Thursday, December 31, 2020

December Mini


Happy New Year one and all. December 31 is special for me. My son was born on the 31st and last year we welcomed a new grandson on this same day!

 Back in May, I posted a request for orphan blocks for the now completed “Community Supper” quilt. Some of you sent more than one block. My friend Dawn (Collector with a Needle) sent this block which went into the quilt, and this amazing little beauty that I knew had to wait for something special. 

It made the perfect center for this little Christmas season mini. I felt it deserved the best so I mitered the corners of this super wavy stripe. Not perfect, but pretty good considering it had been a while. It isn’t really laziness, I truly do love corner blocks. 

 Visit my fellow “Mad Mini Makers” to see what to see their December creations. A few may not have a mini for this month, but I linked them in because we all need a little extra sunshine today to carry us into the new and glorious year to come!

Quilting Babcia (Amity Quilter)

Randy (Barrister’s Block)

Cyndi (Busy Thimble) 

Cathy (Big Lake Quilter)

Barb (Fun with Barb)

Shasta (High Road Quilter)

Robin (I Like to Create) 

Joy (The Joyful Quilter) 

Julie (Julie K Quilts)

Kathy (Kathy’s Quilts)

Sandy (My Material Creations)

Angie (Quilting on the Crescent)

Barbara (Quilts, Gravestones and Elusive Ancestors)

Janet (Rogue Quilts)

Kyle (Timeless Reflections)

Cynthia (Wabi-Sabi Quilts)

 As for what is to come in the New Year… I believe I will continue my monthly minis for 2021. We have all endured hardships and interrupted schedules this past year. I feel the one constant in my quilting endeavors has been achieving my monthly mini goal. I would hate to lose that momentum so I will continue the merriment.

 I welcome any and all to join in at any time. None of us need added pressure, so just jump in when you can and let me know and I will link you all in to the monthly post. I post the minis on the last day of the month (or sometimes the first day of the following month – remember – no pressure!)

 Happy New Year!

Monday, December 28, 2020

Fig Leaf and Flower - ready to quilt


This delightful quilt project seemed to have the 2020 curse right from the beginning! As some of you may recall, I chose this wonderful buttery yellow (see photo number 3 for a more accurate color) for the background of my Fig Leaf and Flower (Collector With a Needle) sew-a-long quilt. 

 With a symmetrical pattern like this I usually back baste for accuracy. While drawing on the pattern, I discovered 2 tiny holes in the fabric.

It seemed a miracle that they would be covered up by the twisty turning vine. Problem solved! 

 But then, after appliqueing 187 of the 213 petals in the center medallion, I realized that I had oriented my center vine in the wrong direction. When working out a background, I always buy extra, but I bought the last of the bolt which would have been “just enough” if I hadn’t made this giant error! It took weeks of careful thought to find a solution I could live with. In the end, I did not to let the curse bother me and decided to make a smaller quilt to finish now and start over with a different background in the new year when my mind will be clearer!

 I eliminated some of the appliques in the center to simplify the design a bit and then added a plain border. I have loved this green border fabric forever, but never seemed to find the right project for it. The 4 corner blocks seemed to fit the bill. I’m calling it, “Petaluma”. I have so enjoyed appliqueing all these petals! 

I hope to start quilting before the end of the year.


Our little village has been in my husband’s family for 100 years. We are now enjoying it with the next generation.

May your village be filled with peace and contentment in the coming year.

Monday, December 21, 2020


 I finished my 3rd orphan block quilt over the weekend. I really had a ball putting all these crazy mishmash blocks together and it felt great to finally check something off the list! It is big so I decided to just photograph it on the bed. Perfect for today's temperatures in the teens!  

And, as usual with these potholder quilts, the back was fun to make too. 

I like to give all my potholder quilts names that have some sort of cooking or food reference in the title. I had originally named this one “Stash Hash”. After finishing the last block, I looked into the “orphan” box and realized that I had not even made a dent! 

In fact, it seemed as though I had even more blocks than I started with, so I am changing the name to “Sourdough”. 

I have utilized blocks and/or fabrics from so many of my friends in putting these together. I want to thank everyone who shared their “sourdough” with me. If there is anyone out there who would like to make one of your own, let me know and I will send you some “starter”. 

Hope you get some time in your sewing place today!

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Casandra's Circle blocks 9 & 10

 I seem to be falling behind on poor Cassandra’s Circle sew-a-long. I last posted block #8, Molly’s Cotton Boll.

Here is block #9 

back (I had already removed the selvedge from this fabric, but I believe it is from Barbara' "Lately Arrived From London". Love it!

I have taken a lot of liberties with these blocks to make them fit my smaller (9’ finished) size. I had this one all quilted and bound and then realized I had to add a heart. After all, it is called, “Buck Preston’s Lost Love”!

 And, #10. “Carolina Rose”. I adore this yellow fabric. Wish I had 10 yards of it!

back (this is one of my all time favorite fabrics - I know, I have a lot of favorites!

Please visit Barbara’s Civil War blog (here) to read the wonderful accounts of Mary Chestnut’s life and her “circle of friends”. 

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

New England Quilt Museum - It's Official!

 In September my friend Pam (Pamela Weeks – Curator at NEQM) asked if I would be able to share some of my quilts in an exhibition this winter. NEQM holds a special place in my heart and I am honored to have my quilts gracing its walls from February through April.

 We delivered the quilts over the weekend and I was so excited to be able to see 3 of the most wonderful exhibitions ever. First, the collection of Baltimore Album quilts was beyond sensational. I had never seen so many Baltimore type quilts in one place. Truly remarkable! 

It was hard to pick a favorite, but this one really spoke to me. 
I have loved this one for a long time. It is owned by Deb Clooney and the detail is simply amazing. You know how I love to applique circles. Look at these babies. 
and this is one of my all time favorite blocks on any quilt, quirky, like me!

The exhibition in the main gallery is one I have wanted to see for quite a while:

 The Quilted Canvas III, Still Here! is the final exhibition in a series that began in 2017 at the New England Quilt Museum to celebrate America’s pioneering art quilters. This third installment features the works of four such pioneers-- Judi Blaydon, Rhoda Cohen, Nancy Halpern, and Jan Myers-Newbury. These artists received “classical” training in art school in the 1950s and 1960s, but chose to explore fabric as their primary creative medium at a time when this was unusual.

In the 1960s and 1970s, the “hippy movement” and the American Bicentennial spurred a craft revival and general re-awakening of interest in fiber arts. Artists explored the textile medium through the lens of a fine arts perspective and shattered conventional notions of what the American patchwork quilt should be. 

Exhibited internationally, coveted by collectors, and featured in numerous publications, the innovative works of these four women continue to demand our attention and influence new generations of textile artists.

 I have followed the work of all 4 of these artists for years and it was wonderful to see some old familiar pieces and new works that I had never seen. Fabulous! I'm sorry that I lost (somewhere in cyberspace I am sure) the image of Rhoda Cohen's definition of an art quilt, because it was spot on. I have admired her work for decades. 

This was an amazingly clever work and I loved Nancy's description. I too feel trapped in a world of technological advances that I will never master. 

This Jan Myers-Newbury quilt was my husband's favorite.

The mini gallery of NEQM quilts featured quilts with “numerous” pieces. This gallery is often my favorite part of my visit and this one did not disappoint! I’m sorry I neglected to photograph the card on this one, but I believe there are over 10,000 pieces in this quilt. 

 So, that is just a tiny taste of what is up right now. It was sensory overload and I highly recommend a visit. NEQM is following strict CDC guidelines and I felt very safe at all times. The museum also offers virtual tours for supporting guilds. Check their website (here) to see if your guild is one of those supporters – and, if they are not, perhaps you can convince them that they should be.

 Nothing would please me more than to “meet up” with all my New England blogging friends for a trip down, but times being what they are, I will stick to my “wait and see” attitude and hope that things will improve before the exhibition ends in the Spring. If you live in New England, I hope you get a chance to visit. For the time being, we can get a lot closer to the quilts than we can to each other!

                                                          Happy Quilting!

Monday, November 30, 2020

November Mini

 My November mini, “Madders of My Heart” utilizes some of my favorite reproduction “madder” fabrics. I don’t wear brown, but I surely love it in nature and in antique quilts. 

I used this beautiful stripe as my sashing.

Visit my fellow “Mad Mini Makers” to see what to see their November creations.

 Quilting Babcia (Amity Quilter)

Randy (Barrister’s Block)

Cathy (Big Lake Quilter)

Barb (Fun with Barb)

Shasta (High Road Quilter)

Julie (Julie K Quilts)

Kathy (Kathy’s Quilts)

Sandy (My Material Creations)

Barbara (Quilts, Gravestones and Elusive Ancestors)

Janet (Rogue Quilts)

Kyle (Timeless Reflections)

Cynthia (Wabi-Sabi Quilts)

 And, I discovered something silly, but interesting over the weekend. I got a new phone recently and there are so many more emoji’s than my old phone I was sure I would be able to find a quilting one. I could not believe the obscure images I found and not one even close to being quilt related. Being from Maine, I love curling as much as the next person, but I cannot believe I found a curling stone and not one image of even a needle and thread! Are there really more curlers in the world than quilters?

Enjoy the day!

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Happy Thanksgiving


This is the sentiment I want to send along to everyone… 

 But, although we are thankful for so many things, I know we all wish that the world will be in a better place by next Thanksgiving. 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Snap out of it!

 That is what I keep telling myself. I was doing so well for a while, hanging on to the positive and ignoring the negative. But the last few weeks have taken their toll. Although I continue to quilt each day, I have lost my Blogging mojo. In fact, I have had very little screen time in the past few months. I really need to regroup and get the “zip” back into my daily routine. I miss my blogging friends!!

 I have been working on my 3rd pot luck quilt, “Stash Hash” every day. 

I have used up all the little batting scraps.

The scrap baskets themselves don’t seem to be going down, although I have used up a few really oldies. 

I usually cull them down just before our monthly Kaleidoscope meeting for the freebee table, but I have been unable to attend the 2 outdoor meetings we have had.

 And, I have finished my Cassandra Circle (Barbara Brackman) blocks 9 & 10.

I have had fun with this red polka dot background. Do visit the FB page (here) to see all the creative versions of these wonderful blocks.

 Another big “bummer” is that, this was to be my first visit to Houston ever! My friend Kathy and I were going to fly down and stay with her sister. Thanks to the hard work of Dawn Cook Ronningen (Collector with a Needle), I was to have 2 of my quilts in the display of the Noah and Matilda sew-a-long quilts. All is not lost however, as we will all be able to visit the show online. You can go (here) to purchase tickets. I truly feel sorry for Dawn who put so much effort into organizing this exhibition. Hope you all get a chance to visit the online show. 

 Perhaps the biggest reason for my “slump” is missing my family this Thanksgiving. We usually meet at my sister’s house in the mountains of western Maine for a huge celebration. Last year there were 42 of us and the family is still growing! So… I am going to shrug off the “grumps” and start being grateful for the friends and family I have and revel in the fact that we will be together again soon!

 Happy Quilting to all 

and may you have something in your life this week to alleviate the “grumps”!

Monday, November 2, 2020

Stash Hash


What do you do when you have more projects going than you could possibly finish in a year… you simply start something new!

 I had so much fun putting “Community Supper” together that I decided to gather up all (well, at least half) of my orphan blocks and make another “pot luck” quilt for my bed.

 I’m going to call this one “Stash Hash” since everything came from my stash. In fact, the only fabrics I have cut into are the yellow for the sashing and the red for the bindings, the rest have all come from the scrap bins. Even the 4-patch backings are made from scraps. 


Many of you sent more than one block to me for the “Community Supper” quilt, which I have incorporated into this one. 

I will post a list of contributors when all blocks are complete. There will be 90 in all. And, yes I have enough blocks for yet another “potluck” quilt. I liken this type of quilt to a sourdough starter. No matter how many orphan blocks and scraps I use, I always seem to have more!! Maybe it is more like an old Sci Fi movie – “The Blob That Ate My Sewing Room”! Stay tuned - if you dare!

Saturday, October 31, 2020

October Monthly Mini


Aptly named, “Pumpkin Patch”, this month’s mini was a joy to make. I added a bit of extra batting to the pumpkins and hand stitched the curves to simulate the real thing.

I used this whimsical Halloween print on the back. 

Who doesn’t love pumpkins? They are cute, colorful and they taste delicious. 

Cruise through my fellow mini maker’s pumpkin patches to see what they have created this month.


Quilting Babcia (Amity Quilter)

Randy (Barrister’s Block)

Cathy (Big Lake Quilter)

Barb (Fun with Barb)

Shasta (High Road Quilter)

Julie (Julie K Quilts)

Kathy (Kathy’s Quilts)

Katy (Katy Quilts)

Sandy (My Material Creations)

Barbara (Quilts, Gravestones and Elusive Ancestors)

Janet (Rogue Quilts)

Kyle (Timeless Reflections)

Cynthia (Wabi-Sabi Quilts)

 Happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Sew-along updates: Cassandra's Circle and Fig Leaf and Flower


I am very thankful for the sew-a-longs I have been involved with this year. They have (for the most part) truly saved me from overthinking (I’ve actually done very little thinking at all in 2020) my quilting endeavors.

 I finished our 3-way (Barrister’s Block, Fun With Barb and me) medallion challenge fairly quickly because we kept it simple. We were all experiencing Covid brain! Now I just need to quilt it.

 Barbara Brackman’s (Civil WarQuilts) Cassandra’s Circle has kept me entertained with the wonderful stories that go along with each block. Here is my most recent block, Molly’s Cotton Boll. 

 My Sew-a-long with Dawn (Collector with a Needle) this year is with her new pattern, “Fig Leaf and Flower”. Dawn and her daughter create wonderful patterns of antique quilts in Dawn’s collection.

 One of the first things Dawn states is to “read the instructions thoroughly before cutting”. Makes perfect sense to me. Of course, if I had done that, I would not be in the predicament I am now. I backbasted and appliqued the stems, leaves, flowers and 183 of the 213 petals before I discovered that I had oriented my swirly vine in the wrong direction!  

I borrowed Dawn's image so I could show you what I mean. The pattern is supposed to orient like this on the center square: 

Funny, normally I would have wadded it up and put it in a drawer until my tears dried. But in all that has happened lately, this seemed so petty. I literally laughed out loud. It felt good to laugh, in fact I couldn’t stop! 

 So… I have to “start thinking” and come up with a clever way to salvage this center. At this point I think I will make this into a smaller quilt and go shopping for background fabric for round #2! See, there is a silver lining after all.

 Stay tuned for the next episode of “sewing in the fog”!

Monday, October 12, 2020

Winner - Lucky #7

I laughed when I pulled the lucky number “7” out the mask and was delighted to find out that the commenter was Janet (RogueQuilts). Janet has made nearly 500 masks!! She is a super participant in our monthly mini’s. I’m sure she will make something fantastic with these little charm squares.


And after all the mask making, I hope she takes a few moments to enjoy the latest issues of “Primitive Quilts and Projects” and Quiltmania’s “Simply Vintage”.

 I would like to say that each and every commenter is a winner. You have all done your part in helping others survive the struggles we are facing right now. Kudos to all of you! Quilters are the best!

Friday, October 2, 2020

Mask Production 101 with a little giveaway


After the 50th mask came off my machine, I thought – “enough”! But the requests kept coming and so another 50 marched through and then out the door. I ran out of elastic weeks ago and resorted to cutting up old t-shirts. They are actually more comfortable than the elastic! I’m sure we are all sick of making masks and gowns and caps, but as quilters we cannot say no to those in need and so… here is 101!


My mind has turned to mush during these crazy times and I feel like my quilting has suffered. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this subject. If you have been in production, what was “your” breaking point?

 Simply leave me a comment on or before October 10 for a chance to win a little surprise package. This includes my overseas friends as well, just realize that if you win, it may take a bit longer to reach you.

 I will number each response and choose a winner by drawing a number out of a mask!

Wednesday, September 30, 2020

September Monthly Mini

September is a busy month in the boatyard. It is hard to believe that we have already begun decommissioning boats to be hauled out for the winter. There are still a few who, like me, realize that September offers some of the best cruising of the year. I just love watching boats sail in through the gut just before sunset. 

This month’s (very simple) mini, “September Sunset” reminds me of the wonderful colors on the horizon this time of year.

 Further your quilting horizons by visiting my fellow mini makers (alphabetically):

Quilting Babcia (Amity Quilter)

Randy (Barrister’s Block)

Cathy (Big Lake Quilter)

Vicki (From the Button Box)

Barb (Fun with Barb)

Julie (Julie K Quilts)

Kathy (Kathy’s Quilts)

Sandy (My Material Creations)

Barbara (Quilts, Gravestones and Elusive Ancestors)

Janet (Rogue Quilts)

Kyle (Timeless Reflections)

Cynthia (Wabi-Sabi Quilts)