A Sunday Morning Musing

Bill Volkening has guest blog post on Why Quilts Matter: History, Art, & Politics. I really enjoy chatting with Bill, and have had the privilege of connecting Bill with Generation Q Magazine. His love for quilting, and his collection of quilts inspire me. Bill is, in a very unique way, preserving and furthering our quilt history.
As I watch the quilting community I see a couple of things happening that I’ll express in the phrase, “the more things change, the more they stay the same.” Working towards some of that change is an essential component; we know though that the ocean creates sand one wave at a time. Change happens slowly, over time.

By the time I found and joined the Pelham Quilters, I’d been quilting for about 9 years. These ladies welcomed me with open arms my age was never an issue. I can walk in today and experience the same welcome. These ladies helped form me in my quilting inspiring me to try new things, make good quilts and grow as a quilter. They helped me to understand that quilting is as individual as the person. Not every one has to do the same thing to be a quilter. Each quilter had the opportunity to teach, share, and do their own thing. What more could you want from a guild? Being accepted for being different is a beautiful thing. Thank you!

Alex Anderson still learning, and teaching!

After this “upbringing” there is a sense of heartache when I hear that a quilter is dismissed for their youth, particularly when they clearly know their stuff. These quilters have a lot to offer our community, they bring different sensibilities that inspire, keep us on our toes, keep our own work fresh, and give us something to think about. These quilters see things from thread and fabric, to batting and style a bit differently. This only ADDS to our collective knowledge and experience of quilt making.

Valori grew up with a quilter and is actively feeding her quilterly soul to share that creative energy with us

As “older” and “experienced” quilters we welcome them to the community, lead by example, and help grow them. I can’t tell you how grateful I am to the quilters who have made me feel welcome. The quilters who are willing to share their experience as quilt makers and teachers and competitors. The quilters who I can go to still for advice. Some of these quilters that I go to haven’t been quilting as long as me, nor are they as old as me. No matter how long I’ve been quilting, no matter how old I am, there is still more to learn.

We all have something to offer the quilting community. Thank you for adding to my quilting world.

Happy Quilting!



Goin’ Batty

In the middle of August an invitation went out from Alex Anderson to a group of people to try, and test the new Quilters Select Batting by Floriani, I emailed Alex, the batting arrived a few days later. Needing a bit of a mental break at the end of the day, and longing to explore the depths of the B 790. There are 2 different battings the first a cotton, the second a poly/cotton blend. The adhesive is activated in a 2 step process, the first is a sneeze of water and the second, a heat setting. I like the spritzer on my bottles of Flatter, it’s a fine mist…which is perfect as it will not overly wet the batting. I’ll let you inhale the lovely scent of Yuzu and Fig. I will be getting more of this.

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cotton settingThe heat setting on this is right about here, on the cotton setting. Cotton really wants a lower heat setting. Kind of learning to use the sewing machine at medium speed while quilting and piecing. It’s a simple thing that makes a huge difference in the overall product at the end. As an aside, I recently had The Quilt Show playing in the background and watched an episode with Sally Collins, I’ve long admired her and now long to take one of her classes. Details are important, slowing down, enjoying the steps is a good thing.

Now I’ve felt and tried fusible batting before. As a general rule, I don’t use it. It’s not bad, just not my favorite. Until now. My comment to Alex, “I’d use this in a competition quilt.” I like it that much.

This makes me giddy.#perfecttension #b790 #berninausa #bernina

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I do have a couple of hints

  1. watch this video 
  2. cut the batting to the size of the quilt top and the backing a wee bit bigger. if you’re quilting a small piece you can do the whole process on the ironing board.
    And here’s a friendly reminder of the nature of cotton, it can be a bit stretchy so when layering things up, press the batting with your hands and later on with the iron.
  3. if you’re using this on a big quilt, do the spritzing on the floor or a big table, work in small sections just like using 505 Spray, then go to the ironing board
  4.  have all three layers together before going to the ironing board, the batting will stick to the ironing board
  5. when ironing, Press rather than iron.
  6. enjoy the process of quilting

Both the 100% cotton and poly/cotton quilt up beautifully

#bernina #b790 #Quilting

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So here’s the bonus!

I have one of each batting to give away! That’s right, Thank you Floriani. So, in typical Generation Q fashion answer 1 of 2 questions:

  1. if you were given a vintage Singer Featherweight, that’s in rough shape, would you have it painted up in your fave colors?
  2. what are your favorite colors, and how would you use them in a quilt block?

I’ll draw 2 names Saturday September 19th. US entrants only please.

Happy Quilting!



Lisa Calle OCQ eventI’m not usually at a loss for words related to quilting for this blog. I’m not really at a loss at the moment it’s just that the quilting world as it is in my life at this moment is refocusing and I’m slowly wending my way around the quilting world as it is for me right now. I’m starting week two with Missouri Star, which I’m loving. With new work, full-time, everything changes, including the rhythm of the quilting routine.

So the other night I posed the question on facebook, “who are the quilterati in your life?” Quilterati is a play on the word, literati, with the meaning of “well educated”, “literate”, “in the know”. Then, as the play continues, there is glitterati with a meaning of “famous, wealthy, and attractive”. I,  personally, was going for a combination of the two meaning who are the important quilt people in your life. The first time I posed the question several people said me. I thank them so very much because that means a lot.

jake laughs againPosing the question the second time yielded a richer and deeper conversation that leads me to this post. Many of the names I knew:

Kim Brunner, Jamie Wallen, Karlee Porter, Sherry Rogers-Harrison, Alex Anderson, Ricky Tims, Sue McCarty, Janet Stone, Jackie Kunkle, Marilyn Badger, Karen McTavish, Linda V. Taylor, Lizzy House, Linda M. Poole, Maddie Kertay, Joe Cunningham, Ruth McDowell, Mickey DePre, Jim Salinas, Shelia Frampton-Cooper, Jake Finch, Melissa Thompson Maher, Mary Ellen Hopkins, Gwen Marston, Doreen Speckmann, Linda Hahn, Marianne Burr, Pokey Bolton, Dee Fox Cornell, Pamela Allen, Sue Brenner, Judi Madsen, Claudia Pfeil, Claudia Myers, Lisa H Calle, Mary Wilson Kerr, Ruth Powers, Cheryl Sleboda, Lynn Krawczyk, Susan Brubaker Knapp, Victoria Findlay Wolfe, Sherry Reynolds, Stephanie Forsythe, Luke Haynes, Melanie Testa, Lisa Sipes, Alex Veronelli, Bob Purcell, Debby Brown, Barb Persing, John Kubinec, Joe Callaham, Holice Turnbow, Bruce Magidson, Diane Magidson, Hollis Chatelaine, Paula Reid, Paula Nadelstern, Judy Niemeyer, Kristin Girod Rodriquez, Lesley Riley, Frances Holiday Alford, Jean Ray Luray, Pat Barry, Angela Walters, Margaret Solomon Gunn, Judy Coates Perez, Tula Pink, Amy Butler, David Butler, Bonnie Browning, Pepper Cory, Diane Gaudynski, Sue Nichols, Pat Holly, Phillip Jacobs, Kaffe Fasset, Renee Brown Haddadin, Caryl Bryer Fallert, Laurie Tigner, Mandy Leins, Marybeth Krapil, Brenda Groelz, Jane Dunnewold, Shannon Hicks, Sarah Ann Smith, Karen K Stone, Myrna Ficken, Patrick Lose, Brandy Lee, Jessica Darling, Jo Leichte, Jeanne Cook Delpit, Gayle Schleimann, Bill Volkening, Roderick Kiracofe, Kim Niedzwicki, Michael Dunn, Karen Cunagin, Bert Klimas, Renee Fleuranges-Valdes, Mary Anne Ciccotelli, Anne Frascarelli, Donna Chambers, Sandra Parrott, Barbara Brackman, Pat Campbell, Tracy Mooney, Jamie Mueller, Denise DeSantis, Melissa Kanovsky, Scott Hansen, Bev Mabry, Susan Schrott, Elizabeth Rosenberg, Nancy Rosenberger, Sally Bramald, Jane Monk, Kela Weathers, Chana Charles, Rob Appell, Jenny Doan, Donna Thomas, Christa Watson, my sweetie. . . .

Debby HandiQuilter Teri BERNINAOkay so this list…it’s just a beginning. I’m not even sure I grabbed all the names listed on the fb post. Part of the point is to take a moment and recognize the people in our life who have influenced our quilting world in some way.

One of the things I see is the breadth of the quilting world right there spanning the quilting world, it’s inclusive of all types of quilting, and those in the “business” of quilting from fabric designers to editors and the “behind the scenes” people. This list includes people who aren’t in the business directly but still support and encourage.

And who are the quilterati in your life?

I’m off to work here shortly, have a great! quilterly day.




A seam ripper is a quilters best friend

Who knew the proper way to use a seam ripper? I sure didn’t. Pam Damour, the Decorating Diva and BERNINA Ambassador shows proper technique and at the same time shows how to splice cording for home decorating projects. I’d always wondered how that happened and now get why there is that need for at least 1/8th yard extra when purchasing cording is essential, allowing for a really good, full join. The Aha! moment was priceless, I think you could read it right across my face. Thanks Pam for sharing this.

I’ve always loved my BERNINA seam ripper because it’s sharp and has a really fine tip. I’m loving my Alex Anderson 4-n-1 Essential Tool even more. It’s the same BERNINA seam ripper, a stiletto, pressing tool and pointer all in one. I like it even more because it’s a good feel in the hand. Being wood it’s kind of earthy.
To me as a quilter it’s important to have a good seam ripper for taking out machine quilting or wonky seams. It’s the eraser of the quilting/sewing world and a quilters best friend.


Getting up at 3:30 in the morning sometimes has its advantages and disadvantages. Advantage: watching to episodes of The Quilt Show: one with Hollis Chatelain (1207) and the most recent one with Jeanie Sumrall-Ajero (1504). Hollis’s episode confirmed that I’d love to take a class with her somewhere, some day to see how she quilts. Jeanie’s episode just inspires me in part because I love Kaleidoscope Kreator 3 and all that can be done with it, and in part because I can see some changes in my own quilting across her quilts. While getting up at 3:30 is not my time of choice there’s a bonus: I’m inspired. And I can see a bit more clearly yesterdays quilt coming into focus. I have 3 quilts ready to baste. But first, off to work.

Have a great day,


I’ll be in Philly August 16th

Quilt Basket Rendezvous for Steves sew and vacI’m teaching at Steve’s Sew & Vac Saturday August 16th.

I’m teaching a variation of Alex Anderson’s Quilt Basket Rendezvous.

The fun thing is Alex will be in the night before giving a talk at the shop. I wish I could be there for that however working on Friday at Hartsdale and the timing is just a bit off.

There are just a few spaces left in the class, so if you’re not doing anything next Saturday I’d love to see you in Philly!


Oh and here’s a bit of fun.

Happy Quilting!


Teaching gig!

piecing basket<—- This pile turned into

basket quilt for shop

the quilt top to the right. It’s based on Alex Anderson’s Quilt Basket Rendezvous . I need to add the basket handle but need to get a couple of things before I do it. I have plans quilters! I have plans.  I’ll be teaching at Steve’s Sew & Vac on Saturday August 16th. Alex will be there the night before and I’m teaching an Alex inspired quilt on Saturday.  Woot! Woot! I hope there will be a little sparkle and shine for me to bask in 🙂

this is a gentle, loving reminder of why we press and don’t iron our fabric and quilt tops – This will quilt out however it looks funny right now and can’t spend another minute on it until I get back from Minnesota.

I have class prep to do before I leave, blogs and meetings and a whole lot of binding to do. It’s a long story on the binding and I can tell you more in August I think. In the mean time: press on dear quilters, press on.