Teaching In 2018, Plus an Irresistible Gingerbread Cookie Recipe!

 Scissors and Mother Nature coming together for a day of enchantment!

Scissors and Mother Nature coming together for a day of enchantment!

Squam Art Workshops recently announced their 2018 schedule and I'm thrilled to be teaching in June! A few spots are still open, so if you've wanted to experience all that is Squam, this might be your time! You can read about my workshop and all of the other amazing workshops and teachers: http://www.squamartworkshops.com

Join me for a day in the woods as we take our paper cutting to new heights, inspired by the beauty that awaits right outside our cabin door. Our day together will inspire paper enthusiasts, art journalers, printmakers, quilters, painters, book makers...anyone who enjoys nature and pattern. We'll work first with papers and then with fabrics. (Stitching later on your own is completely optional.) I'll bring plenty of materials, but if you wish to bring a few treasured bits and pieces of paper or fabric, please do! You can read the materials list here for more information. 

Now that the holidays are in full swing, I confess that as an empty nester some beloved Christmas traditions have sadly fallen by the way-side. So when my very dear friend Jodi, a Super Mom who puts the "festive" in "holidays", invited me for a weekend of holiday baking, I didn't pause for a moment before saying, "Yes!!" 

Jodi made sure that every recipe we baked was nothing short of excellent. We made the best tasting sugar cookies I've ever had, very tasty gingerbread cookies and two kinds of biscotti: pistachio cherry and chocolate almond! I'm sharing one of these recipes below - 

 Jodi's skilled hands at work!

Jodi's skilled hands at work!

 ABC Gingerbread Men and not-so-Ugly Sweaters share a plate with more traditional cookies. 

ABC Gingerbread Men and not-so-Ugly Sweaters share a plate with more traditional cookies. 

 Busy hands! Jodi's nine year old son, Keegan.

Busy hands! Jodi's nine year old son, Keegan.

On our day of baking, flour was flying, cookie cutters were clanking and laughter was bubbling. While snowflakes fell, we sang to all of our favorite Christmas songs and Jodi's entire home smelled scrumptious. Here's to holiday baking, treasured memories, and doing it all over again next year!

If the people you love need a pleasantly spicy, heart warming cookie, here's the irresistible gingerbread cookie recipe we used. 

Before I sign off for the Christmas holiday, this is a good time to remind you of my FREE (QUICK!) quilt pattern in the right hand margin, and FREE Winter Wonderland Hexi EPP template (which fits nicely in a stocking, or conveniently rolled and tucked into the tree or other clever hiding spot)! See this post for a project and tutorial using these inspiring hexis. Gorgeous naturally dyed organic cotton sateen fabrics are in the shop. My Harvest quilt pattern would be a stunning heirloom in red and white! Have a look. As an extra special touch for any gifts, I'll wrap (in brown paper and string with a sprig of greenery) and ship directly to the recipient at no extra charge. Simply email me the details.

 These new bags are sold out, but more are under construction. Stay tuned after the holidays. 

These new bags are sold out, but more are under construction. Stay tuned after the holidays. 

Thank you for following along during this year of steady growth and wonderful surprises. You are the reason I do what I love, and having your support matters. I'll be back with a New Year's post sharing some exciting things already lined up for 2018...hint, hint, my very first BOM! In the mean time, I'm wishing you a magical, fun-filled holiday season wrapped with love. 

Deep Into Winter

Being a bit of an introvert, I relish winter months here in upstate NY. Short on daylight and long on snowfall, these months practically beg for hand work, hot drinks and quiet reflection. My sketchbook is brimming with new quilt designs, my work table is heaped with fabrics of all kinds, and the dye pots are simmering away. I'm most productive when I don't have to leave my studio for days at a time, much like having a few snow days in a row!

So far this year, January saw the release of my free EPP template, Striped Octagons, and I've been floored by the positive response it has received. For those of you who have featured it on your blogs, reposted it on Instagram and shown off your talent at #StripedOctagonEPP, thank you from the bottom of my heart! I love interacting with you, and look forward to seeing this talented online community spread its wings. 

With February in full swing, and your positive messages fueling me to charge ahead with more quilt designs, I'm knee deep in pattern design and testing! Pictured here is a test run for one of those new patterns. It's during this stage that I work out design flaws and make construction notes. As I'm stitching, I'm asking myself, is this a pleasure or a pain? Is this shape awkward to stitch? How does this fabric respond to this technique? Is there a better way? It's YOU I have in mind as I'm testing and scribbling notes. Your happiness stitching any of my patterns is paramount. 

 Freezer paper for reverse applique. Nice!

Freezer paper for reverse applique. Nice!

The colors used for this test pattern seem to be an excellent remedy to the cold winds blowing around outside my window. Well, that and connecting with all of you! For now, I have a few more samples to stitch up before releasing this beauty later this year.  

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