Monday, April 30, 2012

Flash Mob on opening Day at AQS show 2012

Flash mob in Paducah KY AQS 2012

What a great way to start the show. This was so much fun and we all danced around a little bit.


Today’s winner is …


rainjerette is the lucky winner today. She will receive a free copy of my pattern Petite Trilliums and a fat quarter of green fabric. Green is my favorite.

WoWo. Please email me your snail mail address so I can get this in the mail to you.

Thanks everyone.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Trilliums and a fat quarter yard of fabric



Don’t forget to leave your comments for a chance to win.

The give away this week is my Trilliums pattern along with a fat quarter yard of fabric.

I will announce the winner on Monday.

Happy Quilting.

Dinner is always better with friends

We all have to eat sometime and eating with friends seems so much more fun then eating alone.
Being at the quilt show is no different. It is what I love the most about coming to the AQS show in Paducah, my favorite quilt show.
Last night we had a real treat when several of us were invited to share a meal with our good friend and hostess Caryl Bryer Fallert.
Since Caryl moved to Paducah and opened her shop and home here, she has been having friends over for dinner one night during the quilt show. She actually started this tradition of having dinner with friends at the show long before she moved down here and just moved the party to her house once she moved in.
I hope you all get the chance someday, if you have not already, to come to this quilt show and while you are here be sure to visit Caryl at her shop. It is one of the highlights of the show. Next to winning an award of course.
Judy Levine and her sister Nancy from Minnesota
Laura Wasilowski and Wendy Butler Berns enjoying good conversation.
Our hostess Caryl and her friend and our divine chef Ron.
Barbara Hartman, John Anderson, Alex Anderson, Libby Lehman, Pat Holly and Sue Nichols ready to eat a good meal.
We had a fabulous dinner and lots of fun conversation.
When you see  Laura  be sure to ask her to sing the “On the Way to Old Kentucky” song we made up on the road trip down this year. She sang it for the crowd that was gathered together on this evening of frivolity.
Happy Quilting and Eating to all of us.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

OH Happy Day


I am happy to announce that my quilt “’Woodland Secrets” won an award last night at the AQS show in Paducah KY!!!


I am doing the happy dance all over Paducah. In the booth - Laura and I are here at the show vending in booth 1905 - down the aisles and all around town.  I wish you were all here to help me celebrate.!!

And just in case you are wondering; here are a few details about this quilt - it is made from my hand dyed fabrics, a cotton/silk blend for the border fabric, a cotton background fabric that was cut out using a wavy blade in my rotary cutter, and several different dyed silk charmeuse fabrics that were fused for the jack in the pulpits and the oak leaves. It has a pillow case finish and is (I think) 52” square.

The quilt was designed from one of my drawings that I have done over the years from “live” Jack in the Pulpits that I find growing in the little woods near my house. You know the woods where George and I walk.

If you are in Paducah for the quilt show be sure and stop by the booth and say hello. Fade to music  and dancing…..

Oh happy day
(Oh happy day)
Oh happy day
(Oh happy day)
When Frieda washed
Oh when she washed
When Frieda washed 
She washed the fabric out

Oh happy day
(Oh happy day)
Oh happy day
(Oh happy day) 
She taught me how to watch 
Quilt and fuse
Quilt and fuse
And live rejoicing
Ev'ry day
Ev'ry day
Oh happy day
(Oh happy day)
Oh happy day
(Oh happy day)
Oh happy day
(Oh happy day)
Oh happy day
(Oh happy day)

When Frieda washed
Oh when she washed
When Frieda washed 
She washed the fabric out

Oh happy day
(Oh happy day)
Oh happy day
(Oh happy day) 
she taught  me how to watch
Quilt and fuse
Quilt and fuse
And live rejoicing
Ev'ry day
Ev'ry day
Oh happy day
(Oh happy day)
Oh happy day
(Oh happy day)
Oh happy day
(Oh happy day)
Oh happy day
(Oh happy day)

Monday, April 23, 2012

Blowing in the Wind

I received these pictures and email from one of my students-Turid- in Norway.

It is always so nice to see where my little quilts end up living and to see projects that students do after class.

Thanks for sending them along Turid.

Hello Frieda,
I'm the one who bought your quilt "Blowing in the Wind" during your class in Oslo. Don't worry – it's been given a good home! I've hung it on the living room wall in our cabin outside Oslo. Please take a look at the enclosed picture of its location. I've also made three small quilts of the fabrics I bought from you. Two are inspired by photographs I took during the symposium weekend in Bergen,  Norway, the one with daisies I designed from imagination. Hope you like them!
Keep up the good work!
Kind regards,

Sister Trees class project mounted on a Peltex frame.


Random Numbers picked #18


Yvonne was the eighteenth commenter of the week and is the lucky winner of a my slightly used Tablet Keeper directions and a 1/2 yard of special dyed fabric.


This weeks winner will receive a free pattern of Petite Trilliums and a fat quarter of hand dyed fabric.

Start leaving your comments now and at the end of the week Random will pick the lucky winner.


Petite Trilliums pattern.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Remarkable Rambling Rose

I have spent many hours this week cleaning the gunk out of my garden.

There is a big oak tree in the neighbors yard that hangs over my garden and drops oak leaves throughout the fall and winter into my garden. So every spring there is a big clean up to clear the garden of this gunk.

20 years ago I planted this rose bush in the front of my garden allowing me a view it from my kitchen window. The idea was that I would enjoy the blossoms while I do the dishes. And this is true.

I know nothing about roses, and every spring I just hack away at it to trim back the overgrowth and dead parts and in the process cutting off the dead rosehips. And every year it comes back healthy and productive. Now that I think about it, I bet I could make rose hip tea if I cut those rosehips fresh in the fall… hum

This rose bush is a very ardent producer of fragrant and pink rosy blooms. They smell like sweat tea rose. I love to cut them and have them on the kitchen table, or sprinkle them in my bath water. Oh yes, I am a bather, I take a bath everyday, no showers for me.

My rose bush has buds and roses all summer long and if I let it, I’m sure it would ramble all over the garden.


Last week I finally got inspired to create a quilt in honor of this flower bush that gives me so much pleasure throughout the summer.


This is my newest pattern “Rambling Rose” 16” x 20”. It uses two different decorative blades to give it a little drama and whimsy.

The pinking blade and the wavy blade are both used in my rotary cutter to cut the leaves and vines and shadow of the rose.

It would look pretty hanging on your wall too.

Don't forget to leave your comments for a chance to win the tablet keeper directions and fabric. I will announce the winner Monday. See you then.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Steam setting is good for the pores

After I have finished designing my fused quilt tops and before I layer them with batting and backing fabric to make them into a quilt sandwich, I make sure I steam set the fused quilt surface.

This sets the fusible web. Nothing will peal up after I steam set the top.

Watch along -

Steam set fused quilt top

Don't forget to leave your comments for a chance to win the tablet keeper directions and fabric. I will announce the winner Monday.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Free Friday Give Away

Remember this?

Are you ready to make one yourself?

I think it is time to share.

This week and next I will be giving away parts to make this Tablet Keeper for yourself.

This was a fun project to do, and most importantly have. I love using my tablet keeper.

This Friday enter your name for a chance to win the “Gently Used” directions to make this Tablet Keeper or IPAD cover. Along with the directions you will also receive a fat quarter yard of Frieda’s gorgeous hand dyed green fabric. That way you may actually get around to making one of these nifty covers for yourself.

Next Friday enter your name for a chance to win my pattern, Petite Trilliums and a quarter yard of Frieda’s hand dyed fabric - fuchsia to purple. When you get these it is up to you come up with another interesting idea of how to put my design on something, maybe a purse?

All you have to do for a chance to win this week is to send a friend to my blog and ask them to sign up to follow along. Each of you need to leave a comment. All names will be enter in the drawing. Each time you comment I will add your name again.

It’s as simple as that and soon you could be making something new.

Good luck!!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Walks in the Woods

Georgie and I go for a walk everyday, rain or shine, unless I am traveling.

Some of the benefits I get  as an artist from my daily walks are -

1. It makes me stop and think. Regular stops are useful interruptions to creativity.

2. Inspiration ALWAYS arises when we are out. Refueling my creative body and mind.

3. Time is given to aim my efforts more accurately. I can focus on what I need and more importantly - WANT to do.

4. A brief pause helps me make a smarter next step.

5. It is physically good for both of us.

6. I am infused with spirituality every time I walk in the woods or around the pond.

Things that have become clear to me on these walks are -

1. It is O.K. to start over, and sometimes better.
2. It is O.K. to start without an end in sight.
3. It is O.K. to just start.
4. It is O.K.

I hope you all have a great weekend and get outside for a walk.


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Where is it?

Staying organized is definitely one of my biggest challenges.

Having lots of draws and shelves helps me with that challenge.

I wish I had even more table and shelf space, but the ones that I do have let me be creative instead of looking for my tools.

I know where all the things I need to work with are and I can easily have what I need right at my fingertips.

Being organized is one of the key elements to letting my right brain take over and create!
Where is it?

Monday, April 9, 2012

Righty or Lefty?

Research has shown that the right side of the brain is where the creative soul resides. The nonverbal, spatial, visual all live in the right side of the brain.

Prairie Grass Triptych

I hang out on the right side of my brain all the time.  The left side deals with language, logic and math skills. I like to joke that I can barely speak one language. Verbal skills are not my strong suit. And now I know why, because I am a right sided brain person.

I hear this all the time from people, “I am not creative”, and I try to tell them - "but creativity can be taught just like anything else."

You have to remember that the left side, logic, verbal-linquistic communication and math skills, have been what was stressed in school.

The right side is intuitive and relaxed. How can you teach that?

Intuitive and hopefully relaxation is what I think you need to be more creative. So how can you make yourself work from the right side of the brain more?

Here are some suggests to help your right brain be more in charge.
  • Have a work area free of distractions.
  • Get that space organized.
  • Have a space that is just for your work.

You don’t have to be super mom organized, just know where all your tools are and how you can function well in your space so you don’t have to think about where everything is. You should be able to lay your hands on the tool you need easily.

Don’t waste your time searching for stuff or figuring out how or where you can do the tasks you need to do to be creative. Organize your space so you can go there and work well.
  • Turn off the wrong noise.
Studies have shown that certain types of music are more conducive to right brain activity.

Classical music or wordless music lets your brain focus more on the right side where visualization and spatial planning is used.

The words (lyrics) in music are heard often unintended by your left brain, therefore keeping you out of the right side of the brain because it engages your left side to process the language. This is one of the reasons I never have the TV on or listen to popular (lyric based) music when I am creating, making something new.

I read somewhere that if you can’t be creative listening to Johann Sebastian Bach then you aren’t trying.
This made me immediately go to the library and take out all recordings done of his music and I often listening to it, or classical music when I am working in my studio.


That scares a lot of people, but I find it allows me to engage that right side of my brain and focus on what it is I am doing.

I love the long drives I take teaching, because it gives me time to think about projects. I keep a notebook and camera handy to take notes and pictures, yes even while I am driving, so that when inspiration strikes, and it always does, I can make notes and pictures of it.

I don’t answer my phone when I am working, isn’t that why we got voice mail?

My time is precious when I am working, and I return phone calls after I quit being creative.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Have you DYED yet?

Rather than Easter Eggs, let's Dye Fabric.

This is a fun class to take. It is based on my book Fabric to Dye For.

So many people, I think would like to take a dyeing class but are afraid it will be messy.

Let me show you how messy it isn't. These clips from two of the dye classes I taught this year give you a glimpse into the real action, and you can see it isn’t messy at all. You do need to have access to water.

Maybe your guild wants to learn how to DYE?
DYEING with Frieda–Hand dye fabric class

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Happy or Sad?

I can’t decide if I am happy or sad.

These two little quilts found new homes while I was in Norway.
Brown Sister Tress mounted on peltex $150 sold Norway 3/2012 Marit Jversen
Brown Sister Tress mounted on Peltex Frame.

Blowing in the wind 14" x 15" $150 sold Norway to Turid Lismoen 3/2012
Blowing in the Wind mounted on Peltex Frame.

I am doing the happy dance. George thinks I am silly when I do this.

But I am sad that they no longer live with me.

BUT, I know that the quilts are happy to be hanging up in someone’s studio and being loved by someone new, rather than hiding from the light in my suitcase.

Life sure is a mixed blessing of joy and sorrow.

Monday, April 2, 2012

What thread do you own?

Last month I talked a lot about thread. I ran a series of interviews with some of my friends on the threads that they like to use and why.
  • What thread do you use?
  • And why are you using it?
  • Are you happy with the results?
I've talked alot about the choices of thread that I like and why I like them.

I like Madeira #30 weight rayon for a bold and bright look.
I like Aurifil in the bottom almost all the time.
I like YLI or Superior Silk for quilting that will be subtle and soft.
AND I like Variegated cotton, Coats and Clark or Superior for a muted cotton look.

As I teach machine quilting around the country I look at my work over and over again,
and it makes me think about what stitches I want to make and how the thread made the design better.

As I talk to the students and go around the room demonstrating the stitches for them, I also show them samples of my work and talk about why I use each thread.

Do you think about your thread choices before you use them in your quilts? Or do you just grab a color and hope it is what you want.

I ALWAYS do a test run first whenever I start a new project. I put together a sandwich of the same fabrics and battings that I will be using and then sample out the thread that I will put on it along with the design I will use. This does two things.
  1. First it makes sure that I like the thread color that I have picked on the fabric that I am putting it on.
  2. It makes sure that my tension is good and where it needs to be.
    1. Don’t be afraid of adjusting your tension. The manufactures put a tension knob on the machines so you could do just that!
I recently did a sample of threads, shown here of different types and weights of thread that I use and then washed it over 50 times. I wanted to see how each thread type would hold up to so much washing and handling.
Guess what - they all held up great.

I suggest that you try new threads and test them out. You have to experiment in order to feel good about what you are doing.

Experimenting is part of the process of creating, it just doesn’t work out 100% great the first time you do something, you have to keep working at it and trying new approaches.

I just saw this on Superior's site and I think it is a great idea to get one of these.

Superior SamplerSampler Sets   If you are not familiar with many of our products, we offer a variety of Sampler Sets at discounts of approx. 40% off
Home Quilting Sampler Set 
Longarm Quilting Sampler Set 
Embroidery Sampler Set 
Embellishment Sampler Set (for bobbin work/serger/couching) 
Silk Sampler set

I hope you are enjoying what you are making and the materials you are using to make your creations.

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