Here’s To You!


I am blown away by the number of responses I received regarding feathers.  Thank you so much for all the information that you submitted; I greatly appreciate, and WANT, the input! Rest assured that your valuable insight will contribute to the construction of an amazing feathering class!

Be on the lookout for a new “Feather Ruler”.  You read correctly, in addition to the upcoming class I also have a Feather Ruler in the works!  I still remain firm on the fact that everyone can create these beauties freehand, but a “combination” ruler will also prove beneficial.  This tool can be utilized during quilting, more importantly, it will encourage the designer to draw plumes while training and instilling the process to one’s memory.

New sessions, and products are headed your way!


Talk to Me Quilters!

Feathers… the technique I wanted to learn above all else.  I LOVE feathers, and couldn’t wait to master this technique.  I would invest hours, upon hours, drawing those beautiful images. But let’s be realistic the outcome of my first attempts weren’t very pretty. However, as practice would have it, my skills have matured and my confidence has grown in leaps and bounds since those initial feathering days.

Since I know how agonizing it can be wanting those magical feathers to appear sooner rather than later on your fabric I thought it might be beneficial to share my process. My goal is to prevent students from encountering the same struggles and frustration that I did many moons ago.

The class, “Perfect Plumes” is so close to launching! But before it makes its big debut I feel it necessary to make sure that the majority of students concerns are addressed during this course. “Perfect Plumes” will be a beginner class that guides you through the step by step process and basic shape of the feather. In addition, by the completion of this session you will also understand how to intertwine and hide feathers.  You can expect to have fun learning how to feather away on your fabric!

So before I launch “Perfect Plumes” I ask that you please send me those concerns and major struggles that you have come across when creating feathers. Your success is important to me, so give me your input! My mission is to demonstrate the tools and method that brings the amazing art of designing feathers to your quilting world!

Feathers Create My Happy Place







Feathers, feathers, feathers.  Yes, I do know how to quilt many other things, however, I absolutely love to quilt feathers.  As soon as I had finalized the purchase on my machine I was determined to master the technique of  quilting these beauties.   So, maybe you have just bought your first machine and are having the same thoughts I just shared of loving feathers , or you have a machine and simply haven’t taken the time to learn this technique. Well, then this post will come in handy!  Although this is an older video I thought I would repost it for some of my newer followers, and for those of you that have yet to tackle this motif.

The video I am sharing below is a tutorial on formal feathers, some quilters refer to it as the “hump and  bump”.



Whether you are new feathers, or just needed a refresher on fine tuning your skills I hope you found this video beneficial.  By the way what are your favorite motifs to quilt?



Never-Ending Quilt Lesson #3


I had good intentions, and  grand plans of getting a ton done on my never-ending quilt over this holiday weekend.  But as we all know what happens with “good intentions” it did NOT happen.  The weather on Saturday had the golf Gods calling me to my favorite place.  “Lisa, Oh Lisa if you grace my greens with your presence I will ensure that you have an amazing 18 holes”.  I needed no begging and with no further ado I was having a blast swinging my clubs.

Even thought I did NOT provide my 4 year UFO with  any TLC on Saturday, Sunday or Monday; I did get make sure I gave it some love on Friday.  So to ease my conscience I thought I’d share what I accomplished on Friday with everyone…as promised.

I agonized and agonized over what to do in this area of pink.  After a lot of painstaking consideration I eventually reached a decision but not before I mentally put myself through hell.  Thoughts where having a relay race in my mind “oh my, I am going to put the wrong thing here and it’s going to look horrible” and “what if I discover I HATE it, I’ll be picking it out till the cows come home” (sound familiar).  At some point I had a small epiphany.  And that was realizing that this quilt could already be perceived as ruined due to the bleeding that it incurred. Understanding this little notion had me putting aside any further fickleness on my decision-making process.


I contemplated many different ideas as to what I should be incorporating in the below portion of the quilt.  The thought of applying feathers was a brief consideration; but it was a fleeting prospect since there wasn’t enough space for them to become a reality.  In addition, the area in yellow just opposite of the pink was intended to feature the same technique, therefore creating a mirror effect.  Now as I reflect on my choices, in hindsight, placing feathers on one colored area and echo lines on the opposing colored area would have enhanced my design.  But if you think I am ripping anything out you are highly mistaken.  As with the bleeding color, this too stays and I move forward.

I’m not in love with the feather motifs that I applied, in fact, those I really did consider ripping out.  But thank goodness I am working hard on combatting my compulsive behaviors; because now they are starting to grow on me. I can’t say I love them yet, but maybe in a few more days we will move beyond the feelings of toleration.

So a few more steps along this adventure have transpired and as I move forward a feeling of excitement is beginning to stir within.  Hopes of salvaging this piece are becoming a possibility.

Lesson #3:  The lesson learned during my Friday quilting was this; prior to Friday the feeling  of being “hopeful” or “excited” did not exist.  This quilt has reminded me that regardless of our initial thoughts and feelings are, there is always hope in what we do.

Are you working on something that has you rethinking your original design?  Have choices you’ve made ended up pleasantly surprising you?

Please feel free to ask me any questions regarding my designs or choices I have made with thread, batting etc.  I’d love to answer any questions you may have.




Quilting for Customers: “How To”

Longwood quilt

Longwood Gardens Quilt  2010

Quilting for customers, yes this is a specialty that I was successful doing for approximately 10 and half years.  I loved it and quilted some 3000 quilts through this livelihood.  Are you considering expanding your quilting to the next level? If so, this is a wonderful way to make that goal a reality.

Trust is a HUGE word, and one of the best feeling in the world is when your customers embrace your talent, and depend on you to bring life and beauty to their quilt.  What does that feel like? I cannot imagine giving my quilts, which I consider my babies, to someone else.  Speaking for myself I pour my heart and soul into the quilting process and have no doubt it would be painful letting another individual take charge temporarily.  For me that’s one of the aspects of this profession that I find so rewarding, each piece is one of my client’s babies.

Calle boys

All three of my boys… back in the day…

To Be or Not to Be: What about this business appeals to you? Is the idea that you simply love quilting or are you looking for additional income? These are two significant questions to consider.  For those individuals choosing to quilt as a hobby, kudos to you! I say quilt away and surround yourself with all the creativeness you can gather; but please be mindful of those that do quilt for monetary reasons.  Being a professional quilter becomes very challenging when a customer declares my cost expensive compared to that of Quinn Quilter.  What my customer does not realize is there is a difference between Quinn Quilter and Lisa Calle.  Quinn Quilter loves this craft as a hobby; Lisa Calle not only loves this trade but also has made a career out of quilting.  If you feel that this a business you are aspiring to become a part of then I can only offer this piece of advice; I quilt for the purpose of making both my clients and ME happy. I must remain true to the fact that this is a business and income for my family.  Therefore, the ability to lower my costs to meet the prices of those that are fortunate to quilt as a hobby is not something I can justify.  Yes, possess an attitude! If you have committed to making quilting a business then you are worthy of owning your quilting ideals,  methods AND prices.





It’s All About the Money: Begin by setting an hourly wage that you feel will be advantageous of your time, and materials.  YOU need to be satisfied with the price you are charging, and obviously this might be different for everyone.  I am not a low-priced quilter, as a matter of fact I’m fairly certain that I may have ended up being the most expensive in my area.  However, I knew what I wanted to make monetarily; I was realistic that I had other responsibilities that also demanded my time.  I was comfortable putting those obligations aside in order to run my business AND I was also comfortable putting those considerations into my quilting price.


The AH HA Moment: Retail and I have always been united, “Customers Come First” was my motto and I went out of my way to ensure my customers were more than satisfied.  Did I make everyone happy?  Heck no, I would never please everyone.  Boy, I definitely had my share of those clients that undoubtedly could not be appeased in any way possible. On those work days happy hour felt like it would never arrive!  Even enduring sweat and tears there were some partnerships that dissolved.  Quickly I would come to terms with the understanding that there were going to be professional relationships that would find me and my client parting ways…and Ah Ha… that’s okay.

Next Up: Mastering feathers, I always wanted to conquer this technique.  I could be found, pencil in hand, quietly doodling for hours and hours.  My dedication paid off and gradually I was feathering away!  Now did every customer love my new gift of feathering? No way, as I stated before there was, at least, that one customer who shuddered “Oh no I’m not fond of feathers”.  For the sake of feathers people quit bursting my bubble,  feathers are my thang!  My advice, don’t let anyone get in the way of your thang!

It Needs a Price Tag:  Well friends that is a post in and of itself!


Ohio Star – Take 3

I hoped you liked the 2nd Ohio star.  This is the 3rd and final Ohio star.  I tried to do simple…. I really did….. this one you can stop at any stage so part is simple then it goes to crazy….

Step 1: A little fun continuous curve.


Step 2:  Some outline quilting.  If I have curves…. I need straight lines as well.


Step 3:  center CC and added lines in corner blocks.


Step 4:  Added design elements in corners…. feather variation.


Step 5:   Added some straight lines with the ProLine 8.


Step 6:  Added some sand stipple to make everything POP!


So you see, I started simple but couldn’t stop myself to keep going….  I tried.

Here is a recap of the 3 blocks

Up next week is the Churn Dash block!

What will you create?


Did you know that…..

The Pittsburgh Knit and Crochet Festival has added quilting to their lineup.

If you are like me…. we quilters don’t just quilt…. we knit, crochet, felt, weave, dye and so much more!  Well, Pittsburgh Knit and Crochet festival has it all!  Come join me in my quilting classes or come learn something new!  I don’t have too many teaching gigs on the books this year but this is one of them AND I am teaching 4 hands on classes….

Totally Templates and   Gettin in the Groove for those who want to try their hand at templates.  They will transform your quilting!


Crown Jewels

Crown Jewels

Neon Lights

Neon Lights


Once you learn the tricks its pretty easy!







Feathers for the Timid!  Do you have  phobia of feathers and think they are out of reach…. they aren’t!

Not so Plain, Jane!


Longwood quilt

Longwood quilt








Pebbles, Echoes, Crosshatches, Oh My!   This is my new fills class.  Most of you know that I have spacial issues, I have learned to deal with it by quilting everything!  But how do you know what fills to use and how big/small to make them?  This class will help you out with those decisions.

I would love to see you all there!!

Quilt on, My Friends!


February Feather Friday! The Flower Feather…

is a beautiful and easy to execute feather… now, this is the last Friday of February but I still have one more feather that I’d like to teach so stay tuned as I am going to post the last feather on Monday…

If you’ve enjoyed February Feather Fridays, consider taking my Feathers for the Timid next time you are at a show!


Enjoy the Flower Feather!

Quilt on, My Friends!