The Christmas season has always implied family, traditions and memories. I can recall the best two best gifts ever left under the tree: my Barbie light box and Barbie dream house - of course, two different years! Now those gifts from Santa are old and dusty and not that pertinent to my life today.

I barely remember my Grandma Sladky - except a snapshot memory of sitting with her in her blue-and-white bedroom on the shore of Rowley's Bay, Door County, WI. In this room was a white book case with three music boxes from Germany. My favorite was this adorable rotating wooden mushroom, with elves taking a break from the season's work while swinging in circles. Grandma would let me carefully wind and enjoy the music from this box.  Every year when it is time to trim the tree, light the candles and enjoy the advent calender, you can be sure that the first piece I display is Grandma's music box. Such a sweet memory decades later, which helps me keep in mind my past and the people from which I came.


I didn’t grow up in a tropical environment. I grew up in North Texas, where Christmas can be sunny and warm or it can be icy and cold, depending on how far Jack Frost has decided to travel for Christmas. The magic of a “White Christmas” was something that we would dream about and hope for in the week or two before the big day. Only a few times in my childhood did we have snow on Christmas day but when we did, it was a real treat!

Now I live in Colorado, where there is a far better chance of a snowy white Christmas, but still it’s never assured. When I think of images that represent Christmas, I think of candlelight Christmas services, decorated trees, the bright faces of children waiting for Santa Claus. I think of the decorations on Main Street and the houses in the neighborhoods bedecked with festive lights. Even so, I chose this photo to share. I took it about three years ago. It’s the barn across the street from our house in La Veta. To me it represents peace, family, friendship, and of course…. the hope for a White Christmas.

The next time you gasp as the price of all metal scissors, think about the years of training, skill, and craftsmanship it takes to make a pair.  Meet Eric, one of the last remaining scissors makers in Sheffield, England.  Eric began making scissors in 1958.  At one time there were hundreds of factories employing 40,000 workers.  Today there are less than a dozen craftsmen working to keep this ancient tradition alive.
To visit their website: http://www.ernestwright.co.uk/


There is a reason we call them Legends.  Whether they inspired you to begin quilting, changed the directions of your quilting, or improved your skills, each and every one of these pioneers has had a profound effect on this craft we call quilting. See some of the world's quilting leaders and what makes them so remarkable.


Jinny Beyer (Episode 313) changed the way we looked at color, pattern and texture when it comes to fabric. 


Photo by Gregory Case Photography

Libby Lehman (Episode 513) changed the way we view our sewing machine.  It is a marvelous piece of machinery that can take your stitching to a whole new level. 


Photo by Gregory Case Photography

Yvonne Porcella (Episode 713) showed us the joy in free-form piecing filled with a riot of colorful fabrics.  Whether it be a garment or a quilt, her work is always fun and a joy to behold. 

Eleanor Burns (Episode 913) taught you that quilt making could be fun, fast, and something you could be proud of. 

Photo by Gregory Case Photography

Meredith and Bill Schroeder (Episode 1113) built a museum to educate the world in the fact that quilts are a truely an art form and not just a bed covering.


Photo by Gregory Case Photography

Painter turned quilter, Michael James, (Episode 1313) turned the quilting world on its ear with radical design and color concepts.



TQS is delighted to share you with some spectacular quilts from the Pour l'Amour du Fil 2014 exhibition held in Nantes - France.  Thank you to Quiltmania magazine for sharing the images.

Click here to see a program from the show.

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow



Ever wonder what goes on at Awards Night in Houston?  Watch John Flynn before he hands out the awards for Merit Quilting, Hand.  It's amazing the things you learn about some people.



Marsala, like the wine. Do you like this color?


(courtesy Morton Arboretum)

This holiday season, get the family away from the electronics and spend some quality time doing things together.  Here are a few activities that you could do to create great memories.  Check your local area for more ideas!

Lights and Illumination Shows:

See the light show at the Franklin Square Holiday Festival & Electrical Spectacle Holiday Light Show  in Philidelphia, PA

See fabulous illumination at the Morton Arboretum

Check out Christmas traditions around the world at Chicago's  Museum of Science and Industry

Kids can make their own lantern in a workshop before before spending a magical evening with the zoos residents.  Lantern Magic, Chester Zoo, Cheshire, UK

Get in touch with nature by walking among Scotland's only Free-Range Reindeer herd.  Cairngorm Reindeer, Aviemore, Scotland.

Ice Skating:

Rothman Ice Rink at Dilworth Park, Philadelphia, PA
Panther Island Ice, Fort Worth, TX
Somerset House, Central London

Window Displays:

Take the family out one night to view the spectacular holiday window displays of Galaries Lafayette and Printemps along the Boulevard Hausmann, Paris, France

See the spectacular window display and animated film festival at Harrod's Department Store, London.

Check out the window displays at New York City's most notable department stores.



Motion is the latest exhibit at the National Quilt Museum in Paducah.  It was created by the Contemporary QuiltArt Association who will be celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2016.  Their interpretation of Motion is a presentation of quilts by 33 of their members.

From the museum:

Motion is a key concept in design. By combining elements such as line, shape, and texture that make the eye move over the work, an artist can convey motion. Movement can be suggested visually through repetition, directional lines, placement of objects, diagonal lines, and gestural lines. A symbolic representation of movement can create an exciting abstract composition.

More information about Motion from the Contemporary QuiltArt Association, may be found here.

The exhibit runs from November 21, 2014 - February 23, 2015.


"Go Tell It at the Quilt Show!" is a Quilt Alliance project designed to capture the stories of quilts where quiltmakers gather.  The interviews are created with  "one quilt, one person,  one video camera, and three minutes of time." Flora Joy was interviewed during the 2014 International Quilt Festival in Houston about her quilt, Frame of Mind.

The Quilt Alliance filmed over 100 stories in Houston this year, keep an eye out for more.

Top 10 Reasons to Join the Quilt Show!

(Click on the box next to the YouTube logo to enlarge the screen.)

Learn about
Apliquick appliqué tools!

Watch Show 1912
with Rosa Rojas (free!)

Apliquick Rods


Apliquick - 3 Holes Microserrated Scissors


Apliquick Ergonomic Tweezers