Thursday, December 12, 2013

Treadle Sewing Machine for Sale - Sold!!

Check my website later today for more pictures

Treadle sewing machine for sale. I hate to part with it, but  5 machines are just too many. Getting ready to test some stitches. 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Baton Rouge Bound!

Had a wonderful day today on the first leg of my Baton Rouge trip. Visited my sister and got to see a lot of family at the shop. A great niece,Lillian Grace, made me two grilled cheese sandwiches, which to the unimaginative, looked like two sets of yellow paper sandwiched between white pages. I visited a dear, dear friend, Patsy Kirkham, for a while then had supper with my grandson. I'm at my son's house tonight, and we have had a great time talking. I am truly blessed.

I can't wait to see my nurse friends of long standing at the reception tomorrow. 

I hope to visit some quilt shops around Baton Rouge. I brought some Mug Bucket and Jitter Bucket patterns, plus some samples to show. If course, I'm always open to scheduling a lecture or workshop later. I love Louisiana!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Cargo Crate Prototype Garners Interest at Quilt Market

I used the Cargo Crate to carry samples  picked up at Market and the materials I needed for classes. This was the first time that I had actually used the Cargo Crate.  I knew it was a good design, but I wanted to put it in use to make sure it was seaworthy.  I got a tremendous amount of interest at Quilt Market and a few suggestions that I will add before finalizing the pattern.  The main addition will be a water bottle holder. I love the oil cloth, and the vendor where I bought it last year did too.  She wants me to make one for her booth.  More on that later.  I do believe that this will go over as well as the Mug Bucket when everyone finds out how handy the rolling crates can be and that they can be purchased at Office Depot.
After removing the cover, it folds flat for travel.

Training Magic Dog Treats

I've been at the Houston Quilt Market and Festival since Friday, and I'm already missing Elle Mae, my 7 year old half poodle, half whatever that includes some terrier. Both the poodle and the terrier combined make for a very smart dog, but unless she gets the Magic Treats, she backslides.  (Don't we all backslide when we quit getting positive feedback or rewards. 
Before I left home, I made her special treats so she would behave for my house sitter. 
These Magic Treats may vary, based on the leftovers that I have frozen for this special dish.  Beware, only bake these when you can have all the windows open.

I can Mackerel
2 eggs
Leftover baked sweet potatoes, carrots, potatoes (you get the idea)
Leftover lean meats
2-3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
Powdered Milk - several tablespoons

Place the first 5 ingredients in the blender and process until smooth.  Add flour until it is too thick to process any more, then place in a bowl and add more flour until the mixture is the consistency of thick cookie dough.
Place dough on parchment paper heavily sprinkled with flour on a cookie sheet.  Sprinkle more flour on top and push the dough to the edges of the cookie sheet.  Sprinkle more flour on top and score the dough with a pizza cutter into 1" or smaller squares.
Bake at 350 degrees for about  30 minutes, then at 250 degrees until dry.  About half way through, I use a spatula to flip over the treats so they will bake very dry.  I have placed them in the microwave to finish this last step. If dry enough, you do not have to refrigerate them.

Break them up and see your best friend's eyes light up.

Celebrities at Houston Quilt Market and Festival

Met Lesley Riley today and so many others yesterday.  I've used her TAP transfer product many times. 

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Quilt Market & Festival in Houston

At the Quilt Market in Houston. Drove in around 2pm and did a quick walk through, covering about half the exhibitors. I'm so excited to be here. Can't wait to see the rest of the exhibits and the quilts. The Quilt Festival preview is Wednesday night, but classes start now. I'm anxious to see the other pattern designers and take classes on improving the designing process and marketing my patterns.

I'll tell you later about the fabulous hotel we lucked up on.  

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Sister's response to FB post

The following is from my younger sister after she saw my new pattern on

Your talent is very much known and admired , even in other countries like Pine Bluff. Wish I had spent more time watching you sew when we were  kids  instead of  the time i spent thinking of ways to to sneak out the door before school with some of your clothes on.

See the post on my FB page. 
Funny it isn't it?  

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Jitter Bucket 5 quart bucket with Piping

Adding piping to the Jitter Bucket pockets and slightly adjusting the pocket fabrics gives a new look to this Buckets Gone Wild! design. The self made piping actually makes the seams sharper. I don't particularly like the fabric, but the piping does make a statement.  I'm going to try it next with juvenile prints.

 Trim outside fabric 1 inch; add 2 inches to lining.
 Slip piping between main fabric & lining on pocket.  Stitch with cording or pearl foot.
 Turn back fabric and trim cording before joining.
 Press seam up.
  Fold lining to back, making contrasting band on front.
 Press pocket on outside.
 Topstitch close to piping, using cording foot.
  Stitch piping to lower edge of pockets.
   Turn back binding and trim cording. 
 Follow piping stitch line to join binding to body
 Press binding away from piping.
 Turn binding to inside and stitch.
  Turn bucket upside down & cover with batting.
 Glue fabric circle to bottom.
 Secure fabric edges with tape.
  Use alternating scraps to make bail cover and trim.
Enjoy your Jitter Bucket!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Buckets Gone Wild! Beginnings

I designed my first bucket organizer to carry my soft doll making supplies to the Fabricators Doll Club in Little Rock. This is one of my early dolls that I showed to the Conway AR Machine Embroiderers when explaining how I got from nurse to pattern designer.  The 5 gallon Tote all Bucket organizer was designed to carry my doll making supplies and was followed by the 5 quart ice cream or paint bucket organizer. The cup caddy or organizer came next and quickly became very popular, right behind the free walker tote pattern.

Monday, March 11, 2013

To Stitch Now or Later?

Quest Quilters Guild this am. A lot of folks are making some beautiful quilts. One new thing I heard and will have to try is not stitching around fused fabric until you quilt it. I'll have to give that a try n see what difference it makes. I'll try it on the body if my Mug Bucket, Go Bucket and Jitter Bucket organizer patterns.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Decorative stitching for Mug Bucket pockets

Do you ever wish you knew how to use all those decorative stitches on your sewing machine?  Recently I did a stitch bible for my Bernina, alternating the stitch width and length, and was amazed at the different looks the same stitch gave.  At first I marked the stitch length and the stitch width when I made a change and then decided that was an unnecessary move.  All I really needed to know was what the stitch was capable of looking like. I've been embellishing Mug Bucket pockets, and decorative stitches are definitely a part of  the plan.
If your machine has a memory function and you want to isolate a stitch, such as a heart, to randomly sprinkle on your project, program a lock stitch, memory key, decorative stitch, memory key, lock stitch and finish with the memory key.  This works on my machine but may not yours..
Take a look at this YouTube video for using those decorative stitches:

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Safe Holder for Rotary Cutters

Today's tip:  At the beginning of the school year, these little pencil holders sell for as little as a quarter at the office supply stores and WalMart. I find them perfect for my rotary cutters and can even squeeze the 60mm rotary cutter in one.  I keep my machine needles in another. 
I'll be thinking up new uses before next year's school sales.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Tip for today: Don't lean back!!

My studio is fairly good sized, but it seems that I'm always bumping one of my two rolling chairs into the sewing table or my old Singer cabinet. I read the other day where someone took the back off a desk chair to get more room. Well, I did it!
So far it is working great. I never leaned back while I was working, only when I wanted to admire something I had finished sewing. I only miss it when I want to grab the back to move it. I'll give it another week or so before I take the other chair back off.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Easy machine needle threading

Today's tip:  Place painter's tape behind the needle when threading.  You can see the eye better and can secure the thread as it comes through by pressing the tape against the needle.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Today's Tip: Painter's Tape is Clearly Visible

Today's tip is about that blue painter's tape we all love.  I use it on clear pastic covers such as rotary and bobbin covers so that when I drop them, they don't blend in with the background.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Designing Woman: Why and How I Make Patterns

I gave a talk at the Quest Quilt Guild this week on why and how I make patterns.  I usually start with an expressed need for an item that isn't on the market.  I look around to see what is similar, take pictures, measure and test.  I may make three or four models as I design my organizer sewing patterns.  I take pictures each step of the way so that the patterns are easy to follow for even the practiced beginner. My girls are always willing to test the models and give honest feedback.
I love the creative process and wish I had more time to design these personalized organizers. The positive feedback I receive is rewarding in and of itself. 

Shableysart by Sharon Bailey

The work of Sharon Bailey of Shableysart.  We spent some time together this afternoon exploring's webhosting.  Her website will be up soon and you can see it all at

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Barbara Brosnan's Comment on Walker Tote

Thank you so much for sharing this pattern!  This is perfect for my grandmother, she insists on carrying her purse when using her walker.  It is constantly slipping down her arm and we are so nervous that it is going to make her fall.  This walker bag is the perfect solution.  I am going to have my 10 year old do most of the work, so it will be special to her and she will be sure to use it.  Barbara Brosnan

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Self-Guided Art Retreat

On an art retreat to celebrate my birthday. Beautiful view and nice, large room to spread out. Going to move the desk in front of the window for my machine. Extra bed is my cutting and design area and..... Will keep you posted.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Stupendous Stitching Art Quilt

I've been working on Carol Ann Waugh's Craftsy class called Stupendous Stitching. I did a lot of couching and decorative stitching that you can see on my Facebook page,
On this view, I sandwiched the top with felt and backing and stitched a lot more. I chose felt instead of the recommended fleece as I'm not going to mount it on a frame.