Friday, January 12, 2024

Applique in the Snow

Hello Everyone,

Another snowstorm rolled through the other day. I set up my workstation in the dining room so I could watch the snow and work on my applique at the same time.  

I love the applique process, the old-fashioned process using the starch method of applique.  I set up my Ott light as the cabin was dark in the middle of the day due to the storm.  At 3pm, I stopped for our afternoon hot cocoa break.  Was there a splash of Bailley's in it?  I'll let you decide.

I have a new tool which I used to apply the starch to the freezer paper which I really love. It is called the Aqua Touch Marker.  It is available HERE at The Quilt Show. The tool comes in a set of 3 applicators, so you have 3 sizes of tips to choose from. You can be surgical where you apply the starch, and it doesn't 'drip' on your workspace.  It can be a bit tricky to fill them with the starch, but once that's done, you are good to go for a long time.

I've been wanting to create a new project to incorporate applique using my Hearthstone fabric.  Over the next few weeks, I'll be creating different bouquets of flowers during each of the next snowstorms.  Rain is in our forecast for tonight and all day tomorrow......I guess I'll have to work on my piecing and my next fabric line.


Monday, January 8, 2024

Curling up in Comfort

 Hello Everyone,

This picture is me over the past few days.  We are limiting our trips outside to get a load of wood and respond to Mazey's needs to visit the powder room. 

Another 5" of snow arrived the other day, adding to our layer of ice.  It is so cold; the snow is not melting and falling off the branches of the trees. Today we plan on shoveling because we have to get out and get to the post office to mail the Etsy orders.  We may have to hitch Mazey up to a dog sled to maneuver the icy roads.

I saw this picture and quote on The Besotted Bookworm site on Facebook.  I LOVE it!

“The weather is a friend if you make it one. I look forward to the gray, quiet time for solitude, contemplation, reading, long conversations with friends. Colors are softer, sounds have more depth, the pace is gentler. Instead of resentment at the lack of sun, snuggle into the gray velvet quilt and make yourself a cup of tea." ~ Jennifer Jones

Art: Esther Bennink

My footnote to this quote is the only way we could have a conversation with a friend is over the phone as we really shouldn't be out on the roads to go see each other.  

Someone asked me in an email if I've ever made a two-color quilt.  I had to think for a second and then I remembered my Winterset pattern. I actually love this wall hanging.  But the reason I don't make two-color quilts is that I get bored too easily.

I love the challenge of pulling fabric from my stash and combining many different fabric lines and colors. 

When I'm not shoveling today, or working on orders, and designing, I'll be curled up under a quilt by the fire with a cup of cocoa. is good until you start slipping on the ice and your arms act like a windmill trying to stay upright!




Sunday, January 7, 2024

2023 Year in Review

 Hello Everyone,

It's 23 degrees this morning at Wilder's Last Resort.  The snow that fell yesterday is now frozen solid.  All pathways and the driveway turned into an ice-skating rink overnight.  We will hunker down inside the cabin until all of the Flat-Landers check out of their Airbnb's and drive or skate their way out of the mountains. 

We have to walk over to our woodpile which doesn't look big enough to get us through the season.  We have another woodpile closer to the cabin.

Usually, I greet the first snowfall with child-like anticipation.  This year not so much as last Winter was brutal! The trees look like spring-loaded collapsed snow-ladened umbrellas. It's best not to be under them when they decided to drop their load.

I haven't blogged since Christmas Eve! This doesn't mean I've been sitting still and doing nothing.  There's all of the year-end accounting, order filling, entertaining friends, and being entertained by friends, and working on new projects and a new fabric line.

I thought I would do a year in review on my blog.  Let me tell you after taking a look back at last year I became exhausted!  Here we go!


I finished Calico Cottage in preparation for my trip to my trip back to the Chicago area to teach at the Pieceful Gathering retreat.  

I do LOVE these little 3" cottages!


This was the roll-out month for my Bridle Path BOM.  We had to turn the dining room into a shipping dock and packaged and shipped thousands of patterns.

The roll-out of the BOM was also the roll-out of my Hearthstone fabric line.


Gail, and I and a couple of our dear friends, flew to Chicago for the Pieceful Gathering retreat where I was the featured teacher.  This quilt shop is a must go to shop!

It was a bit daunting to teach a workshop to sixty attendees.  They were all so nice. and we had such a good time with this creative group of women.

While we were in Illinois, there was a major blizzard at my cabin. I was actually glad I missed it, but I did worry about Mr. Joe and Mazey being home alone.


The sky cleared and the snow melted by the end of April for my first Sew'n Wild Oaks retreat of the year.


I went to a retreat at Zephyr Cove with my quilt guild.

It was fabulous!  So fabulous that I'm hosting a retreat at Zephyr Cove in September.  I couldn't get this large room, but I did get a beautiful room located right on Lake Tahoe.


In June, my sister Gail and I flew to New York for a visit to Marcus Fabrics.

We played tourist in between meetings and dinners with the Marcus Staff and other designers.  Here we are at the top of the Empire State Building.

Gail planned a full agenda which included the Statue of Liberty, the 911 Memorial, the Brooklyn Bridge, open air bus tour, you name it, we did it and walked over 33 miles in a few days.


With help from my friends, there were several cutting and folding sessions in preparation for retreats.

What fun we had!  I couldn't have done it without so much help from my friends.


Retreat #2 at Snowflake Lodge.  It's a delight for me to see friends gathering together.  This was also the month when I got my venomous bites on my legs.  I'm happy to report I'm doing well, but still have some lingering symptoms. 


Retreat #3 in September.  Sew much fun!

I finished my first wool project and made kits for the retreat of Autumn Thyme.


I finished my Dutch Treat quilt just in time for my reveal day for Mondays with Marcus. 

Mr. Joe and I headed off on a 12-day road trip to Houston for Quilt Market.

Bridle Path was hanging in the Marcus Fabrics booth.  I spoke at a School House session the first day of the show.


The 4th and last retreat.  The group always comes to my cabin the first night of the retreat.

I spoke at the Golden Valley Guild in Sacramento to a fun group of ladies.  I also taught a workshop.


My year of travel and events was over, and it was time to get ready for the Holidays.

In between all of the trips, shipping BOM and Etsy patterns, and retreats, we went to as many of the events we could to see our grandkids and kids.  From FFA, to rodeos, to lacrosse games, to birthday parties we were there. What a year!

Next year is shaping up to be even more exciting.  I'm going to the featured artist at a quilt show in May. I'm hosting three retreats, and I'm working on a super-secret project that is going to put me on the quilting map.  There's so much to look forward to that I can't wait to get up in the morning and start in creating.  Look out world, here I come!