Quilted Block of the Month August week 2

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
The congratulatory messages on my new position with Floriani are simply awe inspiring.

Now onto our regularly scheduled program:center square


Oh I do remember giving  you this update sometime during the week in Instagram. Debby was stitching this motif on a postcard, and I was inspired by it. I’m not entirely certain that Debby posted this anywhere publicly so just know that I have permission to copy her homework at any time. Cool, eh? With this project you have permission to copy my homework. If you’re playing along please feel free to send me pictures and I’ll share them here on the blog.
Remember I tend to show all the stuff that I’m not happy with because I’m still learning how to machine quilt. 2017-08-11 19.29.52

Bernina 24 foot on ruler



The free-hand embroidery foot is aboutt 1/4” from needle center to the outer edge of the foot. I chose a spot roughly in the center of the square to start stitching a circle. Once the circle closed I very slowly started curving out until the edge of the foot was on the center circle. I kept stitching around, and around, and around, and around, and around and around. Once I reached the edge the ditch helped me keep the curves consistent. Using 80 weight thread in the bobbin means that there is little thready build up, and the fabric doesn’t distort.


I’m going to show this one in a very quick vid.

This should give you an idea of how this motif is stitched out. This one looks like a wonky log cabin block, however it’s stitched from the outside in. On the quilt itself I simply winged it. In the video I used a ruler to make the lines. Going from the outside in is what helps create the visual twist.

in block stitching square 2
It’s interesting how thread looks on different color. 80 weight thread is the best!
in block stitching square 3
I like the different texture with the straight lines in the square and the ribbon candy in the border.
in block stitching square
This is the first square I stitched in. While I’ve done this before I wasn’t quite remembering the rhythm of the stitching. It came back after the first full round.

square ribbon candy

Stay tuned next week for the next installment of the Quilted Block of the Month.
Quilted Block of the Month August week one

Happy Quilting,







An invitation

cropped-live-your-brightest-life-11-e14726550775461.jpgTeaching free motion machine quilting is one of the greatest pleasures in my life. When a quilter relaxes into quilting, the breathing changes, the focus changes, the rest of the group fades from the room. There is a very distinct memory of a quilter doing just this, in the middle of a very busy shop, what a beautiful moment. The over-thinking part of us, in that moment, becomes quiet as the stitching takes place. Being in that moment is so amazing. I’ve been there, in the middle of a busy place, simply enjoying the restorative, creative energy.

20161127_074359A few years ago I started a group on facebook called Lucy’s Nickles to work with a few quilters answering questions and helping them grow. The name is from the Peanuts character Lucy, who sets up a lemonade type stand and gives advice for five cents. A few years ago I mentored a quilter for a quite a while, his quilting changed over this time. So much so that his partner asked him what happened, “it’s like the lights are on now” (this is the gist of what he said.) Often through this process I asked more questions, than gave advice.

One of the gals in the group recently asked for a directed project. I’m game, so on Friday February 3, 2017 we’re starting a whole cloth project, which I’m currently in the process of designing. Once I have the bones designed I’ll post a pdf on the site, and part two of the discussion will start. We’re going to work fat quarter size as we all have fat quarters, and it’s a nice size for something of a piece of art.


You are welcome to join us on the facebook group. Click on the link above, I’ll approve membership. Please introduce you, tell us a little about your quilting. And let’s have some fun. Along the way I’ll ask questions, offer some suggestions, and give permission for you to use your seam ripper as you choose.

Happy New Year,


I love it when my friends have exciting news – Update

and Wow! does Debby Brown have exciting news.  She has a new Craftsy Class “Free-Motion Quilting with lines, curves, and loops” The techniques Debby presents are suitable for long arm, mid-arm (like the HandiQuilter Sweet 16) and the home sewing machine.  

There is an opportunity to win a free class, sign up for Debby’s newsletter – there will be a coupon code. See Debby’s blog for details.

Congratulations Debby

Happy Quilting!



Happiest of Friday’s

talenti jar stops and starts*Note I started writing this early Friday morning and had the realization, “OhMiGosh I have to get to work” and made a mad dash to actually do that! Yes, I made it on time. No I did not finish this blog post. Surprise. The day was as busy as a bee hive. With NY City Traffic, dinner and an edit meeting with Melissa…well you can see how there was no Friday blog.

Thursday evening I met one of the gals taking my One Day Free Motion Quilting class at Hartsdale Fabrics. She’s a total newbie and by newbie I mean has never used a machine before. I can hardly wait to teach her. Yep you read that right I can hardly wait to teach her how to use the machine and how to play on said machine. I can hear the quilt police thoughts, “she’s learning quilting in the wrong way…piecing first, then machine quilting” And as I write that a Harry Chapin tune begins worming its way through my head, “Flowers are Red”.

As a quilter and a teacher I want to view quilting with fresh eyes and be inspired. I want to learn how to teach better and give my students the gift of being open to learning. I recently read a teachers bio (not sure if it’s a book review I’ve done recently or a blog so forgive the lack of a source) where she stated that she considers herself an Advanced Beginner. This gives her the freedom to continue learning, to make mistakes and be self-forgiving with them, to explore and play and have fun with her quilting. That’s inspiring! That’s giving  yourself permission, that’s saying it’s okay to make mistakes. Mistakes are the best opportunities!

Have a quilterly day,


Road to California…here I come!

at play greg caseTeaching alert!

Teaching Alert!!

I’m teaching at Road to California! (This is a dream come true!)

Wednesday Beginning Free Motion Quilting

Thursday Let Your Foot Loose, Be Fancy Free

Friday Go Mini or Go Home

Saturday Beginning Free Motion Quilting

I’m in BERNINA rooms each day!!!


Happy Quilting!


Good morning!

Mississippi sunriseIt’s not often I get to see a sunrise.
I do this morning because I’m an hour later than East Coast time.This part is so cool.
And this body of water that you see is the Mississippi.

I walked around the quilt show last night with Susan Brubaker Knapp to award our Faculty ribbons. If I have a chance today I’ll get pics of several quilts including the winners.
And the winners: Just WOW!

Today I teach beginner Free Motion Machine Quilting! This is one of my favorite classes. EVER!

Happy Quilting!


Chocolate Swirl part 2

Chocolate Swirl cross hatching I love answering questions about the quilting process.
Yesterday I was asked (on facebook) – I thought I’d share here

chocolate swirl with 24 foot
The BERNINA Free-hand Embroidery Foot known in my world as the Quilting Foot

That cross hatch (it’s kinda wonky here but this isn’t a competition piece so I’m okay with that) is simply marked on the cloth using a Generals Chalk Pencil and an Omni-Grid Ruler.
I placed the 45 degree line along the edge of the Radiance – connecting with the lower left hand corner. Then marked all of the other lines, on a 1/2″ grid, based on that first line.
When I stitched it – it’s all done free hand. I’m not using a ruler for the lines (although it might be handy) or the BERNINA Stitch Regulator to get my stitches even (although I could).
In class speeding violations are issued when a quilter races their machine.
A good medium speed gives the control to be able to get good, even stitches.
By that medium speed I mean something that’s comfortable to move the quilt under the needle. I once and often describe it as a 50’s/70’s rhythm. Kind of like our heart beat at rest.

I am going to add in extra stitching here…that will be revealed in a day or two.
Have a great day!