The start of a new quilt is always exciting for me.  I draft the pattern, then redraft it, then re-work it, then re-design it …….. you get the picture!  When I’m finally happy with the rough draft, I then spend time drawing each shape to how I see it in my mind’s eye.  This is the part of the designing process that I enjoy the most.  Once that’s done I’m happy – I have my quilt down on paper!  As I have a day job I then have to wait for a free day – usually on a weekend if I’m not teaching somewhere – as I much prefer to choose fabrics during the day with natural sunlight

Then comes the process of choosing – and playing – with fabric.  This too is fun.  I try and limit myself to a certain number of fabrics.  I choose from my large and extensive stash (don’t we all have them?), say 10 each of the colours that I’m going to work with.  I try not to vary from these fabrics…… so I don’t do that agonising over fabric choices that I once used to.

My fabric choices for Tulips - I know it looks messy but............

Then is the fun part –  cutting and gluing.  I love this part the best because I know that I can soon start sewing!!  Yeah!!

All ready for cutting - of course I can't do without my music!

I used to be quite messy with my designing.  I’d start with lots of A4 papers with scribbles all over them which I’d then put into a plastic envelope.  The last quilt I did made me realise how difficult it was trying to understand some of my scribbles as well as keeping track of all my papers.  I then took a leaf out of Margaret’s book and decided to be more organised.  So now I have a “design book” – which sounds very professional and makes me feel as if I am a “professional designer” instead of a “dabbler”!

By the way the new quilt will be called TULIPA – named with the help of my friends who came to the Craft Retreat with me.  I find naming quilts quite difficult and wish I was more inspired with this.


  1. After the brain storming at our retreat, glad you decided on “Tulipa”. Can’t wait to see the quilt.
    Happy stitching

  2. Hi Irene,
    We met at CAG and I have finally started your “Floral Beauty” quilt. I have just discovered your blog and want to welcome you to “blogland”.

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