Saturday, October 30, 2010

special moments

So here at STITCHES sister and I are having a great time.
This is her first stitches, but of course I am a veteran.

Last night was the fashion show and all went well... 8 females and 1 male...120 garments and full commentary. We finished in 90 minutes thanks to my stellar back stage crew...Debbi, Gwen, Beth, Cindy, Sarah, Betsy, Fiona, Fiona, Edie, Myra, Kelli,  Jeannie and Ginger.

Today I start with an interview with Debbie MacComber, and a small photo shoot. Then onto a noon-time presentation on issue
100. Tonight is the student banquet...then drinks (champaign) with Debbie.
You see,i did a knit scarf for her latest movie in her new yarn. It was a promo for both off us, and now we need to celebrate.
instead we went dancing in the hotel bar, had a great time too. I hadn't danced like that in over 10 years and Julie (my coworker of the same vintage) was familiar to dancing like we did in the 70's and 80's.

Ended the night with a frank but passionate business discussion...then off to bed at 3:30.  

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A milestone

So today knitter's went virtual....our fall issue is free on You can see my designs on pages 54, 84, 122, 126,176, 196. We have had a great time getting it all together.
You cannot imagine how much work it has involved from so many people, as we redesigned the whole thing....more later as I am posting from my droid


Monday, October 25, 2010


When I was in college I took an art class. It taught me very little other than I didn't have a vision as my professor thought I should. And formal training was not for me.

The one thing he did instill in me was to practice in small doses
I had to create and work out compositions in little 1-inch squares. A page full of squares, and each inch was a composition.

We had to fill at least a page a week, which was about 100 squares a week, we were monitored each week, then graded at the end of every 3 or 4weeks. It taught me to look around and force myself to look for compositions.

Quite a few people do the picture a day, or something similar...I am now trying to do that with my quilting...I want to create original pieces.

busy weekend

It was a busy, but somewhat relaxing weekend  here at CASA RICO. I am preparing to go to Stitches, tomorrow, but had to sew instead of pack.. I took a small bag of scraps from Sue's Crazy Curve quilt and started piecing them together. I  followed very little  logic or plan for the beginning of the piecing, just wanted to create pieces that had enough  area to work into something.I made some strip blocks and then slashed and reassembled them, played with skinny piecing, and just had fun. The result was a real shocker, after probably 6 hours of work/play, I arrived at a bunch of mini blocks ( less than 15 inches square). I  really like them. I am thinking I may combine some of them together. Others will  stand alone to become a mug rug, small framed piece, or maybe a focus spot in a larger design. Who knows??

The second picture is a black and white fabric that I colored with marvy fabric markers. I am in a swap where we make something for our target partner's sewing area. this is like a Secret Santa swap where you do not know who is making your gift until it arrives. I am making something special for my partner, and think that I will start with the sewing machine version of this fabric, i may over-dye some of it for the  background, then
color in some of the machines. stay tuned, this all will happen after I return from Stitches.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Purple today

Many of us are wearing purple today to mourn the recent suicides of 6 young men who could no longer deal with bullying for being gay. My heart goes out to the families who are feeling the loss, but even more to those still suffering through the ignorance of others. 

I wonder why each of those youngsters did not feel that there was someone to help them; they just needed someone to talk them off their ledge. They needed to know that everyone has awkward moments and feelings of inadequacy, and bullies resort to torment and ridicule to mask theirs.  

We failed these boys.

I find it a true shame that we still allow it in our society. Why don't we teach compassion? Why can't we all figure out that hate is a waste of energy and emotion? Sadly, bullying is something we do not outgrow, and the Internet has made it easy to be a bully behind a mask. 

I am sure you each could tell a story of not fitting in. Anyone who has never felt awkward or different; I congratulate you, even though I doubt you exist. The rest of us still have the opportunity struggle, overcome.... or give up. 

Whatever the case...
                              NEVER GIVE UP! 
                                                         Tomorrow might be better or worse, but at least you will know.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

New Beginnings

After a hectic weekend getting the magazine finished, it is gone to the printer....and a new week of insanity begins.
 We are so proud of this endeavor. it is a double size issue with over 50 garments in it. I have a few designs in there...seems having to knit like a mad-man for 3 weeks burns one out. I haven't touched knitting for more than a month other than testing a stitch, pattern, or swatch. Personal knitting time has been non existent. Sad but true.

I am now working on a million other projects, and most demanding will be commentary for  Stitches East Fashion Show in Hartford in 9 days. ARRRGGGHH!  I have to pick models today. It is a huge job but quite rewarding. Building 120 outfits to go with knits from our market show takes an assistant  2 days to complete with my help and nagging. 

I am especially excited to go this year as my sister, Lynette, is joining me. She is a quilter and not a knitter, but might become one when surrounded with over 1200 other crazy students. [[ We still  plan to have a little time to go to a quilt store.]]

My sister is coming to Hartford also because she wants to meet Debbie MacComber, who will be our guest at Stitches sister is a big fan of hers...
need i say more... 
it will be fun to let my sister and her have a few personal moments together, [[I remember meeting Robert Redford back in 1977, I was so starstruck]] sure my sister will do fine. 

I met Debbie over 2 years ago and we clicked, I admire her and her work, and she seems to be a fan of mine as well. 

While in  Hartford we plan to a quilt store or two joining me will be  my friend Ginger, Sue, Lynette....anyone know where we should go for a great quilty experience?

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Saturday at the fabric store

My best pal, Sue, and I spent the day at Heirloom Creations working on a new quilt. We took a class from the Layer 'em Up book. We are doing the cover quilt.  I chose black and whites and she of course picked rusts and greens for her son and daughter-in-law...I love her corduroy looking fabrics.

As I was picking fabrics I saw the new arrival of  Fresh Mixers fabrics from Jan Mullen from Stargazey, I bought a fat quarter of each. Love her wacky wonky approach to quilting.

We also met a couple of cool people in class, and we tried to see what class we all wanted to get together in next. I have a feeling HC is going to be a regular Saturday stop for us.
My evening should be full of stitching...I do have 2 quilts for my new great niece born last month, and the one due next month...the tops are done, i just need to sandwich them and start the quilting process.

Friday, October 15, 2010

i am having FUN

Here is one of my latest experiments, maybe too many patterns but i do like the result. once i get to the craft store it will become a pillow, to join its companion piece.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

the whole quilting thing

I have sewn for many years, but am known in the knitting world.

I have been sewing clothing for years, when I worked at a nightclub; my days were spent creating clothes to wear at work that night. I loved those days. Then after the club days, I had a professional foray in designing and piecework for fiber artists (weavers and silk painters) for about 7 years.  Sewing is not foreign to me. I have made over 500 garments in my career (for myself and for pay); so I know sewing, but when it comes to quilting…

My Grandma Emma was a quilter. She would piece on the machine, and then quilt by hand. She taught me how to hand quilt. 

Being a lefty, I always was going the wrong direction, until she figured out that I could sit across from her or around the corned of the quilt frame and we could cover common ground.

I recall helping her with a quilt to celebrate the Bicentennial (which happened to also be Colorado's Centennial). We made an Irish Chain quilt in Red, White, and Blue and gave it to the Church for their Bazaar. It was a beautiful piece and I have no idea who won it in the raffle. 

I hadn’t really done much else in quilting but maybe a couple of Seminole jackets, but they weren’t really quilted.

I caught the bug a few years back…
I discovered the Stargazey patterns by Australian designer,
Jan Mullen, while purchasing fabric for a skirt for a photo shoot. The pattern was on clearance and just too cool and “wonky” to pass up. I knew I woulfd enjoy making a wonky quilt. I actually bought 4 of those patterns. Came home and made blocks for a wall quilt that weekend. It still is unfinished but very beautiful in pieces.

I know what I like and I like the freedom of playing with fabric with very few parameters. This worked. I went on and created a block of my own and made a wall quilt for my office.

When working on editing a book a year ago, after lo…oo…ong days at the office I would go home and need to decompress. Knitting was not the vehicle for that. I would sit at the machine and sew for an hour and forget all the k, p yo, dec, inc that had me stressed at work.

I began piecing quilts.

I joked with the author that I became a quilter thanks to her knitting book…and it kind of is the truth. Now I find myself interested in fabrics, with the yarn and needles waiting for work inspiration and responsibilities. 

And now I have discovered the whole Flickr quilting bee community!
I am in trouble, in 7 months I have joined 4 bees and one swap and am having the time of my life, making new pals.
Do not get me wrong…
I will always be a knitter, and plan to finally get my book published, but quilting is a new challenge and diversion, and I want to share.

wouldja believe...

I have decided to enter this virtual world and share a bit more of the happenings in my life.  It will be focused round my hobbies and work environment...sometimes dull and other times exciting.

Just for the sake of everyone involved.... comments are welcome.  Be nice; otherwise off it comes.