A quilter since 1997, I prefer designing my own non-traditional quilt patterns and decorative borders using needle-turn applique and hand quilting. The challenge of exploring and adapting new techniques to my interests and visions remains an ever constant journey. That journey was, and still continues to be influenced by my other hobbies of section hiking and photographing the Appalachian Trail, canoeing the Allagash Wilderness Waterway and birding. As a prolific book reader and performing musician, my quilt creations are also influenced by song, architecture and historical fiction and fashion. In 2008-2009 terminal lymphoma and the death of my husband had me venturing down a less creative path. I had lost the enthusiasm I needed for new inspiration. In the past my creativity was often piqued by new Hoffman fabric designs. I kept waiting and searching for that new fabric line; unknown technique; or fantastic pattern to bring back that small spark that could once again ignite my inspirational bonfire. And I found it sitting in front of me the whole time. I had every quilt magazine from every company known to women...saved every issue from 1997 to 2013. My new direction started by thumbing through every single page. I began categorizing issues by month and year, then photocopying articles and patterns I wanted to keep for future reference. I had never cut into or ripped out pattern pieces. So a week later, I bundled them with twine and hauled them to my next quilt guild meeting in an old red Radio Flyer wagon. My fellow quilters quickly and willingly took them off my hands with a promise not to return them to me or trash them. They all promised to recycle them to fellow quilters. Their collective excitement and happy, competitive fervor over every annual bundle gave me such joy and inspiration. I'm now looking forward to seeing what creativity those magazines have inspired in others. As for me? I'm pleased to report that I've just reached my 5th year of cancer survivorship and I have a very large collection of QIP's (quilts in progress)! It's amazing what a little house cleaning can inspire in oneself and others!