Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Year's Eve ~ Ring in 2007!

I decided to leave a little bit of holiday glitter out to ring in the new year . . . the bird is from my pattern No 136 Sweet Redbird and the glass glitter star ornament is some Wendy Addison bling! Have a safe and happy New Year's Eve.
xoxx, Renée

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Workshops at The Country Loft
February 23 & 24, 2007

Stars & Stripes on Friday evening
This little quilt was in the 2006 American Patchwork & Quilting Calendar for July

Patriotic Beulah on Saturday

I am really looking forward to seeing some of my darling friends that have joined me before for workshops at the Country Loft. It is a treat to visit with all the wonderful ladies that make this shop so special and definitely at the top of my very favorite shops list. Make sure to plan a visit to the Country Loft whenever you are in the San Diego area.
xoxx, Renée

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Almost everything back in place . . . .

Christmas is over and most of the decorations are neatly packed away in their red & green storage bins. I spent all day yesterday taking down, sorting and packing my Christmas treasures. Some of the bins are neatly stacked right next to the garage door so each time I leave or come home I get a glimpse of Christmas treasures. I did find time for a quick trip to Frances to get a few decorations at 50% off including this SOOOO CUTE Cody Foster house.

Here are my new kitchen chairs - they were unfinished school house chairs. First I painted them dark brown. Next I painted over the brown with a mustard color and the last step was to sand them for a distressed look. My friend put numbers on hers, 1 - 6, they looked way cool so I decided to stencil our birth dates that way there would be lots of numbers on each chair. I was a little apprehensive to stencil the numbers but it was so easy - I was pleasantly surprised.

Now it is back to work . . . my Quilt Pink top is almost all cut and ready to sew together. Next the Cotton and Chocolate Quilt Shop projects - Sally if you are reading this I promise to call you this week.

I will also be teaching at the Country Loft in La Mesa, CA February 23 & 24. A little pieced and appliquéd quilt on Friday evening and on Saturday a doll, Martha celebrates Flag Day - I will post photos of them here in the next few days. I hope some of you can join me.

xoxx, Renée

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Cookie Exchange . . .

mmmm delicious . . . I made peppermint chocolate wafers and gooey butter cookies for Sandee's cookie exchange today. This was my third year to attend and it was really fun. There were so many different kinds of cookies. Not as many ladies as last year which made it easier to maneuver as we filled our trays with goodies. Bob and my sons will certainly enjoy them. I am going to try to resist . . . so far not very well!

Finally I have stopped decorating . . . and will start wrapping the gifts. Maybe I will try to make that sort of a decorating thing. Usually it is the eleventh hour once I determine that each one has an equal number of gifts and too much has been spent. hmmm . . . I think I'm there!

I hope you are enjoying Christmas . . . only one more day and then it will be here. So much anticipation . . . so much fun . . . so many decorations. Merry Christmas!
xoxx, Renée

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Twelve Drummers druming . . .

the last day of of my twelve days of Christmas decorating - YAY finally I was able to upload a photo . . . not sure what the problem was but here is an adorable Cody Foster snowman - isn't he cute? This "Bethany Lowe" Santa is new this year and he already had a bottle brush tree - very nice since I have been so complusive about the trees. He fits right in! Yahoo I made it - 12 Days of blogging all in a row - a record for me.

xoxx, Renée

Monday, December 18, 2006

Eleven Pipers piping . . .
This cloche has a paper maché house that I painted and then added glitter glass. A little wreath would be nice above the door . . . I will have to find one and add that. Usually I am not too much of a glitter girl but I quite like all the glitter on vintage Christmas decorations. I now have five jars of glitter glass for anything that looks like it might need a little sparkle. The snowman and trees are reproductions and the sheep is vintage.

This little red and green quilt was in the American Patchwork & Quilting Calendar for December 2005 and this was the perfect spot for it. Hailey is wondering why I am taking so many photos lately. She would rather that I just sat down and played with her.
xoxx, Renée

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Ten Lords a leaping! or day TEN . . . wow this is a blogging record for me.

These are two little vintage houses - I LOVE the sponge tree with the red one. How cute is that? I wonder if it is some sort of floral sponge.

I got this terrarium yesterday on sale (making it irresistible) at Smith & Hawken - the house (an ornament with a music box) is from Target this year, the snowman is a Backporch Friends ornament & the trees are reproduction ones. I think this might be the last terrarium this year though I find them quite addictive because they are soooooooooo adorable.

We are going to see the new Will Smith movie, "The Pursuit of Happyness" this afternoon - great reviews . . . hope it isn't too crowded.
xoxx, Renée

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Nine Ladies Dancing . . .
We had our Circle of Friends Christmas party on Thursday night - what a wonderful time! I am sooooo lucky to enjoy the company of these darling ladies. Everyone in the group either taught or worked at the Quilted Apple in Phoenix when Laurene Sinema owned it. Actually there are a few that just plain begged their way in to the group. We play a Christmas gift exchange game picking or stealing a wrapped gift - way lots of fun. After the last gift is picked then we open them one at a time. So many fabulous gifts! I was so lucky and delighted to get this little Noel quilt from Tonee White - she had made it from my pattern and was a bit worried when I kept trading to get it. It was wrapped in Honey & Me Candy Cane fabric (darling!) with an adorable mitten and a stitchery pattern tied on. SOOOOOO CUTE! I kept saying it was "sooo me!" Anyway I loved getting it - mine is always traveling for trunk shows so I am flattered Tonee made it and very happy to have it! Thank you Mz Tonee!

I bought this little chest of drawers today for a nightstand . . . not sure what I will put in the drawers but it will be nice to have some more storage space. Yay never too much storage and it will be very accessible! xoxx, Renée

Friday, December 15, 2006

The Eighth Day of Christmas . . .

This is my first amaryllis plant - my sweet friend Janice brought it to me. Thank you Janice! It must be a very hardy plant since it managed to bloom even without a green thumb. It's beautiful don't you think?

This is my guest bedroom . . . I think it needs an antique quilt on the wall. Maybe a really nice red and white quilt. xoxx, Renée

Thursday, December 14, 2006

On The Seventh Day of Christmas Decorations . . .

This two tiered plate thing is another fun new decoration this year . . . the snow really made it and I love the way the oversized reindeer make it very folksy. It is one of my favorites.

Here are some more favorites as in my three sons, Jake, Travis & Brett . . . posing for a Christmas photo op. They couldn't keep from laughing when I pointed out some portrait tips:
tilt your head slightly, hold your head up high, lift your chin up and out
. . . Axel & Hailey thought it was a game of sorts too - all of this didn't equal a perfect Christmas photo but it did provide some Sunday Family Dinner fun.
xoxx, Renée

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Day SIX for Christmas Vignettes . . . .
This is the Santa Terrarium - I had Bob cut the little ball feet off this one (it came from Target a few years ago) - I like it soooo much better now that it sits flat on the tray.

The Christmas Tree looks better at night when the white wire isn't as apparent. In my opinion it certainly isn't worth taking off all the Shiny Brite ornaments to change the lights. Especially since they don't seem to show as much in person as they do in this photo.

This faux feather tree (from The Apple Tree) has one of the upside down metal funnels to cover the base. I love the way it looks and if I ever decide to do some canning there are four funnels to use. I would even know where to find them in one of the Christmas decorations boxes. Until tomorrow . . . xoxx, Renée

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Five Golden Rings
or the 5th day for my Christmas Vignettes. The icicle lights on the Christmas Tree worked out very well except that the wire is white . . . it would be much better if it was green. So be on the look out for green wire icicle lights - very hard to come by here. There will be a photo of the tree in tomorrow's post.

The base of this silver tree is an upside down milk strainer that I cut the wire mesh out of. I have several upside down metal funnels used to cover tree bases too - find them at flea markets or antique malls. I will take some pictures of them tomorrow to show how cute they are.

This is one of three little glass cases - this is the snowman case in the kitchen . . . they are so much fun to make. If you have an old terrarium, some little bottle brush trees and a little house try it!

HO HO HO . . . see you tomorrow!
xoxx, Renée

Monday, December 11, 2006

The Glitter Vignette!
This is sort of my glittery shabby chic area. I bought the Wendy Addison glitter numbers and star at Melrose Vintage (a fabulous shop) in Phoenix. The wreath garland came from the same shop. Are you thinking how many Christmas decorations does a girl need? I am wondering the same thing! Seems like you just can't have too many bottle brush tress, cardboard houses or angels - at least that's my story and I am sticking to it!

This is a better view of the Colonial Bread rack decorations. On my daily trip to Target I snagged the last box of icicle lights and now it is time to start decorating the tree . . . I am going to try the icicle lights on the tree and will let you know how that works out.
xoxx, Renée

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Three French Hens
My son, Jake, went with me today to pick out our tree . . . it is in the urn and ready to decorate - maybe tomorrow. Bob (my husband) was soooooo happy to have the tree here without having to go to a crowded store or tree lot. Way to go Jake! This year I am going to try using icicle lights on the tree (my friend Cindy's great idea) so that will be yet another trip to Target. It seems to be a requirement to make no less than 10 trips to Target for Christmas supplies.

The white sideboard is in the dining room and the stockings are hung on the living room fireplace. How is your decorating coming along?

I plan to cut out my "Quilt Pink" auction quilt this week so it can be pieced and ready to be quilted next week. Sounds a little optimistic during the holidays!

I decided to call these Christmas posts "The Twelve Days of Christmas" making this day 3 or Three French Hens - so come back for a visit tomorrow - Four Calling Birds.
xoxx, Renée

Saturday, December 09, 2006

This shade of green (Martha's green) is my new favorite color - especially for Christmas. mmmm extra delicious with red! I will post a close up photo of the "Colonial Bread" rack with all the decorations in the next few days but this one shows little Axel in the kitchen . . . and he is just too cute not to be in the picture. I hope you are enjoying decorating for Christmas as much as I am! Maybe I better start shopping so when the tree arrives there will be something to put under it.
xoxx, Renée

Friday, December 08, 2006


Merry Christmas
Isn't it fun to see how everyone decorates for the holidays? I will post a few photos each day of little Christmas vignettes . . . This year I decided to take photos so it will be easier to decorate next year. It would probably have been a good idea to take photos before all the fun holiday stuff was set up so I could remember where it all goes when it is time to put Christmas away until next year.

xoxx, Renée

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Finally here are the other three new pattern covers . . . it is always surprising to me how fast time goes after Fall Quilt Market. OMG can you believe it next week will be Thanksgiving and then Christmas will be here before we know it. I meant to take pictures of all my fun new Halloween decorations to post but never got around to it. No Thanksgiving decorations except for a few pumpkins so I will take lots of photos of all the Christmas things to post . . . and there are lots of those.

xoxx, Renée

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Houston Quilt Market 2006

Open and ready to visit with quilting friends. Shop owners and exhibitors are excited to see what's new! At the end of a really fun first day we went to the MODA party at the Hilton - the line for the food was 552 people long and surprisingly the open bar didn't have a single person waiting. Quilters - FOOD - ALCOHOL - ???? We decided on the open bar - a little wine with a water bottle chaser and we were off for Goode Company Barbecue (mmmmmm delicious) always a highlight while here. Don't miss it if you are visiting Houston.

Nighty Night - the time changes here tonight so we get an extra hour of sleep (yeah!) before we go back for another day of FALL QUILT MARKET!
xoxx, Renée

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Hiking at Pinnacle Peak
Finally I remembered to take along a camera for my hike. The views along the trail are beautiful - enjoy the Sonoran Desert through this photo album. Join me for a Hike at Pinnacle Peak Park

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Foldover Bag
This is the pattern cover for my new handbag. I decided to make up a new word to use for the title - FOLDOVER - seemed to describe it perfectly! Fold Over didn't look very good on the cover - maybe I should submit it to Webster. This long quiet spell (no blog posts) is due to writing the directions/insides for all four new patterns . . . usually I refer to this as working on "the dreaded insides" - perhaps that is because it always seems to be at last minute before quilt market. DEADLINES! who needs them? It is so easy to get distracted with other fun things - sewing, painting, creating collages, shopping - bet you can think of lots of things too! It's late here 11:30 pm but back to writing - ICK!
xoxx, Renée

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Petals & Feathers No 153 - one of the new patterns for little wall appliqués - it would be quite a stretch to call them quilts! LOL so for the lack of anything better I think "wall appliqués" is a good description. Two are 8" x 10" and the flower pot is 9" x 11". They were sooooo much fun to stitch - I love handwork - stitching little projects like this. Easy to take a long or to work on in front of the TV. I will do a little quilting on them then finish with binding. They would also be nice in frames or could be used for a journal cover. I hope you like them too. They were made with the new Chocolat fabrics from Moda.

Several people have emailed me asking about the "quick wash" I noted in my last post for the Pinwheel quilt (now named Pieced Pinwheels No 151) - so here is a little more on that.

I haven't prewashed my quilt fabrics for years since I always use quilt shop high quality fabrics. My favorite batting is Mountain Mist Blue Ribbon Cotton Batting - a perfect thin batting for my small quilts. I wash my little quilts in the washing machine (warm water/cool rinse/shortest gentle cycle) when they are finished - quilted with binding. I dry them with air only for a few minutes and lay them flat on the carpet in a spare bedroom to finish drying. If there is any concern about a fabric bleeding I test that fabric in a cup of hot water to see if any dye shows up in the water. The fabrics I used for Pieced Pinwheels are from Baum Textiles Farmhouse Blues.

xoxx, Renée

Monday, September 25, 2006

Ta Da! The new pinwheel quilt is done! Binding stitched and now it is ready for a quick wash to shrink the batting and make it look old. Any ideas for a pattern name? Pinwheel just doesn't do it for me but that is all I have right now.

As soon as I find some time I am going to list some pattern and workshop models on ebay. After rearranging the studio and shipping room I need to make room for other things. It occurred to me that some of you reading my blog might be interested in them so I will post a link to the listing. Back to stitching!
xoxx, Renée

Saturday, September 23, 2006

New Quilts . . . ready for sewing on the binding. This is just a teaser since they are folded up to hide the raw edges. I used this photo for my new ad in American Quilt Retailer the very best trade magazine for quilt shops. Thank you Susan!

xoxx, Renée

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

The New Handbag . . . still working on it to tweak it a bit and then I will make two in the pattern cover fabrics - one for the front view and one for the back view. This bag has been torn apart so many times already but I love these old fabrics so I will keep this one to carry!

Tomorrow I will take photos of the two quilts I picked up today from Sandy - she did a fabulous job on the quilting as usual - she really is the BEST! I feel very fortunate to have her quilt for me especially because she fits my quilts into her busy schedule. Thank you Sandy!
xoxx, Renée

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Pinnacle Peak Park
This is the beginning of the trail I hike - it is finally getting cool enough to hike again . . . at least if you go really early. The trail is 1 3/4 miles long and then you come back on the same path making it a 3 1/2 mile hike - plenty of exercise for me! Next time I will try to remember to take my camera on the hike and post some photos of how beautiful the views are. Back to stitching!

Monday, September 11, 2006

Friday, September 08, 2006

YAY! This one is ready to be quilted and here is a peak at "Pinwheels" too. I knew that red and black numbered tape would come in handy - you can see the little red pieces of tape on the blocks and the black tape is on the cornerstones to mark placement. See it pays to be a collector of many things. The blocks are pinned together with the pinwheel cornerstones . . . the sashing/connecting fabric may be here today. The plan is to finish this top today or tomorrow!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Finally enough done to take a photo - this is one of the new quilts ready to add the border. It is amazing what a pieced border does for little quilts. In fact I love pieced borders on most quilts. This one may be called "Batter Bowl" unless I can think of a better name - any ideas? Hopefully by tomorrow this one will be ready for my very wonderful long arm quilter, Sandy. Another one should be ready soon to sew together then take a photo to post. Back to stitching!
xoxx, Renée

Monday, September 04, 2006

This darling feather tree is from my friends, Laura and Rita at
  • Log Cabin Patchworks
  • I LOVE IT! Thank you Laura and Rita! Their shop is in Hiawassee, Georgia - I haven't been there but if I ever get to Georgia it will be at the top of my list for places to visit. Even if you are not a quilter I bet they have lots of really neat stuff to see. They are darling ladies!
    xoxx, Renée

    Friday, September 01, 2006

    Here are a few old sewing treasures - I love to hunt for them at flea markets and antique shops. How about you? It is fun to think about the ladies that bought them originally and imagine what their lives were like. We are so lucky to have all the sewing tools that are made today. What would we do without our rotary cutters and mats? It sure makes sewing quilts a whole lot easier - don't you think? When I have trouble picking from the many beautiful fabrics available today I remember that some of the vintage quilt charm is the "make do" use of fabrics. I hope to post a photo of at least one of the new quilts I am working on tomorrow.
    xoxx, Renée

    Tuesday, August 29, 2006

    Run - Illustration Friday

    This is my submission for this week. I had a hard time thinking of something to go with the word "run" then I remembered one of my favorite sayings "runs with scissors" and thought of a naughty girl with a dunce hat since she is unable to follow the rules!

    xoxx, Renée

    The Shipping Room

    This is the shipping room . . . I love the way it is set up now. Shelves with all the pattern pieces and a TV are in front of the table - you can't see them in this photo. Now patterns can be stuffed while watching TV - makes a very boring job so MUCH better! Check it out - this table has wheels too! We may have wheels on everything pretty soon seems like a great idea to me!

    xoxx, Renée