Monday, July 14, 2014


WOW! Time has a  way of continuing to move on even when we slow down. It's been 18 months since I was last here. So much has changed in my life. I am now a single divorced woman (which socially is about as low as you can get). I own my own home. While I was once fully retired I am back to work part-time. Most importantly I am back to crafting and quilting. Now I just need to get back to taking pictures on my camera rather than my smart phone. Either that or I need to figure out how to post to this blog from my smart phone rather than my laptop.

Right now I am mainly sewing and quilting. I still do greeting cards for people who are interested in them, but I seem to be spending most time at my sewing machine. This may be aided by the fact I am once again selling fabric and teaching quilting as well as being the president of my quilt chapter. It is also related to my having a garage full of fabric which is not necessarily a good thing in humid FL summers. (While I was renting a nice big house I had room for it all inside. No such luck in my cozy little house.) I personally don't need any more quilts myself and no one I know has expressed an interest in a quilt so most of what I do now is either a class sample or made for charity.

My quilting focus right now is using up scraps and fat quarters. So far from approximately 75 fat quarters I have made 4 lap quilts and have a 5th started.  The sad thing is using up 75 fat quarters hasn't even made a dent in what I have.  The good news is I haven't had to spend any money to do any of these quilts.

This is the first quilt I did I call Scrappy Diamonds in Rectangles.   I needed 45 different fabrics to make it. I had made this quilt once before years ago and so I relied on my memory to cut it out. NOT A GOOD THING! Consequently I cut it wrong. So I needed to round up another 30 fat quarters (I reduced the size of quilt to lap size) and re-cut it after I read the pattern. After that things went pretty well and it is a fun quilt to do. It is now a model for a class I begin teaching at work next week. The students will learn from my mistakes; I hope!

 The second quilt was a twister. I used 20 of the above fat quarters and was able to get 10" squares from them to make this quilt. It is also a lap size. I really like making that size as they are relatively easy to machine quilt myself and I can use one length of fabric for the backing rather than piecing 2 lengths to get the backing wide enough. I did need to add a half a yard of beige fabric for the boarder on this.

I haven't taken pictures of the other two quilts yet. I took the scraps left over from the fat quarters used in these two quilts as well as the left overs from my first miss cut fat quarters and cut them into 2 1/2 inch strips to make those quilts. I will get some pictures taken an post them later. Also I have re-cut the miss cut pieces and added more fabrics from the other left overs and am working on a quilt with them. SO I will end up with 5 lap size quilts from 75 fat quarters and a few 1/2 yard pieces for boarders on some of the quilts.

This has all been fun but I sure wish I could see a few empty spaces on my fabric shelves. I am on a fabric buying moratorium until I use up a lot of what I already have. Saves money  which I do need to do, but there's an awful lot of beautiful fabric out there that I must just pass by.........

Wednesday, January 23, 2013


Not much crafting going on right now.  I'm busy pricing and packing things up for a boutique I am in at our local Guild Quilt Show.  The show is this weekend.  I am looking forward to it and seeing its inside workings.  Hopefully I will make a few $'s but if not I will have future presents made and ready to go.  Next week crafting should get back on track.

Monday, January 21, 2013


Hello out there.  I am going to make a better effort at working on this crafting BLOG.  Right now crafting is a big part in my solitary life and blogging is a way I can keep track of and journalize what I do.  Its like my scrapbook of crafting. 

Right now I am working on items that hopefully I will sell at this weeks Quilters Showcase Boutique here in The Villages.  I've done well at the quilt show boutique in Maryland, but am not sure what to expect here in Florida.  For the MD boutique I would make all sorts of different cards, mainly stamped and colored ones.  I can't do that down here though since the rules of the boutique state all items must have some quilting on them, not just depictions of quilting.

Above are the cards I came up with.  I think they will meet the rules.  They are rather simple and I began with making a panel of crazy patch pieced fabric.  This I cut into star shapes which I then stitched onto a piece of card stock which I had put through my Cuttlebug using the embossing folders. Here is a close up of the star.  This not only was easy to do but I was able to use up scraps of fabric I had lying around my sewing room in putting together the crazy patch panel.  I used my Fiskar plastic templates that I have to use with my Shape Cutter.  I'm glad I didn't get rid of them when choosing what to move to FL and what to eliminate from my craft room supplies. 

I decided to keep the cards simple and just do "Thinking of You" and "Happy Birthday" cards.  I think I will go back and make some more for "Get Well" cards and then also do some with Crazy patched hearts for Valentines Day. I think they might be popular.  I could also do heart cards for Birthdays and Thinking of You.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012


This is a technique I've been playing around with; paper weaving. It uses 1/4" strips of card stock woven together to make a base for the stamped image.  Then you coat the entire top with versamark ink and then Ultra Thick Embossing Powder.  While the first layer of embossing powder is still warm and soft you put on a second layer and heat it.  This technique I think gives some interesting texture to your card fronts. 

Friday I am teaching this technique to a stamping club here in The Villages.  I am hoping to get back into doing more teaching.  Maybe eventually for some income rather than just for fun.

Sunday, December 11, 2011


I got inspired by a beginner Cricut class I took at the local scrapbook store to try my hand at using my Cricut to make the final batch of Christmas cards.  It was fun and it was easy to use.  The first card I made was actually an adaptation of a card shown in the manual that came with the Cricut cartridge Winter Woodlands.  I changed the size of the card and had to make a number of construction changes due to the card size change. It is the card on the left with the reindeer.  It was fun to do but too time consuming with all the detail gluing of the Seasons Greetings sentiment. The word "greetings" is in three pieces.  I tried using my Xyron but it left all sorts of little adhesive pieces in the narrow spaces.  So I only made a few of these and went on to try another design that would be simpler to produce.   The second card had more steps, but was actually easier. The only detailed gluing was the pine branch and it was all one piece.  I got to play with lots of toys making this card.  The Cricut cartridge used for it was Winter Frolic.  I used it for the ornament and the branch.  Then I also got to use my Cuttlebug and an embossing folder on the background of the card.  I use a folder that was made up of all different snowflakes.  I also used a Nestabilities label die to cut out the Merry Christmas sentiment. Lots of fun and the card went together quickly.  Oh...I also got to do some easy embossing. The ornament was to be cut in two pieces if you wanted a hanger of a different color than the ornament itself. I didn't want to do that becasue it meant more little detail gluing of the hanger cut over top of the ornament.  Instead I pressed the hanger portion of the ornament onto my silver ink pad and then embossed that with silver embossing powder.  They really look like metal hangers this way and it was very easy to do. 

Now I declare myself finished making Christmas cards.  I still have some writing and mailing to do but at least they are all made! 

Thursday, December 08, 2011


As promised yesterday here is a photo of the quick and easy Christmas cards I made.  I used my Cuttlebug and my new Tim Holtz Christmas embossing folder.  The card stock I used was core'dinations.  It is a cardstock that is one color on the outside and a different color on the inside, or in the core.  By using this cardstock I could add interest to a very simple card through lightly sanding the embossing which reveals the lighter core color.
Two of the cards shown here have embroidered embellishments (the snowman and a snowflake) that I salvaged from a Christmas basket liner that was being thrown away.   A third card has a dove and olive branch punched out of card stock and then covered in Dazzel Versamark ink.  I used Frost.  The final card is simple the embossed words "Seasons Greetings" colored with a glittery Gelly Roll pen.
I made a bout a dozen of these simple cards and then boredom set in. So off to design some different quick and easy cards.  This time using my Cricut and some of the Christmas themed cartridges I have.  Those are to be shown in a later post so stay tuned.  Then I think I  am done with this years Christmas card making and it will be on to other things crafty.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011


It is less than three weeks to Christmas and I am deep into making, signing, and mailing out Christmas cards. I am having more fun doing it this year than I have had in a very long time.  Last year I mailed out very few.  This year...well...suffice it to say I think I am doing my part to keep the US Postal Service out of bankruptcy! 
I had some cards left that I made in past years, and I had the few Christmas cards I made at the stamp camp several weeks ago.  I've found a scrapbooking shop here in The Villages that carries some rubber stamps its called She Scrapbooks.  I found a really cute snowman stamp when I was in there the other day and I used it to make a lot of my Christmas cards.  Being that I get easily bored I can not bring myself to make all my cards the same.  So here are three different designs I came up with using the one stamp. 

I also found a package that had 4 different Christmas embossing folders from Tim Holtz.  I used two of them on these cards.  One is the full card background on the red card with the snowman in the lacy oval die cutout which was made with a Nestability die. The other is a strip embossing of snowflakes which I than colored over using a GellyRoll glitter pen.

On all three of the cards I added a  hat (the snowman stamp is a bare headed snowman) that I had in another Christmas stamp set.  The hats were colored and cut out and then placed on the snowman's head with a Stampin' Up Dimensional.

These were all fun cards to make and I did four of each style, but they were way too time consuming to make as many as I needed.  There fore I needed a much simpler design.  Watch for it tomorrow. 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


A few weeks ago I attended a Stamp Camp here in The Villages. I've helped put on Stamp Camps before, when I was a Stampin' Up demonstrator, but this was the first I took part in as a participant.  What fun!  I made 15 cards in 3 hours!  Now that's what I call some serious stamping and card making.  There were actually 4 hours allowed for the stamp camp, but I was off schedule and got there an hour late.  No problem I got everything done. 

Most of the cards were designed to be either Birthday, Thanksgiving or Christmas cards.  I couldn't do much to adapt the Christmas cards to become the Thank You cards I needed to send out, but was able to adapt all the Thanksgiving and all but one of the Birthday cards to be what I needed. So it was a very productive day for me and time well spent.  Of course it was great fun!

The Thank You cards have all been sent out.  I hope those who received them enjoyed getting them as much as I enjoyed making them.  As for the Christmas cards I have a start on the cards I need to send out in a few weeks.  I can hardly believe it is time to send out Christmas cards. 

I very much enjoy the process of coming up with a card design, but when a large number of cards are needed in a short period of time Stamp Camps are a wonderful thing.  I look forward to attending more of them.

My next stamping event will be this Friday.  It is not a Stamp Camp, but just a time for me to take a project I want to work on and stamp and make cards with others who share in this passion.  I am hoping to spend time making more cards for Christmas at this.  They will be my own design and probably mass produced.  I have a lot of mailing to do this Christmas season!

Monday, October 31, 2011


 I finished up in the craft room today.  I needed to make a card today for a friend and so that gave me the impetus to finish it up.

The main thing I needed to work on was the ironing board which had become a gathering place for items that still needed a home.  I also had a box in the living room that needed to have a home found for its contents.  Homes were found for all and here now is a view of my sewing area.  I can't wait to do some sewing in it. I will do so before the weeks end!  Even if it is only one seam. I am so loving my new craft room.

Like I said in the beginning of this post I needed to make a card today.  One of the emails I got today told me of the death of  the husband of a friend of mine in Maryland.  I didn't have any sympathy card in my stock inventory so a card making session was in order.  I have a favorite set that I go to when I need sympathy cards.  It is Close as a Memory from Stampin' Up.  I have other stamps I use but this is my go to set when I just want to card to come.  I love it!  It probably sound a bit strange, but I think sympathy cards are about my favorite cards to make.  While making them I pray for and think a lot of the person or family I am making them for.  I find making sympathy cards more than just a creative endeavor.  It is a very personal and meaningful one.  I also love doing the flower image on watercolor paper using my Stampin' Write markers to color the stamp, then I spritz it with water using my mini mister.

I didn't want the only card I made today to be a sympathy card so I also made a Thank You card.  I have many Thank Yous to send out.  So many people were so generous with their support before I left Maryland and I do want to thank them all.  I made the first of my Thank You cards today as well.  It's fall and so I pulled out one of my favorite fall sets  Serene Sunflowers also from Stampin' Up. This card was going to a very special friend and I love the sentiment that comes with the set.  It reads: "True friends grow separately without growing apart".  I stamped this on the inside of the card. 

I used several techniques in  the making of this card.  One was thumping which I used on the center of the sunflower.  I inked up the center stamp with Close to Cocoa and then thumped the stamp with Chocolate Chip. I also added some bronze stickles to the center to give it a bit of dazzle and sparkle. The sunflower itself I inked in Mores Mustard and then using my Stampin' Write markers colored over the bases of the leaves with Bravo Burgundy and Pumpkin Pie.  I think this gave some depth to the flower.  In order to put on the stem and leave I used the masking technique. 

I was so happy to be back in the stamping and card making mode.  It's been a very long time.  I look forward to doing more soon. After all I need lots of more Thank You cards. 

Sunday, October 30, 2011


 That mess from the previous post is pretty much put together now.  I like the way it turned out and look forward to spending time in the room creating.  One frustration I have is that I've unpacked everything except for China cabinet boxe3s and I am not finding any of my 12x12 card stock and even worse I haven't found any of my nestabilities!  I can't imaging that they were left back in MD but sure don't have a clue where they are.  The card stock I can deal with, but I want my nesties!!!!!

Here are two views of the craft room.  The first was taken while standing in front of the ironing board and looking into the closet. You can see the new home of my Horizon 7700.  I can sew and then turn around and iron without too many steps.  The rotary cutting will be a different matter.  I think I will need to use the top of my stamp table for that.   I love the white storage cubes.  I think they look really nice and they really do help with keeping things organized.  I am going to label the drawers so I don;t have to keep pulling them open to see what's in them.  Label makers are wonderful things.

The second picture is of the stamping area.  Yes I know I have way too much stuff, but I plan to use it all one time or another.

First thing up is making lots of Thank You note to send to my wonderful friends up in Maryland who gave me such encouragement and a wonderful send off. 

I purposely didn't take a picture looking back at the ironing board.  It still has a pile of things on it that I know where they are going but just ran out of steam.  Tomorrow I will finish that off and take a picture of that corner of the room.  One thing I still need for this room is a waste basket.  That blue basket is a paper recycling container.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


I am into my new home in FL.  At the moment I am still working on the unpacking.  I am being challenged by having to fit what was in three rooms into one.  Well one and a small walking closet.  Fortunately for me the master bedroom has two closets so the smaller one has become a craft closet for sewing supplies, fabric and other non-paper craft items.This picture shows the side of the room that will be used for me quilting and sewing.  Not much space but I think it will work.  As I said I have to store the fabric else where.  So its in the bedroom closet. We'll see how it works but I really don't have any choice.  There's just no space in this room for it.

 This will be my stamping and scrapbooking part of the room I've had to go up and will also try and make some things accessible under the tables.  All my paper crafting items and supplies are stored in this room.  That's why there is not room for fabric. 

When I get things all in place I will take some more pictures and then I can begin creating.  It's been so long since I have had the time or desire to sew or stamp.  I can't wait to get back to it.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


I haven't been around because much is changing in my life.  In a little over two weeks I am making a major move and heading to Florida to begin a new life.  As part of that new life I plan to refocus on my creativity.  I have had nothing going on in that area of my life for many months now and I am looking forward to re-finding that part of me.  See you in October.  It may be closer to the end of the month since I will have to find things.  Hopefully that will be more fun than the packing of them has been. I'm guessing it may be like Christmas; opening all those boxes and rediscovering my toys and tools.

Wednesday, July 06, 2011


Today it's a Polka Dots and Paisley kind of day. This is another older Stampin' Up stamp set.  I say older because I stopped being a SU demonstrator in 2009  and so I know I got the set before that.  I haven't even seen a catalog since then so I have no idea whether it is a retired set or not.  Oh well.

I did not find this an easy set to work with.  I had to spend a lot of time in the Split Coast Stampers gallery of cards for this set to get some inspiration.  I did manage to  come up with 6 designs.  Today /i have here two cards where I used the flower stamp three times on each.  On this first one I used same color flowers.  Once again I used my markers to color the stamps, huffed on them and then stamped.  Unlike the past two days this time I didn't use watercolor paper but just white card stock.  I wish I could tell you what kind of card stock it is but I can't.  I have many different kinds and over time I have lost track of what is what.  The patterned paper here is another of my scraps that was found in the brimming scrap folder. The sentiment is not a SU stamp but is from a large set of stamps I got at Costco years ago.  I'm not sure of the company, but know it is an acrylic stamp. 

For the second card here I colored each flower differently.  I forgot to say that I used my stamp-a-ma-jig for the first card as well as this one to get the placement of the flowers where I wanted them.  I just love that little gizmo.  Once again I use designer paper scraps and also my scallop punch which is from SU and I love it!  The sentiment on this second card is part of the Polka Dot and Paisley set. The ovals were cut using my Cuttlebug and spellbinders oval sets. 

So that is today's post. I am so happy that I got to do some stamping last weekend.  I really need to make time to do more.  I am a much more content person when I have put rubber and ink to paper withing 24 hours or so........

Tuesday, July 05, 2011


The previous two cards had all three of the Easy Elegance flowers on them.  For this card I only used one of the floral stems.  I've been going though a major clean out of my home and part of that was sorting through organizing and, yes, even reducing my scrap  stash.  I have a file folder full to brimming with designer paper scraps. While working with this stamp set I remembered a scrap I had found of a paper that had a floral motif very similar to this stamp.  Digging through the scraps again I found it and this is the resulting card.  Once again the image was colored with my water color markers, spritzed with water and stamped onto water color paper.  I pulled out another favorite tool to distress the edges of the water color paper to give a torn appearance to the rectangular piece,  I think the jagged edges work well with the somewhat irregular appearance of the watercolor stamped image,

All in all I like the look of this card. 

Tomorrow I'm move on to my use of the Polka Dot and Paisley set.  It was a very challenging set to use.  I needed to get some major inspiration and help from the Split Coast Stamper gallery for this set.

Monday, July 04, 2011


It's been so very long, but today I actually allowed myself to take a break from all that needs to be done and made some cards.  I stamped pretty much all day, rediscovering how much I love creating cards.  I also rediscovered that I am not a neat stampers.  Hard to believe one person can create such a mess is such a short time.  BUT it was a lovely mess.

I haven't purchased any new stamps in over a year so I pulled out two of my old sets and challenged myself to use only those two sets for my days worth of creativity.  The two sets I  used were Easy Elegance and Polka Dots and Paisley. Both are Stampin' Up sets from when I was a demonstrator. 

I love using the Easy Elegance set with water color paper.  I colored the stamps with my water color markers and then spritzed them with water just before stamping onto the watercolor paper.  This stamp set has three lovely long stemmed flowers and I used them in both a portrait and a landscape arrangement with the Top Note diecuts using my cuttlebug.  I love my bug! 

If you are not familiar with the Top Note die that is from Stampin' Up it has a perforation that gives you a cutting line to follow if you want to create two layers.  I cut down the water color die cut so that it would layer over the top of the color. For both of these I stamped the flowers after cutting the shape so I could place them where I wanted them. 

More designs later.  I can't use them all on this one post becasue who knows when I have another day to stamp again for a while.......still so much that needs to be done around the house.  Right now that is number one priority

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


First, do you all know what a UFO is?  No, I don't mean a vehicle with aliens.  In the quilting world and I assume general crafting world UFO's are UnFinished Objects. I am not doing any crafting these days.  Instead I am in the midst of sorting though a house full if items and determining what to keep and what to get rid of.  I need to fo this because I will be downsizing my living space in the not to distant future.  So instead of creating I am discovering projects begun and then for a variety of reasons put aside ans forgotten.  It is not an easy thing to discover how side tracked I get.  Some things I choose to keep in hopes that one day my life will return to quilting and stamping.  Other things will be tossed or maybe I will be able to find a new home for.  There are quilters out there that like to finish stated projects.  I hate to toss things, but I know this will have to happen.UFO's can become clutter.  This is what I don't want to move.  So for the moment there will be no reports on projects.  I eagerly anticipate when I will be able to do so again.  Any one want some fabric or wooden blocks????  What was I going to do with all those blocks from stamps I didn't mount anyway? 

Saturday, March 19, 2011


Life has kept me occupied with issues other than crafting at the moment.  I do a little, but it's just not a priority at the moment.  Maybe if I could figure out how to remake it a priority life would be better.  But I did take time out to go on a wonderful trip related to quilting.  I wish the week didn't have to end, but alas it did and I'm now back to what seems to once again be mere emotional survival.  This too will end in time and I will move on to another chapter in my life.  I did want to share with you a short peak at my wonderful week.  For those who might read both my blogs please pardon the duplication.

Sunday, November 28, 2010


Thanksgiving is over which means though the calendar says it's still fall the season says its time to get ready for winter and Christmas.  Here is a new Christmas card I made last week.  The layout is quite simple, but I think it needed to be simple to highlight the background I created.

For the background I used my Cuttlebug and the snowflake embossing folder.  In order to get a nice deep embossed image I used GinaK's heavyweight (120lb) white card stock.  The debossed image became the right side of my background.  This was so I could roll the blue ink over the cardstock using my hard rubber brayer. You can't tell in the picture, but the while layer behind the snowflakes layer has the edges painted with icicles stickles to give the sparkle of new snow when the sun shines on it.  I colored the snowman and birds with my copics and added liquid applique to the hat brim and pompom.

It was a fun card to do and really not all that difficult.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010


Along with other things I have been stamping.  Several weeks ago, actually probably over a month ago but who's counting, GinaK did a video on StampTV on an emboss resist technique.  I loved it and couldn't stop playing around with it.  I used it on several different cards. This is the first I came up with.  Not too impressive here in the photo, but it really does look much brighter in real life. The embossing and then inking and the resist is easy to do. 

I wanted to try something different with it and I was using my French Script Stampin' Up background stamp for the writing in the background so for one of my next cards I used my oval nestabilities and created a mask to stamp over to get the words in an oval shape.  I then used other of the oval and scalloped oval nestabilities to finish the layout. 

I like how this technique can produce what I Think of as "clean and simple" cards without being just a stamped image.  Now I want to try it moving away from the leave motif.  I think it would work with any chunky solid stamp and I'm thinking of other backgrounds.  I think it would also work with patterned or designer papers in the background under the embossed image. 

Saturday, November 06, 2010


Hard to believe but another month has passed.  I just don't have very good control of my time it would seem. 
The good news for me is that though I have not been getting here to post craft updates I am crafting.  I'm still moving slow to accommodate the pain of the broken collarbone, but I can pretty much do everything except for machine quilt medium to large projects. 
The one thing I have been able to do with no problems at all because it only involves movement from hand to elbow is crocheting.  So I started making these necklaces.
They are 7 lengths of trellis or ladder ribbon yarn each one single crocheted and then all tied together at both ends.  My sister has been making these for over a year and had shown me how to do them last Christmas, but I never tried one till I was desperate to have something I could do.  They are very pretty and are so light that you are not even aware they are around your neck.  They are also quite easy and quick to make.  I made about 50 or 60 of them in about three weeks.  After today's craft festival at our church I have 10 left and now have ordered more of the ladder yarn.  People love them, which of course I love. 
I've set up a sub category of my Suzanne's Needle and Stamp craft business and call it Chains of Love.  I've want to do something to help others and have decided that I will donate $1 from the sale of each necklace to a local shelter for homeless women and children.  I chose the name Chains of Love since the necklaces are basically made up of only single crochet chains.  That they are so popular makes me very happy for that reason as well.
Up to now my efforts at crocheting have been pretty minimal.  I'm not very good at anything but single crocheting so these are perfect for me and I have now added yet another craft to my ever growing list of loves.

Friday, October 01, 2010


Oh my gosh it has been a long time since I have posted here.  I admit that for the past three weeks I haven't been doing much thanks to a broken collarbone, but prior to that there was no excuse except pure laziness.  For some reason taking pictures, processing them and uploading them here just became too time consuming....not sure why that is but that is all I can figure.  Since my crafting is still somewhat limited, but I can now at least operate a computer and type two handed I will dig back into the archives of this summers photos.  (I did at least take some pictures) and do some posting. 

Here are two cards I made using the same stamped image, water colored in different schemes.  I used Cuttlebugged embossed backgrounds in both as well as ribbons and brads.  Layouts for each card is similar.  Yet the cards are different.  So what I have here is almost identical elements but two different cards.  A fun exercise for me to do and also a lesson that you don't always need to reinvent the wheel to get a unique card. 

Not sure when I will get other cards done.  I have a special order I need to fill, but learned on Wednesday that card making is something that currently hurts my body to do.  Why does it seem to be an unwritten rule that what ever side you dominantly use is the side that you always injure????  Yes, being left handed it was my left collarbone I broke and my left arm that doesn't like a lot of movement.  Fortunately the special order is for a friend and I think she will understand if all 10 cards aren't delivered at once.  I can knit and crochet with better ease so will get some new things done in that arena.  So grateful I am not a one craft person or I would be a very sorry case right now!

Sunday, August 01, 2010


This isn;t really a craft posting.  I wanted to point out a new badge posted on the right.  It is for a group called BETA.  Please take time to check it out.  BETA stands for Bring End To Alzheimer. It is a new organization just started by three wonderful young people. I am proud to say I have known Leslie, the president of the organization, since she was a toddler.  She and my daughter Stephanie started in the church nursery together.  I've watched Leslie go through many stages of life as she found herself.  She is a wonderful young lady who has a heart for helping others. 

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Since it is Vacation Bible School week I am not getting to do much personal crafting.  Any craft time I have involves 105 kids from 3years old thru 6th graders,  So, in order to keep posting I am digging back to what I have been doing since spring. 

Today I am featuring stoles I made for each member of our church's confirmation class.  I have been been making these stoles since the 1990's.  I'm not actually sure when I started doing them but I know I began while Rev. Kaylor was pastor and he retired in 2000.  I'll guess it was around 1998.  I have used this design each year I have made them, but each stole is personalized with a label listing the confirmands name, the date of their confirmation, the location and the name of the minister that confirmed them.  I used to also put the name of the confirmands mentor, but we don't use mentors any longer so that line has been eliminated.  I print out the labels on my computer using pretreated muslin sheets that have been adhered to freezer paper.  The dove is appliqued and the ribbon under the dove has a pretty edge.  I try to find something with gold on it but this year I could find a ribbon with gold that I likes so I used a ribbon with embroidered roses on it.  Some years I've had to make 12 or more.  This year I think I did 8.

Monday, July 19, 2010


Yes I have found time to do some stamping.  I have even more incentive to stamp when it involves making some income and every once in a while that happens.  Unfortunately not as often as I would like, but then I am a crafter not a marketer.  A few months ago I received an e-mail from a friend of a friend who heard I made cards.  He asked if I could make wedding cards and if so would I make him several for weddings he was attending this summer.  OF COURSE!  That was my reply with a few questions on the type he was looking for.  His response was ones suitable for weddings....the rest was up to me.  OKAY!  Then I panicked....weddings are very important events, very special events and not just any greeting card would do.  Could I create something that would meet his expectations????  Well I guess I had to since I already had agreed to! 

I set to work starting to look for the  wedding set I thought I had.....oh yeah...I sold it at a yard sale because I found making wedding cards to stressful because of the importance of the day!  So first stop in making these cards was a trip to Michael's and the AC Moore....neither store had anything I liked anymore than the stamps in the set I sold.....things were not looking good....Fortunately then I had the opportunity to make a trip to BWI Airport; don't remember why or for who, but I did and this put me within a quick side trip to the only rubber stamp store I know of  in the area! (Metro DC is just not known for its interest in crafts or craft supplies I have decided.)  Fortunately they did have a couple of stamps I liked.  At this point I'm starting to think no one must like making cards for weddings because there does not seem to be a demand for wedding stamps and there for no real selection to choose from.

I purchased the two stamps I liked best and these are the three cards I came up with.  Fortunately my customer was pleased with them all.  WHEW!  Now I need to get back to using them once again and make more wedding cards.  This has been the year of weddings. I've already attended two, have two more to attend and have declined invitations to four others....I guess all those kids I have watch grow from babies to young adults are now at that age. 

Fortunately I am ready for what follows after weddings....I have lots of  welcome baby stamps.  I do hope I don't need them for a few years at least.  Though come to think of it...there were a few weddings in the past three years so maybe I do need to start planning........

Sunday, July 18, 2010


No I have not fallen off the face of the earth, though there have been days when I've wished I had.  I can't believe that it has been since April that I posted here!  In that time a lot has happened in my life and the life of family and friends around me.  There have been laughter and tears, lots of long hours working, weddings of family members and friends, funerals, even a few days off for vacation.  Through it all I have managed to get some crafting done, though never quite got here to post about the projects completed and those in progress.  I hope to do some catching up over the next few days showing some of these projects so I have a written record of them and my crafty friends don't begin to think I've become a crafting slacker...

Today I am sharing a photo of my completed quilt for my local guilds April quilt show here in Gaithersburg.  I took the picture of the quilt last week as it hung in the American Quilt Society show in Knoxville, TN.  I treated myself and my mom to a two day visit to the show.  We had a wonderful time.  I admit to having a bit of an ego.  I was amazed at the thrill I felt when I came around the corner and saw not only my quilt hanging, but also saw several women seemingly enjoying looking at it. It was a wonderful feeling of affirmation.

I feel very honored to have a quilt in this show and I feel humbled as well.  The quilts here were amazing.  I don't think even in my dreams I could ever approach the talent and skill I saw in many of them.  They were absolutely amazing and I could have looked at them for hours.  I wish I could show some of them to you.  Unfortunately I can't. Though viewers were allowed to take photos of the quilts we are not allowed to post them anywhere.  I guess due to copyright issues.  Personally, I would be thrilled to have someone want to show off my quilt, but I understand others wanting to not have that done with theirs and so I will honor this rule of the show.  So you are stuck with just seeing mine. 

I have one final photo I would like to share it is a close up of the top box on my quilt.  The name of the quilt is "Good Things Come in Boxes".  So of course I had to put something in one of my boxes.  It's hard to see this when looking straight on at the quilt, but this last picture was taken looking from the side.  The top box has a tassel hanging from the lid.  It you lift up the lid under it in the box are diamonds.  Well really crystals that are adhered to the quilt top.  You get an idea how this works in this last picture.

So there you have it. I am back to posting.  Tomorrow I will try and be back with a card or two I have made in my absence.  Though I have been mostly sewing I have done a bit of stamping and need to do more, maybe this week....we'll see.  This week is Vacation Bible School at our church and I am in charge of crafts for over 100 children.  I do have many able helpers though so hopefully even with work in the afternoon following VBS I won;t be too tired to post or to craft on my own......
So till tomorrow.......

Saturday, April 03, 2010


First I need to give a big thank you to several people who were so wonderful in responding to the loss of my camera. There are so many wonderful and giving people in my life...I am truly humbled by their generosity. First a quilting friend offered me a camera that she no longer needed and she was willing to bring it to me Monday at out quilt guild meeting. Thanks Ellen for your generous offer which I found a god send. If you read this before Monday night you will see that though the offer was gratefully received other events have recently occurred which mean that maybe someone else can benefit from your offer. Secondly, my dear daughter brought me her camera which had recently been replaced by a newer model. It cam in very handy to take pictures during a bridal shower for my new daughter-in-law and is very nice as it is a small pocket size unlike my previous camera which was more powerful, but also much larger. Finally my absolutely wonderful brother without asking simply sent me a replacement camera saying he missed my pictures. I didn't even know he knew what kind of a camera I had, but he did and he sent me the same model so I wouldn't need to spend time with a learning curve and a new camera. I am so blessed!

So as I said Ellen maybe someone else can benefit from your camera. Stephanie...I may just keep yours to carry in my purse for those unexpected photo ops. Rich, I don't have words enough to thank you and now on to my new quilt project photos.......

My first photo is a picture of the fabric I had to work with. This came from the quilt shop where I work, Capital Quilts, in Gaithersburg. The owner of the shop was a bit amazed that she not only had purchased one but two bolts of this fabric. I did have to agree that this was a rather unusual fabric for a MD quilt shop to have in stock. Maybe it would work in a quilt shop in one of our western states, but Montgomery County, MD.....not so much. She challenged me to try and do something with it and I decided to take her up on the challenge. This is the quilt I came up with. It is a quilt called Chop Suey Quilting. It is either a large wall quilt or lap quilt size at 38" x 55". I chose my fabrics with a feel for the southwest, especially with using the turquoise.

The quilt is called Chop Suey I think because the way you make it you really don't know what you are going to end up with until you are near the end of the process. Here is a close up of the center of the quilt where I think you can see the use of the Indian themed fabric better. Can you find the cut up fabric?

This was a fun quilt to make and I will hopefully be teaching a class on how to make it. I say hopefully because if no one signs up for the class obviously I won't be teaching it, but I'm not going to worry about that right now. Too many other more critical worries at this point in my life right now.

One thing I became painfully aware of while finishing this quilt is that I am not a very good machine quilter. I'd like to blame it on the fact that my sewing machine is 24 years old and not really a machine designed to be used for machine quilting like the newer ones are, but in truth I'm sure it is more operator problems. It does do a pretty good job of piecing the tops though and I really do much more enjoy the process of piecing over that of quilting.

Yes, I am a self confessed topper not a true quilter!

Saturday, March 20, 2010


I'm still creating and working away getting ready for the up coming quilt show and craft sale. Unfortunately until I make a few decisions and come up with some money that isn't already budgeted for something there will be no pictures.....(picture me with a very sad face). I just got back from a wonderfully relaxing few days at a beach. It was all I could have hoped for, and I did keep creating and working on things while there while listening to the waves crash on shore. Unfortunately on the first beach walk a rogue wave came much higher than all others and I was busily focusing on what would have been a wonderful picture of a seagull perched on a post coming out of the ocean. My friend did yell out watch out, since she was watching the waves and not the bird. A smart person probably would have stood still and just suffered wet pant legs and shoes. I on the other hand looked up saw the wave and immediately set to trying to out run it; me going backwards of course. NOT SMART! Next thing I new I was looking at the beautiful blue sky and was a very wet sandy mess. I was not hurt, but alas my camera did not fare as well.......hence no more pictures. I hope to have this figured out though soon as I can't imagine living without a camera for too long. I guess I will try to schedule a few more work hours into my day or finally get the Etsy shop up and running....oops can't do that cause I need a camera for the pictures.....I'll come up with something. Anyone have a spare few hundred $'s lying around? Well I didn't think so.......but it was worth a try......:) Now it is off to work.......

Sunday, March 14, 2010


A girl can never have too many helpers! Since I am on my own now I created myself a couple of helpers to both keep me company and help me with the many tasks that seem to be piling up around the house. There never seems to be an end to the sewing projects between getting ready for the FSQ quilt show and boutique and creating class models and projects for the quilt shop. So I created Augie....she really knows her way around the sewing machine.....well at least she thinks its a fun and comfortable place to hang out on. She does have a bit of a problem reaching the foot pedal. Oh well at least she is cute and brings a smile to my face. Another great trait of hers is she is a wonderful listener and doesn't talk back....

Lately it seems that when I am at home and not sewing I am here on the computer. There's always work to be done here: Blog entries, e-mails to read, finances to track, research to be done.....yada yada yada......oh and yes for relaxation a few moments on Facebook, Splitcoast Stampers or Stamp TV. I thought I could use some help on the computer as well. Augie was busy at the sewing machine and well she really doesn't have fingers appropriate for computer work; enter Octie. She has tentacles perfect for hitting those computer keys. Unfortunately Octie likes simply hanging out on my laptop as much as Augie likes sitting by the sewing machine.

Oh well. I guess I will just enjoy them for their cutenenss and continue working on my own. They will just have to put up with my talking to them and sharing the events of my day and plans for future projects and activity. Just having someone to talk to makes them worth their weight in gold.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


The ADD has kicked in and it was time to try a different meet Frida! Yes she is knit and yes she's a fish......

I actually started Frida last November. ADD kicked in then before she was finished and I was off on another project. I guess the snow has put me into a "finish it" mode this week. I have finished quite a few projects. All the others where sewing projects. With the Olympics on TV I have been looking for had projects that I can do in front of the TV. So Frida was finished!

For those that don't know Frida is an amigurumi fish. What, you may ask, is an amigurumi???
Amigurumi is the Japanese art of knitting or crocheting small stuffed animals and anthropomorphic creatures. According to Wikipedia, "The pervading aesthetic of amigurumi is cuteness." I think Frida is definitely cute! If you would like to make a Frida Fish the pattern can be found at Lion Brand Yarn's web site. You have to follow the link to patterns and then go to free patterns or do a search for Amigurumi.....there's a lot of cuteness to be found there.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


It's been quite a while since I had attempted a quilt top with this many small pieces and this complicated. I guess that is what being snowed in does to you. There are only two different blocks in this top. They are 12 inch blocks and this quilt will be either a wall hanging or a baby quilt. I don't really think the materials or the design lend it to being a baby quilt unless there are some parents who are very willing to think outside the box. It could be a lap quilt for someone is a wheel chair though is it probably a little wide for that.

The interesting challenge I had in putting this quilt together was keeping track of where each fabric when and also coming up with easier and more current piecing techniques than the book offered. I wasted a lot of fabric using a method given in the book for one of the blocks.

The book I used was a old one and it was interesting to see how far we have come in making quilt making easier and more stream lined.

Now I have two quilt tops to quilt and bind before March 1. Hopefully the snow will stop falling and begin to melt soon so it is easier to get out and about. I have the batting for each, but a needing to get the backing for each. For those who are not familiar with Washington DC and metro area weather at the moment....we are currently drowning in snow. 30 inches here in Germantown last weekend and another 15 inches today and it is still snowing........I guess this is why I had time to complete several complicated quilt tops......

I really need to get back up to my paper crafting studio....I have at least another two days being basically snowed in so guess I can head there in the next few days.

I also will show you the little min I made today...the pinwheel blocks here are 1 1/2 inches square. I put the tape measure here so there was a reference point as to the side of the little quilt. I really like making these little guys. however people outside of the quilting world have no idea what they are. Simply they are little quilts. Most are used as a picture hung on the wall. A few may be used for quilts on the top of doll baby beds. They are wonderfully easy and quick little projects that use up scraps left over form other projects. What fun....

Now I am working on making several sets of coasters for the upcoming quilt show. I have till April 23 st make items that will be available for sale in the guild boutique...a great place to find gift items.

So much for a projects from several days being snowed in....I will have at least two more so we'll see what comes out of them.

Sunday, February 07, 2010


This is the beginnings of what I hope with be a wonderful wall hanging. This is the start of my Bloomin' Challenge for the 2010 FSQ quilt show. Anyone have any ideas what it will look like in a few days? I'm not even sure do. Hopefully it won't be too dark......that is my worry.

Stay tunes for more updates as I sew my way through the Snow of 2010.