Posts Tagged ‘Chenille series’

Road Show Quilts

May 18, 2016

It turns out there was one more piecing project before I tackled the quilting stack. This one is the second in a series of road quilts. I didn’t intend to do such a series, but all I need is one more to add to this one and the Turquoise Trail quilt and I’ve got myself a Road Show Quilts series.

Lani Longshore Rte 66 top

I had two pieces of Route 66 fabric in the Southwest collection. Two small pieces. With a really busy pattern. Then Maya Madhavan suggested I make a quilt from my masonry experience, and that gave me an idea for using this busy fabric.

Lani Longshore Rte 66 detail

When I finished the top, another idea popped in my head. I’ve wanted to explore map quilts ever since I read the book Maphead by Ken Jennings. There’s a great chapter about how the Polynesians drew maps showing ocean currents with twigs and islands with rocks. I’m also collecting fabric for a series of space quilts. Why not combine the two? While I’m at it, why not incorporate those quilts into the fourth book Ann Anastasio and I have planned for our Chenille series. Yes, I know, we’re still working on the third book, The Chenille Ultimatum, but we have a title and ideas for the fourth (The Captain and Chenille, quilters exploring space with lovably crazy aliens). It could work, and in my copious free time I’ll get around to it.

In the meantime, here’s the stack of quilt tops begging for attention.

Lani Longshore unquilted tops

Luck and wisdom!

The Year In Review – Take One

December 17, 2014

This is the time of year for reviewing the balance sheet of projects completed versus projects attempted. I expect that I will reframe my achievements and shortcomings more than once before the end of the year, so here is The Year In Review – Take One.

Not quite clear enough for dancing, but I can get to my fabric

Not quite clear enough for dancing, but I can get to my fabric

The sewing room isn’t entirely organized. I’m beginning to think the universe will end if I ever get everything under control, or maybe that’s just the excuse I use to justify the continued chaos. Still and all, the floor in front of my fabric drawers is navigable, and has been for nearly two months. This is a major victory.

Yes, that is the diary of River Song - holding my space Viking notes

Yes, that is the diary of River Song – holding my space Viking notes

The third installment in The Chenille Series – The Chenille Ultimatum – isn’t done, nor is my planned novel about space Vikings. I have, however, been organizing my notes, making better scene outlines, filling in holes in my character profiles – all things that will make for better writing. This may not be a victory, but it is progress.

Not a partridge, not a pear tree, still fun

Not a partridge, not a pear tree, still fun

We have a decorated Christmas tree. There was a question about whether we would have one, since our daughter is the one who does the bulk of the decorating and she won’t be home this year. The joy of the season won out over my natural laziness, and I brought out the decorations. In the process, I also found the box for the Easter decorations. After I finished trimming the tree, I put away the Easter eggs that had been on display for the past two years. This is also a victory, although if I had any sense I wouldn’t admit to it.

Luck and wisdom!


September 3, 2014

Despite my best intentions, and a brand new notepad, the new schedule I wrote up didn’t work this week. Part of that was due to the end of summer festivities – Labor Day Weekend and the Scottish Games – and part was due to the tortuous path creativity often takes. Oddly enough, stomping around the house in a snit did not help the creative process. Then I remembered the little voice from my GPS, who finds another way to my destination when I take a wrong turn even though the route is mapped out right there, on the screen. “Recalculating,” she grouses. I did, too.

Lani Longshore Viking tote

My go-to scheme when the task at hand proves difficult is to do something else. Instead of staring at the pile of fabric that wasn’t making itself into my Challenge project, I made a tote bag. I bought two yards of this Viking journey fabric, intending to make a quilt when my story about space Vikings is finished. Since I’m still working on the third book in the Chenille series (The Chenille Ultimatum), the space Viking story is on long-term hold. Instead, I lined the tote bag with space fabric.

Lani Longshore space fabric

I also put some jingly-jangly stuff on the outside of the bag.

Lani Longshore Viking motif keychain

It’s probably no surprise that I have more lovely embellishments. They didn’t quite fit the requirements for a tote bag.

Lani Longshore Viking embellishments

Since it is easier to make a new small project than put scraps away, I started a base quilt that might be a better home for the embellishments. It will also be a nice escape project for the next time I get writers and/or quilters block.

Luck and wisdom!

Luck and Wisdom

February 26, 2014

There are times when I write myself into a corner. I found myself trapped in a chapter of the next book in the Chenille series – The Chenille Ultimatum – and despaired. When I despair, I talk to myself. When I talk to myself, I ask questions like, “Self, what do you need?”


Turned out what I needed was luck and wisdom. So I had one of the characters comment on how the universe occasionally rewards our perseverance with luck and wisdom. A few hours later, I finished the chapter.


When I rewarded myself with some time in the sewing room, it occurred to me that I was very lucky to have a huge stash of embellishments, a lovely glass bottle, and an open tube of glass bead glue. I’m not always the cleverest person in the room, but I decided I was wise enough to seize the moment.


Shiny things!

Shiny things!


There is still room for more embellishments, and I’m just the gal to glue them.


As an added reward, I found this lovely, gutsy flower shoving through the cracked ground in our back yard after our first rain in months.


Growing in spite of it all

Growing in spite of it all


May we all be blessed with luck, wisdom and perseverance.