Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Happy Valentines, New Book! and New Studio!

My friend Tina gave me this little Valentines cupid which is darling but I thought the back was as cute as the front. Good for a smile which I like to give my friend's. 
HI Friends!
Thank you for not giving up on me and my blog. I have been so very busy! I moved all of my quilting things out of my home where my studio has been for many years into a brand new spot that is commercial and amazing! Lots of windows and lots of beautiful light!
I am working on new things and am doing patterns out of the wool wallhangings I have done and I will have photos of those fairly soon. I will be selling some of my favorite fabrics on my website and some other things will be added as time goes on.
I plan to do some private classes for small groups which will be fun because I can give good attention etc. 
June 4-8th is my retreat dates for this year and as we have done before we will be attending Farm Chicks on Sunday. You would come in on Saturday and Sunday morning we will be attending Farm Chicks and then we will go to Perry Street Pizza. Then the next four days we will be sewing up a storm. Story Quilts, projects from the New book Hoochy Twochy or possibly a chicken quilt since this is the year of the Rooster. Lots of ideas and lots of creativity here and alot of fun!
My studio is part of a large gym complex that has many health business's, insurance, dental etc and luckily they have a large beeautiful classroom with a full kitchen. I will be hiring Miss Tina from LA again to share her cooking expertise! Tiaras and other fun prizes will be included and a field trip to Coeur d'Alene and Dockside restaurant too! We still have a few openings. $750. for the five days.

 Well I did a screen shot of my new book cover and cannot crop it without it getting totally out of focus. Grrr. Anyway, it should be printed in two weeks and the website company is finishing up my store and will have the new book on there. Hooray! This photo gives you the basic idea.

Below is the happy dog from the book. It is all done Hoochy style.And easy with big pieces. There are boats and cars, and dogs and cats and many fun things included plus pages from the Hoochy Mama book and from the Flower Power book. We hope to do a block of the month group after awhile and I will be doing pins for everyone and a six week challenge. Pretty fun! Being happy and Out of the Box is what this is all about! My website is Mary Lou Designs or

 Below is my studio after they painted the entry side of it. No furniture yet!
 Here is my desk as it was added to the studio. Empty shelves!
There were about three times this many boxes and lots of furniture. Sheesh.
Entry front side. This is a small retail space that will be open when the weather is warm and beautiful. I have small quilts hung there now that I will offer patterns in. I have some fabrics (only ones I would use since I can use them if they do not sell and they are hard to find). I have collected bird houses for a long time and the birdhouse above was a gift from my dear friends when my Father died. It means the world to me. Pam Clarke gave me this little corner unit years ago and I love it too.
 Ikea drawer units hold everything you need! I have two of them -one in each room.
 My daughter in law sorted every button I had (huge assortment-REALLY) and all of my trims and threads and needles and well, you know all of my STUFF. It is all tidy and wonderful! It is a pleasure to open the drawers and the huge containers of buttons! Oh and beads and the cupboard with paints, canvas's, pdf fabric, craft things all in order! Would love to do a painting on fabric class maybe this summer sometime.
                                                             Drawer two
                                                                     Drawer three

Aove- My friend Molly gave me this cute quilting lady and she is holding my actual fabrics I desiged. Great fun!
Below is my clock collection and my dearest most favorite clock is from the Bunny Sisters, Charlotte and Laura. They have been dear to me for many years and I adore them. They have me the LOVE clock!

 This is above my cutting table with pins and gadget I use.
 My sewing machine with the trailer over that Connie made me. You can barely see it but it has a little Hawaiian girl that dances as I sew on the top left. :0)
 My card holder and arling birdhouse. Makes me happy.
 Below is just stuff I collected. Red makes me sing...or at least feel like it
Baskets I have collected. So pretty and a gourd lady and another birdhouse. 
 Retail side which is so different now. No boxes and small quilt samples on wall. I will take photos one of these days to show you.
 Below is my pin cushion collection and a photo of my Granddaughters class I helped make a school auction quilt. SO cute. I love each of those kids and they each made their own bird for the tree in the quilt. A sampler of one of my fabric lines on the bottom and button holders.
 Pin cushions I love
 My desk which has far more things above it now. All my fabric to sew with on the right.
Below is the sampler I was telling you about with my fabrics. So fun!

Below is a platter I got as a gift from my friends Wendy Price and Sandy Fisher. I have gotten this in cards so many times. I think since I have worn and given out tiaras for about ten or more years. Every girl needs a tiara. If yu don't have one you need one!!

Thats about all for now. I am ending with a quilt I did about my husband and my chickens. It seemed like a nice thing for me to end with. 
I am going to be better at doing this blog because soon the website company will be posting it and my blog will be connected. Happy day. :0)
Please comment. I would like to know you haven't given up on me and you are coming in for color and fun and getting out of the box! Things seem sad for many people now but if you have faith and enjoy quilting and sharing and making friends you do not have to be angry or sad. These emotions keep you down and are not healthy. Count your blessings like your friends, your family, a warm house, food on the table, something for a hobby and something to look forward to!
See you next time friend. :0)


  1. So happy to see you're back! Congrats on your new studio...well deserved!! In these times it's so nice to see your very happy, uplifting site. I, for one, really need it!!

  2. So glad you've done a post about the retreat. Can I send you a deposit cheque and then I'll send you the balance shortly before the retreat please? I just checked your website and see your store isn't set up yet.

    What theme have you picked for this retreat? Love the Farm Chicks sale and looking forward to seeing you and Tina soon.

  3. That is the cutest little cupid doll! I like things that make me smile too! Your studio looks great! Glad you can be back in it again with all your snow and ice!

  4. Your studio is a warm and wonderful place to create beautiful and fun pieces. I've missed you and your blog! Welcome back!

  5. Thank you, Mary Lou, for the update and the tour of your new, beautifu studio! The yellow is so cheery and all the momentos make it more special!

    I wish you the very best of luck in your new "home" and hope you have every happiness and success - you deserve it so much!!

  6. Welcome back! I love all the pictures and wish I lived closer so I could see them in person. Your space looks so inviting I think I'd be tempted to sleep there.

  7. I am so glad you posted pictures of your new space. It is as charming as you are. I am glad you are doing well. I took your classes in Hunstville, AL, and have had your books for years. Please keep it up. Your cheery site always makes me happy. Maybe someday I went get to travel out and see your shop.

  8. The quote that is going strong these days ends with the words, "Nevertheless, she persisted." Those words could be said of you...and, I hope of me. So good to read what you are up to and to be inspired by your optimism. And bless your daughter-in-law for all her help. It feels good to get a fresh start, doesn't it? We're all still here! Wish I could be there!

  9. Mary Lou, I'm so glad to see a new entry on your blog. Love, love, love the photos of your new quilting studio. You have so many lovely things! Thanks for writing for us again.

  10. So happy to see you blogging again and even happier that you have your mojo back!!! I hope you enjoy your new studio space; I look forward to seeing all that you create.

  11. So happy to receive an update from you. Happy for you with the new studio and store. Met you years ago in Seneca, SC at the Lake & Mountain Quilt Guild meeting & workshop. I have all of your books! I love your positive outlook on the world, this in spite of the "stuff" going on. You are a blessing! ;)

  12. So happy to hear from you! Blessings!

  13. Good to see you and the marvelous progress you, friends, and family have made turning this amazing commercial space into YOU SPACE!! Your colorful joy is everywhere. :)

    Might you offer a "Cape Class" to go along with the tiaras? This world certainly needs saving lately and as many of us that are properly equipped with cape + tiara, the better! I have a tiara that my sweet hubby got for me along with one for his mom. AMIL is in heaven now, so her tiara is on the top of a lamp in my wee sewing room.


  14. Mary Lou, I saw the picture of your bottle tree on pinterest a couple (or more) years ago, and saved it, not knowing it was yours! It has been the inspiration for my bottle tree all these years! Blue and yellow look beautiful together! You know we live in the country and a "neighbor" (about 4 miles down the road) was digging his up because he wanted to build a new one. Husband just happened to be driving by and yelled out the window, "Hey, whatcha' gonna do with that?" Well, it now is "planted" in my side yard! I've had a hard time collecting blue bottles, as I'm not much of a wine drinker. This summer it will get some sort of yellow climbing flower! The moral of this story is, I guess I've always loved your style, even when I didn't know it was you! (Love your new website and I will be sending a check for your new book, so I can get it autographed! :) ) Love and big hugs, Diane Allen Parks in Waverly, close to Memphis! LOL