Farewell Block

This isn’t utterly original. I found a camel in a coloring book and copied it. I love the batik fabric, with it’s mottled variations, and I love the background fabric, which was probably an upholstery fabric (I found it in Qatar and loved it’s desert coloring).

As I stitched it, I found myself thinking how very much I love hand applique.

The friend I made it for has a soul for adventure. I travelled with her once, and learned to admire her steadfast calm, her utter sang froid, and her ability to manage people without ever once appearing bossy. We will all miss her presence, and her invaluable role-model.


Cats Are the Stars

Several years ago when I first started quilting, I designed and made a quilt for my sister, who had a collection of Laurel Burch coffee cups. Burch had just begun designing fabrics, and I found a great fabric, and had a collection of great vibrantly colored fabrics to go with it. As I see it, it is the colors that make this quilt.I had a great time making this quilt, but all photos disappeared with the box of quilt books in my last move. Yesterday, I was able to photograph it again. It has suffered a little fading from the sun, but as I look at it, it still delights my heart. 00sallysquilt.jpg The top border:00sq2.jpg    Square:00sq3.jpgAs I look at it closely, I remember all the hand quilting I used to do:00sq4.jpg 


I know my Mother wonders where I came from . . . but the truth is, she also quilted when she was my age, just not big quilts. Lots of baby quilts, lots of pillow covers.

She was never into country-style, not even French country. Danish modern, black and white all the way.

She was complaining about not having any “fat” tablemats; she doesn’t want hot coffee cups marking her beautiful wooden tables (can’t blame her!) We searched all the stores in vain – “fat” tablemats are just not in style right now.

But I can make fat tablemats!

The design process – never be without your graph paper!


The finished tablemats:


They could actually be two rows shorter – I made them very generously sized to be sure the coffee cups land on the tablemat. These are 16″ x 24″:

Christmas Frenzy

The problem with a specialty blog, like quilting, is that in order to quilt, you have to make the time! When you are in a quilting frenzy – you have less time to blog.

And I have another consideration – I don’t want people running across these photos who might be on the receiving end. I think I am just about safe, now.

For my friend I grew up with in Alaska, who now has Alzheimers, I made a set of napkins and tablemats, and an apron. We looked at this fabric together, I bought some to use for my Dad’s Alaskan Quilt; she passed, thought the fabric was too expensive. I learned a lesson – buy that fabric now! Who knows what may happen tomorrow!


She made so many sets of napkins for me, and I still have the last set.

The apron is called a “tablier” (tah- blee- ayy’).

When our son started school in Tunisia, we had a list of things to buy him, all of which I could find except this mysterious “tablier”. I thought it might be a writing tablet or board, until someone showed me an apron, identical on both front and back, that children wear when painting or doing work with glue, etc. I liked it so well – and I am so messy – that I figured out how to make it grown-up size, and have been making them for myself and friends ever since.

I even wear the tablier while quilting – keeps most of the threads on the tablier, and not on me! 😉

I hope it will remind my friend of our happier times together, growing up in Alaska.