New York State of Mind, Part II (+ Deep Thoughts)

I know city livin’ ain’t for everyone. But it’s definitely for me.

The city offers endless, daily inspiration for all kinds of artistic endeavors folks like me choose to take on. For a quilter, modern, traditional, or otherwise, a city like Chicago or NYC offers quilt inspiration like “cray cray,” as the kids say. Which brings us to a couple other pictures from last weekend.


That hot little number was just hanging in the window of an antique shop somewhere Midtown-ish. I walked past and stopped in my tracks. That is an old quilt. And yet so perfectly suited to a modern home. It dazzles me every single time, I swear. The old quilts are the ones that make me want to make new quilts. Black, red, green, and gold and white ALWAYS ROCK IN A QUILT. That is the lesson today, grasshopper.

Then there were these shoes beloved Trash & Vaudeville on St. Mark’s. Do I like them? No. Would I wear them? Never. But they are patchworky and therefore relevant. I’m picturing a drag queen with a neo-frontier woman getup…


And that brings me to my second thought of the day. Working on the Quilty magazine (it’s almost May!!!) has challenged me to think simultaneously about what works for quilt magazine readers (namely patterns, more patterns, and tips on how to get better at what we love to do) and also about what I believe people/women want out of any magazine (namely neat stuff to look at, well-written content, deals/scoops, etc.) As a magazine lover, I feel I can speak with some authority when I say I observe these things and they are true.

So when I post pictures here of patchwork shoes or the face of a skyscraper that makes me want to make a quilt, or when I show pictures of Madonna in a dress that Joan Rivers said looked like some disco-quilt hybrid, it’s because I believe quilters are not only thinking of quilting. We’re thinking of pop culture, of the world around us, of our environment. All the things everyone else thinks about, right? Right.

While the content of this blog and the magazine will always be relevant to the art of quiltmaking and the people who do the quiltmaking, I am excited by the avenues less explored by folks in the past.

The world is our pincushion.

And with that, a picture of me and my dear friend Sarah K. Greer having dinner. This is the least-relevant picture I may have ever posted, but it counts for two reasons: 1. Sarah has an original Fons quilt in her possession and 2. We decided NOT to smile in this photograph because I said, “Let’s NOT smile in this photograph and do it they way they did it in the old days.” And everyone knows quilts, like the one in the window in NYC, started back in the old days.


See? Relevance.

Other topics you may enjoy:


Hey Quilty Blog
Mary Fons

About Mary Fons

Mary Fons hails from a prominent quilt mafia family. A professional writer and performer, Mary co-hosted the nationally-airing PBS program "Fons & Porter's Love of Quilting" along with her mom, famed quilter and educator Marianne Fons. In 2010, Mary began hosting Quilty, an online show offered weekly on In 2012, Mary became editor of Quilty magazine. She holds a Theater Arts BA from the University of Iowa.

10 thoughts on “New York State of Mind, Part II (+ Deep Thoughts)

  1. Love the not smiling picture- it is funny because those old photos are true- no one ever smiled. What was up with that?
    Love that quilts are everywhere and quilting inspiration too. Never realized that until I became a quilter. Now I see it all over the place.
    Cannot wait for Quilty in May!!

  2. mary—picture is funny—but don’t start a revolution—–I like your smile and charm—–lines–lips—-cheekbones—who cares—let’s just be happy–smile–and quilt!!!!