April 29, 2015

Wednesday’s Blog – Decorating with Quilts

Filed under: Uncategorized — kimhanson @ 4:22 pm

I love making quilts that are not always bed-sized, but are more unusual sizes and shapes. Bed runners, smaller children’s quilts and wall hangings are quick and easy projects for all of us. But, how to best showcase those smaller quilts is always an issue; if they don’t fit on a bed per se, how best to surround yourself with them in everyday life?

I made this quilt a long time ago – it was featured in Quilter’s Connection magazine; I called it Savasana…after the final resting pose in yoga. Photo1


I particularly love the teals and purples of the batiks in this little quilt and thought, perhaps I could use this quilt in our family room. I think it works pretty well on top of our blanket box folded. The wooden crate on top holds magazines for easy reading.


Another way the quilt can work is unfolded.



The embroidered images are surrounded by Brother teal metallic embroidery thread; the perfect complement to the small area rug in our family room.


How can you best utilize your quilts in your home decor?

Till later…..Kim

April 8, 2015

The Perfect Quilt

Filed under: Uncategorized — kimhanson @ 3:14 pm

This little essay of mine is currently featured on the Quilter’s Newsletter website.

The Perfect Quilt

Infusing my heart and soul into creating a quilt for someone that I love, is my the recipe for creating the perfect quilt. Perfection is in the eye of the beholder, and sometimes the creator – it is never universal. Perfection is the “idea” of a creation that fulfills the objective.

Years ago, I came across some stunning vintage fabric on eBay. As it was truly vintage, it was only 20 inches wide and was like an old English painting; delightfully portraying the utter sweetness and simplicity of life through a childs’ eyes. When the fabric arrived at my door, it looked even better than it had on my computer monitor, and I was thrilled to have it in my hands. I folded it and placed it in my stash, not having the vaguest idea of what it would be used for.

One day our beautiful granddaughter, Harlow was born. Once I saw her sweet little face, I instantly knew why I had purchased that fabric so long ago. It reminded me of her! Even though I hadn’t yet met her, my heart knew her. Harlow is a blessing beyond words, whose only mission in life is to find joy and spread it around.

I made her a quilt featuring the vintage fabric; it’s uncomplicated and simple, like her. Soft pink and muted green cottons work in concert to complement the unmistakeable innocence of the vintage fabric. An embroidered “H” for Harlow confirms the quilt is hers, and pale pink flannel serves as the most comfy backing ever. No quilt was easier to make, yet it meant so much to me.



There are imperfections in Harlow’s quilt but I don’t see them. I just see the lovely perfection that is my granddaughter and delight in the way she snuggles under her quilt at nap time.

Till later…..

P.S. You can click on the photos and they will be larger on your computer monitor.

April 1, 2015

Scraps, Scraps and more Scraps

Filed under: Uncategorized — kimhanson @ 5:12 pm

Good Spring morning to you all. It’s so wonderful that April has arrived! Although winter here in Calgary has been unseasonably warm, it’s still such a wonderful feeling to experience the imminent arrival of Spring.

As some of you know, I have been refurbishing our basement to make way for a better working space for me – more light and better organization for quilting and for writing. We are almost there – just waiting for some lighting fixtures that have taken more than 8 weeks to arrive. Hopefully, they will be worth the wait!

I’ve come up with an idea to easily store and display my scraps, and wanted to share it with you.


It’s a fabric shoe organizer and I think it works very well as a displayer-of-all-things-scrappy. The scraps are easy to see so it’s more likely they will be used. Fabrics can be rolled up into bunches and placed in the stretchy, mesh shoe compartments, making it easy to store a ton of fabrics in this handy dandy little item.


The shoe organizer can be hung anywhere in your workspace – on a doorknob, in a closet or on a cupboard door. So easy!

Although I don’t remember where I purchased my shoe organizer they are easily found online and are not at all expensive.

Take care everyone. Till later


January 28, 2015

If You Can’t Beat ‘Em….

Filed under: Uncategorized — kimhanson @ 10:04 pm

join ‘em! I’m not really fond of that saying, but it’s appropriate for how I’m feeling. Let me explain.

For the longest time, usuallly in the warm summer months, I’ve longed for a quilt studio that was apart from our home; some place that was my very own creative and cozy little nook. I’ve searched pinterest and magazines for backyard studios, checking every picturesque nook and cranny and then dreaming about how to build it in my backyard. I even had a recurring dream about a sun-drenched, backyard quilt studio that was like a little vintage cabin, complete with gauzy curtains blowing in the breeze. At the snap of a finger, I can recreate every tiny detail of that dream – it was so very real. It looked a bit like this little gem.


or like this (if it were new)


Speaking of real, winter set in. Living in Calgary, Canada and not on the California coast was the truth I had to deal with. In my neck of the woods, given the inclement and unpredictable weather, creating a warm and spacious backyard studio would be challenge number one. More importantly, however, came the realization that we are not moving from this house anytime soon, so why not work with what I’ve got? What I did have was a basement workspace – lots of room, lots of storage but not a lot of light. The basement felt like a dungeon some days…making me dread “going to work”. But, I must admit the basement has some strong points…..it is warm, it is spacious and it can be improved.

So, in keeping with the motto of “if ya can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” we are in the process of having our basement renovated, which is surprisingly thrilling! I can hardly wait until it’s finished. The ceilings have been scraped of the popcorn, the walls have been patched and taped and sanded and the old carpeting has been removed. There are now ten brand new pot lights adorning the unpainted ceiling and three new junction boxes for wall sconces. New casing and new baseboard have already done a ton to make the space feel better. Painter is coming on Friday and then carpeting will be laid the week after. As soon as I set up my new workspace, I will send you all a photo.

A new workspace, a new direction and a new attitude. Believe it or not, I already “feel” much better about my revamped basement. I am going to be changing my webpage and working toward a different goal in 2015. I am in limbo and can hardly wait till I can get back to work. Take care everyone.

Till later…


November 14, 2014

Best Fat Quarter Quilts – Blog Tour – Day 5

Filed under: Uncategorized — kimhanson @ 2:58 am

Good day everyone!  Thanks ever so much for stopping by.

It’s such a treat to have my quilt, Charm & Whimsy featured on page 22 in Quilter’s Newsletter, Best Fat Quarter Quilts magazine.  It’s wonderful to work with editor, Mary Kate Karr-Petras and editorial assistant Caitlin Dickey. These ladies rock!


As is typical of me these days, my quilt was inspired by my granddaughter, Harlow. She loves to fly kites and walk with her umbrella in the rain and pick flowers (even when she’s not supposed to!). Like most 4 year olds, she loves eating a lollipop and opening gifts. The embroidered “H” on the quilt is the first initial in her name and the pinwheels on the bottom represent her love of all things that twirl.


The quilt is super easy to make. The colours of teal and purple, with a hint of pink just dance off the white background and have become my favorite colour scheme. I think the teal is especially lovely; it’s called Mooshka by Julie Paschkis. I bought yards of it!

The sun was shining so hard yesterday, I wanted to take advantage of the light and took some photos of my quilt. The snow didn’t dampen my spirits.


C&W4 (1024x669)

Please remember to comment on my blog for a chance to win great prizes from Quilter’s Newsletter. If you wish to purchase this issue, click here

Till later….

October 15, 2014

Cash Back!

Filed under: Uncategorized — kimhanson @ 2:42 pm

Good day to everyone.  I just had to share some news…and it involves getting $$$$ from fabric shopping.

In Canada, I’ve signed up for a service www.ebates.ca.  The site offers cash back when members shop at the retail outlets featured on the website. One of the retail outlets is www.fabric.com.  I find Fabric.com an excellent source of quilting fabrics – especially flannels and laminates and stabilizer supplies for machine embroidery. In addition, shipping is ultra-fast and I receive my items within several days of ordering them.

Now, each time I purchase fabric on Fabric.com, I check in with Ebates.ca first and receive a whopping 10% cash back on my total purchase!  Talk about win/win…..

I’d love to hear from my American quilting friends.  Is there a comparable website to Ebates.ca in the United States?

By the way, I’m eager to share with you photos of my Fabric.com order. But I can’t! It’s more beautiful Riley Blake fabric which is being used for a project due soon for Best Kids Quilts magazine.

Till later….


October 1, 2014

Fabulous Festive Fat Quarters!

Filed under: Uncategorized — kimhanson @ 8:08 pm

I was recently featured on my favourite quilt shops’ web site – Fort Worth Fabric Studio. Here is my pillow tutorial, in plenty of time for Christmas sewing and Christmas giving.

I’m thrilled and excited to be featured here today, on the Fort Worth Fabric Studio blog page. Thanks to both Jodie and Lindsey for having me here. Even though I reside in Canada….a long, long way from Texas, I order most of my quilting fabric from FWFS. I’ve come to love the service I always get, the fabulous quality of fabrics that arrive in my mailbox and regular Friday email featuring new fabrics and sale bundles. What could be better?

I’m a freelance quilt designer and writer – my work can be found here and on my pinterest page. Visit my website and sign up for regular quilt-related emails.

So…..speaking of fabric and bundles, here is what arrived in my mailbox a short time ago!


From that fabulous festive bundle of fat quarters, my Christmas pillow was born.


Sweet and simple is my motto when creating quilt patterns and this pillow is about as sweet and simple as they come. Since it’s only September, you have oodles of time to make this project before Christmas rolls around. Make it as a gift for someone special!

Supplies: (all fabrics used to make the pillow are in the pictured fabric bundle and are fat quarters – 18″x22″ – with the exception of the white, background fabric)
Finished size: Pillow cover 15 1/2″x15 1/2″

7 Fat Quarters – (Black with multi coloured dots, black with white dots, black with Christmas wreaths, green with white dots, green with Christmas trees, red stripe, red with green leaves)
1/2 yard white
15″ square pillow form
17″ square of quilt batt
2 yards stabilizer – 20″ wide
1 yard fusible web
2 1/2 yards red rickrack
spray starch
temporary spray fabric adhesive
needle, thread, thimble

Optional: crocheted flower, four buttons


1. Two pieces of white fabric each 17″ square
2. From six of the fat quarters, two blacks, two greens and two reds cut one 2″x22″ strip from each.
3. Cut three more 2″x22″ strips from the black with multi coloured dots, four 4″ corner squares, and four 2″ circles
4. Cut four 2 1/2″ circles from four other fat quarters
5. From remaining fat quarters, choose four different fabrics and cut four 16 1/2″x12″ rectangles for pillow back
6. Cut two 16 1/2″x12″ rectangles from stabilizer for pillow back

Construction: Pillow Front (Cover) use a 3/8″ seam allowance unless otherwise noted

Begin by stitching together six 2″ strips for the pieced patchwork square. Press seam allowances and spray with starch.


Cut six 2″ strips from the six fat quarter unit


Line up the cut strips as per the photograph. Match seams and stitch. Press rows in alternating directions. Spray with starch.


Trim pieced patchwork square to measure 10″x10″. Stitch 2″ black strips as borders to both top and bottom and to both sides. Press and trim.


Cut a piece of fusible web to measure 10″x10″. Using the directions for the type of fusible web you are using, fuse to the back of the square using your iron.

Fold one white fabric square in half, and then in half again to find the middle.


On the diagonal, center the pieced patchwork square onto the white fabric and using an iron, fuse being mindful to trim away any loose threads.


Stitch around the outer perimeter of the pieced patchwork square using a machine applique or blanket stitch. Trim any loose threads.

Place one 4″ square right side down on one of the pillow cover corners. Using a pencil, draw a line across square diagonally. Stitch along the pencil line.


Cut the square 1/4″ from the stitching line.


Press the triangle open. Repeat for the three other corners of the pillow cover.

Mark the center between the pillow corner and the edge of the pieced patchwork square. Draw a very light pencil line and pin rickrack to that line. Carefully stitch on the rickrack.


Fuse circles to rickrack as shown in the photograph.

DSC_0195 (1024x657)

Make a three-part quilt sandwich with the pillow cover, quilt batt and the second piece of white fabric as backing. Adhere each layer by smoothing and applying spray adhesive. Pin. Quilt as desired. Trim to even. (My pillow has been quilted using a free motion pattern, which worked double duty, by not only quilting the pillow cover, but also secured the circles onto the pillow cover. If you choose not to quilt the pillow in this manner, be sure to stitch around the circles to secure.)


Hand sew on the crocheted flower and buttons, if you so choose.


Pillow Back:

Place the right side of one pillow back rectangle on the table. Layer a corresponding piece of stabilizer and another pillow back rectangle on top. Fold over the top edge 1/2″ and press. Fold over top edge another 1/2″, press and stitch. Do the same for the other pillow back piece.


Right sides together, layer the three-piece pillow back rectangles over the pillow cover keeping the seam allowances to the middle. See photograph for placement.

Trim to even all layers, pin and stitch around perimeter of the pillow cover. Turn pillow cover right side out.

HH15 - Copy

Insert pillow form. You are done!


Nice to meet you all!
Kim Hanson

September 1, 2014


Filed under: Uncategorized — kimhanson @ 3:50 pm

Happy Labour Day all. The winner of a copy of Creative Machine Embroidery magazine, September/October 2014 issue is Kathy Pendleton Harrison. Thank you all for your kind comments!


August 30, 2014

Autumnal Applique

Filed under: Uncategorized — kimhanson @ 11:16 pm

While I was out walking yesterday around the neighborhood, it struck me how the feeling of Fall was in the air. The weather was lovely; warm and sunny, but there was just the “feeling” of an imminent change of seasons. There was something so familiar and comfortable about the afternoon – like I’d experienced that day so many times in the past. Perhaps a nostalgic reminder of being a child and anxiously anticipating the first day of school? I think Fall is just the best time of the year.

When I returned home, there was a delightful surprise in the mailbox. My quilt, after having been photographed and my pattern published, had been returned to me by Creative Machine Embroidery magazine. Autumnal Applique is currently being featured on pages 34-39 in the September/October 2014 issue of the magazine.


When designing this quilt, I wanted to use unexpected fabrics to depict Fall. Although reds, oranges and yellows make a beautiful Fall colour palette, I had had quite enough of that colour scheme. Instead, I visualized using batiks, especially pinks, browns and limey greens.

Once the fabrics were chosen, I had to find just the right embroidery designs to use for the machine applique. I came across two designers on the etsy.com website; Tracy Dickfos and Karen Gober. Their designs are both charming and whimsical, which of course had me totally captivated. I especially loved both of their tree embroidery designs!


Tracy Dickfos

Tracy is a lovely, young Australian designer. She happened upon the art of digitizing in a round-about way. Her formal education was as a fashion designer….who happened to take some classes in digitizing. After graduation, Tracy received a Janome embroidery machine and set about purchasing and accummulating “a whole bunch” of online embroidery designs. She was disappointed with the quality and brevity of the designs she found online, so dug in her heels and began to design her own images. Tracy feels her greatest attribute is that her brain combines a love of science with plumes of creativity – allowing her to make beautiful, structurally solid, delightful embroidery designs.

Like many of us, Tracy works from her home. She loves to sit and look out the window in her home studio dreaming about her next creation.


Karen Gober

Karen is a young mother; an American, who resides in the state of Georgia with her family. She comically says, “everything in the South is monogrammed” so she began embroidering pieces for her children and for her nieces and nephews. As time passed, Karen, with the help of her IT husband, virtually taught herself how to digitize and create her own designs. What began as a hobby, quickly grew to a business enterprise. Karen started to sell her designs on etsy.com in 2009. Check them out! You will love her work.

Thanks so very much to both Tracy and Karen for their collaboration on my autumn quilt.

Take the time to leave me a comment on my blog or on my facebook post. If your comment is chosen, I will send you a copy of Creative Machine Embroidery magazine!

Till later….


June 13, 2014

Stolen Too! To Stop a Thief

Filed under: Uncategorized — kimhanson @ 7:59 pm

Good day everyone. Here is Part two of my Stolen Quilts article, as featured in the February/March 2014 edition of Quilter Magazine .


An art quilt is a themed, one-of-a-kind creative expression in fabric. The very fact that an art quilt is distinctive and individualistic in nature, can spawn an enticing target for a quilt thief. When a quilter’s work is stolen, their world stops turning. Panic, anxiety, and heartbreak can stop them in their tracks. It is one thing to be victimized by a stranger who does not necessarily know what they are stealing – like in a smash and grab robbery or when a delivery shipment goes awry – but something quite different when the thief knows exactly what they are stealing. Exquisite, stunning “show” quilts, stolen during exhibitions are targeted for theft; and the thief could very likely be a fellow quilter, a notion so repugnant as to be beyond belief. Let’s face it, to most of us, hearing the words “quilter” and “thief” used together is true paradox.

Trust is implied when an artist displays their artwork in public. Show exhibitors must be relied on to protect a quilter’s life work as well as their own integrity. Despite best intentions, however, some creative quilters have been victimized while showcasing their work in public. Imagine the feelings of violation and despair when a quilter’s fibre art renderings – beautiful art quilts – find their way out of an exhibition hall in the hands of a thief.

Anne Morrell Robinson of Kingross Quilts & Fibre Arts

Set in the breathtakingly beautiful hills of the Margaree Valley in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia is Anne Robinson’s charming quilt studio.

Kingross 1 (640x411)

Peace and quiet and inspiration surround Anne while she works creating lovely, themed show pieces like her appliqué quilt, Birds of Color.


In 2002, Anne chose to enter her art quilt into the New York State Fair, a hustling, bustling Fair catering to thousands of visitors; a world apart from Cape Breton.

Displayed behind a 3′ picket fence, Fair organizers hung large quilts like Birds of Color (108″x108″) from ceiling rods, for all visitors to see but not touch. As the Fair was about to be closed for the evening, unbelievably, a thief managed to not only get behind the fence, but to also remove Anne’s quilt from the rod and escape without detection. Seemingly, an unbelievable feat in a public forum! Security officers noticed the missing fibre art as they were locking doors for the evening.

Anne invested two years in making Birds of Color come to life, a heart and soul project that disappeared in the blink of an eye. While local area radio and TV stations conducted some post-theft interviews with Anne, the publicity was to no avail; her quilt is still missing. State Fair organizers, while sympathetic to Anne’s plight, were not liable for the theft and therefore did not compensate her for her loss. Birds of Color was appraised for thousands of dollars, but due to a glitch in Anne’s insurance coverage, she was unable to collect on her policy. In true quilter’s “bounce back” style, however, Anne has just recently remade her quilt using a similar theme… she calls the new piece Colorful Birds of the World. It is truly magnificient.

ColourfulBirdsoftheWorld (640x483)

John Sauls, Antique Quilts Dealer (johnsauls@tyler.net)

John Sauls is a veteran antiques dealer with a special fondness of vintage quilts. A present day Texan, he exhibits his quilts around the United States at major shows and festivals. It was at the Houston Quilt Festival (a public exhibition) in 2010 that John’s antique compass quilt


was brazenly stolen from his exhibition booth. At a particularly busy time, two women approached John’s booth simultaneously….he responded to one of the women; his employee responded to the other. John’s customer asked him a few inane questions and then both women left the booth individually. John then went to check on a specific quilt for another customer, and it became immediately apparent to him that the antique compass quilt, the most expensive in the hanging group, was missing.


In hindsight, he is certain that the two women served as a distraction while a third person removed the antique quilt from its hanger in his booth.

Despite his attendance at many major shows, John is quick to point out that this type of theft has never happened to him in the past. He praises the organizers of the Houston Quilt Festival and blames himself for constructing what he refers to as a “blind spot” in his booth. John says, “Quilt Festival is without a doubt one of the most professional, top notch quilt organizations in the Country”.

Nancy O’Bryant Puentes is Executive Vice-President of Quilts, Inc., the producer of Houston Quilt Festival. Nancy warrants that, despite accommodating 60,000 visitors each year, Quilt Festival sustains only a miniscule amount of loss due to theft. Her 24-hour security staff consist of current or former police officers and they are visible throughout the exhibition; installed both inside and outside the building, at each entrance and at loading docks. Plain clothes officers circulate undetected throughout the crowd; an omnipresent deterrent to theft.

Beverly Fawcett (beverly_fawcett@yahoo.com)

Like so many exhibitors, Bev Fawcett never contemplated quilt theft. That is until 2012, when her Beatle’s-inspired, whimsical art quilt went missing from the Lakewood Quilt Show.

When My Mind Goes Wandering


was likely stolen during the first few hours of the exhibition, when someone unpinned and removed the small gem (25”x23”) from a curtain backdrop. Now, Bev admits she is “a teensy bit apprehensive about showing any quilt in public” and asks more security-related questions of show organizers.

Similar to Anne Robinson’s experience, there was interest in Bev’s stolen quilt from local TV stations and newspapers. As is typical, a police report was filed, posters of the quilt were dispersed in the neighborhood, and ebay was scoured by family members. But, Bev also took action in a way that was not typical. At subsequent exhibitions, (believe it or not!) she wore a photo of her stolen art quilt around her neck! Feeling the pain of Bev’s loss, fellow quilters wrapped her in layers of sympathy, but unfortunately, no quilt sighting.

Eric J. Woehr, an investigator with the Ontario County Sheriff’s Office in New York State, has delved into art quilt theft in the past. When asked his opinion of the markets available to a quilt thief, he says, “the only avenues I’m aware of …..would be flea markets, art shows or the internet.” As part of his after-theft investigation protocol, Eric sends out a photo and press release of the stolen quilt to local media outlets and also accesses the services offered by Artloss.com, the World’s largest database of stolen art and LeadsOnline.com, a website dedicated to recovering stolen property.

Quilters: perform your due diligence before showcasing your work in public. Query exhibit organizers on their security procedures and read, read, and read again, the show’s application forms and rules and regulations. Ensure there will be a direct sight line to your quilt; obscured vision is a thief’s delight! Pay particular attention to your intuition. If a show’s visitor demonstrates peculiar behaviour towards you or your work, take heed. Heighten your antennae rather than reigning them in. Your work is your work….it is beautiful and valuable and belongs to you. Take every step possible to ensure a thief doesn’t walk away with a piece of your life.

Everyone – please keep an eye out for the stolen quilts!

Till later…


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