Sunday, May 21, 2017

Fiber Arts Fiesta 2017

I was thrilled to be able to make it to the fiesta twice this year!  My 2nd visit was with my girl Claire, who, at age 17 now, is a wonderful companion on outings and sweetly patient as I introduced her to the many customers and friends we came across as we marveled at the exhibits.  I'm sure it was not her most exiting outing to hear over and over, "this is so-and-so, who's a rughooker/knitter/quilter/photographer/" and have to hear how so-and-so and I know each other, but she's a trooper and joy to me.
I gave her my cell phone and instructed her to take pictures of quilts that SHE likes.  I wanted this documentation to be about what her eye was drawn to.  Some quilts we both loved, some she loved and I was so-so about, and vice-versa.
She learned that she is drawn to ombre/spectrum of colors.  We both loved those that spoke of social justice.  And we both agreed that we need more hours in the day to do some creating of our own.
She'll be a part-timer at Hip Stitch this summer, as well her sister Jane.  I couldn't be happier.
Here's what she took:

 Katherine is a Hip Stitch customer, and I ran into her after seeing this quilt - she talked about her nervousness about having her quilt at FAF with all the other magnificent quilts.  To me, THIS was magnificent:

Rod Daniel's quilt, Pulse, made after the Orlando nightclub shootings:

Renee Hoffman's winning quilt, which Hip Stitch was proud to be the sponsor of this award:

(and for those of you who wonder which girl is which, here's Claire with her friend Will:)

We'll see you soon at Hip Stitch!

Monday, May 1, 2017


A trip to Baltimore in late April brought me to a reunion with best childhood friends, visiting my hometown, and quilt shops!  I love to see what the local flair is in fabric, and Bear's Paw Fabrics in Towson, MD, had these goodies that I couldn't resist:

Bought the kit to make a crab table runner.....have childhood memories of the Chesapeake Bay, going the beach, eating crab cakes!

Judy, the owner of this gem of a store, was wonderful.  We talked shop, compared notes, and she was so very sweet to take time from her busy Saturday to meet with me!  The staff were equally kind and helpful - I had brought in my friends with me, who oohed and aahhed over the fabrics and projects.  They are not sewists, but picked out fabric for me to make them pajama bottoms!
 ('cause friends do that for friends!)

(look at the gorgeous Elizabeth Hartman quilt behind us!)

I rented a car my last day there and drove up to Amish country, Pennsylvania.  Went to The Old Country Store, where I, well, shopped some more!  A great gift/fabric/kitchen store.  Was neat to see a mix of traditional and modern fabrics.

Back to New Mexico, back to Hip Stitch and our beautiful new location!

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Egad - one year!

Yes, it's been a year since I've posted in the blog.  It's been nagging me for awhile, and it's time to revive things around here.  This post has been on my mind for a few months:

Last January, my mom was diagnosed with ovarian cancer.  She had had a TIA (small stroke) in May of 2015, and had just been slowing down since.  The diagnosis was a whammy, though.  At age 83, she - and I - quickly realized that chemo wasn't a wise option to have with whatever time she had left to be a good quality of life.

I began to stay the night at her apartment with her - at 1st maybe once every 2 weeks, then weekly, then by the last 2 months, nightly.  She lived just 4 miles away from my home, so it was an easy drive.  However, remembering what I had at home and what I had at her house became a challenge.  My phone charger?  The book I was reading?  What shoes were here or there?

These things were all relatively unimportant in the broader picture, but my favorite accessory was this train case, which was my grandmothers:

However, it was quickly deteriorating.  The zipper was coming apart, and by the end of its life, I was holding it not by the handle, but by the bottom as I lugged my tote bag full of clothes, laptop computer and purse as well from the parking lot, up the elevator, to my mom's little apartment.  Sewing had gone into hiatus for me, and then I found this pattern:

this PDF pattern by Sara Lawson.
And my sewing groove was back.  I got my mom's sewing machine out, and cut, and ironed, and sewed in the evenings while she slept.  And I made this:

I LOVE LOVE LOVE this pattern.  And forevermore, it will remind me of my sweet mom, and our last weeks together.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

State Fair Time!

Another year....another State Fair.  Where all of humanity gathers in one place - to eat, to ride the rides, to see the art, to pet the farm animals, to buy a salsa maker, to register to vote, to watch the sheep shearing and cow milking and dancing dogs.....ah, the joy.

Here was our family day at the fair - minus one daughter.  Lots and lots of quilts with ribbons, made by our ABQMQG members, and young Hip Stitchers!  Congratulations McKenna, Laurel, Sara, Renee, Debbie, Vicky, Afton, Sally!

Square dancing, with music provided by a 45 record - that's right, a RECORD!

Get on out to the State Fair, y'all!

Monday, July 20, 2015

Lisa Pries-Linn, who works at Hip Stitch on the weekends, just returned from the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show in Oregon.  It was her fifth consecutive trip to one of the world’s largest quilt events.  Lisa’s sharing her favorite moments with us.

Lisa and husband John
Hi, fellow Hip Stitchers, Lisa here with a few of my favorite things about the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show.

I took an all-day class with the wonderful Jacquie Gering.  In my humble opinion, Jacquie is the queen of modern quilting.  In this class, Jacquie focused on “scrappy improvisation.”  According to Jacquie, if you add background fabric to the edges of a scrappy block, it will be very hard to see where one block begins and another one ends. This is one of the hallmarks of modern quilting.  This is a picture of my class project, which I plan to finish within the next few weeks.

After seeing the "Best of QuiltCon" exhibit at Albuquerque Fiber Arts Fiesta in May, I saw it again in Sisters.  This time, the award-winning quilts were hanging from trees, porches of homes, and the exterior walls of businesses that line the main drag through town (population 2,000).  It was a thrill to tell the visitors at Sisters that the exhibit made its debut in Albuquerque and that I helped install the Albuquerque show.

Tula Pink, fabric designer extraordinaire, gave a terrific lecture.  She’s so young!!!  When she designs a fabric line, Tula said she creates fabrics that feature recognizable images, like a 16th century Queen Elizabeth, along with fabrics that are strictly geometric in pattern.  Tula said combining the fabrics adds so much interest whether you’re making a quilt, bags or garments.  Tula gave us a sneak peek of her Eden line.

After Tula’s lecture, I joined the team to hang Tula’s quilts around Sisters.

I’ve been going to the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show for five years and the presence of modern quilting has been growing steadily.  At the July 2015 show, I believe the mix of modern to traditional was 50/50.  I wonder if modern will eclipse traditional in 2016?

When you’re in Sisters, it pays to strike up a conversation with someone admiring the same quilt you’re ogling.  That’s how I met Julie Herman of Jaybird Quilts.  Julie said she puts two layers of batting in her quilts because it gives the actual quilting a stronger visual presence.  Talk about a hot idea -- I think I’m going to try that.

Thanks, Lisa!  

At an upcoming meeting of the Albuquerque Modern Quilt Guild, Lisa will be going into more details, along with a picture slide show. If you're a member of the ABQMQG, we'll see you then! If you're interested in attending your first meeting for free to check it out, email or call Hip Stitch for more details!