IRR Again

Claire's IRR
Claire’s IRR

Next on the IRR list was Claire’s piece. Claire was in my original group so I wanted to make sure I worked on all of those quilts. I received her piece at the January BAMQG meeting.

Claire’s IRR was a challenge. The colors are perfect for Claire, but they are not my colors. Also, many of the fabrics had been used up or smaller pieces were left. This is why the project is called a challenge! I did not let these things discourage me.

I put the piece up on my design wall and tried to see the focal point or the place where Claire started. I couldn’t really tell, so I looked at who had worked on the piece and still couldn’t tell what might have been Claire’s start.

Trying out the Grandmother's Fan idea
Trying out the Grandmother’s Fan idea

I put the focal point aside and looked at the piece. I saw some good curved lines and thought something like the Grandmother’s Fan block might work. I cut some blades and put them up on the design wall.

I really did try to keep, mostly, to the 20 minute rule. I find that rule to be hard as the pieces get larger. Of course, cutting is still a challenge. Also, the curves on Claire’s were not an easy design element. And, right on cue, life got in the way and the piece sat on my design wall for a week or more.

Claire's IRR - continuing the curves
Claire’s IRR – continuing the curves

As I walked in and out of my workroom I decided I did like the curves. At one point, I adjusted the fans so the existing curves would be continued — or give the illusion of being continued.

In the photo, I tried to point out to you, in a very obnoxious color, what I thought of as ‘continuing the curve’. No, the blades aren’t all the same size, but the curve seems to be the most important in terms of design. I hope the curves I added work with the existing curves to create a focal point.

The bad part is that I didn’t square off the fans. I know I should have, but I just didn’t feel like it. I know I can offer to do it later, if push comes to shove. I am hoping that someone else will square them off down the road.

Claire's IRR with my addition
Claire’s IRR with my addition

I am happy with what I did. I gave the piece to Michelle on Thursday and will look forward to seeing what she does.

Now I am on to Ruth‘s piece.

Mine All Mine!

Jaye's Sew Together Bag - closed
Jaye’s Sew Together Bag – closed

Finally! I made a Sew Together Bag for myself. I haven’t filled it up with my English Paper Piecing materials as of this writing, but I will have done by the time you read this.

I am not sure why I chose the paint can fabric for the outside. It was waiting to be ironed and it kept beckoning me. I couldn’t resist and it was perfect. It feels like a good outside for a working bag. I also think I won’t wonder why I chose it.

I didn’t mean to match the top, but I did a pretty good unintentional job, don’t you think?

Jaye's Sew Together Bag -some fabric choices
Jaye’s Sew Together Bag -some fabric choices

I chose the inside fabrics very carefully. I wanted fabrics that I loved. A lot of these are new or new-ish fabrics, but have the feel of old favorites. All the choices has to be light for the inside so I can see the tools that fall to the very bottom. I did choose one dark violet/magenta Karen Lewis fabric. It isn’t light, but I think it will be fine.

As I mentioned the other day, I made this one at the same time I made TFQ’s. After I cut all the pieces I sewed the steps for one and then the next until the end when I had to get TFQ’s done because she was coming to visit and I needed to gift it. I finished mine in a few quiet half hours over the weekend after the fun and games with TFQ.

My Sew Together Bag - open
My Sew Together Bag – open

I added a couple of pinks for the inside of the pockets, but they are hard to see unless you have the bag with you.

Jaye's Sew Together Bag - closed, side view
Jaye’s Sew Together Bag – closed, side view

I tried one thing on mine to try and cover up the stitching of the side panels to the lining. (If you look at the photo above, the area I am talking about is a vertical line of binding on the ends just in from the curvy handle). At the end of the process, when I was putting on the binding strips, I sewed the binding to the bottom first then wrapped it around to the top. I still had to deal with the thickness, but I was able to see where I had stitched and could make an attempt to cover it.

Sew Together Bag with zipper pull
Sew Together Bag with zipper pull

I received a zipper pull for Christmas and decided to put it on the bag. Why not? I had it. It would make the long zipper easier to pull and it would look cool. Also, I wouldn’t have a random zipper pull floating around the house.

It fits perfectly and looks cool (at least to me!). One problem is that the zipper pull is one sided. When I open the long zipper to access my EPP materials, the zipper pull ends up on the other side of the bag upside down. I know this is silly. It would be better to get a two-sided zipper pull. Since I already had this, I am going to continue to use it but I would advise you to get a two sided zipper pull if you are out buying one.

I have an idea of making one using beads for the next STB, but we will see.

Upside down zipper pull
Upside down zipper pull

I filled the bag on Friday. I took my regular handwork bag and put some items from that bag into my new Sew Together Bag. I took all of the stuff I might need for English Paper Piecing. I may have mentioned that I intended all along to use this for my English paper piecing project. Two problems I had in the filling: would I get a second pair of Gingher snips to put in my regular handwork bag? I also forgot thread. I meant to go upstairs and get another spool and I just forgot, or got distracted. That forced me to go to quilt shops over the weekend. 😉

Sew Together Bag in my lap
Sew Together Bag in my lap

In using the bag in the car, I found the best part to be the ‘tray’ that the bag formed in my lap. With my old handwork bag, it didn’t open as far as this one so my lap was my tray. Also, everything was sorted into pockets. As I got used to where my tools and supplies were located, I found I could work relatively quickly. I finished on two EPP stars in the car, placing the bag with the pincushion towards me. I found it to be very useful and convenient.

Some Observations

  • I think the strips for the long zipper would lay better if they were on the bias.
  • The bag needs some feature to which Wonder Clips can be clipped.
  • I tried a few different things and cannot get the top stitching to look good where there are many, many layers.
  • WonderClips are a godsend for making this project. I used about 12. They are not listed on the supply list, but I think they are essential for this bag.
  • Make the pincushion (mine is a little too large on this one) and the exterior at the beginning of the bag making process. It is such a hassle to stop and do the fiddly bits when you are so close to finishing.
  • Use a two sided zipper pull

I have an idea for one more that I want to make, but it isn’t a requirement and I think I will let the feeling lie for awhile.

After making this bag 4 times, I am tempted to try the Bionic Bag just to see the differences. I am trying to restrain myself. I need another bag pattern like I need a hole in my head.

Quilt Labels

A week or so ago, I wrote my first Various & Sundry post for 2016. In a comment, BAMQG pal, Annemarie, asked about quilt labels. It occurred to me that I had been meaning to write about quilt labels for a long time and I hadn’t yet done it.

First, I think quilt labels are VERY important. They document the work of women who are not being paid to make things. While you may think that women and their work are valued, I think that we have a long way to go to have handwork (even by machine) valued as much as something such as, for example, a technology infrastructure or a new and successful app.

Second, I think quilt labels are important because they can tell the story of your quilt, if you want. Even if the story includes only:

  • maker
  • date
  • recipient

It is a small story, but a story nonetheless. It can be the starting link of a chain.

Label for Small Items
Label for Small Items

Third, for bags and small projects, I have a small label I print out in batches of about 20 on a page. It is not personalized to any particular project, but it lets people know who made the item. I even put these on ATCs. While simple and not unique, they can link a small item to my larger quilts. These would be perfect to make on Spoonflower and I might just do that.

Fourth, ALL quilts are important even the baby quilt you whipped up overnight for a baby who came early. The child will look at the label, wonder at and ask about it when s/he is old enough.

I did a little meditation on quilt backs a few years ago. Since I put my labels on the back, is relevant for this post. You may want to take a look.

What to Include

When I make a quilt label, I start with a Word document and save it to the folder on my computer (Google Drive or similar would work as well) that has all of the notes and images for the project. I include the following:

  • a picture of myself or my avatar
  • the name of the quilt
  • the size of the quilt (this is helpful when entering shows as I don’t have to measure the quilt every time)
  • details about materials and construction, such as if I have embellished the quilt or used special materials. I always put the content of the fabric and thread. Most of my quilts say 100% fabric and thread, but this is the place to put other content information, if relevant
  • my name, address and phone number
  • the name and address of my blog
  • Name and company of the quilter who quilted the quilt for me, starting with “Quilted by” or “Longarm quilted by”. Sometimes my name is in that spot. I feel it is important to differentiate the piecing from the quilting.
  • If this is a gift, I also include “Collection of Jane Doe”
  • If many people worked on the quilt, I include their names. This may help historians build connections between me and my guild mates in the future.
  • Sometimes I will include the pattern name.
  • If I got the pattern from a publication, I will include that and note changes that I made.
  • If the quilt was made for a show or exhibition or in response to a challenge, I put it on the label. Again, it helps make connections.
  • The story, process and inspiration for the the quilt. This is often the same, or similar, information I use on the quilt’s webpage. This information may include why I gave the quilt to this particular person. If I used special fabric or a particular line of fabric, I may include the information in this section. I also include why I made the quilt. It may have been specifically for a person. I may have started it in a class or wanted to try a technique or process
  • washing instructions, especially if the quilt will be a gift

Yes, the above is a LOT of information. My labels are frequently very large – taking up most of an 8.5″ x 11″ sheet. This is the information I would want to know if I came across a quilt in an antique store.

I often write up the label as I go along, so I only have to do some editing when I am ready for it.

How to Make a Quilt Label

There are as many ways to make a quilt label as there are to make a quilt. You can:

  • use my process and print on fabric
  • write with a permanent pen on a plain piece of fabric and sew on to your quilt
  • write directly on the quilt (watch for bleeding!!!!)
  • hand or machine embroider
  • applique’
  • use stitch lettering on your machine to write out label information directly on to the quilt.
  • Get sheets of labels already printed on fabric and fill them in with a permanent marker
  • Use Transfer Artist Paper
  • Write up your label in Word (or another word processing program), then trace on to fabric with a permanent pen
  • Create on Spoonflower
  • Buy personal, pre-cut woven labels (like the ones in your clothes) with your name, blog name, a short message, etc
  • Insert a triangle of fabric into the binding with your information written on it
  • embroider (watch for floss that bleeds)

I love the front of a quilt. Sadly, I am happy for the the fairies and magical animals to finish the rest for me. By the time I get to making the back, I want the quilt to be done. My method for making labels is relatively quick, in the grand scheme. Some tips:

  • print a test page on a piece of paper to check for color and clarity.
  • Make sure you ink cartridges are at your desired level

Sewing and More Information

My mom’s car was broken into and my niece’s quilt, which was coming to me to be bound was stolen. It had been made at a shower for her mom and many people had drawn, colored and written messages for my yet-to-be-born niece. The quilt was a wonderful scrapbook of heartfelt love and was never recovered. It is one of the saddest events in my quilty world.

I sew my quilt labels into the back of the quilt before the quilt is quilted. I do not applique’ labels onto the back after the piece is quilted. Yes, that means piecing the back. Yes, the quilting can make the words look weird, but I want people to know the maker and owner of the quilt. If the quilt is stolen, then the thief will have to destroy the quilt to remove the label. I think this is unlikely, but in a sick kind of way, I would rather have that then someone passing my work off as their own. If they don’t care, then perhaps every time they see the label, they will feel  a little bit ashamed.

Confession Time

I have one quilt that is unlabeled and there are no photos of it. It isn’t a horrible quilt or anything and I do keep meaning to do it. I just don’t seem to get around to it. If I die before I do it, nobody will know anything about it, which is sad.

I really dislike making labels and quilt backs. I do it, because I truly, deep in my heart, believe it is important to document my work. If you don’t feel that labels are important, then you don’t have to make them. The above is not a call to arms, but information on how and why *I* label *my* quilts.


This is a small sample of the myriad of information available. For more resources type “quilt labels” into Google and look at the massive amount of resources and images that are retrieved. Everyone has a different process. Find what works for you.


Gift Post #9: Periwinkle Sew Together Bag

I know you have to be wondering if the gift madness ever ends. One thing is that I know LOTS of fantastic people with birthdays in January. I don’t give all of them gifts, but the ones for whom I do make gifts mean the ‘holiday’ season seems to stretch well into January. It is easier just to continue the numbering of the gift posts as the making often starts in December or before.

For this particular bag, the making started last week. The planning, hunting and gathering started well before, but the actual making had to wait until I had finished some other projects.

TFQ Sew Together Bag - closed
TFQ Sew Together Bag – closed

I wanted to make 2 more Sew Together Bags, including one for me, so I decided I would make both at one time. After the cutting, which still seems to take me forever, but was easier doing two at a time, I got started. I was surprised to find that I plowed through the same amount of work on two STBs in the same amount of time as I had on the second STB. Don’t get me wrong! I referred frequently to the Quilt Barn Sew-a-Long posts as the process is complicated and not firmly ensconced in my head. Seriously! Those posts are life savers.

I wanted this Sew Together Bag to match the Multi-tasker Tote I made. One birthday – a set of gifts. As I mentioned, I didn’t have any more of the black batik. I decided to use the Multi-tasker Tote lining fabric as the outside. I used the dark for the Multi-tasker Tote, because it doesn’t show the dirt as much, but with the Sew Together Bag, it probably would just stay at home with handwork materials in it and not be on the floor of the bus, etc.

Pocket Panel Showing Fabrics
Pocket Panel Showing Fabrics

In addition to the lining fabric, I chose the fabrics carefully. I wanted them to be really pretty and interesting. I also wanted each section to be different, so that the differences would provide visual cues when searching for supplies or tools. I am particularly pleased with the fabrics I chose for this STB.

The violet fabric on the left has a bit of an Asian feel, which is not normally my style. I was particularly attracted to that fabric when thinking of TFQ. I was pleased that she like it as well.

I still had trouble with the thickness of some of the steps. I tried not sewing all the way to end of the side panels so I could flatten them out. The idea was good, but the flattening didn’t work out. I also thought of trimming the batting away from the edge of the exterior. By the time I got to that point, it was impossible to trim the batting. Foiled on both attempts! TFQ suggested using ShapeFlex instead of batting next time (will their be a next time???). I thought it might not provide a sturdy/thick enough exterior, but I might try it.

TFQ Sew Together Bag - open
TFQ Sew Together Bag – open

I am pleased with this version, especially with the colors of the pocket panel. I hope it is useful.

Creative Prompt #347: Lilac




Hulda Klager Lilac Gardens

The Library Information Literacy Advisory Committee (LILAC), established by the Council of Chief Librarians and the University Librarian in 2004, grows out of an ongoing interest and responsibility in promoting information literacy across CUNY.

National Lilac Rabbit Club of America promoting Lilac Rabbits. [Lilac rabbits???]

The Lilac Fairy Book

International Lilac Society

Lilac Clothing

Lilac Patisserie – A dedicated gluten free bakery and café on State Street in Santa Barbara, CA.

Lilac City Grille – Rochester, NH

Pine Mountain Clubs Annual Lilac Festival

Definition: “Syringa vulgaris (lilac or common lilac) is a species of flowering plant in the olive family Oleaceae, native to the Balkan Peninsula, where it grows on rocky hills.[1][2][3] This species is widely cultivated as an ornamental and has been naturalized in other parts of Europe (UK, France, Germany, Italy, etc.) as well as much of North America. It is not regarded as an aggressive species, found in the wild in widely scattered sites, usually in the vicinity of past or present human habitations.[4][5][6]

Syringa vulgaris is a large deciduous shrub or multi-stemmed small tree, growing to 6–7 m (20–23 ft) high, producing secondary shoots (“suckers”) from the base or roots, with stem diameters of up to 20 cm (8 in), which in the course of decades may produce a small clonal thicket.[7] The bark is grey to grey-brown, smooth on young stems, longitudinally furrowed and flaking on older stems. The leaves are simple, 4–12 cm (2–5 in) and 3–8 cm broad, light green to glaucous, oval to cordate, with pinnate leaf venation, a mucronate apex and an entire margin. They are arranged in opposite pairs or occasionally in whorls of three. The flowers have a tubular base to the corolla 6–10 mm long with an open four-lobed apex 5–8 mm across, usually lilac to mauve, occasionally white. They are arranged in dense, terminal panicles 8–18 cm (3–7 in) long. The fruit is a dry, smooth brown capsule, 1–2 cm long, splitting in two to release the two winged seeds.[1][8” (Wikipedia)

Lilac Bijoux believes in carefully curating their fashion to make sure they bring you the best casual-chic flair your can find.

The Mackinac Island Lilac Festival is a 10-day celebration, June 5 through 14.

“The story of lilac, according to Greek mythology, begins with a beautiful nymph named Syringa (lilac’s botanical name). Captivated by her beauty, Pan, the god of the forests and fields, chased Syringa through the forest. Frightened by Pan’s affections, Syringa escaped him by turning herself into an aromatic bush – the flower we now refer to as lilac.

The 8th wedding anniversary flower and the state flower of New Hampshire (symbolizing the hardy character of the Granite State’s citizens), lilacs are frequently considered a harbinger of spring, with the time of their bloom signaling whether spring will be early or late. In the language of flowers, purple lilacs symbolize the first emotions of love, while white lilacs represent youthful innocence.” (Teleflora)

Post the direct URL (link) where your drawing, doodle, artwork is posted (e.g. your blog, Flickr) in the comments area of this post. I would really like to keep all the artwork together and provide a way for others to see your work and get familiar with your blog or website.

The Creative Prompt Project, also, has a Flickr group, which you can join to  post your responses. I created this spot so those of you without blogs and websites would have a place to post your responses.

We are also talking about this on Twitter and Instagram. Use the hashtag #CPP

Gift Post #8: Multi-tasker Tote

TFQ Multi-tasker Tote
TFQ Multi-tasker Tote

I put this Multi-tasker Tote on my list in 2013 or even 2012, maybe. It feels like it has been on that list forever. Fortunately, it doesn’t matter, because the pattern worked the same in 2015 as it did when I made it last time.**

I couldn’t carry my machine and prepping projects seemed like a good idea. I decided to cut out the bag when I went to Reno. Cutting out bags is very time consuming for me. I found it hard. I felt sad and depressed after I finished the cutting, though having Julie, Kathleen and Mrs. K there made it better.

The following weekend, Thanksgiving weekend, for #BFSI, I started sewing this bag together. The Multi-tasker Tote pattern is such a great pattern and it is a joy to make (the sewing part, not the prep part). I felt so much better after I started it. You should click on my link, buy it AND make it!

I worked on it late at night and within a short amount of time, the bag started to look like something. It was such a thrill.

Large inside pocket
Large inside pocket

I did a couple of things differently. First I made a the inside pocket really large. I wanted the pocket to accommodate a journal to keep it safe and away from a water bottle or other wet things.

I wanted contrast so I made the pocket out of the outside black batik. I really like the black batik, though I might have thought differently if I had made the matching Sew Together Bag first (see post about that soon). I didn’t have enough of the black to make the outside of the Sew Together bag, which was a disappointment. I have a thing about making sets of matching items.

AMH MTT key ring loop
AMH MTT key ring loop

I also made the key ring flatter. I wasn’t sure why beyond not wanting to sew through so many layers of fabric and interfacing. It turns out that TFQ can clip some of her zipper bags (she is making them now and selling them at select craft fairs and by order), using a carabiner or a key ring clip or something to this bag. I have a sprongy chain so I can clip my keys to my handbag and I may try and make something like that with a piece of elastic in a later bag. We’ll see.

I used quite a bit of Shapeflex to give the bag some structure. You know I don’t like floopy bags. It looked stiff, though, which wasn’t ideal.

I gave TFQ the bag for her birthday on Monday and she liked it, or I thought she liked it. I’ll look forward to seeing how it works for her when it softens up a bit with use.




**Nota bene: I don’t actually know if the link to the bag is the last time I made a AMH MTT. It seems like a long time ago and I thought I had made one more recently.

Pink Carpenter’s Wheel

Pink Carpenter's Wheel (#5)
Pink Carpenter’s Wheel (#5)

I was finally able to finish this pink (the center is pink so I think of it as the Pink Carpenter’s Wheel) Carpenter’s Wheel block. While I was working on the Sew Together Bags, I didn’t have a quarter inch foot on the machine, so I did barely any quilt work piecing. Very sad as that means very little gets done.

But the Sew Together Bags are done for the moment and I got quite a lot done over the weekend.

This one has more HSTs. I put some in the center, outside the Sawtooth Star, to try and get the look of a ring going. Not sure if I succeeded, thought I do like the look and the opportunity for additional color more HSTs provides.

I am still interested in the low volume background and am adding more of my own fabrics to the mini-charm packs I bought in Corvallis.

I cut and laid out another Carpenter’s Wheel block. I didn’t do it because I wanted an even number. I did it because I had another idea for a variation.

More FOTY 2016

FOTY 2016 - mid January
FOTY 2016 – mid January

Mom came over and spent the night a few weeks ago before she drove the Young Man back to school. We had some time to talk and happened to be doing it in my workroom so I cut and pressed fabric while we chatted.

I’ll do a bit more cutting and pressing and plan to start arranging this quilt towards the beginning of February.

Quilt Shop: A Verb for Keeping Warm

TFQ came to town for a visit and heard about AVFKW. She wanted to visit. She has been knitting a lot more than quiltmaking  :( lately and loves new yarn. I didn’t mind at all. Who doesn’t love yarn? I don’t really knit anymore and I really enjoyed looking around the shop.

A Verb for Keeping Warm (photo from April)
A Verb for Keeping Warm (photo from April)

A Verb for Keeping Warm is a yarn and fabric shop in the East Bay. I wouldn’t say it is exactly a quilt shop, but it is worth a trip to take a look at their fabric. There are interesting fabric choices available. < the photo was taken on an April day; I forgot to take one  and it was raining. >

Yarn Wall - A Verb for Keeping Warm
Yarn Wall – A Verb for Keeping Warm

This is my second trip and I was pleased to see that the shop had been rearranged. It was much more open this time and was a very appealing space. The colors of the yarn and fabric were a nice foreground to the natural wood shelves and furniture, brown paper packaging and soft lighting.

The place was packed! There was a knitting class or group going on at the table in the back. There were people looking at yarn, fabric and everything else and one patient husband/boyfriend waiting for his sweetheart.

If I had to decide, I would say that AVFKW is mostly a yarn shop. Still, they have a lot of other stuff. One GIANT ball of roving was particularly interesting – and very soft. There were a number of different items on offer:

Fabric Wall
Fabric Wall

The items for sale seem to be carefully curated. The goal is, clearly, to supply makers of yarn items and fabric items. There are scissors and a variety of measuring tapes. There were kits for socks and materials required for dyeing. I saw stitch markers and knitting needles. Swiffs, spinning wheels and  a variety of clubs are also available.

There was a natural dyeing section, which had dye supplies, things to dye and kits for dyeing a small project. TFQ told me later that the owner wrote a book on this subject later.

We saw a scarf that we both liked. It is called the Nightfall Cowl. We talked to one of the saleswomen about it and she said that the pattern can be found on the shop blog.

TFQ found a beautiful yarn that was a blend of wool and silk. It was so nice to touch! She could not find colors she liked, so she did not buy any despite wanting to very badly.

The staff was also quite cheerful and helpful. If you want interesting, but not tons of fabric or yarn, then this is a good place to visit.

Address: 6328 San Pablo Ave, Oakland, CA 94608

College Pillowcase Tally #3

We are well into the school year and, as you know, the YM is back at school after the Christmas break. He is finishing up week 1 of the semester. He talked about taking an extra pillow back to school with him. That was the only thing he felt he was missing.

September– Done

  • Theme: soft
  • Fabric: Minkee and flannel
  • Theme: Back to School
  • Fabric: Timeless Treasures Fun #2306

September College Pillowcase

September College Pillowcase

Back-to-School Pillowcase

Back-to-School Pillowcase

As I said in my previous post, I was tempted by a “School Daze” theme, but I didn’t want to send him something that will embarrass him. I also want him to use the pillowcases. I decided to make him a really soft pillowcase, which I did. Then In Eureka, I saw the Timeless Treasures fabric. I texted him a picture and he approved so I bought some fabric and made the pillowcase when I got home from dropping him off. It went into his first care package.

October – Done

  • Theme: Halloween
  • Fabric: skeleton fabric by Timeless Treasures for the body. The cuff is an old P&B Fabric.

Halloween Pillowcase for YM

Halloween Pillowcase for YM

This is a gimme. Very easy fabric to choose and I am pretty sure the YM will like it.

I also made 3 matching Hallowe’en pillowcases for the YM and his roommates.

November – Done

  • Theme: Thanksgiving
  • Fabric: Timeless Treasures Golden Harvest

Thanksgiving Pillowcase

Thanksgiving Pillowcase

I was disappointed I couldn’t find a cornucopia fabric, but this fabric looks very Thanksgiving-y.


  • Theme: Christmas
  • Fabric: not purchased

YM's Christmas Pillowcase

YM’s Christmas Pillowcase

January – Done – UPDATE!

I didn’t send this off to him, though I still have time if I want to send him a January care package.

  •  Theme: Pokemon
  • Fabric: Robert Kaufman licensed from Nintendo

Pokemon Pillowcase #2

Pokemon Pillowcase #2

I had the fabric on my ‘to be ironed’ pile and the YM saw it. I didn’t say that it was for a pillowcase for him and asked him if he would want a pillowcase out of it. He, very tactfully, said I should make one for someone else, so I made one with red fabric for the body and a cuff from the Pokemon fabric. I have another pillowcase with a Pokemon body and think I will give it to his cousin, who is 11.

February – DONE – UPDATE!

  • Theme: Valentine’s Day
  • Fabric: Moda
Valentine's College Pillowcase
Valentine’s College Pillowcase

I really wanted to send him a Valentine’s themed package, so I made a Valentine’s pillowcase and will send it off towards the end of the month. I think the grey (Julie’s suggestion) makes it not too sweet. The color is heading towards pinky red..The original theme below will have to carry over to another month or end up as a gift for one of the nephews.

  • Theme: Video games
  • Fabric: Angry Birds


  • Theme: St. Patrick’s Day?
  • Fabric: ?


  • Theme: Easter?
  • Fabric: ?


The YM will be home in May (the dorms close on 4/29), so no pillowcase for May.

Mighty Lucky Inspiration

This week turned into an unexpectedly busy week. Nothing bad, just a number of time sucking curve balls. As a result, I still haven’t put bias strips to background for the Mighty Lucky Quilting Club challenge. If I had won the Powerball, then all that busyness could have gone away and I could have immersed myself in sewing. HA!

I can now, at least, make the bias strips since I was able to find the one of the bias tape makers I wanted to play with at Beverly’s. Yes, I did order them from Amazon and I received the 1″, but the 1/4″ tape maker was on back order. I made trips to a couple of quilt stores, knowing I could cancel the online orders, but both Always Quilting and Scruffy Quilts were out of bias tape makers. I guess the MLQC is popular OR making bias tape is popular.

I was out for a walk and stopped in at Beverly’s even though i didn’t have a coupon. They had all the sizes in the Clover brand! Since I had some simple ideas in mind, I bought the 1/4″ tape maker and cancelled the Amazon order.

Aside from the sketches that I made and showed you the other day, I found two pictures that also make me want to make them using bias tape.

Bias tape water bird
Bias tape water bird

I saw the first picture when I was, again, out for a walk (I walk a lot). It is a cool line drawing I saw a on the back of a car. I think I might have mentioned that I love water birds once or twice and this sticker reminded me of an egret. The body is a little fat, but I can adjust that – or not – when I get the bias tape ready.

I could also do an outline of myself, though there is not a lot of detail, because I am bundled up and in shadow. I am not inclined to do that, but the outline is clear enough.


Then, yesterday, I was early for a meeting. I didn’t want to announce myself until closer to the meeting time, so I started to organize the photos on my phone. I have too many and I need to off load them, but organizing always calms my nerves. In the course of that exercise, I found another bird statue that would be a great bias tape drawing.

I remember taking the photo from a magazine wanting to remember the swoops and lines of the beautiful piece of art. Sadly, I don’t remember any details about the artist or the magazine. I did not make this statue!

One bird is one thing, but I am not sure I want to make both. If these challenge pieces are just challenges piece, then I can make as many as I want. If they will be a quilt, which is what I was thinking when I was sketching the confetti lines, then I might need to think about how many I make.

I suppose making ONE is the first step. 😉

Creative Prompt #346: Peace

Post the direct URL (link) where your drawing, doodle, artwork is posted (e.g. your blog, Flickr) in the comments area of this post. I would really like to keep all the artwork together and provide a way for others to see your work and get familiar with your blog or website.

The Creative Prompt Project, also, has a Flickr group, which you can join to  post your responses. I created this spot so those of you without blogs and websites would have a place to post your responses.

We are also talking about this on Twitter and Instagram. Use the hashtag #CPP

Peace Corps

Freedom from disturbance

peace sign

symbol of peace

Nobel Peace Prize


Kiss of peace

Peace Review Journal -University of San Francisco – Peace Review is a quarterly, multidisciplinary, transnational journal of research and analysis, focusing on the current issues and controversies that underlie the promotion of a more peaceful world.

Peace Action West – Membership organization fostering broad-based civic activism to create a strong voice for peaceful and pragmatic solutions to global problems.

U.S. Institute of Peace

Peace Revolution strives to bring peace to the world by supporting individuals to find inner peace and sharing that peace with their families, friends and …

Peace out

International Peace Bureau – Federation founded in 1892 supports peace and disarmament initiatives and creates international projects.

Peace By Aristophanes Written 421 B.C.E.

Peace Pilgrim – 1908-1981 – Walking over 25000 miles from 1953 to 1981, Peace Pilgrim spread her message of world, group, and individual inner peace 

Peace First – Program uses cooperative games and community service activities to empower elementary school students to be peacemakers.

International Day of Peace

Peace and Justice Studies Association

Seeds of Peace – Non-profit, non-political organization that helps teenagers from regions of conflict learn the skills of making peace



Mighty Lucky Quilting Club

Mighty Lucky Quilting Club
Mighty Lucky Quilting Club

I talked about the Mighty Lucky Quilting Club in a post on Tuesday. I actually wrote those words a few days ago…before I saw the first challenge at BAMQG on Saturday. At that time I wrote “I am interested to see what they do, but don’t want to put another ‘should’ or ‘must’ on my list. I am also not much interested in playing with negative space or more on improvisation, which is to say that it may not be for me…”

I like the name they have chosen. There is something about the words Mighty and Lucky and that make me feel powerful and capable. Silly, probably.

Then I saw the results a few people brought for the first challenge. The first challenge has to do with making and using bias. The idea of the ‘club’ isn’t, at least in the first month, just how to make nine patches and sew set in seams. Now I was interested.

MLQC challenge sketches - January
MLQC challenge sketches – January

I signed up as soon as I got home and started imagining designs. I have wanted to learn to use one of those bias tape makers, but never took the time. As I let the challenge settle into my brain, the ideas started to come. While I was waiting to pick up my nephew from swimming, I did some doodles, not in a sketchbook as is suggested, but just in my journal, which is fine for me. My doodles stemmed from my thoughts of confetti streamers. I don’t think any of my sketches look like what is in my mind, but they are interesting regardless.

MLQC challenge sketches - January
MLQC challenge sketches – January

Drawing the ideas out in long rectangles made me think of the top of a quilt. The quilt would have blocks of different sizes put together in an interesting way. I was thinking that I would use turquoise as a background, perhaps different turquoises, and then red on top. I know you have seen it a million times, but I am stuck on that combination for the moment.

I received, immediately, a nicely formatted PDF with the information about the challenge.

Yesterday, I got home and went looking for the bias tape makers. I am sure I bought a set and can’t find them anywhere, so, sadly, I bought more. Sadly, because I know I will find them as soon as the new ones arrive. I did not buy a 2″ bias tape maker. For this challenge, I think I will stick to thinner lines.

I hope this is fun and am not adding to the ‘shoulds’ in my life.



You can read all about the meeting from the minutes, which are already up on the Bay Area Modern blog. I am just going to show you photos and include my comments about them.

Angela's Goodies
Angela’s Goodies

You saw the One Hour Baskets I made for the Charity Girls. I, mostly, forgot to take photos of the fabulous bags made for the other officers. People did such great jobs on them. Kelly got a Chubby Charmer with a sunshine yellow inside from Amanda. Cheryl received a small handbag (we needed and extra bag for all of her goodies) from Rhonda and Angela got a beautifully structured bag from Gerre, which you can see in the photo (left).

Cheryl's Treasures
Cheryl’s Treasures

The idea is that everyone brings a small gift for each officer and we will fill up the bag with them. This allows people to manage their own budget or make something, if they are inclined. Not everyone participates, but you can see from the stash above that there was no shortage of fabulous gifties.

Getting down to business
Getting down to business

After the meeting, people brought handwork. As I suspected, I was too busy socializing to get my (yes the one I am I am making for me!) Sew Together Bag cut out. :( Never fear, I am working on it. Others did work on their projects. Ruth is a master at getting down to business.

Lynette cozied up, too and others (Gerre, Molly, Bonnie and Joelle) stood around chatting. I was there for a bit talking to Lynette about her Bionic Bag, which is similar to my Sew Together Bag, but more evolved. Lynette showed the quilt in the front at Show & Tell. It is a great boy quilt. The pattern is Fireside Chat by Blue Nickel Studios. It might be worth checking out for one of the nephews.

Gerre's Quilt
Gerre’s Quilt

Gerre brought the most fantastic quilt. I don’t know the pattern (and am too lazy to look it up) except that she said she made it in a workshop with Freddy Moran. Take a class from Freddy if you can. You won’t regret it!

The fabrics remind me of Jane Sassaman, but the most interesting part is the Big Stitch quilting, which she is doing with 12wt Aurifil. I love that she is using different colors for the quilting. Gerre is not afraid of color and I love her work. Check out a detail.

Donation Quilt
Donation Quilt

Angela worked on basting a donation quilt, which is bright and cheery.

All in all it was a great meeting. I did want to cut out my project, but that got done and it was great to chat with people.

2016 Various & Sundry #1


From ResearchBuzz: Stanford University has created a digital archive of Richard Diebenkorn’s sketchbooks. “The Cantor Arts Center recently launched a new website that gives access to the museum’s collection of 29 sketchbooks by Richard Diebenkorn (1922–1993), a renowned artist celebrated as both a central figure in the Bay Area figurative movement and a key figure in the nationwide development of abstract expressionism and color-field painting.”

Patterns, Tutorials and Projects

For those of us in the Northern Hemisphere, winter is upon in varying degrees. Bil Kerr posted a pattern for a log carrier on Craft Nectar. It looks like a very straightforward project if logs and fires are part of your life.

Part 5 and the Reveal, Part 6, of Bonnie Hunter’s Allietare Mystery Quilt have been posted. You need to download the patterns NOW as she will remove them in May or June of 2016. I have seen some very nice versions of this quilt. The ones I like have been in cooler colors. I may actually make this one.

Sewhooked has a Favorite Things BOM. The patterns are available free for the first two days of the month, then cost $2 each or you can buy the set at the end of the year. I downloaded the first block, but it downloaded to Google Drive and not to my account, so I am locked out of it. Be sure, if you download, the patterns, you download them to a place where you can access them again.

Skills and Techniques

Lucky Spool Publishers has started the Mighty Lucky Quilting Club. Many of the BAMQGers have joined for just $5/month. They describe it as “the first monthly subscription club of its kind that focuses on challenging you with design concepts in the quilt making process. It’s like a gym membership for quilters! From playing with improvisation and negative space to finding inspiration and creating your own compositions …and everything in between…you’ll be challenged each month with a new skill to try, with pages of instructions, examples, and inspiration from one of your favorite quilters.” I am interested to see what they do, but don’t want to put another ‘should’ or ‘must’ on my list. I am also not much interested in playing with negative space or more on improvisation, which is to say that it may not be for me, but it could be just right for you. Or you could just look at my quilt class tutorials.

I was watching Season 24 episode 12 of Fons & Porter last night, which was showing the steps to make a project called Cubed. Cubed is a quilt made from 60 degree diamonds with Mary Fons and Jodie Davis hosting. This is a GREAT episode. Mary really does a good job of explaining these diamonds and the tricks to getting perfect patchwork. Additionally, they include a worksheet for adding borders. This is a useful worksheet for every quiltmaker and I suggest that you download it immediately. Watch the episode if you can.

Via Twitter, I saw a post about binding with a decorative stitch, but not the way you are thinking. Check out the Auribuzz blog for the details.

Exhibits and Events

BAMQG pal, Mel Beach, has a quilt selected as one of 12 finalists in the CREA-TV Quilt Challenge. See all the winning/finalists quilts on the Be Creative! Quilt Challenge website.

Supplies and Fabric

Mary, a fellow BAMQGer, shared the WAWAK site with me. She highly recommended it for zippers and other notions. I did look at the site and like their filters for weeding out items. I haven’t ordered from them, but will let you know how it goes when I do.

Articles and Information

Creative people’s brains do work differently. Read the article on the research and the conclusions. I thought that this section was particularly interesting …”it seemed that creative people were more introspective. This led to increased self-awareness, including a greater familiarity with the darker and more uncomfortable parts of themselves. It may be because they engage with the full spectrum of life—both the dark and the light—that writers score high on some of the characteristics that our society tends to associate with mental illness. Conversely, this same propensity can lead them to become more grounded and self-aware. In openly and boldly confronting themselves and the world, creative-minded people seemed to find an unusual synthesis between healthy and “pathological” behaviors.” Another interesting bit: “…creativity is messy”


I updated the blog theme. After several years of having the same theme, I decided it was time to take advantage of some of the new features and functionality available with the newer themes. The most important of which is that the photos and posts will be more mobile friendly. Supposedly. I am still tweaking the options for this theme so there will be some more changes to come. You don’t have to stay tuned, because you will see them!