• 05Dec

    A good friend of my sister’s lost her husband a few years ago.  She still had three of his Hawaiian shirts in her closet, and when she saw a quilt made out of old shirts, she knew she wanted to use the Hawaiian shirts for quilts for her three children.  Since she’s not a quilter, Sally put the SOS out to me.  The timing was perfect, as we were going to a retreat at The Wild Rose.

    Sally brought along the shirts and I started unstitching them.


    It was really a bigger job than I thought, but I wanted to make the most of the fabric.  I ended up cutting the shirts into 4-1/2″ squares.  I divided them in thirds and put one stack up on the design wall to balance out the colors.


    I wanted the quilts to be similar, but still different, and I wanted the prints to be the “stars” of the show.  So I decided I would use solids and set the blocks together with sashing and cornerstones.



    It’s a very simple setting, but I think it served its purpose.





    I finished them off with a simple stipple.


    Each shirt had a pocket, so I stitched one to the back of each quilt.


    I was pleased with the way they turned out.


    I’m sure the kids will treasure them.



    If you want the fabric requirements to make one of your own, they’re below.  This is also a great way to show off fussy cut, novelty prints or even photo transfer blocks.

    Hawaiian Shirt Quilt


    1 Hawaiian shirt (I got enough squares from each shirt to do one quilt, but I mixed them up for interest)

    7/8 yard cornerstones and inner border fabric

    2-1/4 yards sashing and outer border

    4 yards backing

    From the Hawaiian shirts cut 80) 4-1/2″ squares

    From the cornerstone/inner border fabric, cut 10) 2-1/2″ strips.  Cut four strips into 2-1/2″ squares for cornerstones. Use remaining squares for inner border.

    From the sashing/outer border fabric cut 18) 2-1/2″ strips; crosscut into 142) 4-1/2″ x 2-1/2″ rectangles for the sashing.  Then cut 7) 4-1/2″ strips for the border

    Cut the backing into two equal pieces.

    I pulled the backing around to the front of the quilts and machine stitched for the binding.





  • 26Nov
    Categories: Everything! Comments Off on A Tasty Thanksgiving

    We had a wonderful Thanksgiving yesterday.  The best part is being with family and friends, but the food wasn’t bad, either!

    The table was set…

    I splurged on new linens this year.

    The dough for the Parker House rolls was smooth and silky.

    My goal is always to have the rolls come out of the oven just as we sit down to eat, and I managed the time just right.

    The turkey was a beauty.

    22 pounds!

    My mom brought a pumpkin pie.  I baked an apple but it was camera shy!

    And Melinda brought a cherry pie.

    Doesn’t everyone have an orange gingham tablecloth for fall!?!

  • 15Oct
    Categories: Everything!, musings, quilting, travels here Comments Off on Quiltopia – Part 2

    Our next stop was a tour of the Bush House, featuring red and green quilts from 1840 – 1860.

    Again, considering it’s October, the grounds were lovely.

    Mr. Bush, I presume!

    This house had the most elegant wall papers.

    Many of them had fantastic, coordinating borders.

    And there was truly a treasure trove of oil paintings.

    Our guide was a hoot, tailoring the tour to our interests.  Here he demonstrates the player organ.

    Another beautiful painting.  I especially love the seascapes.

    And this old map of Salem is pretty cool.

    Check out this hot water bottle in it’s holder.  The “bottle” is made from copper.  I have a holder like this that’s embroidered ‘hot water’ but I never knew the insert would have been copper.

    Near the kitchen was a different style of painting.

    What a great stove.  I’m sure some grand meals were prepared on it.

    The punched tin pie safe is pretty neat, too.

    Kitchen weren’t “public” places in Victorian homes, so no reason to have doors on the cupboards.

    Even though this kitchen light fixture is plain, it still has an elegant grace.  I think it may have originally been a gas fixture.

    This mug is so similar to an ABC plate that my mom has.

    Of course every historic home had a hole where they buried trash….

    ….and today people love to dig through them to see what they can find.

    The good china was in the butler’s pantry.

    Very pretty.

    Another beautiful oil painting.

    Mr. Bush again.  I was in love with this frame.  It was made by someone locally.

    It was the pinecones that sucked me in.

    Ah, finally, the quilts!  This Arkansas Lily was hanging on the banister upstairs.  Often times in the old red and green quilts, the green will have faded to a soft tan.

    This light fixture was a combination of gas and electricity.  People just weren’t sure that new-fangled electricity was going to catch on!

    A gorgeous medallion quilt with eagles.

    Again, you can see that the green dye was fugitive.  But remember, these quilts are 150 – 170 years old!

    I don’t think ladies of the day carried as much stuff in their purses as we do!

    This quilt is in pristine condition.

    I hope you can see the beautiful quilting on it.

    Of course a lady always had hand work at the ready.  Idles hands are the devils workshop, after all!

    Another beautiful Lilly quilt.

    I love the scalloped border.

    Here’s an interesting piece.

    This Palm quilt was stunning.

    I love how the border anchored everything.

    One of the bedrooms had this gorgeous wallpaper border.

    I believe this is a variation of the Whig Rose pattern.

    The fan quilting is amazing.

    And I love the pitcher, or urn, appliques.

    One last oil painting to share with you.

    This Pomegranate quilt also uses a popular color from the 1840′s—cheddar.

    Again, this quilt looked like it was brand new.

    This Mariner’s Star is quite spectacular.

    The floral border is unusual on a quilt like this.

    Oops!  Someone left out their underwear box!

    Part 3 still to come–photos from the quilt show!

  • 13Oct
    Categories: Everything!, travels here Comments Off on Quiltopia – Part 1

    Connie, Robin and I were on the road again recently, this time to Salem, Oregon for Quiltopia, a weekend quilting event there.

    This was a perfect day for me because it combined all my favorite things—good friends, vintage quilts, old houses and high tea!  We started at Deepwood Estate.

    The grounds were gorgeous.

    I couldn’t believe there was so much blooming so late in the year.

    We were ushered into the Carriage House for a lecture before tea.

    Our speaker, Vickie Simpson, was even dressed in period clothing for her presentation.

    She gave a good talk about the history of quilting and had some lovely Dresden Plate quilts displayed.  This one had an ice cream cone border on three sides.

    I’m familiar with this pattern as Fancy Dresden Plate since it has ellipses in the center and pointed pieces at the four compass points.

    The Dresden Plate below is button hole stitched in place and has a bubble gum pink sashing.  It’s a simpler block and has a simpler variation of the ice cream cone border.

    Here’s a pretty variation where every other blade (almost) is consistent.

    I like the different pinks here.  And notice that since she had an odd number of blades, two solids ended up side by side.

    Here’s an orphan block.

    She also brought this satin crib quilt that her grandmother had made for her.

    Then, we were take to the big house.

    It’s a gorgeous old Victorian.

    The tables were beautifully set.

    I loved the pink sugar cubes!

    Connie and me, waiting for our first course!

    Connie and Robin.

    Between courses we were treated to more vintage quilts, like this Snow White one.

    Our first course was heirloom tomato soup and a cheese scone.  Delicious.

    I always love seeing Sunbonnet Sue in her many forms.

    And I was delighted to see this fabric with the four suits of cards on it!

    Oh, our main course!  We had puff pastry filled with mushrooms, quiche and a deviled ham sandwich.  Once again, delicious!

    This quilt had Sunbonnet Sue and several different butterfly patterns…

    …and a terrific looking “tablecloth” print on the back.

    Dessert was a spiced cake roll.  Did I mention, the food was delicious!?!

    A traditional butterfly quilt.

    Then it was time to tour the house.  The mantle was lovely.

    I’ve seen lots of delicate hot chocolate sets, but never one with a matching china tray.

    There were quilts displayed around the house, like this one on the bannister.

    Oh, my.  Imagine having a waist that size?

    A pretty Trip Around the World.

    The yellow china on this table was so pretty, and looked so great displayed against the yellow fan quilt.

    The ivy wallpaper was very nice.

    And I loved this green light fixture.

    This light makes a really cool pattern on the ceiling!

    Ah, I could happily sleep under this Irish Chain quilt and let someone bring me some scones in bed in the morning.

    I have this very same pillow!

    Doll quilts are always charming.

    This cactus basket is very pretty.

    As is this Grandmother’s Flower Garden.  I love how the hexagons have been fussy cut.

    I covet this doll bed!

    Now that’s a vintage sewing machine!

    There’s more Quiltopia to come!

  • 29Sep
    Categories: brilliant ideas, travels here Comments Off on Seattle Road Trip

    The MG’s is a four person quilt guild–at least we joke that we are.  Our members are Robin, Connie, Monica and me.  From time to time we take a road trip.  A week and a half ago, we went to Seattle–minus Monica, who had to cancel at the last minute.  We started out by going to a Mariner’s game, courtesy of my parents, who are season ticket holders.

    Tickets in the Diamond Club–in the third row–are hard to beat!  It had rained HARD in the morning, but by game time, the roof was open and the sun was out.  My sister, Sally, did a “stand-in” for Monica.  We even saw a (rare) win!

    After the game we had time to visit Pike Place Market.

    Lucky for us–and them–Undercover Quilts was still open.  We all did a little damage.

    We had a quiet evening in my mom and dad’s condo.  Well, quiet, unless you consider constant chatter noisy!  The next morning it was back to the Market for breakfast a Lowell’s.  My dungeness, avocado and tomato omelet was amazing!

    The flowers, both inside and outside the Market, were beautiful.

    I’d have fresh flowers everyday if I lived there.

    Outside, the tops of the buildings are lined with flowers, too.

    Outside things were a bit of a mess because of construction going on.

    But someone had a sense of humor, and I just had to take a picture of these “construction workers.”

    Oh, and this one, too!

    I had been wanting to visit Sarah at Fabric Crush, so that was our first stop Monday morning.  Her shop in Wallingford is so wonderful.  It’s in an old schoolhouse and has the most incredible windows.

    Imagine my delight when I discovered Trophy Cupcakes was in the same building!  It had been at least a half hour since breakfast, so we treated ourselves.

    Then we were off to the Quilt Loft in Ballard.

    Then it was time to head south and toward home.  We had a lunch in Des Moines (yes, there’s a Des Moines in Washington) and then visited Carriage Country quilt shop there.

    All in all, a great road trip!

  • 29Jul
    Categories: Everything!, travels here Comments Off on Through Someone Else’s Eyes

    I live in a charming beach town called Long Beach, Washington. Long Beach is on a Peninsula that is 28 miles long and 2 miles wide–just a little finger of land.  But, it’s a beautiful and diverse place.  Of course, I see it everyday.  Actually, lots of times I don’t see it, if you know what I mean.  But last weekend, an acquaintance was here with her husband.  They were celebrating their anniversary.  Virginia sent me photos that she took of the area, and it’s incredible to see “my hometown” through someone else’s eyes!

    This is our photographer, Virginia, inside the trunk of a very large tree!

    The three bodies of water surrounding the Long Beach Peninsula are the Pacific Ocean, the Columbia River and Willapa Bay. The southern most end of the Peninsula is attached to the mainland.

    The bar, where the Columbia River empties into the Pacific Ocean is very treacherous.  North Head Light House guards the entrance from the north.

    ‘Cause you sure don’t want to run aground on these rocks!

    Cape Disappointment Light House guards the river side.

    Great name, Cape Disappointment.  Named by English Sea Captain John Meares.  He was looking for the Columbia River, decided this wasn’t it (even though it was), named the headlands and sailed off!

    On the hike up to Cape D, you pass Dean Man’s Cove.

    Baker Bay is a sheltered harbor.

    It’s home to the Ilwaco fishing fleet.  This is salmon country.  Notice the fog just burning off.

    Where there’s salmon fishing, there are also canneries.  I can’t believe how charming Virginia’s pictures make it all look!

    This statue is of a California Condor.  It’s based on a description in the Lewis and Clark journals describing the “large buzzard” they saw feeding on a whale carcass.

    Jim and Virginia had dinner at one of the port restaurants and snapped this nighttime picture.

    The only high areas of the Peninsula are in Ilwaco–and they provide some great views.

    This is looking south.

    We have lots of conifer trees.

    And lots of trees covered with lichen.

    The English ivy may be pretty, but it’s a non-native, invasive weed!

    Ah, the beach.

    I really should go down there!

    As you can see, we’re not in a very crowded area!


    Some gulls.  I’ve been seeing these lately, and they’re not the usual California seagulls.

    Some chainsaw art along the dune trail.

    Here’s our common California gull.

    Eeew!  I haven’t seen a jelly fish for a long time!

    Low tide.

    Early sunset.  While the rest of the nation has been sweltering this summer, we’ve pretty much been under a permanent fog bank with temps in the 50′s and 60′s.

    Beach cottages.  We have a lot of grass covered dunes between the houses and the ocean here.

    Weathered cedar shingles are the norm around here.

    It’s such a great beach look.

    It’s peak bloom time right now for the wild roses.

    I love how something so ordinary can be so beautiful.

    Sea captain?

    Daisies are also at their peak right now.

    And don’t you love the saturated color of these hydrangeas?

    The wild foxgloves are almost finished blooming.

    At the north end of the Peninsula is the village of Oysterville, the first settlement here.

    At the local cemetery.

    The historic Oysterville church.

    Oystering is still big business on Willapa Bay.

    Good advice!

    Thanks, Virginia.  It’s so nice to see all the wonderful things in my own backyard through someone else’s lens.

  • 07Jun
    Categories: brilliant ideas, Everything!, fabric design Comments Off on Quilt Market

    A belated Quilt Market post.  Why? Because I spent the week after Market in Iowa!  Yes, IOWA!  And I loved it.  But more about that in an upcoming post–or two.

    The day before Market starts is a crazy day of classes and presentation called Schoolhouse.  I presented two Schoolhouses, one for Fabric Shop Network on a program I’ve written called Stash Pot Pie.  The other was for Timeless Treasures, who manufactures my fabric designs.  My friend, Karen Montgomery, also designs for Timeless.  Her  presentation was right before mine.  We both showed up in the hallway a little early, only to discover we had dressed alike!

    My new Dear Dorothy fabrics and quilt looked great in the Timeless Treasures booth.  It’s so fun to see my name up there–almost as much fun as seeing it on the selvage!  The quilt is a free to download pattern on my website, and, of course, kits are available!  The dresses are from patterns by Izzy and Ivy.

    I also discovered some of my toile fabrics used by the talented designers from Beach Garden Quilts.

    There was a new exhibitor there, Chitter Chatter Designs.  Mom’s the designer, but her daughter and her mother were both there helping her.

    This was my favorite new booth, Hemma Designs.

    I don’t know what I liked best–the fact the “Hemma” is Swedish for “At Home” or their fresh, new designs.

    Make new friends, but keep the old…….

    Here I am with Jill Mead, editor of Quilts and More, Elizabeth Stumbo graphic designer for Quilt Sampler, Linzee MacRaePam Viera and Monica.  Hmm, I wonder what’s afoot?

    You probably already know that my sista friend, Monica, had her first fabric line debut at this market–Holiday Happy.

    Her Gnome-A-Claus is so adorable!

    I know someone who’d love a green sewing table!

    And in the quilt exhibit area, was this quilt, entitled Remembering Sweden by Helena Sheffer.  If you’ve ever been to Stockholm’s Old Town, you’d recognize it immediately.

    And, oh, I even had dinner in Hell’s Kitchen!

  • 06Jun
    Categories: Everything!, travels here Comments Off on Fun With The Mariners

    My mom and dad recently invited a group to a suite for a Mariner’s game.

    It was great fun watching the game, even though we lost in extra innings.

    The food was great, and so was the company.

    I even wore a coat!

    Bob loves the girls, you know!

    I love it when the grounds crew performs while doing their job!

    We had a visit from the Moose!

    Even the big kids liked him!

  • 31Oct
    Categories: brilliant ideas, Everything! Comments Off on Chez Monica

    When Sally, Kathleen and Kasi were here last weekend, we took a trip to Chez Monica.  It is a quilter’s paradise.  You could be in there for hours just soaking up mental image after mental image because everywhere you look there’s something to feed your soul.  Photos will never do it justice, but here are a few snaps to share for your enjoyment.

    P.S. I’ve added more photos to the weekend post, courtesy of Kasi, so even if you’ve read it, you may want to go back.  Her photos are amazing!

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  • 29Oct
    Categories: Everything! Comments Off on Kasi, Kathleen and Sally Continued

    We still had Sunday left, and, as promised, we started it off with a bit of a sleep in.  That was followed by Orange Rolls and Quiche–and I forgot to take pictures!

    But, can you believe they’d been here two days and we hadn’t even walked across the lawn to the Quilt Studio?  I’m sorry they never got to visit Anna Lena’s, but this was the next best thing.

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    They were quite impressed by the rick rack holder Bob had built!

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    Kasi wanted to finish her wonderful Owl Quilt, so I gave her a quick lesson in stippling and off she went!

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    Didn’t it turn out fantastic!?!

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    Kasi intends for it to be a floor quilt.  Some of the squares are Minky–so it will really be tactile for the baby.

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    While Kasi was quilting, Kathleen was busy trying on my aprons.  Here’s the Saucy Circle Apron.

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    And the Lilly Apron made with my Butterfly fabric.

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    This one’s reversible, so she had to model both sides.

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    Kasi had seen my Garden Trellis quilt in Studio post, and had to bring the first quilt she ever made–a Garden Trellis quilt!  She made it for her mom many years ago.  It was easier to pin hers up than to take mine down!

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    Since she had only stitched in the ditch when she made it, we decided to put it on the long arm and quilt some flowers in it.

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    Won’t her mom be surprised!

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    Here’s Kasi getting a binding lesson.  I wish I had a photo of what Sally was doing during this time–she was Swiffering the floor!  Not that it needed it, of course!

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    Don’t you love Kasi’s embroidered jeans?  Melissa, this one’s for you!

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    We had a great late lunch at Full Circle Cafe in Ocean Park,then drove through historic Oysterville. The old church there is so charming.

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    And here’s one of my favorite houses.

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    It was all over too soon,but, let’s check Kasi’s list and see how we did.

    Kasi’s list.

    Tour a cranberry bog ?
    Visit the beach ?
    Meet Monica ?
    Meditate in that fabulous craft space ?
    Meet Poppy (now Lola)  Oh no, poor Lola!
    Tour the little Swedish cabin ?
    Sleep in ?
    Stay up late ?
    Drink wine – well, I think Lemon Drops count! ?
    Eat yummy fun food at fun yummy restaurants ?
    Shop all/any cute little stores in downtown Long Beach ?

    Well, I guess it’s best to leave something undone–that way there can be a next time!