Saturday, November 22, 2008

Thanksgiving is Coming

Thanksgiving is quickly approaching. You can tell around my house since mom flew in yesterday. Talk has turned to recipes and shopping lists, but mom knew before she came that she would be helping me in the studio as well this week. Between commission pieces, my new pattern samples and exhibition deadlines I have several projects underway… not to mention my ‘for myself’ piece based on the desert sketches just made.

Mom dove right in yesterday and has me working to keep up this Saturday morning. I’ve been selecting fabric with the hope that I can pull everything together for 'eyes skyward' to keeping moving along.

If not I can always make a quick stop in Downtown LA to buy any ‘needed’ fabric on my way to meet up with the family by . I am looking forward to winding my way through the shops on Olvera Street. I’ll be searching out interesting embellishments, and I'll be sure to share anything I find with you here later on.

My upcoming interview with Kimberly Wulfert on is all set and ready to for December 3rd. I'm looking forward to chatting with Kim, whom I've known for a long, long quilterly time, but what I like best is that anyone can participate and ask their own questions 'live'.

Wish me luck with my shopping adventures. ~Rose

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Traveling & Teaching in Arizona

My recent travels to Arizona were spent sharing my new book with everyone at the Bernina Connection in Phoenix, and to teach workshops on Fast-Piece Applique and 10 Different Ways to Embellish.

The drive from LA to Phoenix was quiet and the desert that lay between these cities can seem desolate, but the fact that I had tons of ideas swirling around in my head continues to support my belief that cre
ative possibility is everywhere.

Along the trip I began to see for the first time the mountainous desert hills in a new way. Ridge after ridge seemed to appear like faces looking skyward. Welcoming the warm breezes that made everything look dry... withering almost. The quick sketches I jotted down on the journey hav
e already turned into a new design. The colors of the desert jumped out at me as well, (looking mostly like very dark chocolate). I am looking forward to selecting just the right fabrics to go in it.

An earlier trip along I-10 last spring introduced me to those watchers and at the time one in particular became the inspiration for the piece here.

I-10 Watcher (copywrite 2008)

My hostess in AZ (Sandee) was amazing and I will be forever grateful for the wonderful time I had with her. Not to mention the incredible Italian food she cooked up!

The workshop attendees were great as well. Everyone walked out of FPA with their quilts underway and I am looking forward to sharing some of these with you in the near future. In the second workshop everyone got to try their hand at lots of different ways to embellish their quilts. Sharing with each other was not only fun but enlightening as well, for everyone brings a little bit of themselves to each embellishment type.

Laura and Julie
with lots on ways to embellish

The trip across the desert was lots of fun, and my own sketchbook has several new pages of ideas, and I'm looking forward to getting into the studio and trying them out. ~Rose

When passing through Phoenix don't miss stopping by the Bernina Connection. For info on the store go to:

For info on my lateset book (Dream Landscapes: Artful Quilts with Fast-Piece Applique) go to

Monday, November 17, 2008


-Confucius, is quoted to have said,
“A journey of a thousand miles begins with your first step.”

Agreeing totally, I have to say that each step that has brought me to where I am today has been filled with experiences beyond any possibility to list. Blogging seems to be the way to document and share many of the new steps to be taken on my journey, and hopefully open up opportunities to find and share new pathways. This more than anything is my reason for joining the blogging world.

Welcome to RavenSpeak Quilts.
Just this one time, step back with me. Way back to 1995.
It was back then, while searching out ways to branch out from traditional quilting, that I discovered ravens. These are wonderful, beautiful, smart (alecky) birds that seem to tell stories to my heart. Back then they became an important step or element to bring story telling visually into my quilts. Ravens let my arty side run free and seemed just enough out of the norm for ‘the quilt police’ to want to deal with. I felt I had total freedom to create with and for my ravens.

Raven spirit continues to nudge me in new directions, and has his role at the beginning of this new path.
1996 – Why Raven Is Black
This was one of my first raven pieces.

2008 – Riding the Thermals
This piece is one of the most recent.

In between these two works I have found creative possibilities everywhere, and I am looking forward to sharing the inspiration and my journey here.

Hope you choose to come along.

I'm off to Arizona now for a visit to the Bernina Connection where I will be teaching. I look forward to the drive and the classes and the new inspirations they bring. ~Rose