Friday, December 1, 2023


 We made it to the end of the 2023 Block of the Month quilt for The Quilt Show! Let's talk about how you might want to quilt it.

Here are a few photos of Sarah Fielke's quilt, showing some of the quilting. It was custom longarm quilted by Australian quilter Kat Jones:

I sold my top to Alex Anderson. She will have it longarm quilted and I will be eager to see how it is finished. 

If I were quilting this quilt myself, here is how I would do it, using the Bernina Q20 sit down longarm. First, I stitch in the ditch along the lines of construction. 

Top to bottom first: 

Left to Right next:

This stabilizes the quilt, allows the removal of lots of pins, and gives areas for free motion quilting around the applique motifs. This step is done with a Line Tamer Ruler, my go-to for all straight line quilting.

I use a fine thread for this step, either Quilters Select 80 wt or Microquilter by Superior 100 wt thread, in a color that blends with the background. On this quilt I would use light gray. Bobbin thread is Bottom Line by Superior in a color that blends with the backing fabric.

If I wanted the free motion quilting to show, I would use a thicker thread for the decorative quilting. My favorites are So Fine 50 wt by Superior, Quilter's Select 60 wt., or Glide if I want some shine. Thread color is the most important factor for me as I don't want my stitching to show, I'm just not that good at it. 

This is essentially how I quilted Garden Party Down Under, the 2022 Block of the Month quilt. See my detailed blog post about quilting that one here: Quilting Garden Party Down Under

I have written MANY BLOGS about machine quilting and Ruler Work. Use the SEARCH box on the left above, the orange B space. Type in Ruler Work or Free Motion Quilting to find them. 

This quilt can be quilted edge to edge if you don't want to do or pay for Custom machine quilting. Look what good friend Margo did with her Homeward Bound. Simple is sometimes perfect:

Here are more images I took from the photos posted on our Forum: MONTH 12 -- Show Your Completed Top Here!:


Patricia B:

I LOVE this pieced back made from "orphan" blocks--it hides everything

It will be fun, interesting and educational to see how everyone quilts this quilt. Please post it on the FORUM when you are done. And we will  be watching for photos of these quilts hanging in Shows with RIBBONS on them, it is sure to happen.

PLEASE ADD A LABEL TO YOUR QUILT! Yes, I am shouting. It is so important. It tells the who, what, why, where, and when of the quilt. Be sure to add the name of the pattern and designer, Homeward Bound by Sarah Fielke. And the name of the quilter if you didn't do the quilting. Find my blog about making labels here:  LABELS-- don't leave home without one

And the last, most important reminder: NOW is the time to save/download all the patterns if you haven't started or any you haven't gotten to yet. After December 31, 2023 all rights return to the designer and no one can give those to you. It is easy to download them all HERE: HOMEWARD BOUND PATTERNS.

If you are not yet a STAR MEMBER of The Quilt Show, now is a great time to join. For $49 for one year you can get ALL of HOMEWARD BOUND and will be ready for PICK A PETAL beginning January 1, 2024:

You also get access to over 500 Shows, all 15 years of The Quilt Show, and everything that comes with being a Star Member--including a 20% coupon for one complete order in the Store. So much bang for your buck--join us in this worldwide quilting community: JOIN TODAY

Let's quilt.


Sunday, November 26, 2023


 Since returning from Houston 3 weeks ago, my studio has been a mess. I have several projects going at once, things are heaped up everywhere. So it is not a pleasant place to work. Take a look:

The Cutting Table

The Q20 flat surface perfect for dumping stuff

Ironing Station and boxes I might need for shipping sales

Rocking Chair, another dumping spot

Right side of sewing machine

Left side of sewing machine

Cozy chair/dump site

The Design wall at the moment

Before I go any farther, I must make some order from all this chaos!

Several hours later... (because I used the time to cut up all the fabric needed for 20 blocks used in Pick A Petal and design a Baby quilt)

From the doorway

Cutting Surface ready to go, Disappearing Patchwork on the Design Wall 

Two more blocks for Pick A Petal ready to sew on the left side of the machine

Ironing Station all set, no more boxes on the floor


Now I am ready to get to work. 

Pick A Petal, the 2024 FREE Block of the Month for Star Members of The Quilt Show has its' own tote, everything all together:

The Fabric Kit and optional Template Set--essential in my opinion

All together in their own tote

Another "MUST DO" Project is a baby quilt for my next grandchild. An alphabet quilt with a Winnie the Pooh back--my son loves Pooh so I bought this fabric more than 25 years ago. I dug it out today to find it is 60" wide decorator fabric, designed as panels. It will be the back and I won't be hand quilting this one:

The design I worked up in EQ8--the letters will be LOTS of colors

I will create a pieced back with these panels and Confetti will be the background fabric on the front of the quilt

Another quilt I have to get made right away is Antelope Canyon--Dit Dot Evolution.  I am teaching it locally at Southern Charm Quilting Huntsville AL March 19 and April 2, 2024. So this top is first priority:

There is one other project I am eager to make, the only fabric/pattern I bought in Houston--actually, I bought it at The Quilted Skein on my day trip to La Grange, TX. It was just so beautiful, easy, and on sale:

So there you have it.  My studio space is once again my refuge and I smile when I come in and see it looking like this. Chaos will return in time but for now, it's neat, tidy and ready to welcome me in.

Let's quilt!


Sunday, November 19, 2023


 There was so much to say about my 8 days in Houston for Quilt Market and Quilt Festival, I broke it into two posts, Find the first post here: Houston Part 1

Fall Quilt Market is a trade show, open to those with Industry credentials, that preceeds Quilt Festival. I arrived for Market so I could keep up with what is happening. First stop was the RNK booth where I could see my friend, Alex Anderson. It was a joyful reunion:

This was the only time I would have to see the quilts because once I started teaching, there wouldn't be time for the show floor. The winners are spectacular as always and you can find many photos of them online. On Instagram search for #quiltfestival to see so many images.

Best of Show, you have to see it to believe it: 

Master Artistry Award to Janet Stone for her incredible work Filigree Calligraphy:

To see all the winners and watch a few short videos with some of them go here: Festival 2023 Winners

There were many special exhibits. One of the most amazing was Honey, I Shrunk the Quilts, featuring the work of Kumiko Frydl. You cannot imagine how small these are, some less than 12" square:

Another captivating piece is this huge quilt by Helen Godden, entitled My Australia. It is 22 feet long:

I enjoyed looking for quilts that spoke to me. Here are a few:

Sue Garman pattern Afternoon Delight--makers info below 

A quilt at the top of my Bucket List, Antelope Canyon:

This one just because it pulled me in from across the room. I love asymmetrical quilts:

My Antelope Canyon will look like this and will be a local class in mid-2024:

Tuesday was a down day, Market was over, Festival opened Wednesday evening, so it was the perfect time to take a day trip to the Texas Quilt Museum in La Grange, TX. I love Texas and it is great to get out of the big city and see the countryside. The first stop was one of the Painted Churches famous in that area. The tour guide attends this church so was able to give us detailed information on its history:

The Texas Quilt Museum is well worth the visit--this was my third time there. The antiques from the Mary Koval Collection were my favorite this trip and gave me a new Bucket List quilt:

Added to the Bucket List, now to figure out what colors I want to use

The Museum Store

Next door to the museum is The Quilted Skein. There may have been a purchase. It is a beautiful shop:

We walked around town, there are lots of antique boutique shops to see. The Fayette County courthouse on the town square is beautiful. I got to spend the day with two friends who used to go on the post-show tours with me, Glennis and Donna, and we had a great day together. I was thankful for their company:

Fayette County Courthouse

Everything about this week was wonderful for me, but the BEST part is getting to see special people: Here are a few photos:
Karen K Stone early one morning before we both taught classes

My beloved friend Ricky Tims, a must find person on the Saturday we both taught

Elaine Poplin, aka Messygoat, working the Cherrywood booth. A member of my home guild, she is going places in this industry

Linda Collins from Australia, she had a new English paper piecing template for sale and it took a bit of connecting but I got them 

I regret not getting photos of some of my Education buddies from years gone by--it was so good to see them, and they know who they are. Next year we'll get those photos.

Yes, I will apply to teach next year. It is the 50th anniversary of Quilt Festival and promises to be HUGE. Red, white and blue quilts will be featured so I better get busy! 

Let's quilt.