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Featured Quilt of the Week! Sunwashed Summer

Sunwashed Summer was a quilt I designed a while back, it is featured in my book “Perfect Fit Pieced Borders”.  My quilting buddy Lynne A. helped by doing a lot of the applique for this piece.  She is always busy with projects of her own, but made time to help me out and she is a real applique expert!  I am grateful for her help!

I was inspired by the lovely colors in a simple bowl of fruit for this project.  The applique is easy and fast and would make a great beginner project.  I imagine it on a patio table set for “Girls Night In” with a fresh garden salad, a loaf of great bread, and a pitcher of raspberry lemon drops!  Want to join me?  Come on over, we’ll sit down and have a good chat!

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Winter Wonderland!–er, Happy Spring!

We woke up this morning to snow like I have never seen in Eugene! Four hours later it is continuing to snow. I LOVE IT!! It’s not exactly a blizzard of my youth in Minnesota, but beautiful none the less. The neighborhood kids are out with sleds, schools and businesses are closed. All my morning patients cancelled, so I don’t have to go in to work until 1pm. Maybe that will change too. In the meantine, I am quilting and enjoying the view! I love the drama of this picture, the only color is in the fire hydrant! What do you think of my big birch tree? It’s my favorite, reminds me of home, my sweet Mom, and the lake cabin. Seeing it covered with snow just plain makes me feel good! I think I’ll go have a cup of tea now and stare out the window a bit :).

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The Applique Society Newsletter

What fun!  I was featured in The Applique Society Newsletter this month.  It is great newsletter with so much information inside.  Lots of great articles, give-aways, book reviews, shopping, challenges and they even include a couple of patterns each month! 

Click on this link: to read the complete article about Border Techniques where they interviewed Kari Carr and me for our ideas.  I especially talked about how I use pieced borders–my specialty!

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“A New York Minute!” Featured Quilt of the Week!!

Quick as a “New York Minute”, this quilt can be finished in time for that last-minute gift.  I’ve made so many of these fun quilts and have begun to think of them as my quilt “missionaries”, sent out all over the country to keep the babies warm!  It’s a perfect size (40″ x 50″) for a crib, or for a small throw/lap quilt.  The secret to finding a good collection of coordinating fabrics is to choose the stripe first.  You’ll find it in my new book Perfect Fit, Pieced Borders.   Look in the gallery for a few more pictures of this quilt in different fabrics.

Try it, betcha can’t make just one!

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“Stargazing” – Featured Quilt of the week!


The Milky Way, the Big Dipper, and the Little Dipper seem to fill the night sky and light up the castle in a dreamland.  This fun appliqued and pieced project was inspired by my friend Tonye Belinda Phillips, a wonderful applique artist.  Be sure to check out her web site and see for yourself why she and her work are so inspiring.  I was also thinking of a trip I had taken with my husband to Crater Lake, Oregon.  We stayed at the historic lodge and were up late into the evening stargazing at a breath-taking sky.  The early morning sunrise over the rim of the crater was equally impressive.  So much to be inspired by, so little time!  Of course this is a pattern from my latest book, “Perfect Fit Pieced Borders”.  It uses some fun embillishments including wool, velvet and organza as well as quilting cotton, and then is finished with a fun quilt design.  Hope you will try a version of your own!

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Featured quilt of the week!

The Drama Club

I am very lucky to have many quilting friends who inspire me!  Judy Dillree is one talented quilter and best of all I get to call her my friend.  She designed this outrageously fun quilt just after my first book (PIECED TO FIT) came out and agreed to let me put it into the second book.  It’s included in Perfect Fit Pieced Borders.  I had such a fun time quilting it and choosing thread colors.  Now I’ve been able to see it done in other color schemes, and different applique techniques, but this one is the masterpiece.  Judy you are a gem in my life, I appreciate the many times you’ve let me quilt your quilts, the time we’ve spent together talking and laughing and quilting.  It is a treasure to have you as a friend for 3+ decades!

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Not ready to give up Christmas yet!

Check out this awesome Christmas quilt!  Makes me wish it were mine, and I have the perfect spot to hang it!  The quilt top was very well made by my friend Pat.  She used a TON of scrappy fabrics which make it so interesting to look at, and the narrow “logs” in the Log Cabin blocks give it a lot of texture.  Then the quilting was added, and you can see how much fun I had doing that!!  The finished piece is just outstanding!  I hope I get to see it again someday, maybe hanging in a quilt show?!  (hint-hint) 🙂

I was able to work on this quilt in the beginning of December and kick-start that holiday feeling, and I’m enjoying it again now, stretching the holidays out as long as I can!

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Feathered Stars!

I’ve had the pure pleasure of working on a Feathered Star quilt for a friend.  Besides having known each other for about 3 decades, we’ve worked together, and now have quilting in common too!

As you can see, the Feathered Star is a masterpiece!  Perfectly pieced, and I know this because I was “up close and personal” with it for many hours while I completed the quilting.  Another thing that puts this quilt in the masterpiece category is the adventurous use of scrappy fabrics pulled together with the neutral background and a killer focal fabric used for the border, not to mention the polka dot sashing! There are some surprises in there and lots to look at in this quilt.  Careful and consistent pressing can’t be seen on the surface but contribute more than you realize to the quality of the finished quilt.

My hat’s off to you Carolyn!  Congratulations, and may you have many years of that warm quilty feeling with this work of art!

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Sheila’s New Book Has Arrived!

Sheila's New BookMy new book Perfect Fit Pieced Borders has just been released by Martingale & Co. It’s exciting to see the great photography, graphics and clear instructions.

You already know from my previous patterns that I like to piece the quilt right out to the edge; that includes the borders!  Some designs have traditional looking borders, some have what I call finishing elements that give the quilt a finished look without borders.  Be sure to look at the slide show to see the fun designs.  It really has been an honor to work with Martingale & Co. to develop this book as they are easy to work with and have allowed me to have so much control.  Of course the quilting is very important to me as a longarm quilter, and I was able to include quilting designs for each quilt that also included photography of the quilting so you could get some ideas of how to quilt your version!

Pieced borders will change the look of a quilt, making it more interesting and exciting by adding a surprising finish.  What I love most about quilting is what I call the “layers” of design: choosing the fabrics, cutting the shapes, piecing, creating appliqué designs, sewing everything together, adding borders, quilting, and the final statement of the binding.  Each layer relates to the others, and this always teaches me something and keeps me interested.  Every step along the way can be fun and creative, and I think traditionally the borders are often overlooked.  I always take the time to consider border options.  Almost every quilt can benefit from pieced borders; they make a quilt extra special.

I hope you love this book and make several of the quilts!


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My Quilting Life

For those of you who haven’t met me, or never even heard of me, and for those of you who have, but are still curious, I’m a professional quilter! For me that means I started out as a longarm quilter, learning by the seat of my pants for the first year or so. After that I was lucky to be able to attend my first Machine Quilters Showcase, a longarm convention, and was bowled over, overwhelmed and inspired! I had seen the light and opened my eyes to the awesome possibilities of longarm quilting. That enlightenment continues to this day, more than ten years later.

I’ve been lucky to have quilted about 1800 quilts, taught longarm classes nationally and locally, designed quilts, authored a book (a second book will be ready for Spring Quilt Market 2011), developed a line of quilt patterns, taught piecing and project classes and best of all admired, touched, bought, stashed, stored, sewn and generally loved thousands of yards of fabric! What a life! I’ve been lucky to have met and learned from so many quilters, some famous and some not so famous, but all so interesting and talented, their energy has been inspiring and infectious.

I have lots of ideas, and can’t wait for the next inspiration. Since I started out as a longarm quilter, the quilting is very important to me, so just let me warn you, you’ll be hearing a lot more about that!