Week in Review 2023 – 10/20


I am thankful for so much. Number one on my mind today is the community of quilters who graciously share their work, techniques and so much more. I spotted this squirrel on Canadian Needle Nana’s blog a month or so back. She graciously gave me permission to use it. Thank you, Jocelyn.

I am in love with this photo taken by Jocelyn Thurston.

Do you think the squirrel is grateful for the tray of seeds it can count on? Undoubtedly. Of course, if you follow my blog you know I can’t resist taking a photo and transforming it into a new image all together.

Grateful Star

The thread painted squirrel is ready to add to the quilt.

Of course, the squirrel is the star. So, I begin by thread painting it. You probably notice that the tail seems to end abruptly. Not to worry. This isn’t my first thread painting. The fur at the tip of the tail is sparse, letting the background peek through. So, when I secure the squirrel to quilt top, I will add the finishing touches to the tail, too. Times like this I am thankful for my experience.

Let the staging begin.

Keeping it Simple

I am a fan of simple design. I also lean into the elements of design. So, when deciding where to “place” the squirrel, I opted for a tree branch. The green hand-dyed fabric is one I dyed myself years ago. I love how it suggests dappled light breaking through foliage. Note the diagonal line of the tree branch. Diagonal lines help the eye travel over an image.

The squirrel looks at home on the branch.

What do you think? Does the squirrel look as though it belongs on the branch? This is as far as I got in a week. Currently I am debating about whether to add some foliage in a few spots to soften the edges. There is time.

Rainbow Scrap Challenge

I finished my Rainbow Scrap Challenge quilt! Now the question is what to make in 2024. I am scouring Pinterest for ideas and saving them in my Rainbow Quilt board. If each of the blocks in the grid were 2″ this beauty would measure 48″ x 72″. If I opt for something similar, and I am tempted, something with fewer blocks is needed. Just one more reason why I am grateful for EQ8. I can try out different ideas quickly before I commit to them.

I’m linking up to the following posts:

By Gwyned Trefethen

I am an artist who uses fabric, thread and miscellany to create designs gifted to me by my imagination.


  1. I like how you’ve painted the squirrel but…squarely in the centre of a bare branch…well…I agree about adding smaller branches/foliage…maybe move him off-centre…That background piece is lovely but needs breaking up, I think…Just a few thoughts. 🙂

    1. Isn’t that a great idea for a RSC? I’m thinking 3″ or 4″ blocks. These could be string pieced in the color of the month. That would help eliminate all those too small to use scraps. 🙂

  2. I think, and just an opinion the squirrel needs a shadow under it along the branch. The branch needs a bit of shadow… so it feels 3-d. I’d soften the branch with a few twigs coming off, or leaves.

  3. Hi Gwyned, I’m looking forward to seeing your squirrel quilt. I seem to be feeding the squirrels and chipmunks more than the birds, who are getting scarce now. The birds may have left for warmer climates but the others are getting ready for winter!

    1. The squirrels and chipmunks here clean up after our birds. We have a bird feeder that shuts down access if the seed eater weighs too much. However, many birds reject the seeds sending them to the ground. Hence the squirrels get fed in the process.

      Fingers crossed I should finish the squirrel quilt next week. It finishes at 8″ x 8″.

  4. The squirrel is such an interesting project! I love how you take him from the original photo and add details of your own. So interesting to read your commenters’ ideas, too. The rainbow quilt idea for RSC 2024 is fabulous!

    1. What can I say? Duplicating a photo in fabric and thread isn’t something I aspire to. Instead I enjoy removing a featured person or animal from the photo and landing them in entirely different landscape. I also appreciate the comments I receive that encourage and/or make suggestions. It should be interesting to see what RSC I ultimately choose to make. There are so many good ideas out there.

    1. Nancy, it’s so much fun reviewing the quilts on Pinterest with a rainbow theme. There are some fabulous landscape quilts using a rainbow theme. Not sure how to build them month by month though. Glad you like the squirrel.

  5. The squirrel is fun, and just waiting for you to turn him into a piece of art! I love how he looks on the branch, and this background green fabric is beautiful. Maybe some dense quilting will add all the details – like leaves or small branches – and 3D effect you need.
    I love this grid for the 2024 RSC, by now I’m still wondering what to choose for next year’s challenge 😉
    Thank you for sharing your work in progress, and linking up!

    1. You know me well, Frédérique. I am thinking about creating some dense foliage with FMQ in the background. Just when I think I have settled on one idea for the 2024 RSC another idea suggests itself. Half the fun is the dreaming.

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