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Greeting 2013


I love pillowcases.  I don’t think I ever met a fabric that I didn’t think would make a good pillowcase!  LOL

Here are two sets of pillowcases I made just before Christmas.  We put together and you can still buy kits for these.  It is pretty efficient to make a 12 x 16 inch Tidy Travel pillow case if you are going to make a full size one.  You just need a bit more fabric!

The Mahalo girls arrived just a week before Christmas!  And I needed something for my 20 year old nephew! :)

Getting Christmas gifts made & mailed is always a challenge for me.  I got things done and in the mail the last possible day, Dec. 19th, and the adrenaline rush was great!  Then the deflated feeling, “what do I do now?”, which was temporary!  Isn’t that a funny feeling?  Kinda like when someone puts resistance on your arms while you try to raise them, and then when they stop your arms seem to “float” effortlessly!  Oh well, that lasted only a few hours. :)

Anyway, Fluffy was so happy to find the box of Cuddle Fur Scraps!  I mean HAPPY!  When Meiko challenged, she stood her ground, I mean box!  LOL

Can you find Fluffy in the box above?  She is on her back, with her head to the right of her body. 

Those are the scraps from the neatest Tidy Travel Pillow for my sister out of that Cuddle.   It is like a stuffed animal for an adult.  Only without personality!  I forgot to take a picture of it!  I also made one for the store, so I’ll have to photograph that and include it here later.

In addition to the usual Christmas decoration, I decided to put a quilt on the dining room table.  I loved it!  When a quilt is on the bed, you don’t get to study the quilting.  And this quilting is fabulous.  Jan Hutchison quilted it back in 2007 for me for the Central Kansas Quilt Shop Hop.  I have really enjoyed studying it up close!






Since Christmas, I’ve written 12 email newsletter!  I usually joke that I send out my weekly newsletter once a month!  But since I got the brilliant idea to offer a gift a day for the Twelve Days of Christmas, I had my work cut out for me!  It went over well and now I’ve got some more ideas perculating, so 2013 looks promising!

Our group of Central Kansas quilt shop owners met in mid-December.  That’s me far back to the left of center.  We’ve already started working on the 2013 Central Kansas Quilt Shop Hop.  This October there will be 12 shops, and the group is having fun working on a theme, custom fabric & prizes!  Stay posted, but mark October 4, 5 & 6 and plan to bring some friends!  Check the website: and Marie, left front, is blogging about it, which should be interesting, since she’s our newest member!


I have been working on a new quilt, CONTESSA, by the Kansas design team, Toni & Jenny of Wing and A Prayer Designs.  It seemed to be going well, til I shot this photo, and noticed that I had turned two squares.  I’ve already ripped and re-stitched.  Better to catch it before it is quilted!  You do have to look pretty close to see it!

This class will probably start in April.  It looks like CONTESSA is going to meet evenings, the 2nd Thursday of the month.  We’re exploring the possibilities of meeting from 6:30 to 7:30.  Let me know if you’re interested. 

Oh yea!  Just remembered we’re also participating in VISIT YOUR LOCAL QUILT SHOP DAY.  That is coming up in just a couple of weeks. 

All day Thursday January 24th we’re going to be showing & demonstrating all different types of fusible products.  Touching & feeling is something you just can’t do here on the internet!  We’ll demo & discuss paper-backed fusible web, batting, stabilizers for t-shirts, purses, bowls, vinyl Slicker Glossy & more!  The demonstrations will go on all day, so stop in anytime, 9:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. January 24th. 

There is currently a PHOTO CONTEST being sponsored by FabShopHop.  For details on how you might win $500, go to!/QuiltShopDay and then come take your picture at Charlotte’s Sew Natural in Historic Downtown Newton!!

Anyway, 2013 will be another busy & fun year.  We’re off to a great start.  Hope you are too!


12 Days of Christmas Gifts

We had a good Christmas holiday here in Newton.  It presented challenges for some.  LOL

Christmas falling on Tuesday has given a weird tilt to the work week!  What day is it anyway?!  :)

I just started a new Twelve Days of Christmas promotion in my store.  If you don’t get my email newsletters, you can check it out here:

It is unique only in the fact that I’m following the traditional view and not the popular song or the common (retailers’ ?) view that the 12 days fall somewhere between Thanksgiving and Christmas.

The Twelve Days of Christmas are the festive days beginning Christmas Day and ending on the Twelfth Night of Christmas which is always on the evening of January 5th.

It was fun and interesting to research this very old and traditional period on the calendar.

Currently, the twelve days and nights are celebrated in widely varying ways around the world. For example, some give gifts only on Christmas Day, some only on Twelfth Night, and some each of the twelve nights.

Celebrants observing the Twelve Days may give gifts on each day of the Twelve Days representing a wish for a corresponding month of the new year. 

The significance of the twelve days of Christmas to Christians is that they mark the time between when Jesus was born and when he was visited by the Wise Men. In some countries, Epiphany, January 6, is the more traditional date for giving gifts than is Christmas day. These gifts symbolize the gifts brought by the Wise Men, also called the Three Kings, or Magi.

Growing up, our family used this date as a deadline for when our home-made Christmas presents actually had to be finished and delivered.  We used the school break time to get lots done!  :)

I personally like the theory that the Magi were religious scholars, rabbis and astronomers, travelling with a large entourage, “following the star”, or some other astrological phenomenon. 

As a theoretical astrophysicist, Grant Mathews spent two years in research which led him to conclude that the heavenly sign around the time of the birth of Jesus Christ was likely an unusual alignment of planets, the sun and the moon.

For more on Grant Mathews’ theory, go to:

Grant Mathews, a Notre Dame astrophysicist, points at a computer generated demonstration of the night sky of April 17, 6 B.C. in the Digital Visiualization Theater at the University of Notre Dame.

Enlightening to me is the fact that NASA has databases which with “In principle, we can see any star that was ever made from the beginning of time if we knew where to look. So the question is, could we find a star that could be a good candidate for what showed up then?” Mathews said referring to the “star” that the Biblical Wise Men are following.  Fascinating!

Exclusive BATIK for Quilt Shop Hop

This is the 14th year that we have had a Central Kansas Quilt Shop Hop.  Each year we “tweek” it a bit.  In addition to the fabric for the 12″ quilt block, this year’s kits will include a silver plated CHARM.  Visit all 11 shops & collect all 11 quilt related charms!

And, again, we’ve got a custom BATIK fabric from Hoffman, which can only be purchased from participating shops, as it was designed exclusively for the 11 member quilt shops!

At the downtown store, you can now pre-order 2012 Central Kansas Exclusive Shop Hop Custom Sunflower Batik Fabric, 100% cotton, 45″ wide.
This year there is more limited availability, so we won’t be taking as many pre-orders.  We also have T-shirts & Shop Hop collectible pins available now too.

You may pick up the fabric in the store, any time after the start of the Hop or we will mail your fabric to you.

This fabric is hand painted and every yard is slightly different. The image here contains a collage of pieces cut from different bolts & sections of the bolt. Intensity of colors change from multi-color to primarily red. The background is ‘blacklight’, and matches Hoffman’s 1895-537 hand-dyed watercolor fabric.

The large sunflower is approx. 4″ in diameter.  The large leaf is approx. 3″ long.   Click here for more details and to order.

Starting in early September, each of the 11 shops will reveal their unique quilt featuring this exclusive fabric. 

During the Quilt Shop Hop, for 3 days only, you’ll be able to visit each store and purchase their unique sampler block kit, which includes the pattern & fabric for a 12″ finished block, plus a silver-plated QUILT CHARM.  Visit all 11 shops and you’ll be rewarded with a special “Thank You” gift too!

In late September, but before the Hop, you’ll be able to see photographs of all of the quilts at the web site:

I am very excited about my quilt, and am looking forward to seeing what the long-arm quilter adds to it with the quilting.  Patterns and kits will be available in limited numbers.  Hope you like it!

Random Sewing

“Random” sewing is harder than it seems, at least for some of us!  In addition to loosening up with a glass of wine, or in this case, a pitcher of margaritas, here’s a more often used “crutch” – put all the fabrics in brown paper bags, draw from them in no particular order, and stitch whatever comes out unless it is the same as one of the last 2 previous pieces.

My quilt has actually come along pretty well. It is still supposed to be a “secret”, but I am really pleased with how it has turned out, and will be unveiling the completed quilt soon. :)

When the machine quilter came to pick it up, she made me look at lots of quilt pattern options! Oh my! I think we’ve picked some good stuff though, so stay tuned!

Fluffy gave her big fluffy stamp of approval by spending the past two days curled up in my Shop Hop Quilt project box! LOL