Wednesday, July 01, 2015

It’s All About the Slaw!

Hello from Quilt Villa!

Sadie and I made the journey this morning and have been settling in and enjoying the cooler temps the mountain provides.

You can tell the humidity is high.

the mountains are hazed over, a ghost of themselves.  It’s been about a month since I’ve been up here ---can’t believe it’s been that long, and things are green and lush and summer is fully upon us.

I am turning my attention toward family and a long holiday weekend.  Is there anything better?

Something happens to me the moment I unpack the groceries.  I want to cook!  I want to provide yummy food for my family.  This doesn’t often happen at home, where work is ever-present and schedules have us all going in opposite directions making a “together” meal time a rare occasion.

But up here?  FOOD HAPPENS!

Today I felt like making a big batch of cole slaw so I thought I’d share my favorite recipe with you.

2015 Leader & Ender Challenge! TUMBLERS!

Happy JULY!!

You know what time of year that makes it? 

July is when we kick off our Leader & Ender project for the coming year.

This is all about  choosing a part of our Scrap User’s Systems that may be a bit neglected, or a bit over flowing and putting them to good use!

Leaders & Enders are individual pieces used instead of just removing your work from the machine leaving long thread tails, and to STOP the insanity of a thread covered folded over throw away piece of fabric to keep the piecing continuous.  Why throw that thread away? 

Use purposeful pieces to sew together in between the lines of your chain piecing and at the end of the year, you’ll have most-if not all- of a quilt put together!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

When Fabric Folding Never Ends…

This has been my day today.

And I have loved every minute of it!

Last night I installed a new desktop computer – and while programs were reinstalling, and things were uploading, downloading and otherwise being transferred to the new computer, I was nearby –folding fabric.

Folding, organizing, deciding which ones to keep as fat quarters, and which ones to sort into the “cut it down and use it up” Scrap Users System…

Which really DOES work for having strips on hand.

I’ve made several quilts this year.  My strip stash has been a bit depleted in some areas, and I am excited about pulling in some new blood!

I started with the blues….


Moved on to the browns.

Who knew I had SO MANY browns?!


And then on to the greens.

I’m going to need MORE containers.  These are shoe boxes with lids from Lowes.  And I fold the fat quarters to fit their height.

I have bought 3 Lowes stores in my area clear out of them – and I’m going to need MORE!

Maybe there really IS too much of a good thing!!


And then I find fabric by my friend Pepper Cory!

And then I realize, fabric is more than fabric.  We acquire fabric not just for its beauty – there are many beautiful things out there that we don’t feel compelled to stash –fabric comes with POSSIBILTIES.  Dreams.  Visions.  It has the potential to spark our creativity, it’s a seed planted to grow into something wonderful. 

Quilts are much more than the sum of their parts –when we grow a quilt, we grow ourselves.

A quilt may last on this earth longer than we will.

Something I have discovered about greens though ---they don’t like to play well together.  So I have separated them into 3 categories each with their own bins.  Yellow green.  Blue green.  Browny-olive greens.

They are all beautiful..but some I just have a real hard time combining with others – I don’t care if it is all out there in nature..there are just some greens that do not look good together in my quilts!  I think green is the one color I can be fairly picky about.

So now they are happy – and I learned something about myself in the process….


The bins fit great –3 bins high!


I’m probably going to run out of shelf space too!

I love how clean and organized this looks…but be glad you are not seeing the chaos it has created in the process. 

Things ALWAYS get messier before they get better!

That empty spot between the red and the blue is saved for purples -- but I'm not there yet.

This evening as the sun drifts to the west, I am waving bye-bye to June 2015.  I’m not sure how it went so fast, but tings do seem to ramp up faster and faster anymore.

That means – tomorrow we welcome in JULY! 

You won’t want to miss tomorrow morning’s post.  I have something special in store for you!

I’ll be headed up to the cabin – Jason comes in tomorrow evening, so Sadie and I will go up, get all of the groceries to stock us up for the long weekend.

Quilt Villa, here I come!

I'll be stopping at the Lowes in Wilkesboro to pick up more boxes on my way.

Click Here to like our Quiltville Friends Page on Facebook for more fun!

Click Here to join our sister group, Quiltville's Open Studio on Facebook, a place to Sew, Share & Grow!!

Taping in August–Call for Quilts!

I love working with Quiltmaker Magazine!

It’s been almost 10 years now, this relationship friendship with editors, designers, and folks who love quilts and are as excited about fabric and sewing stuff, just as we all are.

My journey with them has been an awesome partnership, and I’m excited to see it grow!

When they first proposed to me that I do an Addicted to Scraps column in every issue, I had no idea how big it would be, how much people would love it – it was just a simple idea based on the newspaper quilt patterns of old --

Here is a BLOCK PATTERN.  No quilt pattern given – get your brain in gear and see what you can do with it!

I’ve got some wonderful gals working as part of the Scrap Addicts team, and they are working behind the scenes to create quilts in their own layouts and design based on the blocks presented in each column.

Now this is where YOU come in!

I am doing some taping of online workshops focused around my Addicted to Scraps column in August.

I am looking for quilts to be included in the gallery section of each episode. Would you consider allowing me to include your quilt for the world to see?

Monday, June 29, 2015

The Big Big Very Big Night!

Saturday!  7pm!  My big lecture date at the Vermont Quilt Festival!

This was kind of a momentous thing for me.  There is only ONE key speaker during the show – and this year they invited me to present MORE Leaders & Enders and the Scrap Users System to the entirety of lecture-goers.


The last time I was here, Pat Sloan was the speaker and she did such a wonderful bang up and funny presentation, I didn’t know if I could find myself in the same class and do this for so many ---but if my friend Pat can do it, so can I --

Or I will give it the best shot I’ve got anyway.

And I did.

Playing with Jacks, VQF Style!

Put the Vermont Quilt Festival on your BUCKET LIST.

And make it happen!

It’s a fabulous venue with awesome workshops in every arena of quilting – traditional, modern, art, surface design, paper piecing, applique, wool, you name it – there is an instructor there to teach it!

You can take a half day workshop and spend the second half of the day at the show, you can take full day workshops, one or more and turn it into retreat time with friends.

I just can’t say enough about this Venue, it’s up there as one of the top shows I love to teach at.

Of course, the best part of all?  Crazy fun students!!

This is Mia and Tracey ---in the remedial corner! HA!

By the time they got to register, this was the only workshop I had left open, the others were full, and they came anyway –even though they took this workshop from me 4 years ago!

Yes, they came with their tails between their legs, and their UFOs in tow, ready to rekindle their love for this project and see it to completion – what a great way to spend half of a day!

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Sister’s Choice at VQF!

I found my sister from another continent!

This is Andrea, from Australia!

She emailed me a couple days ahead of the show, stating that she and her family were here in Vermont on vacation – or more like – SHE had worked Vermont into her family’s vacation plans strategically picking dates around the Vermont Quilt Festival so she could be here!

This woman has the power of persuasion when it comes to getting what she wants.

I like her!

I told her in email that I would love to meet her if she can find my classroom either before class started, or at the end of lunch time, or the end of class day as suited her schedule.

She found me!  What a fun gal!

And she even played volunteer to be a quilt holder for my quilts last night during my lecture.  She just stepped right in when there was a need for tall girls ---

Thank you, Andrea!

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Jamestown Landing at VQF 2015!

How much fun can taking a workshop at the Vermont Quilt Festival be?

As fun as you make it!

And I love it when mothers and daughters, or sisters, or long time friends come TOGETHER to make some precious memories.

Take a look at this photo…do you see ME on the cell phone taking this photo?

How funny!

You girls brought so much joy to my day yesterday!

It was a Jamestown Landing day ---and before the class even started, I have a visit from a special friend:

Friday, June 26, 2015

Opening Ceremony Highlights–VQF!

This is a very cropped shot of how far away I was from the stage as the 2015 Vermont Quilt Festival was declared officially open with the annual awards ceremony, followed by a chocolate and champagne gala!

So many amazing quilts, and well deserved awards.

One thing that has stuck with me since the last time I was able to teach here in Vermont a couple years ago at the Quilt Festival, was the wonderful encouragement for young quilters to enter their first quilts --

And when I am talking YOUNG, I am really talking YOUNG here ---