Tuesday, February 7, 2017

I've Got Some 'Splainin' to Do!

I've been quiet on my Blog for way too long. As the saying goes...Life gets in the way sometimes. Bear with me as I recount the past several months.

The first reason/excuse was because I was a quilting-sewing maniac this past summer. I found my creative mojo as smoke seemingly wafted from the motor of my Bernina! I might add that (of course) none of the projects on which I was working had anything to do with simple or easy. Here are a few of the items I produced last summer...you might have seen them on Instagram or Facebook or at one of my guild talks:

There are over 3500 one inch tumblers in this quilt that I designed.
Detail of the border from the above Tiny Tumbler Quilt
This is my Positive-Negative Ode to My Accucutter
Detail of above Positive-Negative Quilt
My second reason/excuse that I have not blogged or even bothered to updated my blog for a very long time was that I had an incredibly full schedule of guild talks, vending at quilt shows, and book signings last fall. It was an immense amount of work but, as always, a lot of fun too. I presented my first workshop in September at the Eastern Iowa Quilt Guild. Getting ready for the workshop was no small feat. The workshop that I offer is a Tiny Tumbler workshop. I pre-cut packets of 100 tumblers which will make a 10 1/2 x 10 1/2" block and made a pattern to explain my method of sewing tumblers. Pre-cutting the tumblers took so much more time that I guessed!  Here is a photo of my first class with everyone proudly holding their semi-finished pieces:

Thank you Eastern Iowa Quilt Guild!
Reason/excuse number three of why I fell behind in my communiques: TKR...Total Knee Replacement of my right knee. I scheduled the surgery not to interfere with my book schedule...or so I thought. Three days after my final guild talk of the 2016 fall season...there I was with a rather large scar on my knee and as helpless as I've ever been! In a million years I never thought it would hit me so hard. I admit to being stubborn and can usually push through anything, but I quickly found I was NOT in control! Add to this a few other health issues that I was having and yours truly was completely out of commission for about 3 months. 😟   No pictures of my knee here!!!

Book 5 News

Okay, this is the hard part for me to tell you about. I guess I'll just spit it out and get it over with...the release of Book 5 will be delayed for a few months. I had hoped #5 would be out by early spring but realistically it appears as though I won't be able to have it finished, edited, and published until early summer.  I have rationalized to myself that I've managed to get four books out in four years, so if I run a little late on the 5th one, I shouldn't be so hard on myself. ...But I guess that's what we do when we fall short of our goals, isn't it--we beat ourselves up!

Oh dear, will my ramblings ever stop?
My hubby and me
After graduating from college in 1977, my DH and I opened Frame Masters, Ltd., a custom picture frame shop. For forty years we have been at the same location in Matteson, Illinois. You can probably guess where this is going... We will be closing our beloved business and selling the building that has housed it for the past forty years. WE ARE RETIRING!!! But not from writing, guild talks, or vending...those will be part of our many new adventures as our next life's chapter begins. Until then, we have 40 years of de-cluttering to do at the building.

Thanks for your patience about Book 5.

Thursday, October 13, 2016


My first Tiny Tumbler Workshop was a success! Thank you Eastern Iowa Quilt Guild... what an amazing group of quilters.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Curved Binding Tip

We all love a pretty curved border and I'll be putting on another curved binding when my latest quilt gets back from my favorite LAQ. I sure wish I knew this tip years ago when I did my first curved binding!

I just watched this quick tutorial from iquilt and HAD to share with you. It looks amazing and I'll let you know how it goes when I try this for myself. Enjoy and have a Quilty day.

Monday, June 13, 2016

June 13th is National Sewing Machine Day

I don't know about you, but my sewing machine is a very important part of my creative life. It's almost like having another child. Just as I can tell by simply looking at my child's face or listening to the timbre of his voice that something is not right, so can I tell by the slightest sound or vibration that my beloved machine is in need of some TLC.

So, no matter what brand or how old your machine is...give it a hug today for all that precious machine means to you and all that it does for you. And by all means, have a happy National Sewing Machine Day everyone!

Monday, June 6, 2016

ATTN: Minnesota Quilters and Readers

I will be heading your way for a book signing Saturday, June 11, at the Minnesota Quilters Show (St. Cloud River's Edge Convention Center) from 9-4 ... at Craftsman's Touch Books, booth #731.
Stop by and say 'Hi!' -- I hope to see you!
The Craftsman's Touch-Books
Come to the Minnesota Quilt Show in St. Cloud, MN and meet well known authors, Monica Ferris, Arlene Sachitano, and Karen DeWitt. They will be signing 9am-5pm in our booth #731, June 9-11. Needlework mystery writer, Monica will be there Thursday and Friday. Quilt mystery author Arlene will be there all 3 days. Novelist Karen will sign with Arlene on Saturday.

Friday, May 20, 2016

My, Oh My...What Has Taken Me So Long?

My promise to Blog right after Paducah didn't happen exactly the way I thought it would. Excuses aside, I was gobsmacked by my first trip to Quilt Week. Moving forward I can see this as an annual pilgrimage and wonder what in the heck took me so long to get down there. After all I live in the south suburbs of Chicago--Paducah is only a quick five hour drive from my house!
So, here we go...
a capsulized version of a life-changing experience for a quilt lover:

 Three first-timers heading to Paducah with excitement-overload running through their Quilty minds!
Glenna, Karen, and Sandy ready to roll.
We left Sunday noon for the 374 mile drive, and would spend 6 nights and 7 glorious days at Quilt Week in Paducah, Kentucky. And here we are!
About day four or five we ran into this fun photo op.

Some random photos:
Hancock's of Paducah. Are we in heaven?
Opening Night at the National Quilt Museum. Fabulous quilts and wonderful food--the perfect combination!
Lisa Bonnegan owner of Primitive Gatherings, Sandy, Karen, and Teresa
Sandy and Karen with Ricky Tims!!!
I met Kat from Studiokat Designs! She designs such fabulous bags! I've been following her on Facebook and it was great to meet her...what a nice person.
With author Marie Bostwick...her hair is gorgeous by the way!
OH, YES I DID-- I bought it!
Block a Day for a year--What was I thinking! I really do like it and have started the first few blocks...so I am officially only five (soon to be six) months behind. YIKES!

I fell in love with this.  Standing in the vendor's booth, I was transfixed by this modern table runner. I have plans to modify it into a large quilt, and have been working on it a bit since I got home. So far I'm pleased with the results. I'll post more when there is something to show.

A friend of mine, Rosemary Keblusek, had her quilt shown at Paducah! 
Congratulations Rosemary.

And then there was The Ricky Tims Show!
Wow--what a fun surprise! We had no idea what to expect but it ended up being entertaining, inspirational, and fantastic! I'm now a HUGE fan of Ricky's--Wow, is he ever creative!

And Finally, as I often say, it's all about the hair.
I have been growing my hair out for over a year. Images of long-flowing, bright-white hair crowded my creative mind. A child of the sixties...I would let my 'old lady' freak-flag fly! I would be able to style my hair into a fabulous up-do, pull it into a ponytail, or simply wear it straight. Well, after a year-plus of struggling through ugly-staged hair, I was nowhere near any of those stylish scenarios of which I dreamed.
Enter Paducah.
I saw so many wonderful hair styles on white haired quilters that I decided then and there to go short again! Before we left Paducah on Saturday I called my stylist and made an appointment for Tuesday.
Flipping through photos on my phone Louise and I decided to do a 'medium' cut. At first I liked it but after almost a month I'm ready to go shorter still.

Here is my hair diary for those that might be interested for some strange reason:
Here I am with Kat. UGH, look at my hair...I need HELP!
A cute cut, but the addition of color is soooo me.

Now we're talkin'. This is an updated version of how I used to wear my hair for years.

This is just plain cute, but not sure it would translate onto this old body!

And here's an unflattering selfie after my haircut back from Paducah.
 What will tomorrow bring at the salon?

Okay, enough with the self-serving hair phobia stories...Here are just a few of the Quilty beauties from Paducah. Note: Photos were not allowed in the Quilt Museum.

Excuse the length of this post. I had a lot to say/show about my first Paducah experience and I can see where it will easily take months before the glow wears off.
I hope you've enjoyed my random musings from my first visit to Quilt Week!

Saturday, April 16, 2016

I'm Heading to Paducah for the First Time!

I'm over the moon with excitement! I'm joining two good friends and driving due south from Chicago until we get to the quilters paradise of Paducah, Kentucky.

Just like the Blues Brothers we're on a mission! It’s 374 miles from Chicago to Paducah, we’ve got a full tank of gas, half a ton of chocolate, we're leaving at noon, and we'll definitely be wearing sunglasses!
HIT IT!  …And We’re Off to Quilt Week!

If all goes as planned, and I'm not dead tired when we get back to the hotel at night, I'm hoping to do a little blogging. ...Stay tuned.