I’ve been trying to clean my sewing, er craft, room*. It’s a giant disaster. I ran across this quilt I designed and made for an advanced paper piecing class at my local quilt shop. I hope to get that class back on the schedule early next spring.

I really love this quilt and it was great fun to make! It is square, and does lie flat even though it looks a little wonky in the photo. It’s been folded up for a while and I was too lazy to press it.


I also managed to get Q man’s quilt out of my sewing, er, craft room and basted! Whoo-hoo! I spent a little over an hour on my kitchen floor yesterday basting and  had just enough time to get it finished while both kids napped.  I have an assortment of perle cotton thread ready to go – some variegated, some solid-  so I can start quilting it. I need to start working on a different project anyhow and see nothing wrong with working on three hand quilted pieces. It’s been so  darn cold here that I might just finish one or two of them before spring.

* We now have a craft room. This room was once solely dedicated to my sewing adventures then husband decided he wanted some space to build model ships. I lost a third of my space but do enjoy it when I have company in our small room. We can contain our messes here and close the door so no one will see.


I love Oriental fabrics. I mean really, really love them and I make a lot of quilts with Oriental fabrics. So when I was at market in fall 2009 and four months pregnant with Quinn I didn’t feel badly when I dropped a chunk of change on some indigo fabrics. I knew I wouldn’t be back to any market for a good while and I’d been eyeing the fabrics for ages. Seriously, like for three or four years at. every. market.

Now I can’t figure out what to do with them. I pulled the fat quarters down the other day – I think I have something like fifty- and it just escapes me. I’ve doodled and googled for inspiration but no luck yet. I’m baffled.

Because I promised to write more about my design process I thought I’d post this as my starting point.  I’d like to get further than this, though.

Hopefully soon.

Miss D

Judith DeRitter, or Ms. D as we called her, was the house mother for my sorority when I was in college. I loved Ms. D and visited with her daily. I always enjoyed our chats and her endless wisdom. I think she passed away a few years ago and I wish I had a chance to tell her how important to me she was during that time in my life. I can only hope she knew. Elizabeth and I were sorority sisters. The newest addition to her family, Daisy or Miss D as I’ve been referring to her, was born in October on what would have been her great-grandmother’s 100th birthday. Pretty cool that I get to have two special Miss D’s in my lifetime.

A year and a half ago I made a quilt for Elizabeth’s son when he was born. I had very little time to put the quilt together so I used Atkinson Designs Yellow Brick Road pattern. It’s quick, easy, and above all, looks really great when it’s finished. I also like that you can incorporate more than the suggested number of fabrics for variety.  Since I’m not one for always following the rules that worked out well for me.

Fast forward a few months (10 or so, but we aren’t counting) and Elizabeth found out she was having a girl.  She chose a great palate for Miss D’s room. Pink and green. But sophisticated with black and white ticking so she could grow into it. Elizabeth asked me to incorporate the fabrics she was using in the nursery. Together the fabrics looked great for the room but to make a quilt I needed at least one piece of fabric that incorporated ALL those colors. Alas, an afternoon digging through my stash and a quick trip to my favorite quilt shop and I had a quilt.  At least the parts for a quilt. I found a great Oriental fabric that incorporated all the colors in the fabrics Elizabeth had given me and a few others so the quilt would really sing. And sing it does! I love this quilt! Seriously. It’s going to be painful for me to give it away. But I can visit with it from time to time, I suppose. lol.

I made the top and put on the border but it needed something. So I ripped out the border (where would I be without my seam ripper?) and put in the small ticking inner border. I sort of had no choice but to do it that way. I hadn’t ordered enough fabric for the back and I really didn’t want to go back to the quilt shop to buy more fabric for the border. It turns out that the small black and white ticking accent was perfect! It’s subtle but really adds just the right amount of zip! I used the ticking for the bias binding, too. It’s nice to carry that pattern out to the edges of the quilt, though sewing the ticking down through the minkee, especially in the corners, was a bit of a challenge.

I normally don’t back quilts with minkee but Elizabeth had me put minkee on the back of the quilt for Elliot and  we wanted to keep an even playing field since children can be so darn particular. Minkee really is nice on the back of quilts for kids since it’s so soft and lovable. Plus I found the perfect minkee – lime green with darker green dots. I couldn’t resist! Because I had minkee on the back of the quilt I chose to tie it, and since I’d tied Elliot’s quilt….

I tied the center of the quilt with pink perle cotton. Then I ran out! Argh! So I tied the outside border with white perle cotton. I tied in the center of each white chrysanthemum so it’s a little less obvious. Necessity really is the mother of all creativity!


I hope Elizabeth and Daisy like the finished product!



Little Girls, Big Style

My friend Mary wrote a book. It’s called Little Girls, Big Style. The book was just published by Stash books and I can’t wait to get my copy!  I’ll get mine Saturday at her book signing at my favorite local quilt shop. If you are in the Atlanta area you can get a signed copy, too. Mary will be there from 11-2. There will be food and drink, samples, demos and general merriment.

She’s also doing a blog tour. Mary worked really hard on her book and I know it’s going to be a huge hit!

I love that I can call this incredibly talented woman my friend. You’ll love her, too!


I gave birth to Q Man 6 weeks before my friend gave birth to her daughter, Miss A. Of course, I made a quilt for Miss A. Well, technically I’m still making it. I gave it to my friend at her shower. In February.  I took the unfinished top back from my friend the other day (Indian giver!) so I could attempt to get it finished before her daughter goes to college. Seriously. It’s taking forever but time is an extremely limited commodity right now.

Little Mister quickly grabbed the quilt from the bag. He ran around with it like he was wearing a cape. It was pretty darn cute.

Then he got bored

And I snapped a few detail shots while the gettin’ was good!

Not the greatest photo, but you get the idea – wrinkled corners and all.

Since I have been trying to talk about the process here’s where it all started. My friend has some wallie art in her daughter’s room. It was the inspiration for the baby quilt. Here it is*:

So the wall art was the starting point. Once I decided to make a tree I needed it on a background. I didn’t want to put the tree on a solid piece of fabric. I wanted more depth. I have a friend that (I think) makes some really cool quilts. I love how she pieces her backgrounds and they were the inspiration for the background of Miss A’s quilt. I drew the tree (several iterations, really) and all the other parts** on newsprint before copying and pasting them onto the background.

Yellow seemed like the obvious choice to me.  Miss A’s room is brightly colored and I wanted the reds, pinks, greens and blues to show up against the background. No pink overload.  I used Steam a Seam Lite to fuse everything. I just love how you can get all your parts to stick to the background and move them a little, too, before deciding on the final placement and ironing them down. I’m pretty pleased with how the quilt looks so far. Just need to add a few things – like the bottom border!

* yes, I took the photo from the website. Going into baby A’s room to snap a photo of a tree decal while juggling four or five schedules is a feat nearly impossible

** thank you Pottery Barn for having such great and easy modern forms in your repertoire that I could use for inspiration for the butterfly and owl. The wren, well, that was all me.


I like to make gifts. It’s fun, WAY more personal and often much less expensive. Okay, well sort of. If you factor in time it’s more expensive, but hey! a one of a kind gift is priceless.

I always peruse catalogs, brochures, etc. to find inspiration. I tear out anything that catches my eye and put it into my inspiration book. The book is full of clothing ideas, quilt ideas, helpful hints, photos I like – you name it. When I need a gift idea or “inspiration” (yeah, really creative name for the book, huh?) I flip through my book(s) to find it. Sometimes I just need some eye candy and I find staring at George Clooney, Patrick Dempsey and the other McHotties brings a smile to my face.  I digress.

There is one particular kids clothing line that I just love and I recently hosted a trunk show at my house. The clothes are absolutely adorable and make perfect gifts.  Many of the items they offer are easy for me to copy – can you say hello adorable appliqued  shirt? Yeah,  that’s a good thing since along with all the cuteness comes the hefty price tag.

Little mister has several girlfriends with upcoming birthdays. Sooo, I had to make this girls scarf.  I loaded up the kids this morning and we went to my favorite quilt shop.  I let little mister pick out the fabrics. He did pretty well. Patty Young’s knits – bright, fun colors. I was sort of surprised, and pleased, with what he chose.

Here’s what I managed to make during nap time today. It took about 30 minutes to cut out all the parts and assemble. Cute, easy, quick – fabulous!

detail of the ruffled edge

Baby Quilt

It must be rough to be the second child. Little Mister’s baby quilt was completely finished for his big arrival. Q man’s quilt has been pieced. The back has been pieced. And I’ve not gotten any further.

It’s not that I don’t want it finished. I do. But even finding time just to baste the darn thing has been next to impossible.

I know that I’ll have a few hours to myself a few days a week starting tomorrow. And I’m so glad.

Really. Really. Glad.

One of my first goals is to get Q man’s quilt basted. My second goal is to get some shirts made for Little Mister. My third goal is – oh, who am I kidding? I should get through one and two first, right?

Here’s a sneak peak.


A friend of mine gave me some adorable burp cloths when I had Q man in March. I absolutely LOVE them and use them all the time! She bought them at a boutique shop just north of town. I quickly realized that burp cloths like these would make perfect gifts. They are super easy to make and I have a lot of friends having babies right now.

To make them buy a pack of white burp cloths (or colored or patterned if you want). Embroider child’s name about 4″ above the bottom of the burp cloth. I kept the name centered on the thickest part of the burp cloth – actually, my Mom did since her machine does embroidery. Thanks, Mom!

Next, make a pocket and insert the bottom of the burp cloth in it. I chose to have a 3″ high fabric border, leaving a few inches between the bottom of the name and the top of the fabric border.

Stitch down close to the top. I used a 1/8″ seam.

I like to give these as a set of two. It makes a nice presentation and it’s something you always need when there is a baby in the house.

Folded and bundled with a ribbon makes the perfect presentation!

Beautiful words

Last fall a lovely woman asked me to make a quilt for her daughter for Christmas. Her daughter had recently gone off to college and she wanted to make her high school t shirts into a quilt. I was happy to make it for her, and I love making t shirt quilts. She picked up the quilt a few days before Christmas. She promised me she’d email and let me know what her daughter thought and send  a photo.  As promised she sent such a kind email I thought I’d share it.

Here it is:

Happy New Year, Patty!  I bet you thought I forgot to send this!  I have
been trying since Christmas to get the quilt, my camera, and L with
her hair combed all in one place to take this picture!
Patty, she absolutely LOVES it – she was blown away when she opened it and
realized what it was – then the more she looked, the more amazed she was at
the work you put into the quilt.  Every time we look at it we talk about how
intricately the pieces fit together and the color combinations, and each
time we find some new piece we hadn’t noticed before.

Your work is fabulous, amazing, incredible – more than I ever imagined!  You
should be so proud to put these works out into the world – please know that
this one is loved and will be loved for many, many years.   I am driving
L back to Illinois this weekend and the quilt will be going with her –
all her friends agree it is the best gift ever!

I hope you don’t mind if I give your name out – know you’ll be busy with the
new baby in March, but please keep me in your email list if you ever have
any shows or contests – I will be there rooting for you!

Good luck, and many, many thanks – D

25 hours in a Day

I need more time in my days. I’m pretty darn efficient, and focus on the task at hand, but I always have more I wish I could have accomplished by the end of the day.  I am grateful that little mister still naps for two to three hours a day and goes to school two days a week.  That’s handy and allows me an opportunity to do my chores buutttt…..

I’ve been wanting to post some new photos up here for, oh, I don’t know, eight months?  Seriously. It hasn’t been a priority. So now I’m home, and I’m sick and little mister is with his grandmother. Seems like a fine time to work. Maybe.

I need to add photos of my newer quilts, but found some of these while going through all my files.

I made this quilt for little mister when he was born. It sits on the end of his bed. He doesn’t use it a lot, which makes me sad, but maybe one day.


This was the 2008 paper pieced block of the month at Intown Quilters. Original design.


My friend  emailed frantically one day. She was a month or two away from having her son and the person that was going to make her a baby quilt fell through. Of course, I couldn’t tell her that I wouldn’t help. So she sent me some swatches and the cool giraffe minkee for the back of the quilt and Voila! I bought some cotton prints that coordinated with what she sent me and magically a quilt appeared.


This quilt is the 2009 Block of the Month at Intown Quilters. Original design.


Dresses I made for little mister’s best girl



This quilt is a masterpiece! It’s Jacqueline de Jonge’s pattern Be Colourful. It took several months for me to piece, and I had Regina Carter to the quilting. She did a superb job! I love this quilt and am proud that it was accepted into the East Cobb Quilt Show this fall. It’s a judged and juried show. Wish me luck!


And last but not least, I designed this quilt and it was published on the cover of Better Homes and Garden Quilt Sampler. The shop was a feature shop in spring 2007 – just before little mister was born, though the quilt was made the previous autumn.