Tuesday, July 21, 2015

While in Ohio I visited with a friend...

Do you enjoy a little COLOR in your life?? ME TOO! 
The picture is of a fabric collection of solids belonging to my friend Maria Elkins (http://mariaelkins.com/)
Aren't they scrumptious? Inspiring?
Or like me, would you be reluctant to actually use them because they look so good like this?
I'm inserting this info : Maria organized her fat quarters by color, and by value, lightest to darkest on 8th row down! It's amazingly useful when you know you need a particular shade.
Maria and I met through the online QuiltArt group when she asked the group if anyone in Annapolis wanted to meet up while she was in town to tour universities with her daughter. I said yes!
We had a great visit then, kept in touch via emails, even chose the same focus word (JOY) last year!
When I decided to go to Ohio with my husband on his business trip, I contacted her and went by for another great visit. Allow me to brag about my friend for a moment...
She is an internationally known quilter, and you may remember this

one of her many fabulous portrait quilts
She has written articles for magazines won numerous awards, and is comfortable to be with. We shared stories and laughs, ideas and goals.
She invited Cole in as well, and he took to her right away.

She shared with me her quilt storage system
wardrobes on their sides just the right size to hold rolled quilts...

open sesame
We looked at a few quilts, and the current series she is working on.
Now is a good time to mention that one is never too experienced to grow and learn. She studied with Nancy Crow, ( I admit I am too intimidated to do that at the moment) and has incorporated the lessons learned into her own style.
We should all approach a class like that, in my opinion. Learn a skill or technique but don't copy a teacher's style of work. Make it original! That's my life's motto, or one of them.
Maria has written an article for Studio magazine also, because she designed a thread caddy and shared the plans to make one in that magazine. She set up her studio for work.

Another important point here... set up your workspace according to how you work, not according to a designer's suggestion or how it looked in a magazine. Figure out what you need, and where you need it, by working in there, then set it up for your personal usage.

And a working studio is often messy. It. Just. Is. 
We visited for several wonderful hours that flew by. It's like that when two friends meet again, doesn't matter if you haven't seen them in a long time. Your spirits meet and conversation flows.

It wouldn't have happened this time if I hadn't let her know I was coming, or if she wasn't open to taking the time away from work, or if she was out of town teaching (which she does, check out her website)

But it did happen and I am all the richer for it!

Cole... well that poodle fell in love with Maria's husband. After he nearly licked Maria's hands off, he moved on to her husband. When it was time to tear ourselves away Cole clearly wasn't ready yet...
I treated him like a toddler,. and said "Okay Cole, momma's leaving now, come on!" and I walked to the car. I opened the doors. He remained where he was
Until he walked right back to the front door with a shrugging look back at me.
 "well, I liked them.
 I liked how they smelled, how they tasted and their energy was good. I was willing to stay longer.
 No one ever asks me if I'm ready to go yet. Sheesh! "
All good times eventually come to an end darlin' so you'll have to make-do with me and your dad/.


  1. Ohmygosh--what a gorgeous fabric collection! Looks like you had a wonderful visit...hugs, Julierose

  2. Ain't life grand when JOY be a plan!!! sonja

  3. Wonderful~thinking we quilters should open our own AIRBNB site. Good ol' Cole~he tells you how it should be :) Thanks for sharing!

  4. It's always great to see friends again. So glad Cole approved of them!

  5. I can't believe she can keep those solids organized. I wonder if she has a particular yardage to buy for each color? I know I started buying fat qtr, but then I bought 1/2 yards. Mine are a mess, but stored by color

    1. Caroline, Maria organized her fat quarters by shade, lightest on top and darkest 8 rows down!

    2. Hi. Maria here. Carolaj3, when you take a 5-day workshop from Nancy Crow she recommends 1-yard cuts. She has you cut strips salvage to salvage so fast quarters don't work. Because of this, a lot of my stash started out as 1-yard, but because I want lots of color choices, I also get half yard cuts.

  6. How wonderful you got to visit her!
    You know you've found good people when your dog doesn't want to leave... 8)

    1. Cole is a perfect gentleman.

  7. Hi LeeAnna!
    Great friends, great visitis, lots of chatting and sharing ideas!

  8. What a great day! I, too, am a big admirer of Maria and her fabulous work.

    1. And I'm a fan of yours, Norma!

  9. I love this fabric collection, I would like to sit there and to watch it while I would feel joy about being so well organized :o) the portrait quilt is an artpiece, BRAVO!!!
    easy rider

  10. What a great day - and how cool that you have built this friendship. As for the fabric collection...!!!

  11. Quilting friends, creative friends are such an encouragement and a treasure to be sure! Sew happy for you both!

  12. Ha! Poor Cole. I'm glad you (and he) had such a great time! I say that collection is inspiring. Part of my love of quilting is being able to see all the fabrics I have collected.

  13. So happy you got to meet up and visit with a quilting friend... So relaxing:-)
    I'm happy that Cole fit right in too!

  14. Whoa that's quite the solid collection of color! What is it about these standards where they will stay with others in near defiance of you asking them to go? Sam looks at me like I spoke to him in Swahili when he doesn't want to leave and suddenly becomes dead weight at the end of a leash. So glad you were able to visit with your friend. I always feel that friends = inspiration and your's clearly fits that bill. :)

    1. I know. I had to literally pull him to the car. How rejected I felt. And p=off. grrrr

  15. PepiSmartDog: Cole you did make me giggle when you decided to stay visiting a bit longer than everyone else! BOL!
    Thank you for joining out Thankful Thursday Blog Hop.
    Hope to see you again real soon.
    *waves paw* :=)