Friday, April 30, 2010


Hey Everyone....

It is Round Robin Saturday! Hope everyone is ready to do some blog hopping! There are four of us starting our WOOL CRAZY pincushions today! You'll want to see all of our starts...and hopefully down the road the finished products..:)) Here are all the blogs! Go by and chat awhile!


Some of us picked themes :) Mine is FALL and the plan is to put the finished piece on the top of a paper mache box that I will cover. I've ordered the box and it is on it's I just have to figure out how to cover it! But, never fear, by the end of the r.r. I promise to find a way.

This photo shows you the layers of the pincushion. I start with a layer of warm and natural and then add a homespun (because it is easy to needle through) and then I start patching my wool. Use a lot of texture in your colors, but on something so small you have to be careful that one of the colors is not too over the top and takes over....I tried to use colors that would read FALL...

Next baste down your pieces so that you are not fighting pins and your layout stays where you want it. The basting on the outside shows the next person where to stop on the edges....I don't want to use any of their great stitching!

Next I added some stitching on one of the "joins" or seams. (Just to get it started) As you can see I am not a fanatic on perfection....Just enjoy the process and the overall finished product will look fine! I added a herringbone topped with a cretan and then put some french knots above them...
(I promise that this is the same piece...but somehow my great photo skills have changed the colors..:)

Then I cut out my wools and added an acorn and some leaves to get the FALL theme going...(I thought I'd tell you what they were in case you couldn't tell) You can use freezer paper patterns to iron on your wool before cutting...or do what I do and just wing it. I use teeny tiny applique pins to hold my pieces in place.

Finally, I whipped stitched my pieces in place and added some detail with my stitching. I used a backstitch for the veins of the leaves; the lines on the top of the acorn and the lines (branch??) holding it all together...french knot berries and x's to jazz up the acorn bottom a little. I love the stitching and sometimes I can get carried away...:)

So now it is ready to mail off to Roseann in Minnesota. Since I pretty much dream of FALL (although San Diego does get some fall leaves) she has more first hand experience so I know that she'll put on something great!

See how easy it is???? You'll want to start one of your own and get it going. If you need any designs just look in WOOL CRAZY (shameless plug) and you will find tons. Remember that any design can be shrunk down and used...:)) Send us photos of yours. We'd love to see them!

Hope you all "go crazy"! At least for Wool...and happy stitching!

Monday, April 26, 2010


DON'T FORGET TO TUNE IN TODAY!!!! Pat Sloan's Creative Talk Radio at 4pm Eastern time....1:00 for all of us Californians....Just go to http:/ .... (OK I just tried for ten minutes to make this link to Pat's show and I give up!!!!....You can now see why I like hand sewing! Machines and I do tend to fight! I had planned on photos today, but that isn't happening either..:()

I am excited and to be honest just a little scared. Pat is great and so easy to chat with...but it is LIVE and what if my little pea brain just goes blank....Like, DUH!!!!

WE will be announcing a fun new project, so don't miss out on hearing all about it. You can listen online later, if you miss the live show!

Thanks for dropping by...Jo Ann

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Two posts in one day!

On Friday night our oldest grandson, Pierce recieved his Arrow of Light...and became a Boy Scout!

It was a beautiful evening in San Diego after a week of rain and the ceremony was right on the bay. Six boys were being honored...but there were lots of friends and family there to cheer them on...

Here is Pierce with the Arrow of Light plaque his dad made for him!

...and Pierce and Aaron enjoying the moment...

..and all the boys lined up with their parents...That is our daughter-in-law Glenda (the one who can barely see over the boys..:) and son Andy (the tallest dad there) behind Pierce....

...and there was even an Indian chief who paddled in to conduct the ceremony!

It was a fun evening for everyone! Congratulations Pierce!!!!

Going crazy

Hey everyone....Hope you are having a wonderful Sunday. I looked at my last post this morning and couldn't Believe that it had been 2 weeks since I wrote...Life has been crazy!

I am so excited that tomorrow I will be on Pat Sloan's Creative Talk Radio show. I'll be chatting about Wool Crazy (I am sure you are all surprised)! You can follow along at ... It starts at 4 pm for those of you in San Diego that is 1:00....If you miss it then, you can listen to it on the computer later.

After the show leave a post on Pat's blog and you might win a copy of Wool Crazy!

Thought you might like to see what I have been working on. It is a new design using the Wool Crazy techniques. The pattern, Crazy Wool Sewing Keep will be coming out at Quilt Market in Minneapolis.

This is a photo of the inside...the little fold over with the bird on it opens for needles...and there is a place for pins and scissors....then all those containers on the other side are for all those goodies we can't do without!

This is a closer look at the needle and pin holders....

and this is the back....lots of crazy stitching here...

....and the front....even more stitching

We've had a lot of fun with this at the Loft and I think you'll like it too!

Quilt Market is only a little over 3 weeks away! My studio is getting a lot of use these days...there are things stacked everywhere! Last week we had a break-in here (fortunately not much missing....and just a little damage)...but the policeman who came to check out the house was sure that my studio had been ransacked. :))) Gene had to confess that it had looked just like that in the morning! What can I say...designing is not a neat activity!

Hope you get a chance to join us tomorrow...for click on links go to my last post.... Andy does a much better job at linking!!! I am determined to figure it out...but maybe not today.

Bye for now....Jo Ann

Saturday, April 10, 2010


Hey everyone...I have big news. The other day I got an e-mail from Pat Sloan asking me to be a guest on her radio show! I took a big gulp and wrote back "Yes". My first thought was "what if I get totally tongue tied and can't think of anything to say". Although I love to talk I wasn't sure that I wouldn't freeze.

Here is a link that you can just push...if I did it right..

If not, just click on this link and it should get you show .

So...I just realized that I haven't given you a time or a date. It will be on Monday, April 26 at 1:00 p.m. EST.... but if you can't listen then it will be available online for quite awhile after that...(I am thinking GREAT..if I blow it everyone can listen!)

Pat will be having a give away connected to her just go to her blog at Pat's Blog and make a comment to win...

I think you can guess what she wants me to talk about...WOOL Crazy of course.

So please be thinking positive thoughts at that time and send them in my direction...I hope you can join us...Jo Ann

Thursday, April 8, 2010

A break from crazy quilts

About a week and a half ago Gene and I headed up to Portland, Oregon. It is definitely one of my favorite cities on the west coast...and not just because my daughter and her family live there...It is just so GREEN and there are trees and flowers everywhere.....

The waterfall you see in this first photo is in the Japanese Garden...It is part of Washington Park....a great beauty spot right in the city. We had seen the outside of the garden, but never took the time to go in. It is so worth it....very quiet and serene....Although Megan wasn't too sure that taking a 5 and 2 year old into it added to the serenity...:)

This is just one of the lanterns dotted all over the garden. The person who sold us the tickets gave us a scavenger hunt for Nick (our 5 year old grandson) to do, but Gene is the one who got into it. This was one of his "finds".

Here are Nick and Sophie resting on a bench they found...They loved all the bridges and stepping stones they found throughout the garden...

..and here is Sophie with her Mom. We all had a great time visiting this gorgeous Portland spot. Even the rock gardens are beautiful...(and I am not really into rocks!)

We didn't spend all our time there. We also made a trek up a road we had never travelled...North along the Columbia....Here we are in front of a 1904 building in a town where the Willamette and Columbia Rivers meet...(Please don't ask me the mind is a total blank)... It was supposed to rain that afternoon, but we lucked out and had a great drive.

Thanks for travelling along with us for awhile....Jo Ann

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Jan's winter and fall

Last week I showed you some of Jan Gartland's work....I know from your notes and comments that you like it as much as I here is some more of it...Her winter and fall block. Her Santa is great and don't you like the deer peeking around his side....

The row of pumpkins on my Wool Crazy is one of my favorite appliques! As you can probably tell from the colors I use, fall is my season (even though California does not have the spectacular falls of other parts of the country, it does have it's share of changing leaves.... Jan picked a great place for hers and wonderful oranges to make them...

She has added the date and her name on the block above...and the hand holding the flower is perfect there!

Isn't this crow the best? It just has so much personality..... and do you see her snowflakes on the next piece...She used a wool yarn and felted them and then added stitches over that. (Remember anything goes)

Jan also needle felted this angel's hair...and don't you love her snowman and the cardinal in her pine tree....

Here is the whole block..I remember her adding the turkey right before Thanksgiving...Her village is perfect with the houses resting on their hill and the fence protecting it all.

I hope you enjoyed seeing more of her work. I took some photos last week of some more of the work from the Loft...I'll be posting them as the weeks go by.

My grandson Timothy is here and ready to dye some Easter eggs...I think that we are trying his patience, so I best be off.

I hope you all have a wonderful Easter and that the bunny brings you lots of goodies for your baskets......