Friday, December 30, 2011


When I think about my life 5 years ago and my life today, so many things have changed. Five years ago I was an active member of the rat race. Platform power heels were on my feet unless I was asleep or in the shower. I thought taking good care of myself involved regular mani, pedi, and waxing appointments, and making sure I always exceeded my sales quota. I did not have a sewing machine or an inclination to sew. The thought of doing something so domestic would have made me laugh hysterically.

Flash forward five years: I have enjoyed being a stay at home Mommy and domestic goddess. I work just as hard, but I like my bosses much better. It would be hard to match the pay and benefits, too. About 18 months ago I started to sew and quilt. It has been a wonderful creative outlet for me. Thank you to all of you who have supported me in my creative pursuits. I wonder if you even know who you all are?

Taking care of myself now includes caring for my family, working out 3 times a week, and making time in my schedule to sew. I confess that I still proudly wear my platform power heels all the time, and still enjoy the occasional mani. Just because I am a Mommy does not mean I have to be frumpy, right? Plus, I just love them!

You may be wondering what happened five years ago to make a woman change in so many ways. The answer is: Valerie

Happy 5th Birthday, Valerie! You (and your little sisters) are the best thing that ever happened to me!


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Back in the saddle

I apologize for not posting anything recently...recently being the last two months. For some reason, I was in a rut. First, it was the everyone in the family taking turns having a virus rut. Then, it was the I am completely overwhelmed rut. Finally, it was the creative rut. I decided that I was not going to think about all of the projects that I had to do, but rather what project do I feel motivated to do. That brings me to today.

This Anna Maria Horner velveteen fabric has been calling my name for over a year now. I had thought about making a dress for my oldest daughter, a skirt for me, a blanket for me, and probably half a dozen other ideas over that time. Still that beautiful fabric just sat there on a shelf in my sewing room, lonely and unloved.

Do you have a person in your life who makes you feel honored to just know him/her? I am fortunate enough to have a few. One of them in particular is a huge advocate for my creative side, and just about everything else I do. Today I knew what to do with that beautiful Innocent Crush velveteen fabric. Here it is, modeled by me (sorry but my husband would not let me take pictures of him wearing this), a Christmas gift for DP. (DP if you read this blog post before tomorrow night, pretend you have not already seen your presents.)

DP will probably wear this with the bill down in a way that will convey cool composure with a "don't test me" edge.

I am more of a bill up person. It looks like I am paying attention, but most likely I am day dreaming about something else. The matching scarf is part of the gift, too. I like accessories to match or co-ordinate.

Here is a side view.

Do you think I should make one for myself with some different fabrics? Is this something you think you would wear...bill up or bill down?

Happy 3rd night of Hanukkah! (I think it is the 3rd night. If it is not the third night, please forgive me.) A Very, Merry Christmas! Don't forget to leave some cookies and milk out for Santa. Happy Holidays!


Friday, October 28, 2011

Ghastlie Blog Hop Updates

The Ghastlies Blog Hop Day 4 Winner is...

...Evelyn from Mrs Sharon Ghastlies Gathering. Congratulations!

Have no fear there is still more Ghastlie Sistah to visit and more grand prizes to win. Today's mistresses of Ghastlie madness are:
Miss Trudi Ghastlie
Ms. Deonn Ghastlie
Mrs. Marlene Ghastlie
Mrs Kim Ghastlie
Mrs Tammy Ghastlie

To all those wonderful people who visited my Ghastlie Family yesterday, my heartfelt thanks for your kind words, and your support. I will be sending you all a personal response over the next few days.

The answer to the two biggest questions:
Yes, I did make the tie myself for my husband as a last minute project. I will put together a tutorial for it, but be warned as it will be my first tutorial. He has had a ton of fun wearing it to work and around town.

Yes, I did make the wrap myself as well. Let me know if you would like a tutorial for that, too and I can work on it as well. It was not difficult and has proved to be useful to me when my Ghastlie cat lets me use it.

Now, I am off on my broom to visit my other Ghastlie Sistahs...and to do some ghastly laundry.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

My Ghastlie Family

This is my first Blog Hop, and I love The Ghastlies, so as you can imagine I am very excited. Without further ado, I would like to introduce to you my Ghastlie family.

These are the Ghastlie girls...starting from top left and clockwise, yours truly, Mrs. Gooden Ghastlie, "A" Ghastlie, "V" Ghastlie and "L" Ghastlie.
Next up, Mr. Gooden Ghastlie
Here is a close up of Mr. Ghastlie's tie. He is off to earn money to keep his Ghastlie Girls from sucking him dry...
...or driving him batty.
After pre-school pre-ghoul, the girls lounge in the family room dungeon. Here is a close up of "A" Ghastlie's apron top. It is a pattern from the book, "Little Girls, Big Style".
Here is what the back looks like as worn by "L" Ghastlie.
"V" Ghastlie is all about the black cats like Sebastian and her bestie beastie friend, Prudence. Her blouse is from the book, "Making Children's Clothes".
I had to put in this most ghastlie picture of myself asking Mr. Ghastlie if this wrap made me look fat. He knew if he answered incorrectly he would be dearly departed.
Finally, here is our Ghastlie Cat making better use of my wrap.

Please make sure to leave a comment to be eligible to win some fab prizes courtesy of Madame Ghastlie herself from Sew I Quilt

Also check out the rest of my fellow Ghastlie Sistahs today and throughout the rest of the Ghastlie Blog Hop.

Today: Thursday October 27th

Mrs. Katherine Ghastlie

Ms Sharon Ghastlie
Mrs. Gooden Ghastlie--you're here. Thank you!
Ms. Selina Ghastlie
Mrs. Melinda Ghastlie

I'd love it if you would be a follower. Regardless, thanks for visitng us and have a Ghastlie Day!

Monday, October 24, 2011

A Ghastlie Blog Hop


Behind the scenes we ( 54 ) Ghastlie obsessed
Stitchers have been rather busy, you could say.

If you have this thing for Ghastlies
and they have tied you in a knot
and you wish you could get them out of your mind
than this may be a thought.

We heard her plea for a cure
Mdm Samm was pos/it/ively sure
that we could stitch the nights away
in hopes that we MAY----???
( all 54 of us)


The side effects are Ghastlie
there is no mistaking too.
if you don't run this very minute
YOU too will catch the FLU...

We suspected all along
this was her master plan
she did not want to be alone,
with all YOU Ghastlie FANS...

(I suspect there will be a CURE somewhere
in one of these blogs...)

HERE is OUR Schedule.....

ON Monday, October 24th

Mrs Kirie Ghastlie
Ms Carol Ghastlie
Ms. Wendy Ghastlie
Ms. Carrie Ghastlie
Mrs Holly Ghastlie

ON Tuesday October 25th

Mrs. Annie Ghastlie
Mrs Doris Ghastlie
Mrs Brandie Ghastlie
Ms. Alidiza Ghastlie
Mrs. JudyC Ghastlie

ON Wednesday October 26th

Mrs. Barb Ghastlie
Miss Karen Ghastlie
Ms. Loralynn Ghastlie
Ms. Jen Ghastlie.
Ms Penny Ghastlie
Mrs Rhonda Ghastlie

ON Thursday October 27th

Mrs. Katherine Ghastlie
Ms Sharon Ghastlie
Mrs. Gooden Ghastlie
Ms. Selina Ghastlie
Mrs. Melinda Ghastlie

ON Friday October 28th

Miss Trudi Ghastlie
Ms. Deonn Ghastlie
Mrs. Marlene Ghastlie
Mrs Kim Ghastlie
Mrs Tammy Ghastlie

ON Monday October 31st

Mrs. Toyna Ghastlie
Mrs Tiramisue Ghastlie
Mrs. Angela Ghastlie
Mrs Pauline Ghastlie
Mrs. Karin Ghastlie
Mrs Barb Ghastlie

ON Tuesday November 1st

Miss Daisy Ghastlie
Mrs. Dana Ghastlie
Mrs. Elaine Ghastlie
Mrs. Gramma Sheri Ghastlie
Ms. Suz Ghastlie

ON Wednesday November 2nd

Mrs. Jane Ghastlie
Mrs. Laura Ghastlie
Mrs. Mary Ghastlie
Mrs. Michelle Ghastlie
Mrs. Dawn Ghastlie
Mrs Mary Ghastlie

ON Thursday November 3rd

Mrs. Sharon Ghastlie
Mrs Corrie Ghastlie
Mrs Cheryl Ghastlie
Mrs. Linda Ghastlie
Mrs. Pickles Ghastlie

ON Friday November 4th

Mrs Nan Ghastlie
Mrs. Gmama Jane Ghastlie
Mrs Joan Ghastlie
Mrs. Nancy Ghastlie
Ms Susan Ghastlie
Madame Ghastlie

Each day we will have a giveaway...
Some of my Ghastlie Sisters have made some special
projects to giveaway and we will have daily BIG PRIZES
from these sweeten the CAULDRON....

Some of our Sponsors

Alexander Henry Fabrics- lot's and lot's of Ghastlie Fabric
Colonial Needle -sewing basket
Janes Fabrics -Kona fabrics in PINK -fat quarter bundle
Reliable Iron - orange Velocity 50
IHAN ( kelly )- aurifil threads
Coeurdalenegifts- 2 sets of Halloween lights
Forth Worth Fabric Studio - gorgeous gift set of Ghasltie fabric
Creative Grid -3 Rulers their top 3
Blue FIG- wheeled bag in PINK

and of course some sweet surprises from our
Guest Ghasltie Sissssssssssssters..!

Monday, October 17, 2011


It has been so long since I have posted. There are a few reasons.
1) I took the month of August off.
2) September was really strange.
3) I had not finished any projects that I thought would be of interest.

Sometimes when things get out of kilter, I have to remind myself of the things that keep me sane. Those of you who know me well, realize that "sane" is used in a relative sense. Sewing keeps me sane.

After some self reflection, I came to the acceptance that I am a mother, as a wife, as a sewer, as me.

My formula for getting back some sanity and perspective was:
Depeche Mode + Habitat + Wonder Woman + Binding = Synch

This banner will hang in my sewing room as a reminder for me that I am my most important work in progress.

Pollie the Collie says, "Happy October Everyone!"


Monday, July 11, 2011

That Old 45 or Why I Hated High School

My latest finished project was a challenge quilt for TMQG. I finished it just 2 hours before last night's meeting. Whew! Participants were given one Robert Kaufman Solids Charm Pack in the Dusty pallet--thank you RKF. We were allowed to use only the colors from the charm pack and one pattern for the quilt top. We had carte blanche for the binding and backing. This quilt is also my first entry to the linky party, Fabric Tuesdays at Quiltstory. The button is on the left. Check it out for lots of recent inspiration!

I called it That Old 45 because it reminded me of 45 records in their protective sleeves. Do you remember 45s? I love music! The first piece of music I ever purchased was a 45 of Our House by Madness circa 1982. You can catch that song and its video here:

Holy cow! Can I be dating myself any more?

The love for this quilt comes from that, and the unrelated fact that this quilt is for my Father-in-law. He is one terrific guy! Hopefully, this quilt will have a rugged, manly feel to it, and he will like it.

The hatred for this quilt comes from having an assignment with confining rules...just like high school. I was a good student, and as such I carried out my quilt assignment on time and obeyed all the rules, despite gnashing my teeth and some choice language shared only with my trusty Husqvarna Viking Sapphire 875Q.

Do you remember your first 45? I am speaking about the records, but if you have a great story about a birthday or malt liquor, I would be interested in hearing about those, too!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Pillow Swap Update

Hooray on all fronts regarding the Triangle Modern Quilt Swap this past Sunday. Jill Lee received my pillow with great enthusiasm. What a relief!

I received a pillow that was equal parts fantastic and cozy! Am I Lucky Ducky or what? As a matter of fact, Colleen at Lucky Duck Dreams, is the artist who made my pillow. Check her out at:

Or at least it used to be my pillow. That was until my 4 year old with very sophisticated taste saw it. She told me she knew the perfect place to put it...

...on her bed of course!

Thanks so much Colleen from myself and from my four year old.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Pillow Swap

The Triangle Modern Quilt Guild is having a pillow swap this Sunday. This is my first pillow swap and I am really excited about it. I have just finished my partner's pillow and...what if she does not like it? It is very much my style which one could safely call weird.

Truly, I do not want to disappoint my partner. Should I make a second pillow that is a little less me and a little more mainstream modern? Please advise.

Saturday, May 21, 2011


As much as I tried to avoid getting on the Sherbet Pips bandwagon...cute meets funky/ was too much to resist. So here is my first Aneela Hoey creation, The Pips.

It is my version of Amandajean's, aka Crazy Mom Quilts,, A Sweet Baby Crib. You can find it online at the Moda Bakeshop.

The back is pieced together with my favorite prints from the Sherbet Pips collection and leftover blocks. The binding is done on the bias with a super technique I found on The Bitter Purl, You can find it there posted on April 13, 2011.

This was an easy and very fun quilt to make. I think I might make it again with a different line. My four year old is going to be so excited when I give it to her, and I get a giddy feeling whenever I look at it. Woo hoo!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Happiness is a hug

Heads up this is light on quilting and heavy on cuteness (in my opinion).

Happiness is a nice cup of coffee on a mug rug...

...and happiness is a hug

So have a happy day today with hugs...and maybe some coffee, too.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Kindness is contagious

What the world needs is more kindness! That is a statement worth exploring. I have only been sewing for a year now, and quilting for about 9 months. I love it! Part of what I love has been the support shown to a newbie as myself. This support is found on countless blog and websites. There is a wealth of inspiration, encouragement and tutorials available. In return these generous folks only ask for you to respect and to credit their work where appropriate. In other words, just to be respectful and kind. I can certainly afford to be respectful, and it makes me happy to be kind.

Why does there seem to be less kindness in the world? More importantly, why would someone not be kind in their own community? In this case, the online community of sewers and quilters. I, myself, have not been the victim of any mean or harsh criticism...not yet. It hurts my feelings though to read some of the comments and criticisms posted lately regarding others. A long time ago, before we were "keeping it real," we were reminded to "not say anything if you have nothing kind to say." I think of myself as a modern woman, a modern mother, and a modern (very humble) quilter, but there is a place for old ways. Being kind to others others is a fine example in my opinion.

What can I do? Well, I am taking the Quilting Without Obligation pledge from That Girl...That Quilt.
That Girl... That Quilt

1. I am pledging to make quilts (and some other things, too) that bring joy to myself and hopefully others.

2. I am pledging to try and give back to this fabulous quilting/sewing community.

3. I pledge to be supportive of my piers in their creative journeys regardless if it is to my taste.

In a nutshell, I am pledging to be kind to myself and to others.

As a side note, it is one of my primary goals as a mom to raise my girls to be kind! No lie. Ask anyone who knows me and they will tell you, this is parenting goal of mine.

Kindness is contagious! So is quilting.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

blue matter

These are pictures of my submission to Challenge 2: Monochromatic.

As a very new quilter (this is my third quilt) this indeed was a challenge. Since I have been drawn to the wide array of blues lately, I thought that would be a good direction to take this project. What started out as a detailed plan for a modern dresden, turned into hundreds of quarter square triangles, stripes and bold borders. When I realized that the dresden plan was not what I wanted, I just improvised using the fabric how I just thought it should go together. There are over 12 different blue fabrics, several different shades of blue thread, and lots of blood (I still get the pins in my fingers sometimes), sweat and tears. Since it seemed like everything I looked at, or thought about was blue, I called this quilt, blue matter. All the blue matter was occupying my grey matter!

Any comments, advice, etc. are very much welcomed!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Just One Star...

If you have not heard of the Just One Star Program, check out these blog posts over at Happy Zombie and p.s. I quilt. You can thank an injured vet with a heartfelt, handmade quilt block, and enter a giveaway at P.S. I quilt:

The Just One Block Project asks participants to use their tutorial and suggested fabric combinations as the blocks will be added to make a larger red, white and blue quilt. Links to the tutorial, the requirements, and a picture of the larger quilt are found on the Happy Zombie blog post.

Here is a picture of my block.

That should make anyone feel good!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Fabric Giveaway at Jaybird Quilts

A charm pack from Treasures & Tidbits by Piece O'Cake Designs plus one of Jaybird Quilt's  newest patterns are part of a giveaway over at Jaybird Quilts between now and March 17th at midnight ET.

Make sure to check it out:

Happy Tuesday!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Moving on

The pillows at the Sew mama Sew Pillow Contest are really awesome.  Check them out.  Love Shack Baby was not a top 20 with the judges.  That is OK.  I am glad I finished one.  In fact, it generated my first comment.  That person really made me so happy and so encouraged.  Thank you glorious commentator person!    Most importantly, my three little girls love it.  They play with it and lay on it all the time.  Mission accomplished.

Time to move on to the next project.  Yes, it is more like a re-visit to a project that I had to take a break from a few blog posts ago.  The phoenix is rising in its third version.  Version one was going to be dresden plates in a serpentine layout.  Not working.  Version Deuce was going to be hexagons made from quarter triangles.  After cutting up 420 quarter triangles, I realized that my plan was destined for failure.  Enter Version Three:  framed quarter triangle blocks.  I am 8 of the 36 blocks in and I am liking it so far.  It is a little wonky, but so am I, truth be told.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Love Shack Baby

Without further ado, here is my entry to the Sew Mama Sew February Pillow Contest. It is called, Love Shack Baby. The inspiration is from my little girls. All of the scraps and fabrics used to make the Love Shack are from things I have made for my little girls: quilts, clothes, toys, etc. The hearts that are quilted onto the pillow are there because: 1)I like them and 2)because my machine has these decorative stitches, so why not use them? I always tell my girls that we live in a house of love, aka Love Shack Baby, and that means we always treat each other with love and respect. Now we have a reminder for our family room couch. What do you think?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Block Party

Are you coming?  There is a block party over at Quilt Story.  I am going over this evening with my "creative" block.

Fresh Poppy Design

See you there!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Cool new online tool at Connecting Threads

Check out what I put together using their kit builder tool:

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This tool lets you take any of Connecting Threads online patterns and populate them with any of their fabrics.  You can edit, delete and experiment until you have your perfect quilt designed.  The tool creates the kit for you.  All you have to do is pay for it...and then quilt it of course.

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