OnPoint! December 2011

      • Dec 3 (Sat)  Longarm SIG meets at Barb Tatera’s home
      • Dec 6 (Tue) Board meeting
      • Dec 7 (Wed)  Comfort quilts meets: North Salem Ambulance Corps
      • Dec 13 (Tue)  General meeting at JFK School.  Guest speaker: Debby Brown
      • Dec 16 (Fri)  January newsletter submissions due
      • Dec 17 (Sat)  The Sticklers SIG meets
      • Jan 4 (Wed)  Comfort Quilts meets: North Salem Ambulance Corps

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December is upon us and we have had three busy guild months. Our November Boutique was a nice success.  I would like to thank Stephanie Santangelo for coordinating the evening and for her assistance in obtaining items for the Somers Library Display.

I also would like to thank each of you for your attendance at the guild’s meetings, lectures, classes and other activities.  It is wonderful to see everyone participating and it encourages our board to keep planning great events for the future!

As many of you begin to travel to warmer climates for the winter, please remember to stay in touch with the Guild.  Class registrations and Super Saturday sign-ups can be handled through the mail.  Just send your request via email to the respective coordinator and your check by mail and you’ll be set to jump back into the guild excitement upon your return.

There is nothing like a walk in the cold crisp fresh air of winter to help invigorate your creativity. After a warm beverage, use that energy to create a piece for our Guild Challenge, Reach for the Stars.  This challenge is friendly to all types of quilters and all levels of quilting.  The Challenge theme will be sure to keep your positive creative energy flowing during the winter season!

Happy Holidays to each of you!

“Take Time to Breathe Deeply and Enjoy”


Patti Calautti, President

In November, local quilt artist Leni Wiener taught a terrific workshop on how to turn a photo into an art quilt.  Leni’s method is simple and doesn’t require an art or drawing background.  All of the participants left with the start of a terrific quilt.

Later that day at our General Meeting, Leni’s lecture, “Color, Value, and Fabric” gave all of us — traditional quilters, art quilters, and everyone in between — fresh insight into how to make these tools (color and value) work for us in our own quilts.

In December, Debby Brown brings her long-arm quilting expertise to her lecture on December 13th.  Debby will not limit her talk  to long-arm machines; rather, her topic, “Finely Finished: Choosing Quilting Designs to Grace Your Quilt” will address the strengths and weaknesses of long arm machines and domestic machines.  There will be something in her lecture for all of us!

No workshop in December because of the Holidays — and remember, our December meeting is a week earlier than usual!

As you’ll read below, the Education Committee has lined up terrific programs for our January and February meetings. Programs returns in March with another successful local talent, Jane Dávila. If you have a project to share from our September, October, or November workshops, please bring it to Show and Tell in December.


Barbara Sferra, VP Programs

Thanks to everyone who reviewed their info for our membership booklet. Thanks to the efforts of Deirdre Abbotts, we hope to have the booklets ready very soon.


Quilter-of-the-Month Program

In December, our featured Quilter-of-the-Month is Jean Degl. Keep reading to learn more about Jean’s quilting and to see some sneak previews of the quilts she will be showing.

We are still looking for Quilters of the Month for February, March, April and May. If you would be willing to share your quilts with the Guild at one of those meetings, please let me know as soon as possible. It doesn’t involve much effort and we all learn so much about quilting and one other by looking at our quilts.


December’s Quilter of the Month

Jean Degl, who has been a member of Northern Star for two years, is our Quilter of the Month for December. Jean started quilting in the mid-eighties. She was mostly self-taught, learning from books, until she found Claire Oehler and started studying with Claire (as so many of us did!).

Quilting was a hobby that Jean was able to do just for herself, squeezing it in wherever she could while raising a family and having a career. As Jean says, “I am inspired by way too many things and love the challenge of a new idea or technique.” Jean says that she loves being part of the Guild and is eager to show her quilts as a way of demonstrating how much we all learn from one another.

Jean’s work runs the gamut of different styles and shows her evolution from early hand work to her current efforts on her new longarm. We hope you enjoy looking at Jean’s quilts in the cafeteria before the December meeting.  Jean will be available to answer any questions you may have.


Diane Linker, VP Membership

Wow!  If your last name begins with the letters G, H, or I give yourself a big pat on the back!  You treated our members and impressed our November guests with your generous contribution of snacks both sweet and savory.

As a reminder, in December we’ll dispense with the alphabetical order and ask each of you to share a favorite Holiday snack food. Cookies, dips and spreads are always welcomed. Once again, please pre-cut food into single-serving sizes and bring a travel mug so we can cut down on waste.

Food Drive

This year, we are replacing the December meeting’s Holiday gift exchange with a Food Drive to support our local food banks, The Food Bank of Lower Fairfield County and the Food Bank for Westchester.  Please click on the links for information about these organizations and the immediate need within our community.

My partner for this project is Carolyn Finn.  On the evening of Tuesday’s meeting, we’ll be available in the parking lot to receive your donations of non-perishable food items. (We’ll park near the right turn into the parking area.)

Grocery store gift cards and checks will be gratefully accepted. (If you do bring a check, please write it directly to one of the two Food Banks; not to the NSQG!)

Some Suggestions:

• Mashed potatoes
• Whole-grain, low-sugar cereals
• Instant oatmeal
• Pasta; boxed macaroni and cheese
• Crackers
• Canned tuna/chicken
• Soups
• Carnation® Breakfast Essentials™
• Peanut butter/grape jelly
• White or Brown rice (2 lb. bags)
• Spaghetti sauce
• Dried beans
• Canned vegetables (corn, green beans)
• Rice milk (shelf-stable boxed/powdered)
• 100% fruit juice: boxes, cans, or plastic


Thank you all very much in advance.  I know you’ll be generous.

Finally, could I get a few “elves” to volunteer this month? I’ll need help at the hospitality table as well as the parking lot.


Meg Mooar, Hospitality

Winter Programs

Since the weather can be iffy in January and February, the Guild traditionally has enlisted members to give small-group demonstrations at the winter meetings, rather than engage a professional speaker. Members rotate around the cafeteria to view the various demonstrations and ask questions.

Tips and Tricks for Traditional and Contemporary Quilters (January)

Guild members from the Art Quilt Group, the Hand Appliqué Group and Comfort Quilts will present a variety of demonstrations for new and experienced quilters. You are sure to go home with new techniques to take you through the winter quilting season.

Journals and Notebooks – Inspiration for Traditional and Contemporary Quilters (February)

Several members have offered to share the journals or notebooks that help to inform their work. Including detailed notes and diagrams for each completed “Dear Jane” block; color notebooks; plans and notes for new pieces; samples of new techniques for art quilts, and inspiring mixed-media journals. Come see how many of our talented members use notebooks and journals in their quilting lives.

Special-Interest Groups (SIG’s)

Longarm – The next meeting is December 3rd at Barb Tatera‘s house and Barb will be doing a feathery demonstration. Dates for next year’s meetings will be posted on the website in the near future. Contact Diane Linker for details.

Art Quilts – Registration continues for our challenge, “Forms of A Dress.”  (If you can’t attend the meeting, Melanie Hulse can work with you via email.)  Bring your “Text on Sheers” experiments so we can all see what you did! (Kendell Storm demonstrated the technique at our October meeting.)  Kristine Wilhelm will demo her “tiny pieces and tulle” technique.  Show N’ Tell.  Our usual chatter and fun.  Contact Debbie Bein for details.

Hand Appliqué – Our December meeting will focus on various methods of making skinny stems. In addition, please bring show and tell items so we can see what you have been working on since our last meeting.  We also will discuss plans for future meetings. Contact Denise Isherwood or Kathy Kaplan for details.

The Sticklers – In December, in addition to “show and tell,” we’ll also spend time working on our blocks – an opportunity to squeeze in some extra sewing time during the busy holiday season.  Bring some hand-piecing or appliqué blocks that beg to be finished.  For blocks that require an extra step or quick seam, a sewing machine, iron, and cutting mat will be provided.  Newcomers welcome!  Please contact Carolyn Finn for details.

Kids Can Quilt! – Contact Jane Eyes for details.

*New* SIG! Landscape Techniques – Several members have expressed interest in a Landscape Techniques SIG. An organizational meeting will be held at 6 pm before the December meeting to discuss what members have in mind for this group.  If you’re interested, but unable to attend the organizational meeting, please contact Jane Eyes.


Jane Eyes, VP Education

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who donated books and magazines to the Library for our mini sale last month and a big thank you to everyone who made a purchase!

Please remember that suggestions for new books and DVD’s are always welcome.

And this month we have our first book review by Roxanne Lasky. Thank you Roxanne!

Book Review

May, Merry and Hahn, Linda J.  An Insider’s Guide to Quilting Careers.  Holley, NY: Quiltwoman.com, 2009.

Whether you are thinking about owning a quilt shop, making custom quilts or teaching on cruises, Merry May and Linda Hahn’s Insider’s Guide to Quilting Careers has defined possible opportunities in the quilting industry that fit almost any personality.

But the book is firmly ground in reality, thoroughly outlining the most essential considerations of quilting entrepreneurship.

Insider’s Guide to Quilting Careers emphasizes the importance of organization, record keeping and policy making as the foundation for success. The book focuses on the basic issues of setting up your business, from business plan outlines to insurance and credit card processing. It emphasizes the importance of networking and saves the reader valuable time by providing reproducible business forms for many career scenarios.

A valuable resource! — Roxanne Lasky


Jackie Fowler, Library


2013 Raffle Quilt

The 2013 Raffle Quilt, Double Duty, designed by Carrie L. Nelson, is being coordinated by Susan Fasnacht.  The quilt is made of log cabin and flying geese squares in a variety colors.  It’s cut from fat quarters using light colors (off-whites, beiges, light tans) and dark colors (red, blues, greens, browns, etc.) –  in what generally could be called “autumn” tones.

The Comfort Quilts group has given us a head-start by providing some of the fabric. Please check your stash to see if you can contribute to the cause! Any size works; the construction uses mostly 1-1/2 inch strips.

All donations will be appreciated, but here’s our greatest need:

  • Off-whites, beiges, or light tans: ideally with a small pattern or motif
  • Greens: dark green and fir tree colors
  • Purples: dark purple and plum colors

Please bring your fabric to the December meeting.  If you have any questions, please contact Susan Fasnacht.

2012 Raffle Quilt

Thanks to our members who picked up their raffle tickets at the November meeting.  Tickets also will be available for pick up at December’s meeting.  Please let me know if you need additional tickets.

Ronald McDonald Block of the Month

A total of ten quilts are complete at this time.  Many thanks to everyone who made blocks!  Also a special thanks to the members who have given their time to quilt and bind these quilts!  Well done!

Comfort Quilts

Upcoming Meetings:
• December 7
• January 4
• January 18

• All meetings will be held at the North Salem Ambulance Corps
• Dates subject to change.  If in doubt, please contact Carol Auer or Karen Carlson.
• In the event of inclement weather, an update will be posted to our home page.


Barb Tatera, Charitable Activities

Push the Limits in London: Reach for the Stars!

Create a quilt that represents the athlete’s mindset, with “Reach for the Stars” as its general theme. Your work can reflect the British scene, the 26 sporting events, the athletes, the participating nations – it is your interpretation in whatever quilting style you choose. We hope each quilt will reflect the excitement of the competition and the pride of those participating – in London athletes and in Somers quilters.

Guild Members will Vote and Award Ribbons in these Categories:

  • Best interpretation of the theme: Push the Limits in London…Reach for the Stars
  • Best representation of the place – London, UK
  • Best use of color
  • Most inspiring quilt
  • Best of Challenge

Submission and Exhibition Information:

  • Click for detailed specifications and requirements
  • Quilts that do not meet all of the specifications will not be accepted
  • All quilts are due on or before the March guild meeting
  • Quilts will be exhibited at a local venue in addition to our show (details TBD)


Carolyn Finn, Challenge Coordinator
Kelly Lockwood, Special Events

The Quilt Show Committee extends to all best wishes for a happy holiday season. May your quilting projects bring peace in the quiet hours between celebrations with family and friends.

Quilt registrations and volunteer sign-ups will begin in January.  The 2012 Quilt Show Poster can now be found on the website.


Caryl Castellion, VP Quilt Show

Attention Bloggers!

Do you have a quilt-related blog or website?  If so, we’d love to include a link on our website.  If you’d like to send a photo that represents your work, we can include that, too.

As always, please submit all information to news@northernstarquilters.com.


Carolyn Finn, VP Communications

Abbreviated summaries are provided here.  For additional details, please visit Members’ Marketplace on our website.  Have something you’d like to post?  Please send a brief description to news@northernstarquilters.com.

Do you have a quilt that evokes an historical era?  Participate in the American Girl exhibition at the Mount Kisco Library in February!  Please contact Carolyn Longevin or Mary Cannizzaro for more information.

Call for Entries – “The Many Faces of Jerusalem”  This international quilt exhibition is among several events to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Israel Quilters’ Association.  Entries due May 15, 2012.  Click here for more information.  NSQG Contact: Tamar Drucker.

Bird Fabrics Sought!  Cobb Stewart seeks fabrics with images of birds that are identifiable by type (e.g., robin, bluebird, etc.)

Vintage sewing machines available at the Deer Hill Thrift Shop of the First Congregational Church of Danbury.  Contact Betty Buccino.


Carolyn Finn, VP Communications

Margaret Phillips has received the Award for Machine Workmanship at “Quilts=Art=Quilts,” a juried exhibition at the Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center in Auburn, NY. The exhibition is on view through January 8, 2012.

Two NSQG members are among the award-winners at Houston’s International Quilt Festival in early November: Terri Gavin won Third Place in the “Digital Imagery” category for her New York Scenes – John Jay Park in Winter; Ellen Yamaguchi won Second Place in the “Embellished” category for her Starring Beads.

Debbie Bein‘s Allele has been accepted into the annual juried “Form, Not Function” show at the Carnegie Center for Art & History in New Albany, Indiana. The show runs January 6 through March 3, 2012.

Finally, Marie Sugar‘s Colors of Life was awarded First Place in the “Wall Hangings” category at the 25th Annual “Northeast Quilts Unlimited” exhibit, sponsored by View at the View Arts Center in Old Forge, NY.


Congratulations, All!

Shows Featuring Guild Members

Reflections: Familiar Stories/New Forms.” New Rochelle, NY: Lazarus Gallery.  Through December 12.

Material Witnesses: New Work from the Manhattan Quilters Guild.”  New York, NY: The Art Quilt Gallery at the City Quilter, New York.  Through January 7, 2012.

Quilts=Art=Quilts.” Auburn, NY: Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center.  Through January 8, 2012.

Form, Not Function.” New Albany, IN: Carnegie Center for Art & History.  January 6 through March 3, 2012.

Other Shows of Interest

Pocketful of Posies: Salley Mavor.”  Storrs, CT: Thomas J. Dodd Research Center Gallery, University of Connecticut.  Through December 16.

Uncommon Threads: A Survey of Contemporary Quilts.” New York, NY: Kathryn Markel Fine Arts.  Through December 17.

Fiber Futures: Japan’s Textile Pioneers.”  New York: Japan Society.  Through December 18.

Superstars.”  New York, NY: American Folk Art Museum.  Through December 31.

Patience to Raise the Sun: Art Quilts from Haiti & Their Power to Change Women’s Lives.” Lowell, MA: New England Quilt Museum.  Through December 31.

Patchwork from Folk Art to Fine Art” and “The Global Art of Patchwork: Asia and Africa.” Newark, NJ: Newark Museum. Through December 31.

Unfolding Stories: Culture and Tradition in American Quilts.”  Cooperstown, NY: Fenimore Art Museum.  Through December 31.

“Renaissance Velvets: Textiles for the Nobility of Florence and Naples.” New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art.  Through January 12, 2012.

The 9/11 Peace Story Quilt.” New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art.  Through January 22, 2012.

Collecting California.” San Jose, CA: San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles.  Through February 5, 2012.

Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival XXIII.”  Hampton, VA: Hampton Roads Convention Center.  February 23-26, 2012.

The Quilt Fest of New Jersey.”  Somerset, NJ: Garden State Exhibition Center.  March 1-4, 2012.

Many thanks to Nancy Hantman for researching and compiling this list



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