Quilts in Common

Welcome to our quilting world!

Update on Hexie quilt

My progress so far…

Actually, I have all those bottom “flowers” attached now. I gave it to my sister-in-law to pick out a border and backing fabric. I can’t wait to see what she comes up with!!!


February 26, 2018 Posted by | Handwork, Quilting | Leave a comment

Pink and Blue Needlepoint Bag

I made this needlepoint piece many years ago- when dusty pinks and blues were in style. It has golden metallic thread that adds some sparkle to the design, but are hard to capture in a photo.

I had a hard time finding a good way to use it because I always thought the colors dated it. I came up with pairing it with more modern colors to try and freshen it up. It worked!


February 26, 2018 Posted by | Bags, Handwork | Leave a comment

Aunt Bea’s Cross Stitched Quilt

A long, long time ago, my Aunt Bea went on a trip to Colorado and brought home a kit to make a cross stitched quilt. Now Aunt Bea doesn’t sew, embroider, or quilt. But she fell in love with the quilt. So, she asked me to make it for her. I worked on it here and there, but I didn’t really have much time for handwork. First I had a busy work schedule, then I raised my sons, and so on. It always seemed to take a back seat. Then…. Aunt Bea was turning 90!!! And she was having a big birthday party to celebrate. What better gift could I give than a finished quilt! Suddenly- it was a mad rush. I was just beginning my quilting journey and had no idea how to machine quilt a queen sized quilt! The markings that were on the top would need a top-notch free motion quilter to pull them off. I decided to just do a simple outline quilting and call it good.


At her party, she was so happy to receive it! She put it on her bed right away and there it stayed. Every time I visited her, I would take a look at it and realize how much I had improved since then. When she passed away, the quilt came back to me. I spread it out over the bed to get a good photo of it. It will always remind me of my Aunt Bea. 🙂

January 24, 2018 Posted by | Embroidery, Handwork, Quilting | Leave a comment

A treasured family heirloom

Eva's Grandmother's Flower Garden

This was made by my Great-Great Grandmother in 1932 when she was 79 years old! My aunt has been keeping it, and now she gave it to me! Wow! What a beauty!

Eva's Grandmother's Flower Garden closer view

Classic 1930’s fabrics. Great scrappy substitutions. Lovely hand quilting.

Detailed Embroidery on Eva's Grandmother's Flower Garden

Such a treasure. I never got to meet her, but her handwork lives on. I feel honored to be the one to hold on to this piece of our family history. This quilt inspires me to make the most of my quilting creations 🙂 Happy sewing, everyone!

January 20, 2014 Posted by | Handwork, Quilting | 1 Comment

A little hostess gift

I was invited to a sweet luncheon with some girl friends

luncheon at mildredSo I made a little hostess gift to bring along….

You are loved hexie ornament


July 29, 2013 Posted by | Handwork | Leave a comment

Hexie Progress

We are back from vacation! I have a ton of pictures to post about that- but first my progress on the hexie project.

Hexie Progress June 17 2013


So far I am really enjoying the process. I didn’t know what to expect.  Not being a fan of hand quilting, I had my doubts.  Hexagon piecing, though, goes much faster, and none of the uneven stitching shows on the front. I am happy to be back to my machine, but I will definitely try to squeeze in a little more handwork time 🙂



June 17, 2013 Posted by | Handwork, Quilting | Leave a comment

Happy Mother’s Day!

Kinda late…. sorry about that. My wonderful son made me some Mother’s Day presents that I just had to share with you.








A key chain made with knotted paracord and copper “S” initial, and a ring made of two-tone copper wire with a dual Josephine knot. Aren’t these the most thoughtful gifts ever? What a blessing children are! 🙂

I hope you all had a wonderful Mother’s Day!


May 16, 2012 Posted by | Handwork, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A little handwork…

I have always loved handwork. My Maternal Grandmother taught me how to embroider  and crochet at a very young age—sometime between 3 and 5—and, therefore,  handwork will always hold a special place in my heart. She had a very unique way of teaching me. It was probably not unique back then, but it seems unique today. She was always working on a handwork project: embroidering flowers on a pillowcase, crocheting a lovely variegated lace to the edge of a pillowcase, or embroidering a detailed scene on a tapestry.  She must have been constrained by her location (rural farm country in the Midwest), her numerous duties (a farmer’s wife, mother of 5 children, caretaker of her sick brother, manager and head chef and baker of her family restaurant) and her economic status (a struggling immigrant family); but as far back as I can remember, she never failed to be working on something to keep her hands busy in those few idle moments of the day. Her approach to teaching me these skills was to have me simply work on her project while she was busy with her various tasks. She would be right there if I needed any help, but she didn’t really give me any specific instruction. She just assumed that I would pick up where she had left off and continue in the same style and direction that she had already chosen for the piece.  Her pieces were not beginner level by any means. She never fussed over my contribution, never told me to be more careful, or ever seemed disappointed in my work. I don’t know if she always ripped out everything I had added during the week and redid it—she never mentioned it—but her pieces all look perfect.

Now today, things have changed. You don’t see women doing handwork very often. It is not as popular as it was back then. I feel more and more hindered in my choices of handwork by the fact that the choices are becoming so limited or so expensive. Even stores like Joann’s that specialize in crafts are not even carrying many handwork supplies or kits.

Well, that is not going to stop me! I am determined to continue doing my handwork until either my eyes or my wrists give out. So at the completion of my last needlepoint project, I had a rather difficult time procuring a replacement. I spent hours searching Google maps for stores that would sell needlepoint projects. I visited several stores. Their inventory is small and very expensive.

I then spent hours on the internet looking for books with project ideas. Finally armed with a lovely project in a book checked out from the library, I returned to the needlepoint store to buy canvas and yarn. Feeling confident that I was going to be starting on a new project by the end of my visit, I showed my choice to the clerk. She explained to me that my choice had 27 colors in it. She no longer could stock needlepoint wool because the manufacturer was no longer making it, and she has found no suitable wool replacement. She could offer me a silk/wool mix yarn instead, but that would run  $5.85/skein. Over $150  for the yarn alone!  Well, that does not fit into my handwork budget. I like to spend most of my craft money on quilting fabric- not yarn! I don’t buy yarn for my crocheting or knitting- instead I use recycled yarn from sweaters I buy at a thrift shop for a buck. I unravel them and wind them up into balls. I was not going to spend $150 on a single needlepoint project. I had to come up with another solution. I looked online for cheap needlepoint wool. I found it for 79 cents/skein! And they also sold canvas! Perfect! But they didn’t have the exact colors my pattern called for because of the decreased production, and the canvas was $42/yard—plus shipping. Okay, maybe I haven’t found my solution after all.

I explained my aggravation to my husband, who can reduce a month’s long search and untold frustration into a single sentence with no difficulty at all. He listened attentively and calmly said, “Just use all the yarn you already have around here.”  Didn’t he listen to anything I had just said? I am collecting sweater yarn to crochet with! Not multiple shades of the same color and texture and size to be used to create an almost painted effect on a needlepoint canvas!

I pretty much gave up. I started shopping for clearance kits on the internet with pictures of things I wasn’t interested in sewing at all. I went to several thrift shops looking for discarded kits.  I would drool over the Ehrman tapestries and actually felt that maybe $100 for a single kit wasn’t so bad a price after all!

Then… I finally processed what my dear husband was trying to get through to me. Design my project around the yarn I already have! Work backwards so to speak. Genius! Who would have thought!

I checked out a ton more books from the library (at least the library still has some books on needlework).  Now I was searching not for the most lovely shaded flower, but instead for a geometric pattern with a minimum of colors and absolutely no shading at all. I found several books with some beautiful options.

I finally settled on a Tunisian motif in Sue Hawkins’ Heirlooms in Needlepoint. I emptied all my yarn stash baskets out on the bed and began to put some color options together. Amazingly, it was pretty simple. I coupled wool yarn with acrylic with cotton and with unknown blends. This is going to be some experiment kept going through my head. I found needlepoint canvas on clearance at Joann’s for $3.97/yard. They had 4 yards- I cleaned them out.

I started my new project this week: here is my progress so far.

Now I have a whole new angle to my thrift store sweater shopping. Will I ever be able to find multiple shades? Probably not—but that won’t stop me from looking!

April 18, 2012 Posted by | Handwork | Leave a comment