Let the twinkling begin
The eager beavers are already at it – random patches of twinkling Christmas lights are popping up everywhere. And even though it feels way too early (there are still jack-o-lanterns on some doorsteps), you do have to admit that it does evoke pleasant visions of brightly colored packages under the tree, and perhaps some not so pleasant visions of frantic mall and Ebay shopping.
Regardless, like it or not, and ready or not, the season is coming, and while we certainly don't condone lighting up your Thanksgiving turkey, maybe it doesn't hurt to go ahead and string just a little holly here or there.
As part of your holiday decorations, there are several quick (at this time of year, quick is the optimal word) and easy projects in our recent issues such as the Holiday Cheer table topper in our Nov/Dec issue, or the fun wallhangings like the I Believe in Santa or the Jacki Frost in the Winter Easy Quilts issue. The key to a stress-free holiday season is to always plan ahead … why is that never as simple as it sounds?
From our readers
Good deed done…
submitted by Linda Harris, Houston, TX
Executive Assistant for Seneca Resources
I wanted to share our version of the Venetian Dream quilt shown in your Fall Easy Quilts magazine.
Earlier this year, our company asked employees for fund raising suggestions that would be different from causes we have supported in the past. I had been aware of MD Anderson’s quilt auction to raise funds for ovarian cancer research from visiting their booth at the Houston quilt show. As it happens, one of our employees has been battling ovarian cancer for the past 18 months. She has been so amazing during her fight and such an inspiration to us all – always a smile on her face, her sunny disposition always positive and rarely an indication that things were anything but business as usual.(She is holding up the right corner of the quilt in the pictures.)
We feel blessed that the “quilt project” was selected as one of the fundraisers for this year. Almost all of the ladies in our company have had some hand in the project – selecting fabric patterns, washing the fabric, cutting (some using a rotary cutter for the first time!), and sewing. Some of the ladies who had never sewn were instrumental in thread clipping and pressing!
The fabrics we chose for our quilt were from the Blank Inspiration collections. I learned from a local quilt store that $1 from each yard sold was donated to ovarian cancer research. We took over a conference room and worked on the quilt during our lunch hour on Tuesdays and Thursdays with three sewing machines going, two irons pressing and the hour flying by. The quilt top was completed last week and is at the quilter now. We can hardly wait to have it back.
The plan now is to auction the quilt at our holiday potluck lunch in December. Some lucky person will have a beautiful quilt and all the money raised from the auction, and hopefully additional donations, will go to ovarian cancer research. We’ve all learned so much about this disease and how easily the diagnosis is missed. Our friend was stage 4 when she was diagnosed. It’s our hope that the information we share and our contribution will help others know the signs of this disease.
Thank you for providing a beautiful quilt pattern for us to make. I can’t tell you how much pride the women who worked on it have in a job well done. Of all the women involved, only a few of us had past quilting experience. And now, we have a group wanting to do Christmas projects. We may have to start our own bee!!
A Partridge for my kitchen…
submitted by Sharron Walker
I enjoy your magazine very much. I just finished making the Partridge in a pear tree wall hanging (Nov/Dec 2009 issue of Love of Quilting), but I am going to use it as a tablecloth for my dining room table over the Christmas holidays with a clear plastic covering over it to keep it clean.
A true badge of Honor…
submitted by Kim's aunt Cheryl Lee
A Way to Show Support and Honor!
Kim Bassett had an idea to show support for the family of Deputy Chris Dewey who was shot in the line of duty in February 2009. She sent a letter to the law enforcement centers in Minnesota to obtain department patches for a quilt for Deputy Dewey and ask for their support of Deputy Dewey’s law enforcement family. Kim and her mother, Holly Haugen, pieced together the sheriff’s star center, appliquéd it to the background and sewed on the first border before having it quilted by a friend, Helen Halvorson. After receiving 110 patches from sheriff’s departments, city police departments, law enforcement schools, and special units, they appliquéd each one to a square and arranged them around the center with a flip and sew method. The borders were then machine quilted and the binding attached.
Kim and Holly flew to the rehab hospital in Denver to present the quilt, donations and many personal notes to Deputy Dewey in September. His eyes lit up (he’s not verbalizing much yet) when seeing the various patches and his wife cried when she saw the quilt. The quilt is a great keepsake and show of support and honor to a family hurting and in need.
A new and innovative twist to an old business concept was behind the new quilt store in Sisters, Oregon, operated by Barbara Herlocker. Emerald Quilts LLC opened in May 2009 to offer quilts on consignment to the town’s many visitors. This Central Oregon town, known for the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show, hangs some 1300 quilts in a day, offering about 25% of them for sale. Previously, visitors had been unable to find any other source for buying local quilts. Local quilters enthusiastically responded and began clearing out their sewing rooms with an eagerness to make new ones. The store charged a 33 1/3% commission and helped consignors set prices. Sales were a boon to local pocketbooks in hard economic times. Because the quilts were offered at affordable prices, visitors could take something home, which reflected the talented local quilt makers.
Click for a larger image.
Emerald Quilts carried wall hangings, runners, lap, bed and decorative quilts of all colors and variety. A special exhibit of June Jaeger’s Western Quilts, noted Prineville quilt maker and teacher, filled one wall. Other special collections such as crazy quilts, vintage, flannel, children’s, and Hmong quilts captured attention. With large tables and baskets of gloves, the atmosphere was one of touching, opening, and enjoying the quilts. During the quilt week preceding the Outdoor Quilt Show visitors excitedly took photos, talked technique, and examined the shop’s products. People wandered the store just because they loved quilts and most had never seen them available in such abundance. Over 500 pieces were sold from June through August. The store will open again from May through September in 2010. Both Jean Wells, owner of the Stitchin’ Post Quilt Store, and Ann Richardson, Director of the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show, were very supportive of such a compatible business venture.
Click for a larger image.
“Quilting is our passion”, reflects owner Barbara Herlocker. “Some we keep, some we give away, and some we sell to keep our passion going. Selling quilts is like selling art. It would be wonderful to have more stores like this pop-up in other communities.” Landlords are becoming flexible regarding their empty commercial spaces. It’s part of the creativity necessary to generate income and stimulate our local economy.
Barbara Herlocker may be contacted year-round at: firstname.lastname@example.org,
FAX: 541-923-7118, or P.O. Box 3500 PMB#114, Sisters, OR 97759
She resides with her husband, Don at Emerald Ranch, Sisters, OR.
P.S. The 2010 35th annual Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show which is held the second Saturday of July, will feature the work of Jean Wells, originator of the show.
This is a simple quilt pattern I started with on the wood square above the
garage door. Then it got extended to the door itself. Maybe I'll continue it
when the weather warms up again.
Click for a larger image.
- Joan Schmeling
Fons & Porter's Love of Quilting
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