Monday, September 29, 2014

Around the World Blog Hop

I was recently asked by my friend, Donna Liljegren of Brynwood Needleworks (, to take part in an Around the World Blog Hop. I thought it looked like fun, and agreed to participate. The caveat was that I had to pass the hop along to three fellow bloggers to keep it going. Hmmmm, not many takers. In fact, only one of my bloggy peeps would take on the task. I am going to add the links to their blogs or websites anyway, since I love their writing and photos and I am sure you will, too
The sole participant from everyone I asked is Jane Weston of Sew Create It!. You can see her quilting, crafting, travel photos and descriptions at I wish I could just pack up and fly to some of the lovely places she tours! It is always interesting to see what quilters in other countries are up to.

Some of the blogs I follow that are wonderful to look at and read are :
Fifteen minutes of Play (
Bonjour Quilts (
Celtic Thistle Stitches ( ( who would have done this, but is traveling in France...drool, drool)
Exuberant Color ( ( if you have time, see this blog! What a color genius!!)

Well, on to the five questions I need to answer to be a good steward of the hop!

1. What am I working on? 
Oh gosh, that's a toughie! You may not know it, but we are in the process of moving to Blairsville, Georgia. So what I am mainly working on are customer quilts! They all have to be finished before we leave here, and I am doing my best to accomplish just that.

All of my fabric is being held captive in these boxes! In Georgia!!

Of course, it would be a dull existence if I wasn't doing some sewing and quilting of my own, too.
 I put together some blocks from a class I took ten years ago, and now, just have to do the quilting. I found the blocks while packing my studio (yes, all of my fabric is packed!!) and added them to the projects to work with during the period between one house and the other.

Zoom in on the houses and see what fun I must have had making them. I barely remember that day...

I have also been finishing up a quilt to give to my guild for an auction they promised a quilt to. I made this at a recent retreat and thought it would fit the bill for an auction quilt. Just a fun project to pass the time with friends.

all quilted, just needs binding

swirly quilting

swirly backing
The other thing I have been working on for what seems like forever, is a paper pieced wall hanging that came from a strange place in my brain. Karen Stone designed the block, but I have used it to portray waves coming in on the beach. I plan to add some little applique shorebirds from a photo I took at the beach.  Here is what I have so far:
This is my 'roadmap' of what the beach and waves should look like
Pitiful, ain't it? I have a long way to go...especially before adding birds!
That segues right into the next question:

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?
My really fun quilts are ones that use some piecing as the foundation ,or background, for either appliqued figures, animals or foliage. I enjoy photography and have a huge number of pictures I hope to someday translate into quilts. The ideas come to me usually while trying to go to sleep at night, or when driving in the car. I jot down a sketch of what it is and then go from there trying to figure out how to make a quilt out of the idea. It isn't very formal, as far as art is concerned, so I always have a hard time trying to figure out what category they belong in when entered in  show! 
Here is an example; I wanted to make a quilt using photos of roseate spoonbills I had photographed here in Florida. I made an applique pattern using an overhead projector and a drawing on acetate tracing the photo. I number all the pieces, then trace the pieces onto freezer paper . I then cut out all the numbered freezer paper pieces and dig around in my stash for fabric to use for each particular piece, iron the freezer paper to the fabric and cut pout the piece. I put the pieces together on the master drawing, then turn their edges and applique them together into whatever figure I'm working on. The applique is a free standing piece, ready to be applied to the background. I used a jelly roll to make the pieced background, then added the elements on top. The babies nest is tubes of batik fabric manipulated to make sticks, and the leaves are freehand cut from pieces of fabric fused together then sewn on randomly.
The whole process differs from other people's work in that I take forever being fussy, where it should be a streamlined process. A lot of the techniques I use are taken from books or classes I've taken, then made my own. Hey, works for me!

Putting the completed pieces on the 'roadmap' drawings

the pieces may not fit exactly after they have been appliqued together, but that's okay

Batik background, tubular fabric sticks, 3-D leaves and a hidden lizard surprise!

Background with detail of one of the wings, showing all the individually appliqued feathers

Babies in the nest

The finished quilt
Question three:

3. Why do I write/ create what I do?
Heck, I don't know...I create quilts because something in me makes me do it. I can't stop, nor do I want to. Designing, sewing and quilting the project is a Zen experience for me. I can spend hours on a piece and not even know I've wiled away an entire day. It makes a mess, but it is MY mess, and I love it! Most of my show pieces start out as something quite different from what they turn into during the assembly process. My quilts are an evolving representation of who I am and what I happen to be thinking about at the time. I saw a famous quilt teacher I had taken a color class from at the Houston show. We chatted and she asked if I had done anything with the knowledge I gained from her class. Pulling out the iPhone, I proudly showed her a quilt I made using her rules of dynamic color combination and she said," You should take off the dancing pineapples, they ruin the whole quilt!" I was flabberghasted and deflated. I had spent weeks making the pineapple blocks and when I got them together, I thought the quilt was kind of blah. I doodled around a bit and thought,"what if the pineapples had escaped from the farmer and were running amok all over the pineapple quilt? Cool!"... That's how the idea came, and it is exactly what I did. She hated it, but I love it and it makes me smile still.

Penny Piper Picked a Peck of Perky Pineapples

bckground block

one of the 'dancing' pineapples
I write down what I am doing for people who aren't in my proximal sphere any more. I love to tell them what's up at Wazoo, but phoning everyone would take hours away from work! I don't always know if anybody reads my babbling or not, and that doesn't bother me at all. I share my little world with whomever may get a kick out of what I am doing. That's all. No deep meaning in it; it's quilting.

Last question (Whew!)

4. How does my writing/ creating process work?
I simply write what is on my mind at the moment. No fancy ritual or thought process. I love to write and this is a creative outlet for my thoughts. Kind of a public diary. 
I hope you like my work and seeing what is going on at Wazoo. I really do live in the fun world of quilting.
Now, hop on over to Sew Create It ( and see what Jane is up to!

1 comment:

  1. Your quilts are beautiful. Hope you and your stash are reunited soon! I am also participating opinion this blog hop. Fun to meet some new to me quilters.


Feel free to leave a comment. I enjoy hearing what you think about my blog.