Detail from "Rain Dance," an original quilt by Sherrie Spangler

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Covid house dresses

Since I moved to Arizona in April, my at-home wardrobe has consisted of a series of sleeveless, loose, breezy, comfortable dresses that I refer to as my house dresses, like this rayon patchwork one that I bought from a street vendor in Boulder about 15 years ago.

And this swingy tie dye number that I only wore once in Gig Harbor on an unusually hot day, but here it's in regular rotation.

Little did I know that this is a trend! I googled house dress to check on the origins of the term (it goes back to our grandmothers' days) and discovered that with summer heat and everyone staying home because of Covid, women are ditching their sweats in favor of loose, comfy dresses. So for once, I'm in style!

The purple tie dye is from Chico's. I bought it years ago and never found the right time for it -- until now. 

Same with this painted orange gauze dress from a vendor at a farmers market in Hawaii about 10 years ago. Once I got back to the Northwest it went to the back of my closet, but now I love throwing it on.

This embroidered ankle-length dress from India is one of my favorites, and I'm glad to finally be wearing it every week.

Here is why pants are becoming increasingly uncomfortable:

And who wants anything hot or constricting when this is the weather forecast:

Temps have been hellish this summer, and we're setting new heat records left and right. May through July was the hottest three-month period on record in Tucson, and July was the hottest month EVER recorded here going back to the 1800s. Definitely some climate change going on. 

Have a colorful day

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

More fun with masks

My sister Kathleen and husband, Peter, had fun when I asked them to send photos of themselves with masks. They posed with their collection of African masks and coordinated the colors of their masks with the art. But they couldn't get Zoomie the dog to cooperate.

My other sister, in Louisville, snapped this gargoyle in a mask on one of her walks.

And "Tie Dye Judy," who sells a lot of tie dye, made sure to get her colorful sandals in her photo.

All of this must be so confusing for our best friends:

 Have a colorful day

Saturday, August 8, 2020

Friends with masks


It's been a week since I put out a call for pictures of readers in masks, and I got a baker's dozen responses. (Appropriate, since it seems everyone is baking during these coronavirus days.)

First up, I want to recognize two nurses on the front lines. The first one is my sister Kathleen, who works at the hospital in Port Townsend, WA. Second one is my friend Susan, a neonatal intensive care unit nurse in Rockford, IL. Let's hear it for all of our nurses who have to wear those masks and shields 8-10 hours a day!

Donna in Gig Harbor, WA, is in front of her Gig Harbor quilt on the design wall:

Gerrie in Portland used leftover backing from her latest quilt for her mask:

Carol from Gig Harbor relaxes with her "Covid Summer" quilt:

Ann from Gig Harbor is in front of a Comfort Quilt (for cancer patients) that she made from mask scraps:

Susan, from Port Townsend wears a mask that goes with the art behind her:

Saturday, August 1, 2020

Show us your masks!

Hey girls, let's have some fun and show off the masks we've been making!

Send me pictures of you with your masks, but have fun with the photos. Maybe coordinate them with your clothes, quilts, or something else that you've made. Or just wear them while you're holding up your current project, or doing your favorite coronavirus activity (lying on the couch?). When I get enough, I'll feature them in a blog post!

You can email them to me at:

Include a sentence with your name and anything you want to say about the photo.

This is last night's moon rising into the sunset colors above my house. Every night there's an incredible sky show here.

Have a colorful day

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Words of wisdom

By Lori Roberts of Little Truths Studio.

I'm still collecting quotes, so today I thought I'd show some of my latest favorites along with sunset photos from near my house.

(The first picture is by Lori Roberts of Little Truths Studio in Oregon. Check out her blog/shop for some more beautiful art and words.)

I think the top quote is apropos to all of us who have turned to stitching to get us through the coronavirus. Same goes for this next quote. I find the simple act of running a needle in and out of fabric to create an embroidered picture is so calming.

I'm also calmed every evening at sunset when I head outside for the show. I took the shot below about a block from my house, looking east at sunset to catch the beautiful reflected light on Pusch Ridge.

That same evening I captured one rogue orange cloud amidst the grey. A beacon.

Today I'm taking "Let Yourself Rest" to heart. I slept in and enjoyed two leisurely cups of coffee instead of the usual one. I skipped the news reports in my inbox. I'm not leaving the house except for sunset (it's too hot to walk) and I'm going to just read and sew. I have some things I could worry about, but I'm choosing not to.

I feel so lucky to have this view just a few minutes' walk from my house. Beautiful Pusch Ridge in Oro Valley, AZ.

And then there's this, LOL:

 Have a colorful day

Friday, July 24, 2020

Masks for Trader Joe's and more color

Julia models a Marcia Derse fabric mask.

That's my daughter above with one of the masks I made for the Trader Joe's employees she works with in Spokane. I'm just doing my part to spread color wherever I can. Here are some of the others:

Erica chose the veggie/fruit mask.

Brett went for the beer fabric.

Evie rocks blue and white polka dots.

Grant goes for big dots.

I'm also spreading color on the roads. I got my car back from the garage yesterday and put on my new license plate! (It was a short in the oil control valve that set off the warning lights.)

And here are some sunset shots from my front courtyard last night. The sunsets are amazing, night after night.

Came across this on Facebook -- an article or maybe an ad about Tucson in a 1949 National Geographic. I can't believe I'm finally living the dream -- fires, monsoon floods, heat, mosquitoes, plague and all.

But just to show that Arizona doesn't hold exclusive rights to color, here's a picture from my sister of an artichoke in her garden in western Washington. She let it go to seed and it produced those gorgeous purple things.

Have a colorful day