Have you ever wondered what a production meeting really looks like? Well, here's a glimpse. One of the new rules this time is that anyone with negative comments (outside of production assistance) cost the offender a dollar.



There are some beautiful quilts showing up in the gallery.  Click on "Gallery" on the purple bar.  Take the time to send an encouraging email to your fellow quilters.



It's 6:30 am in La Veta.  Taping begins today.  Our first guest is JF.  Fall is in the air and the Spanish Peaks were dusted with snow last night when the thunderstorm came in.  It's beautiful this morning, but wear a sweater outside.  One last duty is to hang the quilts for the first show.

I noticed in the C&T ad they have a DVD by Judith Baker Montano.  Judith lives in La Veta and is a wonderful artist and a Crazy Quilt Specialist. Check out her DVD and see her show in Episode 201.


The dates in the newsletter relating to the upcoming slideshow and show with Kim Deneault were incorrect.  Here are the corrected dates:

Slideshows will begin Saturday, September 6, 2008.

The show will premiere Monday, September 15, 2008.

We apologize for the confusion (and are pleased to find that so many of you read the newsletter).



The setup for the taping has begun.  Brian Day and the crew from Daylight Productions are bringing in the equipment and installing it in the Tims Retreat Center.  It is like old home week.  We love these guys and they go out of their way to make our show a special event.  Angel (Producer), Beverly (Producer), Celia ( producer) Bruce (director) have had their first meeting this morning at breakfast. I (Capt'n John) directed some tourists to a local diner--oh my gosh, I'm a local!

Stay tuned for the fun.



Designing a pattern is not as easy as one might think. Here's why.

First, you should create something that is representative of your style. While my 'rhapsody' style is becoming popular due to my book, my 'rhapsody album' style is something that is new - although related in some respects. The 'rhapsody album' includes blocks that are designed on a diagonal - generally with applique - and set in such a way to create a medallion style effect - see Episode 304. The only quilt I have designed that has been published is Reverie Rhapsody Album. So, there is most likely to be a short series of quilts utilzing that formula. This quilt is in that style - a quilt made from blocks. As a designer, it is important to establish a style - and that's not that easy to begin with. Mi Cabina is one of the easiest and funnest quilts to make that I've ever designed, but because it does not 'look like Ricky', it has been a slow seller. In addition, if the quilt is too complicated it scares folks away - so it has to be manageable - know what I mean? So these are the things that one juggles when designing for publication.

In preparing for Series 4 tapings, I had the new Rhapsody Album quilt (seen above) on the design wall, but not sewn together. I had to move on to preparations for a Rhapsody quilt I will be showing in Series 4 - so I just started creating the new quilt on top of the quilt that was on the design wall (seen below). Suddenly, serendipity showed up and the center of this new rhapsody seemed to beg to be included in the Rhapsody Album quilt. So - I'll leave it up to you. Do you think the new center is should stay or go? Has it gotten too complicated or is it just enough extra to increase the challenge, but not run the consumer off?

Also, help me name the quilt and the winner will get a comp pattern with it is released.






It is less than 48 hours until we tape the first show in Series 4. The production crew is arriving in Colorado and curently en route to La Veta. Skippy has been living in La Veta for the last few months so he was the first to take a seat at the Production Table - he's become such a major part of the TQS production team. Tomorrow this table will be filled. Lights, camera, action - we'll keep you updated every day!

P.S. Helen G., Rest assured Skippy's roo poo problem seems to be over once and for all - he's such a big boy now!



The quilting world has suffered a tremendous loss. Helen Kelly, known for her amazing quilting, teaching, and writing talent has died. Among her many accomplisments, Helen was well-known for her long-running humor column in Quilter's Newsletter Magazine. Please don't hesitate to comment here about how Helen touched your life. No doubt her family will be able to find comfort in your words. Here is the obiturary from her local paper:

I want to let you know about the death of one of our authors and a NE Minneapolis resident, Helen Kelley, who passed away on Sunday evening. In August, Helen was inducted into the Quilting Hall of Fame as the 38th Honoree to receive this prestigious award. Helen was known throughout the national quilting community through the column she wrote since 1983 for Quilters Newsletter Magazine, the oldest continuously published magazine dedicated to quilt-making and quilt history. In addition, she wrote seven books including three compilations of her columns, Every Quilt Tells a Story, Joy of Quilting and Loose Threads, all published by Voyageur Press, an imprint of the Quayside Publishing Group.

Helen started using a sewing machine when she was a child and taught herself to quilt as an about-to-be bride. In 1972, the Minneapolis Tribune featured a story about a family quilt she had made from quilt blocks garnered from friends around the world for her daughter’s wedding. The unexpected news coverage brought Helen local interest and opportunities to teach quilting in the Minneapolis community. In 1978 Helen was a founding member of the Minnesota Quilters and served as its founding president. Today, the Minnesota Quilters have over 1500 members. Helen taught quilting all over the world and was known not only for her skills as a teacher, artist and quilter, but as much for her warmth and humor and the joy she brought to the quilting community.

The list of honors that Helen has received throughout her career in quilting and service to her community are long and impressive: 1995 – Artist of Distinction, Fiber/Metal Arts of Minnesota; 1998 – Minnesota Quilter of the Year; 1999 – Renaissance Quilt was selected by a prestigious national committee of quilt-makers and quilt historians organized by the International Quilt Association as one of the 100 best quilts of the 20th century; 2000 – Minnesota Textile Center’s Spun Gold Award.

Until her death, Helen continued to lecture, teach, and exhibit. A 30-year retrospective of her work was on exhibit in Marion, Indiana, at The Quilters Hall of Fame during her induction and her work was also on display at the Minnesota Quilters show in Rochester in June.

More information about Helen can be found on her website at: http://www.helenkelley-patchworks.com.


John and I are in the airport waiting to get on the plane. We are really excited about the next round of guests - something for everyone! Want a hint?

SN,ES,EC,DW,VW,JF........just to name a few..............oh I can be so mean! LOL

If you are going to be at one of the tapings - time to raise your hand!



Story Submitted by: linmcquilter

I was visiting an old friend I hadn't seen in years. After I shared my relatively new interest in quilting (about 5 years worth), she said, "Maybe you'd like to see my mother's quilt. It's nothing fancy, but it needs repair. Perhaps you could tell me what could be done with it." I love old quilts, and was anxious to see it and give some advice! My friend brought out a bed-size quilt that her mother had made. Her family was Mennonite (akin to the Amish), but this was the only quilt her mother had made. And her mother died early, when my friend was a little girl, of pancreatic cancer. This was the only thing she had left from her mother, as her father had re-married and everything else had been disposed of. I examined the quilt carefully, and this is what I found: The background fabric was white, and looked like cotton dish towels, seamed together. Each block had an embroidered flower in it (all the same design.) in pink and green. The embroidery was frayed in places. The outer border, a light green, had deteriorated in places. The hand-quilting, which was a simple channel design on the diagonal, was missing in several places. As I examined the quilting closely, I could see it was not particularly skillful, but nevertheless beautiful in its own way. The thread was pink. I laughed when I noticed one of the channel lines got "lost," and actually diverted into an adjoining line! I imagined this mother wanting to make a quilt but probably feeling the effects of her illness. Perhaps it was going to be cross-hatched, but she didn't have the energy to do that. The binding was also in poor shape, and my friend shared with me that her stepmother had tried to repair the first binding, but didn't do a very good job. It was simply stitched onto the edge with the sewing machine, and was uneven and unsightly. I decided the back of the quilt was OK, as my friend told me the quilt would not be used as a bed quilt, but would simply be displayed. I wanted to leave as much of the original as possible. Needless to say, I brought the quilt home to work on it. I was thrilled to find a matching hand-quilting thread, and set to work. I picked out old, frayed stitches and re-stitched, trying to match the original quilting. I did the same with the embroidery stitches, using matching floss. Then came the border. With today's vintage fabric reproductions, I was able to find the exact solid green! I was thrilled. I removed the tattered parts and inserted new borders where necessary. The binding? I totally removed the binding that was there and put on new, again using a matching vintage reproduction. Nothing was more rewarding than being able to return this quilt to its owner, now refurbished and ready to display! I trust it will be a comforting reminder of the mother she lost, the love they shared, and also our friendship. I was so happy to be able to help.

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