Piles of Projects!

I have been having such a blast in my studio creating quilts.  While my approach has been quite willy-nilly, I am finally starting to get myself a bit more organized.

I am really happy to have sent this group of quilts off to Colorado last week where my folks will help find good homes for them.  Hopefully they will brighten someone’s day.

I have been teaching myself how to do my own quilting and binding.  The binding part is much easier for me than the quilting.  The quilting part is definitely more challenging. My solution at this point is to focus on super simple quilting, straight lines with very subtle thread colors.  I am practicing on quilts for my dogs – below is Rainy in her quilt nest of practice quilts.


Here are more of my practice quilts – made completely from scraps from my scrap bag:

I have also been experimenting with new blocks.  This one I call the flattened donut block – I’m sure it has a much more official name but what the heck!  I still need to add some type of border on the top and bottom though – maybe a brick pattern using my plaid fabrics.


I have also just discovered basting spray and I think I really, really like it!  I spray basted this quilt and now need to do some simple quilting on it.  I really love these colors!


Today was an experiment with the quilt-as-you-go method plus some raw edge applique hippos. I sure do like my hippos!  I even got brave (or foolish – hee hee) enough to try some free motion quilting.  Let’s just say that my third hippo was better than the first.  I think I’m going to have to make a lot of hippos to get decent at it!  Red hippo is up next tomorrow.

I was also working this month on Mr Bear’s House in the Woods quilt.  I started making parts for this quilt in anticipation of a Freddy Moran class I was going to take.  But alas, not enough students signed up for the class so it was cancelled.  However, I was having so much fun making the houses and trees that I ended up finishing the quilt top in a few weeks.  I am definitely not going to attempt to quilt and bind this one myself though!  Off to the quilter it will go this week!  Gosh I really need to get a better picture of this quilt!  The colors are much more vibrant than this.


Coming up this month – quilting & binding the 15 quilt tops I have made over the past 5 months.  YIKES!  But certainly a lot of fun and thank goodness for basting spray.


Off to College Quilts!

She is off to college – and what fun we had getting everything ready.  I made a quilt for my daughter, a quilt for my niece and then a quilt for one of my daughter’s friends.  I enjoyed making every single block!


The tree quilt was for Swee, (my daughter’s friend), and we called it Swee’s Trees.  Swee came to our house back in June and picked out roughly 200 fabrics for her quilt and told me she liked the idea of trees.  So that’s what I made for her.  The color scheme was fun to work with but interestingly she did not choose a single red or purple fabric.  The best part of all was when I gave it to her and seeing her reaction.


This quilt was for my niece.  I made her quilt similar in style to my daughter’s quilt.  I used their favorite t-shirts as the base and then built it out from there.  Each quilt has around 250 unique fabrics in it.  I think it took four months to complete both quilts.


This is my daughter’s quilt in her dorm room!  I also made her two huge pillowcases to go with her 28″x28″ pillows.  It really makes her dorm room happy and comfy!

My next project is to make a series of lap size quilts that I am hoping to sell at a craft fair during the holidays.  Should be interesting!!!

Getting Ready for 2015!

Happy Day-After-Christmas!

The last 4 months have been quite eventful!  After 19 years with my company and ironically 19 months of partial sick-leave due to a crazy virus, my job was eliminated.  It was a bit of a bummer and my first time at being unemployed in my adult life.  But thankfully I have a super supportive family and now I find myself really enjoying my new life.  No more crazy pace, no more travel and fretting about getting home, and no more pressure to hit quotas.  What I do have time for is taking care of my family, saying hello to neighbors when I’m out walking and more time to create fun things from fabric.  I am a very lucky girl!

Due to my new work status, I decided that I would make my family Christmas gifts this year.  I thought I would try my hand at something wearable rather than a quilt.  So I ended up making my people some very fun and outrageous pants.  I had a hard time making the pattern, so I made a few modifications to better suit my skill level.   I can say that after one go at elastic waists – that part of the pattern was simply eliminated!   Good heavens that stuff is tricky to work with.  Plus who wants all that constriction anyway?

Everyone got something different and personalized.  I had a blast making them!  Here are my pants:

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Collage Quilt

300+ bits of fabric and 3 sticks of washable glue = tons of fun!


A couple of weeks ago I took a collage class taught by Freddy Moran.  Freddy’s newest passion is creating collage quilts and they are really quite fantastic.  She likes to cut out huge, colorful flowers and then glue them on a black and white background.  That’s just her starting point.  Then she adds all sorts of things ranging from flower pots, leaves, curtains, windows, and more.  The end result is spectacular to see.

Before the class started, I thought I would create a collage sailboat.  So I sewed together a basic boat and came to class with a bundle of little scraps and a glue stick.

When I got to class, Freddy did a fabulous show and tell where we saw at least 10 of her most recent collage quilts.  When I saw all of those big, colorful flowers I started to think that maybe I should drop the boat idea and make a flower quilt instead.  I started thinking about how I could just buy a black and white background piece, maybe buy some fabric to make flowers, etc.

But the funny part was then Freddy told us just to use what we had on hand and make anything we wanted.  So I chuckled to myself and stayed with the boat idea.

I had a lot of fun making this.  Now I’ll need to start learning how to quilt something like this myself 🙂

Repurposing Repurposed Guatemalan Clothes and What Nots

A couple of weekends ago we went to an arts & craft fair in our neighborhood.  We’ve been each year for the past few years and it is always such fun.

There are so many different artists with all sorts of unique, handmade goodies.  One man had a unique design for kaleidoscopes and we really enjoyed checking those out.  There was also the crepe booth where we demolished a fantastic buckwheat crepe with swiss cheese and green onions – that was soooo yummy!  I could eat that everyday 🙂

One of my favorites was my friend Sondra’s booth because that’s where she showcases all of her fiber art.  Her focus is on fabric dolls and this year she added small wall hangings.  (Sondra is the one who does all the neat quilting on my quilts.)  Here is the little wall hanging I bought – love the colors and design.


As we were coming to the last group of booths, my eye was immediately caught by some really special fabrics.  A woman had purchased loads of Guatemalan shirts, mats and vests and had repurposed them into tablecloths, cloth napkins, jackets and purses.

The tablecloths and napkins really grabbed my attention.  The colors were rich and gorgeous and they felt so soft.  I was quite taken.  I bought a large tablecloth and 3 sets of napkins.  I was already starting to visualize a quilt.

As it happened, I also received a small order of solids in the mail that same day.  The Guatemalan fabrics and solids looked really nice together and I couldn’t wait to start cutting!


I think if I stayed in her booth any longer, I would have bought even more!  I kind of wish I had actually!!

Anyway, I have finished the main part of the quilt.  I love the colors!  I am working on the border now.  I’m trying to figure out how to do several types of blocks for the border because making 44 of anything that has to be about the same is quite boring 🙂

Here is a close up so you can see the fabrics.  I love them!


Here is the main part of the quilt so far.


Now – it’s back to work on the border pieces 🙂


2014 New Quilt Blogger Blog Hop – Welcome!

Hello and thanks for popping into Talking Lunchbox Quilts for the 2014 New Quilt Blogger Blog Hop!  I am really excited to be a part of this Hop and have been having a ball checking out the other Hopper’s sites.  So many beautiful quilts and awesome ideas!

I love the energy and fun of quilting.  I made my first quilt about 8 years ago and haven’t stopped since.  My point of entry was making house quilts.  Freddy Moran was my teacher and biggest inspiration.  One of her favorite sayings is to make houses that would shock the neighbors.  I took that advice to heart!

Monster House Quilt. My imagination kind of ran amuck with this one!


Houses are fun to make – so are castles!  A pink castle would surely shock the neighbors, don’t you think?

Calcutta Castle – complete with a princess in the window.

After making a bunch of house quilts – some wilder than others – I then got into making bird house quilts.  Those were also really fun to make!  If I was a bird, I would want to live in one of these crazy houses.

Birdhouse Quilt – Not for your basic bird!

I also love to make sailboats.  I started off following a pattern but after one quilt, I decided to make my own design – no measuring or fussy cutting.  I like that much better!  🙂

First Sailboat Quilt – Followed a pattern for the sailboats
Second Sailboat Quilt – started to design my own boats
Now I only make sailboats that I design. I really love making them!

I also like to play around with Steam A Seam.  I get a giggle out of making stick people quilts – they are quite cooperative and willing to do anything.  They’re just happy little devils!  Tee-hee.

I like to call this one Cirque de Stické. Yes, I am a big goofball!

This is the quilt I used for my blog.  I love all dot fabrics!  They’re so bright and happy.  A perfect match for my happy stick people.

5th Grade Dance – yep, that’s what they look like! 🙂

Here are a few random things about me and quilting:

  • I love using bright colors and fun designs to make people smile
  • Giving quilts to family and friends makes me happy
  • Taking classes and sewing with other people is so much fun
  • Buying fabric is such a blast!
  • Finding inspiration in unexpected places and ways is such a rush when it happens
  • I like to listen to books while I am sewing – ranging from mysteries to romances
  • I also like listening to music – usually R&B but I also like reggae and flamenco
  • I am a firm believer in the power of silliness and sometimes I snort when I laugh 🙂

One of my most recent quilts was inspired by a picture of a fiber art piece I saw in a magazine.

Liquid Fire – 2014

Thank you for visiting!  I hope to get to know more of you!!  OOXX

Here are more stops on our Blog Hop – please check out these very talented ladies!

Sarah @ Smiles Too Loudly

Vera @ Negligent Style

Michelle @ Michelle Bartholomew

Katie @ Good Golly Ginger

Cheryl @ Meadow Mist Designs

Jana @ Jana Machado

Karin @ Leigh Laurel Studios

Kim @ Ties That Bind Quilting

Yvonne @ Quilting Jet Girl


Another Awesome Freddy Moran Class!

Two weekends ago I was at a Zig Zag class taught by Freddy Moran at one of my local quilt shops, the Cotton Patch.  Freddy was my first quilt teacher and I have taken 8 to 10 classes with her over the past 8 years.

Every class with Freddy is such a blast.  I think it’s a combination of her stories – she’s got loads of them – and how interactive she is throughout the class.  She is always interested in seeing what we are making during the class and is constantly sharing our projects with the other members of our group.  Plus she is really funny and totally makes me laugh!

For this class, there was lots of cutting needed because the entire quilt is made up of squares.  I went a bit overboard on my cutting and have enough squares for at least 6 quilts.  Yee gads!!  I have between 45 to 60 different fabrics cut for each color (except black)!  I think I spent a total of 24 hours cutting squares.



I decided to try something a little different than the class sample in that instead of using a solid color for the background, I decided to use my assortment of “whites”.  As I started sewing the squares together, I got a little worried that this may not have been a good plan.  I wanted to see if I could make the zig zag pattern show up but be a bit more subtle.  At the same time, I really wanted to use a massive amount of different fabrics just for the fun of it.

However during our class, the more squares I sewed together, the more skeptical I got.  I kept telling my table mate that perhaps my idea had run amuck.  Freddy didn’t say anything – she just smiled and said keep going and then we’ll take a look at it.  Well okey-dokey I said.

So I kept going.  Once I got a few rows put together, we decided that it did work after all.  It was definitely more subtle, but you could see the zig zag.  I even surprised myself given how it looked before I sewed a bunch of the blocks together!



This is a work in progress, I have one more row to add and then it will be done.  Now I think it would be really fun to make this as a two color quilt as well.  Maybe red and yellow, or red and green for the Holidays?  Hmmm.

Looking forward to signing up for the next Freddy class.  🙂

Stratas and Diamonds

I’ve been busy making lots of strata sheets for my latest diamond quilt.  I loved making the red and yellow diamond quilt and decided to experiment with a diamond quilt that used cool colors.  Even though the greens & light blues and the purples & dark blues blended a bit more than I had anticipated, I really like how it turned out.  (Especially with summer almost here!)

This one is for my daughter and I am getting ready to hand it off to my quilter/friend for finishing.  The back is going to be a royal blue minky with a raised dot texture.  The quilt is large enough to fit on her queen size bed.

I wonder how a multi-colored diamond quilt would look?  Hmmmm….

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A Little Taste of Mexico

A few years ago, one of my dearest friends travelled extensively through Mexico.  During one of her stops, she came across a collection of these beautiful pieces of hand embroidered art.  She brought them home with her and then generously gave me half of her collection to make a quilt with.  I spent a lot of time making this quilt because I wanted it to be just right.  Each fabric had to audition and I made more changes than I have ever made in a quilt just so that it would all be perfect.

I hope you enjoy looking at this one 🙂


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Birdhouses Part 2

I had gotten such a kick out of making the first set of birdhouses that I decided I needed to make a second.

I changed things up a little – different color background, identical striped stands for all the houses and a different center.  My favorite change though was converting the big pinwheels into mini-pinwheels.  I had to do a trial and error to get the dimensions right but it was worth it.  I think the minis are super cute.

I also added the serpentine thing in the center just for fun because I’ve always wanted to make one of those!

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