Monday, December 28, 2020

My Year as an Ambassador for Henry Glass Fabric

Hello Everyone,

My year has come to a close, and this will be my last post as a fabric ambassador for Henry Glass Fabrics.  What an opportunity this has been!  I appreciate the faith that Henry Glass Fabrics had in me.

I went back through my photos to see my creations.  I have to admit I was surprised at the volume.  Every other a month, a package would arrive at my doorstep and I had a month to create something.  They didn't make any suggestions or put any conditions on what I needed to complete for them.  All I knew is that I had exactly one month to make a project.  No pressure!    Here is a recap from the past year.

First up is Buttons & Bows.  I have a tutorial for this quilt posted HERE.  This quilt was an easy one.

Also in January, I made Peek-A-Boo-Pumpkins.  

I love this little table topper! I will be writing a pattern for this one, and it is going to be one of the projects for my Sew'n Wild Oaks retreats in 2021. 

Last but not least is Seasonal Hexie table topper to finish off January's projects.  I also have a tutorial for this project HERE.

Next up for the month of March is my Spoken For pattern.  If I had an existing pattern that I thought would fit the fabric, I would use it.  I have a tutorial for this block HERE.  

Then I created Bountiful Blessings.  There isn't a pattern for this one.  I find when the fabric panel is gone, the shelf life of the pattern is non-existent.

The big success for me was Christmas Ribbons.  Several quilt shops kitted this quilt, and it was a good seller.  I burned the midnight oil on this one by designing the quilt, making and quilting the quilt, and writing the pattern in a month.  Whew.....that was exhausting.

Then I made Lovey Dovey.  I still have to quilt this wall hanging, and write the pattern.  I also want to remake this design in reproduction fabrics.

Mazey loves Leaf Peepers.  This was another successful design for me.

I liked this pattern so much, I made it twice.  Once in Kim Diehl fabrics, and once in batiks.

As a general rule, I do not quilt with panels.  But this fabric lent itself beautifully to my Heartfire pattern.  I have a tutorial for this block HERE.

This is one of my favorite pictures that I've taken on a photo shoot of one of my quilts.  This quilt is called Cabin Cozy.  The pattern is almost written, and I will be releasing it after the first of the year.

This is going to be a little table runner that will look good on my table at Easter.  The pattern is called Buttonwood.

So there you have it,  my Henry Glass year in review.  If my schedule of classes, lectures, workshops, retreats, and quilt shows hadn't been erased from my calendar, I never would have had this much time to devote to Henry Glass Fabrics.  

I have to admit, at times it was tough coming up with ideas every other month.  I wanted to do a good job, but I didn't want to make myself crazy.  There were times when I was stark raving looney tunes trying to come up with ideas and see them to fruition. 

Next year will be a year of new designs and new opportunities.  I look forward to the challenges and the process of designing and creating.   After re-reading my Henry Glass, year in review.....I think I need a nap.

Madam Ambassador for the last time

Friday, December 25, 2020

Merry Christmas

Hello Everyone,

Although this year has been a challenge, let us all try to focus on the positive, and be grateful for our many blessings.  This year, we are making new memories while cherishing and reminiscing about the past. 

Next year at this time we will all be together with our families, and appreciating every single moment of being close, hugging, kissing, and laughing.  The "socially distanced" phrase will be in our rear view mirror.

I hope you have a wonderful day, and reflect on the important things in life.....which aren't "things".

Merry Christmas,



Saturday, December 19, 2020

Crossing the Pond

 Hello Everyone,

I have been so bad about posting anything this month.  I can't reveal the project that I'm working on yet, but I can share some good news.  My Crossing the Pond quilt is going to be in the May/June edition of QuiltMania magazine!

I still need to machine quilt this beauty, and I must admit I'm a little afraid to begin.  Now with my feet held to the fire, I'm going to have to decide how I'm going to quilt it.  I'll have to dig in after Christmas, put on my big girl panties, and just do it!  

Those of you who follow my blog know that my longarm is in the freezing garage.  I do have a heater I can use, but it is the equivalent of heating a barn.  I'll be like the little kid in A Christmas Story who got his tongue stuck to the light pole.  My hands will be stuck to the handlebars of my longarm.  I've thought about sending the quilt to a professional, but I want to take ownership of the entire, quilt-making process. Between wanting that, and my procrastination, I've managed to get myself into a pickle.

I wish, really wish, I could show you the gorgeous images of fabrics that are on the table right next to me.  I've been asked to design a block of the month for Marcus Fabrics using a new reproduction line designed by Judie Rothermel.  This is one of the prettiest lines I've seen!  You, my readers, are going to LOVE it as much as I do.

In my mind, the design had to be jaw-dropping gorgeous.  I've been working, and working, and working some more on it.  I designed three quilt in EQ8 software.  Three very different designs using different techniques.  I didn't think the quilts I designed had the "WOW" factor.

One afternoon this week, our main water line sprang a leak.  The whole time I was outside helping Mr. Joe dig, and repair the leak, I was thinking about the new design.  After the water line was fixed, and I got cleaned up, I sat down at the computer, and bingo, the break, away from the computer was just what I needed.  My jaw-dropping-wow-factor-quilt came to life before my eyes.  The next day I sent an image of the design to Marcus Fabrics, and received immediate validation that this was IT!

Now I'm pattern writing, and shop guide writing, which isn't a trivial undertaking.  I think, and hope this BOM is going to go big, and be in major quilting catalogs. Fingers crossed!

On another note, our son with Covid has finally turned the corner to feeling better.  It was such a worry!  He's a big, strapping 44-year-old man who goes to the gym daily, rides his mountain bike constantly, and goes hiking almost every weekend. He was reduced to total exhaustion for 16 days.  He called us the day he walked outside to the back yard and mowed the lawn.  That was a red-letter day!  Thank God for family, and his girlfriend delivering meals.  We spoke with him daily, but I got the real scoop from his girlfriend and daughter about how he was really feeling.  He put up a good front to us, but he was totally unconvincing.  

We knew he was feeling better when his sense of humor returned.  He said he lost his sense of smell and taste.  He prefaced that by saying he lost his sense of taste when he got married!  Insert grimacing face here.



Thursday, December 10, 2020

Testing, testing

 Hello Everyone,

Maybe you've been wondering where I've been.....maybe not.  I'm working on a special project for a major fabric company which has been filling my days.

I haven't touched the sewing machine for weeks, and I've missed it so much!  Yesterday, I put everything aside, and actually spent some time in my sewing room instead of sitting at the computer.

This is a technique new to me.....curved seams.  It reminds me of those dreaded set-in sleeves that my mom, the 4-H sewing instructor, tried to teach me.  I wasn't an ideal student! These seams are much easier, or I've matured enough to finally figure it out, and not fight it.

I somehow managed not to take home economics in high school.  I was quite partial to the humanities and the social sciences.  I guess having a mom who was a sewing instructor, kept me out of a domestic engineering class. 

The few and far between set-in sleeves that I did make, weren't always a great success.  I tended to have lots of puckers.  I always had more "sleeve" left over than garment.  That's when I decided to just take in the side seam.....which made the top quite snug. I finally got smart, and made only sleeveless blouses and dresses.  

Now, I wouldn't dream of going sleeveless!  Over the past few years I've developed "bat wings" when I raise my arms.  If I got caught out in a breeze, I may just take flight!

On the home front, life has been a bit stressful.  Our son tested positive for Covid.  So far he  seems to have a mild case.  I feel so helpless being 100 miles away.  We almost made a chicken soup run, but cancelled that when he placed a delivery for groceries. I could "feel" him rolling his eyes through the phone. 

We've decided to stay put at the cabin for Christmas.  This will be the first time ever that we haven't been with our kids and grandkids.  I know it's for the best, but I just can't wrap my brain around the idea. Before Christmas, we are going to make a run down to the city to drop off presents on the front porches of our kids, then scoot back to the mountains.  We will stay home this year, so we can all be together next year. 


Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Christmas Village

 Hello Everyone,

It's another day of sharing my Christmas decorations.  This pie safe is the home to my cookbook collection, that it until Christmas rolls around.  I move out all of my books, and fill the shelves with my Christmas houses.

My collection started about 30+ years ago when I bought this little farmhouse. 

My daughter gave me Grandma's House a couple of years ago.  This is absolutely the last house!  I am totally out of room.

The little downtown area comes alive with the hustle and bustle of the season.

I have my favorites houses, and I love to take them out of their boxes every year.  The first two shelves are the downtown area.  Next comes the suburbs.

We then have the farming area.

Last is the hinterland with cabins and camping.  

Every year when I put my village out on display, I feel as though I'm playing house.  To me, that is the sweetest of memories.  I'm not really playing house, I'm making a home.

I love the preparation time before Christmas.  To me this is the "best" time of the season.  The lights, the baking, and the planning all rolled into one.  It's the most wonderful time of the year.  As Diane would say, it's a Toon Cootie not an earworm! 


Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Toyland Tree


Hello Everyone,

The decorating continues.  Toyland Tree came out of the quilting cupboard, and now graces the wall in our bedroom.

I love putting this quilt on display every year.  It is just plain fun to look at.  All of the little toys love getting out of their storage area so they can see the world for the next month.

I've heard several people say they aren't going to decorate this year.  Well, for me, we need a little Christmas, right this very minute! (You can thank me later for planting the ear worm.) It's how I return to normal by surrounding myself with my favorite things that have been decorating my home, my parents home, and my grandmothers home for decades.  I feel that I am paying tribute to them, by hanging, and enjoying the special ornaments.

My mother painted this ornament for me in 1982.  It has been on our tree every year for the past 38 years.  This is what makes me happy, and brings life back to normal.

So play those Christmas Carols, and most importantly sing along, even though it drives those around you crazy.....that makes it more fun! We all NEED a little Christmas!