroughly yet, but I am in the market for a handbag zipper so I will soon. This may be a wholesaler, which would be sad.

I saw the Smith General Store in Love of Patchwork & Quilting. They have a small, but interesting selection of fabric. They also carry finished quilts.

One of the topics in the FB Kaffe Fassett Collective group is where to buy Kaffe fabrics. This isn’t really a problem for me, but recently I checked out a few shops (very dangerous) and found that Island Quilter has a great selection of my man Phil’s fabrics.

Other Artists

I love these paper dresses – yes, paper!

Quilt Diva Julie has made major progress on her bird quilt and her zap of lightning idea looks fabulous.

Tips & Tricks

Crafty Gemini has some bag making tips in preparation for her new bagmaking club.

Various & Sundry 2019 #10


Reader Daphne writes a great blog, Fun Factual Weird Breathtaking.

Edgestitch talks about the mass market and inspirational messages. I really enjoyed this post!

An article discusses a math professor who developed a new way of piecing called ‘tube piecing’.

The ladies from Sew Kind of Wonderful went on a quilting cruise. They have some tips on what to bring to add to your comfort.

Projects, Patterns & Tutorials

Barbara Brackman has posted the next blocks in her Daredevils QAL, Willa’s Wheel, Ruth’s Compass and Harriet’s Star. Florene’s 9Patch looks like a block that could be made with the Quick Curve Ruler.

After finishing Flying Around and taking it to be quilted, I am thinking of my next project. By a circuitous route I ended up on the Jen Kingwell site and saw her State Fair pattern made in dots. I know from my experience with Ring Toss that having templates would be better, but I don’t want to buy the templates. What I want is for my Jen Carlton Bailly templates to work for this pattern. Or the Quick Curve Ruler? Could I use that? Testing is required. I just want to make something fast. I don’t want to test (she says now).

You’ll be late to the party, but you can still play along with Christa Watson’s Infrastructure QAL.

Inspiration and Ideas

Miss Lottie is back from her travels in North America and blogging again. She posted about sketching on her iPad. I heard about a new iPad app at work and have been thinking about using tablets more effectively in my work, so this is a timely post.

Exhibits & Events

Check out the SAQA auction. You definitely need more art in your life.

International Quilt Study Group Upcoming Events

  • Sept. 20: Go Behind the Scenes of the Byron and Sara Rhodes Dillow Conservation Work Room and Collections Storage at Noon. Learn about how we care for our world-famous collection and view rare gems. Cost: $30.
  • Sept. 21: “My Doll and I Explore Old World Quilts” with Sheila Green. Morning and afternoon sessions available. Cost: $20 or $16 for museum members.
  • Sept. 21: Meg Cox presents “Quilt Journalist Tells All”, our 2019 Mary Ghormley Memorial Lecture on Saturday, September 21 at 1:30 p.m. at the Prairie Arts Center, 416 N Jeffers St., North Platte, Nebraska. Free admission.
  • Oct. 4: Join us for First Friday at the International Quilt Museum from 4-7 p.m. Artist Emiko Toda Loeb will give a demonstration of her double-sided log cabin technique at 4:30 p.m. with a lecture at 5:30 p.m. FREE.
  • Oct. 5: Go Behind the Scenes of the Byron and Sara Rhodes Dillow Conservation Work Room and Collections Storage at Noon. Learn about how we care for our world-famous collection and view rare gems. Cost: $30.
  • Oct. 9-13: American Quilt Study Group and International Quilt Museum joint Seminar in Lincoln, Nebraska! Click here for more information.

WeCreate408 is offering a daily prompt for the month of October. Sign up to get the prompt that is coordinated with events in the San Jose area. Even if you do not live in San Jose, you can sign up and participate.

Other Artists

One of the blogs I read linked to her husband’s blog and showed the gorgeous baskets he made at the John C Campbell Center.

Wanda over at Exuberant Color has a list of Top 10 Quiltmaking Timewasters.

Various & Sundry 2019 #9

First! Redfin quoted me in an article about sewing room organization!

Other Artists

Ellen Harding Baker made a quilt to illustrate her astronomy lectures in the 1800s. An article was recently published about this quilt.

Exhibits & Events

The Dear Jane quilt, officially called the 1863 Jane Stickle Quilt, is on display at the Bennington Museum in Vermont August 31 through October 14, 2019 in the Textile Gallery. Regular admission gets you a viewing. Let me know if you are able to go. You can find the information on their blog.

Local Sew Sweetness meetups are coming:

  • ALABAMA – August 24th at 9am-4pm. Location: The Sewing Machine Mart in Homewood, AL. Contact: Sheila Johnson,
  • CALIFORNIA – August 31st at 11am-3pm. Location: Cotton Patch Quilt Shop, Lafayette, CA. Small fee to sew. Contact: Lisa Lien,
  • CALIFORNIA – August 31st at 11am-3pm. Location: Elk Grove Sewing and Vacuum Center in Elk Grove, CA. Call 916-714-0904 or go to the website to reserve a spot for the Sew Sweetness class. Contact: Lisa Lien,
  • DENMARK – August 31st from 10am-4:30pm. Location: Kvinsbjerg, Dalmose. Contact: Inge Hansen,
  • MINNESOTA – September 28th at 9am-6pm. Location: Pearl & Myrtle’s Retreat Center in Anoka, MN. $11 fee to use the sewing space for the day. Contact: Amanda Badger,

The Asheville Quilt Guild is having a show September 27-29. Check the website for times.

Doing Good

If you want to help AQSG raise money for their projects, send repro fabrics to them for their fundraiser.


The Quilt Alliance blog has a story about connecting the community with quilts.

Fabric, Supplies, Tools & Notions

Have you seen the new state panels from Whistler Studios for Windham? The California panel is really cool! I saw them at Hawthorne Supply and my ideas are racing for another shirt for DH.

I think I will go on a bagmaking binge after finishing Flying Around. In preparation, I watched a Sara Lawson/Sew Sweetness video on applying Odicoat to make fabric water resistant. Sara talks about making bags, such as lunch bags or cosmetic bags wipe clean using Odicoat. As mentioned, I often use the iron-on vinyl to help protect the bottom of my bags. This is not ideal since the bottom of the bags needs to be completely enclosed by stitching to avoid peeling. The iron on vinyl that I have used has never peeled, but I don’t want to risk it. I think the Odicoat might work better since you paint it on the fabric, so you can put it where you want. The video doesn’t talk about sewing it (does the needle stick?), though it looks like it wouldn’t be a problem.

If you want to know what Pellon Products are used for or see a description, I found a chart. Sara of Sew Sweetness has a blog post that discusses how to use various products (smaller list, but what she uses for her bag patterns) and some of their qualities. I am searching for a massive chart that compares different interfacings from different manufacturers. Other articles about interfacing are:

  • Sew4Home: detailed information and history of interfacing with a printable chart
  • SewMamaSew: article on a variety of non-Pellon interfacings with lots of photos and links to patterns. No real chart.
  • SewMamaSew/Amy Butler: interfacing guide
  • Pellon: a variety of printable information sheets on interfacing in chart form. Limited to Pellon products

I use vinyl on some of my bags. It is a little boring, so when I saw that Glitter Vinyl was available, I put it on my list to buy. You have to buy half a yard, which is a lot if you are just making a small pouch, though I could make another bag out of it.

Projects, Patterns & Tutorials

By the time you read this, there are probably a few other blocks posted for the Daredevils Block-a-Long. As I write this, the second block, Bessie’s Sunburst, the third block, Hazel’s Star, & the fourth block, Helene’s Star have been posted. I really like Helene’s Star!

PolkaDotChair has a list of “5 Foundation Paper Piecing Tips Perfect for Beginning Quilters.” You’ll have to tell me if they are helpful as I don’t like foundation piecing and probably won’t try them out.

MellySews has a tutorial for the zipper pouch we used for the recent Community Quilt Sew Day. There are tons of tutorials on the site. You’ll spent hours there. 😉

I was trolling hashtags on Instagram for new bags. Not that I need more bags, but you know. I can’t stay away. Anyway, I found a portfolio that is very interesting and would be great for someone getting a new job or being appointed to a committee. I don’t know if it would fit a composition book, but this would be an even greater pattern.

Sew Sweetness has a pattern and video bundle on sale until Sept.2. Yes, I bought it, but I haven’t made anything yet, but will. I was tempted by the Minikins Season 2 collection, because I like that Day Trip Cell Phone wallet. I held off, though.

Want to choose from a number of free tutorials to make wonderful small gifts? Take a look at the Sew Hungry Hippie Free Tutorials page. The page also includes a 1 hour basket tutorial made from vinyl.

Sara also has a free pouch pattern called the Persimmon Pouch available with a video! This looks similar to the Crafty Gemini pouch that Angela made for me. I am sure they are very different. The blog post has a link to download the pattern, an embedded video tutorial and a supply list. The pattern includes 3 sizes. She doesn’t, however, show the inside.

Need to know how to sew vinyl? Check out the guide from Sew Hungry Hippie.

Various & Sundry 2019 #8

Other Artists

Friend Julie put up some links that I wanted to include here. However, there turned out to be too many, so I am linking to her Cornucopia post. Check out her links. I especially like the no bulk elastic join, which I think could be really useful!

I like the red blocks in Julie’s Luminous quilt. They give me a new idea for my strip donation quilts after I finish the ones I am working on. I wrote more about this a few days a go. What do you think?

You may have heard that Rosalie Dace was deported when she tried to enter the country to teach recently. The Quilt Show posted the story of what happened to her.

My guild is contributing stitches to Jennifer Kim Sohn’s 25 million stitches project. This is described as a public engagement art installation. If you or your guild want to participate, there are instructions on the site. The final deadline is Apr 30, 2020.

I like the quilting on this dogwood quilt. I also like the pattern and the color choices.

Laura Kemshall has an update on the Ruby Star Project.

QuiltDiva Julie has a page dedicated to her workroom. She has a lot of great ideas for storage and workspaces. Her DH seems very handy with a  hammer and saw!

Projects, Patterns & Tutorials

Love of Patchwork & Quilting is starting a new block of the month program.

I delved into one of (I think??) the Modern Quilt Guild’s sites after getting a link in an email. I don’t know if they have changed the site or there are multiple sites, but I didn’t recognize it from where I had been before. I looked around and came across a section on virtual bees. There are some interesting and, at least one, moving stories included. What was not included was things that are problematic about any kind of round robin. I have experienced poor workmanship, bad fabric (ugly and poor quality) and projects disappearing. I am sure my experience is in the minority and I did have a couple of good in person experiences, but I stay away from these types of projects as I see them as possibly turning into problems or ending up as projects I don’t like or don’t want to do.

Sara of Sew Sweetness has a book club as part of her site. With each book she releases a free pattern. This time it is the Suffolk Coin Purse. This would make great gifts for guild mates.

MellySews has a whole bunch of tutorials. I was impressed with the accessories section, but there are clothing and kids sections as well.

I found a Purse Organizer pattern in my quest for zipper pouches. I think it is more like a super sized zipper pouch, or makers wouldn’t need to use it as a purse organizer, but could use it as sub-organizer in other bags. With the fabric, men could use it as well.

 A week or so ago, I was reading Barbara Brackman’s Material Culture blog post. She posted the current results of applique’ BOM she is running on her Civil War blog. She has just posted block #7 and you can scroll back through the blog (January – July 2019) to to get the other blocks if you want them for free. Alternatively, you can buy them all at once in PDF form to print yourself from her Etsy site (instant gratification). She’ll mail you black and white pattern sheets, the purchase of which is also available in her Etsy shop.

Barbara is starting up a Daredevils QAL. I talked about this before, but now it has started. She introduced the first block a week or so ago. This block is not for the faint of heart, but speaks to me and my desire for more complicated and interesting blocks. I haven’t decided if I will do the QAL or not, but am thinking about it. She has some great examples of quilts made with the first block. One thing I like about the first block is that Barbara is showing old blocks, talking about them and exposing people with new and modern fabrics to them, so we can make something new out of them.

Fabric, Supplies & Tools

Remember my Octagon 9 Patch quilt? It has been on my mind lately. If you want to make one, check out these Octagon templates from EE Schenk.

I get the Paintbrush Studios newsletter. In a recent issue, sent July 29, 2019, they introduced their Hallowe’en fabrics, Halloween Night by Katie Larson. They also said “Halloween Night will not be available online this season, so the only way to get it is through your local fabric store!” I discussed it a little with Friend Julie and we have lots of questions. What if a fabric shop has an online presence? Do they just mean Amazon and other large fabric selling sites?

Spoonflower’s newest issue is out. Yes, it is all about trying to sell you their fabric, but it is a beautiful magazine with great imagery. I like the way they combine different fabrics and show various ways they can be used. There are no internal links, apparently, so you can’t click from something in the magazine to their website. I am sure that functionality is coming. Find a pattern for zipper pouches referenced.

Scruffy Quilts was  probably the closest shop to me. I went there for a few hours periodically to take advantage of their open sew and also to take classes. The brick and mortar store closed this year. The other day I got an email, so I think their online store is still open (or open again?).

Articles, Exhibitions & Books

The Quilters’ Guild of the UK is celebrating 40 years of collecting quilts. A book about their 40 years of collecting is available through their shop for 12 English pounds. It does not appear to be available on Amazon.

The Patchwork Association of Spain (Asociación Española de Patchwork) hosts

The Craft Industry Alliance has an article about Sara Lawson of Sew Sweetness and how she uses video.

With all of the celebrations around the Apollo 11 spacecraft, I was not surprised to see an article about the seamstresses who helped ‘clothe’ the astronauts. Women, the article reports, had the agility and accuracy to make the suits to detailed specifications and with no mistakes.

Lately I have been reading magazines via RBDigital by checking them out of my library. I’d rather read them in print, but I am being a cheapskate. I also want the library to buy more quilting books and magazines. In a recent issue of Quilts and More, I saw an Acrylic Ruler Connector. This seems like a great idea! It is described as: “Extend your cutting ability with our smart design Acrylic Ruler Connector. This device bridges and holds together two acrylic rulers of any size for accurate, longer cuts. A retractable alignment guide helps square up rulers for a smooth, clean cutting edge, and folds up, out of the way, to allow for cutting on all sides. The tension handle can be pressed to not only ensure a tight grip between rulers, but serves as a comfortable place to rest your hand while cutting.” The description appears to say that users can use any ruler. Unlike the Guidelines4Quilting connector which needs their special rulers. Check out product features on the Fiskars product page. If you buy one, tell me what you think.

I also recently saw an ad for the Clover Ultimate Quilt ‘n Stitch Presser foot. It is described as “Clover’s Ultimate Quilt n Stitch presser foot is your go to for creating parallel line straight stitching and straight line machine quilting. Featuring a built in stitch ruler for guiding rows of parallel stitching. Distance can be set between needle and alignment guide from 3/8 inch to 3 inch. Easily stitch multiple rows of stitching without marking each line.” I liked the variety of measurements. Some machines have these types of attachments, so you don’t this Clover version. Check your machine specs before you buy to make sure your machine is compatible.

Duke has a celebration of 20 years of the Durham African American Quilt Circle.

Nebraska quilters have a site that preserves their stories. This particular page points to Grace Snyder who was discussed recently in the Quiltfiction FB group.

My DH sent me a link to Aimee Hodge’s Crazy Quilt style parlor throw. It is thought that Aimee worked on this throw throughout her life.


Want a dream sewing room/quilt studio? Sign up to win one with AllPeopleQuilt.

Quilts & More: 1 Block 3 Ways feature
Quilts & More: 1 Block 3 Ways feature

While reading the Summer issue of Quilts and More, I saw their “One Block Three Ways” feature. This is a great example of the power of blocks. It also shows how to achieve a completely different look from one block. I have since read another issue and they seem to have it in every issue. Check it out from the library or on the AllPeopleQuilt site.

Kind reader Colleen passed along a link to a publication discussing running a crafty business. How shopowners got started, pricing and other relevant business topics are discussed. It is a PDF and the PDF is well done and pretty.

I just heard about the Awesome Box, which looks like it could be a great way to get a variety of art from different people.

At Home with Artquiltmaker

After buying a few yards of fabric, I have again achieved the net usage of 50 yards of fabric. I have actually used over 100 yards, but the purchases have offset the total used. 41% of my total usage is for charity. I am pleased with that, though it could be better!

Various & Sundry 2019 #7

I always start out with these posts thinking I won’t find anything, yet I do! Here is another supersized V&S for your reading pleasure!

Fabric, Notions, Supplies & Tools

Edgestitch has an interesting and terrifying article about organic cotton. Terrifying as in how it affects topsoil and what the ramifications of not paying attention to it will be. More bad news for our planet. 🙁

If you want an easy way to add a zipper pocket to any bag project, you need Sara Lawson/Sew Sweetness’ new Acrylic Zipper Pocket Template (and Ruler). Slip pockets are not difficult and they can be very handy, but the measuring can be a hassle. Sara’s video shows how to use the new template to measure and mark for the slip pocket quickly and easily. It is also reasonably priced at $15 in her shop. It is definitely going on my Christmas list.

Studio Kat Designs has dotted and striped zippers. I am buying some of these next time I need zippers! They are awesome.

If you are confused about what to bring when a class list says to bring a BSK, AllPeopleQuilt has a list of items that should be included. I mostly agree with them, though I would add WonderClips and some hand sewing needles. Where I disagree is with the rotary cutting ruler. 6″ x 24″ is commonly thought of as the basic quilt ruler. I have one and do use it regularly, however I don’t use it every day. My go to ruler for almost every cut is a Creative Grids 4.5″x6.5″. Larger rulers are great and useful, but too unwieldy for small cuts. If you can only buy one ruler, I recommend a Creative Grids 8.5″x12.5″. this won’t help you much with long cuts, but it will be easier to handle when cutting 2.5″ squares and other small pieces. My other favorite ruler, which I use a lot and sits on my cutting table is the Creative Grids 3.5″x 12.5″. If you can buy a bunch of rulers, buy the 6″ x 24″, 4.5″x6.5″ and the 3.5″x12.5″. You’ll be set for awhile with these rulers. Also, you will find things you need to expand your BSK. I have paper scissors, a mechanical pencil and various other things. Collect your BSK in a travel kit so you can grab and go. As you expand your quilty life you’ll get duplicates of things and be able to keep one set at home and one set ready to go to class or Sew Day or a friend’s house.

Pink Door Fabrics has a great selection of bag hardware, including some rainbow finishes.

Friend Julie did a review of the Chaco Liner on her blog.

Maker’s Mercantile has some beautiful collections of Renaissance Ribbons for your embellishing pleasure. Among the options are sets by Sue Spargo, Amy Butler and Tula Pink.

I read recently that BLOCKBASE IS SOLD OUT! OMG! I love that software. It works with my EQ software and I don’t have to draw most blocks that I see and want to use or play with. Barbara Brackman, who announced this, also asked what could be done to improve the software. If you have ideas, let her know. You never know what might be added if you stick your oar in.

Patterns, Projects & Tutorials

Gretchen is a master at finding Quilt-a-Longs. She has mentioned two new ones in her recent blog post, The Struggle is Real. The sewing will be well on the way by the time you read this, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start the process later. The first is a QAL by Christa Watson using her Color Weave quilt pattern. I have seen a couple of other designs that have a similar look, so this stripe kind of look must be popular. If you have jelly rolls or an Accuquilt 2.5″ strip die, this is a great pattern. The second pattern is by Joanna Figueroa of Fig Tree Quilts and does homage to crochet granny square afghans. It uses her Crochet pattern (no crochet involved!). It is a great design.

I have become accustomed to wearing an apron when I cook. This isn’t natural for me, but after ruining a few favorite t-shirts, I trained myself. Now I find aprons fun to make and great gifts. I found a list of free vintage style apron patterns on the Betty Cooks Lightly site. #19 on the left is hilarious looking – slightly flirty, or maybe tarty, but sort of fun also. There are a couple I would like to try. I need to try the apron patterns I have, however, first.

AllPeopleQuilt’s recent newsletter had a nice list of gifts for your sewing buddies. Since it is July, I thought you might be starting your holiday gifts. Some are reused from previous lists, but one might catch your attention so take a look.

I have a dessert roll of V&Co Ombre confetti fabrics. I want to get a dessert roll in the new colors as well, but am not sure what shop has dessert rolls. I have been looking at projects using dessert rolls (5″ x WOF). I found a great sampler on the Moda blog. I don’t think it is really what I want to make, but I love the variety of block sizes and might just be put off by the colors. How would it look in my colors?

Need some Jelly Roll Patterns? U-Create has some great designs. The fabric has a lot to do with the way the quilts look, I know. Remember: you can cut your own 2.5″ strips, if you don’t want to buy a jelly roll. I highly recommend this!

I came across a Bonnie Hunter block, Straits of Mackinac, that I adore. You can find in a post of hers from 2016. The quilt pattern is in her latest book, String Frenzy. I am put off my strings, but I think the /block/quilt could look very nice with scrappy fabrics and no strings.

I have a dessert roll (pre-cut) and have been looking for pattern options. I ran across the Project Jelly Roll page, which has a lot of resources, if you are a fan of jelly rolls and other pre-cuts. They are big on National Jelly Roll day and inform visitors of the exact date frequently.

Kevin the Quilter is hosting a two color quilt summer sew-a-long. Clue 1 was just posted and the Introduction is also available. I think this is more than a sew-a-long, but also a mystery quilt.

Bonnie Hunter has a new leaders and enders challenge for summer. You can find it on her free patterns page. I haven’t been to the free patterns page in awhile and was amazed at how many patterns live there! The 2019 Leaders & Enders challenge is Shoo, Fly, Shoo! The original post went live on July 4th. Bonnie Hunter amazes me. She has the most amazing patterns. I’d love to know how her mind works.

In Between Stitches has a super cool Block of the Month program called Summer Moon. The information on the In Between Stitches website was a little confusing, so I did a general web search and found, from the Jolly Jabber blog, that it is an actual Block of the Month program. However, I got the impression that there is also a book, so I went exploring. This is another Its Sew Emma book/Block of the Month extravaganza like Farm Girl Vintage, though Farm Girl was by Lori Holt and Summer Moon is by Carrie Nelson. I think I like it because of the fabrics rather than the actual design. There are blocks that are similar in the various Its Sew Emma projects. All the blocks are blocks I could do without buying a pattern, but the fabric selection is awesome. Also, I love samplers.

Remember I said I love Samplers? Well, I just got the news that Barbara Brackman is hosting a quilt-a-long. It is called the Daredevil Quilt-a-long and it is a sampler with a secondary pattern. The fabric requirements and some other info has been posted, but it officially starts early in August. She has a couple of options for purchasing the patterns in her Etsy shop. I have often thought a magazine called “Really Hard Quilts” would be great. There are a plethora of easy, quick and fast quilts out there, but nothing, or few, challenging patterns. Companies are afraid to scare quiltmakers away. This quilt-a-long will challenge you. It is not for the faint of heart, but you can do it.

Media & Online Groups

I’m still thinking about blocks. It doesn’t help that I get an email about vintage blocks every time Barbara Brackman updates her blog. I mentioned Barbara Brackman’s Encyclopedia of Quilt Patterns blog a few weeks ago. It is also called Cloud of Quilt Patterns. In one of her posts was a link to Moore about Nancy blog, which is a Nancy Cabot Sew-a-Long. It hasn’t been updated since 2014, as far as I can tell, but it has interesting blocks and the author gives guidelines on how to make them. The Nancy Cabot Sew-a-Long blog mentions the 101 Patchwork Patterns site, which has even more blocks!

I did not know that Sewing with Nancy had quilting communities and online groups.

Karen K. Buckley is in a fight about her scissors, which are the best, and the ripping off of the design.

The Guardian has a story about Faith Ringgold. Please support The Guardian.

Have you heard about Elm Street Quilts One Monthly Goal?

You may have seen my recent book review on Handmade Getaway. The co-author, Karyn Valen, has a great website called I like the pattern she shows using Flying Geese. It isn’t a difficult patternand the use of fabric is fantastic. I especially like it, because she cuts them using an electric Accuquilt! i would love one of these, but I just don’t have the space to leave it out. I don’t think I would want to hide it away as I do with the hand crank version I have.


Barbara Brackman talks about Gloria Vanderbilt’s patchwork interior on a recent blog post. She makes a comment that it was the 1970s with regard to the variety and quantity of prints. I see a correlation to present day. Riots of prints are used in quilts today. I am no exception. However, in the famous quiltmaker department Kathy Doughty has a gallery full of quilts using many prints. Kaffe Fassett also uses a lot of prints and color in his quilts.

Barbara Brackman (again!!) mentioned The Business of Folk Art exhibit in NYC on her blog recently. There is a book that goes along with the exhibit. The post mentions the Honstain quilt, which is in the collection of the International Quilt Study Center, but on display in New York right now. Brackman writes that “this sampler quilt dated 1867 that has the reputation as the most expensive antique quilt ever sold ($264,000 in 1991).” She has a lot of interesting history about the quilt in her post. It is worth reading.

Other Artists

In a recent comment on my Thinking about Blocks post, Ronni mentioned her Barn Block Alphabet project. She has a tag to relate the Barn Block Alphabet posts together. I am a little unclear on what the purpose of the project is, though Ronni does talk about her love for blocks in the comments. She has a number of products at a Society 6 shop.

Marianne Fons and Liz Porter will be inducted into the Quilter’s Hall of Fame. Marianne has a post about their start and how they became quiltmakers household names on her blog. I don’t like what F&W/The Quilting Company has done to Love of Quilting, but I like the way they teach and provide guidance for quiltmakers.

Doing Good

Covered in Love is collecting 12.5″ red, white and blue star blocks for charity quilts this summer. Any star pattern and as many or as few as youw ould like are welcome.

Exhibits & Shows

QuiltDivaJulie posted about a recent exhibit featuring the color blue. I love her Plus blocks at the top of the post. The quilts are unified by the size and the primary use of the color blue. It is interesting to see the variety of blues in the various quilts. There are also a variety of styles represented.

Various & Sundry 2019 #6

I have added a lot of new items and designs to the Artquiltmaker Store. Check it out!

This is a super-sized V&S. You’ll need some time. Enjoy!

Books, Research & History

Barbara Brackman has a new block book out called The Kansas City Star Quilts Sampler: 60+ Blocks from 1928 to 1961. She signed some at Quilt Market, but I didn’t see her there.

Martingale has a great post about some historical quilts. I was interested in a family member going back and making labels for the old quilts.

QuiltFiction will be having a discussion about Quilted All Day: The Prairie Journals of Ida Chambers Melugin.

Check out Facts vs. Myths About America’s Quilting Past. After a few clicks, you can find that the answers are footnoted.

Shows, Exhibits & Media

Thanks to Sonja, there is a new exhibit possibility for you. The Century of Women’s Progress exhibit is now accepting entries. I would enter Down the Drain, but they have very specific sizes and my quilt doesn’t fit. Darn it! I could make something else and have the germ of an idea, but I don’t know if it is in the cards right now. How about you?

“The state of Tennessee has a fabulous new museum building in Nashville. Their first temporary exhibit is a quilt show up until July 7th.” Barbara Brackman talks about it on her blog and shows some fabulous photos of amazing piecing and quilting.

Frances O’Roark Dowell, a children’s writer and quilt fiction writer, has now written an essay on why she makes quilts. She has several points, most of which I agree with, especially “A well-designed quilt is deeply pleasurable in a number of ways“.

Linda and Laura Kemshall have posted another free video. It is called  Linda’s Plant Printing Concertina Books Flip-Through.

I saw a blurb about Curated Quilts. I went to the link and ended up on the Color Girl blog where she tempted me to buy an issue. She has a discount code and the issue is about curves. I have been tempted by her ruler, the Classic Curve Ruler, but have been reluctant to buy because I have and use the Quick Curve Rulers (regular and mini). I am not sure of the difference between the two rulers. I don’t want to duplicate, though I am always on board to support small woman owned businesses.

Frances also shared a video of a grandson who explores his grandfather’s amazing journals. This gives me hope that someone will care about my journals someday. It is also a very sweet piece that honors a man’s life work especially the ordinary things he did.

Atlas Obscura did an article on Crimean military quilts. The author doesn’t know much about quiltmaking, at least in my opinion, from reading the first few lines, which isn’t big news. The author also spoke to a quilt historian, Annette Gero. I had never heard of her so went looking. She is described as one of Australia’s leading quilt historians,  and has been documenting and collecting quilts since 1982. She has travelled throughout Australia giving lectures, curating exhibitions of Australian quilts and documenting quilts. There is also a reference to her in the International Quilt Study Center. Fortunately, a lot of the story references different scholarly textile journal articles, which makes me feel better after the beginning of the article. Letters are also referenced, but I wonder if journals would have helped. Perhaps some poor solider kept a journal that included how he came to making an elaborate quilt.  If nothing else, you will enjoy the complexity of the designs included in the article.

HollyAnne Knight wrote a blog post called “Why Quilters Should Ditch Stash Culture.” I have a complicated relationship with my fabric closet. I really like being able to dive in and find a fabric to finish, or start, a project. Also, most of my quilts use many fabrics so having many on hand is good. However, the finite size of fabric closet is a problem, especially when the fabric spills out of it. What do you think?

Barbara Brackman has blog retrospective/tribute to Gwen Marston’s work. The post has a lot of links to other sources if you are interested in exploring Gwen’s work further.

Doing Good

Angels in Gumboots has an update to their Healing Hearts for ChristChurch project. I wrote about this project in April. One line really made me happy and thrilled to be part of such a giving community “We are thrilled to announce that as of today we have 461 finished quilts of either green or multi-coloured hearts. In addition, we have more than 432 quilts that are either at the quilting stage or are blocks still needing to be pieced into tops. ” That is more than 900 quilts!!! NINE HUNDRED!!! Amazing that so many quilts could be made. Good work everyone!

Tools, Supplies, Notions & Fabric

Scissors are critical and frustrating. someone recently posted about their pinking shears, which are hard to open and close. I have this problem with my very expensive pair as well. While this post does not directly address the pinking shears problem, it does talk about scissor care, in general.

Some people in my guild swear by Bloc-Loc rulers. I am pretty happy with my Creative Grids rulers, so I don’t think I will switch. In case I decide I will, I found a ‘how to use Bloc-Loc rulers’ video from American Patchwork & Quilting. What are your favorite rulers and why?

I found another bag hardware site. The site has a lot of movement, which can be annoying, but it has a lot of interesting and different zipper pulls. It looks like most of the pulls are attached to the tops of zippers, not able to attach to any zipper.

I have seen thread cutters for sale and always knew I didn’t need one until I saw the one from Purple Hobbies. It looks like a little flower and uses used rotary blades for cutting. I just might need one. All of the tools and toys are 3D printed and a lot of colors are available. The owner sells other tools like pincushions and bobbin clips as well as a few kitchen supplies.

I ran across Art Gallery’s Floral Elements line the other day on the Stash Fabrics site. I love those fabrics so much and thought for sure they were out of print. I want yards of all of them!

I really love Rock Baby Scissors work. Kristy Sachs, until recently, made custom orders from commercial patterns such as Sew Sweetness RockStar bag. Now she makes what she wants and fills her shop with them. She also has an Amazon page with all of the notions and items she uses.

Patterns, Projects & Tutorials

I am a huge fan of Larissa Holland‘s 12 Days of Christmas wool felt patterns. Note: I have not made any of these. I just love them. I have too many hand projects at the moment. Once I clear the decks with some of those, I will start in on this set. Recently, I found her blog and love her style when she updates patterns. The images aren’t just there for good looks,  but are there as adjuncts to the words.

I belong to Vicki Holloway’s Creative Corner 3 group on FB. She has been prepping hexies and I finally figured out she is working towards making a temperature quilt. I had an idea of what that meant, but wasn’t 100% sure, so I went and looked it up. I am not sure I found where this phenomenon started, but I found a few links that give you an idea what to do. Mel is using the high/low temp each day and making HSTs. Mel also lists her colors for temperature ranges and how to construct the quilt. Darcy talks about making her quilt and also gives some options. Her style is more conversational. She is also using high and low temperatures, but is making the quilt from the year of her birth. Darcy has some nice charts as illustrations. I like the two quilts that Live a Colorful Life made. She talked about living in a climate that didn’t vary much, like I do. We have a lot of 50-60 degree days. She also used squares, which produced a look that was really appealing. If you search for ‘temperature quilt’ on your favorite search engine, you will come up with a variety of examples as well. I think deciding on fabrics and assigning them temperature ranges is the key.

Curves are very trendy now. ColorGirlQuilts has a great ruler, mentioned above. Sew Kind of Wonderful has a couple of great rulers, which you have seen me use in Metroscape and the Lights table runner. Recently I saw a Curated quilts issue all about curves, also mentioned above. Victoria Findlay Wolfe has been teaching her Double Wedding Ring and Pies and Points classes as well. I, recently, found a new pattern from Art Gallery Fabrics. It isn’t that different from ColorGirlQuilts and Sew Kind of Wonderful patterns IMO, but has a slightly different look because it is a Cathedral Window, essentially.

Crafty Gemini has a free tutorial on pressing seams in quilts.

Yes, I am probably obsessed with ColorGirlQuilts right now. I saw her Bikini pattern and may need to get the ruler and make that quilt.

While reading a new blog, I found a scrap challenge called Rainbow Scrap Challenge. I read through some of the blog posts. It seems that the hostess/blog writer chooses a color every month and people link up with their creations in that color at some point during the month. The blogger also had a tutorial in May for a block using orange fabric. I was sad I couldn’t link up, but I haven’t started working on orange yet. Perhaps she will choose red for June and I can link my various quilts up with her then.

Crafty Gemini has a free video tutorial called “How to Cut Fabric for Right & Left Handed Quilters”

If you want to make a Jelly Roll Rug in half circle shape, check out the video. These are good for the floor in front of your sink.

I looked at the Noodlehead site and she has a list of tutorials for bags, wallets and zips.

Are you participating in the current Bad Girl Quilt-a-Long? There is a sneak peek at the finished quilt and it looks interesting. A recent week’s blocks are similar to the blocks used in En Provence. The difference is that this block uses Bias Rectangles and En Provence uses Peaky and Spike blocks. Make sure you check out my resources on Bias Rectangles. The bias rectangles in the quilt-a-long allow you to use a lot more fabrics. If you plan to use bias rectangles, review the resources. Also, just go buy the Split Rects ruler and make your life better. If you plan to use Peaky & Spike blocks, get the correct ruler. Yes, these are specialty rulers, but they will make the cutting much easier. I use my Peaky & Spike ruler frequently.

Other Crafts

I read the Maker’s Mercantile newsletter. It is a lot about knitting, but they also talk about sewing and crochet. Franklin Habit has a column, Fridays with Franklin, or a link to the column on the blog. His writing is very entertaining. He often has knit-a-longs. The most recent one is a Counterpane Pillow Knit-Along. You can find the discussion on Ravelry. It doesn’t start until July, so you have time. It looks cool and I might do it, if I didn’t already have a knitting project. I mention it to introduce you to Franklin Habit and also to suggest another project for you. 😉 Take a look at the most recent newsletter. Make sure you scroll down a little after the page loads. The page is formatted in an odd way. You can also follow Franklin online via Twitter (@franklinhabit), Instagram (@franklin.habit), his Web site ( or his Facebook page. He is witty and fun.

Various & Sundry 2019 #5


If you haven’t looked at my Works in a Series pages recently, I would love it if you did. I created a new page for the Ends Donation Quilts, which has turned into a series.

Teachers, Teaching and Learning

AllPeopleQuilt has put together a video series to sharpen your quiltmaking skills. If you don’t want to look at my tutorials. ;-), check out the first installment of their series.

You all know how much I love Pamela Allen. The Kingston School of Art posted a great blog post about her and her gallery installation recently.

Judy Martin shared a couple of things with readers of her newsletter in an abbreviated May issue. Last fall she taped a segment for The Quilt Show in which she demonstrated how quiltmakers can play with Lone Star arrangements in the same way they can play with Log Cabin arrangements. A preview of that episode is now available. The show will air for free from May 19 to May 26. Be sure to bookmark it and go back in ~2 weeks so you can watch the full program.

Annie Smith has an amazing online class called Quilter’s Palette available. The class is ten installments in total. It teaches five ways to paper-piece a block (each different), three ways to machine appliqué, how to design-draft-and-make-templates, y-seam construction and y-seam construction on steroids among other techniques.

Merikay Waldvogel & Barbara Brackman have begun a fund dedicated to a special collection for quilt research books, patterns & ephemera. Donate on their site.

I am very sad to say that Gwen Marston has died. She died on or about April 16. I first saw the news in the Quilt Alliance Story Circle FB page. It had been reposted from Meg Cox’s page. I reposted Meg’s original post to the AQ page for your convenience.



I get a newsletter from Maker’s Mercantile. It is mostly knitting stuff. I don’t buy anything, but occasionally I consider joining a Knit-a-Long. I never do. Mostly I enjoy the Fridays with Franklin blog posts. The man eventually gets to knitting, but is hilarious. A recent post about his family really and truly had me rolling on the floor, especially with the description of his mother’s philosophy of childrearing “…my mother’s policy–just please stay outside during all daylight hours and don’t bother me unless somebody is broken or bleeding.” I don’t think my mother had that exact policy, but the TV was firmly OFF until at least 7pm every night and there were questions if lights were turned on in the house during the day. We spent a lot of time outdoors.

Glenna has the website for her longarm business up and running. Take a look!

Classes, Projects & Tutorials

I saw a couple of posts on Instagram for adorable carrot themed treat bags. Yes, Easter is over, but this gives you time to make a bunch for next year.

Tools, Notions, Fabric & Supplies

Friend Julie has a review of the Shark Applicutter on her blog. She bought it at QuiltCon. I don’t even remember her buying it, but I can see, after reading her review, that it would be a really useful tool for applique. I would have liked to have had one for working on the words in Who Am I?

Have you seen Northcott’s new Ever After line of fabric? Princesses, crowns, castles and all the fairy tale motifs. Very fun.

Olfa Ergonomic - new color
Olfa Ergonomic – new color

Olfa has some new products.  They have come out with a Pacific Blue Ergonomic Rotary Cutter, a navy rotary mat (36″ x 24″), and a premium quiltmaking set which includes a Quick Change Splash 45mm Rotary cutter, Frosted Ruler (6″ x 12″), and Navy Rotary Mat (12″ x 18″). More info will be available at booth 1139 at Quilt Market in Kansas City! You know I love my Olfa Ergonomic cutter. I do not love the yellow, so the blue would be a nice change. However, would I be able to find the rotary cutter hidden under a bunch of fabric? I don’t know. You can see images of the new products on a Canadian dealer site. Thanks to the Quilt Market Twitter account.

Tips & Tricks

Oliver & S has a guide to doing laundry. The good news? You are probably washing your clothes more than you need to! YAY! More time for sewing!

One of our favorite quiltmakers, Christa Watson, has a tutorial on how to build a design wall. Remember that Quiltin’ Jenny has a tutorial as well.

Paper & Other Crafts

I can’t resist posting some tutorials to other crafts. I went on a bit of a paper folding jag the other week when I was at Powell’s in Portland. I wanted to find a book on folding paper to make things like wreaths, similar to my paper wreath tutorial.  I didn’t find what I wanted so I went searching the web for what I wanted. I found several:

  • Paper Star link – not in English, video tutorial
  • Modular Braided Wreath link – video tutorial
  • Modular Braided Wreath #2 link
  • 3D Paper Star Decoration  link
  • 5 Pointed Origami Star link
  • Cut & Braided Paper Star link


If you haven’t read SherriD’s recent comment, go and read it. Her comment embodies why I write this blog. I am so excited that some of what I write has inspired her. Thanks to all of you lovely readers. You inspire me and warm my heart, too.