Saturday, August 27, 2016

Weekend Abstractions - Week 3

I'm in beautiful northern Wisconsin on Perch Lake enjoying a little time away in the north woods.  It's good to get back to essentials and the simple things; my family, the beauty of nature and s'mores over a dwindling fire.  Worries seem to get absorbed in the breeze and I can spend the days filling my cup, remembering who I am, what I love and enjoy life in a way that hasn't come easy lately. The lake is like glass and I've been mesmerized by how the water moves and changes as it is disturbed by water bugs, jumping husbands and Sideways gliding through the water.  

Rings of water everywhere.  I don't have my usual materials with me so I'm a bit handicapped by only having a computer, but I wanted to keep up the routine and share a few things with you.  I love the ripples that float outward when a droplet of water drips from the end of my fishing rod and shatters the glassy surface and the rings multiply magically, though I think this looks more like an eight ball on a pool table or a giant scary eye.  I would like to play with a bit of bias tape to see what might happen with this idea.

Sideways loves to swim and as he moves through the water he makes a sort of wake behind him that looks a bit like these nested ovals.  
I like them when they're put together in pairs.  I think it forms cool shapes in the negative space and has this kind of groovy 70's feeling.

Kind of fun to think of how it might look in color.

Tomorrow I'll be on my way home, stronger, centered, and ready to tackle the regular routine.  Thanks for the kind words about the book.  I appreciate you joining me here.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Sideways Has a Secret!

Sideways has a secret.  Look at that face.  He's been trying to keep this info to himself, but he asked if he could spill the beans on the blog.  Why not!

Sideways and I are happy to announce that I have a new book coming out this fall on October 4th. He wanted desperately to be a part of the book so he sidled his way into a few of the photos, though he didn't make it into the book.  He thinks he enhances the quilting!

Yup, the book is all about quilting...walking foot quilting, that is.  I have to tell you that writing this book has ignited a new love for the quilting process.  I've been experimenting and creating new designs and techniques that I think all of you are going to love as much as I do.  It's a comprehensive book that I hope will be great for beginners, but also for those of you who are experienced and want to take your quilting to the next level.

Here are just a few of the over 40 designs that are in the book. Walk is available for pre-order on Amazon now.  I'll open pre-orders on my website soon so you can pre-order a signed copy or talk to your local shop owner and let them know about the book.  

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Weekend Abstractions - Week 2

Here is my abstraction for this weekend.  Last week I used triangles to create the shapes that interested me.  Today it's half circles.  It's interesting how changing the positions of the circles or adding different shapes in different positions affects the design.  I think there is potential here.  I'm looking forward to more exploration with this one.  Sometimes I see a quilt top and sometimes I see blocks that could come together in interesting ways.

I liked last week's design so much, I decided to make a quilt top out of it.  I don't know if all of these will become tops, but it's good to have options.  My favorite part of this design is that tension in the connections between the black spaces.  I also find it interesting that so many of you didn't even see the white triangles the first time you looked at the design.  

Now I have to figure out how to quilt it....a continuing dilemma in my world.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Weekend Abstractions

I've decided to try and dedicate myself to blogging more regularly.  I'm not sure if I can do it with my schedule, but a goal is a good thing to have.  I know I talked about the big announcement...I'll do that in a few days, but for today, I've decided to start a once a week, regular post called Weekend Abstractions to share quilt designs that I've been playing with.  It's fun to share and I hope you'll be as inspired as I am.

For your viewing pleasure:

Weekend Abstraction #1

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Quilts at Home

Quilts at home.  It makes me happy to be surrounded by quilts. Check back soon for an exciting announcement.  How's that for a tease?

Friday, April 1, 2016


Sometimes I like to write.
I don't have any preconceived notions of what quilters are supposed to do.  I make things work for me and my style.  I'm not bound by what others have done or what anyone says I must do. For the most part I'm brave. I put fear aside and just do it. I ask myself what would happen if and then I'm strong enough to try, to fail and to try again until I create what pleases me.  I believe in myself.  It's what keeps me coming back for more.  I think I can, so I do.  I believe ducks have it right.  The water rolls off their backs and they don't even feel it.  I aspire to be a duck because in life rain does fall. I appreciate those who like my work, but I don't work to please anyone but myself.  I am not my number of followers. I listen to those I respect and understand that I have much to learn from others. I make mistakes and move forward. Balance is everything.  I'm working to achieve it.


Monday, December 14, 2015

You Could be "Mighty Lucky" too!

I'm so excited to be part of the Mighty Lucky Quilting Club.  It's the first of its kind and you can be a part of it too.  It's a monthly subscription club that focuses on challenging quilters with different aspects of the quilting process. All challenges are design-focused with instruction, inspiration, and exercises from a team of talented designers and quilt makers.  I'm pretty thrilled to be part of this group of folks. I can't reveal what my month will be all about, but I'm excited about it and I can't wait to learn new things together and isn't challenging ourselves and learning new things what makes  us become better quilters? Challenges will be delivered by PDF on the first day of the month to the subscriber’s registered email account, beginning in January 2016. 

Subscriptions are just $5 per month, or $50 for the entire year. Quilters can receive any “backdated” challenges if they subscribe at the $50 rate any time during the year. That's a whole lot of learning for a great price.  You know, a quilty gift to yourself might be nice this time of year.

Look at the list of folks we get to learn from:
January - Krista Fleckenstein
February - Season Evans
March - Rossie Hutchinson
April - Alison Glass
May - Amy Gibson
June - Angela Walters
July - Cheryl Arkison
August - Sarah Fielke
September - Yours truly
October - Nicole Vogelsinger
November - Amanda Jean Nyberg
December - Carolyn Friedlander

Each designer will also be featured on a Crafty Planner podcast ( within their month. During the podcast, they’ll discuss the challenge and talk in-depth about their design process with host and podcaster Sandi Hazlewood.

As a part of the club, you'll get support from your designer during the month and an opportunity to share your work on instagram #mightylucky and they'll be giveaways and most of all we'll be a learning community.  How fun is that!

If you'd like to be part of The Mighty Lucky Quilting Club, get all the details and sign up here.  I sure would love to work with you next September!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Quilt Local Blog Tour and (Giveaway!)

I remember when Heather Jones did her talk at QuiltCon on finding inspiration for quilts in everyday things.  Heather has now brilliantly translated that concept into her new book, Quilt Local from STC  Craft, an imprint of Abrams Books.  I agree with Heather, inspiration is all around us, but we need to train ourselves to notice and to see.  Heather shares four habits that she has adopted that help her observe, record and translate the inspiration around her.


Heather's Third Street quilt was one of many favorites in the book.  It was inspired by a grid on the back on an abandoned building. I love the lines (of course) and the asymmetry makes me so happy.  Simple surely is beautiful.  Each quilt in the book is paired with its inspiration and is done in two colorways for additional inspiration for the reader.

The Third Street Quilt
Photography by Jenny Hallengren

Heather asked that we share something in our local area that inspires us.  I live in the Westside neighborhood which is a small neighborhood right on the edge of downtown and the Crossroads Arts District in Kansas City.  This amazing building, the Kaufmann Center for the Performing Arts is just a few blocks from my house.  I walk by it all the time.  It's an awe inspiring building.  I love so much about it.  The simple sweeping curves and the spaces and shadows that are created are lovely.  I think about those sweeping curves all the time.

As I've been working with the activating space concept, I've kept the Kaufmann Center in mind.  I'm sure this won't be the only quilt inspired by that building.  The love how the curves come together to create other shapes.  

Even the one block on the back keeps the concept alive.  

As you can see I'm kind of hooked on this one.

Be sure to follow along with the rest of the Quilt Local blog tour to see more of Heather's quilts and more local inspiration from lots of talented folks.  If you'd like to win a copy, (and you know you do!!) just leave a comment and I'll draw a winner on Halloween at 5:00 central time.  Even better, get one for yourself right away and start being inspired by Quilting Local!

The winner chosen by the good ole random number generator is Wanda of Exuberant Color.  Send me your contact info and Abrams will send you your copy of the book.  Congratulations!!
10/10: Sew Mama Sew
10/11: Creative Bug
10/16: Pellon
10/29: Okan Arts
10/30: Kara Sews
11/11: Aurifil 

Monday, October 19, 2015

The Remodel - Kitchen and Living Room

I know I've been promising this for a long time, and today I had time to dig out the camera and take some photos in the house.  Buying this condo in Kansas City was all about the space, the high ceilings, the angles, the light.  Everything else was tacky, low quality or didn't work at all.  The kitchen was a dark cave with black countertops and backsplash and weird brown paneling on the walls and ceiling, not to mention a wall of cabinets that opened up in the living room.  There was no functionality or storage.  The entry and living room were filled with potential, but had buckling laminate bamboo floors and brown, painted metal mesh railings that looked like they were stolen from an office building.  Walls were painted a dull beige with a few accent walls randomly painted in murky green and gold.  Just about everything in the place has been touched by the remodel and I can't thank Jerad and Ryan from Studio Build in Kansas City for their vision, their patience and their awesome taste, quality work and design sense.

My vision was modern Jacquie, minimal with clean lines and bold color.  I was willing to take risks in this place that I wasn't brave enough to do in decorating all the other homes I've lived in.  I listened to my voice this time with only a little moderation from the design team and my husband.  I didn't think about resale.  I tried to stay true to how I wanted to live and how I wanted to feel in my home.  I agonized over every choice, floor, lighting, tile, paint color, cabinet color, cabinet layout, etc, etc.  It's not easy making all those choices without being able to see everything together.

Let's start with the entry, living room and kitchen.  Here are a couple of photos of what the place looked like before.  There were two giant frosted glass doors that went into a bedroom from the kitchen.  That is now the back wall of the kitchen.  You can get a glimpse of the mesh railings in the second photo.

This is what it looks like today.  I hope you enjoy.  I'm loving living in my place.  It was a six month adventure, but now that it's over, I don't remember any of the hassles.

You'll enter our place on the ground floor and come up the stairs to get to the main level.  The orange door and railing set the tone for the place.

The stairway wall goes up about 40 feet and so it needed a burst of color and interest.  I think the art does it for me.  I love coming up and going down those stairs.
The stairs come up right between the kitchen and living room.

At the top of the stairs the living room is to the left, kitchen to the right, but it's all one big room.
The end of the living room has a giant window that lets in loads of light.  My two mid century chairs are there.  It's where I sit to do handwork and where we'll sit in the chillier weather to enjoy the fireplace.
I had the chairs reupholstered and went bold this time.  No more safe beiges for me.
I have so much wall space that art is very important in this house.  Quilts move around the house as my mood changes.
The living area isn't big, but its totally functional for chilling out watching a movie or sitting and having conversation.  I found the vintage couch and chair at a local retro store.  I traded in my old orange sofa for a beautiful green one.  The color makes me so happy, though my boys thought I had taken it over the top.  They admitted they were wrong.  The coffee table I picked up years ago at a vintage shop. Steve finally got his recliner, but it's modern and Jacquie approved.
The credenza was a Chicago find.  It set the tone for the whole place.  In my mind it's an art piece.
I love the minimalist grandfather clock.  It's one member of my clock collection (obsession).
The fireplace is modern and sparkly.  I can't wait to enjoy it this winter.
I didn't go safe for my rug either.  I'm still pondering additional rugs for the house.  Again, all choices are hard.
The other end of the room is the dining room/kitchen.  The table was designed and built by the Studio Build guys.  My metal chairs work so well with it.  The metal hanger for the light over the table was fabricated by a nearby motorcycle shop.  
Everything in the kitchen is simple and functional.  I've been wanting to use the semi pendant lights since I first saw them in Chicago.  I knew they would be in this kitchen.
The upper cabinets lift up so I can reach everything.  No more cabinets above.  I don't need them and I couldn't reach them anyway.
We eat at the table and snack or chat at the counter bar.  Everyone gathers in the kitchen and there's room for loads.
Almost all the storage in the kitchen is in drawers.  I have all my dishes except glassware in drawers.  Makes setting the table and emptying the dishwasher a breeze.
The cabinet color was a challenge.  They're rift sawn oak with a blue/gray stain.  Took weeks and weeks to finally achieve the color I was going for.  It's so unique.  I adore it.  It's set off by the white counters and white upper cabinets.
The sink is a simple rectangle with an easy to use faucet.
Most everything in the kitchen is hidden including the coffee maker and microwave which are squirreled away in a cabinet next to the fridge.  I only have out things I use.
The kitchen connects seamlessly with the living room.
It's fun to be able to have a quilt hanging in the kitchen.  Have you noticed the position of this quilt has changed multiple times!

The tile backsplash was a quandry for me.  I'm so happy I chose this clear glass tile.  It's so calm and pulls everything together for me.

The rest of the main level is my husband's office and the guest bath.  They're next to show you.