Monday, September 14, 2015


Now now, don't get too excited. I'm referring to the beautiful book Sacred Threads has published which includes all the quilts in this year's exhibit. Still, this is the first time I've been included, or rather my quilts, in any kind of book. And I do know artists who choose exhibits to enter based on whether or not they publish an exhibit catalog. It's something they want to be able to put on their resume. Me - not so much. But it's still a thrill.

And I couldn't be more pleased. Look! There's Bubble Prayers featured on the leading page to the section on Grief.

And my quilts are the first one's in that section. It takes away some of my disappointment in not being included in the traveling exhibit. The layout is pleasing and the photos I supplied printed true to color and in focus. I was really sweating that.  It tells me I can trust I'm seeing the rest of the quilts in this book just as they were in the exhibit. And at over 300 pages, I have hours of enjoyment ahead of me as I take in the variety of expressions and read their accompanying stories. If you are interested in purchasing your own copy, just follow this link.

I also sprung for a thumbdrive of the audio tour - why not? I'd recorded a little extra myself and am curious to hear the other artists' voices and the additional things they wanted to share. However, I was really puzzled when I pulled what looked like a credit or gift card from the box. Wondering if my lack of smart phone would mean I'd have no way to play it. I certainly couldn't think of anything I had on hand that might work.

It took me forever to realize that the little black rectangle on the back actually rotates out to be inserted into an SD card drive. Whew! I'm not as technically out of it as I thought.

Thank you letter & picture of antique quilt on my repro version

Although this is my first time to be published in a book, I have been published in a magazine a long time ago. This was back when I was making traditional and repro quilts and collecting antique ones. I was commissioned to make a copy of an antique Forbidden Fruit Tree quilt for an historic building in Wisconsin. Their budget only covered materials; good cause or not, I was not willing to donate all of my time for such a labor-intensive project. It was with great reluctance that the owner of the quilt with whom I was negotiating agreed to let me have the antique quilt as partial payment. Its value was not equal to my labor costs but it meant a great deal to me to add it to my collection. And my name and info about the reproduction got posted along with the quilt.

This really was a major undertaking, figuring out how the original quilt was constructed and making my own pattern sized to their specifications. The block itself is a complicated one and it was a challenge to convert the hand quilted design to machine quilting. I wanted to share all this so I submitted pictures and my story to Traditional Quiltworks magazine, thinking it might make it into the Letters from Readers section. Instead, they wanted to feature it and me along with a pattern. I'm still pretty pleased and proud about that. Look! The antique quilt made it on the cover.

And look again! Both antique and reproduction are shown with the pattern (you better believe it's a three thimble difficulty rating) and a small photo of me! My 15 minutes of fame... Click on the pic and any others for a larger view.

You can't see it in these photos, but looking at this diagram from the magazine pattern instructions, I am reminded of one of the things that made me want to own this quilt and that made reproducing it a challenge: as the magazine states "an extraordinary setting." I'm so happy that this antique quilt also got its 15 minutes of fame. Wonder how many quilters actually gave this a go or at least made a single block as those brave enough to sign up for my class did? It makes a lovely pillow cover - one I still get out each Christmas.

Thanks for suffering through my sharing of my several experiences of 15 minutes of fame. How about you? What brief rise to prominence have you had in you quilting career that makes you beam with pride?


Sherrie Spangler said...

Yay, congratulations!

Fran├žoise said...


Living to work - working to live said...

I've been in a couple of catalogues and it's fabulous, isn't it? But I've never been in a magazine. And that quilt looks very impressive.

The Inside Stori said...

That’s a lot of accomplishments…..yes, you should be proud…..congratulations. It’s wonderful that others can enjoy your work!!

Lucia Sasaki said...

Hi Sheila, thanks so much for sharing your achievements!
I felt very conforted that your Bubble prayers quilt was chosen to appear in the catalogue: i remember when you made it in homage to Judy.
It is bittersweet, I think, but I reminds me 2 Corinthians 1:3-5.
And I liked your Forbidden Fruit block reprodution, it is a very beautiful one.
Well, I had my 15 minutes of fame, no with quilts, but in a Librarians Seminar in 2012, when I and 2 coworkers made a presentation of our experience with reading and mental health workshops. It was glorious!
Thanks for sharing!!

Amanda said...

Beaming with pride for you to! All wonderful.

The Idaho Beauty said...

Thank you, everyone, for your kind comments and support! And thanks to those who shared there own bit of fame - congrats to you too!

Hilary, there's a permanence to books and catalogs, don't you think, that may make being included in one so special. The magazine was thrilling but it's not even in publication anymore, a copy of it probably difficult to track down these many years later. Still, perhaps someone who knows me or even a relative might run across a copy and be pleasantly surprised to see me there. And my, did I feel the celebrity when one of my students shyly asked me to autograph her copy!

Lucia, it is indeed glorious these moments of broader sharing. And thank you for sharing that beautiful Bible passage. I am humbled that a creation of mine borne of personal experience would make you think of it.

But as my late husband would be saying to me about now were he still here - yeah, but what have you done lately? Enough time resting on my laurels - onward!