Shoo Fly

This quilt is from around the time that cheddar came into my life.  My friend Betsy in Texas introduced me to cheddar, then I had to have it in my fabric lines!

Cheddar is a beautiful neutral that makes a quilt sing.  Also Cheddar is gorgeous in the Fall – my favorite time of year.  My birthday is in October, I’ve always loved Fall – I’ve been told that is the link.

I named the quilt ‘Chocolate and Cheddar’, it is perfect for my favorite time of year – see I do make them for me and share them with you.   🙂

Chocolate & Cheddar doll/small quilt from JLW Club 6

Chocolate & Cheddar doll/small quilt from JLW Club 6

The corn is carved by a man in Lincoln, Nebraska – I bought it in an antique shop around 20 years ago – I think it is fun to use in a display in the Fall – no messy real corn cobs.  Redware candle holder from a potter in Pennsylvania, pumpkin from a craft store, the trencher bowl from an antique shop.  All sitting atop a blanket chest – a newly built piece and beautiful grain painted by an artist in Indiana.

Hope this history isn’t boring for you!    Just sharing my stuff.



My friend Betsy in Texas likes to make something with the leftovers from a quilt project.  This was a new concept to me a few years ago.

So after making ‘Somerset’ quit in JLW Club 7, I had leftover HST units.  I took the HST units and made several arrangements on a small press mat, I took pictures of each proposed layout.  I kept playing around with them, turning them different ways, playing with lights and darks.  This is the setting that won out.  A very sweet small quilt, and may I say a ‘favorite’!

'Leftovers' quilt from JLW Club 7

‘Leftovers’ quilt from JLW Club 7

The quilt is resting on an antique dough box that my friend Perry in PA grain painted for me.  The antique dough box was varnished wood and quite plain, we found it in an antique store.  Perry made it so beautiful and period appropriate with his grain painting skills – a one of a kind piece and love it.

The dog is a reproduction from a Folk Art Show – the artist found an antique stuffed dog in bad condition, took it apart for a pattern and made them to sell.  Perfect for old fashioned Jo!

sharing some favorite quilts – inspiration!

I really do use the quilts I make in our home.

I like to say –  I make them for me, then share them with you.

This sweet Courthouse Steps quilt was a project in my JLW Club 10.  I like to use it in the dry sink in our living room.  Quilts rotate around our home so I get to enjoy them, rather than stored in a cupboard or cabinet.  Well, of course I have quilts stored in a jelly cupboard, a large walnut cupboard in the family room, and the folky cabinet I blogged about that is at the studio – and it filled entirely too soon!

JLW Club 10 - Courthouse Steps in the dry sink in our living room.

JLW Club 10 – Courthouse Steps in the dry sink in our living room.

Shown with some of the items I’ve collected since 1988.  Spent years collecting in antique shops, mostly in Ohio and Pennsylvania on my trips back and forth to the Folk Art Shows back east where I would sell my little hand quilted quilts.

Of course I shopped at the Folk Art Shows where I was able to buy wonderful reproductions – redware, yellowware, woven towels, loomed blankets and throws, carvings, hooked rugs, pewter, our windsor chairs were handmade in PA, he carved the seats himself, beautiful grained painted furniture, and on and on – so many memories in the furnishings in our home and I know the people who made them.

Things and times have changed a lot and the things I love have become scarce.  I’m very grateful for what I have.

a little more show and tell

This summer I sewed these sweet little blocks – sometimes called Uneven Nine Patch or Puss in the Corner.

It took me a while to determine the setting fabric, but after several auditions, this one won – it was in ‘Toasted’ group last winter. I also decided that since the blocks are so tiny at 2″ finished, that I would make it a summer spread.  Meaning, no batting.  I selected a backing fabric, sewed around the four sides and left an opening to turn it right side out, and whip the opening closed.  I love it on this antique doll cradle.

antique doll cradle with hood, dress with this sweet little summer quilt I made.

antique doll cradle with hood, dressed with this sweet little summer quilt I made.


a little show and tell

This quilt was sewn late last Spring, it is now quilted and bound.  It was made with fabrics from Madison Manor and Dovetails 1 batiks.

I used the 1″ x 2″ Bloc_Loc ruler to square up the Flying Geese.  I do not plan to pattern this quilt, just showing how beautiful the Jo prints go with the Jo Dovetails 1 batiks.  Ok, it sort of surprised me too, but then I should know it would work, right?  I felt it would work, and was so happy when it did work out even better than I thought.  Are you laughing with me?

Wild Goose Chase quilt - Madison Manor and Dovetails 1 batiks

Wild Goose Chase quilt – Madison Manor and Dovetails 1 batiks

And a closer look:

Wild Goose Chase - Madison Manor and Dovetails 1 batiks - close up

Wild Goose Chase – Madison Manor and Dovetails 1 batiks – close up

I love what the stripe does for the quilt plus the beautiful paisley border.  The batiks add a softness that is beautiful and I find interesting to be sewing outside my normal box and liking what I see.

Don’t be thinking old dog, new tricks, OK?

We should all try something new from time to time.  Are you ready?   !!!!

FYI – I did pre-wash the batiks with the Shout color catchers – was advised to do it by my friend Candy in KC.  The batiks are soft before washing and divine after.



FYI – contacting Jo

When you contact me through the contact form on my website, you enter your email address, after you have filled in the captcha and hit send, you will receive a confirmation of the email you sent to me.

If you do not receive a confirmation email, it means you didn’t enter your email address correctly.  Then –  on my end, I’ve written the reply and it bounces back to me causing a little frustration.

I do answer my emails – and yes it is ‘me’ answering my email.  I do not have office staff other than the fur kids and well . . . . they aren’t reliable.

The reason I’m posting this notice as it is happening too much, and obviously it isn’t my fault.  So please be careful when entering ‘your’ email address.

Thanks so much!

One other comment this morning – I receive ‘lots’ of emails wanting fabric, ordering fabric from me or asking where to find a certain fabric.  Simple answer is ‘I don’t know’.  I’m not a quilt shop.  I’m not an Andover employee, I have no idea what shops order my fabrics or what they have on hand.

Do a ‘google search’ – enter the sku number, including color designation that you are looking for, hopefully you can find it.

Or try:              a website of around 200 quilt shops, enter the sku number you are wanting and perhaps one of the shops will have have it for you.

This post is in the hope it saves you some time and me too.  Thanks so much for reading it!


fun trip to Tennessee!

I flew to Knoxville, Tennessee on Labor Day, to attend my friend Cindy Blackberg’s seminar ‘Handwork in the Smokies’.  This is Cindy’s last year to offer seminars, she has a website, you will be able to order her stamps for hand piecing, patterns, books, notions and stay tuned for a mysterious surprise in 2014!   Cindy also has a Blog and a Yahoo Group to keep in touch.

Since I’ve known Cindy for 20 years, I really had to go to her seminar and stitch with her and visit.  I got to brush up on embroidery with Cindy, it has been years and years.  The name of her quilt design for the seminar is Poke Berry Baskets.   See it here:

Below is my completed block.  Isn’t it pretty!  The basket portion is hand pieced.

Poke Berry Basket block from Cindy Blackberg's seminar.

Poke Berry Basket block from Cindy Blackberg’s seminar.

I also completed the embroidery for two more blocks.   🙂

It was a good week because I read two books, one flying to Knoxville, the second one flying back to Omaha.  I was able to finish them due to 3 hour layovers between flights.

Read these two books - I like mysteries and light reading

Read these two books – I like mysteries and light reading

It was a good stitching week for me, I was able to stitch some more hexi flowers together, I now have 30 of the hexi flowers with added path completed and stacked below.  I have 14 more hexi flowers covered and ready to stitch together, need to cover some more path hexis to complete.  I will  be cutting out some more hexi flowers, this will end up being a larger project than a doll quilt for a change.  The perfect take along project for me.

stack of 20 hexi flowers with path, the 14 little bundles of flowers waiting to be sewn, need to cut out and cover more path hexis

stack of 30 hexi flowers with path, the 14 little bundles of flowers waiting to be sewn, need to cut out and cover more path hexis, I don’t have enough as you can see.

On another note – I’ve been gifted with some beautiful pincushions over the years.  I really ‘love’ having a pincushion collection.  I do rotate them out, and I do use them, I get to think of the lovely ladies who made them for me.

You can see one of my newest gifts, a hexi flower pincushion in a zink lid,  in fall colors – perfect!  Life is good in Nebraska.

these are some of my pincushion collection

these are some of my pincushion collection

Hope you have been able to get some stitching in too!

Now, back to work.  My Fall handwork retreat is in less than three weeks!