Elastic Substitutions for Masks


If blog posts had a subtitle (as novels do), this one would have gone up under “Maskmaker, Maskmaker, make me a mask…”, but that might be more of a testament to what I’ve been listening to on my playlist than anything else. In truth, I’ve been working on the ‘mask project’ along with many many people. Who knew that sewists have finally become the Cool Kids…

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Making us Laugh – Sweet Dreams

Sweet Dreams for a Quilter

Welcome to my stop on the Making us Laugh Blog Hop, where today I am bringing some fun funky fabrics to give a new spin to an old project. Add a little technology to it, and it’s a good time to have some fun! Many thanks, once again to Joan Kawano of Moosestachequilting for coming up with the idea, centered around National Quilting Day this past weekend. As an added bonus, this project will give you plenty of chances to play with the fabric stash you’ve spent years collecting, maybe looking at it in different ways.

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Welcome to the Making us Laugh Blog Hop

Making Us Laugh Blog Hop

OK, I’m calling my friend Joan of Moosestash Quilting a visionary on this one. Joan is a fellow Island Batik Ambassador Alumni, and she has put out an idea about a blog hop this month to celebrate National Quilting Day on March 21st, which is Saturday. Joan’s theme was to make a project to encourage us to laugh, but oh, my goodness…talk about perfect timing.

For this one, count me as one of a number of the Quilt Quazy Queens…there are a LOT of us who signed up, so you’re likely to find some fun projects to try.. We’ve even got an ‘official’ Instagram Hashtag that we’re using, #dailygigglefest. And you can always use #nationalquiltingday2020 as well.

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Conquering Fears at a Retreat…

From the Fearless files…

I always think of a retreat as an chance to immerse myself in my creative side, which admittedly doesn’t get the chance to come out and play as often as I’d like. I was away at my annual 4 days weekend last month, and I embraced that idea wholeheartedly. Although I overpacked (to a comical degree), I really only worked on one project…my Dream Big Panel. It’s done, and handing in it’s place of honor in my sewing room. It looks good if you apply the galloping horse at 20 feet test to it…and I do. I can see every flaw, every oops, everything that I will work on and improve. Maybe you’ll eventually see my next panel…but this one is one for me.

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How I learned to love Flying Geese units again

6 modern flying geese units
6 geese make one block here

One of the first quilts I ever made was a hand pieced Christmas quilt which had a flying goose border. It was an early attempt, and I remember thinking that I never wanted to make another Flying goose block as long as i lived. I know that in speaking with many quilters, this block can evoke this sentiment with many.

I’m going to share one of my best secrets for making this block, one that doesn’t require a 45 degree angle. I found this technique via Pinterest one night, and what caught my eye in the photo was the appearance of the block – you had much more visible sky. It was also the first time I’d seen this block with 2 different sky fabrics…I found this a game changer.

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Organization Envy…

Strip overflow

This will be a short post this week, but every once in a while you come across someone who has a figured out a better way to organize something. I call that effect Organization Envy, and this time it came in the form of a blog post by Debby Brown, a very prolific scrap quilter. It came in the form of a Facebook post, where she had very neatly organized a tub of jelly roll strips Very neat and tidy, much as Debbie is. Have I mentioned that she’s prolific?

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Connecting to an old skill…Meet the Goddess…

Most of the time. my creative energies go into quilting, but I recently started a project in another medium that takes me back to my creative roots, so to speak. The first creative skill I ever learned, when I was a young girl, was embroidery. I had put it aside for many years in favor of quilting, until I met The Goddess. Literally, I felt as if something was pulling me towards her when I saw her.

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My hacked planner – 2020 edition

It seems as if December is when my thoughts turn to the next year’s plans – and that includes planners.  I’ve had a lot of different variations through the last several years, and frankly – some worked better than others. What follows here is a picture heavy show case of how I have hacked my planner for this year…and why, for me, this is a perfect solution. Finally.

My 2020 planner – cork cover

So as a starting point, I keep my online calendar using google calendar. It’s very easy to sync between my phone, my tablet and my laptop. GC operates in a vertical format, so I knew that this was what I wanted my 2020 planner to have. it’s just easier. And my cardinal rule is that the easier a planner is to use, the more I will use it. In my case, this means keeping things simple.

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Welcome to 2020 – the year of Fearless

If SPARK brought me far along on my evolution in thinking, then there should, in theory be some relationship between last year’s word, and this one. And given that this year’s word came to me in a Chinese fortune cookie – of all things! – I have to believe that’s true. There’s a component of the Law of Attraction at work here, and I do believe in it.

Fearless fortune cookie
Conquer your fears. Otherwise, your fears will conquer you

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New Traditions this Year – Stockings

So welcome to the last post of 2019. I hope this New Years finds you celebrating the year that was, and anticipating the year that will be. I’m having a very Circle of Life moment now, and part of that is this holiday season saw many of my holiday traditions reinvented in new ways – which is what, in my opinion, traditions are best at.

My original stocking

I was given a Christmas stocking when I was born, and its the same pattern that was used to make the ones that were given to my cousins and my sister. I had one grandmother who was very skilled and talented with her yarn work, and so it always seemed natural that the Nana made the stockings.

When I married Mike, he didn’t come from any such tradition – his stocking was literally a clean one from his Dad’s dresser. At the time that we were married, all I could find were Bucilla kits with sequins and felt, and that’s what we had when we were a family of four for many years. I still can’t knit anything.

By the time that we began to get daughters-in-law, I had become a quilter, and I discovered that they make stocking patterns. All the stockings I have made have come from Eleanor Burns book, Christmas Quilts and Crafts. I have gotten more mileage from that book than any other book in my library.

So, now that I am the Nana, Eleanor and I made more stockings – a sort of continuing the tradition. In my case, each of the stockings is quite unique…and fits (as best as I can tell) the kids personalities.

Had’s tree trimmed with buttons

Had is my only granddaughter, and her stocking came from a pieced strip set which just happened to fit the template for the stocking perfectly. A green stocking! I used my Cricut Maker to cut the tree and the lettering on her name, and trimmed the tree with white buttons – this was when she was just beginning to be fascinated with the buttons. The stocking isn’t quilted, but it is lined, and durable.

Colby’s Gingerbread men

Colby’s stocking was easy to come up with a pattern for. I’ve never met a little boy who loves to wear plaid like his dad – and his papa – as much as this kid, and this one is going to be a foodie for sure. Just like his dad. The gingerbread men got a little puffy paint icing on top, but like Had’s…this one is strong

Henry’s learning about Santa

This year brought new additions, and as I mentioned above, new traditions. We held our celebration at the home of my son and my daughter-in-law. This was their season, and with three littles, it makes a lot of sense. I had asked them about continuing to do the stockings, and they said that in our family, we can continue to do Papa and Nana stockings. I remember being the one who inherited Christmas so many years ago, and I always knew that there would come a time when it would pass. This was the year.

Wesley’s Rudolph stocking – check out the nose

So I set off for the scrap box (if you remember the post from a couple of weeks ago, when I learned just how much Christmas fabric I didn’t know I had – that was because this project was going on in the background. And I didn’t want to post pictures until the kids had seen them. Henry is 11 months, and Wesley is just over 6 – so they don’t as yet have much of an understanding about what this is about. But the scrap box didn’t let me down – they are separate, but similar.

I do believe that I’m at the end of the stocking run, but it’s been a lot of fun. Of course, I can always make more.