John’s Finnigan

A year ago, John’s dog, Finnigan died. He asked me to do a quilt of Finnigan in December. He sent me photos in May. After many months, I finally finished my version of Finnigan. From photo to quilt.

Original photo from John
Adding more colours and texture
Finally finished!

Goodbye to 2020 – a Year of I’sew’lation

It was quite a year. Got a chance to catch up on lots of projects. I had a few challenges I wanted to complete, and UFO’s. I finished 36 quilts, including 25 UFO’s!!! That feels good. Now if I could just do it for 10 more years! Here there are!

An alternative 9 patch
I was in a Challenge to make 10 – 9 patch squares per month for 9 months. Then 9 of us exchanged blocks. Not everyone did them all, so in the end, I had 72 blocks to play with. I like the Storm-at-Sea curvy feel so I made many more 9 patches and put it together. It looked great the colours worked; other’s liked it, but I just found it a little boring. I cut out a Sploop, turned it, and put it back in. I added an undulating outline and put it back in. I really like it now

When Mary Pal came to Calgary, I was so excited to learn her method. Last year, I finally finished all the projects I started in her class:

The first two are my husband, Dale , and his father, Jim.

The other ones are Mary’s Designs; they are exercises we did in class.

We also tried making a leaf – her first exercise. I did some more leaves to enter a SAQA Show.

I call it “Colours of Canada”.

Colours of Canada

My group SPECTRA mounted a show called “COMMUNICATION”. This is what I entered; I names them “Sharing”, “Listening”, “Peace’ and “Love.”

I always enter my quilts at The “Festival of Quilts” at Heritage Park in Calgary. It’s a good way for me to keep track of what quilts I did over the year. I also like to enter their challenge if I can. This year it was pineapple quilts, so it was a good excuse to finish some UFO’s. Here’s a couple:

The first is a combination of some of my Dad’s ties and some silk I had. The blocks are pretty small, but I loved doing it. The next one started as a friendship block with my guild “The Silver Thimbles in Northwest Calgary. Some people struggled, but they turned out well.

We had a couple of family weddings this year. They were both in Ontario so we ended up watching them virtually. My nephew Braden married Leah and they picked pink, grey and navy blue for their colours. They also liked the Storm-at-Sea/Snail’s Trail. My niece, Emily married Leighton, but they couldn’t decide so I did one of those Giant Dream Big by Hoffman (103″ X 103″). The Quilting was challenging, but, again, it was a good challenge for me.

We had a new grandson born during the pandemic, plus a couple of other babies:

I finished two quilts for the Fibre Arts Network (FAN). The theme was Threads of Hope. The challenge was to use a red fabric which hit both sides at 3″. Here is the “Never Ending Thread” and “Threads of Communication”:

Quilt Canada always has the Trend Tex challenge; this year the theme was “20/20 Vision” and there was a green challenge called “Gateway to Adventure”.

Signs of Christmas

This was a Advent Calendar started in 1996. It’s a Meadow Lily Bridge Pattern. I only found 7 blocks. I probably lost the rest in the flood in 2013. Anyway, I decided to put it together. And here it is.

This is our friend Dave who passed away in 2020. His kids commissioned me to do a portrait for Dave’s wife and then she asked my husband to frame it. This is the photo to quilt to finished piece.

After the Calgary flood in 2013, the City started repairing roads, parks, buildings, etc. For three years I drove the intersection on the TransCanada and Sarcee Trail. I had some Pakistani silk so I decided to make a quilt I named “Chaos”. In 2020, I fixed it up and submitted it to the “Crossroads” show at Grand National.

Inside My Diamond

This is the Elizabeth Pattern from MJ Kinman. I had a really fun time choosing my colours. Not quite she had in mind but MJ doesn’t mind. A fun way to paper piece from the front.

The pandemic caused us to really appreciate the nurses and doctors and frontline workers. There was a call to entry for a show for the Peter Lougheed Centre “PLC: From the Front Line to the Drawing Line“. My niece, Hailey, and my friend, Stephanie, both worked there so I made three quilts to enter.

This is the one they liked and eventually ended up in the show. It’s Hailey all masked and gowned up.

Bumbleberry Lane from Traditional Pastimes, Calgary Manhole cover, Four layer fish – from a demo I did, Tin Lizzie on deconstructed cotton, Mewtwo for Harrison’s birthday, Placemats for my brother and sister-in-law.

It was a great year for trying new things, finishing old things, trying new techniques and entering challenges and shows. I’m looking forward to another year of catching up. Let me know what you’ve been doing through this year of Isewlation.

Mary Pal

For years I have admired the quilts made by Mary Pal. I have tried to get into her classes at CQA in Ontario and even her classes in Haliburton. She is always booked up. Plus, it was quite expensive to fly to Ontario just to take her class. So, I decided to email her and invite ger to come to Calgary. And, what do you know? She did.

Mary came for the last week in May 2019. She came for a five day workshop and she gave an amazing Trunk Show. We were so pleased to have her here.

I started several quilts in her class. I finally finished them a year late.

I also started two large portraits, one of my husband, Dale, and his father, Jim. They also took me a year to finish.

Then I did a couple of other quilts in Mary’s style:

Anyway, it was well worth the time and money. I have a new friend and a new technique under my belt. I have totally been influenced by this wonderful woman.

You could be quoting Shakespeare

My group, SPECTRA, gave us a challenge; we were to find a Shakespeare Quote and make it into an Art Quilt.  This is what I came up with.

 These are called “A Rose is a Rose” and “Out, Damned Spot!”  I had so much fun doing them.  Both have these have been sold to my friend, Flo.  They’ve been travelling around Alberta on a two year show.

We decided to add a couple of smaller works.  They are 12″ X 12″.  These are called “Love is Blind” and “Break the Ice.”

We had a new show scheduled for April at the Art Pointe Gallery and two more shows later in the year, but doe to the pandemic, we’ll have to wait and see.

My Puppy Quilts

When I was doing surface design at ACAD, I did a lot of silkscreening.  This is one of the puppies I did for an assignment.  They were all from a photo of my friend’s dog, Buster.  Buster is no longer around, but I decided to put his images into a “Andy Warhol” inspired quilt. This is the finished product.

Our Buddy Buster

I had one left over; this one looks amazingly like another puppy in our family.  My brother and sister-in-law have a purse dog, named Maggie May.

Maggie May



MJ Kinman

MJ arrived on a cold blustery day in February, pretty different from Kentucky.  She was hoping to see two things: the mountains and a chinook.  Neither was possible.  We had a rushed three days.  I quickly showed her downtown, COP, etc. (it was -29 degrees but I wanted her to see something!).  We went out for dinner with the committee and we were off and running.  MJ is not only a stunning quilter but she is a bourbon aficiando!  Over the next two days, we learned about another style of paperless paper piecing and how bourbon is made.  Very interesting.  We talked and laughed a lot.  I feel like I’ve made a good friend.  I can’t wait for her to come back (when it’s nicer), and, now, I have a place to stay in Kentucky.


Some photos from when she was here:

Yay! 2019! A year to catch up

I feel like I’ve been paddling upriver; I’ll just never catch up.  I got a new computer and am trying to retrieve all my photos.  I need to feel organized.  I need to organize my past in order to make my future easier.  Ever feel that way?  So, I know I’ve completed 250 to 300 quilts plus many charity quilts.  And then I realized,  I only have about 50 quilts here; what has happened to them all.  I know I haven’t got photos of them all, but I’m going to try to take photos of the ones I can.

Meanwhile, we brought MJ Kinman in from Kentucky (on the coldest day of the year).  We had a great three days.  Good to start the year with some inspiration.  I continue to teach classes in the community and at my studio and it’s been great meeting new quilters and new to me quilters.  I actually met some old acquaintances at a trunk show I did for the Nimble Thimbles group in Airdrie last week.  Quilting gives me great opportunities!