Category Archives: original designs

Fire and Ice / Right Brain Left Brain

“A woman’s life is nine parts mess to one part magic.  You’ll learn that soon enough….and the parts that look like magic turn out to be the messiest of all.” – George R. R. Martin, A Clash of KingsFire and Ice

This is the outcome of “Right Brain Left Brain” seen previously here.


Today brings looking back on the past year.  Lots of changes, messiness and magic”  This quilt incorporates them all.  Don’t ask what my plan for it is, it’s just the magic of creation.


20131228-230902.jpgHand quilted, machine pieced, hand appliqued








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Water Lilies Finished

Its a cloudy, hot and sultry day.  The good news is that I completed the Water Lilies project that I was pretty excited about a couple of months ago.  It’s been slow going getting the hand quilting done since the weather has turned hot.  It’s much easier to sit under a nice warm unfinished quilt when the weather is cold!


I had trouble deciding on a border, so I finally opted for NO border.  The entire quilt is hexagons.

Here are a couple of closeups of the details.closeup2And another….Closeup1The size is 60X68

Hand quilted, machine pieced, hand appliqued

Completed:  July 2013


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Right Brain, Left Brain, Frontal, Temporal?

During my long walk this morning I listened to a podcast that talked about the right brain and drawing, and more generally just how the brain sections interact to spark creativity.  It’s such an interesting topic to think about how neurons and chemicals interacting can cause such wonderful things to happen.  So I’ve decided to look a little at my latest creative process.

I’m fascinated with tesselating shapes.  I think of it kind of the same way as neurons and neurotransmitters interacting.  I’ve been studying Jinny Beyer’s quilts and her book about tesselations.

square designThis is a quarter of the square and the templates created from that square.

templatesThe next job was fabric selection, cutting and sewing together.  Then the magic starts!

overall designNext come uneven borders in the eggplant color that will be enhanced with applique.

applique patternThe pattern was transferred on to the dark fabric by using a lightbox and going over the design on the reverse side of the fabric with chalk.  The applique fabric is then basted on to the right side of the fabric from the design on the wrong side ( now that takes some brain power!)

prep appliqueThe applique design begins to emerge as the fabric is cut away and hand appliqued on to the front of the border.  Voila!

applique emergingSo that’s what my brain has been doing this week!  The exercises have been great!  Happy Brain exercising to you too!


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Summer in the Great Basin

“The desert seems to be a brown wasteland of dry, prickly scrub whose only purpose is to serve as a setting for the majestic saguaros. Then, little by little, the plants of the desert begin to identify themselves: the porcupiny yucca, the beaver tail and prickly pear and barrel cacti, buckhorn and staghorn and devil’s fingers, the tall, sky-reaching tendrils of the ocotillo.”
Jerry Spinelli, Stargirl


The Yucca have come into bloom in the high desert.  They defy the usual image of a dry, brown summer that one often thinks of in the desert.  The blooms are beautiful, white and lily-like.

yucca1The spiky  leaves become a beautiful and fresh green.

Here is my interpretation of the yucca.

yuccaSize: 30×30

machine appliqued, hand quilted

Completed 2002

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Water Lilies

“I think that the best kind of change, is the change that comes from the inside and begins it’s way out until it emerges on the outside; a change that is born underneath then continues and spreads until  it has reached the surface.  That’s a true change.  A powerful change. And I have found that while we are emerging, changing into something glorious; it is actually us becoming who we really are.  A water lily is born underneath the water, inside the soil at the bottom of the river or lake.  And the water lily has always been a water lily for that whole time that it was sprouting out of the wet soil, reaching up through the dark water towards the sunlight, stretching and grasping for the surface; where it then buds and blooms on the outside in the sunshine.  It doesn’t bud and bloom on the surface and then try to reach down below into the soil.”  – C. JoyBell C.

This is not my usual MO.  I usually finish a piece before I share it.  But I really like this one.  I love the colors and I love the depth…20130327-012100.jpg

Details of size, etc. will have to wait until it is complete!



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Magical Realism and quilting

snow2The Wasatch mountains are shrouded in clouds this morning.  There are 8-10 inches of new show in the valley.  The sun shines through the clouds and makes the world look magical and clean and pure.  If only we could spread our magic fairy dust around the world today….snow1Yesterday I attended a performance of a relatively new opera “Florencia en el Amazonas” by Daniel Catan.  The theme of the story was described as “magical realism” and compared to the authors Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Isabel Allende.  In fact the plot of the story was loosely based on the Marquez work “Love in the Time of Cholera”.  Essentially it is the blending of the real and the spiritual into a common form.  It reminded me a a quilt that I completed earlier.

magical realismThe center wreath is comprised of 1 1/2 in.  pieces selectively pieced from a large floral print.  The large floral print is featured in machine applique in the corners of the piece.  Hence, the magical realism – – creating something else from a “real” image.

Size: 30×30

Finished 2007

machine pieced, machine appliqued, hand quilted

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Sunrise Sunset

After a month of the poorest air quality in the United States, I woke up this morning to blue sky, clear air and could see both sets of mountains from here in the valley.  I went out on the porch to soak up some good vitamin D and take in the wonderful view of the snow covered mountains. It didn’t last too long.  It is now completed clouded over and the snow is starting while the icicles continue to drip from the eaves.

This brought to mind the thought of  this quilt.  The compass/sun is split into opposite corners with the flowers appliqued down the center.  sunrise sunset

So now its back to imagining the sun once again.  I hope the next inversion doesn’t last as long as the last one.  Although staying inside has the upside of letting me quilt and dream!

Finished: 2009

Size: 54×54

machine pieced, hand appliqued, hand quilted

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