Welcome to tierneycreates!


Thank you for visiting and I look forward to your comments and thoughts on my posts.

My blog is focuses on the aspects of “A Crafter’s Life” and discusses topics such as sources of creative inspiration, what’s on my design wall, quality of life, quilting adventures, artistic growth, books that inspire me and all things related to handmade textile crafts!

The My Story section contains the The “Tierney” page sharing my story; and a tour of my studio in the tierneycreates Studio Tour page. The Textile Adventures section  has links to my Exhibits and Shows, Art for Sale, and Gallery of my work.

If you have questions or want to contact me, please use the form on the Questions page, thanks!

I also manage the blog for Improvisational Textiles a collaborative collection of art quilts.

Fusing Textiles & Smiles,



Trends Show Part I: The Unexpected Roommate

They Invited Me So I Went

Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) and I attended EE Schenck’s Trends show this past weekend. This post is part one of my two-part series on my experience at the Spring 2018 Trends show.

I signed up for an EE Schenck wholesale account when I had the tierneycreates Etsy shop and for a brief time thought I would supplement my handmade items sales with some fabric sales.

My ‘adventures in retail” were challenging (see my old post from June 2015,  Adventures in Retail) and I quickly discovered that I greatly disliked cutting yardage and making up fat quarter packs (I believe this is what you have to do all day  in the “Underworld”, if you are bad in life and go there after you die; to me that is a big enough incentive to be good in life!).

I did however meet my lovely quilting friend Martha through one of my Etsy shop fabric sales so I figured that was the good thing that came out of that experience!

Additionally, as I discussed in previous posts, I did not want to compete against “brick & mortar” quilt shops (though absolutely no quilt shop could have been threatened by my meager attempts to sell fabric) and become part of the “online fabric sales world” that threatens our beloved community quilt shops.

I did eventually temporarily close my Etsy shop (it’s been over a year so it has been an extended “temporary” closure) to rethink my strategy and handmade offerings.

My Etsy shop is temporarily closed but EE Schenck still has me listed as a wholesaler and they continue invite me each year to their Spring and Fall Trends show for now.

I attended my first show in September 2016 (see the post Ladies Friendship Circle) and got to hang out with my friend Joan H. as well as the lovely Marie Bostwick (a mutual friend of my friend Joan) and Mary Fons (a friend of Marie’s).


Mary Fons and Marie Bostwick, Trends September 2016

So when I received the invite from EE Schenck to the Spring Trends show and saw what classes were offered, I asked TTQH if he would like to go to Portland, Oregon for the weekend (it is only a 4 hour drive from my house) and attend Trends.


image credit: eeschenck.com

Beside the opportunity for a nice weekend getaway to Portland, one of the reasons I attended the Trends show was for a very reasonable price I could take “Take n’ Teach” classes from wonderful authors/teachers/designers such as Latifah SaafirKathy Cardiff, and Jody Houghton.

I was especially excited to take Jody Houghton’s class, Fabric Art Panels, because her work holds a special place in my heart. As a matter of fact I gaze at one of her panels nearly everyday: my very dear friend Judy (who got me into quilting and I consider my “Quilt Momma”) made me this wall hanging a couple years ago from a Jody Houghton panel:


The Drive to Portland

There are generally two ways to get from Central Oregon to Portland: Santiam Pass or Mount Hood Pass. Until late April (or later) both are at mountain elevations, are ski areas, and both are usually covered in snow. Sometimes the snow is packed on the road and most times until late Spring, chains or traction tires can be required. You always see tractor trailers at the lowest part of the elevation pulled over and putting on their chains to make it through the pass in the late Fall, Winter and early-mid Spring.

We decided to take Santiam Pass to Portland and below are photos from our snowy drive (from inside the car with the windows rolled up). I was glad TTQH was driving! (Actually is wasn’t that bad, we only 30 minutes or so driving on pack snow, the rest of the drive was just wet/snow dusted highway).


The Unexpected Roommate

Arriving in Portland we first stopped at Powell’s Books, the mega independent bookstore and a mandatory stop so TTQH could load up on more military history books (his other hobby besides quilting).


Image credit: powells.com

After that we headed to our hotel and checked into our room.

It had been a long drive from Central Oregon to Portland and we had spent a long time in Powell’s books, and I was eager to get into comfy clothes and relax. TTQH was in the bathroom and I was getting undressed and suddenly the door opened to our hotel room and a woman was backing into our room with her suitcase!

I exclaimed: “Hello there!” and startled her as I quickly pulled my pants back up. She was a well dressed congenial woman who graciously stated: “Oops, the woman at the front desk was new and I think she assigned me the wrong room.” We briefly laughed about it (though I was in utter shock and yelled to TTQH not to come out of the bathroom unless he was fully dressed) and she said she would go downstairs and sort it out. She also said she was there for the Trends show so I knew she was likely a quilter/crafter and therefore a wonderful person (in general, crafters are wonderful people – smile)!

Shaken (and feeling rather vulnerable as they obviously we handing out card keys to our room to others!) I immediately called the front desk and told them what happened. I then went down to the front desk in person and requested to have a new card key made up. The front desk staff apologized profusely and got everything fixed. The nice woman who had backed into our room was also there getting things sorted out and we laughed about it again.

When I got back to the room, I had calmed down and TTQH were able to have a laugh about it. I said to TTQH, “Well she seemed nice and I guess she could have slept between us if the hotel is completely out of rooms, ha!”

I figured I would run into the “unexpected roommate” at some point at the Trends show on Saturday and we would have a more relaxed laugh about it.

The Unexpected Teacher

Saturday, September 17th, after the Trends keynote speaker’s, Amy Barickman of Indigo Junction, I headed to the “Take n’ Teach” series of classes, my first class being with Jody Houghton.

And guess who was Jody Houghton? My Unexpected Roommate!!!!


We had quite the laugh about it when I first arrived at her booth for the class! Jody and I also shared the story with the other class participants who got a laugh out of it too!

Her class was wonderful and we learned how to make quick tote bags using her panels. Here are photos from the class and photos of some of the cool samples she had on display:


Jody is an absolutely lovely woman and a very talented designer and teacher.

Check out her panels and notions on her Etsy Shop: Sisterhood of Quilters by Jody Houghton Designs. I hope you will support her shop (or convince your local quilt shop to carry her items) as in my opinion she really captures the heart of the friendships and bonds that come from quilting together. I hope I get to connect with her again the future (but perhaps not as an unexpected roommate…ha!).

Speaking of quilting friendships and bonds, you can read my previous series of posts on my Quilting Sisters (Quilting Sisters, Part I and Quilting Sisters, Part II ).

It is sort of like the Universe brought us together – how random that the woman who created the panel in the wallhanging that means so much to me, “broke” into my room!

Next post I will continue with more stories from the Trends show (though none involving potential roommates!)


Our first time to Trends in September 2016 we took Mike and Sassy (who passed in December 2017).  TTQH only briefly attend Trends (leaving the dogs in the car outside for 1/2 hour) as he was in charge of the dogs (who did not like to be left in a hotel room alone).

We decided to leave Mike with some fellow schnauzer people and be “child-free” in Portland this time so we could enjoy the weekend together. TTQH was not interested in taking any classes but he had fun wandering around EE Schenck looking for dog themed fabrics and talking to other husbands (usually the husbands of quilt shop owners, etc.) at the show.

Here is a photo of Mike with his schnauzer buddies Chopper and Frieda, taken by their people and texted to us during the weekend so we knew Mike was having a good time. They labeled this photo “The Three Amigos”.


Feature image credit: eeschencks.com

Art Quilter Play Date

Last Thursday I took the day off from work to attend a SAQA “Play Date”. SAQA (Studio Art Quilt Associates) is the art quilting group I’ve been part of since 2013.

One of our members, Helen, was generous enough to host the “play date” in her lovely studio. We got to play with fabric printing using fabric inks and here are a couple photos from the play date.

  • Helen encouraged us to bring drawings on freezer paper to transfer into our fabric printing designs. Below are some of the drawings other art quilters brought to the play date:


  • Our host has a lot of experience with fabric printing and had all sorts of fun tool like the shape below which made an interesting design on fabric:


  • Work in progress:


  • There were lots of wonderful pieces made during the play date and here are some examples from my fellow “play-daters” (only sharing photos of works that I got permission from the arts to share):


  •  Here are some of my pieces (I am not going to show you my first pieces that I tried to hide in the trash, ha!):


I plan to turn this collection of tree like images into an art quilt.


Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) and I just returned from a weekend trip to Portland to attend the Trends show. The next post I will share photos and stories from my experience meeting and taking classes from Latifah Saafir, Jody Houghton, and Kathy Cardiff. Amy Barickman of Indigo Junction was the keynote speaker.

I will close this post with a photo from out the passenger window from our drive from Central Oregon to Portland, Oregon via Santiam Pass on Friday morning (TTQH was driving thank goodness):


The Lesson & The Equation

I’ve been waiting to share this with you for quite a while. First, I needed to wait until the show’s curator gave me permission to share, and then I needed to be ready to share.

I am ready to share!

This post is an overdue follow up to my post Creative Inspiration: Stories My Father Told Me, originally posted in April 2016. You are welcome to read the original post but here is a synopsis of some of this post and a little bit of additional information:

While browsing the magazine section at our local Barnes & Noble bookstore in March 2016, I came across this magazine that I’ve never seen before: American Craft Magazine:

Screen Shot 2018-03-14 at 5.36.24 PM.png

Image credit: craftcouncil.org

In the April 2016 issue of American Craft they had an article about an exhibit, And Still We Rise by the Women of Color Quilting Network (WCQN).  I never heard of WCQN and immediately knew I wanted to join! 

I reached out to Dr.Carolyn Mazloomi, founder of WCQN, shared my blog links with images of my work and asked if I could join and she said yes.

I then spent a lot of time looking through the WCQN website and was inspired to create a series based on the incredible stories my father, Raoul Davis, Sr., told me while growing up – Stories My Father Told Me. 

I shared this with Dr. Mazloomi and she invited me to participate in the next WCQN show. (I was terrified and wanted to say “No” but I made myself say “Yes”)

The Lesson & The Equation

The WCQN show that I was incredibly lucky enough to be invited to participate, was based on the United Nations (U.N.) Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Participants had to select one of the thirty (30) Articles in this declaration and make a quilt inspired by the Article.

I selected Article 1 as it aligned with the lessons and values my father taught us as children:

“All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.”

I’ve shared partial images from the quilt I created, which is the first quilt in my series Stories My Father Told Me. Here is a full image of the quilt, courtesy of Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi, and below the image is my Artist Statement.

Article 1_TierneyDavis.jpg

Image courtesy of Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi


The Lesson & The Equation (2016) 50 x 50 inches
Applique, cotton, batiks, quilted

“Article I: All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.” – U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Article I of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights resonates the values that my father instilled in my siblings and me, as young children. My father grew up in the segregated South in the 1940s and embraced at an early age that change comes from respectful dialogue, not violence.

He taught us that regardless of what adversity we faced in life, we must face it with grace; and treat others with respect, dignity, and brotherhood. The foundation for a life lived embracing the values illustrated in Article I, begins at home, modeled and mentored by the adults in a child’s life. (THE LESSON)

In this quilt, a father (modeled after my own father in the 1970s) is teaching his children, on the main blackboard, THE EQUATION to achieving a world in which people are Free and Equal: Reason + Conscience = Spirit of Brotherhood

The two individual blackboards, “Dignity” and “Respect”, are the building blocks of the Free & Equal equation. I am from a family of educators, beginning with my great-grandfather. The blackboards in the quilt honor that legacy.

My father also taught us another key lesson, which is best expressed in the words of Mahatma Gandhi: “I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet”.


This quilt will debut in the WCQN show, Visioning Human Rights in the New Millennium: Quilting the World’s Conscience, on August 17, 2018 at the FiltonCenter for Creative Arts in Hamilton, OH.


Image credit: ohio.org

Yes I will be attending the opening in August and there are no words I could type that would convey my excitement to be participating in this important exhibit. I am feeling very blessed to have been given this opportunity.

There will also be a book that accompanies the exhibit and Dr. Mazloomi’s books are incredible. Search “Carolyn Mazloomi” on Amazon to see a sample of books related to past exhibits. I own several of these books and to call them “inspirational” would be an understatement.

Below is an example of one of the books from a WCQN exhibit (which is currently touring):

Screen Shot 2018-03-14 at 6.18.11 PM.png

Image credit: schifferbooks.com

And Still We Rise: Race, Culture and Visual Conversations is on exhibit at the Freedom Center until September 1, 2018 – here is thelink if you would like to check out more information on this exhibit.

I had the opportunity to finally meet Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi in person this past September when I attended Quilters Take Manhattan (see post The “Dance Partner” – Michael Cummings at QTM 2017). I tried not to behave like too much of a “fan girl” but I was completely in awe of this amazing and accomplished woman.

What is Next?

I mentioned in my post Art& Fear, etc., I was struggling with two looming art quilt deadlines.

One of those quilts is for my local SAQA group annual show which I have started (will share in upcoming post); and the other one is a new art quilt for the next WCQN show I have been invited to participate in. I cannot share the details at the time, I need to wait until the curator is ready to officially announce the show – but it is another really exciting opportunity!

With the first quilt done in the Stories My Father Told Me series, I have mapped out the next 6 – 8 quilts in the series based on stories from my father’s life and lessons he taught me.

I just need to start making them (and if I win the lottery I plan to work full-time on completing this series)…


I think my whole experience demonstrates that you have to take risks in life and when an opportunity comes to your door – take it!

“Go out on a limb. That’s where the fruit is.” — Jimmy Carter

Imagine if I never contacted Dr. Mazloomi? (Of course imagine if I never randomly opened that magazine at my local Barnes & Noble…thank you Universe!)

Creative Inspiration: A Surprisingly Beautiful Monday

We have a break in our Winter weather and I went on a beautiful hike at Shevlin Park this past Monday with my friend and her Bernese Mountain Dog.

I thought I’d share photos from my hike as part ongoing series of posts on my sources of Creative InspirationMy blogging buddy Mary @Zippy Quilts had a recent post about Inspiration from Nature, and her post inspired this post!


I think several of the photos above would make awesome art quilt compositions! Especially the one of Luna the Bernese Mountain Dog!


After our hike we went to a lovely bakery for lunch (salad and sandwiches, not pastries for lunch!) and then wandered a well curated small indie bookstore nearby, Roundabout Books.

I have an old post about the joy of spending time in an Indie bookstore Dudley’s Bookshop Cafe – Independent Bookstores; Wonderful & Magical Places, and I also enjoyed wandering around Roundabout Books.

Here are a couple photos from my visit:

Like Dudley’s, Roundabout Books has an antique typewriter on display:


They have a wreath made from recycled book pages:


The entire shop is peppered with Staff Suggestions of great books to read (I did purchase the science fiction book The Fifth Season to read after discussing with one of the staff):


Their counter was made from books (I did not want to bother the patron to move so I could take the photo):


And they had a great quote above their backdoor:


Sewing & Stitchery Expo 2018, Part II

Let’s dive into a continuation of yesterday’s post, Sewing & Stitchery Expo 2018, Part I.


I appreciate the comments and as one commenter stated: “My brain would be on overload”. Yep, my brain was on major overload.

But at least I did not get this overloaded:


Yes the paramedic arrived for a crafter who had passed out at Sew Expo and hit her head. She was okay and I am not sure if they had to take her out on the stretcher or no (I did not want to “rubberneck” around the scene (another attendee filled me in as I walked by).

Buttons, So Many Buttons

Here is a sampling of the numerous booths of buttons. I did not linger in these booths too long as I have enough buttons in my life right (even if the booths had “life-changingly-beautiful” buttons 🙂


Need a Sewing Machine?

There were so many domestic sewing machine vendors: Bernina, Pfaff, Brother, Janome, Baby Lock, etc. There are also many long-arm machine vendors. They all had “show specials” and were willing to spend as much time as you needed to convince you to buy one of their machines!


There were also sewing machine cabinet/sew room organization vendors; of course my dream Bernina machines.


Yes most of the photos above have to do with my fantasy/dream Bernina sewing machines! As I am a “Berninaphile”, I spent time wandering around these booths. (If you ever win the lottery and want to get me something nice as you have really enjoyed my blog, I have a couple $10,000 + priced Berninas in mind!)

I even bought some awesome Bernina fabric at one of the Bernina booths:


I do not know what I am going to make with it (I bought 2 yards of it) but it was one of those “I have to have it” moments 🙂

Serious Cuteness

Most of the vendors had beautiful and well thought out displays, but a couple really caught my attention:

Craft your own wool stitched treats (very low calories, ha!):


This vendor made a covering for her booth so you entered a quilted house:


Nothing to wear? Turn a quilt into a dress:


A sampling of some of the cool quilts on display in vendor’s booths:


The medallion one makes me think of Melanie @Catbird Studios!

A Touch of Home

My beloved Stitchin’ Post Quilt Shop from Sisters Oregon had a vendor booth at the show. They are there every year. I first learned about the Stitchin’ Post when I lived in Seattle, WA, had just started quilting and went to my first Sew Expo around 2000 or 2001. Little did I know a couple years later (2005) I would be moving to Central Oregon and they would become one of my favorite quilt shops!


It was fun to say hi to local people I knew working the booth and believe or not, I actually purchased a couple items at the booth (although I can shop at the Stitchin’ Post anytime back home!)

Just Some Random Photos

Here are a couple random photos that did not fit into their own header section.

Endless displays of patterns and fabric bundles:


Cool cork fabric:


Very fancy handmade seam rippers! (Taking seam ripping to the next level…)


And endless “bits and bobs” you want to add to your sewing/crafting room:


Overstimulated and Hungry

We wandered ourselves near the point of fatigue with no break for eating. Finally about 2:00 pm we had enough and found a place to eat nearby.

We could have eaten inside the convention center/fairgrounds like many crafters did:


But we seriously needed to escape Sew Expo (a new Science Fiction film idea: Escape from Sew Expo) and we ventured a couple block away to a New Orleans cuisine themed eatery and had amazing Po’ Boys sandwiches away from the maddening crowds!


Mmmmmm catfish Po’ Boy sandwich and a microbrew

Our Haul!

When we returned to my Quilting Sisters home who was hosting us this weekend, we pulled out our individual hauls of goodies and did a “show & tell”.

Here’s a photo of some of our combined group haul:


There is a lot more but we do not want a record of it – ha! (“What happens at Sew Expo, stays at Sew Expo”).


My Quilting Sisters are a jovial group and we enjoy teasing each other.

For the rest of the evening, and the next day, we did a mini quilt retreat and each worked on small projects we brought with us. Well the hostess was working on a scrap quilt with half-square triangles and my other Quilting Sister was working on a wedding quilt with a lot of trimming.

To tease me about buying a bag of cool scraps at Sew Expo, they put together some additional scraps for me to take home:


As you can see by the ruler, unless I was going to glue a tiny quilt together, these scraps are a little too small….

Sewing & Stitchery Expo 2018, Part I

I spent a brief (it seemed too short) 3 day trip to visit friends in Gig Harbor, WA and go to the Sewing & Stitchery Expo (“Sew Expo“) in Puyallup, WA at the Washington State Fairgrounds with some of my WA based Quilting Sisters.


I took a zillion photos and in this post I will share some of the “zillion” photos and give you a taste of what it is like to attend Sew Expo.

The Flight to SeaTac Airport

When Terry the  Quilting Husband (TTQH) and Mike the Miniature Schnauzer dropped me off at our small Central Oregon airport (RDM), I thought of this old post from Sassy the Highly Miniature Schnauzer’s SchnauzerSnips blog: Human Storage?. From a dog’s point of view, as this post discusses, it appears that I am just staying at the airport for a couple of days – Mike sees me dropped off at the airport and then picked up at the airport!

Flying in small planes makes me slightly nervous. When we moved from Seattle to Central Oregon I had to acclimate to taking smaller planes. Our airport is small and cannot handle standard size planes/jets, just the Turboprop size planes, like the one in the image below:


But I discovered, years ago, thanks to my primary care doctor, the magic of a small dose of Ativan and a dose of Dramamine – it makes the flight awesome.

Alaska Airlines serves, for those 21 and over, a complimentary glass of wine or a Pacific NW Microbrew during these small plane flights between Central Oregon and Seattle. The flight is between 45 – 55 minutes and I enjoyed a blissful flight with my microbrew, a biscuit, my knitting and relaxing music on my smartphone (in airplane mode of course!):


Flying in small planes is better with a brew and biscuits!

I got quite a bit of knitting done on the scarf I mentioned in the post A Case Against Procrastination, during the trip between the flight, hanging out in the airport before flights, and hanging out visiting with my friends. I will share an update when the scarf is done (so you won’t lie awake at night wondering when I will get that scarf done – ha!)

Welcome to Washington State Fairgrounds

The Sasquatch is the unofficial mascot of the Pacific NW. I lived in Seattle for 8 years and did a lot of hiking but never saw a Sasquatch running around! But when you walk into the WA State Fairground there is a carved Sasquatch to greet you and it was decorated for Sew Expo!


Inside Sew Expo: The Crowds

There are two buildings housing vendors for Sew Expo and the space is HUGE! It took us 4 – 5 hours to walk around Sew Expo. Here are a couple photos of the crowds and some random vendors:


It’s Called “Sew Expo” But There Was a Lot of Yarn!

Sew Expo is really about most textile based crafts and there were many yarn vendors. I know many of you knit and crochet, so let me share some of the endless yarn-yumminess in the vendor booths at Sew Expo:


Special Booths: Pendleton Wool

Some vendors had special large booths, such as the large booth of Pendleton Woolen Mills. They had a large area in their booth in which they were selling Pendleton Woolen Mills selvages. I could not figure out why someone would want to buy a giant bag of these selvages until I noticed that there were shag rugs made from these selvages. Great recycling!


The Fabric, Oh The Fabric

Okay it is called “Sew Expo” and so the bulk (at least 60% or more) of the vendor booths were dedicated to fabric for sewing garment, making quilts, and other sewn crafts. Here is just a sampling of the fabric delights I browsed:


This booth had an exceptionally delicious offering of silks:


There were lot’s of fabric deals:


But the “craziest” fabric deals of all were the “trough-o-fabric” at $7.99 a pound section and the vendor selling yardage of high quality fabric at $5.99+ a yard.


A ridiculous amount of quilting fabric remnants, fat quarters and yardage were thrown in giant rolling tubs. You grab a large plastic bag and fill it up with what you want, they weigh it and you pay $7.99 a pound.


Yes this looks like total insanity, and it was but I had so much fun with the other quilters digging through the troughs. We were all helping each other and looking out for whatever someone asked for help looking for. for $14.00 I picked up about $40 – $50 in high quality quilting fabric (some Kaffe Fasset stripe fabric, etc).

Fabric Roll-Land

This area was huge and took up a large section of the last aisle in one of the Pavilions at Sew Expo. One of my Quilting Sisters picked up some mind blowing fabric deals in this section but I had “Fabric Burnout” by the time I got to this section and only took photos, no serious shopping (which I regretted later when I saw the deals my friend got!)


Let’s end this post here, I will continue in the next post with the rest of the Sew Expo experience.


Thank goodness I spent a little time proofreading this post before posting it. It was not a “Freudian Slip”, just typing too quick, but I did type “Sex Expo” instead of “Sew Expo” in several area (including at first the post title, which I expanded to the official name of the event).

Trust me, if I went to “Sex Expo”, I would not be posting about it – ha! (And that would be a very strange thing to attend with one’s Quilting Sisters!)


Feature photo credit: sewexpo.com

TTQH Update

A quick Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) update and follow up to the post Spinning the Homespuns with TTQH .

TTQH recently finished 25 large nine-patch blocks (each square of fabric used in each block was originally a 6.5″ square) made from my stash of homespuns:


We’ve decided not to piece the lattice between the blocks (the original pattern calls for 2.5″ inch blocks pieced as a border on two side of each block to create the lattice):


Instead we are going use a single 2.5″ strip of different homespuns for the lattice. It will still give it a “scrappy” feel without all that piecing. I gave TTQH the option of piecing (and first cutting!) all those 2.5″ squares and he liked the solid strip idea instead!

Inspired by my friend Wendy and the book I borrowed from the library – Quilt As-You-Go Made Vintage by Jera Brandwig, I am going to “quilt-as-you-go” this king-size quilt.


Image credit: Amazon.com

I am very tempted to buy this book, I really enjoyed it and it has great instructions on three (3) ways to join blocks in the “quit-as-you-go” method.

Alas, as I am still working on my two art quilts with deadlines, quilting-as-you-go on TTQH’s quilt is on the back-burner for now.

I will share updated photos when he gets the borders on each block; and show a simulation of what the quilt will look like once it is completed (using the “design bed” a phrase I stole from my blogging buddy Claire @ knitNkwilt).


So what else has TTQH worked on recently? Well he was involved with what some people might call “Crafter-Spouse-Misuse” (I thought the word “abuse” was too strong).

In my previous post, A Case Against Procrastination , I shared that I had only completed 13.5″ of a knitted scarf that I was making to coordinate with a knitted hat I made in December 2017:


One of the reasons, besides obvious procrastination, that I have not progressed on knitting this scarf is that I ran out of the ball of yarn I was working from (the remnant the original ball of yarn I used for the hat).

So last evening, in support of me moving forward on my scarf (so I can coordinate with the hat from the same yarn and stay warm now that Snowmageddon is back in Central Oregon!), TTQH agreed to wind a new ball of yarn for me from my waiting skein.


As you will see below, Mike the Miniature Schnauzer (who is overdue for a grooming) is giving me the furry eyeball for taking up TTQH’s time with this task.


Mike’s irritation and Crafter-Spousal-Misuse aside, I now have a nice wound ball of yarn and it’s time to return to knitting in front of the TV again!


A Case Against Procrastination

Duh. Tierney we all know procrastination is not a good idea.

Yes, very true, and I have a recent example that reinforces why it is not a good idea.

In my 12/04/17 post Library Stack Catch Up, I shared a photo of a recently completed knitted hat:


I also stated in this post: “I have another skein of the same yarn for my hat and I am thinking of making a coordinating ribbed scarf.”

I did start knitting a coordinating scarf. I was feeling lazy and decided to do a mindless knit a row/purl a row pattern (even though it tends to curl on the ends) instead of a ribbed pattern which required more thought. My plan was to finish up the scarf while watching television in the evening.

However as we moved from December into January in Central Oregon the weather was not too bad. No snow and on and off in January we had that “Sprinter” (Spring-like in Winter) weather I’ve mentioned in previous posts (see recent post A Beautiful Monday where were are on a hike in 60 degree weather).

So I procrastinated.

I did get nearly 13.5″ of scarf knitted but it is not enough to wrap around the neck of Mike the Miniature Schnauzer much less a human:


Then…Bam – Snowmageddon is back in Central Oregon! Sprinter is OVER! Winter is here, for real (heavy snow and frigid temperatures)!


No that is not a grainy photograph, that is snow falling live


Terry the Quilting Husband and Mike trudging through the snow

And because I procrastinated, I had no scarf to match my hat! I had to face the elements “less coordinated” as I could have been (smile):


On a chilly, windy, snowy dog walk (I am wearing an old ribbed scarf a friend made me).

I am now trying to finish the scarf, no more procrastination, I have learned my lesson!


In my series of posts, The Library Stack, it is apparent that I love to borrow a huge stack of library books at one time.

In case you ever wonder how I manage the borrowed library books I have finished that are ready for return to the library (okay you likely have never wondered this but I will share anyway), I wanted to share my system.

We have an old IKEA shoe rack that we keep under the coat rack by the front door. On top of that shoe rack I have a wire basket that holds all library books ready for return:



Please ignore the winter mess of coats and Mike’s Winter-Walk-Drying-Towel on the coat rack above 🙂

We also keep a tray with a box of tissues (for runny noses during winter walks), earphones for audiobook listening, and keys for easy access. Yes I guess I could have tidied the area up before taking the photo but I decided to “keep it real”!

I started this library wire basket system years ago after hearing a cautionary tale from a friend:

Her husband was trying to be helpful and returned a stack of books for her to the library. Turns out these books were expensive new art books she just purchased, not library books!

Her husband went back to the library to plead his case and ask for the books back but the library had already given them to the Friends of the Library Group for the next fund raising sale. They were integrated with the other donations stored off site and not retrievable (they don’t give back donations or have the staff to search for “oops” donations). So my friend never saw her lovely stack of new art books again! (I think she tried to find them at the annual fundraiser book sale but they were gone).

So I can safely ask my husband to return my library books for me as they are only kept in one place!

Creative Inspiration: Recycled Textiles

I thought I’d share a little about my love for recycled textiles as part of my ongoing series of posts on my sources of Creative Inspiration.

Unlikely Materials for Quilt Making: Recycled Textiles

Nearly 2 years ago (March 2016) I did a post on “Unlikely Materials” as part of the Blog Tour for my friends Wendy Hill and Pat Pease’s new book,  Creative Quilt Challenges (C&T Publishing, 2016), and shared the story of how I transitioned from only using quilting cotton fabrics to experimenting with using recycled textiles in my quilt creations.

Since 2012 I have experimented with recycled textiles such as recycled clothing (not suitable for clothing donation) and recycled garment and home decor fabric samples – all items that were likely headed to the landfill. I feel a great sense of joy when I create art with those items that would have been discarded.

Recently I pulled out my entire collection of recycled textiles to work on my piece for our annual Central Oregon SAQA art quilting group exhibit which opens at the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Shop in July. This year’s theme is “The Threads That Bind” and the piece like previous years, must meet the dimensions of 18″ x 40″.

For the past couple years I have made 18″ x 40″ pieces, based on the selected annual theme, from recycled materials such as “Recycled Door” (the theme was “Doors”) and “The Recycled Road” (the theme was “Pathways”):

If you would like to read about the development of these pieces, just search their names in the search box on my blog. You can also check out these pieces on my art quilting blog, Improvisational Textiles.

For this year’s piece I am again working with recycled textiles, but this time using different recycled textiles since I used up most of the recycled clothing in the above pieces.

My piece is in progress (it was one of the two art quilts with deadlines I mentioned in my post Art & Fear, etc., that I had yet to start) and it is called Recycled Love.

I am not ready to reveal my current piece while it is in progress, it feels private right now.

Interestingly in the book Art & Fear: Observations On The Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking (1993) by David Bayles and Ted Orland, they discuss that the artist needs time to work on their work in private without feedback from the world.

(See the Postscript section for more on this book and the post Art & Fear, etc..)

Creative Inspiration From Playing with My Recycled Textiles

As I mentioned earlier in this post, I’ve pulled out my entire collection of recycled textiles while I work on my new piece, Recycled Love. Just having my entire collection laid out before me was a huge source of Creative Inspiration!

They were a little too huge a source of creative inspiration and I ended up designing in my mind 5 – 10 future art quilts until I finally calmed down and made my mind just focus on the art quilt with the deadline!

So I thought I would give you a peek into my recycled textiles collection, most of which were donated/given to me by others.

Recycled Wool

My collection of recycled wool includes manufacturing scraps from wool suit making and Pendleton blanket manufacturing scraps. It also include some felted wool scraps and  various crafting wool scraps from other crafters’ projects.


Recycled Denim

This collection includes our old jeans and old denim shirts; jeans given to me by friends; and an old denim duvet cover. I also keep my denim scraps from previous projects using recycled denim (as long as they are bigger than 3″ x 3″).


Home Decor Samples

These were given to me by a couple who did remodeling work on our home. A client of theirs gave them a large box of home decorating upholstery samples and they shared the box with me! Some of the fabrics seem hideous for a sofa or chair but they would be awesome in an art quilt!


Dyed Silk Scraps

A friend gave me these scraps as samples from a hand dyed silk class she took years ago.


I took them out of the sample book there were in and discovered if I gently ironed them and then sewed them onto muslin I could use them in an art quilt! Below is an example as I have used them in my piece in progress, Recycled Love:


Couture Fabric Scraps (Silk, Linen and Wool)

These are my post precious scraps and to read the story behind these couture fabric samples and scraps from New York City Fashion District Circa 1990s, see this page on my Improvisational Textiles website: Quilting Meets Couture.


The photo does not do the fabrics justice. You can see on the Quilting Meets Couture page the many art quilts made with these beautiful recycled fabrics (all of which were scheduled for destruction by the manufacturer had they not been rescued).

Below is an image of some of my art quilts that I made with these recycled couture fabrics which are in the book 1000 Quilting Inspirations: Colorful and Creative Designs for Traditional, Modern and Art Quilts by Sandra Sider (2015). They are all quilted by Betty Anne Guadalupe.



I was going to do a follow up on the post Art & Fear, etc. that I mentioned in this post, and share/discuss some additional quotes/passages from the book that really resonated with me.

However, on further thought, I decided that this is a book you should experience on your own and read first hand the brilliant insights on the nature of creating art and dealing with the inherent fear and sense of vulnerability and risk that comes with putting your art “out there”.

So instead I will share one more quote from the book and then return to talking about recycled textiles:

“In the end it all comes down to this: you have a choice (or more accurately a rolling tangle of choices) between giving your work your best shot and risking that it will not make you happy, or not giving it your best shot — and thereby guaranteeing that it will not make you happy. It becomes a choice between certainty and uncertainty. And curiously, uncertainty is the comforting choice.”

― David Bayles & Ted Orland, Art & Fear: Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking


Recently I’ve gained a bunch of new tierneycreates blog followers! Welcome new followers/readers, thanks for joining this random discussion of a crafter’s life!

I guess with all the new followers, I should actually write a new post (what a novel idea!) so they have something to actually “follow” (smile).

Last post I shared with you my “Aurifilia” – my obsession with the beautiful Italian AURIfil thread. This post I want to share with you someone else’s obsession: Kaffe-philia.

(“-philia” = denoting fondness, especially an abnormal love for a specified thing – dictionary.com).

Saturday I visited the home of a quilting friend who is obsessed with Kaffe Fassett fabric.

In case you have never heard of Kaffe, especially if you are not a quilter, he is a U.S. born designer who moved to the U.K. when he was a young man. He first made it big in embroidery needlepoint and knitting and then moved into quilt and fabric design. Here is a link to his website: www.kaffefassett.com if you would like to read more about Kaffe Fassett.

My friend has been collecting Kaffe Fassett fabric for many years and here is a peek inside her stash:


A close up of some of her Kaffe Fassett fabric delights:


And a peek inside one of her boxes, on top of her “rack-of-Kaffe”, with her shot cotton stripes collection:


It is even more yummy in person but hopefully the photos give you a taste of her collection.

She has made many quilts with Kaffe Fassett fabrics over the years and here is a commission quilt she is currently putting the binding on, made exclusively with Kaffe Fassett fabrics using a pattern from a Kaffe Fassett book:


Here is the cool fabric on the back which is a sateen and you can see a close up of some of the quilting she did on the quilt:


So you might be thinking: “Tierney, those fabric are lovely, do you own some?” I own a tiny bit of Kaffe Fassett fabric yardage. What I do have quite a bit of are Kaffe Fassett FABRIC SCRAPS! If you have followed my blog for a while you know of my love of fabric scraps (bordering on pathology).

You will never guess where I got the fabric scraps…(hint: from my friend with the Kaffe-philia).

Although I have not invested in a lot of Kaffe Fassett yardage, I am guilty of my own Kaffe-philia (true confession time). I was (last year I finally stopped) obsessed with owning the latest Kaffe Fassett book, and here is my bookshelf to prove it:

Question: So Tierney, just how many quilts have you made from all these Kaffe Fassett books you own?

Answer: (Sheepish grin) None. But I plan to in the future, I really do!

My friend with the Kaffe fabric obsession, and I with the Kaffe book obsession, got to meet the fabulous Kaffe Fassett a couple of years ago at a book signing at the Stitchin’ Post in Sisters, Oregon. I tried not to go to all “fan girl” on him when I got him to sign one of my books.

There are many wonderful fabric designers, do not know why his fabric and books are so addicting!

Do any of you have a little bit of Kaffe-philia?


Recently, one of the bloggers I follow, thecraftycreek, has been working on a lovely Kaffe Fassett quilt that you might want to check out if you love Kaffe Fassett like some of us do. See her post – Feel the Sunshine and Do a Happy Dance! 


This post is actually for me, but I will explain more about that later.

First I want to talk about Aurifilia. Yes, I completely made this term up, however, “Aurifilia” is an obsession, perhaps unhealthy perhaps not, with AURIfil Italian Threads.

Quilter True Confessions

My “Aurifilia” began 5 – 6 years ago when another quilter introduced me to these addicting Italian threads.

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Photo credit: aurifil.com

It started with purchasing multipurpose neutral colored threads: cream, white, light gray etc. It progressed into buying less multipurpose colored threads: blues, greens, purples, browns.

Finally, it evolved into buying quilt designer collections of AURIfil thread in unusual bright or strong colors, with no specific plan or purpose for these threads.

Realizing my “Aurifilia” has gotten a bit out of control, I decided to reorganize my threads by brand, instead of color, to see just how much AURIfil (and in what colors) I had on hand.


I went from this organization (by color):


To this organization (by brand):


After organizing my Aurifil threads, I discovered I currently have no gray! Light gray is a great neutral color, in my opinion) for stitching; and medium and dark gray would look lovely as topstitching.

Why this post is for me

It is inevitable I am going to bring more AURIfil thread into my life (at least some gray!). The problem in the past is I could not remember what colors I had on hand when I was at shop and fell into an acute bout of Aurifilia.

Now I can whip out my smartphone, pull up this post and see what Aurifil I already have in my collection.

I might even update this post ever so often with the latest photo of my Aurifil collection!


I decided to do the same thing with my fabric yardage collection – keep on my blog photos of my current fabric collection. I added these photos to my tierneycreates Studio Tour page at the bottom if you would like to take a peek.

Yes our blogs can be our online diaries, why can’t they be our online catalogues too?




The Library Stack

It’s been a while since I’ve posted my latest library stack like in my series of posts The Library Stack . Why? Because I took a break from “library stacks” and limited myself to one book at a time or actually reading books/periodical from my own stash!

But I could not stay away from my beloved library stack from my beloved public library, and yesterday I picked up a new stack:


The first book I am working through is Quilt As-You-Go Made Vintage by Jera Brandwig – a Pacific NW Authors (she lives in Seattle where I used to live!)

I discovered this book in the Non-Fiction New Releases section (first place I check out when headed upstairs at the library). Borrowing this is perfect timing, as my friend and quilting mentor Wendy H. has been advising me on how Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) and I can do “quilt-as-you-go” on the king-size quilt TTQH is currently working on. This book lays out three methods for quilt as-you-go in a very easy format.

I am tempted to buy the book but I am trying to take a break from adding any more books to my obscene craft book collection (I have an old post about my craft book collection, Craft Book Hoarder?!?!?, but maybe someday I will do an updated post of the current levels of craft book obsession..).

TTQH continues to work on his quilt on my sewing machine and Mike continues to keep him company in the chair in my sewing room!



A Beautiful Monday

I meant to post this yesterday but the day got away from me (where does time go? do the minutes slip away to the same place missing socks go?).

I do not work on Mondays and this past Monday I went for a lovely hike with my friend Laurie and her Bernese Mountain Dog, Luna along the Deschutes River Trail off of Farewell Bend Park.


We are having “Sprinter” (Spring-like Winter, yes I totally made that up) in Central Oregon. Monday was in the late 50s to early 60s degrees F (14 – 15 degrees C for my blogging friends outside the US).  It was truly like a sunny blue sky Spring day (minus the Spring foliage).

We had a wonderful hike along the Deschutes River. Luna got to play in the river so she really happy and as a bonus for her and the humans, we ran in the puppy/”mini-me” version of Luna – an adorable Bernese Mountain Dog puppy named Willow.

Well, instead of me telling you about the hike, why don’t I just share photos and let the photos speak for themselves!


The Deschutes River Trail and Farewell Bend Park connect you back into the Old Mill District, an outdoor shopping and dining area built around an old lumbar mill, hence the name (www.oldmilldistrict.com/about/history/).

Laurie and I got a kick out of the app-based rental bikes parked at the Old Mill. You sign up and pay for the rental using a smartphone app!


We plan to rent them someday to explore the surrounding area by bike without having to haul our bikes down to the area!

Actually we are planning monthly hikes to explore our town. I have lived in Central Oregon 12 years and there is so much I have not yet explored, or I just want to explore again!


I so appreciate the comments, insights and encouragement on my 02/04/18 post Art & Fear, etc..

I got less stuck (or got over my “inertia” an awesome word my blogging buddy Claire of knitNkwilt commented) and mapped out the required dimensions of one of the art quilts with a looming deadline:


I also pulled out my recycled materials stash to start playing with fabrics based on the design I have sketched!


Moving forward! Unstuck! (for now…)


Art & Fear, etc.

I am feeling stuck. I have two looming deadlines for art quilts for two upcoming shows and I have not started either pieces.

I am dealing with feeling stuck in two ways: 1) reading an inspirational book; and 2) sewing some traditional blocks.

Inspirational Book

At the January meeting of the art quilting group I belong to (Central Oregon SAQA) our group leader shared that she was reading Art & Fear: Observations On The Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking (1993) by David Bayles and Ted Orland.

art & fear.jpg

Image credit: Amazon.com

After the meeting, I immediately reserved the book at my public library and just picked in up from the library on Friday. Diving into this awesome book I discovered a couple great quotes about the reality of creating/making art:

“Making art is dangerous and revealing. Making art precipitates self-doubt, stirring deep waters that lay between what you know you should be, and what you fear you might be.”

“…fears arise in those entirely appropriate (and frequently occurring) moments when vision races ahead of execution. Consider the story of a young student…who began piano studies with a Master. After a few months’ practice (the student) lamented to his teacher ‘but I can hear the music so much better in my head than I can get out of my fingers’. To which the Master replied, ‘What makes you think that ever changes?'”

“The materials of art…seduce us with their potential.”  

(This last quote made me think of stumbling upon that incredible textile that you know will be perfect in a future piece)

I am only on page 20 and so far there are many gems in this book. Currently I highly recommend it if you are struggling with creating art or moving forward on your artistic journey.

At the beginning of this post I mentioned I have not started two art quilts with looming deadlines. I have actually designed and mapped out both pieces on paper but have not begun to the process of transferring my vision to fabric. That is where I am stuck (likely because of fear).

Stitching Myself Unstuck

I knew I needed to do something to become “unstuck” but I could not force myself to start working on either art quilt when I am not feeling inspired. I could however get myself in a creating mood by sewing something.

So I pulled out my bag of scraps from working on Farm Girl Vintage blocks (see series of posts Farm Girl Vintage Blocks)


and made a couple more blocks:


These blocks are about as far as you can get from art quilting but they got me sewing again and it was fun to try to be limited by what was in the scrap bag (from Farm Girl Vintage blocks already made).

I will likely make a couple more blocks and then I will do a post showing all my completed Farm Girl Vintage blocks to date.

I will continue reading the Art & Fear book and look at starting my art quilts.

Have you ever felt creatively stuck and what do you do to get “unstuck”?


A follow up to my previous post Spinning the Homespuns with TTQH, Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) has moved into my sewing studio to work on his piece.

We have decided to sell his Baby Lock sewing machine and he is going to use my Bernina. I can better support him on technical issues if he is using the same brand of machine (I can trouble shoot my Bernina in my sleep).

Plus he likes working in my sewing area, it has a better set up with my latest room rearrangement.


Mike the Mini Schnauzer: “Now he will sew in here all the time?!?!?”


TTQH enjoying the small design wall on the closet door right behind the sewing area


TTQH working on his piece

Featured image: Dave Dyet, free images.com

Spinning the Homespuns with TTQH

This is a follow up to the post Slashing the Stash with TTQH.

Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) is ready to make another quilt and this time he wants to make a quilt for our bed – and we have a king-size bed.

He has an ambitious plan, after raiding my stash of homespun fabrics (brushed cotton fabrics woven in a primitive home style weave, usually in plaids) for a very large quilt!

He discovered this book, Slash Your Stash Quilts, while I was thinning out my quilt booklets in November. I had this one slated for donation but he wanted to keep it and make the Twinklers pattern with homespuns in my stash (he was actually trying to slash my stash!).


We reviewed the original pattern he chose in depth which led to him changing his mind. He is going to make another pattern in the book that does not have all those “points”:


I helped him cut 225 6.5″ x 6.5″ squares and he has sorted them into 25 nine patch sets:


Here he is playing (spinning) with some designs with the pile-o-homespuns on the large design wall in the hallway:


And they now are waiting by his sewing machine for him to start sewing…


More updates as the quilt progresses…


A quick follow up on the post Additional on “Additional Conversations” .

Originally I was going to hand quilt my large art quilt from recycled clothing, Additional Conversations:


I decided to “quilt it by check” and have my friend Betty Anne, professional long-arm quilter, do the quilting.

Here is the quilt laid out on the bed as I try to make sure I made the quilt back wide enough (using tan colored Peppered Cotton).


Betty Anne and I discussed an overall strategy for her quilting on the piece and I cannot wait to see her wonderful work!

Super Detox Soup

This post has nothing to do with quilting or crafting! However my blog is about a “Crafter’s Life” and crafters have to eat right? So I want to share a recipe for a very delicious “detox” soup I recently made.

We have local health food store called Natural Grocers. I received their sale flyer in the mail a week ago and it contained a recipe for Super Detox Soup.

I love making soups but normally I would be suspicious of such as soup (i.e. it sounds too healthy and not yummy) but after reviewing the recipe I decided to make it.


Natural Grocers’ Super Detox Soup simmering on the stove

It was MAJOR tasty! Surprisingly tasty! I had it for lunch each day for 4 days in a row and did not tire of it. The fresh ginger in it has a nice zing and it has pseudo-Thai soup flavors (without the lemongrass and basil).

Here is the link to the recipe on the Natural Grocers’ website: https://www.naturalgrocers.com/recipe/super-detox-soup/

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Image credit: naturalgrocers.com

I would paste the entire recipe into this post but it might be easier for you to just access and save the link to the original recipe.  If you do end up making it note in my opinion you do not need to add all the red chili pepper flakes the recipe calls for – I added only 1/2 and the spice level seemed perfect!

Now this is not a cooking blog so there are no step by step instructions – ha! If you would like to check out a real cooking blog I enjoy, check out In Diane’s Kitchen

I did create a new Blog Post Category – A Crafter Needs to Eat , where you will find previous posts that have to do with cooking/provide recipes or links.


This might seem random, but a Crafter also needs to use MS Office (MS Word, MS Excel, MS Powerpoint, etc.) and I discovered this wonderful sight with great tips on MS Office products:

One Minute Office Magic (https://oneminuteofficemagic.com)

A Case for Buying Only High Quality Quilting Fabric

The alternate title to this post was “A Cautionary Tale About Using Low Quality Inexpensive Fabric”.

First let me make a disclaimer in case you are already cringing  that I am about to get “preachy” about only buying high quality quilting fabric at quilt shops. I am only going to share my experience and my personal lesson, not make or imply any judgements on where you buy your fabric!

So let’s start at the beginning of my quilting journey, 17 – 18 years ago and see where this post goes from there…

My Early Days of Quilting: “I am not spending crazy money on fabric!”

I started quilting in 1999 or 2000 when my friend Judy, my now “Quilting Momma”, convinced me to make my first quilt. Being a seasoned quilter, she tried to guide me towards only buying fabric at quilt shops. I refused.

Sure, I enjoyed going to quilt shops with her and looking at all the pretty fabric. When I looked at the prices however at the shops I would exclaim: “I am not spending crazy money on fabric!”. To her dismay, I would only shop at JOANN Fabric for my quilting fabric.

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Image credit: joann.com

Judy tried gently on numerous occasions to get me to reconsider my fabric purchasing location. She said: “You are spending all this time and energy making a quilt, don’t you want to invest in good fabric that will make the quilt last?” (Well she said something like that, I do not remember the exact statement).

Toshiba Digital Camera

Our first miniature schnauzers Fritz and Snickers wrapped in the first quilt I made with all JOANN fabric.

In Love With JOANN Fabrics & Crafts

My first couple years of quilting, I was absolutely in love with JOANN fabric, I thought it was a magical place. I would always wait for their sales – especially on fat quarters (pre-cut 18″ x 21″ pieces of fabric for the non-quilters reading this post). The fancy-smancy quilt shops sold fat quarters for $2 each but I could get them at JOANN’s for 99 cents and when they were on sale, I could get them for 69 cents and occasionally 49 cents!

I remember walking out of JOANN Fabrics after a major sale with a huge bag of fat quarters.

Made with Inexpensive, Low Quality Fabric

My first couple years of quilting, every quilt I made was made with fabric from JOANN Fabrics, including a wedding quilt I made with all blue fabrics. The pattern was called “Around the World”.

I loved the quilt so much, and the fabric I used to make it was so inexpensive, that I made  second one for myself.

This quilt has been well used over the years but around 5 years of moderate use, it began to wear in spots and even tear. I carefully stitched up the tears to fix the quilt. Until recently after many washings, the tears became more profound and I needed to do something else.


Here is an example of one of the tears as I prepare it under my sewing machine for repair

Before I share what I did to fix the tears, I want to discuss the lesson I feel I learned: my friend Judy was right – you want to use high quality fabric if you want a quilt to last and hold up over the years.

The fabric I used on this quilt was so incredibly flimsy, it obviously had a low thread count and did not wear well over the years. The picture may not fully capture it but the fabric has nearly the feel of paper, thin paper.

Yes this quilt is likely 15 – 16 years old but it should not have worn this way where the fabric feels like it is dissolving away!

Luckily, in my opinion, about 5 years into quilting, I stopped buying fabric for making quilts from JOANN Fabrics (I would still buy it for making gifts such as potholders, etc.) and “bit the bullet” and began only buying high quality fabric from quilt shops (and eventually also online resources that offered discounted high quality quilting fabrics).

“Spot Welding” a Quilt

After years of numerous hand stitched repairs to my beloved shabby blue quilt, I had to figure out another way to repair it or get rid of it (which seemed like a very sad option as I feel quite sentimental about this quilt).

I decided to patch the quilt with a fabric in my stash (yes high quality quilting fabric) that was the closest match I could find to the original JOANN Fabrics fabric.


The quilt looks quite crazy but I “spot welded” the torn areas all over the quilt and saved the quilt:


It is not pretty, but the quilt no longer has tears. I am sure I am going to have to continue to “spot weld” different areas of the quilt in the future.

I love this quilt and imagine if I had used high quality, high fiber count, quilting fabric from the start? As a new quilter, making an “Around the World” pattern quilt was fun but was also a lot of work and I should have invested in higher quality fabric.

What became of all the JOANN fabric I bought all those years ago? All gone from my stash – all donated to thrift shops. I donated most of it many years ago and got rid of the last of it over the past couple years during my purging related to embracing “semi-minimalism” (see posts in the category My Minimalism Journey).

I am interested in your comments and please know I am not being preachy or judgmental about where you buy your fabric!


I finished the coil for batik fabric baskets and bowls that I discussed in posts: Prepping to Make Fabric Bowls  and Prepping to Make Fabric Bowls, Continued.



I am so glad to have it done and now I will put it away until I feel like making another basket…

I have other projects calling me!

2017: A Blogging Year in Review

I’ve enjoyed reading other “year-end” summaries and reviews by other bloggers. So as January 2018 is nearly over, I better post my year review!

Seven (7) Favorite Projects of 2017

In no particular order, here are severn (7) of my favorite projects of 2017. Click on the link in the project name to see the related post about the piece.

Additional Conversations


Additional Conversations (2017) – in progress, by Tierney Davis Hogan

Cozy Cobblestones


Cozy Cobblestones (2017) by Tierney Davis Hogan. Quilted by Cindy Anderson of A Quilters’s Corner (inastitchquilting.com)

Happy Ending


Happy Endings (201) by Tierney Davis Hogan. Quilted by Cindy Anderson of A Quilters’s Corner (inastitchquilting.com)

Little Wallets


Little Wallet Madness

Basket of Love


Recycled Windows


Recycled Windows (2017) by Tierney Davis Hogan

The Recycled Road


The Recycled Road (2017) by Tierney Davis Hogan

Curiously, when looking through my blog posts of 2017, I see I started a lot of projects (like Farm Girl Vintage blocks), but did not complete that many projects in 2017! I better get my act together in 2018…

Seven (7) Favorite Posts/Series of Posts of 2017

I selected these seven (7) posts (or series of posts) because I really enjoyed writing them:

Quilting Studio Archaeology Series

Quilting Studio Archaeology

Quilt Studio Closet Purge

Quilt Studio Archeology and Purging, Part II

Quilt Studio Archaeology and Purge, Part III

Quilting Sisters Series

Quilting Sisters, Part I

Quilting Sisters, Part II

Quilters Take Manhattan Series

The “Dance Partner” – Michael Cummings at QTM 2017

Spiritual Quilting – Sherri Lynn Wood at QTM 2017

Behind the Scenes at the Antonio Ratti Textile Center – QTM 2017

Wrap Up of QTM 2017 Weekend

The Expenditure

Creative Inspiration: Just Cut Out the Bad Parts and Keep Going

The Backstitch and the End of Tangled Floss

A Case for Buying Things You Have No Plans for at the Time

Schnauzer Snips Follow Up

As many of you know, in December 2017 our beloved Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer and my fellow blogger passed.


Sassy was highly opinionated and awesome

For a brief moment I did think about having Mike, our other miniature schnauzer, take over her blog Schnauzer Snips – Musings from a Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer, as “Sassy” had been writing in her blog since 2013 when I started my tierneycreates blog.

However Mike is much more mellow and not as highly opinionated (and prefers to spend most his time napping in the back of Terry the Quilting Husband’s knees) so it would not make sense for him to want to take over the blog.

Eventually I would like to turn the blog into a memory photo and story book for Terry and I once I figure out what platform to do this on. For now the blog will stay live on the web in the “blogosphere” for whomever stumbles upon it.


Meet the Pups in the Feature Photo

I thought I will end this post on a silly note and introduce you to the pups in the feature photo for this post:


They are known as The Puppy Powers and they live in my sewing studio along with other furry creatures to keep me smiling while I sew. I found them years ago (I do not remember where) and they all have magnetic paws and can be posed it adorable poses and stuck on anything metal.

Their names are Pup, Puppy, Puppa, and Pups:


And here they are having fun on their photo shoot:


It’s challenging to keep a Radio Flyer full of puppies still during a photo shoot!


An Unexpected Treat

I could not decide what to title this post. I started with “An Unexpected Surprise” but that sounded redundant as “surprises” are “unexpected”. Next title idea as “A Surprise Treat”. Finally I went with “An Unexpected Treat”. (Blog post naming, one of the great struggles in my world…)

This afternoon I attended our Central Oregon SAQA (Art quilters) group. A very awesome SAQA member, Marion, gave me a belated holiday gift – a stash of fabrics!

She wrapped the stash very sweetly in the Japanese fabric wrapping style with a handmade braided fabric ribbon. I opened it in front of her but I have attempted (poorly) to rewrap it to give you a feel of how it looked when she presented to me:


A very subpar re-creation of a once beautifully fabric wrapped gift

Inside was a stack of fabric scraps, fat quarters and yardage:


Yummy stack!

Here is what the gift looks like laid out:


Yummy pile!

Did Marion randomly give me fabric from her stash? No. The story behind this is a while back one of the SAQA members who lives in Portland, Elizabeth, who is a prolific art quilter, was thinning her immense fabric stash. She posted to our Oregon SAQA facebook group that any SAQA member in the Portland area could drop and take away a haul of beautiful fabrics on a specific date.

Portland is a 4 hour drive for me and as much as I love free beautiful fabric selected by talented art quilters, an 8+ hour road trip was a bit much for free fabric.

What I did not realize is that Marion, who has a good feel for my taste in fabric, was picking me up a surprise stash!

It was a very thoughtful surprise!


I so enjoyed the comments on my previous post, Prepping to Make Fabric Bowls, Continued, and so did Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH).

Believe it or not, he actually returned to my sewing area today (with a gentle suggestion) and worked on a couple more feet of the coil for the fabric baskets/bowls.


He’s back!


This time Mike the Mini Schnauzer settles into the chair in my studio to monitor TTQH


Is Mike comfortably napping or fretting over when this whole TTQH sewing abuse will be over?

Now that we were getting some serious length on completed coil, we needed to do something to keep it organized and accessible (instead of become a twisted mess) for when it was time to make the fabric bowls. So I started wrapping it around an old piece of cardboard (I save cardboard from calendars, etc. to use as a surface when making cards, etc.):


Prepping to Make Fabric Bowls, Continued

This post is an addendum to yesterday’s post Prepping to Make Fabric Bowls and contains a rare photo of Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) who usually avoids being photographed for my tierneycreates posts!

Alright, this is going to appear like major husband abuse, but somehow I convinced TTQH to work on tedious sewing the coil of batik strips and clothesline required as prep to eventually make more fabric bowls.

I set it all up on my machine, provided training, and he got to work!



After a while, Mike the miniature schnauzer came in the room to check on him and witness the abuse:


Mike: “What is she making you do?!?!?”

Mike gave me the “furry eye ball” for putting TTQH through such tedium!


Mike: “I want to extract him from this room and bring him back to snuggle with me on the sofa”

TTQH finished about 12 – 15 feet of coil and then took a break for an underdetermined amount of time (though he promises to return to it in the future):


I did take TTQH out to dinner to his favorite brewery this evening, so this makes up for the tedious task as well as upcoming tedium!


I love real rainbows, they make me smile.

Our winter has been surprisingly mild in Central Oregon so far and last week we had rain instead of snow. We seem to always get rainbows after a rainstorm here and I took a couple photos while on a neighborhood walk.


Prepping to Make Fabric Bowls

This is a follow up to my 12/30/17 post “Throwing Pottery” on the Sewing Machine in which I shared images from making this fabric bowl from batik strips sewn onto clothesline:


In the post I mentioned that I do not make a lot of these baskets because the preparation to make these baskets is so time consuming.

Recently I was cleaning out old projects and found the start of a prep for another set of fabric bowls. I thought: “what the heck, let’s finish up the prep and maybe make some more bowls”.  This time I enlisted the help of Terry the Quilting Husband (TTQH) to help me with the prep.

Below I will share a summarized overview of the cumbersome prep and where I currently am on my journey to make more fabric baskets.

It Starts with Strips

The pattern I originally used, Bali Boxes pattern by Aunties Two, appears to have been designed/inspired by the famous (and addicting) Hoffman Bali Pops. I know not everyone reading this blog is a quilter, so let me share an image of the packages of 42 pre-cut 2.5″ color coordinated/themed batik fabric strips:


image from eBay, photographer unknown

Did any of you who are quilters, get addicted to collecting sets of Bali Pops when they came out in the 2000s? Hoffman still makes them but for me the novelty wore off (as did the novelty of buying “jelly rolls” which are another configuration of 42 2.5″ coordinating fabric strips).

I still have 3 – 4 Bali Pops leftover from my Bali Pop days; and all the fabric baskets and bowls I have made are from Hoffman Bali Pop sets. One set actually makes a couple baskets – 2 or more depending on how deep you make each basket. I am thinking I could get 3 bowls out of a Bali Pop.

I do not know the name of the Bali Pop I am currently using (they all have cute names for their color combinations like “Green Tea” and “Citrus Grove”) but I think it had to something to do with the ocean as you can see the colors are blues and greens.

The Tedious Steps Begin

This post is not intended to discourage you from making a covered clothesline fabric bowl or basket, but I want to show that a bit of patience with tedious tasks is required to make these items via the Bali Boxes pattern method.

First you have to sew forty-two (42), 2.5″ strips which each measure 44″ long, end to end. Do the math – that is one mega long strip you are creating. Not accounting for all the 1/4″ seams you are creating sewing end to end, 42″ x 44″ = 1848 inches, or 154 feet (46.94 meters).

After that is done, you have to fold each strip in half and then fold into itself again, to create a pocket/tunnel to nestle the clothesline.

Now for the steps above, this time I enlisted (or would this be considered “abused”) TTQH. He amazingly created this ball of batik strips after much work:


It is a large ball and tightly wound/packed. I am amazed at his patience to do this for me, especially to double fold like 140+ feet of sewn strips (I used some quick and suspicious math to subtract 42 quarter inch seams).

Creating the Coil

I am on the last part of the prep to make fabric bowls/baskets – and it is equally as tedious. I have to stitch cotton clothesline into the center of the 140+ feet of sewn strips to create the coil.

But first I had to decide what coordinating thread to use, so I put together some options:


I let TTQH select the thread (he likes to make design choices like that) since he did all that work to create the “Ball-o-Batiks” for me. Here is the thread he selected from the options above:


After winding coordinating bobbins (making a basket or bowl on the sewing machine used a lot of bobbin thread) I was ready to start making the coil on my sewing machine:


I set the ball of clothesline and the “Ball-o-Batiks” on the floor side to side as I work them together through the sewing machine:


Here is what I have finished so far, not very much but I plan to work on it at a leisurely pace:


2 feet down, 138 feet more to go…

I will share a photo of my progress in a future post.


In yesterday’s post, Oh Scrap!, I mentioned that I had moved the fabric scraps from their organization in color themed boxes to a large bag. Well after completing this process I also ended up re-arranging my tiny sewing room again and thought I would share a photo:


I’ve added this photo as an update to my page tierneycreates Studio Tour, where you can see a tour of my entire studio.

Although I could use the space for something else, I always try to find a way to keep my old futon chair (it coverts to a bed for a very small person) in my studio to always have a cozy place to sit and think (about my next studio reorganization project, ha!)

Oh Scrap!

Recently a couple of my blogging buddies, Mary at Zippy Quilts and Claire at knitNkwilt posted about starting projects from their fabric scrap piles and “fabric scrap wrangling” (organizing a crafter’s crazy scrap pile).

As fabric scraps are my secret (well..not so secret) obsession, I want to join the conversation!

Last time I posted about my fabric scrap organization, I shared this photo of my fabric scraps organized in windowed boxes by color:


Fabric scraps organized by color

Well this organization failed. Why? Because I was not using the scraps, I was just enjoying them as “decoration” in my studio!

I knew I needed to do something and rethought how I was create with scraps I realized it was too cumbersome to pull down individual boxes by color to access scraps (my studio is small and I could only pull down 1-2 boxes at a time without serious crowding!). So I did something crazy: I pulled all the scraps out of the boxes and put them into a bag:


Yes it is a giant bag! It measures 22″ in height and approximately 22″ in diameter…and it is packed (but not too tightly…just fairly tightly, ha!). I’ve named it “Giant-Bag-O-Scraps” and I love it!

In addition to moving the fabric scraps out of their boxes by color, I also thinned out my collection of “Challenge Bags” (see post Basket of Challenges) and moved many of the scraps from these bags into the Giant-Bag-O-Scraps. I narrowed by huge “Challenge Bag” collection down to this:



Note the random “tailor ham” in this area, hoping someday to be used to make a fabric cap…

I did keep one type of fabric scraps separate from the others – batik scraps. They have their own organization into three baskets under my cutting table: 1) light and medium-light colors; 2) medium-dark to dark colors; and 3) thin strips:


Note the red arrow – this is Mike the miniature schnauzer’s ball storage in my studio

The reason for this separation is I want to make some landscape quilts using batik strips. I recently bought a book on Landscape quilts that I will discuss in a future post (once I start an actual landscape quilt project).

During this entire “scrap wrangling” project I did pull out a lot of scraps to donate to our local Humane Society Thrift Store. The thrift store has a crafting section and packages of fabric scraps sell very quickly there (other weird people like me who are also obsessed I guess..). Check out my post from October 2016 – A “Humane” Way to Eliminate Fabric Scraps to see how I packed up a huge donation of fabric scraps during my purging in 2016. The packages of scraps shown in that post sold within a week at the thrift shop!

Although I am not seeking out any additional fabric scraps, currently I am embracing my fabric scrap obsession. I remind myself that my quilting studio area is “my playroom” and it is okay to go in there and just play with my scraps!


Happy MLK Day! When the political landscape feels challenging to me as a person of color and as a woman, I remember his words and I am re-inspired:



“Self-Help” From My Family

Curious title for this post, eh?

For the first several years of my tierneycreates blog I shared reviews and excerpts from an endless stream of audiobooks in the genre “self-help” or “self-improvement” (I was obsessed with this genre). This genre could also be called “personal motivation” and “personal growth”. (If you would like to read my reviews/discussions of some of these books, check out my blog post Category “Audiobooks and Podcasts“)

Recently my incredibly awesome younger brother, Raoul Davis, Jr., along with two colleagues, has published a book in this genre called Firestarters: How Innovators, Instigators, and Initiators Can Inspire You to Ignite Your Own Life (2018). 

2018-01-10_06-19-40_008 (2018-01-10T18_12_01.448).jpeg

Yes – one of my family members has written a “self-help” book!

I was so excited when I received a copy last week (I ordered it from amazon to support the sales of this book rather than try to get a free copy from my brother) in the mail.

Yes, I wish it was an audiobook, but I plan to actually sit and read the hard copy version book! The book is currently available on amazon.com in Kindle and paperback version.

Oh and not meaning to violate any copyright laws, here is a little snapshot of my brother’s wonderful “Acknowledgements” section in the book:


If you want to read a little more about our father, Raoul Davis, Sr., here is a blog post I did about him – Creative Inspiration: Stories My Father Told Me. Our parents have both passed but I am very lucky to have two amazing siblings!


I plan to return to blogging about my crafting adventures in the near future.

In case you do not follow my other blog, Improvisational Textiles: A Collaborative Art Quilting Journey, here are a couple recent posts on the Improvisational Textiles blog about my art quilts and my addition to the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture’s Ethnic Artist Roster:

Unique Blogger Award

The blogger Jaywalks (onwardigo.wordpress.com) graciously nominated me for the Unique Blogger Award.


Here is a link to his post (and you will see one of my favorite blogging buddies Brush of Dawn is also nominated): Very Mysterious Ice Cream

Here are the rules he posted on this particular blogging award nomination:

As per the rules of this award, I have to now ask all nominees three questions of my own. I will keep mine pretty similar to those above, and because I’m feeling a bit dull, I’ll keep it strictly business:

  • Which one word do you think best describes your blog?
  • Is there a post you’re particularly proud of and would like to reshare?
  • Have you any grand goals for your blog/practice this year?

And, of course, the spirit of the award means nominees should also go ahead and nominate thirteen others, ask questions of their own etc. etc. As usual, there is no obligation to do that, or anything at all because I have said so. Go your own way! But indeed, my thanks once more to Dernhelm, congratulations to all nominees, and big thanks to all for your patience! See you at the after-party, which I was told is down there somewhere…

My Answers

  1. Which one word do you think best describes your blog? RANDOM
  2. Is there a post you’re particularly proud of and would like to reshare? CREATIVE INSPIRATION: STORIES MY FATHER TOLD ME (RE-POST)
  3. Have you any grand goals for your blog/practice this year? MAKE A LOT OF STUFF AND WRITE ABOUT IT!

My Nominations

Completely optional to participate – here are 13 blogs I am nominating:

  1. Andra Gayle – Alive and Piecing (a new blog I follow as I just love the name of the blog!)

I follow many wonderful blogs and I randomly nominated names of blogs that came up in my WordPress Reader this evening. I think all the blogs I follow are unique and wonderful 🙂

My Rules

A year or so ago there were a lot of these award nominations floating around my regular group of blogging buddies, and I completely understand if you got burned out and do not want to participate in this award nomination.

But if you are one of the 13 above and want to participate, I have borrowed three random and unique questions from the website CONVERSATION STARTERS WORLD for you to answer in your blog post about the award:

  1. What mythical creature would improve the world most if it existed?
  2. What would be the coolest animal to scale up to the size of a horse?
  3. What ridiculous and untrue, yet slightly plausible, theories can you come up with for the cause of common ailments like headaches or cavities?

Now that I have scared you all off from participating…

Feel free to nominate as many blogs as you like or just have fun answering the questions and do not bother nominating anyone.

Everyone, nominated or not is welcome to share their answers to these questions in the Comment section just for fun!


image credit: tklinker, free images.com


Basket of Love

I wanted to share a follow up to my previous post (Dec 30) “Throwing Pottery” on the Sewing Machine.

There are additional details on the fabric basket I recently “threw” on my sewing machine: It was part of a wedding gift for a dear friend. Now that my friend has received her gift I can share the additional photos/story!

What began as this –


Became this once five (5) little scrappy batik heart pillows were added to make it the tierneycreates Basket of Love:


My friend has a modified “Brady Bunch” situation going on. When she wed her wonderful finance they joined their families and became a blended family of five.

So I made each family member a little scrappy fabric heart and on the back of each heart I added a pocket so they could use the hearts to share little notes of love and appreciation to each other.


For fun I even made up five generic “sample love notes” and placed them in the pocket of each heart.

Working on this piece and sewing in general was a nice bit of healing for me as I deal with the grief of the recent loss of my beloved mother-in-law and the loss of my Sassy the Highly Opinionated Miniature Schnauzer. As you all probably know, grief comes in waves and it seems better to be sewing than just sitting around when one of these waves hits.

My friend and her fiancé are wonderful loving parents and I know their joined family and new home is likely filled with lots of love, but it made me very happy to make a gift that does more than celebrates their marriage – it celebrates their new family!


We had a couple days of warmth (up to 61 degrees F) in Central Oregon but now a deep chill has set in. Not as bad as parts of the US where a terrible Arctic freeze/chill is leading to record lows, so I will not complain.

We have quite a bit of “hoar frost” in Central Oregon. Every time I hear the words “hoar frost” I laugh to myself. I remember when I first moved to the Pacific NW in the late 1990s and heard the term “hoar frost” for the first time. I thought my friend was saying something else completely in regards to the frost (hint: sounds like wh___). And I thought: “Wow, in the Pacific NW they really hate frost!”

In case you have not heard of “hoar frost” before, according to the Google dictionary it is:

a grayish-white crystalline deposit of frozen water vapor formed in clear still weather on vegetation, fences, etc.

Here is a tree loaded with hoar frost from my morning walk:


I want to close this post by mentioning how much I have enjoyed reading “end-of-year” summaries by my blogging buddies. I might write up one myself when I feel ready.

Hope you all are having a Happy New Year so far!