Newest "Inspired by a 9-patch" quilt top

I'm an old(er) toot, but I'm of the modern persuasion when it comes to quilting.   I'm honored to be invited to teach a quilting workshop in a couple of weeks for my friends and fellow Quilt Guild Acadienne members in Lafayette, Louisiana. 

It's gonna be fun with some in the workshop wanting a traditional approach and some a very modern version of the double-disappearing nine-patch.   I've been busy this summer making up lots of DD9-patch quilt tops and when I looked back, discovered that most of them are modern....improvisational piecing and block placement.   No, I'm not EVEN tired of this sew and cut and sew and cut again approach to quilt-making so I whipped up another quilt top with a more traditional tone the other day using my newly found Robert Kaufman "Spot On" charm pack. 

Double Disappearing 9-Patch with Robert Kaufman "Spot On" charm pack - made by marty mason

I had three blocks left over and added a lot of background white to arrive at this minimalist modern:
Yes, it is the same technique!  But what a difference adding background made.  I'm addicted to the double disappearing 9-patch.  I'm also addicted to this quilt-as-you-go-quilting technique. 

modern double disappearing 9-patch by marty mason
I love that little touch of green: 
Oh, yes, I am very patriotic, but with that smidge of green, I thought the name just fit this quilt! 

modern double disappearing 9-patch by marty mason

So, you see, it's not necessarily the fabric that makes  a quilt modern or's the quilt maker who makes the difference.  (she says)


and it's as if i had nothing to do ~

modern quilting logo - a note card by marty mason

when i discovered this mod squad script in a magazine and lifted it onto a note card and placed the card on one of my hand painted/stamped fabrics that abounds in and around the studio and grabbed the camera

you see, i'm a member of a modern quilting group in lafayette, louisiana,  and we call ourselves "the mod squad" 

so it was fitting that i complete this task to reinforce who i am and who we are and that we are not alone even though we feel isolated at times
our numbers are growing

so here's to you mod squad louisiana and anywhere else
you may be quilting modern

modern quilting logo - a note card by marty mason

Stash Management

Stash management was the topic of the day at yesterday's guild meeting.  A great program performed beautifully by the also beautiful Ginger.  She got a round of applause from the group even though we groaned and growled at her for making us so aware that we weren't nearly as on top of our stash as we could/should be. 

She began the program by asking a few pertinent questions.....
  • "Have you lost anything in your sewing room lately?" 
  •  "Have you bought a duplicate of a ruler, pattern, fabric, template because you couldn't find the one you knew was there (somewhere)?" 
  • "Can you find your cutting board or ironing surface underneath all the stuff?" 
 I answered each of her questions truthfully and that would be yes, yes and no!  SO ??

Shame-faced, I took a picture or two of 'the way we were'.   Man, did I ever get the picture!

Stash Management

I growled and snarled at her even more this morning as I took a look closer around me:  Me, the one who is so organized and gets so much accomplished because of my organizational skills!  I thought I was a good fabric manager when I put all my batik in one stack and all my hand dyes together and  even have a few solids nicely snuggled.  But Ginger shared some good information on how to fold  yardage so it stacks nicely, making the viewing more pleasing, but even more -  saving time in finding just the right fabric for the next project. 

Stash Management

And, I thought I was a great manager when I purchased all those bins in which to store my scraps and on-going projects and other things and stuff!  But Ginger says I need to do more than just put them in a bin.  She says if I took those scraps that are less than a fat-quarter size and pressed them then cut them into more usable sizes, then I would enjoy every one of those scraps to the limit.  For instance, Ginger says cut into 10" squares (you know....layer cake size) or 6" or 5" squares.  She says 2 1/2" strips are a must do.  From those you can quickly cut your 2 1/2" squares, or 2 1/2" by rectangles as needed. 

And, I thought my magazines and books were organized.  But, here was Ginger's food for thought.  How often do you need to keep the magazine when all you want in that one magazine is that one quilt pattern?   Simply tear out the pages you want to keep and make folders - a folder for modern quilts, one for mini quilts, one for totes and get the idea.   Your magazine stash is very quickly organized.  And, the same goes for books.  Keep the ones you love and pass on all the others. 

sewing studio magazine management

While in the process of pulling and thinking of how things could/should be organized, I found some fabric that had been lost....enough fabric for some border choices for my latest modern quilt on the design wall. 

Auditioning borders for my newest modern quilt - Marty Mason

Things are going to get organized and I will share when that happens.   

Give me time here! 
Oh, yes, life is good and will be so much better after I get my sewing studio managed. 
Thanks, Ginger.  You are the greatest. 


When I run with scissors ~ I finish a modern quilt

Just for fun, I spent a fast-paced two days at a quilt retreat with good friends, all traditional quilt makers,  and finished this little modern quilt top: 

All those traditionalist had a comment which I just let bounce right off my shoulders.  They swore that all the teasing was 'because they love me.'  They just don't understand!!  how I can enjoy the randomness of modern.  

"running with scissors" a modern quilt designed, pieced and quilted by Marty Mason

And on getting back home, diligently composed the back of the quilt on my design wall in the same flavor as the front of it.  I used every scrap of the same fabric to complete three odd-size 16-patches for the back, then surrounded them with my go-to-fabric.....chartreuse!  followed by a black and white leaf pattern.  No, it makes no design sense, but it pleases me to punch and back. 

"running with scissors" a modern quilt designed, pieced and quilted by Marty Mason

And then stitched my quilt back up one step at a time:

"running with scissors" a modern quilt designed, pieced and quilted by Marty Mason

Then, of course spent several hours with the quilting:  I can't wait for the group to see the end result and hear their newest comments.  I know they will be (un)impressed. 

"running with scissors" a modern quilt designed, pieced and quilted by Marty Mason

Since I usually, while in the making, arrive at a name for my quilts, I allowed a few possibilities to flit through my head as I stitched along....'sixteen quick steps' came to mind as did  'a mad dash' until I finally concluded by the time I finished the quilt back that I must have been 'running with scissors'.

Yep, that's it:  Running With Scissors, proudly pieced and quilted, in spite of the snickers of my great friends, by Marty Mason. 

"running with scissors" a modern quilt designed, pieced and quilted by Marty Mason


World Turning ~ A Lyric to Live By

I went to exercise this morning ~ and the world is still turning!

A lyric to live by:  Fleetwood Mac "World Turning"

Fleetwood Mac has the best music to exercise with and "World Turning" is one of my favorites.  Just the right speed, just the right beat to keep me moving.    So, yes, it's my Lyric To Live By for today.

and if the world keeps turning long enough
I just might get back into the exercise game again
sooner or later or
in the next couple of weeks! 


Inspired by the 9-Patch

It's a take on the traditional 9-patch block.  Some call it the double-disappearing 9-patch.  I call it inspired by the 9-patch: 

My first double-disappearing 9-patch was quickly put together for a quilt guild program a few months back.   I knew the room would be filled with traditional quilters, so I thought the multitude of scraps used in this one gave it a more traditional look.  

double disappearing 9-patch quilt by Marty Mason

as did the traditional quilt design.

double disappearing 9-patch quilt by Marty Mason

I was hooked on love after the very first double disappearing 9-patch.  I moved from my scrap bin to the black and white in my fabric stash.  Added just a smidge of red to jazz it up a bit.  First the more traditional layout:

double disappearing 9-patch quilt by Marty Mason
 double disappearing 9-patch quilt by Marty Mason

and since I had plenty of black and white, I put one together with a modern flair.  Oh, the fun of having no fabric placement rules to follow allowed all different size squares and rectangles that just made this one sing out loud.

modern double disappearing 9-patch quilt by Marty Mason

modern double disappearing 9-patch quilt by Marty Mason

When I won a great little charm pack there was just nothing left to do but add more fabric to complete this one. 

A modern double disappearing 9 patch quilt top by Marty Mason

It's so bright and cheery and I smile every time I see this modern paisley quilting.

A modern double disappearing 9 patch quilt top by Marty Mason

and then I ran out of white background fabric and also out of cream background fabric
so, what's left to do but to fill in with light gray
this one is now my favorite and is in the
hands of my favorite quilter
who works magic in the modern
quilting style

A modern double disappearing 9 patch quilt top by Marty Mason
Simple Inspiration
A Nine-Patch

Another "Lyric To Live By"

While I enjoy most all music, when I'm
not listening to classical, I lean toward the blues.....

A Muddy Waters lyric to live by........Marty Mason

This picture of muddy waters in Louisiana prompted my "lyrics to live by" edition.  "Baby, Please Don't Go" by the late McKinley Morganfield aka Muddy Waters

Sing on Muddy Waters....
but there's no amount of singing going
to stop this baby from flowing
on down to the Mississippi
into New Orleans.


Christmas: Time's A Coming....

Idea Pouch holds composition notebook, pens, pencils, crayons

As long as there is a child in my heart, there will be a little gift.   I do so enjoy making gifts for all the nieces and nephews in my family.  Come Christmastime, each one will have a little idea pouch to tug along.  I still have the pens and pencils to purchase, and of course, the wrapping to do, but except for the youngest (less than one year old) and the oldest (an almost grown teen) , the kids gifts are ready for the holidays.   The Michelle easy to follow and a perfect hold for the composition notebook and pens where each child can jot down that idea as it unfolds in their smart little heads. 

Idea Pouch holds composition notebook, pens, pencils, crayonsIdea Pouch holds composition notebook, pens, pencils, crayons
Idea Pouch holds composition notebook, pens, pencils, crayons
 I'm not sure what I'd be doing if I had nothing to do!  One thing I do know for sure is that Christmastime would be so slow in getting here if I had nothing to do but wait! 


I'm suppose to be seeking inspiration and sketching it out......

;however, I was distracted this morning with music in my head.  

"The Dancer"  a photoshop sketch original to Marty Mason

I'll resume my original plan in a moment or two.   In the meantime, let's dance! 

I've been traveling the state ~

Yes, I really have been traveling this summer, but this post isn't about really traveling the's about the Louisiana traveling quilt ten of us are block at a time. 

Mary sent me three blocks a couple of weeks ago and they languished on my design wall for a week!  I just couldn't figure out how to add to the blocks:::::::until I just did it::::::the unthinkable!  NOOOOO - I cut Mary's grove of three trees into.  Sorry, Mary, but I just had to do it! 

 Outdoors, anything outdoors...that's the theme for this quilt. How about outhouses...the ones we don't see anymore but were once a part of the outdoor landscape.    My outhouses fit beautifully  in amongst the grove of trees. And, setting each outhouse on unbleached muslin stopped the dread that all the other blocks' background whites weren't the same.  It's my way of saying, don't set yourself up for disaster.   All ten of us just don't shop at the same store and we certainly didn't compare notes on what fabric to use! 

I had some hand dyed fabric that I pieced together to add a stormy sky, but that was way too much so off that came.  I did finally use a small piece of the sky to make the blocks fit together. 

Louisiana Traveling Quilt for Carlie"  "Anything Outdoors" Theme

Next I surrounded the outhouses and some of the trees with flying geese.  What?  Give 'em a break!  They flew into Thibodeaux for a little R and R and had a little too much relaxation.   You betcha!  South Louisiana is noted for its good food and hearty drink. 

Inspired by Tula Pink's 100 block sampler quilt, I added my version of her block number 59 on the left corner, then using fabric from a bundle of ella blue "terra australis by emma jean jansen"  to make my log cabin block, I filled another blank hole. 

Louisiana Traveling Quilt for Carlie"  "Anything Outdoors" Theme

It's now in the mail to Glenda who can slice and dice at will and add even more  outdoor magic to  Carlie's  Louisiana Traveling Quilt.

Louisiana Traveling Quilt for Carlie"  "Anything Outdoors" Theme
and we passed a good time!