Thursday, May 25, 2023

:: Catching up... & saying goodbye.

In the past several weeks, I have started a journal post many times… but each time it has been put aside. Why I wasn’t following through - I still can’t put my finger on, but I’ve decided just to start fresh and so here I am. Compared to what I post, you’d be surprised how much I ‘compose’ posts in my head, but it’s always while I’m in the midst of doing something else… out in the garden, working on new fabric designs (& I can’t share!), or on a walk with Emmie…So, I think about you so much more than I show… really!

I realized that I need to literally make a time each week to communicate here - & to quit wondering if anyone will care about what I share. So that’s my plan. Some weeks, I hope it will be full of new, fun things, but I know there will be weeks when I’m working on things I can’t share for often a months or even a year ahead. That is when it’s so hard to write posts (!) - but I promise to try.

To bring things up to date - my latest fabric collection Ellie is now at the mill. (Ellie is scheduled to arrive in shops in October.)  I’m also told the strike-offs for the next collection should be arriving soon & so I’m looking forward to seeing them. It’s always a little bit of a hold-your-breath feeling until they arrive. Thankfully the design team at Moda will see them first, & if there are ‘tweaks’ that need to be made - they give you a little heads-up before the arrive on my front porch. 

I also want to say a great-big “thank you!” to everyone who shopped the fabric sale I had on the website… Wow folks! You kept me so very busy for many days! I love all the fabrics that I had held onto (many for so long!) - but I’m so happy they have found new homes with many of you!

Next up will be some bundles that I’ve been keeping… & I’ll let you know when I’ll be getting all of those ready.

For the past couple of weeks, I’ve been keeping myself very busy in the backyard garden, installing some new drip irrigation lines… before the summer temperatures arrive. It’s also kept my mind occupied & that has been a blessing.  On the evening of May 7, I received a phone call from my niece letting me know that my sister, Marsha had passed away. We knew she was dealing with so many health issues (all complicated by her type 1 diabetes), but she was always such a champion. She continually rose above her struggles & was always joyful in each day she was given. But this was her time. She had become more fragile over the past few months & was having a harder time overcoming her struggles. A few years ago, she had a big scare - as she went into ketoacidosis  & went into a coma, as well as several other medical issues all happening at the same time. She miraculously survived & since then we spoke a lot on the phone, often daily. I treasure each & every one of those conversations. 

She loved the streaming television series, ‘The Chosen’, & we always had wonderful conversations about how much more real this series has made Jesus to us. After her coma a couple of years ago, she shared that she wasn’t sure if she was dreaming, but she knows that she was walking with who she knew was Jesus, but she was just behind his shoulder & couldn’t see his face. She remembers that she felt so comfortable, & at peace, but He gently told her it wasn’t time… not yet.  She still couldn’t see his face… & when she woke, she could remember it so clearly. We laughed when I said that maybe she couldn’t see his face because if he didn’t look like Jonathan Roumie, (the actor that portrays Jesus in ‘The Chosen’) - she might have been disappointed!! :-)   We giggled at that many times since, but I know that as she left this earth, into the presence of our Savior, what the actor that portrays Jesus looks like was forgotten. She was in Jesus’ presence… face-to-face.  I smile when I think of that now & while it’s bittersweet, I’m so joyful in knowing she is eternally in His sweet comfort & peace, & that we will be reunited someday. I so miss our phone calls, & listening to her share about her days & her ten grandchildren. As she shared about how she felt knowing her time here on earth could end at any time, for her she always said it was a, “Win - Win”.

This is one of my favorite photos of Marsha (With Dad, in prayer, at one of her daughters' weddings.) 

Dad & Marsha

I miss you Marsh… Hug Mom & Dad for me.


Sunday, March 19, 2023

:: Introducing - 'Ellie'

 Whoosh….! My goodness these last 2 months have gone by so fast! 

I did have a fabric deadline… & I am currently finishing up writing directions for new patterns for my ‘Ellie’ fabric collection… (& pattern writing was delayed because of the new fabric collection deadline… & I didn’t plan ahead enough!) So, while I’ve been thinking about what I wanted to post - it’s been staying on the back burner. But - I’m finally sitting myself down & I’m hoping I don’t ramble on too much!

First, I want to introduce my latest fabric collection, ‘Ellie’. ‘Ellie’ is currently being shown to quilt shop owners & it is scheduled to ship mid-late October 2023.


I have had so much fun with ‘Ellie’! Here’s what I wrote about 'Ellie' for the Moda catalogue.

“Making a home surrounded by flower gardens and cozy soft colors is what brings me such joy. No matter where you might live, being able to bring some that softness into our daily lives is a way of taking a deep breath, of welcoming tranquility and comfort.

With a fresh color palette that you can mix for seasonal quilts & projects, or including all the color families for a scrappy garden of colors, ‘Ellie’ envelops these airy, fresh, cozy feels for your home, and to share with those you love. Take a deep breath & welcome Ellie into your home!’

Last fall, when I made my choices & gave the approval for the ‘Ellie’ strike-offs - I knew what I wanted to do for patterns right away. I knew that I wanted to do another appliqué design (it’s been awhile!), & I knew I wanted to keep all the designs very fresh & classic… & so here are the new patterns… 

Felicity - 

I honestly can’t decide if I like the light or pebble background better. I love them both. 

I made the border pieced - so that once all the appliqué is complete - you can complete the quilt so much faster. I was inspired by the striping that you find on French toweling for the border design. I just love her!  Felicity measures 51” x 51.

Ellie - 

This quilt design is in celebration of the flowers that I love being surrounded in. I made Ellie in two sizes - so that you can make it a coverlet size (84” x 84”)  - or a throw / table topper size (66” x 66”).  (The block size is the same - the large size is made larger with the addition of a border.)   Pick the colors you love to make this design custom for you!

Sojourn - 

The block I used in Sojourn is one of the vintage blocks that I have seen in books that focus on vintage quilts. These kind of quilts are the ones that really stir my heart. I honestly want to make all of them, & have a selection of these classic, simple designs. They make for wonderful quilts that can be used in home decor - & compliment so many different styles. That’s why they are such classic.

The original vintage quilt was a two color quilt - & so while I designed a scrappy version, featuring the ‘Ellie’ fabrics - I couldn’t help but also include the two-color versions… this time in pebble & green. Again… I love them all.

Fair Meadow

You may recognize this design! Many (many) years ago (in my first year designing quilts!), I designed a quilt called Meadow. I re-released the pattern, with a mini-version with my ‘Ambleside’ fabric collection (9 years ago now) - & over the years, I have received many requests for it to be larger… so was borne - Fair Meadow. 

Fair meadow does have appliqué on the borders - but I use the fusible, machine stitched technique that makes it much easier than it might look. This version is square & will work as a larger throw or coverlet.  Fair Meadow measures 76” x 76”

Garden Path

The design for Garden Path came from just that… a garden path!  I took a photo of a path done in stonework that wound through a garden because I couldn’t stop looking at… it fascinated me! So, I played around with it - & figured out how to re-create it in fabric. Because the path was made up from multiple colors & shades of stone, I used a fat quarter bundle for mine - keeping the scrappy look. (I also think it could be done with a more subtle tonal palette & it would look wonderful too!)  Garden Path measures 76” x 76”.

The new patterns will be available on the website in about a week… & as a thank you for your support - for the first week they will be 20% off.

Also… on the website you can pre-order some of the ‘Ellie’ pre-cuts. The pre-orders will only be up for a limited time, as I will be using the pre-order numbers as a guide for when I place my order. So, check with your local quilt shop to see if they will have 'Ellie' for you - & for those of you who don't have a local shop - I'm happy to make sure you can get your 'Ellie'!

I’m thinking about kitting a couple of the quilts & I'm still deciding - so if there are any of the new quilts that you would like as a kit - let me know!

Thanks so much folks…  I know that it can be a little frustrating to be shown things that aren’t available yet… (& trust me I get it - I have to keep everything a secret for about a year!) … but I hope you enjoy getting some peeks at what’s coming soon…

… & if it’s anything like the first 3 months of this year… ‘Ellie’ will be here before you know it!


Sunday, January 8, 2023

:: The Human Heart...

 (This is a long post - I know… but it’s from my heart & I hope it blesses you.)

What a week this has been. 

Design-wise I’ve had a bunch of fun working on quilt designs for my next fabric collection (making its debut in March), & I’m so excited to (finally) have a new appliqué quilt to share with you! (…soon!)

In the midst of all the designing (i.e. playing with new fabrics!) - I’ve also been making plans for some new things for the website that I’m very excited about. UPS has been delivering some special boxes for some very special items that I’ve been collecting just for you! (Sorry… I know some of you don’t like the ‘tease’!) So, as soon as I complete some design deadlines - then I’ll be able to work on the new items… but for now - I’ve made shipping free for US customers! Use the discount code FREESHIP at checkout & we will cover the shipping!  (For international shipping - please see the shipping info page for how we’re handling international shipping these days.)

At the beginning of the week, after being in the studio all day - to the accompaniment of movies on DVD… I decided to check the news to find that everyone was covering the events of what had just happened on Monday Night Football. There was a player down on the field & while I’m not a big football fan, what I observed grabbed my heart & brought tears to my eyes & I prayed.

Damar Hamlin, a 24 year old 'safety' on the Buffalo Bills football team, had just completed what was referred to as a ‘routine’ tackle of a player on the rival team, the Cincinnati Bengals. Damar sprung up after the tackle, seeming fine, but within seconds he fell backwards & lay motionless on the filed. 

He suffered a cardiac arrest & his heart had stopped.

The teams trainers,  EMTs (Emergency Medical Team) sprang into action, & administered CPR & had to use a defibrillator to re-start his heart. While all those out on the field have seen players be injured on the field & need medical assistance - nothing like that had ever happened on a football field… & it shook everyone.

To their knees.

All over the field, great big men in football gear were crying openly & holding each other up, joining hands, & kneeling with their heads bowed in prayer. As the ambulance took Damar - in critical condition - off the field, the team was gathered on a huge circle, heads bowed, & praying.

1.2.23 - prayer on the field

The next day, I tuned into ESPN (a sports channel) to see if there were any updates - & one of their broadcasters, Dan Orlovsky - a former football player, stopped & prayed, on-air, for Damar & his family. (You can also watch it here.

At a time when I’ve been hesitant to even turn on news - because of how bizarre & seemingly out-of-control things are these days, it was such a blessing to see that when it really comes down to it… we know, in our hearts, what is really important & where to turn for what we really need.

I received an email yesterday with this post, written by Russ Barksdale, attached to it, & it says so clearly what has been so clearly demonstrated this week, & I wanted to share it with you. Please note that it was written the Monday evening when this happened… but the truth is timeless.

“I’ve been playing and watching football for 60+ years. I’ve never seen what I saw tonight. Damar Hamlin, safety for the Buffalo Bills, made a tackle—and may not live. I don’t know Damar personally. Actually never heard of him. But I found myself glued to the TV praying for him that somehow God would intervene and save his life. As of this writing (9:55 p.m. CST), he is in critical condition in a Cincinnati hospital.

“What was demonstrably visible after his injury were the reactions of players, coaches, announcers, and fans. While the EMTs and other health professionals worked feverishly on him, at times ‘vigorously administering’ CPR, players and coaches on both sides reacted in various ways: shock, tears, disbelief, and silence. The crowd also watched in hushed tones as the drama played out in the middle of the field. Announcers began to use words like ‘well-wishes’ and other terms of concern.

“But notably, the one word and the one action that was most observable was in reference to—wait for it—prayer. Many of the players got on their knees and were visibly seen praying. Coaches called their players together to take a knee and pray for Damar, as well they should. 

“Solomon wrote, ‘He (God) has also put eternity in their (human’s) hearts’ (Ecclesiastes 3:11). Another translation puts it this way: ‘He has planted eternity in the human heart’ (Ecclesiastes 3:11 NLT).

“When tragedy strikes, something in us looks upward to find answers, to find help, to find hope, to find courage. This occurs in Christ-followers and those who don’t know Christ. It happens among Hindus, Muslims, Jews, agnostics, and atheists. We instinctively, even if only for a few moments, look to something, someone who is beyond us. Years ago, I heard the statement, ‘There are no atheists in foxholes.’

“Solomon said it right: God has placed eternity on our hearts. EVERY human being senses that there is something beyond this reality. The Bible clearly reveals that the something is someone.

“The God who created all that is, the God who did not abandon us in our brokenness and weakness, the God who entered into our reality and took on our fleshly likeness, the God who sacrificed Himself to atone for & pay for our sinful nature, the God who promises to work everything out for good, the God who enters our being and gives us hope and strength to get through, the God who promises that one day all things will make sense, the God who promises to one day right every wrong, the God who promises to do away with any need for tears and grief—that God is the One who put eternity on our hearts.

“Stop denying Him. Stop fighting Him. Stop refusing Him access to your life. Turn to Him and find healing, help, and hope. He made you to do just that.”


As I write my post, it’s Sunday afternoon, Damar Hamlin, while still in intensive care has made, according to his doctors, amazing progress. He has a long road ahead of him, but he has made it clear though a social media post - that he knows that while he would like to be with his teammates playing on the football field, he knows that, “God (is) using me in a different way today”. He sure is.

(… & as a cherry on top of all of this… Damar Hamlin had created a Go-Fund-Me page for a children’s toy drive that he had set a modest goal of $2,500 for. As of this morning - people have donated over $8.5 million dollars.)  What an amazing statement of love.

In these worrisome days… this is just what all our hurting hearts needed to witness. I know I have been filled with such hope & thankfulness this week.