We Need to Talk…


I have no problem encouraging my students to step out of their comfort zone and push themselves to experience something new but sometimes I don’t always like to practice what I preach.  Yes, I am admitting yet another “Lisa flaw”.  Anyone that read a recent post will recall that I did sew a bag, which is not my thing, and I had a great time.  But I am ultimately a creature of habit and feel very uncomfortable taking steps into “newness” and that includes welcoming new things into my studio easily. And here’s what I mean:

My beloved BERNINA longarm has a friend now.  Heavens no, not another machine, although that thought is very tempting.  LOL  I have the QMatic which is the computer component for the BERNINA.  Now, I’m not a total dinosaur, in the past I did “computerized” quilting but this was back in the day (many moons ago) when I was quilting daily for customers and could not fathom completing projects without computerizing.  Since I currently quilt for myself, I now find it hard to jump in and bring myself up to speed with technology.  Yes, I need to come face reality, and with this incredible addition I’ll be in feeling like a more modern quilting girl in no time.  BUT it will take some practice!


Learning the software is obviously my first goal, however, I also need to become familiar with the new weight of the machine while doing freehand.  Ah, major learning curve! This is extremely important because although the machine doesn’t necessarily feel much different, the swing is a little different.  Therefore, in order to apply those nice backtracking feathers, it requires me to practice, practice and practice some more.  To aid in my training I’ve placed practice fabric (fabric I care less about) to make sure I’m comfortable with the new weight of the machine.  After gaining confidence in the adjusted swing of my machine I plan on tackling a small piece that will hopefully be an auction piece at Houston. Fingers crossed.

Below you can see an orphan block from my four-year, never-ending quilt.  This will be my Houston Quilt Festival Auction piece if I can get my rear in gear and get it on the machine.  Yes, I realize there is a seam ripper in the picture.  Remember I’m a WIP, need I say more?!

This quilt is  more like the four-year and some odd month, never-ending, quilt…lol    Goal 450 billion is to get that finished by the end of 2017.  I refuse to let it become,”The 5 Year Quilt”.

So I’m off to  practice what I preach and throw myself full force into learning, and understanding this new software.  Big girl pants are pulled up, zipped and belted tightly!


What changes have you recently encountered that has you hesitant to step into the new, and unknown?





Flat Lisa is STILL in Pennsylvania?? Say It Isn’t So!!

WHAT,  Flat Lisa is STILL in Pennsylvania?! Say It Isn’t So!!  img_8873

Where is everyone? I know quilters reside in places other than Pennsylvania, so why is Flat Lisa stuck in Pennsylvania? Okay, perhaps you missed the Flat Lisa Reveal, maybe you skipped the Flat Lisa Reveal, or I suppose there is a slight possibility you aren’t interested in Flat Lisa.? Regardless, I will say it again I am eager to view my quilting friends globally.  That being said I’d like, one more time, to introduce Flat Lisa! Share with me your quilting studio, classes, shows etc.(be creative if you’d like).  Simply right-click on Flat Lisa below, save it to your computer and print out copy.  Take a selfie with you and Flat Lisa and send your picture via email to Lisahcalle@me.com  –It’s that easy!!

****Make sure you include your location so that I can track where my adventures have taken me. All photographs will be posted AND you will be entered to win a copy of my book “Divide and Design”.  A winner will be drawn for end of this month.  You don’t have a lot of time, so come on quilting friends I know you’re out there!!



Bits and Pieces…..

Spring Show season is upon us and I hope to see many of you in some classes.  I recently gave a lecture at a local guild and encouraged them all to take some quilting classes.  Whether you quilt on a domestic, mid arm or longarm, you should peruse the classes.  Many of the classes I teach are drawing classes so it really doesn’t matter how you quilt.  So jump on in and sign up, there are so many talented teachers ready to impart their knowledge on you!

I will be teaching at MQX in April, HMQS in May and I will be in Edmonton, Canada at Sparrow Studios in July.   I will also be teaching this year at the Houston International Quilt Festival!!


I have started to mark my hand applique quilt, A Color of its Own, and am in the process of picking out thread colors…. I will be using FilTec’s Allure Buttermilk Silk thread and am in the process of choosing the perfect color of Aurifil Lana Wool.  Getting excited to start this project.



Tuesday, I will be traveling to Denver to film an episode of The Quilt Show with Alex Anderson and Ricky Timms.  Woo Hoo!!!  Excited to meet them and see some friends while I’m there.

Quilt on, My Friends,



Gettin in the Groove!!

I am sure it comes as no surprise to many of you, I LOVE ruler work.  So much so that I have my own line of rulers, Quilter’s Groove Rulers.  Since I have designed my rulers to do what I love with minimal markings, I was encouraged to create a class to teach you all how to use them.  If you already have some , thank you!  I’d love to hear how you use them and how they made your quilting easier.  If you are not familiar with them…. come to the Gettin in the Groove class to learn how having the right tool for the job makes life oh so much easier.   I will be teaching this class at two shows this year,  Birds of a Feather (Feb 7, 10:30a-12:30p) and MQX (April 10, 1-5)

I have 3 new rulers!  ProSpine™ Small, ProSpine™ Medium and ProSpine™ Large!  They each have two different size curves so that’s 6 different spines!  They will be sold individually and in a set.  I am so excited about these.  We will be using the ProSpine™ small in class.  I am expecting the shipment at the end of the week  so shipping will commence the first week of February.

Here is the class sample….

Gettin in the Groove Sample

Gettin in the Groove Sample


Sign up today!!

If you would like to know more about some of the things you can do with my rulers, go to the video tutorial page on my website.

Quilt on!


Latest Happenings…..

First , I have to thank you all for your wonderful name suggestions!  So far I have narrowed it down and these are the ones in the forefront.  I could change my mind as I am quilting but who knows….

Citrus Starburst

Persian Rose

Mimosa Blush

Navigating my Passion

Raspberry Fields

Raspberry Delight

Love to hear more if something pops into your head.

I am going to chronicle my journey with the quilting so make sure to subscribe to my blog.

So I printed off my black and white print out but I had some trouble seeing the area I wanted to work on. So I zoomed in on the center and printed that off.  Here is what  I have so far….


A couple of weeks ago, I spent a Friday at Olde City Quilts with Teri Lucas!  We were filming how Teri uses templates on her Domestic machine.  While I was in Houston, I got a lot of question as to whether you could use templates on a domestic machine.  The answer is YES!!!  Teri makes it look so easy.  I will be posting the link on Friday barring any unforeseen computer glitches, so stay tuned!! Here are some of the very talented quilters who used this method.  Come join us.


Quilt on!


Just when you think you are done…..

with the top that is.

I wish I could design a whole quilt top and then stick with the plan.  I tend to start with an idea whether it  be for a block or center medallion, could be appliqué or pieced.  I gather what I think will be enough of the fabric (which it never is and I scramble at the last minute to try and find more).  Once that piece is made it hangs on my design wall for eternity … ok, maybe not eternity, it just feels like it…. till it speaks to me.

So, I have been working on this particular quilt for quite some time… I am sure you are as sick of seeing it as I am…. well,  I thought I had finished it…New competition piece

BTW, I do need a name!  If you have any suggestions, I am all ears… right now, its Beloved but I don’t think that is going to be what I call it.

So, I thought this was it and was going to move on to the quilting… I shouldn’t have let it hang on my design wall for so long… because it spoke to me again….

I am adding some appliqué.  What do you think? ( don’t look in the messy closet)

Appliqué added.

Appliqué added.


Guess i better get to finishing this as  I had wanted to enter it into MQX.  At this rate, I don’t think it will be done.  😦

Quilt on!


Long Vacation!

This Christmas break seems longer than ones in the past, is it just me? Monday brings this vacation to a close when the kids return to school and I can get on with the business of quilting!  I have finished my quilt top and needed to purchase some backing.  I had my heart set on what I used for the border.

border fabric

border fabric

That was not to be…  Thank goodness for Maddie at Spool!  This is what we came up with

Backing fabric

Backing fabric 

So not only is my thread on its way but my now my backing fabric is too!  I guess it’s time to start designing!

Quilt on my friends


Perseverence in Spite of Disappointment

I remember when I first started quilting, I’d be walking around a quilt show and admiring the winning quilts thinking one day I would be able to whip something out as effortlessly as they did…. I now know, I was a little naive because I thought that these award winning quilters just had a vision and then proceeded to whip up the quilt. Boy was I wrong. There is a lot of hardwork and hours upon hours that go into these award winning babies. I call them babies because a piece of you, or sometimes a huge chunk, goes into each and every quilt you produce. Now, years and numerous award winning quilts later, I realize that there is a common trait that most of these quilters have in common besides oodles of talent. They persevere despite disappointment. Those disappointments could be anything from not having enough of the fabric they wanted to use, a quilt not getting into a show, resewing a block for the 5th time, their fabric bled when they were blocking the quilt or they used the wrong color thread in the quilting. Yet despite all of these…. they persevered.

Yesterday as many talented quilters were announcing that their quilts were accepted into a national show, I had a disappointment…. my quilt, Crown Jewels, was not accepted.


 To say that I was not disappointed would be a lie. Of course I was! Was my quilt not good enough? Maybe, maybe not. Most likely, it just wasn’t what the show was looking for this time around. (at least that is what I am telling myself) Being a competitive person, sometimes this is tough to take. Why do I bring this up? To show that no matter how successful we have been or a particular quilt has been in the past nothing is guaranteed, we all experience disappointments but it’s how we move forward that is important. So despite my disappointment yesterday, I moved forward today.

I am currently working on my next competition piece… This particular quilt has been ongoing since last year. I like to challenge myself with each quilt I do. This time it is my first time doing hand applique and I am loving it!! I am using some fabulous colors of fabric from Cherrywood.


Because I challenge myself with new techniques on almost all of my quilts it creates a lot of those “what was I thinking” moments. Along with the hand applique, that who knows if it’s any good, I drew out this great interior border around a center star… drafting it was the easy part. I then had to figure out how I was going to piece it and get it together…. after MANY attempts, I was ready to throw in the towel but I really LOVED it and refused to believe that I couldn’t get it together in a decent way…. 


I managed to figure it out and got it together in way that I was satisfied with…. but when I say it wasn’t easy…. that’s putting it mildly. I started this quilt back in May 2013, I finished this part of the quilt in Jan 2014 …. it drained me of my patience and creativity so I put it aside till about 2 weeks ago… that’s not to say I haven’t been thinking about it. 


I am now getting back to it and of course running into more obstacles… but it will all be worth it.. at least I keep telling myself that.

Happy Quilting