Monday, October 09, 2017

The Universal Language of Quilting!

Imagine that you were quilting in a room where everyone spoke a different language, and no one understood each other.

I bet it wouldn’t take long until our love of fabric, design, needle, thread, machines, tools and gadgets became a way to communicate with one another.

Now imagine yourself in a seeing, yet un-hearing world.  And creativity is burgeoning and overflowing!  And there IS a common language – sign language!

The smiles and laughter welcome you.  The beautiful communication of sign language takes over as machines are set up, plugged in and made ready – fabric is pressed and cut in great anticipation –

Hands are flying in greeting as neighbor meets neighbor and quilters who haven’t seen each other since last retreat catch up from across the room with a wave.

Xina Crawford and her friends recently celebrated the 10th Anniversary of  Deaf Quilt Retreats in September 2017 in Pennsylvania. 


Left to right: 
Natalie Beckman (NJ), Mary Beth Heller (VA), Debra DaSilva (MD), Susan Hanrahan (MD), Xina Crawford (AL).

“52 Deaf Quilters were in attendance.  Seven of us made Bonnie's En Provence quilt this year (2 not pictured).  We all look forward to Bonnie's new Mystery! 
And we may have recruited more to join us!  :)”
This story just warms my heart!  And the quilts are SO gorgeous.

Xina also took a bunch of Essential Triangle Tools with her so she could demo all that it can do to the ladies in attendance.  Way to spread the love, Xina!

If you are interested in attending a quilt retreat especially for deaf quilters, please contact one of the many deaf quilter groups on Facebook, there may be a group that hosts retreats near you.


This happened yesterday.

I needed more hexies cut for the 3 remaining sides of the eternal hexie project.  My variety was severely lacking and to continue, I was going to need to cut more to mix in to what I’ve already got.

Out came my beloved bin of scraps from Jo Morton.  Remember when this box was found on my doorstep from Jo herself?  I’m still pulling from it, and a lot of the contents of this special scrap box have gone into this hexie quilt.  

I just LOVE these yummy browns, they are so timeless!


Measuring the new border start against the one completed side.

Baby, you’ve got a long long way to go!

I took this picture so I could refer back to how the hexies turn the corner.  I also took a hexie count so I know how many to make for the opposite side.

I am ready for this New York trip.  Some of yesterday’s fiddle-jobs included cleaning out my purse, my busy bag, my suitcase and slimming down.

I packed away the summer attire and pulled out some fall items.

I packed a ran jacket because it is supposed to be wet today –and I put an umbrella in the zipper pocket of the quilt duffels.  A girl has got to be prepared!

I packed up those cut-out and kitted-up Rolling Stone blocks that have not been touched since the string snowball got placed on the front burner and I’ll be working on those with loaner machines this trip.  These also MUST be finished! 

I haven’t touched this since JUNE!

I last showed this photo stitching at Irene’s during my time teaching near Louisville, Kentucky.  Remember my post about visiting her shop, The Cozy Quilter? Refresh your memory HERE.

This little sweet Singer 99 was adopted out during that trip, and the blocks packed up and put away while I turned the ones I had sewn up “WRONG” (Or should I just say different?)  in to the baby quilt I made for my nephew-to-be who should be making his debut any week now.  

And then life got crazy.

I’m looking forward to working on these this week in between workshops and lectures.

Trimming half-square triangles before pressing!

Before I go - I wanted to let you know that another batch of Triangle Booty rulers have arrived and are available in the Quiltville Store!

I shared this nifty gadget HERE.

You can even use it this way with bias strips cut from layer cake 10'' squares! More info HERE.

This is the last batch I'll be able to get out before our trip to China, the next shipment will be available around Halloween when I return.

I have also added more Quiltville Eco-Pouch sets!

Update on the Sharon Hultgren Center Square Rulers:  I talked about this during Quilt-Cam the other night, but Sharon sent an email apologizing - what she thought were 2 more case of rulers turned out to be 2 cases of books.  She is still on the look out, and will let us know if she finds more.

So I appreciate your patience while we continue to wait on that item.  If she finds more she will let me know and I will let you know, just keep following the blog and my instagram or facebook and you'll know when I know.


Quiltville Quote of the Day!

And language is much more than sounds we here.  It is reflected in everything we do.  Every action is a communication.

Have a wonderful Monday, everyone!

I’m off to New York!


  1. Gee, I saw the "other" comments this morning and thought how strange (ugh). I just love those rolling stone blocks and when the pattern comes out I know I have enough black, red, and white to use. Have a safe trip to New York and I hope the colors are popping for the colorful person I know.

  2. I love Jo Morton fabrics too! Enjoyed seeing the photo of all the beautiful mystery quilts (and quilters!)

  3. These gals are great! ;)

  4. I worked with deaf/hard of hearing people for over 40years. I always loved watching sign language to music. Talk about beautiful. Took my breath away every single time. In all those years, I only came upon one or 2 deaf quilters☹️. I would have dearly loved to have shared my passion with those individuals.

    Enjoy your trip to New York. Hope the colors put on a show just for you. Thanks for all the things you do for the quilting world. Hugs.


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