NJ Quilt Convention et al

On Saturday, I took a couple of hours to attend the NJ State Quilt Convention.  It was a terrific show and if you’re in the area next year, you should try to attend (or at least enter something).   I couldn’t take photos of everything but I did take pics of some of the quilts that caught my eye.    I hope you enjoy the tour….

Which one is YOUR favorite?


This quilt is named Fairies at the Bottom of my Garden by Joyce Hughes of Warminster PA.  It reminds me of that Fairy quilt book that came out last year by that European woman (can’t remember her name).   The work that went into this is amazing.   While it’s not exactly my quilting taste, it totally captured my imagination, and it works on so many levels.

I love the pastels in this quilt, Spring Awakening by Diane Colucci or Raway, NJ (I love super big quilts, too)

The name of this beauty  (it won Viewer’s Choice) is Pepto Bismal by Anna Macaluso of Totowa NJ. You should see the quilting on this baby which Anna also did.



   Psychedellic Storm by Patricia Saklas of Wall Township, NJ (I got hit by a truck there once!  No, really, I did!)

This one is called A Little Bit of American History by Susan McDermott of Warren NJ.   I loved the traditional feel of this quilt and the scrappy colors.  I was just really drawn to it.  No ribbon.  😦


Now this was a funny one.  I spoke with the maker, Carol Vansickle, who found the background for this quilt at Keepsake Fabrics.   It’s hard to tell in the photo but it was a melon colored, salmon!   Really unusual but it really worked for the quilt. I loved that she used something so off base for the background of this very traditional star and the fact that the color was an off, unexpected color, it gave the whole quilt an genuine antique look.    The Quilt is called, Star Found in a Box Under the Stairs in Elk Mound Wisconsin!  LOL    


  This is called Fun Color-Go-Round by Barbara Brown Esserman.  I loved the movement.  

I love this letter quilt.  It didnt’ win a ribbon but it won my admiration.  I love the graphic nature of it and the black and white letters with the cream colored, “family” written in it.  By Mary Vaughan of Mountain Lakes, NJ (Evan used to go to school there),  there are 28 family names hand appliqued into the quilt.  It was a Quilting by the Lake 2007 project for Mary.   I LOVE IT!

   This bright beaut is called the Harvest Quilter’s Friendship Quilt by my buddy Karen Goeggler and the Harvest Quilters.   It is breathtakingly bright.   Karen is quite an artist in her own right.

My buddy from Kindred Quilts, Linda Wood (who happens to be just shy of 100) made this prize winning quilt (above)  Its from a Judy Neimeyer pattern but it’s done perfectly and won a ribbon for the old girl!

I’m so bummed because my cameara was out of focus for this terrifc quilt.   It is by Judith Baymiller and it’s called, Awakening.   I just loved it and her use of color was sensational.   Lot’s of Kaffe fabric. 



This is a striking quilt…but I think it’s a redo of the original that’s hanging in Liza Lucy’s kitchen!   It’s a Piece O Cake Design and it fabulous.  It was made by Joan Nell of Freehold, NJ and is called Pinwheels, of course. 


This was another of my favorites that didnt’ win a thing.   It was made by Sylvia Keating of Point Pleasant, NJ.  The colors are brilliant and the photos do it no justice.  


Can you tell I was attracted to brights?   Love this one too, by Denise Fox of Collingswood NJ.  It called NJ Beauty.  You go girl! 



My buddy Barb Vedder (remember her from an earlier blog?) made this quilt.   She’s the Miss Thang who won all of the prizes at the luncheon while wearing her faux Missoni top.


This quilt was inspired by the Kaffe Fassett book Quits from the Victoria and Albert.   I love this quilt.  Totally love it.   She called it:  Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

This was one of two of my friend Dot’s quilts that were entered before she passed away last week.  Our friend Gloria brought a pot of flowers from our guild and a note of Dot’s passing.  


  This is teacher/designer Merry May along with one of her stenciled then quilted quilts.   Love the technique.  

   Here’s another very traditional quilt that rocked my world.   It was done by Renee Pearlman from New Fairfield, CT.  Love the use of color! No ribbon 😦


The two quilts above are ribbon winners by Anna Faustino of North Arlington, NJ .  First of all, I love her (and she’s really pretty) but her work speaks for itself.  She’s is definately one to keep your eye out for.  She’s a superstar!  

  This is Debbie Stanley (show co-chair) with one of her famous vests!  

If you were at Fall Market in Houston last year you might remember these from the booth.   They were designed and embellished by my good friend, Catherine Ravera from my Katmandu line — AND THEY WON A RIBBON!  


   Here’s another one from Catherine.  She oozes talent and has had her work shown all around the world! 

I love blue and yellow quilts and this is no exception.  It’s by Jane Greak and its’ another Harvest Quilter’s Friendship Quilt.  I have to meet these Harvest Quilters.

  Yellow and blue called Moonlight and roses. Constance  Kawalec  of Sayreville NJ made this quilt

This is a great applique quilt.  Really big.  It is called Stars in my Garden (a Piece O Cake design) by Fran Gillesheimer and Carol Lauterbach of Whiting, NJ  

  Helen brought me a gift last year from her China visit (a bone tool used for turning tubes of fabric) and was upset that I didn’t thank her for it.   I never got it!  She explained that she had left it for me at the end of last year’s quilt convention.   Just then, a buddy who was listening in said “Was it in a yellow envelope?”

Lo and behold.  They found it THIS YEAR in the quilt show supplies and brought it out to me which I unwrapped in front of her!   See, I have a brain like Swiss Cheese but you never know! 

  This is my dear, dear, friend and long armmer to the stars, Janice Jamison!  She teaches at MQX!   And HERE”S some dirt:  Janice is a cousin of Al Reynolds – Yup, the Star Jones EX!  Sweet!

 I love this quilt of the two girls.  I was surprised the it didn’t win anything.  It’s called Wish Upon an Autumn Star.   I love fall and I love autumn colors so I guess that’s why I’m so drawn to this piece.  It’s by Raina Lynn-Knapp of Westwood NJ (one of my favorite little Jersey towns — I’ll have to take you there one day).

  This is my buddy Brian.  He is the grandson of a quilting buddy of mine.  I was teasing him that next year I expect him to make his own quilt, like his sister Alyssa, and have it hung, along with all of the other quilts, at the show.   He agreed. 

So, when he found out that there was a kid’s section for quilt making he insisted that he make his own quilt.  He did!  Then he went flying around the convention center to find me.   This kid has just so much personality that he never fails to make me laugh and smile.   I think he is the greatest.   He was so proud of his quilt made with kitty cat fabric. 

On the left is Brian’s sister, Alyssa who stands under the quilt that she made.  She also made her dress.

        This daisy quilt was made by my other buddy Destiny Dighton!   She did it all by herself and won a second place ribbon!


   Brian took me very seriously and rushed to get his “quilt” hung in the show. “Right here!  Hang it here!” he kept saying!   I LOVE that kid!  LOLOL

  This beauty was done by my friend, guild mate and small sewing circle mate, Gloria Dighton of Long Valley.    It is stupendous in person. 

If you click on these images you’ll see her embellishment and maybe the silks that she used. 


I didn’t see this quilt until I was about to leave.   It is by Joan Nell of Freehold NJ and it’s called, Shade Garden Sampler.  I love the bright red fabric.    Which, by the way is a HINT HINT HINT for my new line called krakow!   Be on the lookout this spring!   

  I’m embarrassed to say that I screwed up and didn’t find out who did this quilt but I really liked the pomegranetes and the scrpit that says, “To love honor and cherish” along with a monogram.  I’m sure it’s a wedding or anniversary quilt but I don’t know more than that besides that I liked it a lot.    Anyone know who did this? 

(ADDED JUNE 19, 9:45 AM:  Thanks for the responses.  This quilt, like the earlier seen alphabet letter quilt,  was also done by Mary Vaughan of Mountain Lakes, NJ)

After the show I hit my new favorite junk-Mexican food, Chipolte Mexican Grill (which are popping up faster than Starbucks did).   I have to go to the Bridgewater Mall to get my fix. 

And her name is . . .


Now I didn’t think she was a Petunia when I wrote my post but of all of the names, that just who she was.   So meet Petunia Lipinski.

   I wanted to give you an idea of her size so I took this photo next to a basket of my chicken’s eggs! 

Here, Jeff is holding her AND an egg to show how small she is.  Honest to Pete, she is the shyest damn dog I’ve ever seen!

Next Time, dear Pickles. . .

i have a lot of new books that have just hit the market to show you.  Some I like and some I hate.   If anyone from C&T is reading — where the hell are the review copies of books that I’m seeing all over the place?   You’re losing ink, baby!  Makes me very, very nervous about how my own books will be marketed. 

I’ll give you my 2-cents on my next book reviews and what I’ve decided about how to approach writing them.

Watercolor class – ugh!

But before I go,  let me show you a little thumbnail of a teddy bear I painted in my watercolor class on Monday.   I truly suck in this class and have to work hard to get shitty results.  Alas, I will never be a “true” artist.  Oh well, f**k em if they can’t take a joke!  Here’s the bear . . .

Now, I’m afraid to tell you folks, but I’m currently on a watercolor class buying binge.   I just got a shitload of various watercolor papers from Cheap Joes.   Not so cheap, I might add!  🙂  I placed another order today. 

It’s as bad as fabric buying….except on some level you have to do some work or else it’s just tablets of blank paper.  At least fabric is fun to look at!

My Hood


  On my way home from the show, I passed this tractor in a field near Pickle Road.  I don’t know why, but I stopped to take a photo.  

Here’s another of the same field.  I can hardly believe that they’re bailing hay already

Later, munchkins! 


That damn venomous raccoon is eating my chickens again! 

     I think the little mofuis living UNDER my potting shed!   Damn it!   I caught him in the pen last night at around midnight and startled him (I almost wet myself among other things, speaking of startled) and he was HUGE!   He dove under the potting shed.  

     My chickens –10 chickens (was 13 but that fricking beast “felt like chicken tonight!”) were having post-tramatic stress.  

 Now,  you know daddy has to set a trap for this chicken killing varment.  And I’m a little rusty.  I haven’t set a trap since I caught JEFF!  

(Oh, I just told him I was pregnant.  Men– gay, straight or otherwise, they ALWAYS fall for that line!)




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30 Comments on “NJ Quilt Convention et al”

  1. Sandi
    June 18, 2008 at 11:46 PM #

    Oh, wow, “eye candy galore”!!! No way I could pick a favorite “one”, so I picked three – I love scrappy quilts and thought the quilt by Susan McDermott “A Little Bit of American History” was beautiful. It was patriotic without being so bright red, bright white, bright blue. Next one I liked was Dot’s quilt. Loved the applique and felt like I was looking into a window of floral bouquets, well, and one house. For “awesomeness”, the celestial quilt by Anna Faustino was amazing. So was her quilt of the guy in the vineyard. My choice for “most charming” has to go to that little guy Brian and his enthusiasm for his quilt!


  2. kim
    June 19, 2008 at 12:11 AM #

    Didn’t you just love the word search puzzle by Mary. Hubby was in awe of the applique and Mark Mary did the pomegranetes quilt also. She and Barb are just so talented.


  3. Mary Ellen Tardiff
    June 19, 2008 at 12:28 AM #

    THANK YOU for the eye candy! OMG – what a bunch of truly talented people. And, I’ll just bet Dot is looking down from heaven and enjoying the comments people had to be making about her quilt. The lady who won a ribbon and is just “shy” of 100 — may we all be that talented and live that long! Way to go! And what quilter couldn’t enjoy the enthusiasm of Brian. I agree. You gotta love that kid! His sister’s headed in the right direction, too!! (obviously some good parenting going on)

    Petunia really fits the new member of the family. And, oh my!!! The photo of Jeff holding her, it really shocked me to see how little she is! What a true love. Bet you could hide her in a sweater pocket and take her everywhere!

    The tractor photo and field – they make me want to visit my sister in PA. I love the country!! Beautiful shots, by the way.

    You’re poor chickens. I’ll just bet they are in shock – especially if he thinks he’s going to live under the potting shed. That will NEVER do. By the way, did you tell Jeff you were pregnant to put him in as much shock as the poor chickens! He’s going to have to have his own blog so we can give him a bit of sympathy!

    Keep up the great photos! And thanks!


    • Ann Marie Dudek
      November 10, 2009 at 3:24 PM #

      I am trying to contact Barbara Vedder. I saw her quilt Fine Feathered Fourth at the Brownstone Quilters Guild Show this weekend and loved it. It would be perfect for my son in the army. I would like to know where I can purchase the pattern.

      Tank you for your help

      Ann Marie


  4. barb vedder
    June 19, 2008 at 12:35 AM #

    hey mark –
    Nice quilt show coverage – as Kim already noted it was Mary Vaughan who made the pomegranate quilt – it’s a beaut!
    congrats on the new pup –
    good luck with the chickens-
    barb (aka miss thang – i like it)


  5. Mary Vaughan
    June 19, 2008 at 1:24 AM #

    Hi Mark. Thanks for the great photos and mentioning my quilts. It was a good show!
    Your son must have gone to Lake Drive School?


  6. ABB
    June 19, 2008 at 1:33 AM #

    Better hope Linda doesn’t whack you over the head with a frying pan for that “just shy of 100”!!

    Love the Petunia, and I’m sure she fits her name very well. How goes the housetraining (aka peepoo patrol)?

    Love Gloria’s quilt, as well as Linda’s. Thanks for the pics, esp since I didn’t end up going 😦

    If you do succeed n trapping the raccoon, you need to drive at least 20 miles away to release it. It worked for us. Well, that and the rifle. Apparently raccoons don’t do too much damage after they’ve been shot.

    Nothing in the trap last night, but when I catch him/her I’m bringing him/her to your house! That’s about 20 miles, isn’t it? xoxom


  7. June 19, 2008 at 3:49 AM #

    Bloody hell that’s a lot to take in!! 😀

    There’s a truck load of talent there, which is fantastic to see – especially quilters going beyond their comfort zones/ thinking outside the square/ broadening their horizons etc etc etc… and yet the more traditional quilts have been made with such skill. *sigh* I think I’ll just remain sitting on this fence here.

    Your watercolour does not suck! I’m sure you know how difficult it can be to master anyway, you’ll get there.

    Little Petuni is a sweetie, the long-haired are much prettier the the short-haired I reckon, and she’ll get over her shyness soon enough! 🙂

    I LOVE Petuni! Looks like I found a nickname as well! xoxom


  8. June 19, 2008 at 11:40 AM #

    Mark! Hon…est…ly! The bear is charming. It would also make a great baby quilt.

    Love the blog and thank you so much for the quilt pics – I didn’t get to go this year and was having withdrawal symptoms. 🙂


  9. June 19, 2008 at 5:58 PM #

    Thanks for sharing the photos with us. When we just can’t make it to a show, somewhere on the web there is a show and share for all to see.


  10. June 19, 2008 at 6:51 PM #

    Great pictures of the quilt show. Your blog is always hysterical and lifts my spirits every time. Love Petunia.


  11. Chary Root
    June 19, 2008 at 10:00 PM #

    So glad that the name Petunia won. If ever there was a little dog that should be named Petunia– that’s her.
    Quilts were beautiful. Thanks for sharing them with us.


  12. June 20, 2008 at 4:05 AM #

    How about Little Petooti Petuni? 😉


  13. BCQuilter
    June 20, 2008 at 7:26 PM #

    Mark, I can see why you had so many quilts you liked. They are amazing.

    Raccoons are my bane as well. We had one in broad daylight try to take our chickens. We were able to chase him out… but he finally got one. Amazingly enough we are getting more eggs from them… we suspect she was our egg eater.

    Petunia is quite petite. Out in the garden it was not so obvious… but wow. She’s still very much adorable.

    Mark, I am quite taken with your thumbnail water colour. Do you remember your first quilt? or your first “out-of-comfort-zone” quilt? Everything requires practise. You’ll do fine! Just keep practising, and your technique and skill will come through.



  14. Bonnie/Mary
    June 20, 2008 at 9:05 PM #

    I think I’ll drop off a cast iron skillet for Linda, just in case she doesn’t have one handy!
    I still think Poppy is the correct name for your new little one 😉


  15. Mary Lou Eustace
    June 21, 2008 at 12:09 PM #

    What an adorable puppy! Mark, have you lost weight? You look great in that picture.


  16. karin
    June 22, 2008 at 12:13 AM #

    chipotle isNOT junk food(compared to taco swell)! and i just might have to sic
    the spelling police on ya,dude. loved the bit about telling jeff you were pregnant, though.
    and now for something completely different,…how’s therapy?


  17. June 22, 2008 at 5:02 PM #

    Hey Mark,
    Thanks for the great pictures from the show. You were so good to include the makers and all, that is excellent.
    And I think your watercolor looks GREAT….I have always wanted to paint…guess I better start painting more than houses and lawn furniture.

    I can definitely relate to the chicken killer angst. We lost all of ours last year to some dogs that broke into the yard and killed them ALL….this year the new batch lives in a newly remodeled chicken fortress….
    Get that raccoon!!!

    I think our pet rat Oreo is about the same size as Petunia…she is adorable!


  18. Lori Roth
    June 23, 2008 at 11:40 AM #

    Thanx for the Quilt Show Coverage. I was in Washington,DC with family and missed it. Boohoo. But enjoyed your photos and commentary. Love Mary V and Barb V quilts. Watched them in the making and was WOWed by them in their finished form. The NY Beauty quilts are my passion. I love the color and pattern mix. I’m a brights person too! But I’m sure you already knew that.
    Love the new addition- Petunia, the chickens and that rascal ” chicken bandit”.
    Hope you have a great summer. Looking forward to hearing about Evan too.


  19. June 23, 2008 at 4:53 PM #

    Thanks so much for the awesome mini quilt show! Your puppy is adorable. I feel your angst about watercolor painting–I took some classes some years back and it really gave me a HUGE appreciation for the talent of those people who can do it well! (I am not one of those people!) On a final note, I might be the one person in the US who hates racoons more than you! Damn those no-good horrible critters–hope you catch the rotten bugger and relocate him to Afghanistan or some such suitable locale–let him find out what it’s like to be the hunted rather than the hunter! (Yikes–I’m feeling rather fiesty today or something!)


  20. June 24, 2008 at 12:08 AM #

    Thanks for the tour….I was not able to get there this year which killed me since I live so close but you sure gave me a nice taste of what was there…


  21. June 24, 2008 at 2:19 PM #

    Thanks so much for the mini quilt show. The quilts are fabulous and I loved looking at them through your eyes! Welcome to the world Petunia a perfect name for a precious little pup. Will you be attending obedience shool with her? She will need to train you properly.


    PS. I met you at quilt market last fall..I’m sure you remember me! haha will look you up again this fall.


  22. June 24, 2008 at 6:15 PM #

    Hands down, I love that NJ Beauty–the intense colors, the shading from brights to deeper shades, and the precision. That’s the yummiest for me. Gotta share that I participated in my first shop hop this past week–Mountain Quilt Quest in WV. My shop hop story is the current headliner at http://www.planetpatchwork.com Awesome creativity out there in West Virginia! Theme quilt was a bakers dozen of basket patches, and the sampler quilt was set differently by each shop staff–13 ways to pack those baskets!


  23. June 25, 2008 at 12:19 AM #

    Thanks for the quilt show and OMgosh, Petunia is adorable.


  24. June 28, 2008 at 1:49 PM #

    Petunia is adorable!!! You’ll have to let me know if she truly IS non-yappy. Too damn cute! And love the quilts!!! ‘Supercalifragilisticexpealidocious’ is wonderful!!! And also really really loved ‘A Little Bit of American History’, and of course anything with Kaffe fabrics usually rocks my world too. Thanks so much for the ‘show’!



  25. July 10, 2008 at 1:02 PM #

    So cute, your little dog…. thanks for Photos


  26. July 21, 2008 at 7:52 PM #

    Hi Mark! Just dropping by to say, I miss you and hope your summer is going swimmingly well 🙂


  27. July 28, 2008 at 4:16 AM #

    Where’s Mark ???? Miss your bloggin self.


  28. August 8, 2008 at 4:29 AM #

    I actually think your teddy bear thumbnail is well-done. And I LOVE buying art supplies, doesn’t it make you feel so…. artistic?? Meanwhile, I found your blog because I was trying to find a blog for Barbara Brown Esserman, whose quilt “Fun Color Go-Round” you have posted in this post. But alas, I cannot find a blog or website for her. I also went to the NJ Quilt Convention, it is interesting to see all the quilts you liked, I liked most of those too though I didn’t photograph some of them for some reason. I like to read other people’s reviews of the same events I attended, it’s like revisiting it all over but from a different perspective.


  29. Sally
    August 22, 2008 at 11:30 PM #

    I received the new issue of Quilters Home so I know you are still alive-but where are you? I miss your blog.


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