Thursday, March 14, 2013

Back from the Races!

It feels a little like race day around here. Or maybe end-of-the-race day.

I have been working on and talking about the newest ScrapTherapy book forever, or so it seems! And just yesterday, the first copy of the book, ScrapTherapy, Scraps Plus One! arrived at my studio from the publisher!


That means that the new book will start showing up in your favorite places to shop for books very, very soon! Ask for it at your favorite shop, order it here, or you can even download an eBook directly from the Taunton Store.

Yippee! Skippee!

Speaking of Races . . .
Last week, I mentioned that I was headed to Oh Susannah's Upstairs Inn in Watkins Glen, NY for a long weekend - three and one-half days of nearly non-stop sewing. This week, I'm here to tell you I survived the weekend with my quilty girlfriends, and I even got a few things done.

I'll let the pictures tell the rest of the story.

First we had to pack. It can get pretty tricky when six women have to load up sewing machines, projects, food (we didn't want to starve), and clothing for a long weekend. But we did it. My CRV is loaded and ready to roll. By the way, this was just enogh space for two of us. Beth and myself. (Good grief!)

Oh, Susannah's and the Upstairs Inn was our destination. Our cozy accommodations are just one flight of stairs above the shop.

Tempting daily visits with Sue Knapp our 'landlady' for the weekend, kept our fabric and supplies from getting too thin *a-hem!*

Once we were settled in, it didn't take long for projects to emerge. Color. Variety. Fun!

Beth brought this doll, a gift to a refugee family from Somalia. But the doll needed some new outfits - like this coat made from a little girl's coat at the second hand store. This little doll is stylin'!

These blocks represent two different projects, one more contemporary, one more traditional.

Color, one row at a time. . .

More color. . . threads and fabric squares waiting their turn

I pulled out some fabric leftovers and made a few quilts for the local hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

Ooops! A decision point: Change the thread. Don't change the thread. Go shopping and decide later. . . .

With all the sewing going on, a quilter is bound to get hungry. Fortunately we left some space in the car to bring some snacks.

 . . . and breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The Inn has a small kitchen, complete with all the necessities to eat-in.

And the town! Watkins Glen is a charming community, the inn is steps away from the village located at the very southern tip of Seneca Lake, one of New York's Finger Lakes. Nearby wineries offer some fabulous selections.

Right around the corner, you can find some really yummy yarns. (Yup, I got some!)

A few steps further, and Seneca Lake greets you.

These boats won't be in dry-dock much longer. With the sky so blue, sailing weather is on the way.

I like this one! Do you suppose they know any quilters?

I think this seagull was hoping for a snack. This is a male seagull (identified with 50% accuracy *wink!*)

Watkins Glen's claim to fame is Formula One racing. The Watkins Glen Grand Prix. Reminders of the racing spirit are evident at every step - literally!
Painted race cars on the sidewalks. . .

. . . Winners' names embedded in the concrete . . .

. . . and murals on the buildings.

Any quilt get-away isn't complete without the fellowship of good friends, shared recipes and sewing tips, and lots and lots of laughs.



Beth and Melonie


Smurfette. . . Huh? Looks like we had an extra guest. At least she's learning to sew!

Our goals were ambitious for the weekend. I think we each brought more projects than we had time to complete. But that doesn't matter. Reaching the checkered flag wasn't a goal for each and every project stuffed into our vehicles.

The real trophy is in the memories.

Happy stitching. . .and racing!


  1. In your Wild Salmon Run Quilt patern you mention in your first quilt block description a term in the block "UNUSED" can you explain what this means as I do not find a feference to the term anywhere in your book, but I may have missed it. my email address in

  2. The premise for the book is that you have cut your scrap fabrics into 2", 3-1/2" and 5" scrap squares and then use those cut up scraps in the projects. In the case of Wild Salmon Run, the scrap squares are cut into strips used for the quilt. While I tried to keep any waste minimal, sometimes there was a little piece that isn't needed for the project or isn't large enough to go back into the sorted scraps, so it's "unused" in this project. However those too-small pieces may be used to stuff pincushions or to make miniature quilts, if that is something you like to do.