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The Virtual Quilt, A Newsletter for Computing Quilters

Number Twenty-Seven* October 1,1998

Classifieds | Table of Contents

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Ribbonry Visited, Quilting Begun, Free Stuff!

The Artful Ribbon, by Candace Kling
C&T Publishing, 1996
144 pages, $25.95

Art & Inspirations: Judith Baker Montano
C&T Publishing, 1997
144 pages, $19.95

A Passion for Ribbonry, by Camela Nitschke
Martingale & Company, PasTimes Imprint
144 Pages, $29.95

Christmas Ribbonry, by Camela Nitschke
Martingale & Company, PasTimes Imprint
128 Pages, $29.95

By Lynn Holland

Ribbons are traditional symbols of femininity. Many baby girls leave the hospital with bows snapped, velcroed or pasted (!) to their heads as a means of announcing their gender. It is no wonder that as adults, women are still drawn to the beauty of ribbon as an adornment for their clothing, accessories and homes. Several new books offer a luscious look at ribbonry. Even if you have little or no interest in mastering the craft yourself, they are pictorially rich and worth a look.

The Artful Ribbon by Candace Kling is a great primer for the novice and has enough tips and tricks in the text to offer the more advanced ribboniere instruction as well. There's an early chapter entitled "Starting Simple", which takes us through the easiest blossoms. Other chapters cover more difficult models and techniques. Her copy is broken into readable chunks with large topic headings and lots of visually friendly white space. Photographs are interspersed with text and illustrations, giving this book a unique format. The illustrations and explanations are clear, and the photographs show fabulous antique and modern ribbon designs from a variety of collections. Ms. Kling encourages us to accept our own creative sensibilities and doesn't offer us projects to "copy", just a book full of ribbon blossoms accompanied by enough friendly advice and confidence building instruction to get us going. There's an index in the back, along with an annotated list of ribbon supply sources.

Two books by Camela Nitschke, A Passion for Ribbonry and Christmas Ribbonry, share the same visual lushness as Candace Kling's book, but have a slightly different focus. Ms Nitschke is certainly interested in ribbonry and runs a store of the same name in Perrysburg, Ohio. However, Ms Nitschke's works focus more on her artistry than on developing the talents of the reader. Both of Nitschke's books offer a wonderful showcase of her gorgeous home and workplace, and yes, do include instructions for replicating some of her opulent designs. However, much of these books remind me of a Tour of Homes. We are allowed to wander through the lifestyle of the rich and famous, but few of us ever hope to own what we view. One particularly lovely mantle decoration requires 60 yards of ribbon for the main blooms alone and we can pretty much guess we will not find this material on clearance in our lifetimes. Almost half of her first book is devoted to the history of ribbons and her life of privilege, with beautiful photography included. On page 68 of 140 in A Passion for Ribbonry we finally get to the how tos. To her credit the instructions are clearly illustrated and well described so that if we ever got our hands on some pricey stuff from Camela's shop we would not ruin it And for those of us with no imagination, Nitschke's project instructions relieve us of having to be original and allow us to create some beautiful items.

Truthfully, I tend to like books that offer some autobiographical information and artist's comments and insights along with instructions. One such book related to ribbonry is Judith Baker Montano's book from C&T's Art Inspirations series. Anyone who loves Montano's creations will find this book wonderfully forthright and forthcoming about her background, her artistic development and her own creative processes. Even though Baker-Montano comes from a well-to-do Canadian family that once owned the Bar U Ranch, her book makes you feel right at home. She talks freely about influences on her life and work and discusses her techniques in some detail. The book is a work of art itself, with Baker Montano's work, vintage photos and odd and ends of memorabilia decorating each page, along with family members modeling various creations.

However, Nitschke's ramblings about her one-of-a-kind dresses as a child and spending quiet evenings reading in the library of her home are more off-putting than endearing. Quite possibly, Nitschke has as interesting a story to tell as Baker-Montano, and the intent of her books may have been to tell it. However, rather than draw us into her world and her development as an artist, her books keep us at arm's length. As beautifully photographed as these two books are and as lovely as Nitschke's ribbon work is, I have difficulty liking these books, and feeling comfortable with them. Nevertheless, they are gorgeous books to view, and worth a look if you, too, have a passion for ribbonry.

Your First Quilt Book (or it should be!)
by Carol Doak
That Patchwork Place, 1997
224 pages, $19.95

Reviewed by Christina Holland

This wasn't my first quilt book. That (dubious) honor goes to Start Quilting, by Alex Anderson, which is a fine book with fun and simple projects. Since then I have read a few others, and I've picked up a few tricks through observation combined with trial and error. However, almost everything I've learned so far seems to be included in Your First Quilt Book (or it should be!). So I guess it should have been.

The very first thing in the book is a diagram and glossary of common terms, to enable the tourist and the new immigrant to pick up the language of quilt-land. I admit to not knowing before this book exactly what "quilt-as-you-go" meant (see page 12).

Next, the reader is introduced to fabrics. This section explores the right and wrong ways of juxtaposing fabrics of various color value, contrast, and type and size of prints. This is the only chapter other than the gallery to feature color pictures, and she's not miserly about it. I count 20 color photos in 7 pages, plus assorted gray scale diagrams, illustrating the effects of different choices (example: "the green in the first group (top) is too intense for the colors in the other fabrics. The green in the second group (bottom) works better because it is similar in intensity.") or defining textures (calicos, mini-prints, airy, dot, geometric, and so on). And, Carol Doak even deals with what to do if you run out of one of the fabrics in the middle of a project.

After fabrics, naturally, comes an introduction to tools. This is a short but informative section. I tend to think that for a beginning quilt book, the list of recommended tools is a bit too comprehensive. I certainly don't own everything on this list, yet I've managed to produce 2 full size quilts and a handful of miniatures. The list could also use some prioritizing - it's not alphabetical, or, in my opinion, in order of importance. First come graph paper and colored pencils, while items such as scissors, seam ripper, rotary cutter, cutting mat and rotary rulers come at the end - after "miscellaneous".

Once you know the language, the fabric, and the tools, you're ready to go. First, though, there's the chapter on patchwork block designs, which also tells how to draw any block any size without unwieldy math, and the chapter on patchwork technique, which in the beginning is as much a discussion of philosophy as anything else. Definitely take the time to take the "preference test", on the question of hand versus machine piecing. For the record, I am a machine piecer - but now I know why.

Your First Quilt Book (or it should be!) provides 8 different projects, all of which are simple enough for a beginner yet interesting enough to be worth doing. The projects are chosen to include a variety of techniques. Some use templates, some use sequences of cuts (cut a 3-1/2" square, then cut it in half diagonally to make 2 triangles). Techniques such as laying out on point, strip piecing, sashing, and corner squares are highlighted. There's a gallery with a color photo of each project, and detailed step by step instructions. One especially nice thing is that in the margin of each page in the projects sections are two drawings of what your stitch should look like, whether it is done by hand or by machine.

This book also includes a good discussion of whether to hand quilt, machine quilt, or tie, and how to proceed in each case. Finally, binding is explained, and the book closes with a collection of templates, a collection of quilting designs, and a list of suggested further reading.

Bottom line: you probably should buy this book. If you are about to start your first quilt, this will get you through it. If you've already done your first 1, 2, or 20 quilts, but still have to look through your entire quilting library to figure out the measurements for setting triangles or the proper way to sew along the bias, this will provide some welcome consolidation. However, this is not your last quilt book. The selection of patchwork blocks is kind of skimpy, and many great techniques, such as paper piecing, are totally ignored. This book can only cover so much, but it does a very good job as a beginner book.

Free Stuff for Quilters on the Internet
By Judy Heim and Gloria Hansen
C&T Publishing, 1998
174 pages, $16.95

Reviewed by Rob Holland

Judy Heim and Gloria Hansen have become the gurus of computer and internet use for quilters. Their last book, "A Quilter's Computer Companion," brought a vast array of useful information together in one place on how computers can enhance our quilting. In this new book they focus more narrowly on the internet and provide a practical, useful volume that fits nicely in that little bit of space between your computer and those piles of papers. My copy shows the effects of liberal thumbing as I cruise to all the wonderful sites they list and annotate.

"Free Stuff" is a well-organized and sprightly compendium of web and maillist resources for quilters. It is laid out in such logical categories as "Quilt Patterns," "Quilt Fabric and Batting Advice," "Sewing Machine Help" and dozens of other useful subjects. Judy and Gloria comment on each site, often showing their trademark sense of humor. Perhaps as useful as their website annotations are the chapters of general guidance and advice for quilters on the 'net. Especially if you are a newcomer, such topics as "Anatomy of a Web Browser" and "How to Download Software from the Internet" are indispensable. They also address the subject of "channels," a new way of receiving information over the 'net, and the controversial and much-misunderstood topic of cookies. Should you accept them or should you reject them? You might be surprised by the answer.

Although quilters thrive on practical advice, there is a larger dimension to the art which needs nurturing as well -- the creative process. Perhaps my favorite chapter is near the end of the book. Entitled "Help Keeping the Creative Fire Burning," it contains a selection of quite remarkable links which should assist quilters in this somewhat mysterious area.

Most TVQ readers have been on the internet for a while, and would benefit greatly from this book. But if you have a friend who's been resisting your urgings to "get with the internet program," a gift of this book may be the way to convince her!



"Breaking Traditions" Cathedral Windows Quick Method Quilt book was created to cut the level of difficulty and time required by the traditional method of making this beloved quilt. Full color cover, clear directions, measurement charts and many illustrations guide new and seasoned quilters to make a durable masterpiece entirely by sewing machine. U.S. residents can own this one-of-a-kind quilt book for only $8.95 each plus postage and handling ($1.95 for one copy, $0.45 for each additional). Send check or money order to:

Bountiful Press
P.O Box 130197
Tampa, FL 33681-0197

Others write or e-mail for price.

For more information visit our website at

Greenhaven Enterprises

Quilt Retreats on the Olympic Peninsula

Visiting Washington State?? Stay with a quilter and her cat, Oliver.

The Herbolds live just outside of Sunny Sequim. Their home, set in the tall trees, is warm, pleasant, and affordable.

Norma can direct you to quilt shops in the area, plus the natural wonders located on the Olympic Peninsula. She can also plan a personal retreat for you and three quilting friends, or cross stitch buddies, or rubber stampers! You name it.

You are invited to visit the website for Greenhaven Enterprises, Quilt Retreats on the Olympic Peninsula, where you can check out Norma's quilts, learn more about Sequim, and of course, see Oliver.

You may email Norma at or call 360-681-0364 for more information.


Beautiful hand Dyed Fabric perfect for piecing, applique and pictorial quilts. Colors range from a sunrise spectrum of mauves, pinks, and golds to deep purples, blues and teals. Available in the following convenient packages:

8 step color progression- fat eighth cuts- 1 yard $25.00
12 step color wheel- 6"x22"cuts 1 yard $25.00
24 step color wheel- 6"x22" cuts 2 yards $45.00
  10" squares 1.5 yards $35.00

Send a self addressed, stamped envelope for free samples and full price list or to order send check or money order to:

Jay Dee Designs
18640 South Lowrie Loop
Eagle River, Alaska 99577


PCQuilt for Windows

PCQuilt for Windows is easy to learn and easy to use quilting software. The block and the quilt are on the same screen so you can see your quilt emerge as you design and color your blocks. Combine blocks in a variety of ways to see endless new designs. The program includes all the features that have always made PCQuilt easy and fun to use. Now with the new Windows version, PCQuilt will help you estimate your yardage, print templates, quilts and blocks, and has a friendly Windows interface with easy to use toolbars. PCQuilt comes with a extensive library of blocks, border, quilts, palettes and fabric patterns. PCQuilt is also available for the Macintosh. Look for PCQuilt at your local Husqvarna VIKING Dealer or visit our web site at .

Nina Antze
7061 Lynch Road
Sebastopol, CA 95472


The Feedsack Club is delighted to announce that it will once again hold a conference concurrently with the Quilters Heritage Celebration in Lancaster PA on April 8 - 10 1999.

The conference continues to grow in size each year and has moved to the Holiday Inn at 521 Greenfield Rd, Lancaster PA, just down the street from the Quilters Heritage Celebration and across from the Tourist Bureau. The additional room at the new location means that we can offer even MORE exhibits, lectures and demonstrations as well as our Antique Quilt Show and Feedsack Memorabilia display.

Barb Garrett, a local quilt historian, will reprise her excellent lecture on the History of Quilting as Told Through Doll Quilts, with more than 50 doll quilts on display. Other lectures and classes are planned, including new products demonstrations - come and learn about Gridded Geese & Thangles. Events include the Show & Share, Raffles, a quilt contest, an auction, and, of course, vendors! Throughout the convention, look for buying, selling and trading of feedsacks and other fun stuff as well as door prizes. Quilt appraisals by AQS certified appraiser Deborah Roberts will also be available by appointment. For more information, E-mail .

DESERT THREADS Custom Embroidery and Screenprinting

Want to make a splash at the next guild meeting or quilt show? We embroider Ocean Waves, Jacob's Ladder, Shoo-fly and three other popular quilt designs on t-shirts, sweatshirts, and large zippered tote bags. Available in a variety of colors on six different colored garments, these designs will be the envy of your quilting friends.

We also specialize in custom logos for quilt guilds and businesses. Also available are quality embroidered custom labels for quilt backs. No minimum quantity is required and vendor inquiries are welcome.

E-mail us for more information at or visit our website at

You can take a look at our designs and order online using our automated form.

Desert Threads 195 Regier Springs Drive Sparks, NV 89436 (702) 425-2726


We are a cottage industry located just outside of Yosemite National Park. We specialize in clothing and patterns for quilters and for people who love quilts.

We offer t-shirts and sweatshirts in sizes from medium to xxx-large. All of our quilts are machine pieced. Most of our patterns are easy enough for beginning quilters. The photo at right shows our watercolor sweatshirt called "Kristie's Watercolor." There are 361 pieces in the quilt. Come see what else we have to offer at our website at !

Or e-mail for more information to

The Quilt Block P.O. Box 127 Midpines, CA 95345

(209) 742-5418 Fax: (209) 742-7662


Combining the best features of metal and leather thimbles, My Favorite Thimble's tough, colorful, rubbery surface grips the needle for wonderful stitch control, while the metal base guarantees that you never have to worry about sticking your finger. This thimble is a breeze to pick up or put down when you need to switch to another task.

My Favorite Thimble comes in two styles. You can choose between the standard royal blue, and my new embellished version on which I have added colorful free-form designs. Both styles work equally well, the embellished one just puts a smile on your face.

NEWS FLASH!! My Favorite Thimble now has a new Web Site with more products, answers to your Frequently Asked Questions, and a monthly newsletter. If you order from our new site at and mention Planet Patchwork, we will send you a FREE package of 5 Thread Maid thread organizers. Questions or comments? - email us at . Or, to order by snail mail, send check for $6.00 for the classic Blue or $10.00 for the Embellished My Favorite Thimble with your choice of size (petite, small, medium, large or x-large) to:

Chris Hanner & Company
3687 Coldwater Lane
Snellville, GA 30039


The MINI DUST-IT. Genuine sheepskin duster on a 6" stick that is perfect for picking up dust and lint from your sewing machine and serger. Soft, beautiful sheepskin won't scratch polished surfaces. Picks up the lint and tiny threads; doesn't spread them around. Prevents lint build-up. Inexpensive way to protect expensive sewing machines and sergers. Fun and handy to use. Also works great on the computer.

Price: $3.50 each including mailing.

To order send check to Silver Dollar Sheep Station, 5020 Winding Way, Sacramento, CA 95841. 800-887-8742. E-mail:

SPECIAL LIMITED TIME OFFER: Because we manufacture the Mini Dust-it to a very high standard, we currently have a supply of  imperfects. They may be thinner and not as pretty or have some other defect, but they still work great! And best of all we offer these to you for just $1, including postage. You can order them at the address above and enjoy this wonderful product at a bargain price!


Look forward to next year's 12 new original patterns!

Sign up before the end of the year for our 1999 - QuiltBroker Block of the Month Program. Next year will continue in the fine tradition of half-square triangle patterns that you have enjoyed this year. If you sign up for the yearly program, before December 31st, you will save MONEY! See details at our web site:

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!
Heidi Wurst, owner


Quilt Shop Service -- Discount Prices

20% off retail on most items

When you visit PineTree Quiltworks' website catalog, don't forget to check out the Virtual Fabric store, where fabric is discounted! With more than 2500 bolts on the floor, more fabric goes on the website catalog each week, at prices 20% off retail.

Don't miss PineTree's **New** Stash Stockers(tm), the exciting selections of six fat quarters from top manufacturers!

PineTree now carries the complete line of EQ software, including New SEW PRECISE stand-alone software for foundation piecing. You'll find it with EQ 3 and Block Base software and the books, TOO MUCH FUN, EQ3 SIMPLIFIED The Basics, and the EQ3 BLOCK BOOK.

PineTree is proud to offer Quilter's Cotton fine cotton batts as well as the full lines of Hobbs' and Fairfield's cottons, blends, and polys. Look for tools to make applique easier and more fun; fabric and hand care products; pencils and markers; templates and template plastic; needlecraft gloves; rotary cutters and related supplies; rippers, clippers, snippers, and scissors; machine sewing needles; seven (!) brands of hand sewing needles -- including Jeana Kimball's renowned Foxglove Cottage needles; basting systems; thread, including Mettler and Gutermann cotton sewing and quilting, Tire silk sewing, and Sulky rayon, metallic, and sliver, and *new* Roxy 100% cotton thread on economical 1200-yard spools; patterns ... and

There are many more books at PineTree than you'll find in the books listing online, so if you don't see what you want, e-mail and ask. All books are discounted 20%.

Just scope out the website catalog at and place your credit card order from the ***new*** secure website order form. Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover are welcome.

Free with each order a hard copy of the catalog and a Mettler thread color card!

PineTree is online to answer questions about quilting products at


Gridded Geese(c) is a unique paper foundation method for mass-producing Flying Geese units up to 24 at once (no kidding!). Schoolhouse Enterprises, inventors and manufacturers of this revolutionary product, offers both an on-line ( ) and printed version of their catalog.

The folks at Schoolhouse Enterprises and Planet Patchwork search for items for quilters (and friends of quilters) which are unique and often overlooked by other catalogs you might connect with. Check out their on-line catalog, which offers such interesting items as Photos-to-Fabric(tm) photo transfer paper, Ott Lights, and Planet Patchwork t-shirts, sweats, and tote bags... all at discounted prices! And while you're visiting, be sure to check out the current Monthly $pecial!!

...And in case you haven't heard, Schoolhouse Enterprises is now even better! They now offer an on-line shopping cart service in conjunction with Planet Patchwork. You can safely order online through Planet Patchwork's secure server with your credit card!

If you're not able to access the web page, just e-mail Schoolhouse Enterprises ( ) with your "snail mail" (post office) address for your FREE CATALOG and Sample of Gridded Geese(c)! (Sorry, but Samples are only available in the printed catalogs.)


Perfect Square's mother is pregnant and about to have a new product. Perfect Triangle is due any day now. Perfect Triangle is also a REUSABLE iron-on design but it will make quarter square triangles instead of half-square triangles.

Perfect Square is growing up now and has gotten a job at a creative quilt pattern company and is doing quite well. In fact, patterns are being written exclusively for Perfect Square. See the Perfect Square web site at fore details.


Our advertisers, both here in the newsletter and at the Planet Patchwork website, have found TVQ to be an effective and economical way to reach thousands of online quilters. Ads in the newsletter are only $5 each (up to 100 words, inquire about longer ads) or 3 for $10, and there are also attractive packages available which combine newsletter and website ads. For more information e-mail or visit We specialize in helping small quilting-related businesses gain exposure on the internet.

In This Issue:

Following is a list of the rest of the stories in this issue of TVQ. In order to read them, you must be a subscriber. Subscribing online here and following up with the small subscription fee will entitle you to eight issues of TVQ, including this one. You will receive TVQ every six weeks by e-mail, and will be issued a password to access it here at Planet Patchwork.

Subscribers: Please report any password problems to Rob Holland. Be sure to include your name & e-mail address. We will try to resolve all password problems within 24 hours. Thank you!

And here's what's inside!

  • The Patchwork Planet: Quilting in Hungary

Kinga Tibor shares with TVQ readers news of the new and growing quilting community in Hungary. For Kinga it began with an American movie.

  • Calendar Review

AQS's new 1999 calendar has a quilt for all seasons.

  • Quilter Profile: Suzanne Marshall

Master applique artist and originator of her own unique technique, Suzanne Marshall continues to challenge herself, and us,with new ideas and approaches.

  • More! Quilt events in San Jose, Golden, Columbia, Paducah, and elsewhere!


Like any news publication, TVQ is always hungry for information about new developments in the area we are trying to cover. If you have an idea for a story, or want to tell the world about something you are doing which relates to computers and quilting, we'd like to hear about it.

We'd like news of new classes starting up to teach quilt design on computers, or new approaches to that teaching. New products, maillists, World Wide Web pages, etc., are all fair game, and we'd appreciate any tips you can provide. Send your tips by e-mail to

If you have a comment about an article, a complaint or a correction, we're glad to hear that, too, and may publish some comments as letters to the editor. Again, these may be sent to

Editor and Publisher: Robert Holland, Decatur, GA

1998 by Robert Holland. All rights reserved. This file may not be reproduced in any form except to be printed out for the personal use of its owner without the expressed, written consent of the copyright holder.


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