October 22, 2014

Autumn and Winter Swap - You are invited

Instead of swapping Christmas Crackers this year, CQI will host a centralized baggie (squishie) swap with the theme of Autumn or Winter (your choice). 

How it will work:  
You may participate by preparing and sending anywhere from 3 – 8 baggies to the Swap Hostess, along with a self-addressed, stamped envelope. You will receive the same number of baggies in return. There are specific guidelines for assembling your baggies, as well as dates and other things to be aware of, so if you would like to participate, PLEASE READ THE INSTRUCTIONS below thoroughly. Feel free to ask any questions, too!

AUTUMN THEME:  Warm-colored fabrics, neutrals. May include themes of leaves, trees, harvest, eerie/spooky things, acorns, mushrooms, corn, pumpkins, cornucopias, woodland creatures, etc.

WINTER THEME:  Winter colors such as red, green, blue, white, silver, gold. Not specific to a holiday, please (Christmas, Hannukkah), but instead think of snowy winter, snowmen, frost and ice, cool colors and shimmery surfaces, icicles, bare trees, woodland creatures, wreaths and garlands, evergreens, candles, bells, sleighs, music, family gatherings.

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WHAT GOES IN THE BAGGIE?    Contents should include:

FABRIC (required): 1 piece 12x12” (or 30x30cm) OR 2 pieces 6x12” (15x30cm) OR
            4 pieces 6x6” (15x15cm)
Fabric should be clean, pressed, free of holes, stains, seams.  Should be a fancy fabric (no quilting cottons, please)

LACE OR TRIM (required):  3 pieces, 8-10” (20-25cm) in length each. May include lace trim, embroidered trims, jacquard ribbons, fancy trims, gimp trims, braids, specialty trims (seasonal), etc. 

PLUS any four (4) of the following:

Threads (Embroidery):  1 yard (.9 metre) each of 2 different threads, wound on small card or paper (not loose). Threads should be for stitching, not couching (no heavy textured specialty threads/yarns).   No plain DMC cotton floss please. Try cotton or silk perle, silk/rayon floss, etc, wool, other blends.

Silk Ribbon: 18” or more (45+cm) of 2 different colors. Widths should be 4mm or 7mm for this swap. Wind ribbon on small card or paper.

Silkie Print:  1 print, at least 2x3”.  May be larger. If smaller, 2 separate prints count as one)

Beads :  2 choices from following:  1 teaspoon seed beads (in little baggie),  
5-9 sew-on beads:  round, daggers, drops, etc.  You may include more, but not less.

Buttons:  3 different:  glass, MOP (mother of pearl, not cheap shell), metal, or other collectible or  unusual.  Genuine vintage plastic is OK.  No modern plastic buttons or plain shirt buttons,  please. 

Handmade Motif (1):  crocheted or tatted item, handmade ribbon rose, beaded cabochon, or ??
Other Motif (1):  lace appliqué, floral hankie (half is OK), jewelry piece (if suitable for CQ), or ??

Sample Winter Baggie, left.     Right: packaged Autumn Baggie

You may choose either an AUTUMN-themed baggie or a WINTER-themed baggie. Or both. For example, you may want to swap 2 Autumn baggies and 3 Winter baggies.  Each baggie should have your name and email address on the outside along with the word `WINTER` or `AUTUMN`, according to its contents.  We will try to trade Autumn baggies for Autumn baggies and Winter baggies for Winter baggies.  However, if there are too many of one or the other, you may get something different back.

WHEN:  Baggies must be mailed to Swap Hostess, Cathy Kizerian, so that they arrive by Friday, November 14.  The swap will be done on the weekend of November 15-16 and mailed out to everyone on Monday, November 17.



1.   Label all your baggies, then put them in a large mailing envelope.
2.  Weigh the stuffed mailing envelope and determine the amount of postage you will need for a return envelope from that weight. 
3.    Using stamps (not metered mail), stamp a self-addressed envelope OF THE SAME SIZE with that postage amount.
4.    Place the stamped, self-addressed envelope into the mailing envelope along with your squishies.
5.    Weigh outgoing envelope again for your correct outgoing postage (or take to the post office).    Mail to:              
               Cathy Kizerian,  Utah, USA
               Please leave comment to receive address by personal email 


You are welcome to join in the fun! Please follow the same preparation as above (#1 and #5). However, to handle the return postage, I will need to either bill you via Paypal once the return postage amount is determined (expect to pay $6-7 to swap 3-8 baggies) OR work out some sort of trade.  I wish I could afford to send things to you at my expense, but I can’t.  
Please contact me privately at   catkiz (at) Xmission (dot) com  before sending baggies.


No sign-ups are required.  However, we hope that participants are enthusiastic Crazy Quilters who will remember the Golden Rule of Swapping:  Swap unto others as you would have them Swap unto You.   In other words, if you send junk in, you will get junk back (probably your own).  Sorry to have to even mention this because usually that is not a problem, but we just want everyone to play nicely. Oh, and NO hostess gifts, please. I don`t need/want them, nor do I want you to spend extra postage. Thanks, dearies!!

October 06, 2014

Announcing Giveaway #3 Winner . . . and more

Thanks for joining us last week as we recapped the 2014 CQI Retreat in Kansas City.  

Without further ado, let us announce the winner of a set of storage bags from Thearica Burroughs of Crazy Quilting Supplies.  No picture of these are available, but the retreat ladies loved them.  And to go along with (or IN) the bags is a gorgeous Stash Bundle from Gerry Hookstra of Sewing Southpaw.

So, here are the results:

True Random Number Generator
Min: 1
Max: 34

Powered by RANDOM.ORG

The winner is Janet Popish of Go Crazy With Me, who said:

I know how much fun these retreats can be. Glad you all had a good time!

Congratulations, Janet!  Please contact either Gerry H or me (Cathy) and we will get your info!  And thanks to everyone for playing with us!!

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Some General Announcements for CQI and this blog. . .

We plan to reactivate and re-energize the blog with regular postings of CQI group happenings and, most of all, crazy quilting eye candy.  Yahoo Groups has made it difficult for us to maintain comprehensive photo albums of every round robin as we used to, which was step-by-step stitching on each block.  But we will be featuring a round robin every week or two and show you some of the lovely blocks being created.
Netherlands block created by Margreet de Reus

In addition to posting about round robins, we will announce swaps, charity events, challenges, and more here. And we also want to brag about member accomplishments, so be sure to let us know when you finish a project, win a ribbon, or piece your first block!!  We will strive for a quarterly recap - or newsletter, if you will - to keep you abreast of what is going on in the CQI world.

And finally, this is where you will find information regarding our planned 2015 CQI Retreat in the Netherlands next September. 

So be sure to add us to your blog-reading feed, and we will see you back here soon!

October 03, 2014

Retreat Recap PART THREE

Hello again. First, let`s start with the announcement of the winner from our last (second) retreat blog post.  The prize this time is a $25 spending spree at Cathy’s Crazy by Design, a cute Etsy shop (even if I do say so myself, LOL) full of laces and fabrics.

The Random Number Generator picked #7

True Random Number Generator
Min: 1
Max: 32

Powered by RANDOM.ORG

.... and that is Donna Abrams, who commented, " I am mesmerized by the pictures of this retreat. This has to be the most wonderful adventure a CQr could ever attend ."

Congratulations, Donna!  Start picking out your goodies, and I will contact you privately to make arrangements.

Information on today’s giveaway (the third and final one) is at the end of this blog post.

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....And so we come to Friday and Saturday, the final days of our Retreat.   On Friday, there were no mini-classes scheduled.  The morning was time for free stitching, and in the afternoon we planned a special treat - a visit to the newly-opened Florilegium, a wonderful emporium of stitching delights in Weston, Missouri.  Gretchen Nutt, the owner, was a gracious hostess and provided coffee, other beverages and treats to nourish us hungry shoppers.  And shop we did!

Historic Downtown Weston, Missouri
Driving into downtown Weston, you are almost taken back a century (were it not for all the modern cars!).  It was an unassuming, rather quiet place on this cool, cloudy and breezy day. Florilegium occupied the corner of a century-old brick building, and the closer we drew, the more the window displays and treasures beckoned!

The wall of fibers and yarns

Connie Eyberg rests her feet. And wallet.

The Case of Wondrous Things

Bead Wall
Even the checkout area was glorious!

On Saturday, Lisa Boni conducted two well attended and very popular classes. The first one was on Intermediate Embroidery - expanding basic seam stitches into layered designs. She showed us her linen sampler - a band sampler arranged first by stitch, then by motifs or other themes.  Naturally, it is a work in process, but it was great fuel for our own ideas.

We didn’t really get many pictures of the classes 
themselves (most of us were IN them), but here is proof 
that we DID stitch on our projects during the retreat!! (below)

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Everyone was asked to bring a gift in the value range of $15-30. To play this game, everyone got a number (1-26). Person #1 started by picking a wrapped gift from the table.  When it was person #2’s turn, they could pick another gift from the table OR steal #1’s gift away, forcing person #1 to have to pick another gift. A gift could only be stolen twice. The third owner of the gift was the permanent owner, and the gift was out of play.

Here are the ladies, sitting around, anxiously waiting to begin. However, because Lori King so generously brought a box of used books and magazines on CQ, silk ribbon embroidery, ribbon embroidery, and regular quilting, there was enough for everyone to have one. To make it fair, we began in reverse order, with person #26, and each lady had about 30 seconds to come up and look at the books and select her free book.  It got us pumped up and ready to play!!

Here is the gift table before play began. You can see Connie and Lori B in the background
looking at their newly-acquired books.  :-)
It would be impossible to describe the ups and downs of the game, so let’s just share some fun pictures of the ladies, the prizes and let you decide how much fun we had!

Beth Pile and Wilma Van Wagensvelt
Karen Guthrie and her mahhhvelous CQ vest
HA! We even got Lori Burgesser on camera!!
Beth again, thrilled with the Under the Sea pincushion made by Lisa Boni

At every retreat that Lauri Burgesser attends, she brings an incredible hand-made CQ bear. It is THE prize that everyone wants. You’ll see close-up pictures later on and you can see why.

Gerry holds the bear
Sandy Larson is inspecting treasure!
Joyce Robertson gets to hold the bear for awhile
Lori looks on as someone else holds the bear. Wonder what she is thinking???
Wilma opens a cute tiny pincushion gift
Susan Jarosz and Colleen Anderson are probably day dreaming about the bear!
Kristie Watson opened this awesome pumpkin made by Gayle Schipper
and she decided right there and then that NO ONE was going to take it from her.

So, it became her baby. Her “unborn” baby, LOL!!!
Tahlia Holt was very serious when it came her time to pick

Donna found gold. Or pink, that is. An amazing box of things that
Connie Kalina had dyed pink with....wait for it.... AVOCADOS!!
The Pink Lusciousness and some hand-made buttons by Connie Kalina
Darlene got a cute CQ-ed wrapped hanger!!
Close-up of hanger. Would you hang something on it and cover up all that beauty??
The 2014 Bear by Lauri Burgesser

Side view

We displayed all the gifts after everyone had opened them.
A great covered tin
A clever and handy armchair caddy
Karen Guthrie made this lovely covered tin that was won by Cathy 
Eye Candy and Brazillion Embroidery threads and instructions
What a cute CQ teacup pin cushion
Connie Eyeburg’s dainty stitching is unmistakable in this beautiful heart
Liz won this awesome purse stitched by Colleen Anderson
Carol Kramer won the autumn pillow.


And after the games, the classes, the shopping trips, Show and Tell, laughter, snacks, friendship and sharing, it was time for one final thing, the Group Photo. After being cloudy and rainy for three days, the sun came out on Saturday.  So, we all headed to the gazebo and were arranged in position. But Connie and Connie photo-bombed us!!!!

Connie Eyberg and Connie Kalina.
Good Connie and Bad Connie (just kidding!) - We love them both!

After realizing we had too many faces in shade on the gazebo, we moved to the stairs for the picture. Lauri Burgesser shows her technicolor coat (amazing, isn’t it?)  Notice everyone pointing at her?? She is shy and we were trying to tease her.

And then it was over and we all traveled our separate ways, homeward bound.  We hope we can meet again next year.  And that YOU are able to join us.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * 
Final Giveaway Announcement

Today’s gift is a combination of two things that will bring joy to any red-blooded crazy quilter!
Thearica of Crazy Quilting Supplies  has a wonderful set of three zipper cases for storing crazy quilt embellishments in (for travel, or just to organize yourself).  Other ladies who won these at the Retreat were thrilled with theirs.  We are sorry we do not have a picture, but trust me that these are delightful!

AND, to top it off, Gerry Hookstra of Sewing Southpaw has put together a giftie of CQ goodies to fill them with!   

One winner will be chosen, and the respective gifts will be sent from these two lovely donors.  To enter, just leave a comment on this blog post by Sunday evening, October 5 (Mountain Standard Time).  We will draw the winner on Monday morning and announce the winner at that time.

October 01, 2014

CQI 7th Annual Retreat - PART TWO

Hi friends! Let’s start the day off right with the announcement of the winner from our first retreat blog post.  The prize, you will remember, is a set of crazy quilting templates from Sharon Boggon of Pintangle and a CQI moderator. 

The Random Number Generator picked #24

True Random Number Generator

Min: 1

Max: 29


Powered by RANDOM.ORG

.... and that is Ann Pierce, who commented, "This sounds like so much fun! I hope to join y'all some day. I'm new to CQ but my bee friends are the best. So inspiring!"

Ann, you will LOVE these templates, and we are confident they will help you on your way to creating more beautiful seams! We will contact you privately to get your address.  

Information on today’s giveaway is at the end of this blog post.

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Retreat, Part Two

We’re back to bring you Part Two in the continuing saga (LOL) of the Crazy Quilting International Retreat in Kansas City.   Warning: this is a very picture-heavy post, so sit down and grab another cuppa.  When we left off, it was Thursday morning. . . .

After the Stash Dash (see Part One), the first class was Making Fabric Books.  Since no one person in the group was an expert, dear Beth Pile offered to lead a discussion and show a book she had done. In addition, others brought fabric books to show and even a book ABOUT fabric books.  

L-R Cathy K, Betty L, Beth, Sandy L, Wilma, Joyce (in black), Carol (barely visible), Liz (standing), Freda, Karen G, Colleen (standing), Gayle, Lori H (seated in foreground) Connie E (in pink), Sharyn (facing away), Lisa B and Tahlia H. 
The book examples were passed around. Here Connie E enjoys Gerry H`s book.
L-R Beth, Wilma, Carol, Freda, Gayle
A lovely fabric book about Angels made by Freda Butler. 
The afternoon class was Using Button Creatively. The original teacher, Barb W, could not attend due to illness, so Tahlia Holt (in red top) volunteered to fill in. She stayed up late the night before (we caught her stitching into the wee hours) to provide examples for the class. She did a great job, and the attendees were so happy!  

L-R, Lori K, Darlene D, Beth, Wilma (barely visible), Diane M (in pink), Tahlia, Joyce R and Betty Lenz


One of the great highlights of any retreat is getting to see others’ work.  That makes Show and Tell both enjoyable and inspiring.  And the room we were in had bulletin board walls, so we were able to hang most of the medium and smaller pieces up for viewing over the next couple days. The actual quilts were hung over chairs and laid on tables for closer viewing and photo opportunities.   Sit back and grab a cuppa. There is a lot of great eye candy ahead in this picture-heavy post!

(PS - As I was busy pinning items up for display during Show & Tell, I missed much of the actual presentation. Therefore, many of the items below are without proper credits. No disrespect is intended. If the owners or other retreat attendees can contact me with the information, I will update the pictures.  Thanks, Cathy)

A wonderful block from the Pets Round Robin by Darlene Doersch
(block credits needed)
Peacock in progress, Tahlia Holt
African RR blocks; Tahlia Holt
This lovely stocking by (credits needed) will stop Santa in his tracks!

Carol Kramer at her stitching table
Carol Kramer, family block
Wilma from the Netherlands attended and showed us her beautiful
jewel-toned crazy quilt with fans and peacocks.
Detail of Wilma’s incredible peacock CQ. The stitched peacocks are vintage
Dutch cigarette silks from the  1930’s.
A corner of a quilt by Sandy Larson
Another glorious corner of Sandy Larson’s quilt.

Gerry H chatting with stitching friends
Gerry’s Victorian Ladies Round Robin Wall Hanging

Lisa Boni could usually be found stitching
(when not teaching or taking photos!)
Some of Lisa Boni’s incredible pincushions for CQ Journal Project 2014
Detail of Lisa Boni’s cream on cream crazy quilt
A lovely bird vignette from Lisa Boni
Still more lovely stitching from Lisa Boni’s cream on cream quilt.
Cathy Kizerian shows one of her blocks 
Cathy Kizerian's work on Paris-themed block for Darlene Doersch
Halloween quilt top by Darlene Doersch 
We easily filled all the walls of the room; and then the tables,
and eventually we had to draper quilts over chairs!
Freda Butler stitched this gorgeous triptych
Detail of Freda’s stitching
Lovely CQ by (credits needed)
Top left: Connie Kalina’s Lace & Pearls RR blocks
Bottom Left: First piece by Joyce Robertson
Left:  3 silk ribbon flowers by Donna Dickison
This lovely purse front was stitched by Elizabeth Rudder.
Another block from the Pet RR. What cute fabric! Block by Gerry Hookstra
A great complementary color scheme on this yummy block by Carol Kramer
Check out the details on this beauty! Block by (credit needed)
Karen Guthrie and her marvelous Fan quilt!!!
Fan detail of Karen’s quilt
Karen’s quilt also contained incredible embroidery 
More eye candy from Karen Guthrie’s quilt
Betty and Freda show off a vintage crazy quilt brought by Betty Lenz
Stitching detail of vintage crazy quilt
Lauri B’s Under the Sea quilt shown by Gerry H and Sharyn N 
Beautiful blue and white quilt by Karen Guthrie
Detail of blue and white quilt.
Elizabeth Rudder shows her contest-winning stuffed bunny
This was Connie Eyeberg’s calendar block (November)
for Pam Kellogg’s CQ Quarterly Magazine 2015 Calendar
Quilt by Connie Eyeburg
Detail of Connie Eyeberg quilt
This quilt was INCREDIBLE!
Another masteripiece by Karen Guthrie
Flower basket
So much eye candy!
Kristie W and Tahlia hang eye candy while in the background,
Elizabeth and Freda chat
This block was stitched by Carol Kramer
Diane Matheson, stitching away
One of Diane Matheson’s family CQ blocks. She does one
 for each of her grandchildren.
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As promised, we have another drawing today for our readers.  Today’s giveaway will be for a  $25 Spending Spree at Cathy`s Crazy by Design, owner Cathy Kizerian. You will get $25 worth of your choice of lace or fabrics, and the postage is on us!     
To enter, just leave a comment below. Make sure that your comment is linked to an email address (or leave it in the body of your message) so we can contact you if you win. Winner will be drawn on Thursday evening (Mountain time) and announced on Friday’s Part Three blog post.