Still celebrating The Quilt Festival.....Houston 2017

I make all the kids in my family Christmas gifts each year.  2017 began with pillowcase love, so that's what each will receive.   My original idea was to pin each child's pillowcase with a "sweet dreams" card which may or may not include money.....depending on the amount of naughty or nice they've been the past year!

Change of plans:  As I was shifting paper into recycle yesterday morning, I ran into The Festival program and had a voila moment.....why not use my time and talent to make each child a cute little origami box to slip the cash into! 

Quilt Festival Program paper for origami gift box

Quilt Festival Program paper for origami gift box

Not only will they each get a handmade pillowcase, but also  a handmade gift box to hold their money gift.  You see, I'm still celebrating Quilt Festival - I took glossy pages from the Festival program and made 16 little origami boxes yesterday. 

Origami-  folded paper gift boxesOrigami-  folded paper gift boxes

Origami-  folded paper gift boxes
I folded that glossy paper, refolded, then folded again to the finished number
Origami-  folded paper gift boxes
Let the holiday season sure has here at my house
and I'm loving it!

Diamonds can be a quilters' best friend !

I mentioned to another quilt maker the other day that I was prone to depression.  In retrospect, that's not really true.  You see, when the blues start touching my spirit, then we head over to the scrap bins and within minutes the oppressive and depressive feelings are gone. 


In there stead were diamonds - about 60 foundation paper pieced from scraps and strings completed over the past several days.  Oh, yes, I have a plan for every one. 

And, if that's not enough to cure the blues, the scrap bins were further downsized with these pouches now ready to donate to Bayou Creations booth, NELA Quilt Show, 2018. 

An Atkinson Design Pouch made for Bayou Creations by Marty Mason

An Atkinson Design Pouch made for Bayou Creations by Marty Mason

An Atkinson Design Pouch made for Bayou Creations by Marty Mason

An Atkinson Design Pouch made for Bayou Creations by Marty Mason

An Atkinson Design Pouch made for Bayou Creations by Marty Mason

An Atkinson Design Pouch made for Bayou Creations by Marty Mason

Sewing away the blues.......I'm feeling giddy!


What's going on?

Shhhhh.....I'm thinking!

About how I can put all of this Lonni Rossi created fabric into a minimalist-style quilt.

Well, perhaps not too minimalist.  Perhaps one that is rockin' hot, out of the box minimal. 

It was a few months ago that I was invited to attend the Red River Quilt Guild auction, garage sale and dinner party where I ran into a bag filled with all this fab fabric for only $10. You bet I grabbed it and very quickly put my money in the collection box.  Now that I've been looking at it, fondling just a bit, looking at it even more, it's time to do some serious thinking about how to put it into a modern, minimal, rockin' hot, out of the box, off the top, quilt. 

Shhhhhh.....I'm still thinking.


Just another typical morning ~

Whether there are clouds in morning sky or stars are in the night sky....there is always sunshine in my place.

I've made several decisions this morning to make my day even brighter.  Right off, I

And earlier in the week, one improvisational style quilt top came off  the design wall and is now ready to be quilted.  It's folded so you get only snippets as a tease. 


What's on the design wall?  In my zeal to use up scraps in the pile, I decided that a rag quilt made with whatever size scraps were there would work just fine for me.  Now, I'm second guessing my exuberance while sewing all those mis-matched size blocks together.  What should have been a couple of hours from start to quilt finish is now languishing in its third day.  Oh, well! 

It's October 5 and the Down The Rabbit Hole border of the month is well on it's way. One tulip almost finished. Another tulip and  four big leaping rabbits to go.   Yea!

Fabric shopping yesterday found four nice pieces of combed cotton batiste in my sewing room at the end of the day.   Yes, batiste in a quilt works beautifully.  (she says)

wheat, white, corn and blue

How diverse are these activities?  Smiling, as the sun continues to shine ~


End of August First of September

Catching up with myself today ~ 

Goal No. 1 accomplished - use as many scraps and otherwise unwanted fabrics of any size as possible before making any more fabric purchases.  Let's face it.....that's easier said than done!   But by the end of August two quilt-as-you-go quilts for the children in the CASA program were completed.  Washed, dried, stacked and ready to deliver.   Made very simple by sewing 5" x 10" rectangles together and adding each row to the quilt batting and backing in the sew and flip and press and sew and flip and press method to the last row. 

quilt as you go kid's quilt :  a project for community service

quilt as you go kid's quilt :  a project for community service

And started another scrap/string quilt project.  Five foundation paper pieced blocks are done for this project.....only 10 more to make. 

oundation paper piecing with scrap fabric

foundation paper piecing with scrap fabric

foundation paper piecing with scrap fabric

And excitement is in the it is only September 7 and Down The Rabbit Hole Month 8 addition is complete.  While this last border caused me some initial angst , this irregular hexagon border was a breeze to stitch up.   Now it's sit and anxiously wait until the end of September and beyond to get this year-long project finished.

Down The Rabbit Hole BOM thru 8th month - Marty Mason

So, it's TTFN.   Trust me, this shadow was edited to take off a little bit of weight! 


Houses for Houston

A group effort could get lots of houses, i.e. refrigerator magnets,  made and then sold and then money donated to  "Houses for Houston" or for any worthwhile fundraiser. 

I'm posting as a reminder that giving back, no matter how done, is a blessing. 

Praying for all who are in harms way today. 


And....just where have you been?

The days just get away from me.  The intentions are always great...the intentions to get a blog post completed, along with completing another community service quilt.  And it seems the need to make quilts for wee ones in need  has taken precedence these past few days. 

Taking a moment this morning to show some pictures of several of the fourteen quilts that will distributed to the Children of CASA headquarters today. 

First is a charming leftover from some quilter's "I don't want this anymore" box and all it needed was quilting.  Done and delivered to  a child in need. 

brown and cream log cabin quilt  donated to community serviceWell, well, well...............three "RAG" quilts all clipped, washed and dried for that special ragged edge appeal.    Rag quilts come together so quickly with totally unrelated 8" or 10" or even 12" inch blocks and scraps of left over quilt batting. 

Rag Quilt donated to community service

Rag Quilt donated to community service

Rag Quilt donated to community service



Kaffe Fassett  fabric
As much as I enjoyed making this quilt with all kaffe fassett fabrics, it just needed to move on.  A good size for community service.  Hoping a child in need enjoys the exuberant colors of kaffe fassett fabric. 

No strip of fabric goes to waste around here.   The old saying, "Waste Not, Want Not" is worthy of remembering. 
Strips of fabric sewn into a quilt for community service
 The red, white and blue log cabin quilt top was someone's leftover grabbed up by moi, knowing it would make a delightful quilt for some baby girl in need. 

log cabin in traditional blue and white

Yes, I'm a happy quilter today....not the least bit anxious or depressed or feeling needy....Hopeful that there will be more in the days ahead..... Smiling as these quilts move on to work magic and ease the pain of someone who is hurting. 


Of course I was disappointed ~

.......But certainly not sad that I entered The van Gogh Cherrywood Challenge 2017.  While my entry was not selected, I feel as though I am a winner for stepping outside my comfort zone.   I'm not comfortable when I put my work on display but that doesn't stop me from enjoying the process of making.  No, I don't like every quilt I make, but I always enjoy the process.  When that joy is no more, then I'll take up another hobby! 

Here's my entry.  The flowers and vase were  made using only Cherrywood hand dyed fabric cut into  those little tiny snippits of fabric that we call confetti.   Was it only last March when I participated in a workshop led by Nadine Cain that I learned about 'confetti art'.

The van Gogh Cherrywood Challenge 2017  by Marty Mason

The van Gogh Cherrywood Challenge 2017  by Marty Mason

No, I'm not the least bit sad with this pretty floral smiling down at me from my sewing studio wall.


When I'm Away.....I Play ~

I'm now back home from the most wonderful retreat house....the one called Tangi House....with a group of quilters who call themselves "The Pelican Partiers ."   We gather as a group, making our path over and down from Texas.... Monroe....Lafayette, Louisiana.  We call it meeting in the middle, twice a year for 4 glorious nights and days just sewing and laughing.  We mix it up with a little bit of a chocolate martini, mango margarita (or peach) or whatever the provider provides!  We always have a bottle or two of wine...and of course, have to finish the bottle since the cork never fits right back into the bottle after opening.  Some prefer tea - and that's my true story. 

We each have our personalized wine glass which also serves as the margarita glass and the martini glass.  Now, how is that for packing as a minimalist should pack. 


We sew too!  Here's the proof.  One among us wanted to learn how to make the "No Guts Boxie Pouch", a free pattern given to us on Craftsy.  So when one does, so does the masses.   

Ginger and Lilly worked on their Laura Heine....Abilene.  Here's Ginger's WIP:
She already has a personality.....and we know this is no bull.  Before Ginger finished for the day,  this bovine had the cutest nose and a lipstick hot pink tongue.

I came home and put the final border on my quilt top....a pattern I found in Simply Modern #4 by Sharon Holland.  Sharon calls her blue and green quilt Bloomescent.   I really, really like the Malka Dubrawsky hand crafted fabric in each flower petal. 
and the back....also using Malka's fabric and a little bit of ZenChic for the right-size-to-finish.
Here's another of my starts.  I did the 9 blocks made in the Denyse Schmidt  minimal style and hope to finish this one out in the next few days. 

So, it's home again, home again, jiggety-jig ~


A weekend filled with Beaches and Happy Villages ~

What a way to spend the day.....!  Karen Eckmeier dropped into town Thursday afternoon and spent the weekend with us quilt makers here in North Louisiana.  She is so fun and so talented, is a  Bernina Ambassador, national and international teacher and very modestly says her quilts have been well-received in Houston and other major quilt shows around the country.

Karen talks with her whole body....especially with her hands. 

Karen Eckmeier The Painted Lizard Art Studio

Her enthusiasm rubbed off on everyone in the Friday class.   Look at the (almost) completed art quilts.  All smiles at how much was accomplished in the full day workshop Accidental Landscapes:  Beaches.  Yep, the beaches stole the Friday show. 

Karen was there for everyone and gave each of us her undivided attention. Here she is talking shop with Marianne: 

And one of my favorites  from the Friday night presentation and trunk show where Karen has combined a couple of her construction techniques for this city scape:  rectangles and squares and curved layers and waves to get this accidental landscape.

Karen Eckmeier The Painted Lizard Art Studio

Saturday, a group of 25 met her early to begin another bountiful day putting on a happy face while making Happy Villages.   The construction of my village is not quite complete but certainly to the "I love it" stage! 


I was up at 4 a.m. to get Karen off to the airport for a 6 o'clock takeoff and since I was awake and feeling strong and energized, finished my landscape - a beach to enjoy sans heat and sand.

Accidental Landscape:  Beaches.  The quilted art of Marty Mason .   Layered curves, a workshop taught by Karen Eckmeier

Accidental Landscape:  Beaches.  The quilted art of Marty Mason .   Layered curves, a workshop taught by Karen Eckmeier

Accidental Landscape:  Beaches.  The quilted art of Marty Mason .   Layered curves, a workshop taught by Karen Eckmeier

Karen, we loved having you here.  Do come back.