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The Little Pink Penguin Project

June 1, 2013

A few months ago I received a message from Krista asking if I wanted to contribute to a group quilt for the very special and newly pregnant Ayumi Mills.

A millisecond later I’d responded with a “Yes, of COURSE I’ll help make a baby quilt!!” Pretty quickly a lovely alphabet quilt was in the works, featuring patterns from the hard to find book Patchwork 318, by Kumiko Fujita.  Since we were able to choose which letter and design we’d like to make, I decided to make the P for polka dots, and a pretty pink penguin.

The penguin pattern is my own, and was recently published in the Pretty In Patchwork – Holidays book. I thought adding eyelashes made her so pretty! Just my luck that Ayumi learned that she’s having a girl! I’d been hoarding a fat quarter of Lori Holt’s Sew cherry line for ages, and decided the penguin’s tummy needed to feature it.

Click over to Ayumi’s fabulous post to see the whole quilt!

You should also head over to Amazon and pick up a copy of her new amazing book:

Have a wonderful weekend!


To Boston with Love

May 31, 2013

To Boston with Love display of flags at the Museum of Fine Arts. Photo credit: MFA Boston

The past several weeks have been full of eager anticipation for me, as I watched the brainchild of Berene Campbell take shape and unfold into one heck of an art installation.  In the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing, she initiated the To Boston with Love movement. She, along with the help of Amy Friend  and the Vancouver Modern Quilt Guild, asked quilters and sewists worldwide to send handmade flags of love, peace and hope to Boston where she initially hoped for maybe a thousand flags to perhaps hang somewhere around Boston for a day.

The response was inspiring. The idea caught like wildfire throughout all the online communities. Instagram – #tobostonwithlove, Flickr, Twitter and a slew of personal and Modern Quilt Guild blogs lit up with the message to make and send healing flags for Boston.

Even though my creative mojo had been derailed for many months, I just had to join in and make at least one flag.

Suddenly, I had the desperate need to bring out my Ruby for the occasion.

Ruby – Vintage singer circa 1923

Even though my Janome would have been much better suited for the curved applique work I wanted to do, she was hopelessly buried in clutter. My Ruby’s simple yet perfect straight stitch would have to do, and I plonked her on my dining room table.  I  couldn’t find any fusible web around my studio to save my life. Oh well…


Since I was well ahead of the deadline, I thought I’d prep all 16 letters of the phrase “To Boston With Love” just in case.

It’s funny how much you’re capable of doing when you’re motivated…

I wrote inspiring quotes of love and healing on the backside of each flag.

Nearly done…

Here they are strung up together..

It was then, when I learned that the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston had agreed to install and display the flags! They even offered to fly Berene out from Vancouver (with 200 flags in hand from the VMQG and FVMQG) to oversee the installation.

The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Photo credit: MFA Boston

Amy Friend and Berene Campbell prepping the flags. Photo Credit: MFA Boston

She and Amy then hung over 1700 flags in the Shapiro courtyard in time for the Memorial Day Celebration the MFA had planned.

Photo Credit: MFA Boston

I can’t express how honoured I feel to have some of my handiwork included in the display!

My flags! Photo credit: MFA Boston

The weekend was a huge success with nearly 30,000 people taking in the exhibits at the MFA.

Below is a link to a video the MFA posted on Facebook about the Memorial Day celebration, which shows quite a lot of the flag display.

The flags will be up until July 7, 2013 and will be hung as a recurring yearly exhibit.

The Vancouver Modern Quilt Guild Facebook page has been amazing at posting all of the news coverage about Berene’s vision, the exhibit and makers of the flags. I particularly enjoyed the interview Berene gave on the CBC radio program.

Thanks so much for popping by and reading everyone! I have lots of news to catch up with on here, so here’s hoping for another good chunk of free time to post about it all!

Have a fabulous weekend!

Threadbias Sew-a-long

March 4, 2013

Happy Monday my friends!

So as usual I’m a tad behind in posting fun news and web happenings.

There is a great little sew-a-long over on Threadbias this year, where they are sewing their way through the Pretty in Patchwork Holidays book by John Q Adams.

They kicked off the year sewing my Greetings From Antarctica Pillow patterns, and boy are the pillow and projects so much fun to look through!

Click here to see their Feature Friday post which shows off all the happy penguins and polar bears made so far.

Pretty in Patchwork Holidays, Polar Bear pillow, sewn by Amanda – owner of Threadbias

Last month they made the Holiday Surprise reverse applique pillow, designed by Angela Mitchell, and it looks like March will be all about the Harvest Vine Table Runner, by Jessica Kovach.

It looks like a really fun place to hang out and get inspired!

Happy sewing everyone!

My 2013 so far

February 23, 2013

So back in early December, shortly before the madness of Christmas was about to begin for my family, I sat down and really thought about my goals for 2013. I thought back to how 2012 began, and just how amazing,

The VMQG Workshop I taught in November 2012 – Pretty In Patchwork Holidays – Greeting From Antarctica Pillows

The FVMQG workshop I taught in October 2012 – Fox and Gnome Totebag

insanely busy,

Fox and Gnome tote bag pattern released in November 2012

Arctic Seal block pattern published in Quiltmaker’s 100 blocks Vol 6

Did Someone Say Treat Wall hanging, published in Quiltmaker Sept/Oct 2012

You Got Cookies wall hanging, published in Quiltmaker Nov/Dec 2012

Lil’ Matryoshki table runner, published in Quiltmaker’s Quilts from 100 Blocks Fall 2012

I Love Sushi Quilt pattern released in July, 2012

Lil Matryoshka quilt block, published in Quiltmaker’s 100 blocks Vol 5

Vintage Mason Jar Lanterns free pattern released  in April 2012

The Singer Featherweight free pattern released in April 2012

I Love My All Stars quilt pattern, published in Quiltmaker May/June 2012

Lil’ Monkeys take the Bus quilt pattern, published in Quilts from Quiltmaker’s 100 blocks Spring 2012

A new Paper Piecing Photo Tutorial released in February 2012

and exciting it was!

Greetings From Antarctica Pillow pattern, published in Pretty in patchwork Holidays by John Q. Adams

Once December was done, our house guests returned home, and some semblance of normalcy came over my home, it became quite clear to me that I needed this year to be my year of rest, relaxation, family fun, love, clarity, direction and fulfillment. And maybe even in that order?

My life in Iphone shots – Jan, 2013

My January was full of Scrappy trip along happiness. Oh did I need to do that project. Finally some pressure-free sewing, just for me!

It was such a good decision, as February so far has been full to to brim with family priorities. And that’s just fine with me to be honest. I’m so thankful I can work from home and be readily available for those who need me.  I’m also so so thankful that my hubby has a great job he’s happy in, which can support all of us. *phew* 

Looking back, I feel like family came second all last year, and I find myself needing to readjust my focus a tad this year.

My life in Iphone shots – Feb, 2013

Don’t worry, there will still be lots of crafty, sewing and quilting goodness coming your way. I might even try for an I Love Sushi Quilt-a-long if there’s enough interest. Or maybe a new mystery quilt-a-long? I’ve had some fun ideas brewing for awhile now, and quite a collection of unpublished patterns stacking up!

A little English paper piecing, all hand pieced and quilted.

I’ve even contemplated joining the xplus-a-long

Happy Sewing my friends!

QuiltCon on Instagram and Flickr

February 20, 2013

quilt con

I’m just going to go ahead and assume that if you’re reading my blog today, then chances are you’re not at QuiltCon, and are at home lamenting that fact as I am.

What’s QuiltCon? Oh, it’s only the inaugural Modern Quilt Show and Conference, and biggest event ever for The Modern Quilt Guild movement yet! It’s happening in Austin Texas right now, and will incorporate a juried quilt show (with cash prizes), vendors, lectures and workshops  from top modern quilters, including Denyse Schmidt, Anna Maria Horner, Elizabeth Hartman, Malka Dubrowsky, Weeks Ringle and Bill Kerr! I don’t know about you, but I’m DYING to be a fly on the wall.

So here is a list of some people you should be following onInstagram and Flickr to see all the behind the scenes goodness of what’s going on in Austin:

@bettycrockerass – (Flickr) Jen Carlton-Bailly, who blogs at Betty Crocker Ass. She’s an avid quilter/sewist who I’m fairly certain has a quilt or two in the show. She posted a shot of her official name tag which read: Social Media Manager for the Modern Quilt Guild. So far she’s posted all kinds of neat stuff from the setup of the trade and quilt show.
oh fransson

@elizabethagh – (Flickr) Elizabeth Hartman, an amazing quilter and author who blogs at Oh, Fransson! Her feed has featured the making of all the gorgeous patchwork award and participation ribbons and some early quilt display set up. She’s teaching two workshops: The Marmalade Quilt, and Free Motion Quilting on a Home Machine.

@kristafleck – (Flickr) Krista Fleckenstein, who blogs at Spotted Stones. She’s a very talented quilter and is attending with her baby girl in tow. I’m pretty sure she has a quilt or two on display at the show.

@lolablueocean – (Flickr) Krista Withers, who blogs at Krista Withers Quilting. She’s an amazing long arm quilter, I know several quilts at the show feature her work, and I love seeing the world through her eyes.

@annamariahorner – (Flickr) Anna Maria Horner, fabulous fabric and pattern designer we all know and love, who blogs at Anna Maria Horner. She’s also teaching two workshops at QuiltCon: Composing a Quilt, and Every Last Stitch.

@happy_zombie – (Flickr) Monica Solorio-Snow, another fun fabric designer who blogs at The Happy Zombie. I met her in Seattle last summer and omg I LOVE her! She’s heaps of fun and so is her ig feed.

@sewtakeahike – (Flickr) Penny Layman who blogs atSew Take a Hike. She’s a good friend and talented paper piecing designer who is teaching two workshops: Beginning Freezer Paper Piecing by Template, and Advanced Foundation Piecing – Designing Blocks. She hasn’t posted anything yet of her trip, but I’m sure that’s because she’s crazy busy getting prepped. I’m hoping she’ll post some paper piecing goodness though!

Edited : @fatquartershop is posting some fun stuff, as is @calamitykim!

Also the #quiltcon hashtag will hopefully make it onto everyone’s photos!
Just in case you’d like to also follow me on instagram, my handle is @artisania .
Have fun following along all the QuiltCon goodness! I know I will..

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February 20, 2013

I really mean it.

The aftermath of Sunday’s distressing discovery, and Monday’s subsequent victory, found me elated, relieved, disgusted, and dismayed. It honestly gave me pause as to whether I should continue to offer free patterns on my site. This isn’t the first time someone has stolen a pattern from me and well, may not be the last.

And then I wondered if maybe it was my over tiredness talking, as the past four weeks have been quite busy and sleepless for me. I decided to then read through your wonderfully supportive comments, and looked at all of the many emails I received from friends, designers, customers, and people I didn’t even know alerting me to the issue, and genuinely upset on my behalf. I saw a lot of tweets, facebook comments, flickr and instagram comments of support and notes of action taken to help, and it … no, YOU reminded me of why I put free patterns up in the first place.

This crafting, sewing and quilting community of ours is such a rich and wonderful place filled to the brim with honest, passionate friends who are all looking out for each other, and genuinely interested in helping each other grow and learn. I very clearly remember being so happy to find free photo tutorials, and free patterns when I needed them the most. So much of my passion for sewing and drive to keep trying and learning truly stemmed from the generosity of a handful of knowledgeable people.

Origami flowers I learned from a free tutorial

I thank them, and I thank you for keeping me inspired, and for your notes of thanks and happiness over finding my videos and patterns. It honestly makes my day when someone emails me a photo, or adds one to the Artisania Flickr group of something they’ve made using one of my patterns. Every time. Your smiles really warm my heart and that makes it all worth it!

Happy VMQG Greetings from Antarctica Pillows Workshop attendees

If you’re hankering for more happy thanks, head over to Jen’s video post at SewHooked. Yes, we were doing whatever we could to fix the problem, but believe me she was too! This is one woman you want in your corner and I’m honoured to call her my friend.

And I’m so very honoured to call you my friend too.

Happy Sewing!

Pattern Theft!!

February 17, 2013

Edited — The offending website has finally been shut down! Thanks to everyone for your amazing support and due diligence in getting the word out there and contacting your designer friends! What an amazing crafty community we have and I’m so very thankful for each and every one of you!!!


So it came to my attention this morning, via Jen who blogs at SewHooked, that Los Angeles Needleworks is swiping the free patterns from many sewing, quilting, crochet, embroidery and knitting designers and selling them on their website. Including several of my patterns.

Recognize my gnomes and hedgehog?

Please do not buy from this website!! Support your hardworking indie pattern designers, and buy patterns directly from the designers.

I just can’t believe the sheer number of patterns this person is claiming to have designed herself! Here is her google+ profile , Her facebook,  andtwitter.Although judging by the terribly translated descriptions, she may not be an actual person, but maybe a front for an overseas jerk?

I’ve heard that her Etsy store and shop facebook page have been taken down, but as of 7:30pm PST the website is still up and adding new patterns.

My husband, rife with anger wrote the following letter to the domain and site hosting providers:


Re: Copyright Violation –


It’s come to our attention that one of your customers is currently running a website under the URL of  Through this site they are selling patterns for download that are being pulled from various other websites without the owners permission.


Primary example I’ll refer to is the pattern designed by my wife Sonja Callaghan of

Here is the link to her original pattern “Gnomeling and Fancy Mushroom” that was posted up under copyright in 2008:

And here is the link for a “Gnome With Mushroom House Paper Piecing Pattern Quilt Block” currently up on the Los Angeles Needlework site:
Gnome With Mushroom House

The primary issue at hand is that not only are they in effect STEALING the pattern outright (image & all) and then SELLING it on their site, when this has been available for FREE on the Artisania site for 5 YEARS.

Artisania is receiving no credit, payment or any type of compensation for this offering, and has never been contacted by, or granted permission to, the Los Angeles Needlework website to use the pattern. Here are two more listings of Sonja’s which are being sold by Los Angeles Needlework:

Gnomlette and Lil’ Hedgehog Patterns

The listing at the Los Angeles Needlework site:

The listing at the Los Angeles Needlework site:
Hedgehog Paper Piecing Quilt Block Pattern

This letter is official notification under Section 512(c) of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), and I seek the removal of the aforementioned infringing material from your servers. I request that you immediately notify the infringer of this notice and inform them of their duty to remove the infringing material immediately, and notify them to cease any further posting of infringing material to your server in the future.

Please also be advised that law requires you, as a service provider, to remove or disable access to the infringing materials upon receiving this notice. Under US law a service provider, such as yourself, enjoys immunity from a copyright lawsuit provided that you act with deliberate speed to investigate and rectify ongoing copyright infringement. If service providers do not investigate and remove or disable the infringing material this immunity is lost. Therefore, in order for you to remain immune from a copyright infringement action you will need to investigate and ultimately remove or otherwise disable the infringing material from your servers with all due speed should the direct infringer, your client, not comply immediately.

I am providing this notice in good faith and with the reasonable belief that rights my company owns are being infringed. Under penalty of perjury I certify that the information contained in the notification is both true and accurate, and I have the authority to act on behalf of the owner of the copyright(s) involved.

Should you wish to discuss this with me please contact me directly.


Vince Callaghan

Please, if you recognize any of the patterns, please notify the designers so they can also take action against this blatant fraud.

If you’re a designer affected by this copyright infringement, start writing to paypal, the domain host website, and anyone else you can think of who can help stop this site.

Here is another designer who’s trying to do something about it.

Thanks for your help and support!


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