Monday, November 24, 2014

Around The World Blog Hop Tour!

I was invited to participate in Around The World Blog Hop Tour by Ruth at Stitching Impressions! Ruth is a passionate hand appliqué-er and a very busy longarm quilter. You must browse her blog to see the beautiful quilts she gets to work on and her own gorgeous works of art! Check out her Lily of Rosenberry quilt. She's truly amazing! 

This is my first time at blog hopping so please excuse any errors... I have followed many blog hops but never participated in one. Thank you Ruth for including me in this adventure!

Let me introduce myself... I'm Lorette Cole...daughter, wife, mother of 4, grand-maman to 1, quilter since the 70s, obsessed with fabric, and living every one's dream. 

My husband retired at the end of 2013 and we made the long-awaited move back to the Maritimes of Canada from Los Angeles. We've been preparing for this journey for many years and we're thrilled to be back home.

On June 10th of 2014, I opened a small quilt shop in our home, called "Spruce It Up" offering quality goods at a reasonable price. I also offer my longarm quilting machine, which I named Lolah, for rent to local quilters wishing to finish their quilts. Face it... we all love to piece tops but we don't have time to hand quilt all of them.

Ruth asked me to answer 4 questions:

1. What am I currently working on?

Do you remember Yoko Saito's Quiltmania 2012 Quilt Mystère? This is block no 4 which has been sitting on my crafting table since August. I have not found time to get this ready to appliqué! I wish there were more hours in the day! Perhaps winter will allow me time to catch up. I really love appliqué and I teach my favorite method to anyone who walks through the door of the shop. Maybe I've made converts?

This is another project ready to put together for appliqué... 2015's Block of the Month at Spruce It Up Quilt Shop. It's called A Graceful Winter, a beautiful pattern by Denise Sheehan. Care to join us??

I'm happy to have several projects on the go. I learned years ago that when you get tired working on one project, a change of pace is needed. It breaks up monotony, allows a fresh view, gets more creative juices to flow.

Peppermint Place still needs borders...

I've had to pause this one as more pressing projects landed on my table. These borders have to be redone; I've started un-stitching, never a fun task but it has to be done before I can move on. 

2. How does my work differ from others?

I don't believe I'm that much different from anyone else. I stash fabric and projects just as quickly as most of you; there doesn't seem to be enough hours in the day to make all I wish to do.

However, because I offer rental time on my longarm, I get to see a lot of very creative people's work. I'm very fortunate to get a chance to teach others how to use the longarm to finish their creations! The joy of seeing someone with their quilted top counts as the utmost thrill! That makes me happy and I hope the quilters who come to rent time on Lolah enjoy the process. Seeing so many beautiful quilts gets me inspired too.
Also, if I like something, I am quick to work it out... I know what I like and for the most part, I'm able to recreate it. This is a piece I found irresistible in the Nov/Dec 2014 American Patchwork and Quilting magazine. It will grace our dining table this Christmas season. Did I tell you how much I LOVE appliqué? It opens the door to so much more... you look at patterns differently when you appliqué!

3. Why do I create?

That's a question with a simple answer: because I love it! Perhaps what helps too is the inability to sit with idle hands. Therapy... Sewing grounds me... I use it to work out problems, pass the time, to create something useful, something beautiful, something to gift, something to save, something to cherish! Crafting is in my genes... I can't remember a time I didn't "craft"... I've knit, crocheted, cross stitched, embroidered, tole painted, water colored, played with wood working, scrap booked, but the one constant in my life has been sewing. I can sit at the sewing machine for hours and resolve any issues that crop up. I do my best thinking while sewing.

4. How do I create?

I can't say that I'm very original. I'm very good with instructions! Give me a good photograph, or drawing and I can make it into a pattern. I love to re-purpose useful articles: for example, when I needed a display for thread, I found a lazy susan and had DH drill holes for dowels. It works beautifully.

I get inspiration in the beauty that surrounds us... Colors, patterns... I've joined 3 local guilds where I've met many wonderfully creative quilters. 

Sometimes it's a color that sparks the first notion...

sometimes it's a pattern found online...

Whatever causes that sudden need to create, will have my interest until it's finished. The process! I LOVE all aspects of quilting, from washing the fabrics, up to binding! Today I get to see YOUR creative juices at work... 

Thank you Ruth for asking me to join this trip Around The World Blog Hop. Next up is Chris McCarthy from KrissteezKreationz. She's a very busy lady so her blog may not be up to date... perhaps this will inspire her to update us all on her work. Look for her on December 1st.

While I have your attention, this is the last week of voting for the Spruce It Up Christmas Ornament Challenge... take a look at them now and cast your vote please. Voting ends November 30th and a winner will be announced on Dec 1st. Come back then and purchase an ornament or two... it's for a good cause! The ornaments can be found on their own page... found at the top of this blog! And thank you for taking the time to read this long post!




  1. Hi Lorette - I agree with everything you said but especially the bit about having several projects on the go at once! They do say that variety is the spice of life and I've got lots of variety on the go! Thanks for dropping by my blog. I wanted to send you and email but you are a no reply blogger! I'm off to look at the ornaments and then cast my vote!

    1. Thank you Karen. I've tried several times to get that no-reply blogger fixed and it works for a short time... no permanent fix yet. Thanks for stopping by and voting!