Bloomington, Indiana

March 5th, 2010

Welcome to Bloomington, Indiana! If you are within driving distance, you must add this annual show to your calendar! The town of Bloomington is charming – built around a court house square, the shops and restaurants lure you into their cozy establishments. Bloomington is home to Indiana University, and is culturally diverse.

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Highlights on this trip are dining each evening with fellow teacher friends. The first night four of us went to a great restaurant/pub called the Irish Lion.  PHOTOS  It is an old building, beautifully preserved, as if you walked into a honest-to-goodness Irish tavern. We dined on corned beef and cabbage, beef pie and other specialties.

Workshops the first day ‚Äď Thursday ‚Äď went well. Mine was a Quick & Easy Broken Star without Y seams. It was a 1-day class, and the students progressed well. Our classroom wall space was not good for mounting design walls, so I regret I didn’t take photos during class! Classmate John finished his quilt top (roughly 70″ square) and plans to piece the small broken stars (12 of them) to create a border and¬†increase it to bed-size.

Last night we dined at Farm Bloomington¬†restaurant¬†facing Courthouse Square. Chef Daniel Orr’s culinary skills are world-reknown. The restaurant is very eclectic inside, with artistic divisions between dining areas such as quilts, farm implements, and salvaged everyday antiques. The General Manager gave us a tour of the two-story restaurant, including the cellar. It is a wild collection of ephemera from bygone days, wall murals, small private rooms with Christmas lights strung merrily.

Six of us sat in a private high-walled circular booth right near the kitchen, just near the wall adorned with an antique bedpan collection! ¬†We ordered a variety of dishes, and our enthusiasm encouraged the chef, who plied us with additional tasty treats. “Here, try this – complements of the chef!”¬† I ordered the¬†Bitter Orange Glazed Hoosier Duckling with Saut√©ed Pumpkin and Honey Glazed Chestnuts. WOW was it tasty!¬† Other highlights: we tried a Minty Green Pea¬†Guacamole (unusual, creamy, chilled, slightly sweet) and the intriguing Three Floyds Gumballhead (which turned out to be a beer!).

The highlight of the evening, aside from our converstaion and “tales from the road”, was seeing musician/songwriter John Mellancamp¬†and his lady companion, who passed through the restaurant and ate in a quiet area within sight of our table.

I hope to see the quilts at the show¬†today, and will¬†post a message ¬†if I can take a few photos! My workshop begins in less than an hour, so I must run! Today I am teaching the strip-pieced Variable Hunter Star ‚Äď although this design looks very traditional, the fabric choices determine the finished project.

Product GIVE AWAY!!!

February 23rd, 2010

This is TERRIFIC! C&T Publishing is hosting a Jan Krentz Giveaway!  Simply click on the link, read all about the promotion, post a comment, either on the C&T blog, or on Facebook to get your name in on the drawing! GOOD LUCK!

FOLLOW UP:¬†¬† The lucky winner was Suzanne Golden, who wrote: “I love the design on Hidden Path, as it reminds me of a maze and could be a real challenge to complete, but well worth the effort.”¬† Congratulations, Suzanne!

Oh, Canada!

February 20th, 2010

I have just returned from Toronto! What a great bunch of quilters at the York Heritage Quilt Guild! We had a program and two workshops: Colorwash Hunter Star and the Summer Salsa Lone Star. Thanks to the wonderful organizers:  Erica and Jeannie, Katie, Carolyn and Linda! Katie loaned me a winter coat, which allowed me to bring extra quilts!

It was great to show the newest book ‚ąí¬†Quick Diamond Quilts ‚ąí and quilts from all 5 books to the warm and friendly York quilters in Toronto. Even better? Watching the Olympics¬†in Canada as they cheered their athletes to victory! I admire the hard work – seven years of preparation – and think the Canadians are hosting a wonderful Olympic event.

One evening I went with guild members to Glow Restaurant ‚ąí which features a unique menu of local and healthy offerings.¬†Glow was located right near an ice carving display, and a small figure skating rink.¬†The ceiling¬†changed colors and the menu covers¬†had grasses imbedded in a thick plastic.

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NEW BOOK! Quick Diamond Quilts

February 13th, 2010

Watch for my newest book on newsstands this month! A few years ago I began brainstorming with quilting friends on all the quilts we could make with the Fast2Cut 45-degree diamond rulers. We had so much creative energy and inspiration to share!

Once the flurry fabric scraps settled, 32 new patterns were created ‚Äď far too many for one book. Thankfully the publisher agreed with me ‚Äď the designs could be sorted into two styles. Last year, my 4th title,¬† Quick Star Quilts was released, featuring 20 great patterns with diamonds pieced in star or kaleidoscope style patterns.


This month my newest book, Quick Diamond Quilts¬†is released ‚Ästinside¬†you’ll find 12 fresh new designs to¬†get your creative juices flowing!

Ricky Tims / Quilt segment on CBS

January 25th, 2010

Watch CBS News Videos Online
March 16, 2008

Amazing scenes….inside a toilet paper roll?

January 17th, 2010

You will enjoy this link! Artist Anastassia Elias has an interesting website, and a special art form! Please visit her site to see more! (click on photo to activate a slideshow link). 

Artwork by Anastassia Elias

Road to California Quilt Show

January 13th, 2010

Tomorrow will be a big day! I am heading up the road to Ontario, California! What is in ONTARIO,¬†you ask? The big Road to California Quilt Show, of course! No, I am not teaching! WHOOPEEEE! I get to be “one of the girls” and attend a workshop with Melinda Bula.¬† Her work is lovely, and I am only taking a 1 day workshop to learn her technique.

The Ontario Convention Center is a big beautiful place with a view of the nearby San Gabriel Mountain range (on a clear day). We are predicted to have rain so it might be stormy. See you there!

January 15th¬†¬† FOLLOW¬† UP!¬†¬† The workshop with Melinda was relaxing and creative play time! I enjoyed the day away, and the quilts at the show were PHENOMENAL. The dense quilting was particularly amazing – I feel like an amateur compared with these master¬†quilters! Click on both slideshows for a peek at Road to California, and Melinda’s work on YouTube.


Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: 2010 Road to California

Wine Cake / Sherry Cake

January 10th, 2010

Our water aerobics class is so much fun! While we are huffing and puffing to get fit, we often chat with one instructor (between exercise moves) about favorite recipes, current events, and more. Here is Kathleen G’s recipe for her favorite Wine Cake ‚Äď my mother called it Sherry Cake, and it is REALLY DELICIOUS! (the alcohol bakes out¬†‚Ästthe rich aroma and flavor remains)


1 box yellow cake mix
1 small box vanilla pudding mix
3/4 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup sherry
4 eggs
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg

Mix all ingredients well with a mixer. Bake in a greased bundt pan for 40 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Let stand for 40 minutes before serving.


1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 tsp nutmeg
2 Tbsp. sherry

Whisk together (add sugar and sherry to get desired consistency) and pour over cake. (I poke the top of the cake with a fork so the frosting will soak in. I also wait til the frosting isn’t as wet and I sift powdered sugar over the top for a prettier effect!). Enjoy with coffee!! Kathleen

Jan’s note: Other options for topping:

  • sprinkle powdered sugar over top (lightly)
  • mix 2-3 T. frozen concentrated orange juice into powdered sugar, stir; spread over warm punctured cake
  • grate lemon zest and squeeze lemon juice into powdered sugar, stir & spread over warm punctured cake

Poo chi Exercise

January 10th, 2010

This is hilarious!

Glorious January

January 6th, 2010

Don and I started a new year’s tradition ‚Äď to see and explore more of our local surroundings. We went over to the coast near Torrey Pines and La Jolla (pronounced la hoya) to see the Children’s Pool Beach.¬† This small sheltered cove has created years of controversy…… philanthropist Ellen Browning Scripps funded the sea wall construction in 1931.

The grant stated…”That said lands shall be devoted exclusively to public park, bathing pool for children, parkway, highway, playground and recreational purposes…..”¬† The sheltered cove created within the sea wall proved to be a perfect place for California seals to sunbathe and rest with their pups, and also a place for the public to watch seals in their natural state.

Legal debates have ensued over the years, with various parties filing injunctions to erect baracades to protect the seals and humans particularly during pupping season, and whether to eradicate the seals, conduct an environmental cleanup and return the pool to its original intended purpose ‚Äď human recreation. With all the news coverage, year after year, we wanted to see the Children’s Pool Beach!

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Childrens Pool La Jolla