Friday, March 11, 2022

The Making of Mabel Mae - DNA Results!

I woke up this morning to an email notification that Mabel Mae's DNA results are IN!

If you had preconceived notions (as I did) you just may be a bit surprised - and delighted!

I have loved relating the story about how she came to live with us.  

"She spent 45 minutes in the slammer before I paid her bail and brought her home!"

She had been surrendered about 45 minutes before I arrived at the shelter in search of a "sister" for Zoey Jo and the reason was plain to see on her paperwork. 

"Chases Cows" it read.

Chasing cows is not a problem. There are no cows near us on the mountain.  There are, however, squirrels, chipmunks, deer, skunk, coyotes, and bears....oh my!

The paperwork only stated breed as Australian Shepherd / Labrador Retriever mix.

But what else could be in this wonderful mix that makes Mabel Mabel?

Drum roll, please....

What a crazy mix!!

And for those who thought Catahoula - not one lick.  She does have 21% mixed hound, and it is the BASSET that kills me - because this girl has very long legs.  LOL.

The herding breeds take the lead with the hound dogs coming in second place followed by the labrador retriever which we thought would be front and center.

1% Cocker? LOL!

And what's with the 4% Chow?

What a wonderful mix you are, Mabel Mae!

This has us thinking we NEED to do Zoey's as well.  But I admit, I've been quite pleased to tell folks she is Australian Kelpie - she looks it, she acts it - but could she be hiding interesting secrets as well?

As in - is there some kind of weirdo acrobatic dog breed that makes her go butt-up all the time?

Gail's Quilt Buddies are in the house!

This is their first visit and I'm so happy to have them here.  They've settled in.  They are making great progress on things - they are cooking yummy meals.

And it's a good thing we have some Minnesotans in our midst because we are headed for a snow event in the wee small hours of tomorrow morning.

Carolina Crossroads from Scraps & Shirttails is on the design wall and growing rapidly!

This gorgeous top finish!


Color My World by Wendy Williams. 2021 BOM at thequiltshow.com

 I do know that two of the corner buildings were designed by the maker to personalize the quilt a bit more.  It's wonderful!

Baby shower quilt finish!

And more to come!

I made more progress on my Hearts 0f Hope Sew-Along quilt yesterday, and I can happily say that the center is together (After making 2 more blocks - I had miscounted!) and I figured out what I need to do to make the math work with the border ideas that are swimming in my head.

This is where the Scrap User's System comes in so handy - I can pull the blues and yellows in the strip widths I need and instantly go to the sewing machine.  If I started with fat quarters and un-cut scraps it would have taken a lot longer to get the variety I need cut down to size.

Sneak Peek!

To recap:

There is no pattern available ahead of time. (I'm still making the quilt, remember? Quilt first, pattern LAST.)

I am running this much like we did our Unity Quilt Sew-Along we did 2 years ago when Covid locked us down.

The introductory post will go live next Friday, 3/18/2022 and will include yardage requirements, helpful tools and other much needed info.

This is a sew-along and I will be releasing parts each Friday here on the blog starting with part one on 3/25/22 until we are done. At this time it looks like we will be doing this over 4 parts.

You will need to save the PDFs from each week as I release them. They will only be available for a limited time as our other mysteries.

Those of you who have done previous mysteries with me will have your Essential Triangle Tool and Simple Folded Corners or Simple Folded Corners Mini rulers on hand.

I have plenty in stock if you want to order them now, and they will be listed on the Introductory post.

I will also include traditional rotary cutting directions for each part so you can get by without the helpful tools if you want to go old school.

Lola wants you to know that it isn't too soon to start pulling your blues and yellows for your string piecing.  They can be anywhere from 3/4'' up to 2'' in width.

String strips don't have to be perfectly straight, and it's better if they are NOT uniform. We want things to taper and lean a bit, that's what makes string piecing so fun.

The sample blocks I have shown here and in previous posts will give you a good idea of the variety I am using.

More info to come in my introductory post on the 18th.  You can find more info under the Hearts 0f Hope Sew-Along tab at the top of the blog.

Especially from Urban Threads for embroidery machine users and may be great for your quilt labels:

Like many of you, we're watching the events unfolding in Ukraine with deep sadness. We here at Urban Threads, along with our sister brands Embroidery Library and Craft Genesis, support the Ukrainian people. We've heard your requests for a design to show your support, and we're happy to bring you this new Love for Ukraine design for free.

This design is available in four sizes (6.76" x 5.86, 5.59" x 4.85", 3.88" x 3.39", and 2.52" x 2.20"). It can be stitched as shown above, or you can stop after two color changes for less shading and quicker sewing. Under our licensing policy, as with all Urban Threads designs, you're welcome to stitch this design as many times as you like. Stitch it for yourself, for loved ones, or for fundraisers.

Urban Threads - Shop New Collection

P.S. If you use a Cricut, Silhouette, or other cutting machine, visit our sister brand Craft Genesis to download a similar free cutting machine design!

(Click the photo to donate.)


As of this morning, you have helped raise over $14,000 toward our goal of $50,000!

Every little bit is helping.  ALL of this will be going directly to Together Rising in their continued efforts to provide real support - boots on the ground support - for the people of Ukraine.

Gudrun is hosting a HOPE Sew-along using her HOPE pattern.  Many of you will already have this pattern from a previous fundraising sew-along she hosted, but for those who don't have it - ALL proceeds for both printed and digital patterns and the Hope for Ukraine fabric bundles are going to be donated to Together Rising through our joint GoFundMe, Quilters For Ukraine.

The Hope for Ukraine Mini Mystery Stash Builder Bundles are 6 half yards of blue and yellow fabric. This is 3 yards of high quality quilt shop fabric for $30. The Stash Builder Bundles are currently listed as a preorder while we await restock. Our original inventory sold out in 10 minutes on Friday thanks to you awesome people! Fabric is on it's way, as I type.

We are doing this jointly, because we are stronger and can make a bigger impact when we work TOGETHER.

Of course you don't have to purchase anything to have your donation count.  Just donate whatever you are able from your heart.

Today I'll be spending the day working on the outer border for our Hearts 0f Hope Sew-Along

I'm excited to see it together, and will be sharing the full quilt on the 18th with our introduction post so you'll see what we'll be making.

I'll be spending time with Gail's Quilt Buddies.

What's up for your Friday ahead?

Quiltville Quote of the Day -

Nothing will ever change if we keep focusing on our problems.
Look for brand new opportunities, they are around every corner!
Vintage trip around the world quilt found in Louisville, Kentucky.

Have a wonderful Friday, friends!



  1. You are such a great photographer... love the photo of Miss Lola in the yellow bin!

  2. THE circular quilt is Color My World by Wendy Williams. 2021 BOM at thequiltshow.com.

  3. Mable Mae is 100% neighborhood mix----and 100% lovable.

  4. My grandparents always told me that just a little bit of chow in a dog makes them great companions.

  5. i can really see the labrador in mabel, especially in the picture today. probably where the long legs come in. lola looks so good in yellow. thanks for all you do for us. patti in florida

  6. My sciatica seems a bit better today. I haven't been able to sit at a sewing machine since January. I'm going to see if I can do that a bit today and start pulling yellow and blue fabric from my scraps and see if I can cover a few phone book pages to get a head start on the Ukrainian quilt.

  7. Isn't it fun to learn the secrets of pets' DNA? We just had a similar experience with our rescue. We were told he was a Catahoula mix -- and he is exactly 0% Catahoula! He turned out to be mainly beagle, with Boston and Jack Russell terriers thrown in. And he looks nothing like any of those breeds! I love how Mabel Mae has fit right into your pack! Happy Friday!

  8. Whatever Miss Mabel's makeup, it's neat how she and Zoey are so well matched in size and build. Perfect wrestling and running buddies. It's really sweet how quickly they became inseparable.

  9. Mable Mae is so beautiful!! It is always so fun and surprising to see what a dog DNA test reveals. Our dog, Joey, looks 100% Golden Retriever and looks nothing like his black and white mom. DNA testing revealed that dad's side is 100% Golden, mom's side is a Heinz 57 mix of breeds including Husky, Chow, Chihuahua, Australian Shepherd, and Japanese Chin to name a few. He does have black spots on his tongue and a full curl tail, both probably due to the Chow and he is 20 pounds smaller than the average male Golden Retriever which is probably due to the Chihuahua. His brother, who lives across the street from us, is black and looks like a Newfoundland. We wonder if maybe the litter had two dads. But no matter what his DNA says he is, Joey is the sweetest dog we have had and we are so thankful we have him!

  10. Oh Lola you are so sweet <3 I think I will start combing the stash for blues and yellows while in the quilt room this afternoon .. hope the new retreaters have a great day ..

  11. What a fun Mix, Lot's of Cattle Dog in her. I liked the Cocker Spaniel my brother snuck home from school. She had a curly puppy that I got to name; Curly. Sad she didn't get to stay at our house long. my dad wasn't fond pf the Poop on the lawn. He gave her to my Uncle on his farm. Happy Friday, stay warm inside stitching..

  12. Mabel Mae seems to be such a sweetheart! My father would have called her breed a Heinz- 57 varieties.

  13. That border collie is a big part of the herding thing. One of our girls is part border collie.

    As for the butt up for Zoey, we have 2 that do that. One is part corgi ( along with lab and border collie), the other is Italian greyhound and papillion mix.

  14. Believe it or not, I found the diections for the garlic knot blocks that have been languishing since 2019, 20, 21, and now that it's 2022, I think it's time to make enough to at least make a baby quilt, so I just spent the morning making up more garlic knot kits. Everything goes with red!

  15. Mabel is 100% LOVED!!

  16. Mabel has such beautiful eyes! How cool that you can DNA test dogs. May she have a long and happy life with you.

  17. We want to do the DNA on our rescue, what one did you use? We THINK she is either miniature Italian Greyhound or Whippet. We were told part Chihuahua, but they didn't know what else. Like Zoe she is a contortionist.

  18. I am surprised no Catahula, but didn't even think of Aussie. A good mix, I think. Mutts are best!

  19. She is a beautiful girl. It is so much fun to see what breeds she actually is compared to what she looks like and acts like. The Australian cattle dog is sometimes called a blue heeler because they can be blue. A Kelpie is actually a completely different breed. I love quilts and dogs so this is the perfect blog!

  20. What a sweet face on Mabel Mae in the top photo. I read the genetics a little differently, Mainly lab, border collie and beagle with a very well mixed mutt in there. I wonder if a "purebred" also comes out with mixed heritage. Any way you got such a happy trio of pals with Ivy, Mabel and Zoey. So nice they all get along so well.

  21. I wish I had a Mabel Mae, she is just beautiful and so sweet 🥲

  22. Mabel is an AKC Muttenhead. The best breed of dog. Love your animal family. ❤

  23. I think Mabel Mae is what's called a Heinz 57! She's adorable!

  24. She's a beauty! Do we know which company was used to determine her breed /s? I'd like to find out what combination of breeds are involved in my dog.

  25. 41% herding breeds, the BEST in my not so humble opinion. I have always thought the herders best to live with because they want to bring stuff to you,

  26. I recently lost my 12-year-old black lab (rescue dog). I'm too old to start over with another dog so I'm going to "adopt" Mable through your blog. Thank you for sharing. You take such wonderful pictures and they warm my heart.

  27. My guess about Zoie standing on her head is a learned response from your laughter when she does it. Positive reinforcement at work there.

  28. I want to get in touch with the maker of Color My World to feature her quilt. If anyone knows who she is I would like to know.


If you are commenting as "anonymous" please leave your name at the end of your comment.

Did you know that ad space on this blog provides for all of the free patterns and free mysteries and challenges at no cost to you? Without ads, this blog would not be possible.

Thank you for understanding the many hours that go into this blog 6 days a week, 52 weeks a year. :)