Saturday, December 2, 2023

Gidget and Chloe, Secret Life of Pets Panel Quilt - a bit about my process in making this quilt!


Thought I would write a bit about the most recent gift quilt I have been working on. It is a Panel quilt, the center panel is "Gidget and Chloe" from "The Secret Life of Pets" Movie. I purchased the panel a while back, with the thought of practicing my free motion quilting on it, and it just makes sense to make it into a quilt too!

Finished Gidget and Chloe quilt top on my design wall.

I'm making this quilt for a young cat lover, so I added some cat embroidery on purple fabrics which coordinate with the center panel. I chose various shades of purple for variety. The embroidery was completed using my Brother SE2000 machine and my Bernette B79 machine. I added the Brother machine to my studio this past June, so I have been trying out its features. I used designs from Bernina and Brother for the embroideries. I also used a Sulky Yarn Ball Cat embroidery on the quilt - it is in the top left and lower right borders. I added text to some of the embroideries and combined flowers and butterfly designs with the cats. The pink border has a small butterfly print on it. 

Sulky Yarn Ball embroidery design on quilt

Quilt detail, rose embroidery

Quilt detail, Cat Face embroideries

Detail on Quilt, Kitty-Cat embroidered block

I purchased a light blue cat print to add to the quilt - I wanted to keep the quilt from becoming a pink and purple only quilt! The light blue print helped me extend the color story of the quilt. I then was able to add fabrics in complimentary colors that go with pink, blue and purple. 

I watched a fabric presentation recently where a quilt designer mentioned that you shouldn't pre-wash your fabric panels, because they can stretch out of shape. I discovered this is true, when I went to work with my panel. I had to trim the panel down, then I added purple strips around the edges to restore the borders.

Tip: I actually used a tip I heard about many years ago - for fabrics, there are always 2 sides. The dark purple fabric I used for the border had a print on one side - I liked the solid reverse side better, so I used it that way! I think this is the first time I have used this tip!

I picked out a lot of my fabrics intuitively - I thought why am I choosing polka-dots from my stash? Then I realized the center panel had a polka-dot pattern in the background - so it made sense! The polka-dot prints are Benartex fabrics I have had in my stash for a while, so I am glad they are finding a new home on this quilt.

This was a fun quilt top to piece together - I started with 6 x7 inch rectangles for the embroidery, and added 6x6 inch squares. When it didn't fit together, I just cut some of the squares to fit and let it go together. A fun, no stress process!

There was a bit of puckering around the embroideries, but when I began to quilt around them, it is disappearing. The quilt is on the frame, and gradually getting finished. It is a fun process!

I hope you enjoy hearing a bit about this quilt! I will share some photos when it is quilted and completed too.

Many Blessings to you!

Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk

Thursday, October 5, 2023

My ornaments have been published in Fons and Porter, Love of Quilting, November/December 2023 issue!


I have some fun news to share! My silk holiday ornaments with decorative stitching have been published in the Love of Quilting, Nov/Dec 2023 issue! 

Silk Splendor Ornaments displayed on tree

Silk Splendor Bird ornament

I love having them in the holiday issue. There are other beautiful projects in the issue to inspire you for the holidays! 

Also, instructions on making Scandinavian Star ornaments - I may have to try that, they look like fun.

Love of Quilting Nov/Dec 2023 issue

You can check it out at:

Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk

Friday, September 22, 2023

Garden/Kitchen projects we have been working on! And a quilt top waiting to be quilted!

Hi everyone!

It is starting to feel like Autumn here, Happy Autumn Equinox! Only 2 or 3 Hummingbirds remain at our feeder. Lots of other birds have flown off (to migrate, I guess!). We saw a few Ravens in the area, and the Geese have returned, flying in formation over our house in the morning and evening. (We are near a river, which flows through our town.) I'm happy we survived the extra hot temperatures this year and it is feeling nice outside now.

I have been wanting to post for a while, have been very busy with a bountiful orchard this season. We have been harvesting, freezing, drying and canning fruit! I have been using the Steam Canning process with my Victoria Canner. It worked well, using the indicator on the top of the canner as an aid when processing. The process kept our kitchen from getting so hot!

Here are some photos of canning in the pantry (I apologize for the bad lighting) :

Canning - Apple Sauce and Fig Jam

Canning, Blackberries and Blackberry Jam

Canning Jars, Asian Pear Jam, Blackberry Jam and Applesauce

Caning in our pantry

This is the most fruit we have had - so I have had to take time from creating in my studio to harvest and preserve. My husband has been helping with preparing the fruit with me and drying too. 

We had enough peaches to freeze (will make pie later), Stella cherries with extra to freeze, tons of Blackberries, for freezing, canning and I made some Blackberry jam and Blackberry fruit rollups. Also grapes - we made some rollups with Blackberries and grapes combined (if you use this combination you don't need to add sugar). Our raisins didn't turn out as well, too moist.

We even had a few nectarines and plums for eating. It wasn't a good year for apricots and almonds though (we did get a bit of hard frost). 

We harvested Asian pears and Apples (we gave away most of these to neighbors, friends and to a bakery in town). We froze some apples, then dried some and canned applesauce and Asian pear jam. I made the Asian pear jam without sugar or honey, since they were sweet, and applesauce without sugar, since they had a great flavor.

Then, have been harvesting our Chicago Hardy Figs! They do well in our area (zone 8b, Central Arizona, though this variety is hardy in colder areas, also). We dried some and I made some Fig jam (I added some honey, a bit of sugar and some molasses). I'll use the jam to make Fig Bars later on!

Today we will be making Fig roll ups and trying our hands at drying some Jujubes! (note: they both came out great!)

We also harvested Persimmons and Yali Asian Pears, here are some of the Yalis on our counter:

Yali Asian Pears on counter

Hand holding large Yali Asian Pear

We will be harvesting our large hard Pears, Utah Sweet Pomegranates and Pecans yet this year. All have been doing well! The heat seems to have kept some of the Codling moths away. Though, you still have to be careful when eating the fruits they like to eat.

It will be nice to have the fruit to use, especially since not every year is as good as this year has been! If we have more good years, we will share more food too!

I did manage to piece together a quilt top for one of my great nieces. She loves cats. I will write about that in my next post! Here is a photo of it on my design wall:

Pieced Gidget and Chloe Quilt Top

Wishing everyone a beautiful Autumn!

Blessings to you,

Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk


Thursday, June 15, 2023

Great news! I've had a project published in the Quiltmaker July/August 2023 issue!

 Hi everyone,

I have some fun news to share! My Fruit Basket Table Topper Quilt and Placemats project has been published in the Quiltmaker July/August 2023 issue. I was even surprised to find my project on the cover! Very exciting!

It was a fun process, once my design was chosen by the editors, I got to choose fabrics to use in the project. I decided to use some beautiful Benartex fabrics. I received the fabric from Benartex and made this little quilt and placemats. I had used my EQ8 design program for designing this project. Sometimes I make improvisational quilts, or draw the design from scratch, but this time I chose to use EQ8. It was made in December of 2022 - so I was busy during the season! It was a lot of fun and very gratifying to make! And with the wonderful instructions in the magazine you can make your own version too!

There are some great projects in the magazine - all about food, kitchens and cooking. It is a beautiful issue! 

Here are some photos of my project:

Fruit Basket Table Topper Quilt and Placemats

Fruit Basket Table Topper Quilt and Placemats

Quiltmaker July/August 2023 Cover

You can check out the digital copy at

Hope you will be inspired by this beautiful issue full of fun and inspiring projects!

Blessings to you,

Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk

Thursday, March 23, 2023

Great news! My project has been published in Love of Quilting May/June 2023 issue!

Hi everyone,

Happy Spring!

Excited I can finally share this! My Yo-yo pillow design has been published in the Love of Quilting May/June 2023 issue!

I worked on this project last November! It was inspired by a quilt made for one of my nieces. I envisioned this pillow for my Studio reading/hand-stitching corner. The magazine has other great projects in it also, I love the cover quilt too!

The issue is all about trying out new techniques. There are some beautiful projects and great articles in this issue! Have been loving my Love of Quilting subscription!

The digital issue is now available online at:

@_quilting_daily #fonsandporter #quiltingdaily

Here are some photos:

Magenta Yo-yo pillow

Blue and Magenta Yo-Yo pillow in chair

Magenta Yo-yo pillow

Blue Yo-Yo pillow

Love of Quilting May June 2023 

Wishing everyone a good Spring! I will post some Spring photos later, lots of blossoms to enjoy in our orchard and we are getting lots of rain!


Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk

The Bernette b77 and WHY YOU NEED IT!


I have the Sewing/Embroidery version of this machine, which I purchased at

Mine is the Bernette B79. It is an amazing machine, check out the B77, the Sewing only version. They both have great features that you can grow with!

Saturday, March 4, 2023

Happy March and some exciting news!


I've been busy in my studio and haven't posted in a while, though I have shared some videos I have been watching on my blog. I like watching Sulky's Sew What? show and also Sewing Machines Plus shows on Youtube. They are a fun way to learn some new things and be connected a bit!

In November and December of last year (2022) I had 2 projects accepted by publications, so I was busy with that. The first project was for Love of Quilting magazine and the second one was for Quiltmaker magazine.

I just received the advance copy of the May/June Love of Quilting magazine, and the project I submitted looks great - I am also feeling inspired by their cover quilt on this issue! I will be writing a blog about it soon.

Here are some of my first projects of the year (I will write about the first one in this blog, and then follow up in a 2nd blog):

In January I worked on a New Year's Eve Sew Along project I participated in with It is the Sally Tomato Smith Tech Organizer. I was busy New Year's eve, but was able to start and finish the project in January. There was a kit available using Faux leather, but I chose to use cork for my project and I was able to use materials I had on hand for the rest of the project. With the project you get pdf instructions, a video you can access on (it is kept in your account so you can access it after completing the project, if you would like to make additional organizers).  The project price also came with 5 beautiful embroidery designs, which included 2 beautiful large butterfly designs. The designs are what convinced me to sign up! You can still access the event recording on the Sulky educational site at: It is listed under Special Events (scroll down!). 

Here are some photos of the project I made:

Closed organizer - I used one of the butterfly embroidery designs,
the monogram is from lettering on my Bernette B79 embroidery machine

Open organizer - The Enjoy the Journey embroidery is from the Sew Along, I added a hummingbird from designs on my machine, also some decorative stitching from my machine. I lined the inside of my organizer with purple cotton batik fabric. I also simplified the pocket on the right (in the pattern it is divided and has card slots). The right side has a sleeve for a tablet, the left has a zippered pocket.

View of the left side

View of the right side

Organizer without notebook inside. I used left over mask elastic for my elastic notebook holder. I braided the elastic to give it a nice look. (I had purchased a large supply, so now I am having fun repurposing it! It was on sale when I bought it!)

Closed organizer.

I'm looking forward to using this organizer. I plan to use it to hold a tablet and some writing and drawing supplies. It was fun to make. The project has very small seams (1/8 inches). I found marking the seam lines with a disappearing ink pen made it easier to sew them. The rest of the project is fairly easy and you just have to take your time to make it turn out nice, one step at a time! I liked participating for the feeling of accomplishment you get from trying something new.

There are many great educational offerings on the website, check them out to see what you can learn to do! Many are free or low cost offerings. There are also kits and great supplies available for the projects.

Happy 2023, Year of the Rabbit everyone!


Denise A. Buchwalter-Losczyk