I enjoy photography and have for years. Some quilts over the years were inspired by a photo - and some photos were used to create the pattern for a pictorial quilt. Several years ago I purchased a large format printer so that I could blend my passion for photography with quilting.

Asternoon Delight began as a photo that I took of a cluster of asters with a butterfly perched on top. The photograph was manipulated in photoshop with another photo of wood grain superimposed on top - using a montage technique - to create the swirls and swoops in the background. The image was printed full size onto whole cloth and then heavily free-motion quilted to add texture and detail.

Printing on fabric is not an easy process because the color profiles will not generally give rich deep color - but using a proper profile, I’m able to print with successful accurate and intense color. It won an honorable mention in Houston a few years ago.

If you notice a couple of leaves on the main branch (bottom left), they are not ‘there’ in the photo, but they are ‘stitched’ into the image with the quilting process.

The most fun I had with this quilt was naming it. I asked my friends on Facebook for suggestions. The name I liked the most was Asternoon Delight - but the one that made me laugh the most was Kiss My Aster. So I generally call it the former in print, but use the later when I’m talking about the quilt.


Click the 9-patch grid to change number of pieces. Click the circle arrow to make the puzzle pieces rotating instead of stable orientation. Also, there are tips under the "?" on the upper right of the puzzle. If you'd like a full screen version, click the button below. Have fun!



Have you ever had a quilt almost cross the finish line only to be tucked away...unfinished? That’s what happened with this quilt, Chamisa Corral. It is based on a photo I took of the old cowboy corral located on my parcel in the Colorado mountains. The rock formation is called Autumn Rock and stands about 90’ tall. At the base of the rock are the ruins of a stone cabin and an old corral that was used for breaking horses. There is a spring fed stream nearby.

Both the cabin and the corral have seen better days but they are a great reminder of life many years ago in a remote area. At 8900 feet elevation, no doubt this was a summer camp for the cowboys. Winters would have been too harsh to live this remote.

Most of the old posts of the corral burned in the Spring wildfire of 2018. Only the center post and one other post remain now. While I wasn't able to locate the original photo from 2002 that I used for this quilt, I was able to find a photo of the posts before they burned - facing the Wet Valley rather than toward Autumn Rock. In this photo, the tufts of yellow flowers have turned into faded puffs of gray. Below is a photo of chamisa in bloom.

I started this quilt with the base fabric used in the sky and layered the appliqué on top. At some point I recall becoming unhappy with this quilt and set it aside, only using it as an example of how I use snippets or confetti pieces for appliqué. Several years later I began teaching/preaching "FINISH" things. If they are close to the finish line you will feel great about it. Taking my own advice, I pulled this quilt out and got to work. To my surprise, I started liking what was happening an in only one day this quilt was finished. It sat dormant for about 12 years - and now... I love it. I hope you do too.

The Message: Not all project should be finished - but there are some that are close to the finish line. Get busy and finish one. It is good medicine for your soul and spirit.

First, the background fabric was stabilized from beneath with a layer of cotton batting and a medium weight tear away stabilizer. I then used a raw edge (no fusible) scribble appliqué technique to create the design. While some may think the quilt is thread painted, it’s really appliqué that is stitched down with thread (and embellished with thread) using free-motion stitching. In some cases I favored really large stitches to get the desired effect.

Fun fact: In the Southwest, Chamisa is a wild shrub brush also known as Rabbitbrush. It is a bushy plant with yellow tufts of fluffy flowers in late summer. When the first snows come, it will blanket on top of the fading flowers. It grows abundantly in the old corral.









First Place


by Kathy Hammond


Artist statement:  This little quilt was a  blessing.  During a time of worry I could go into a zone of "what's next", "what will I try that could be fun"?  I forgot for a short time that my husband could become very ill if he caught Covid-19, I also put BLM on the back burner (my grandkids are dark skinned and this whole movement is very important to us, but there are those out there who would disagree and have made their lives miserable).  The quilt is made with Ricky Tims hand dyed fabric scraps, black cotton fabric, and cotton batting.  It is an improv piece (no rulers were used of course) and quilted on my faithful home sewing machine.


Tiny Bubbles
by Lynn Randall
Honorable Mention


by Carol Moellers
Honorable Mention


Beach Dreams 
by Teresa Stoller
Honorable Mention




Second Place 


by Denese DeGrandis

Artist Statement: This year our lives have been rocked by challenges that leave us wondering how best to move forward. A horrific pandemic, devastating natural disasters and societal struggles for long overdue change. We find ourselves missing what we cannot have; time with our loved ones and friends in person. However, being grateful that we can, at least, FaceTime, Zoom and message. Our so-called new normal has given us a lot to reflect upon.

I wanted my quilt challenge to clearly and visually state the importance of how simple actions can help us navigate through these crises. Searching for the right words led me to the idea of creating a word search quilt.

In order to keep the quilt within the allowable size for the challenge my nine patch squares needed to be small - 1” finished. That meant my letters needed to be smaller than that; yikes! The idea of cutting and using a machine button hole appliqué stitch around ninety nine letters approximately 3/4” or less sent me quickly returning to the drawing board. But I always came back to that original plan. In the end, I just got down to work with my Granny’s voice reminding me that if I was going to do a job then it had to be done right! I wanted the background  for the word search to be a patchwork quilt to show similarities and differences all beautifully cohesive together!

For the list of hidden words I placed them all around the word search rectangle. I tried to draw font styles and choose colours to the match the meaning of each word; big bold oranges for strong, the multicoloured scrap for creative and so on. Keeping the importance of the focus fabric was the reason to use it for the directive ‘Be ... ‘ and with the stars symbolizing our everyday heroes. Whereas the tiny word search letters were labour intensive the list of words were so much fun to create. Definitely from a cutting and appliqué perspective bigger is way better and less stressful!

For the quilting I used an all over scribbling design around the word search, letters and stars. In the word search background I quilted straight lines to emphasize the patchwork quilt look. Finally I decided the binding should be made of bits and pieces sewn together to wrap the quilt and to symbolize our unity and diversity.

Effervescent Jungle 

Honorable Mention
by Suzy Webster



Mirkwood ForestMirkwood, a small oak forest at Ricky's home (Autumn Rock)

Mirkwood by Ricky Tims

On my land, next to my house, there is a small forest of oak trees that I named Mirkwood after the forest in The Hobbit by JRR Tolkein. Mirkwood is a magical place and I have made several quilts using those trees as a theme. The wildfire in 2018 went through Mirkwood, burned the undergrowth, singed all of the trees, and was hot enough that several of the trees did not survive...but most are recovering.

The background for this quilt was dye painted on a single piece of fabric with a color wash to create the general color of the sky, foliage, and foreground in Autumn. I also painted little gray sticks to become trunks of the trees and then painted black bars to represent the fence. On top of the dyed piece I used a confetti type applique' to enhance the fall leaves. The fence posts are created with fabric strips placed on top of the dyed bars. The dye bleeds a bit behind the bars and softens the effect. The random, large-stitch, machine quilting stitching secures the confetti appliqué and by using free motion stitching with black thread I was able to create detail in the aspen trunks as well as to create the wire on the fencing.

This is the only quilt I have made that I had framed and put behind glass. It just seemed appropriate for some reason.

Mirkwood Detail by Ricky Tims
Click photo for large view.



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