It's Been A Ghastly Winter ~



The coldest for the longest that I can remember.  The HuMan has to go out every morning and break the ice and pour the birds hot water for their bath!



 
Then he hot foots it back inside!
 
 

"Ghastly " Alexander Henry, De Leon design team fabric perfectly described this ghastly cold winter. 
 





And the camera lens nearly froze as did I, but I really, really wanted a picture of this ghastly quilt outside in the ghastly cold winter.  

Brrrrrrrrr.   But thanks to the cold weather, I've stayed in and now this one is quilted.  It's a good cold weather lap quilt size at 45" x 65".  No borders, but improv sashing added to give it a few more inches. 




 

January Fabric Landscape Collage Workshop


What a treat it was yesterday to share the day making fabric landscape collages with Lynda Britton.  Lynda is an active member of Red River Quilt Guild and drove east from Shreveport to enlighten all us participants on how easily she constructs landscapes.  No heavy duty equipment required!

Here's just a sampling of what we made.  If I have the incorrect name on the landscape, you'll just have to correct me in the comments:  Remember, this was yesterday and memory isn't real sharp while out landscaping.

On the street under a blue cloud burst

Blue Bonnet Mountain





Cactus Country at Sunset


Beyond the duck pond lives a village.....

 
 

Pine Tree Island


The desert is beginning to come together



Rugged Mountain Scape:  Maker Unknown


Peace Be With You


Summer Sailing
 

The Barnyard - by Theresa LeBlanc
 



The Dairy Barn - made by Renea Joiner  




Purple Passion




Theresa is wild about purple but looks great in red
 

Here's The Plan ~



To help keep me from venturing too far off the path, I've decided to put it in writing....starting with the plan for January.  So far so good.
  • January 1 - didn't watch a football game.
  • January 2 - lunch with friend and a bit of shoe shopping.  What?  A girl can't go barefoot!
  • January 3 - Dropped off a quilt top to Jan for her to add her beautiful quilting.
Improv to the house quilt top....with improv log cabin border

  •  Drove finished workshop sample quilts over to Kelly and had a wonderful lunch.  Then over to Bella Nonna to enjoy the vinegar and olive oil tasting.  They make it easy to taste with locations in Shreveport, Ruston and Natchitoches.  Yummm. 


  •  Next stop, Joann Fabrics and what a disappointment that was!  I didn't realize they were moving house and cleaning out the old stuff at this location.  And I even had an additional 20% off senior discount.  Oh, well....I'll be visiting the new location later in the spring....no doubt! 
  • January 4 - NELA quilt guild meeting...first of the new year.  I'm secretary of the group so have to really listen up. 
  • January 6 - Landscapes art quilt workshop with Lynda Britton. 
  • And on Sunday, we rest.

  • January 11 - over to Ruston to enjoy the Piney Hills Quilt Guild meeting.  Staying after to begin formation of an art quilt group.  Thanks Sharon....I needed something else to do!
  • January 13 NELA Modern quilt guild meeting.  I think a brief meeting is planned with a sit and sew afterward.  Always a good time to sit back and listen to the younger crowd talk about how busy is their schedule.   Retirement is cool....so much free time.
  • A break in between before the Tangi House Retreat January 25-29 where 9 of us laugh until we cry (or wet our pants), sew a bit, do a little shopping at Mama's Quilt Shop, eat a lot and have a chocolate martini. 
  • Somewhere in here I plan start-to-finish another improv house sampler for a Red River Quilt Guild workshop.  Improv is not only block content but there's improv as to color and improv as to choices of fabric. 
Improv to the house quilt top....out of my head and onto the drawing board aka design wall

  • And finally, there's a quilt top on the shelf  ready to be quilted and delivered to community service. 
Yes, here's the plan.   Practicing what I preach....always have a plan for the project at hand, but never anticipate the conclusion.   Allow the project to take its natural course, taking crossroads and veering off the planned path when needed. 



 

2017 ~ Have I Told You Lately That I Loved You?



This was a most wonderful year, filled with folks I love....filled with good times....filled with good health. 



It was a very dry summer
In the good ole summertime, I can always find him in the back garden ~


It was a year filled with fun travels - quilting retreats and quilt shows.

On the street in Savannah, Georgia 2017






Tangi House Retreat, Independence, Louisiana August 2017

A year filled with finishing quilts for myself and for others.

quilts ready for community service

Circles.....ready to be quilted for guild program July, 2017
 

Improv half-rectangle triangles:  Hand quilted by Moi
It was a year filled with workshops and challenges ~

Loved, loved, loved the Sue Welton thrift store shirts quilting workshop.  Sue was a guest at Quilters' Guild Acadienne.  What a delight!



Oh, what a trip it was to the beach with Karen Echmeier ~



And probably the challenge of the year was perfecting this image using confetti fabric crumbs as taught by Nadine Cain in her most enlightening workshop.  Who knew crumbs could be so good.  The Vase for The Cherrywood Fabric VanGogh fabric challenge did not get juried in, but that certainly didn't diminish the fun in the making.  Thank you Nadine for the pleasure of your company while we all made confetti. 





And then there was the Sarah Fielke "Down the Rabbit Hole" block of the month challenge.  The 8th month is complete and the 9th - 12th month continues to be a work-in-progress for 2018. 





It was a year for finishing bags and zippered pouches for gifts and guild fund raisers.
No guts boxie pouch.....one of many made for gifts and give-aways. 

 
and a Noodlehead design zippered pouch


I'm continuing to enjoy making the sew together bag.  When filled, it truly is a bag with all my sew together stuff all together in one place. 


And it was a year to continue to expand my love for book making in Bari Zaki's Buttonhole Stitch Bookbinding workshop......



Oh, yes, 2017 I loved you. Thanks for the memories. 
 
Marty
 
 
 

Merry Christmas to you from our house ~



Improv To the Houses - a quilt by Marty Mason


Yes, the house is filled with improvisationally pieced house quilts.....getting ready for a workshop that I've aptly named "Improv To The Houses." 

Improv To the Houses - a quilt by Marty Mason


From our house to yours, have yourself a very Merry Christmas.


Improv To the Houses - a quilt by Marty Mason
 
Improv To the Houses - a quilt by Marty Mason
 


Marty and The HuMan

 

Still celebrating The Quilt Festival.....Houston 2017



I make all the kids in my family Christmas gifts each year.  2017 began with pillowcase love, so that's what each will receive.   My original idea was to pin each child's pillowcase with a "sweet dreams" card which may or may not include money.....depending on the amount of naughty or nice they've been the past year!

Change of plans:  As I was shifting paper into recycle yesterday morning, I ran into The Festival program and had a voila moment.....why not use my time and talent to make each child a cute little origami box to slip the cash into! 

Quilt Festival Program paper for origami gift box

Quilt Festival Program paper for origami gift box


Not only will they each get a handmade pillowcase, but also  a handmade gift box to hold their money gift.  You see, I'm still celebrating Quilt Festival - I took glossy pages from the Festival program and made 16 little origami boxes yesterday. 




Origami-  folded paper gift boxesOrigami-  folded paper gift boxes


Origami-  folded paper gift boxes
 
I folded that glossy paper, refolded, then folded again to the finished number
 
Origami-  folded paper gift boxes
 
Let the holiday season begin....it sure has here at my house
and I'm loving it!
 
 
 

Diamonds can be a quilters' best friend !


I mentioned to another quilt maker the other day that I was prone to depression.  In retrospect, that's not really true.  You see, when the blues start touching my spirit, then we head over to the scrap bins and within minutes the oppressive and depressive feelings are gone. 




 
 



In there stead were diamonds - about 60 foundation paper pieced from scraps and strings completed over the past several days.  Oh, yes, I have a plan for every one. 










And, if that's not enough to cure the blues, the scrap bins were further downsized with these pouches now ready to donate to Bayou Creations booth, NELA Quilt Show, 2018. 


An Atkinson Design Pouch made for Bayou Creations by Marty Mason

An Atkinson Design Pouch made for Bayou Creations by Marty Mason

An Atkinson Design Pouch made for Bayou Creations by Marty Mason

 
 
An Atkinson Design Pouch made for Bayou Creations by Marty Mason


An Atkinson Design Pouch made for Bayou Creations by Marty Mason
 


An Atkinson Design Pouch made for Bayou Creations by Marty Mason


Sewing away the blues.......I'm feeling giddy!