A Messy Business

This neat little stack of fabric…

Has become this…

My studio is a disaster.  There are fabric scraps all over, pieces on the floor, freezer paper rolls, pins and markers everywhere.  Believe it or not this is what I call designing.  It’s a state of controlled chaos.  I do it all at once; picking fabric, drawing the designs, writing the pattern, prepping the appliqué, choosing embellishments, and on and on.  Really, sometimes I think I’m nuts.

The good news is this…

By the time this little mess gets into your hands it will look a whole lot better and I’ll have a clean studio.

Today I’m going to watch Julia and Julia on DVD and work my way through this quilt.  Block by block, piece by piece.  I’m 2/3rds done!

Have a great Sunday everyone.  Don’t tell me the ending of the movie, but have you seen it and did you like it?



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  • Louise - Can hardly see what you will create with your sweet little “mess”. I saw Julia. It was okay. Not my favorite Meryle movie..She is such a versatile actress. Good one to watch while you stitch. For me today it is the Olympics with my needlework stitchery. Enjoy the day!!ReplyCancel

  • Sue - I love your mess as well as the movie! And I’m not a cook or a designer. Thanks for doing all that you do.ReplyCancel

  • Vicky - Looks like another fabulous applique project in the works! Sign me up! Will be watching for the Julia reviews also.ReplyCancel

  • Jewel - Julie and Julia is one of my all time favorite movies. You will fall in love with Stanly Tucci. Anyway, I love the fabrics can’t wait to see what you design :)ReplyCancel

  • Diane - I consider Julie and Julia one of my all time favorite movies — you’re going to love it! Can’t wait to see what you’re creating — I know it will be good. My daughter and granddaughter are visiting this weekend, so I will be happily enjoying the world of a two year old!ReplyCancel

  • Loris Mills - Loved Julie and Julia. It’s a great story and as usual, Meryl Streep is amazing. I really enjoyed it.
    As for the studio mess…your work looks inspiring even in the midst of chaos! Can’t wait to see what comes next :-)ReplyCancel

  • Sunny - Can’t wait to see your quilt! I haven’t seen the J&J movie, but the book was very forgettable. I’ve heard the movie is much better. Will be waiting for your review…….ReplyCancel

  • jaybird - but the mess is half the fun… and the movie… i haven’t seen it… even though everyone tells me i need to!ReplyCancel

  • wendy - You’ll love watching Julia, I think it’s a great movie.
    I can’t wait to see what you are designing.ReplyCancel

  • Jean - You will love the movie. My husband and I both enjoyed it. Drat, I couldn’t enlarge the pictures big enough to see what the pattern was. Tee Hee! I’m sure it’s going to be wonderful.ReplyCancel

  • Rachel - Love that fabric. I can’t make anything without making a mess first. At least I clean up after myself haha.

    Julia and Julia is a great movie. You will really enjoy it!ReplyCancel

  • Carrie Proulx - I think you will love it Anne, I sure did!! Even Joe liked it.
    How exciting, I’m sure I will love your new quilt too, I love them all! Happy designing today! The state of things is just temporary, right! It’s a lovely mess I must say!ReplyCancel

  • Jessie - I loved Julie and Julia! It was a great movie that even my hubby liked! And I can’t wait to see what you are designing there, love those fabrics!ReplyCancel

  • ranette - Oh goodie a new design from you to look forward to!! I liked the Julia part of the movie, but not the Julie part so much.ReplyCancel

  • Mary - I thought I was the last person on earth to see that movie having only watched it two weeks ago. Loved it as did my daughter. I love that you describe your design process. I’m always facinated with the “process”.ReplyCancel

  • Cyndarella - Seen it! Loved it! You will too. I take comfort in your mess. I, too, have trouble keeping things neat and tidy. Have a wonderful Sunday!ReplyCancel

  • Vickie - I totally believed that Meryl Streep was Julia Child. Oh, and to me, there really is no ending to give away.ReplyCancel

  • jodi - LOVED the movie! And I know you will like it too. I could watch it again and I RARELY watch movies more then once. I really like the new blog re-do!(better then the first re-do) It’s more you. ;o) It’s sunny here today! Can you believe it? So happy. ;o)ReplyCancel

  • annie - I love when your studio is a mess….means GOOD things for US ( selfish me)!!! I liked the movie…didn’t love it. The best parts were with MStreep…she is truly amazing!!!! XXXReplyCancel

  • Jill Majers - I loved your mess. However I must tell you I think I make a bigger mess than you. Can’t wait to see the design you come up with. I love your stuff. I think whimsy is the hardest thing to do really well and you are wonderful at it! I loved Julie and Julia and hope you do too!ReplyCancel

  • Marie - I love anything with Meryl Streep (even a bad movie plot). I thought I was the only one that creativity completely obliterates orderliness.ReplyCancel

  • AnnieO - Creativity can’t always be neat and tidy!

    I loved Julie and Julia, saw it with my mom and we had a great time. Be sure to see “It’s Complicated” with Meryl too :)ReplyCancel

  • Dandelion Quilts - I have watched it probably 10 times…I love it. Bon Appetite!ReplyCancel

  • mimi'sdarlins - If it’s any consolation, I think we’re all a little nuts :-) I loved Julie and Julia, fifteen minutes into the movie, Meryl really ‘was’ Julia! Let us know how you liked the film.ReplyCancel

  • Karen Shackleford - It’s the best movie I’ve seen in decades! By the end of the movie, it’s hard to separate Meryl from the real Julia! Enjoy!ReplyCancel

  • Renita - I really loved this movie-Julia was so believable and it inspired me to go look at her cook book again and try something new! It is one I would watch over and over again. Hope you enjoyed it. I can’t wait to see what you are creating and I enjoyed seeing your mess. This is the way I do it too-all at once! Right now I am starting to work on Pat Sloan’s Paris challenge. Thought it might be fun…maybe you should do something like this at some point..your fabric choices would inspire many of us to make beautiful things! Take care and happy monday, RenitaReplyCancel

  • Annette - Nothing like ordered chaos. Have fun designing.ReplyCancel

  • Sivje Parish - Yes, I have seen Julie and Julia, and Yes, I loved it!
    And….your messy studio? It still looks lovely. My messy sewing area is NASTY BAD and there is no way I am showing pictures. I can’t wait to see what you are making!ReplyCancel

  • Kristy in Ohio - The movie was great….and just like wanting to know how a movie ends…I am so curious what your “mess” will turn into. The colors are SCRUMPTIOUS. Kristy in OhioReplyCancel

  • Margo - I know you will enjoy the movie Anne, as we just watched Julie & Julia last night. It was such a fantastically motivating movie for anyone who has a passion for a particular hobby!

    Although my passion is NOT cooking, I thoroughly enjoyed the movie for its portrayal of the whirlwind of emotions that are tied to the passion(s) that we call our own.

    My passion is quilting/sewing, and I thrive on it so much that I usually need a daily “fix” no matter how small it is.

    I hope that you enjoy the movie as much as my girls and I did.

  • Mary Anne Drury - Saw the movie and LOVED it!!! ….and can’t wait to see what fun stuff you come up with!ReplyCancel

  • Diane - Yes I saw Julia and Julia, yes, I loved it! If this movie will be one of your inspirations for your new quilt, I can’t WAIT to see it—and MAKE it!


  • Ann P. - Can’t wait to see what you are designing. Love all your patterns. And that fabric is so beautiful. I liked Julie and Julia – hope you enjoy it.ReplyCancel

  • Kim D. - My sewing room looks worse than that when I’m sewing. LOL Enjoy the movie, I haven’t seen it yet.ReplyCancel

  • Diana - I just watched Julia and Julia last week. Great performances by Meryl Streep and the other actress. Too bad we all got to watch our diet and can’t eat rich food like that everyday!!ReplyCancel

  • Juliet in SoCal - Loved the movie and was totally inspired by it! I have so enjoyed reading about your pets, esp. your pup who is fighting the battle of the bulge! lol Aren’t we all???ReplyCancel

  • Barb - Loved the movie…..even gave the DVD to my sister in her Christmas stocking. Can’t wait to see what comes of the design session. Hope you enjoy the movie.ReplyCancel

  • Lorid - My quilt room went through that storm a few days ago. It’s crazy and I don’t function well when it’s like that.
    I hope you liked the movie. I loved it!!!ReplyCancel

  • Dena - Loved the Movie… and love controlled chaos – thats how I work as well…. Although I can’t wait to get it cleaned back up again and start the process all over :o)ReplyCancel

  • Karen in Breezy Point - I haven’t watched it yet , but when I purchased it last week at Best Buy, a clerk told me it was a Streep classic and the check out person said it was absolutely hilarious! BTW, they were both GUYS.ReplyCancel

  • Kim - Oh no this is not a disaster I can still see floor! this is controlled chaos :0)…….you’ve got to make a mess to be creative.
    Love your color palate can’t wait to see what comes out of your creativity next.
    I finished my “Tisket a Tasket” top this weekend, and while I am happy to have the top done I’m sorry to leave the project. Thank you for giving us all those fantastic blocks each month, I never enjoyed a project more. Now onto Snowbound!

    Happy sewingReplyCancel

  • Jean C. - Good for you… looks like “progress” to me!
    Yes, I’ve seen Julie/Julia… very good. Hope that you enjoy it.
    I will write more about J/J… when your done watching.
    I just watched another movie that I would highly recommend;
    “Love Happens”…
    Take care…ReplyCancel

  • Kate - I absolutely love this movie. Saw it at the theater, then on demand at home. I then bought the DVD and have watched it several times and even watched the special features on how they made the movie and listened to Nora Ephron talk about the movie as I watched it yet again. You will not be disappointed.ReplyCancel

  • tinyinc - I love your web site and have just popped onto your blog and love that too. Jewels of photos.



  • Sherri - Love these fabrics…can’t wait to see the quilt! Glad to know your sewing table is a little messy once in a while too…makes me feel better! Also received the wool I ordered from you yesterday–the colors are absolutely beautiful!ReplyCancel

  • Diane Nagle - Well ok, I feel better already, because the controlled chaos in my room is really getting out of control! lol! Yes, loved the movie, Meryl Streep is great as always. I thought it was fun and light hearted!ReplyCancel

  • Sinta Renee - The best things come out of your studio!!! That “mess” looks pretty exciting to me… can’t wait to see what you come up with. I hope you enjoyed the movie… I loved it, it gave me warm fuzzies, can’t wait to see it again!ReplyCancel

  • Margaret - Yes, I have heard the movie is great.. and love the fabrics and will be interesting to see what comes of them.. Your dog is adorable!!

  • Sharon S - Loved Julie & Julia. Meryl’s performance was at the top! Can’t wait to see what you make with the delicious fabrics!ReplyCancel

  • kate L - love the movie~~love stanly & Meryl ,always love Meryl. You will enjoy the movie as you do your design & applique.. love your messReplyCancel

  • Vivian - What a beautiful mess! The fabrics are gorgeous. Love the box you have your fat quarters in.

    Julie and Julia made me want to learn to cook. That’s saying a lot. Not that I have been practicing much since.ReplyCancel

  • Wendy Ouellette - Lovely mess! Loved the movie! I now own it. When you design a pattern do you think of the way it will be quilted in the end. I am finishing a stitchery bed sized quilt. Only now am I thinking of how to have it quilted and I have not got a clue! Any suggestions?ReplyCancel

  • Christie - Oh Anne – I hope you loved the movie – what a marvelous love story! Haven’t we all, at one time, dreamed of living in Paris with the man of our dreams? Those two were so in love! And big props to Julie for pursuing her dream!

  • Peg Gilham - Julie and Julia was wonderful. I bought it and my daughters (grown) would not go to the movie with me so I watched it myself and then my 90 year old ex mother in law wanted to watch it with her girls from Florida. Loved it and laughed and laughed.
    Have you seen UP? It is wonderful. It is a must see!ReplyCancel

  • Wendy Altman - Love Julia & Julia – Meryl Streep is such a delight, and so very versatile . . . if you compare her in “The Devil Wears Prada” to “Julia & Julia” – you have to wonder why more lighthearted movies such as this aren’t nominated for Oscars? Even though I didn’t get the “cooking gene” (only the sewing, organizing, cleaning, animal-loving genes), it made me want to cook something!

    But I promise you’ll be watching the movie more than sewing!ReplyCancel

  • Diane - Have seen it…loved it! I am not a big MS fan but she nailed JC.ReplyCancel

  • Peg - Did you know that comments made on your website are put on google search? I put my name in regular google search and it
    lists all of the sites that I have made comments on. I have dropped my full name as a result of this.ReplyCancel

  • Lori - I hope this mess will turn into the next block of the month? Can’t wait to see what comes of it.

    Haven’t seen Julia and Julia.ReplyCancel

  • Teresa - Wow – that is exactly what my sewing room looks like when I get into design mode! I’m glad to see I’m not the only one! And I have seen Julia and Julia and LOVED it!!!! Can’t wait to see what comes out of your design stage next! Thanks!ReplyCancel