Tuesday, July 18, 2017


One year post Stem Cell transplant for Multiple Myeloma,
I was feeling grateful to be able
to enjoy the wonderful experience of attending the Sister's Quilt show this year.
For me, it proved to be gratifying in many ways.

The quilts of course were so much fun! 
My husband estimates that out of the 1,500 that were displayed, we probably saw about 85 percent. That's pretty good! considering how hot a mid-July Saturday in Sisters, Oregon can get.

Among the treasures that I brought home with me, was a fat quarter I found while perusing one of the town's antique shops. It was $1.25 and had been previously cut into by someone wanting to use only one of the many butterflies.


I took it home and proceeded to cut and fuse a few of the butterflies onto scraps of fabric that I pulled out of my scrap bins and stitched together. Some of this fabric was an old dish towel that I had previously watercolor painted and used in another quilt.
The top quilting was random and included a handful of different thread colors.
To finish my little quilt, I faced and mounted it onto a stretched 8" x 8" canvas.

This morning, while looking up butterfly symbolism, I found the following:


The Metaphor of the Butterfly
The cycle of the butterfly in and of itself holds spiritual teaching and insight for us.
Birthed from an egg the butterfly lives its early life as a caterpillar.
It then retreats within the pupa or chrysalis where it undergoes a transformation, and finally when it leaves the chrysalis it is reborn as a beautiful winged butterfly.
The magnificent life of the butterfly closely mirrors the process of spiritual transformation as we each have the possibility to be reborn through going within.
By retreating from the world into our inner being, surrounding ourselves in cocoons of prayer, meditation, spiritual books and courses, we're ready at some point to emerge. Awakened and ready to fly, we're transformed and reborn into an entirely new way of being.
In addition to how they live their miraculous life, butterflies don't live long. They typically only live for a few weeks or months at the longest, which in and of itself offers more guidance for us. Guidance that life is short. Even for humanity time moves quickly, and so the butterfly with its magnificent and yet short life, reminds us to enjoy the here and now.
I also like to think that the transformation of the butterfly, as well as each of our own spiritual transformations continue onward after death. With death we retreat from the physical world, but once again we are reborn into another dimension where we get our wings, and remember our full light and how to fly.
http://www.ask-angels.com/spiritual-guidance/butterfly-meaning/

Saturday, July 15, 2017

The glory of a summer morning


This morning I went out onto the patio to enjoy my coffee as the sun came up.

I realized that this was it - 
the perfect summer moment that we all wait so patiently for all year long.

How glorious it felt. The air was warm and smelled sweet. Summer birds were beginning their chatter. A small group of them rustling about in the ivy leaves. 

. . . And all was well, for that special moment, here in my corner of the world.
I felt so blessed.


Friday, June 23, 2017

Choices - Direction - Moving On . . .

30 x 30"



When I first began this quilt, I was thinking about choices:
All the choices that each of us are called to make, each and every day of our lives.

My kids are constantly making choices –
Where to live, who to date, should I buy a car? Etc.

I feel like I am personally in a constant state of making choices –
How do I want to spend the time that I have left?
What other interests should I explore?
What would I enjoy?
Should I down-size a lifetime of accumulation to prepare for the next place that I am going to live?
Where would that be?
How do I simplify my life so that I am able to manage easier day to day?
How do I make new friends?
. . .
The triangles in this piece, represent all of these choices.  Each pointing in a different direction - toward a different outcome - maybe. By using complementary colors with related surface design, I am trying to imply some abstract connection between them all.

In my quilting, I wanted to show ‘flow’, as in a current of water (life) where everything keeps moving and changing. I used clear monofilament thread to give texture and direction to the stitching, without overwhelming the viewer with color in the thread.
. . .
After a rough year of personal challenges while trying to finish this, I finally completed my quilt this week.
Hanging sleeve, label and all.

Now, it’s time to move on. . .

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Cancer Changes Everything

First day of Chemo: August 31, 2015

I used to worry about the big earthquake that is due in our region at anytime.
Now, the days go by with a different focus.
I don't think about that anymore. . .


Thursday, March 12, 2015

More About Me . . .




A Midwest native, I grew up in St. Louis Park, a small suburb of Minneapolis, Minnesota. My mother was an accomplished seamstress, sewing clothes for my younger brother and me for as long as we would tolerate. One of my most favorite memories is that of a small cigar box where she kept her embroidery threads. I could sit for hours gently fingering all the colorful strands of thread.

For as long as I can remember, I have loved art and anything to do with fiber. I began as a weaver in college. After graduating with a degree in Commercial Art and Advertising, I married my High School Sweetheart and worked for many years as a Graphic Designer in Seattle, Washington.

My quilting journey began, when I took a hand-quilting class offered by the Seattle Art Museum, in October of 1985. Nancyann Twelker patiently guided the class through the basics of hand piecing. At that time, our templates were pieces of recycled x-ray film, cut to size and placed on a piece of fabric. We then traced around the edges with a pencil, and cut along these pencil lines with a pair of scissors. Rotary cutters and mat boards had not come into existence yet. Times certainly have changed, and so have my methods of quilting! During the earlier school years, while raising two wonderful boys here in the Pacific Northwest, I was able to enjoy five years of teaching an Art Literacy Program as a volunteer within our local school district. 

I work intuitively, constructing quilts and letting the design choose its own direction. This can lead to many new discoveries – things that would not reveal themselves thru ‘following lessons’ or by taking a class. I am fascinated with line, pattern, color and texture and how to create with these elements. I enjoy the constant ongoing process and exploration. 

Then, as an Instructor and Sales Associate for Viking Sewing Machines, I cycled back and forth between quilting, general sewing and garment construction. I’ve also had the pleasure of working and teaching for several years at a local Quilt Shop, and another three years as a Bernina Educator. These opportunities not only offered exposure to a number of different sewing, piecing and quilting techniques but thru teaching, an opportunity to share ideas with many people. I have been designing my patterns since 2000.

Currently, I am exploring quilt design more abstractly. I have started experimenting with some new techniques, working mostly with scraps of fabric, cutting them free hand – using a pair of scissors, and randomly piecing or appliqueing. This can be very liberating as well as introspective. 




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Saturday, December 13, 2014

True magic

"I will honor Christmas in my heart and try to keep it all the year."

-Abraham Lincoln

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Winter winds are coming

 The news from across the country is showing us the start of our Winter weather.
Here in Oregon, we are to expect winds and freezing rain tomorrow.
Time to prepare, hunker down and snuggle in with a project.
 
I will be busy stitching up this sampler design from Blackbird Designs,
 appropriately titled
'Evergreen'.
 
 Do stay warm . . .

Monday, October 13, 2014

I just had to . . .

If any of you follow Kathie at  http://inspiredbyantiquequilts.blogspot.com/
you know that recently she has been exploring some color options for her little quilts using a Windmill block.

My momentum had been building each time I opened her blog and saw another wonderful set of blocks she had made. I was so inspired last week, that while I patiently waited for the inspector to come and take a look at our new furnace, I put together a few scrappy blocks of my own. 
I have never pieced this block before, and have to say that they are definitely addicting. 

Thank you Kathie for all of the inspiration!


Tuesday, October 7, 2014

October


The month of October is upon us.
Last weekend we had our Garage Sale on Saturday. 
The temperature rose higher than expected, so we ended up closing an hour earlier than planned. Our driveway is on the west side of the house, which can heat up pretty fast when the sun makes it way around to that side in the afternoon.
My neighbor brought over a few things to add to the stash. 
My youngest Son stopped over to help and join in the fun.
We enjoyed the people, and all the stories that everyone is always so eager to share. We were very satisfied with all the items that were re-purposed. While what was left behind we quickly whisked off to our local Goodwill and Habitat for Humanity Rebuild centers.
All in all, I would call the day a success!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The air is getting cooler!

I have started the Fall cleaning of my sewing room and 
dug out a few kits and patterns to share with you
this month:

'Jack'
  26" x  29"

'Maggie'
  28 1/4" x  45"
 
If you are interested in purchasing a copy of these applique patterns, 
 I am kindly offering them at $6.00 each -  free postage!
 
Kits available for 'Jack' quilt top only (includes pattern),
$15.00


please email me:
Ginghamleaf@gmail.com

Monday, March 24, 2014

Baby Lovies



 Toward the end of last year, three of my nieces were pregnant, all at the same time!
Two have delivered, and the third is on the way.

 Last week, I finished up the binding on the first one.
(Very girly, girl)
 And quickly finished quilting the second.
(For someone's lively little monkey)

 I had so much fun putting these together!

Hmmmmmm?. . .Now, what will I do for the third?



Friday, February 21, 2014

Getting Down to the Nitty Gritty . . .

We are in the middle of a remodel.
It's time to replace our old kitchen.
It has been used and abused for a number of years, before we became the new caretakers.

We have ripped out everything and are starting over from scratch.
No blog posts for awhile.
Ah, yes - I am looking forward to the change!

Friday, February 7, 2014

Just beautiful . . .

. . . this morning as I opened our front door.
Looks like an old black and white photo.