Market & Festival 2013 - A Quick Review

Finally we're home again!  Glad to have everything here after Quilt Market & Quilt Festival.  Now that the last step is over, I thought you'd enjoy just a few photos.

Booth, Market 2013

You can see our three Blocks of the Month and along the back wall our quilt samples for new patterns.  We always take the BOM's because there are always so many people who have never seen us before!  Our new quilts proved popular, especially the Rose Garden quilt with the yoyos!  It's on the left of the back wall.  Then Picnic in the Park, and Summer Day, which you can see in the next photo in the corner.

Booth Market 2013 Wilma & Morganne

Wilma, in the blue, and Morganne, on right, answering questions for interested shop owners.  You can see our Ornaments trimming the Christmas tree.  And our Flowers are now a classic!

Market 2013 booth

And the other end of the booth.  The table holds all our free materials for shop owners to take with them and at the far end our sales sheets and, of course, CANDY!

Market 2013 Morganne & Wilma 3

Morganne (my granddaughter) & Wilma straightening and resupplying.  They are camera-shy and hard to get a picture of!  But they are experienced and indispensible!

Just a couple pictures of some of the displays.  This one was amazing by Shamrock Fabrics!  A whole barnyard full of animals made from their fabrics, complete with hay bale, campfire and fence!  Notice the chickens back of the sheep and the little mouse to the left edge of the hay bale!

Shamrock Fabrics display

Here you can see the pig and piglets a little better.  So creative!

Pig- Shamrock Fabrics display 2013

Just a LITTLE of Aurifil Threads miniature golf course.  I later saw people actually playing!   Very fun to watch!

Market 2013 Aurifil Threads display

Here are some of the darling samples made from various collections by Riley Blake Designs!

Market 2013 Riley Blake Fabrics



Look at the yoyo on this darling dress



Now we must make the change to Quilt Festival!  

Because of our time frame, we tear down and set up at the same time!  A double booth at Market becomes a single booth for Festival, so half of certain things in the double booth must be packed and taken back to the studio while other things are moved over to the single booth area for Festival.  Then we must add so many quilts, tables, patterns, embellishment kits, fabric kits, tree ornaments and baskets & baskets to hold everything in.  It's a real job!  In 5 hours, we've done the majority of the change- at least the hard part, which is positioning and hanging quilts.  The flowers were set up in the beginning of Market to be in 2 sections, so we just took down the part hanging in the first half and took it home, leaving the half needed for Festival already in place and ready to go!  We tweaked a little, but not much!


We're mostly all alone for a while!  You can see the emply space on the left of our set-up where the other half of our Market booth used to be!  Much of our inventory for the tables is underneath them, and tomorrow we'll be bringing in a lot more, so that the entire space is filled with enough to keep us resupplied as we sell things.


Here's a photo down the aisle.  The big boxes you see are waiting to be picked up by forklifts and shipped away.  The changeover leaves a big mess, but after all night this night and most of the next day tomorrow, work continues to set up for the new configuration for Festival, move out all shipping containers, re-lay the carpet and get ready for people to set up the individual booths again late in the day tomorrow.  Festival preview night begins the next day!


This is a view across from our booth!  All this trash will be gone when we come back later tomorrow. . . . . really amazing when you consider all there is to do!  It will be beautiful!


Here's the end result of our efforts!  




We were really loaded with good things!  And everyone loved our Christmas tree.  The bags hanging to the left of the tree are these great mesh bags, brightly colored, in many different sizes!  They are so handy and there is a size for every need!  We'll have some on the website as soon as possible.  They make great Christmas presents for a sewing or traveling friend.

image from http://aviary.blob.core.windows.net/k-mr6i2hifk4wxt1dp-13110805/aae48b6c-9024-4a41-abd7-4b5b3644a626.jpg

We met so many interesting and wonderful people!  And we've seen so many friends!  Thanks to all who came by the booth!  We're looking forward to the success of the year ahead and to sharing new designs with you!

Always Yours,





Quilt Market 2013

It is always such an uplifting experience to be at Market!  We've been so busy this first day that it's been hard to take any pictures, but tomorrow that's one of my priorities.  Will try to show you how beautiful everything looks and some of the creative things people are doing!  It's just amazing!

Just checking in and will be back tomorrow with a few photos!

i'm Always Yours,



Rose Garden Quilt Kits are Ready!

It's sweet, bright & fun with yoyos!  We think you'll like this next new quilt kit!


AND in keeping with our distaste of plastic bags, it is contained in this very darling bag.  See if you agree . . . .

Rose Garden full kit

A Yoyo button (with a button) tops off this bag, made of the same fabrics in the quilt.  The 4" buttonhole opens the bag so you can see . . . . 

Rose Garden kit contents

The beautiful contents from the High Street collection from Moda Fabrics.

There were fun steps to get to the end - each one worth a picture . . . .


These stems made from straight grain strips with a 1/4" bias tape maker - so fast!  And then . . .

The 1/2" plus just cut strips.  But let me show you the yoyos underneath . . . .

Aren't they pretty?  This is what yours will look like!  Made with the Clover Jumbo Yoyo Maker.  So if you put these together you have . . .

A rose garden all ready to applique!  There will shortly be a tutorial showing you how to stitch down the stem and the pattern talks about different ways to do it, too.

The Rose Garden pattern has a bonus, too!  This sweet Baby Quilt version . . .

ROSEGARDEN-baby-cut-out-picweb2As you can see, it's made just like the full size quilt, but with only 12 yoyo roses and the border has little pink roses all around with the pink inner border, too.  And, yes, we have kits for this one, too, and we'll show you about these coming right up!  The packaging is so-o-o cute for these.

You can get the full size Rose Garden Quilt Kit on the website right now.  Go take a look!

See you soon and Always Yours,



Live, Love & Laugh Fabric Kits are Available Again!

Hope you're having a great day!  While we get ready for International Quilt Market next week and International Quilt Festival the following week, we're completing our fabric kits, one by one. 

We thought you'd like to know we've put together a few more fabric kits for our Live, Love & Laugh quilt! 

Live, Love & Laugh Kits

They're packaged in these great bags (a little different from the earlier kits) made from the fabric in the quilt, and you can use them afterward for so many things.  We'll have these at Festival, along with many other items, so if you're attending, be sure and stop by to say 'hi' at Booth #147!

You'll have the panel & fabric for the top and binding for this 46" x 64" quilt.  There isn't a happier, more whimsical quilt anywhere!  See for yourself!

Livelovelaughfreequiltinstructions2 1
In your kit, you will have all the textures only for the squares border, so it will look a little different, but we think even better!  Otherwise everything is just the same as our photo here.  Directions are included, of course.  You can purchase these right now on the website!

See you in a bit with more fabric kits!




Click! Camera Quilt Kit

We have our next quilt kit ready for you!  It has a very up-to-date theme about cameras and picture-taking and the out-of-doors.  Simple and delightful!

It's called Click!

Click! quilt

Maybe you saw the quilt in the August issue of American Patchwork & Quilting. We have a kit for the same quilt, using the same fabrics, S'More Love from Moda Fabrics.  Such a great fabric line for the theme!  Full of camping images, including a stylish looking retro car with camper from the 50's!  Fish, rocks, trees, leaves, owls, sunsets, etc., throughout the collection make it a perfect choice for this picture-taking quilt!

Here's the kit we put together.  It makes the very quilt you see above!  Just like the one in the magazine!




Kit includes the magazine with pattern


The quilt is 61 1/2" x 59 1/2".  So it's great for hanging or curling up with in the chair.  We're just about to have the season for curling up with a quilt and a good book!  This one will make you think of your summer vacation!

If you've followed us much, you know one of our favorite things to do is come up with interesting and fun packaging for our kits, and this one is no exception!  What do you think?





If you order the kit, this bag is yours, too!  No two are alike, made from all the fabrics you see in the kit.  So fun for hiding that UFO you can't get to yet (of course, you have to make the quilt & empty the bag, first!), or anything else you want to do.  And if you can't quite get to this quilt for a while, you'll never have to guess where it is!  Maybe this would make a great gift for that 'tween who's hard to buy for!  Our thanks to American Patchwork & Quilting for allowing us to use the block this way.

You'll find the kit with all the details on the website.  And we have just a few backing sets for it, too.  Go take a look, and don't wait to order; they won't last long!

There are more coming, so toward that end, we'll get back to work!  Back very soon with lots more to show you!

Always Yours,



Fall Quilt Market & Festival 2013

Doesn't it feel like Fall!  And time for Quilt Market & Quilt Festival here in Houston!  We are getting things together for BOTH of these shows; yes, both of them.  For the first time we'll be exhibiting at Festival, too.  

Make a note of our Booth # 147, which stays the same, so we'll be in the same spot for both shows.  

We're so looking forward to seeing you at Market!  We love to see old friends & make new ones, and we have some new things to show you!  And if you haven't tried one of our Blocks of the Month, you can take a very close look at our models - they're amazing up close - and ask any questions you'd like.  We'll be prepared to send you home with a set of patterns, buttons, threads or embellishment kits to get your sample started.

For Festival we have some very special kits you can buy, all packaged up in the most wonderful ways!  Not to mention patterns & patterns of ours for you to see - and probably many you've never seen, since no quilt shop carries everything we have.  And some great bags for you to buy for projects & notions, and our Christmas tree will be full of ornaments from one of our favorite manufacturers, and on, and on.....  So come see and say Hi!

We're just about to add some more kits to the website, so keep tuned!  Good to talk to you!

Back soon because I'm Always Yours,



Lullaby Lamb Fabric Kits

Hi, there!  It's another beautiful day here in Texas - just a little too hot, still!  But I know it's going to improve soon.  I read Susan Branch's blog and she has pictures of beautiful, colored leaves and COOLER temperatures, so I know it will happen here eventually.

In the Spring I always try to encourage those to the north that it's warming, flowers are blooming, trees are leafing . . . . so they know it's on its way.  Now it's time for the reverse, and I know it will take a little time for the cool to reach us a-l-l-l-l the way down here, so it helps me be patient to know it's on the way!

MEANTIME, we've been stitching and cutting and packaging and photographing.  And now we have something to show you - the first of our Fabric Kits are ready for you to buy!  

Our Lullaby Lamb Fabric Kits!!  We think these are so cute!  Not only is this the most darling baby/children's quilt, but you can have it in the cutest little basket ever!  What do you think?

Lullaby Lamb Kit - Girls' Version

That's Beatrix and she's trying to tell you all about the Girls' Version; she's very enthusiastic!  I'll translate.  But first, maybe you'd like to see the Boys' Version.

Lullaby Lamb Kit - Boys' Version

 Oh, yes, here's Harry tying to tell us all about the Boys'!  Maybe I'll just tell you about the little baskets and we'll go back to Beatrix & Harry in a second.

The baskets are made of sheet metal and VERY sturdy!  I just love their wheels (stationary), and there are touches of glitter and sparkle all over.  One butterfly sits on the pull handle and the other one on top of the basket handle, looking like little jewels!  They are about 12" x 4" x 12".  After you make your quilt, you can fill them with a baby bath set, some darling little clothes, or so many other things.  Give it filled as a gift itself, or it can accompany your Lullaby Lamb Quilt filled with receiving blankets!  Now wouldn't that make someone smile!  Or maybe you'd like to keep it yourself!

Here you can see them when they're not chock full of fabric . . . . 

The Girls' kit can come in all 3, but the Boys' kit will be in either light purple or yellow.  There is a limited supply.  When they're gone, the kits will be packaged differently, but still not in a plastic bag, if we can help it!  Looking for alternatives now, because we know these won't last long!  



Here's a little closer view of the basket.  If you click on the photo, you can see a larger version, and you can see how cute the wheels are!









Now you can see the little butterflies with their sparkle!







The original Lullaby Lamb quilt, pictured on the cover of the pattern.  Of course the fabrics you'll be getting are just out, so it will look a little different, but still in keeping with ours.  We believe you'll be pleased!  Notice the bell & ribbon bow (not included) . . . a simple touch, but makes a wonderful presentation!

Now I'll translate what Beatrix was trying to tell us!  


The Celebration fabrics for the Girls' Kit, starting with the outer border fabric on the left, pinks for chenille, lavender for lamb head, etc., white background & white border squares and 3 extra fabrics for inner border squares; binding varies but from the same fabrics.  With this outer border from Bunny Hill Designs, your little chenilled lamb will be surrounded by . . . . cute little lambs!

You'll also receive 1 skein pink floss for face details, 1 skein pearl cotton to tie the middle of each curlycue in the chenille, and of course, the Lullaby Lamb pattern.  Purchase from the Website!



Here's the original Lullaby Lamb Quilt in blue for all our darling little boys!  Notice the bell & ribbon bow again. Nice finish!  Just like lambs in a meadow!

You'll be receiving fabrics from the Celebration line from Bunny Hill Designs from Moda Fabrics, just as with the girls' version. They have an up-to-date look, but still a traditional feel.  

Yes, of course, Harry, I'll tell them everything you said!


Celebration fabrics for Boys' Kit, starting with the outer border on the left, red gingham for both binding & inner border squares, white background square & white border squares, dark & light blue for chenille body, extra fabrics in yellow & green gingham (this also for nose/feet) for border squares, and light blue for head, etc., and light & dark blue double for border squares, too.  Love that red gingham binding!  Doesn't it sound baby boy perfect?!  For a little boy, too!

You'll also have 1 skein dark blue floss for face embroidery, 1 skein dark blue pearl cotton to tie each curlycue in lamb chenille, and of course the Lullaby Lamb pattern.

 Here's a closeup of the chenille in the Lamb body.  It is compact and interesting, isn't it?  And it FEELS wonderful!  Little ones love it's softness!

This one's been washed just 3 or 4 times because it's a sample quilt.  But my youngest granddaughter had this quilt as a baby quilt and it's been washed quite a number of times, without any differemce in the look.  This stands up very well to little ones!  

Beatrix wants me to remind you that both versions of the Kit include the pattern and are shipped in a cellophane bag, so the contents stay together until it arrives at your house!

Between Beatrix, Harry and me, I think that more than covers it!  Go to the Website to purchase these! 

We have other kits coming soon, so bookmark or subscribe for the latest updates - kits are limited!  

As Always Yours,


P.S. Harry wants you to know that he and Beatrix will be back, along with some of their friends, to introduce future baby & seasonal items!


Breakfast with Fiesta

Hi, Everyone!  

I was making my breakfast as usual this morning and I had to hunt for my new favorite pan!  I mean, I have 2 now, so am I going to have to have 1 more?  With just 2 of us, the dishwasher is never full before I need everything in it again!  I know, I could handwash, but . . . 

My breakfast is super simple every morning, so I like having super simple things to fix it with.  And this new pan is just exactly perfect for my purpose - about 5 minutes from my first yawn in the kitchen to everything on the plate, the first cup of a fresh brewed pot of coffee in the same 5 minutes, my favorite everyday dishes (Fiesta) and a beautiful napkin (it's just so cheery), and only 1 pan to put in the sink!  5 minutes and I'm heading to my library (a very cushy spot) with my cheery plate full, a delicious cup of coffee and my iPad.  Perfect!

When everything's over, I head back to the kitchen and there's only ONE pan in the sink to greet me.  Prior to this I have used large & small skillets for my eggs, until my Mom found a little, bitty 1-egg pan at the grocery store.  But it was really Too Small.  I like 2 eggs for breakfast and this one was definitely 1-egg!  So I continued to keep an eye out . . . . . and sure enough, I was looking at a Fiesta dinnerware display and there it was . . . Fiesta cookware - and there was this (very pretty) little skillet about twice as deep as the 1-egg one!  I bought two!  Here it is, in case you need one, too . . . .

Fiesta's littlest skillet with dinnerware


Fiesta's 5" skillet in turquoise to match their dinnerware

 I think their logo is fabulous!  So very 30's, so very stylish!  So far, this comes in 4 of their colors to match their dinnerware.  For the handle, you need one of their beautiful and functional mitts.  In keeping with my desire for minimal mess, I just use the napkin I have for my meal!

Fiesta 5" skillet
Only 2 eggs here, but could hold 3!


You can see that it's a 2-egger, and I even added some butter & diced onion before the eggs for a little extra flavor.  This little pan is not only perfect in size, but it's ceramic so absoutely nothing sticks to it.  No scrubbing and no coating to come off in little bits as you use it! 




I think there will be other uses for it too, that I'll discover in time.  Melting butter in it will be really handy!

Now I'll admit it's a challenge to turn the eggs over.  I only have 1 small spatula and it's not small enough  . . .  Hmmm . . .  guess I'll have to keep my eye out for just the right spatula . . . 




A Book Break

So . . . . while our fingers & machines are stitching unendingly, I thought I'd try to distract you with some entertainment.  No, No, not that!  Not even a movie - enough of those!  Nothing on a screen.  How about a BOOK!?  I've got one that will make you drift away day-dreaming.  

This is the kind of book you'll want to read right next to the fireplace in your recliner, so throw your legs over an arm - get comfy now - and be sure your cream soda & popcorn are right there, and you'll probably need a down-filled pillow for something later (a shoulder or an elbow) . . . . (OK, go get your phone, but only because it's so terrible to have to move when everything's this perfect).  Now then, got everything?   Oh, yes, THE BOOK!

It's Susan Branch's year-long+ awaited "A Fine Romance" !!!!!!  It's finally here, and I ordered a copy.  You can see it below:


What a delight to see, read . . . did I say read?!   It is written in her own special hand - yes, as usual, the whole thing - and is FULL of photos of England and her totally delightful watercolors!   If you've read her blog (or follow it, as I do) you'll understand what I mean by saying you feel like you're right there and haven't missed a thing by being in your recliner!  Written like a journal, it takes you on a journey through the English countryside in search of insight into the lives of our most loved authors & artists, stopping at pubs, antique shops, gardens, homes and much more along the way.  It's a look at a part of England that happened centuries earlier, yet you see those very places in her pictures & watercolors.  She captures the feeling of a time long past, much of which is amazingly still in the present to enjoy.  But then that IS England!


A couple pages with pictures, her handwriting & touches of watercolor.  She provides a wonderful, interactive Appendix on her website, you won't want to miss it.  You can read it as you go (there are painted stars in the text where the Appendix contains further information, pictures, videos, etc.), or read through first in order not to interrupt the prose, then be sure to look at the Appendix later.


See her beautiful watercolor?  You can get her book on her website right here.  You can read her blog to find the closest place to you for her book signings & so many other things.  On her blog yesterday, she & Joe - the book is about their meeting & romance (charming) and their common desire to travel to England by ship - arrived at a small town for a book signing.  They parked at the town hall where she was scheduled to speak, but they noticed there was hardly anyone in sight; the streets were empty!  Now they began to wonder if anyone had come.  When they stepped inside, they realized Everyone had come - and emptied the streets!

The book is full of quotes and endearing comments, just like her blog . . . . just like her!  You won't want to miss it.  I am treating myself to a series of 'reads' where I find a quiet moment and plop into my chair for another installment.  Not too fast, I want to have something to look forward to for the next plop.  I'm already sorry it will be over, but thoroughly enjoying the now!  Part of that for me is having lived in England for a couple years.  We lived in a little village called Patrington in the north of England in Yorkshire.  I had the blessed opportunity to see village after village, take picture after picture (not as digital as today), and meet person after person.  I have not gotten over it.  If I had lots of $, I'd buy a cottage (or larger) around Thirsk or in the Dales and spend the summer there and the winter here in Texas!  That would be a dream come true!

So much for day-dreaming - see I told you it would happen!  So I'll leave you with this last picture - of Susan's book and one of the antique clocks we purchased in England.  It's now 124 years old!  


Don't they look perfect together?

Yours Always!



Something New!

Such a beautiful day here!  We ate breakfast outside in downtown Houston and didn't want to leave! 

Always, right in the middle of August, there is this subtle change that takes place. Have you noticed it, too?  It's still hot, dry, but we just b-e-g-I-n to see some mild fronts find their way al-l-l-l the way down here again.  As gradually as they leave in the spring, they return in the fall. Even though I talk about it coming (as if talking about its' coming might relieve some of the heat of July) and expect it to happen, I'm always surprised when it arrives!

Last week when Wilma was cutting fabric and I was writing patterns, trying to keep ahead of her, I remembered something I'd been wanting to try.  So later that afternoon I had the studio to myself and a cutting table all my own and thought I'd give it a try. This is an idea that Mary Jo Yackley showed me one time when I took a quilt top for her to quilt (she quilts all my models & personal quilts - not that I have many personal ones any more what with Daisy & Dell - and she's Te-e-e-e-riffic!).  Anyway, she said she wouldn't mind if I shared it with you.  So that afternoon I gave it a try - see what you think . . . . .

Bag finished
A Bag for Your Quilt!

OK.  I won't make you guess - it's a bag for your quilt! :)  You can make one for every quilt!      And the fabric on the bag is one of the fabrics used in the quilt!  Isn't her idea great!?  Now I'll never have to look to know what's in there, AND it is protected from light, dust & contact with acidy surfaces by perfect, breathable, cotton fabric. 

I'll have a new pattern out in the fall for the quilt rolled up inside this one! 

Here's how the bottom end looks . . . .

  Bag end

It's just a big yoyo!  And really easy to do. This took me about 2 minutes by hand. I'll show you how a little later!

Here's the top end  . . . . .

Bag top

Just a simple casing with a ribbon to gather it over the top of the quilt.  Since the casing is wider than the ribbon, you don't even have to run it through at the end. Just lay it in the fold as you're stitching the casing and when it's done, just tie a bow!  I loved that because I can never seem to find a safety pin when I need one!

This is just a prototype, and I'll want to improve a couple details. But it only took me 30 minutes to finish from the time I had the idea!  A little measuring . . . a little cutting . . . a little stitching.

Bag empty

After I folded the quilt in half lengthwise & rolled it up, I was able to use the wof (width of fabric) for its length, so it only took about 5/8 yd. Though it fit just fine (pins and all because the binding was pinned on) I would want a little more "wiggle" room on others, so maybe 3/4 yd would have been better.

Yes, it's NEW, but as soon as it's "New & IMPROVED", I'll show you how to measure and finish one for any quilt you may have.

It's good talking with you again, and remember I'm . . .

Always Yours,



Coming Soon! Fabric Kits!

Hello to everyone!  It's Friday!  And though I work in some way or another all the time (including doodling, thinking up a new design while loading the dishwasher, taking notes about things that inspire me, . . .), I'm declaring a 'lite' day today!  Lite Frid'y!  How about you?

As you can see below we have been working at some fun things - cutting up fabric for kits!  It's so exciting to design, plan, order, receive, unpack, cut, fold & package all this beautiful fabric.  We have several kits planned, so I'll show you as we go along (Hint:  they will not all be from our own designs).  Some will be up on the website fairly soon and others a little later.

All of us agree that packaging makes all the difference, so we're avoiding the usual kit in a plastic bag.  We're betting you'll enjoy something different - in most cases reusable - and that it'll make you smile, oooh & aaah!  So keep checking back!

We started with this . . . . .



And after a bunch of others like it, we began to have this . . . . .



And some more like this . . . . .


We have all this to work with for 2 NEW patterns . . . . .



And this, too . . . .


How darling it that little lamb?!  With that in mind, you won't be surprised when I say that we will have both boys' and girls' baby quilt kits from our Lullaby Lamb pattern.  This is Anne Sutton's Celebration fabric line from Moda.  Just as soon as we can get it cut, it will be online!

For now that's it - but much more for later!




Fabric Quilt Kits & More to Come!

Hi, Everyone!  It's been a while since we got together last!  Very busy, of course, plotting things to come and keeping up with the seasonal must-dos that occur with going from spring to summer.  

One of the most fun things I got to do was see my oldest granddaughter, McKenzie, graduate!  No, not from colllege - hey, I'm not that old!  Yes, she's now a Freshman for the second, and most important, time, and will be attending the University of Central Arkansas as a music major - and boy, is she up for that!  She can play anything with a mouthpiece or keys!  I'll have to check out getting a T-shrt and cap!

Kenzie & her sister, Kia, are going to visit for a week or so toward the last of this month (that's coming up fast!), so I warned them that we'd all be working for Daisy & Dell through that time, but they're coming in spite of it!  :}  Whew!  Finally I can get some computer work done & some Ekits put together - & others, too!

What other Kits, you ask?  Well, I'm putting together FABRIC KITS for various quilts over the next couple months and will have them on the website (and here) for you to buy.  And many of you have wanted more kits of the Live, Love & Laugh quilt, so we'll have more of that one, too!

This is new for us, so hope you'll enjoy having them available to you!

We've turned in our paperwork to attend Quilt Market in the fall, so I'll let you know where we'll be when I get our booth assignment - sometime in September.

AND this year we're also going to have a booth at Festival!  More about that later.

So will be back with sneak peeks of our progress!

Always Yours,





April Free Bird Pattern is Here!

Have you been to the website?  What's keeping you?  The new Free pattern is there waiting for you!  These fun, funny, funky little birds will put a smile on your face!  Like their sister patterns, they're fast & easy, and use the same supplies as the previous ones.  OK, so close your eyes - don't peek! - and I'll show you . . . . . .

April free pattern - bird samples photo
Two little April Birds waiting for the rest of the flock!

They're made with batting sandwiched between fabric for both body and wing, eye is fused in place and the beak, topknot (rick rack or pompom trim) & hanger are sewn in with one outside line of stitching. It's superfast!  Buttons make them even cuter.   And their legs are just poked through the body.  They dangle and move!

Write a note on the back with a Micron permanent pen in a contrasting color!  If the fabric design lends itself to it, just write around the designs.  Then add a little Bird to a Birthday gift!

April free bird pattern photo - doorknob

Make them bright like we did or in a soft color for a baby gift!  Make a baby quilt or tote bag for a shower and make one of these from the same fabrics to add to the outside of the package as a keepsake.  There's an optional tail, too, in the pattern!

  April bird free pattern pic nest

This one looks right at home in this Easter Basket!  Can you see his dangly legs?  As in the Bunny pattern last month, you can trace the pattern from the opposite side and some of your Birds will be going the other direction.  You can download it from the website or download right here  April Bird Pattern, and no waiting!

We're working on a new qult design using Moda's PB&J fabric by Basic Grey!  We think you'll like it, so keep an eye out right here.  Meantime we'll post the next Free pattern in time for May, with more right here in between!




March Free Bunny Pattern is Here!

Such SWEET little Bunnies!  Look at those fluffy tails!  Perfect in Someone's Easter Basket!

March free Bunny - 3 samples
Tails & Ribbons & Bows! Oh, My!

The left one is wool with a tail of wool fiber, the others are regular cotton with cotton floss tails.  We used a Clover pompom maker of 1" and another one of 1 3/8" sizes.  These are really handy! But you can make a tail from just winding fiber around a couple of your fingers, or anything else that's the right size; just so you can slip it off and tie.  You can see that the floss tails have a finer look and the one on the left from the heavier wool fiber is coarser.  It's variegated and makes a beautiful combination of colors!  

Another way to get a speckled tail is to just use 2 different colors, using one about 1/3 of the other.  Wind it along with the main one, so you have the color throughout instead of all in one place when it's finished!  Try pink, gray or white with a little brown.

Single bunny detail
Machine stitching along the embroidery gives a quilted look.

If you don't want a pompom tail, use a 1" button OR make a yo-yo and fasten to Bunny with a small button in the center.  Use a combination of these on several Bunnies, so they're all different!

 Since you're going to make a whole basketful of these sweeties, you'll want to turn the pattern over and trace so some of them face the opposite way.  AND make some with wool on one side and cotton on the other.  OR you could even embroider both sides and make them double-sided (mirror the pattern for the opposite side, match up embroiderd lines on front & back, and pin to machine stitch next to them). Sooooo would you make 2 pompom tails (?) or use a button on one side with a pompom on the other and sew them both on at the same time??

Oh!  I guess you'll be needing the pattern!  You can go to the website and download, or do it right here (we won't make you wait) March Bunny Pattern.

Bunny on doorknob
Your fabric & ribbon choices can change it from a sophisticated to a cottage-y look!

Handmade for Family & Friends!

We'll be back soon with the April Pattern!  It's a little more whimsical, but just as cute!  Meantime, we'll be Show & Telling you about everything that's happening.  In fact, we're going to Tucson again next week for a short time off and will have some pictures of that amazing area!  Will of course be writing the blog from there (depending on how the wind blows :) - connections can be spotty!) so can also show you some of the handpainted canvases I'll be needlepointing while I'm there!

Yours Always,



Whoops! Try the January Free Pattern Again!

I guess you discovered it before we did. The January Free Snowman Pattern was uploaded incorrectly!  What you saw was just a draft, without the drawing or photos or any of the magic that Sue does to make it fun to look at!

BUT IT'S ALL FIXED NOW!  Go to the website to the 'Free For You' page, or go back to the last post. and click on the link for the pattern you were expecting!  It's waiting right there for you!

I'm hoping we can have March for you before the end of the week!

Always Yours!



January Free Pattern is Here!

Have you been to the website?  What are you waiting for? The January free pattern is there (the one that was delayed, of course)!  It is so cute, you'll think it worth the wait!  And you'll be ahead on your Christmas giving/packaging for next year!

 Here are the 3 samples we made . . . . . .

Jan green snowman small Jan blue snowman small Jan Free Red Snowman - small

Don't they look Happy-Go-Lucky?!  They are because they know that though they're Flaky, they're also Darling!  Don't you agree?

You can click right here January Snowman  and download the pattern, too!  

There are many ways to make these different, so you can make a bunch of them . . . . . is that right(?) . . a gaggle of geese, a flock of birds,  a herd of horses . . a bunch of snowmen , , , Hmmm.  How about a treeful of these cuties!?  You may notice that the first Snowman has embroidered arms, but it's a little difficult to see the twig arms on the other two.  They were fun to do; I just snapped twigs from my quince and one of the yaupons, let them dry inside a day, then cut to size.  Just glued them in place with white craft glue in between the back and batting, then waited overnight to dry.  If you'll add a little glue between the front and batting at that point, too, you won't have to stitch the top to batting at the end.  It's not possible to stitch all the way through after you've glued because, although it's flexible, it's too hard for a needle, and you don't need to anyway - it's NOT coming open!  A little dab'll do 'ya!

Change the buttons.  Make them different shapes and colors, as we have above.  It would be fun to have one that used different colors for the body buttons!  We'll do that, too, because we're going to make a bunch (there's that term again) to hang on our tree at Market, so our Singing Ornaments have a few extra friends!

All the Snowmen above are made from wool - so nice to work with and they feel good in your hand, but you should try some with regular cottons or a combination.  We'll be doing that, too, with more samples!  Try using some blush on a Q-tip or the end of your little finger to make the cheeks, if you don't want to embroider them, just embroider an outline of the circle instead of filling it in, etc.  And if you don't have the carrot nose, just trace the nose and embroider it, instead.

Earmuff buttons are stitched to the allowance, so you can see his face.  The 'wire' is either actual 22 gauge craft wire, which comes in a rainbow of colors, or DMC's memory 'thread' which is a thread-covered wire, also in many colors!  They both work great, so you could get some of both and just choose the color that works best from either one!  We used both!

In spite of the CUTE details, they're fast and fun to make!  And as you can see, so cute hanging on the tree.  How cute would they be on someone's package, or on the dinner table as a napkin ring?

We're about to bring you the March pattern, so better get started on these right now!  Have fun!

Always yours,



Cold But Cozy

It is Cold, Cold, CoId!  See what I mean?

Winter Robin
He's all fluffed up, like me - only I'm inside, not out!

Woke up early this morning and couldn't stop my 'thinker' from going, so just got up.  Turned on my kettle and fixed some tea (coffee just didn't seem right) . . . . .

Mug of tea w/peppermint stick
There's Taylor's tea in there!

. . . . . and I worked on one of my samples for the January Free Pattern.  It's SO CUTE!  I think you'll like it!  And it's siimple enough that you can make a pickup load!  Simple is the cornerstone of our once a month Free Patterns this year, so don't miss any; at the end of the year they'll be up a little longer (I'll warn you), then gone, so download them as we go!  

Cold as it is, I don't want winter to go yet!  I'm not quite ready to let go of my flannel quilt in the recliner, or a cup of Taylor's tea on a cold morning (like now!), or the smell of potato soup or stew on the stove in the afternoon when it's pouring rain (I'd rather have snow, but it's Houston and there's only one chance of that in 25 years!). I am seldom bothered by day after day with clouds or terrible weather.  To me it's just an excuse to do something I love; embroidering, sketching, graphing a new design, reading, watching a movie on my iPad (with my Beats headphones - OH! Just wonderful!).  And I feel all "tucked in" at home.

When we lived in northern England, I was about the only one who didn't have too much trouble with the short winter days.  The sun was "up" about 9:00 a.m. and set a little after 3:00 p.m.  The sun really never got too far above the horizon, so the light wasn't bright, either.  Together with their normal tendency to rainy & cloudy days all year, it could be a challenge!  I needlepointed during long evenings in front of our coal fire and finished three of Kaffe Fassett's beautiful pillows while there!  By the time we were transferred home, though, even I was ready to see some Texas sunshine!  REALLY, REALLY miss England, though!  Part of me is still there.

England house w/wisteria
Is this BEAUTIFUL or what?!?


And how about this?  Every place I set my eyes, there was WONDERFUL!

English village - buff stone
Wouldn't you like to go?


Did you know that Susan Branch is soon to finish a new book about England, full of information & photos, handwritten, and littered with her delightful watercolors and illustration?  You can keep up with her progress right here and enjoy her blog as well;  it's only because I love you that I tell you this . . . SIGH . . . don't forget to come back . . . . . (:>

We're soon to have up the delinquent January Free Pattern, and we're already way ahead on the one for March - they won't be far apart!  And soon!  Plus I'm plannng 3 new quilts, some clever little placemats, an addition to our Tabletop Quilts, a baby quilt, and more!

Be back!  Always Yours!



Happy Valentine's Day! Enjoy YOUrself!

Happy Valentine's Day!!!  

Hope you're going to do something special today!  If you have a sweetheart, you probably already have something planned, but you don't need a sweetheart to have a great Valentine's!  Enjoy YOUrself!  Plan to do something you really enjoy & don't often make time to do.  One of my favorite things is to curl up in a chair with some popcorn ....m.m.m.m.....and watch a favorite movie - either on the TV or on my iPad.  It's usually one I've seen a million times but love every time I see it!  Watch 2 in a row! Sometimes I like to watch the original movie and then the remake right after it.  Or watch the same one twice - just veg out for once!  Or after work, give yourself some time to work on the quilt you had to put aside a while back - or start that new block of the month you want to have!  Treat yourself!  If you're in the middle of snow & ice right now, staying in may be the only option.  

Here in Houston we've had a cold snap but still have daytime temps in the 60's.  I was surprised to see what's been going on outside while I wasn't looking!  I noticed it while I sat on the patio (south facing) for about an hour (then it got too cold), so I took some pictures for you who are snowbound to let you see what's coming your way! 

Redbud Blooms
The Earliest Redbud Blooms


Yellow Pansies
These yellow Pansies really light things up!


Winter flower pots
A group of winter flower pots to brighten the deck


Azalea blossoms
First Azalea blossoms


Pansy Border
In-ground plantings finally get some sun!


Quince blooms
Quince blossoms are in full swing! The whole bush in covered!


Cyclamen in blue pot
Cyclamen loves our warmer winter, but these got bitten a little by the frost this A.M.


Closeup of Cypress leaves
Cypress leaves can hardly wait to emerge!


Cypress tree leaves closeup
They just caught the sun, which was out most of the day.

 Everything seems in such a hurry to wake up!  So it's made our Valentine's Day a little more special.  Hope these photos have added a little "bright" to your day!  

Sit down and make a few of our little hearts from the February Free Pattern.  It won't take long and all you have to do is go to the website and download the pattern.  Then add one to each place setting at lunch or dinner!

As Always, Yours with Hearts & Hugs!



Free Heart Pattern Photos

 Hi, All!  I promised this photo yesterday, so here is the Heart Garland in a more standard style.  I really like it!  (And it's out of Jake's reach; he's a very curious poochie.)  Since the fabric strips are tied together, it's easy to shorten by just removing a few.  It would be pretty hung in lots of places!  I was thinking I'd move it (carefully) to my library and just set books on the ends to hold in place.  Or maybe in front of the dining room windows!

Heart Garland


Hearts Garland
I like this one the best! How about you?

This one is probably in Jake's reach though; but I think I'll leave it and hope he doesn't notice!  Dangerous . . . I could lose the candle holders, too . . . Hmmmm . . . . .


Here are the packaged Kits so you can see the contents.

Hearts packaged 1


I noticed that quite a few of you have already downloaded the Free Heart Pattern!  Have fun!  And remember, a Heart is great for decor, on packaging, or as a gift anytime!  Hint:  It slips into a gift card envelope very easily - just a little extra postage and you've sent a card with the gift, too, in just an envelope!

Hope your day so far has been great!  And filled with quilting, handwork or whatever puts a smile on your face!

 Always Yours,



February Free Pattern & Kits

So did you go to the website to download the pattern?  And the Kits page to order some of the kits?  Don't delay, the stock is limited!

I made the samples you see myself!  It had been so long since I'd done anything at my machine, I just had an overwhelming sense of satisfaction at the idea of making something myself. You know, hands-on!  Sure, I'm always doing things related to making something . . . drawing or designing or computer work or writing for a pattern, blog, website (or making a list of things to do or write).  But not actually doing it; Wilma usually puts everything together (and so beautifully!).  So it was really fun . . . Hmmmm . . . I think I'll have to do that again.  I really would like to finish some of those UFO's I've got put away!

But back to the present!  It was no wonder it was fun because these little Hearts are really Easy to do, meaning Fast & Fun!  I made 2 Kits worth, so you can see from the photos that makes a nice group for just about anything you'd want to do.  If you want to give some away, you might want another Kit (each one makes 9 Hearts).

So while you're making out your Valentine list, I'll show you just a few ideas to get your inspiration going.  Here's the whole gang!  See the 9?  They're made from the very same fabrics that are in the Kit; there are 81 combinations possible . . . well, practically there are 72, because you wouldn't use the same color for the small heart as for the large.  But I digress.:) 

Free February 2013 Hearts from Kit
I love the Gray in the color group!

The Kit contains the Flirt fabric by Sandy Gervais from Moda.  Isn't it pretty? 

Hearts on french doors
You could even hang one on the front door outside on Valentine's Day!

These are only hung for the photo and the idea.  If I actually left them there, Jake would think they looked good enough to eat!  They'll fit over a round knob, too.

Feb. Heart Garland
A 'wandering' garland is still eye-catching!

The garland has 2 Kits worth of hearts, except for 2 (I know you're counting & finding only 16).  One I saved to use in the next idea, and the other one got lost in the ET photo (I'll show you in a minute) & didn't make it into this one; otherwise, there should be 18!  

I like the random look, but later I'll show you how it looks in the standard style, which I think I'll like best.  The hearts are hung on 2 1/2" strips cut from the same heart fabrics.  Then they're just tied together and strung across the candle holders.  The hearts are attached with miniature clothespins.  With fewer strips, it would have a less random look.  So you would just adjust the strips for the place you want to use it!

Single Heart closeup





Here's a close closeup!  I used a .01 sepia colored Micron pen to trace with but you can't see the line when you stitch over it.

These edges were cut with pinking shears, but you could use a different design on any decorative edge scissors.











Valentine tree display



Here is another photo of a Valentine tree covered with the same hearts!  This is the one I referred to as the ET photo.  There's lots going on here, but I thought you'd have fun taking a look!

The tree is temporarily anchored in a vintage McCoy pottery flower pot.  Can you see the stepped down 'skirt' design?  Beautiful!  And that color!!!

The Flirt fabric has a light coral-ly shade to the reds and pinks in that collection, but it mixes beautifully with the truer pinks and reds around it.







One last idea and I'll call it quits!  (But it's been fun looking at the photos, hasn't it?  Just like this little book with all it's pictures!)  


Heart bookmark - cover of book
'Never Too Little to Love' book with our Heart Bookmark!


I just loved this idea!  You can do this easily with some of the hearts in the Kit.  You should make the ribbon 13" to 15" long.  If you have a specific book in mind, measure the length of the spine and add 2" at each end (4" total).  You'll need the 2" so the heart can hang over the edge of the cover and not get caught in the pages or under the book!  Instead of attaching the small heart to the large one with the button, just add the button to the large one at one end of the ribbon and stitch the ribbon to the small one at the other end.  Now you can give the Heart Bookmark with a book.  What a special gift!

This children's book by Jeanne Willis & Jan Fearnley is simply adorable!  Take a look inside:

Inside book w/Heart bookmark

See the hearts on the right page - and our Bookmark is perfect.  The end of the story is very sweet!

End of book with Heart bookmark

For ages 1 & up (all the way to me!).  The pages are heavier because of the format of the book.


Heart Bookmark w/iPad


So here's the end of our Heart blog!  There are other ideas for them that come to mind, but I'll leave that to your imagination!

So try some . . . have fun . . . . give some & put a smile on someone's face!

That's what it's all about!

Back Tomorrow!


Visit Our Store

Glad you've stopped by to see what's happening at Daisy & Dell! Make yourself at home! As often as we can, we'll show and tell you about the studio, fabric lines, blocks of the month, kits, free projects, plans for future designs, projects in progress, booth photos, everyday happenings… just anything we think will strike your fancy! We love hearing from you, so feel free to comment, ask a question, send us your photos, or tell me, Pat Bruce, what's going on with YOU! .

— Pat