I'm glad you stopped by my blog. I am happy to share all the content with you and hope that you find something here that is helpful. However, everything here - text, photos, recipes, and so on - is my personal property and has my copyright on it. You may only copy and use any of it with my written permission. Ahh, but you already knew that, didn't you?

Friday, September 23, 2016

What Is Happening Here....

Washing and ironing fabrics.
It has taken me since June to get my health under enough control to have cataract surgery. I had my second eye done a week ago. Hooray! It will be the end of October before I can get new eyeglasses. Sigh. So, even though my vision is greatly improved already, I can not see with my old glasses and can't see without them. It is making me crazy. I use readers for up close, but they really don't work well. So, to occupy myself, I am washing and ironing 1930's fabrics that have been stashed away.
Above are some nice size pieces that I have found. Usually the pieces I find are not so nice, size-wise.
These are pretty nice, but smaller. Sometimes I take quilt tops apart. Above are some nice setting triangles and (my favorite) plain alternate blocks.
This is part of a pile that came from some unknown lady's stash. Each piece was tightly rolled up and tied. It is amazing to me that they survived since the 1930's. I bought a bunch of ziplocks full of the little bundles in an antique store. It was extremely time consuming to untie each bundle, hand wash them, soak them if necessary, starch and iron them.
Of course sometimes I come up with quilt pieces. This is another pain in the neck to get to a usable state.
Once in awhile you get lucky. I found these at an antique shop in Paducah when we were there for the quilt show. Some of these are cut from yardage. They were priced by the piece and not by the yard. I just cut off a piece of each one and didn't wash the entire yardage. It would be a good guess that a quilter from the 1930's had quite a stash of fabrics.
This answers one of the questions that people ask me the most - where do you get your fabrics?
Till next time.......

Tuesday, September 13, 2016


I have talked about "The" Red and White Quilt Show before. However, I had yet to buy the book that accompanied the show. Why? Well, because the publisher's price was $60.00. Don't get me wrong, I have spent that much (and sometimes more) on books before, but I have to think about it. When this book was offered for $2 4.95 by Edward R. Hamilton Bookseller Co., a copy was finally mine. Sadly, I can't figure out how to link this with my Kindle, but you can find it easily. One thing to note is that I don't order off the net, as I get a "not secure" notice. So, I get a paper catalog and order the old fashioned way by mail and check.

Oh to have been there in person! But the book is wonderful.
My interests are far ranging when it comes to books. I also ordered the following book. It was published at $50.00 and it was offered for $4.95.

 I also got a really interesting book about English history.

It contains reproduced stereoscopic cards of village scenes, as well as a newly designed viewer that folds flat. That is a very brief description.
Hamilton offered this $60.00 book for $6.95. But the really interesting thing about this book is that one of the authors is Brian May, who is a founding member of the rock band Queen - he is a guitar player and vocalist. He made his guitar , by the way. Not only that, but he has a PHD in astrophysics. I am not making this stuff up, although it probably sounds like it! He also has an asteroid named after him, as well as a species of damselfly, due to his work to preserve animal species. He got interested in stereoscopes in the 1970's. He designed the one included with the book.
All this goes to show you that you can't judge a book by its cover. Pun intended.
Till next time.........

Edit:  Forgot to mention that the shipping and handling charge when you order by mail is $3.50  no matter how many books you order. I think it is slightly higher for net orders.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

My Work Station

This is a lap station designed to be used with laptop computers. I use it for hand piecing. I can put a Kindle in the slot at the back. Sometimes I download a movie or television show during the night (we pay for high speed internet, but we are at the very edge of the service zone and we get a slow service) and I can watch it while I sew the next day. Plus it is handy for looking something up on the net or checking my email. There are two padded arm rests at the front edges that I stick my needle in while clipping threads. I took the photo with everything sitting on the table, but I actually sit it on my lap while sitting on my loveseat with my legs up on a footstool. As you can see, my pieces are kept in ziplock bags to avoid losing them. The block shown on the right is just a sample block. The hardest part of making a miniature quilt for me is the hand quilting. The sample is for trying different quilting ideas. More about this project on another day.
Other things - Karen asked if I liked the book Indigo Quilts. Yes, I like it very much. There are 30 featured antique quilts, 5 of which have patterns and instructions. The applique patterns are full size, which is a nice plus. There is also a history of the indigo dye itself.  So, for me, it is a perfect book. As amazing as the red and white quilt show in New York was, I have to say that my heart has always belonged to indigo and white quilts.
Till next time......

Thursday, August 11, 2016

A Trip to Paducah

First stop-Hancock's of Paducah.
One small section of fabrics.
One small section of patterns.
What came home with me. Notice the white base in the upper right? It is a little collapsible LED light. Our electricity was off for awhile, so I used the little light. It collapses to a flat rectangle and fits in the box shown. Think it will be great for the camper.
Same stuff, light on the other side.
The Yo-Yo Ladies quilting at the National Quilt Museum.
Another view.
A poorly lit photo of Judy  Schwender.
She is the curator of collections and registrar at the museum.
I bought this book and the tiny 25 year anniversary pin at the museum quilt store.

A peak inside.
And last, but not least, a purchase from Hancock's. The new issue of Quiltmania. It has a new feature with Gerald Roy.
In this issue he writes about crib and doll quilts. It is a wonderful article.
I made a couple of other stops at favorite places, but they weren't quilt related.
Before I sign off, thanks to those of you who stopped by a left comments. You are the reason why people love quilters! 
Till next time......

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Museum News

Remember this little guy?
Just got an email from Judy Schwender at the National Quilt Museum and my quilt was selected with 14 others to travel to the Tokyo Quilt & Stitch Show in September and the Osaka Quilt & Stitch Show in December. I am very honored.  
Till next time.....

Thursday, July 21, 2016

What I'm Up To...

Hello to everyone!
I am doing a test post.  Trying to see if it's possible to do a post with a tiny Kindle.  I love my Kindles - yes there is more than one around here. This one has a camera and I wanted to see if it is good enough. Let me know how it shows up.
I have been sick for quite some time. Cataract surgery has been scheduled for me several times and cancelled due to other health problems. So, since my eyesight has taken such a hit, I have switched to crocheting and knitting.  Hopefully a crocheted lap size afghan will materialize, and am doing some gift packs of dishcloths. 
I would like to say hi to Jill and my other friends out there. Vern and I probably won't be able to make any meetings this year. He is working out of state right now and is coming and going with a crazy schedule. 
Well, I hope this works o.k.  I absolutely hate the computer in my studio. It is very difficult to get anything done on it and discourages me from blogging. Plus I haven't even felt like being in there.  Hopefully better days are ahead.
Till next time....


Thursday, June 23, 2016

Checking in with you....

Here is a miniature that I actually finished at the end of 2015.  It was inspired by a quilt pattern in the book Family Ties Old Quilt Patterns from New Cloth by Nancilu Butler Burdick.  "Patterns and interpretations of the work of early quiltmaker Talula Gilbert Bottoms" is written on the bottom of the cover.  The other book is Legacy The Story of Talula Gilbert Bottoms and Her Quilts also written by Nancilu Butler Burdick.  Legacy was the first one, copyright 1988 and the other was copyright 1991. 
Talula Bottoms was a remarkable woman making between 200 and 300 quilts under circumstances and conditions that we today have trouble imagining.  Talula was born in 1862 in the south, so you can fill in the rest.  Her granddaughter, Nancilu Burdick wrote these books and her perseverance and research into her grandmother's quilts is to be admired.  I love both of these books.
Above is the quilt and pattern in Family Ties that inspired my miniature.  What I loved about Talula's quilt is the use of muted 1930's fabrics.  Sometimes the fabrics from that era can be overwhelming, but Talula chose fabrics that imparted a soft and calm look to the finished quilt.
I used 1930's fabrics as well, and the background of the blocks is actually a print, although in the photo it reads as a solid.  The blocks are 2.5" finished, the sashing is .25" wide and the overall size of the quilt is 13.75" x 16.25".  With not one exception, everyone of my friends that saw a block said:
"Aren't these kind of big for you?"
Well, maybe so, but it was the best I could do.  I needleturn appliqued the wings and bodies and then buttonhole stitched the wings by hand. Using a fusing technique would make smaller blocks possible, but the look would not be the same, in my opinion.   The antennae are hand embroidered.  My goal, as always, is to have it look like a full sized quilt in photos. Oh yes, I used vintage ric rac for an edge finish which is an idea I have been kicking around for a long time. I love working with 1930's prints and solids.  They are so much fun to put together.
Now for a big shout out to Wendy Caton Reed who is featured on a Barbara Brackman blog hehttp://civilwarquilts.blogspot.com/re. 
Way to go, Wendy!  Read Wendy's blog at http://theconstantquilter.blogspot.com/ 
Well, till next time..........

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Grover and me,

Remember when I showed you a 4" bow tie block?  Well, I thought I did, but can't find it now.  It was part of this project.  Sue Reich asked me if I would make a 24" square quilt featuring Grover Cleveland for her Presidents Book. Grover and I  are shown together at the Civic Center in Paducah during the past quilt show. Here is a pic of the book.
Here is Grover on page 96:
Here are the rest of the quilts displayed at the Civic Center:

Sue had supplied us all with the photos of the presidents and gave us guidelines for size, etc.  She also requested that we use either period fabrics for our pres., or appropriate reproduction fabrics. I used all antique fabrics and hand pieced and hand quilted it.  I was honored to have participated in this project.
Enough about quilts! Here is a current pic of Gizmo:
He is on top of "his" cupboard on the very first quilt I ever made.  It might be the most awful quilt in existence.  I am thinking it is a perfect match for the Giz.
On a personal note, why haven't I been blogging?  Well, there is a couple of reasons.  I haven't been well and haven't spent any time in my sewing studio.  That is where my computer is kept.  So, if I'm not in the studio, I'm not blogging.  Hope to remedy that. 
Till next time....

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

So, where have I been?????

Well, I've been here.  Just haven't been blogging.  We will discuss the reasons why some other time. But, anyhow, here I am now.
I made the above miniature quilt for The National Quilt Museum's auction next month.  The quilt is 7" square, the geese units are 1/2" x 3/4" and it is made with fabrics from the last quarter of the 19th century.  It is a color scheme that was popular with Mennonite quilt makers at that time.  It is one of those color combos that you will either love or hate.  I love it.  It is really nice for miniatures, as there are no prints to muddy things up - just solids. It is made with fabrics from the quilt top I purchased at the AQSG Seminar.

It had some bad stains on it, although they are not shown in the picture.
Well, I hope to deliver my miniature to the museum tomorrow and say hi to the Yo-Yo Ladies. It is always fun to visit the museum.
Take care out there in quiltland.
Till next time...

Tuesday, January 19, 2016


Hello my quilty friends!
Yes, here we are half way through the first month of 2016.  I am just happy to be here.
Well, you are guessing that this is my first finish of the year.  Nope, actually finished it in December, but am just now posting it.  (Note: the background fabric is actually white, as shown below.)
Remember this?:
I have finished two quilts from this pile.  The little flower basket has been hanging around for years. It was time to finish it or pitch it.  So, I finished it.  Who can explain the design process or creativity for that matter?  For years I didn't know what to do with it and then in Dec., I sat down and in 15 minutes decided what to do.  Let me say that this quilt is the exception to the Portfolio Series.  Some background here.  I have been going through my notebooks and trying to get everything documented and tided up once and for all.  This series started in 2007 and there were rules.  All quilts would be about the same size, all would be hand pieced and quilted and appliqued - no paper piecing, fusing of appliques, etc.  All quilts would be made of antique fabrics.  The goal was to have a history of quilt making in America in miniature.  The flower basket center was prior to all this and was from my experimental phase. The hexies are EPP and the fans were partially foundation paper pieced.  So, as they say, every rule has its exception and this quilt is it.  The basket and fans are hand appliqued down, the squares were hand pieced and it is hand quilted.  It is 12" square with a 1/8" finished binding.  I am particularly proud of the fact that I managed to incorporate a feedsack into this quilt.  It is the lavender polka dot fabric in the plain borders. It is extremely difficult to find a feedsack with a small enough design for a miniature quilt.  Oh, yes, in yet another exception, some of the fabrics in the basket and fan are reproduction fabrics, although most are authentic 1930's fabrics.  There was a time when I considered mixing the new and old.  I ditched that idea.  
One more thing - New Year's Resolutions - I have one.  It is to spend more time reading my friends blogs and catching up on what they are doing.  
Till next time.....