>I was in another workshop with Margaret J. Miller in 1990. It was called Strips That Sizzle. I had seen one of this type quilt in one of her books and she was visiting my friend’s quilt shop and my friend called me to invite me to meet her. I mentioned the quilt in her book and she told me she was giving a workshop on it 2 days later in a northwest suburb of Chicago. I called them immediately and got into the workshop. This quilt is the one I started in the workshop. I had all of the blocks done by the end of the day and in the following week I tried many layouts of the blocks. Margaret had mentioned to us that she was writing a book and if we came out with a great layout to sent her pictures. I sent this one and said I had another in the works. Below is the back of the quilt.
The one below is the second one I made. I sent her a picture of it and they were both accepted into the book. I sold the one below at a gallery and I really miss it. You can see I was into purple and yellow a long time ago. The book was published in 1992.
I taught classes from the book for many years and then it was out of print. I heard at one time that it was the most asked for quilt book that was out of print. The reason I heard that they didn’t reprint it right away is because it had too many color pictures and was too expensive. Several years later they finally did reprint it. I went on to make lots of quilts with this wonderful technique.
>Back in 1994 Melody Johnson was going to give her first crazy piecing class and invited me so there would be a familiar face in the crowd. She gave each of us a pack of squares of her hand dyed fabric. Since I already had a lot of scraps ready for crazy piecing I got right into it. Half of the blocks have her hand dyed fabrics in the center, the other half have the tiny cutaways pieced together for centers.
When I finished this quilt I called it “Wanda’s Quilt” so no one else could have it. The deadline was approaching for the MAQS contest for New Quilts from an Old Favorite and the theme that year was log cabin. Ann Fahl and Melody both encouraged me to enter it but I was doubtful that it would be considered a log cabin. Ann sent me a copy of the entry blank with 2 days to spare. I already had slides so I decided to go for it. However when looking for the slides I couldn’t find a detail shot. The deadline was a day a way so I mailed it with only the full view slide.
Three days later there was a message on my answering machine from a gentleman from the Museum telling me that maybe I didn’t know it but I had only sent one slide. I called him and could not lie, told him I couldn’t find the detail shot. He told me I had 5 more days to get the other slide to them. I pulled out a tote bag that night to pack for a class. I picked it up by the bottom for some reason, and out fell the detail slide without the plastic mount. I called my photographer son and he brought over a mount and the little tool to set it. I mailed the slide the next day, and the next call said I was one of the 18 finalists in this world wide contest. I renamed the quilt “Exuberance” and wrote my article for the book, and the rest is history.
>This is another wallhanging that has been published. It is in a hard covered book in 1996 from House of White Birches named “Log Cabins for Everyone”. It was one of my quilts that were published that actually had a payment for its use. They named it crazy logs and hung it diagonally on the wall. I wrote the instructions for piecing and they did a good job of illustrating it. I don’t use a foundation when I make crazy piecing. Then I can piece a chain of 4 or more blocks at a time. The flowers look so nice right after a rain. We had big storms yesterday morning. No one needed an alarm clock around here. It was one of the noisiest but only about an inch of rain.
> If you are a fan of Deanna Spingola’s Strip Pieced Watercolor, you may recognize this one from “More Strip-Pieced Watercolor Magic”. It is on page 74 and also on the back cover.
Deanna was at a guild meeting where I gave a program and saw my colorwash quilts with raw edge flowers appliqued on them. She called me the next morning to see if I would do a quilt for her upcoming book. When I met with her she requested that I add my raw edge flowers since it would be different than the others in the book.
I had just gone through a divorce a year earlier after 34 years of marriage. This was a good confidence building project for me to undertake at that time. I was able to lose myself in the creation, using her guidelines for the background and my own designs for the flowers.
I applique by machine with the quilt top in a hoop and a loose cut piece of fabric on top. I don’t use any fusible because I like little the raised effect of the fabric. I start free motion stitching like pen and ink drawing and add each piece of fabric as I am ready for it.
Here are some close up pictures of the free motion drawing by machine.
This is my self portrait made in a workshop at QSDS in 1993, taught by Jane Sassaman. It was published in “The Quilt, Beauty in Fabric and Thread” by Marie Salazar in 1997.