Monday, October 3, 2016

Rare Peeks of "Rare Bears": A Fundraising Event for Rare Science

My first thought when invited to create a "Rare Bear" for the Rare Science project was I was honored to have been asked.  My second thought:  "How do I make a bear??!".  I'd never actually made a teddy bear before.  But if ever there was a time to dive into a new project and swim, this was it.

If you don't know about this wonderful project I encourage you to go to their site and check it out.  You may want to join the Rare Bear Army.  I am now a happy member.  Does that make me a Private?  Or, since I've completed basic training, can I be a Corporal or something?  Oh, it doesn't matter.  I'm part of the army.  And I never knew I wanted to enlist, but I couldn't be happier.

Here is the mission:

RARE Science is a non- profit research organization that focuses on accelerating identification of more immediate therapeutic solutions for kids with rare disease potentially through repurposing currently approved drugs and other therapeutic approaches.

Did you know that, of the 7000 identified rare diseases almost 50% affect children? And that 30% of those children die before their 5th birthday?   I didn't, either, and I'm an RN.  This organization is working to raise money, awareness, data-sharing, and morale.  Please consider contributing in some way.  There are many ways to participate so go check the website and get involved. 

Here is the bear patterns developed specifically for the Rare Bear project.

You have NO idea how long it has been since I cut out a pattern.
You would be shocked....

But I cut pattern pieces and found that the bear went together very nicely.

They even sent some Rare Science fabric to use on the bottoms of her feet.


I thought she needed a nice heart.

Putting the head on seemed weird, but it worked.  I decided to 
"just do it" and not overthink or outguess the pattern.  It worked.

Here she is, sans stuffing.

I opted to embroider her nose and eyes in place.

She is beginning to look like a bear!

I'm not the only one who thinks she is pretty cute. 
Bizzi had to cop a snuggle while she could.

We played hide and seek.....

And I made her a bag out of my favorite color.
By the way, this little bear was created using fabrics from my soon-to-be released line
called "Urban Artifacts", by RJR Fabrics.

Are you going to Houston to the International Quilt Festival?  Please join us at the "Beary Rare Event" on Friday evening at the George R Brown Convention Center between 6-8 pm for a special event.  Details and signup are here.  The fee for two is $25, which gives you the chance to win a Bernina and some other great prizes!  Please come!  I'll see you there!

To see Ricky's blog post about the project and to view my  bear in it, click here.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

An Exciting Announcement: My Premier Line of Fabrics With RJR!

Introducing "Urban Artifacts"!

As we edge steadily closer to Fall Quilt Market next month in Houston, TX, I feel the time is finally here to let you in on my little secret:  I am debuting my first line of prints with the fabulous RJR Fabrics!

I can't link you directly to the swatches on the  RJR website as I think they want to wait until we are closer to the official launch in Houston.  In the meantime, I will be showing some little peeks of 
the wide variety of quilts and other objects that are being created using the line.  If you haven't already, please follow me on Instagram at @leslietuckerjenison.  Also:  I will be Pinning swatches, quilts, and other objects that have been created with the prints on a Pinterest board, so check it all out!

As many of you know, I have been a surface design artist for over 16 years.  As time has passed, the process of creating unique cloth prints and solids has become an important layer of my work.  The fabrics in Urban Artifacts represent textural prints that I made using dye, paper laminated to fabric with gel medium, soy wax, and all sorts of really unconventional things to achieve the wide variety of textural elements.  

The process of working with the wonderful people at RJR has been quite lovely.  I have learned a great deal about the arc of the project, from idea to printed yardage.  I couldn't be more thrilled with the outcome.  My hope is that these prints will appeal to all sorts of makers:  quilters of every style, bag designers, wearables.....I've even seen two teddy bears made from Urban Artifacts (and the truly incredible thing is that I was one of the bear-makers)!   That is noteworthy because I was completely out of my comfort zone:  I had never constructed a teddy bear before.  (Side note:  if you find yourself attending the International Quilt Market and/or Festival my bear will be part of the Rare Bear display in the convention center.  The collection of bears will be auctioned off to raise money and awareness for Rare Science, an organization that supports research for rare childhood cancers).
Please stop by The Quilt Show site for more information.

Urban Artifacts has 4 color "stories":  teal, rose, curry, and neutral.  

I am happy to share this news with you.  Please stop by again for updates.  I hope you will be interested in purchasing these fabrics and I REALLY hope that you will share your projects with me!
xo Leslie 

Bee Authentic!


Friday, September 9, 2016

Quilters Take Manhattan 2016-What An Event It Will Be!

I admit that I am more than a little biased about Quilters Take Manhattan as being an awesome event.  I have been involved with the event as a board member of the Quilt Alliance since the first time we "took Manhattan", and every year it gets juicier.

Okay, I can't promise you will get your hair styled like I did by Jay McCarroll, but hey!

What is it about this event that makes it so unique?  It is really a sort of hybrid of what we love most about quilt shows, guild meetings, workshops, and retreats!  Huh?
Well, look at the schedule of events and maybe you can start to understand what I mean:

This annual fundraising event, now in it’s 6th year in the Big Apple, is a weekend-long series featuring a full-day event at FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology) and evening cocktail party on Saturday, as well as Friday and Sunday tours of the Garment District, area museums, workshops and a Broadway outing.

The Main Event at FIT includes a full day of lectures, interviews, vendors, an exhibition of quilts, trunk shows, and the Quilt Match Manhattan quilt design challenge. QTM 2016 will be held September 23-25 with Main Event speakers Kaffe Fassett and Dr. Carolyn L. Mazloomi, and emcee Mary Fons.

Plus, you will be in New York! Do you know how great it is to be in NYC in September? Well, it is pretty wonderful, let me tell you. We have so many add-on events: walking tours, a cocktail party, and even a Broadway outing (and no it isn't to Hamilton: we are good but not THAT good).

If you leave a comment here or on any of the participating blogs on this hop you become eligible for a drawing!
Prize for Giveaway:
The QTM Moda Home Ticket provides a chance for those who can’t make it to the Big Apple to experience their own home slice of the event. Value of $35 ($30 for QA members). Winners of the Moda Home Ticket will receive a QTM Goody Bag stuffed full of samples and treats from our sponsors by mail, and email links to footage of the Sunday with Sponsors event, the Quilt Match Manhattan challenge and more.

Past QTM speakers include:
2011: Marianne Fons and Jay McCarroll
2012: Denyse Schmidt and Jennifer Chiaverini
2013: Hollis Chatelain
2014: Amy Butler and Mark Dunn
2015: Ricky Tims and Victoria Findlay Wolfe
 This funnyman (Mark Lipinski) makes it to the party sometimes  You just never know 
who might be here...

Want to read more about previous events? Here are a few other links:

Blog posts about the Quilt Alliance and previous QTM events:
Abby Glassenberg’s While She Naps
Chris Dodsley’s made by ChrissieD
Gretchen’s Amanda’s Baskets

Day 1 - Monday, September 5
Chris Dodsley @
made by ChrissieD
Pat Sloan

Day 2 - Tuesday, September 6
Victoria Findlay Wolfe @VFW Quilts
Erin Sampson - Aurifil @
Freespirit Fabric

Day 3 - Wednesday, September 7
Moda Fabrics @Moda Cutting Table
Denyse Schmidt on Instagram @
Debbie Jeske @
A Quilter's Table

Day 4 - Thursday, September 8
Jacquie Gering @
tallgrass prairie studio
Jessica Skultety @
Quilty Habit
Gotham Quilts @Fabric Nerd

Day 5 - Friday, September 9
Kim Niedzwiecki @my go-go life
Leslie Tucker Jenison
John Kubiniec @Big Rig Quilting

Friday, July 22, 2016

Tasmania Part 7: Our Last Day in Tassie

I tried to capture another photo of the beautiful full moon last night from our apartment....

We were very fortunate to have selected yesterday for our flight to the Southwest National Park.  Today's weather was rainy, windy, and generally unsuitable for most outdoor activities, especially flying in a small aircraft!
The girls and I opted to drive up to Mt. Field National Park.  Our pilot told us it was a beautiful area, and recommended the hike to Russell Falls.
The drive up was absolutely beautiful.  I wondered to myself if this must be what Ireland looks like.  High rolling hills, vineyards and other fruit orchards scattered over the hillsides.  For much of the drive we paralleled the Gordon River.

This is a wide, fast-moving river.  

Because of the rain we opted to drive up the sketchy gravel road to see what we could see.  We came very close to the top of the mountain when I decided that I was getting REALLY uncomfortable with the road conditions, which were (unbelievably) getting steadily worse.  I was driving on gravel-studded mud on a road that was essentially 1.5 car-widths.  I did meet a car a few times and it was hair-raising.  I'm not a chicken driver, but this pushed my limits.  When the rain started to get harder I decided I had gone far enough.  Also:  there was a sign at the bottom of the road that said it was unadvisable to be up on the mountain after 3 pm.  It was after 2.  Enough is enough.
Here was our "road".

A view from an opening in the foliage.  The road went up through huge trees.
I was very sorry the weather was as such that we didn't really want to hike because I think the
area has some very tall trees and interesting falls.  

Since I was the driver I was unable to take many photos.  

We returned to Hobart and dropped my youngest daughter off at MONA.  My other daughter wanted to go into town and pick up a few items to bring back to the States, so I took her.  We returned to the apartment and I began packing my clothes and doing a bit of laundry.  Since Tim is staying on for at least another week I can't really clean everything up.  

Our departure time in the morning is horribly early:  we need to leave the apartment at 4:30 as we have a 6:20 flight.  The three of us are on the same flight into Sydney, and then my youngest daughter is on a different flight from us remaining two.  She goes to Dallas and we go through Los Angeles.  The two of us part ways in LA:  she to Austin and I will fly on to San Antonio.  Tomorrow is "groundhog day" for us because we repeat Saturday twice.  I leave at 6:30 am and arrive into San Antonio at 2:30 pm the same day.  It is very confusing!  We get that departure day back on this leg of the trip!

Thanks for coming along with me on this amazing experience. I do hope I have the opportunity to return later this year.  There is a good chance it could happen since Tim's exhibition will be up for a number of months.  It would be very interesting to return during  a different season.  Being here, seeing so much art and jaw-dropping natural beauty has given me a great deal to think about.  Stay tuned for how that might influence my work!  xo L

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Tasmania Part 6: A Day Trip To Southwest National Park

We were excited that Tim could join us today and take a trip to the southwestern part of the island.
Southwest National Park is part of the Tasmanian World Heritage Site.   It is perhaps one of the largest untouched areas in the world.  Created as a biosphere in 1977, it is generally remained untouched.

The tiny locality of Melaleuca in the extreme south-west provides an airstrip and some very basic facilities, mainly to service the National Park Service.

That is where we landed today to take the water portion of our adventure.

The red dotted line shows the flight path we took today, landing in the southwest corner.

The water is very  concentrated with tannins from the local trees which gives it the rusty color.

Our pilot told us that the water is very rusty (and freshwater) on top, then saltwater layered below.
This lures sea life that would generally be found only in much deeper water.

A view of our sand/gravel landing strip.  This is composed of the calcium-laden rock seen in the mountains.

Our boat.

We had a Jenison skipper for a small part of our trip while the pilot did something up front.

Our pilot discusses the area we are touring

On top of a high hill during our hike.

Same hill.

This is a black swan beginning its water takeoff

Black swan, becoming airborne.

Reindeer moss. My daughter tells me it is very slow-growing and this is probably quite old.

The raised walkway along the shoreline.

More moss.  I thought it made these trees look like they are wearing leg-warmers.

Standing on the raised walkway over the shoreline.

We had another wallaby encounter!

We stopped at a strange little spot near the airstrip, complete with boat house and cabin.

Note the rusty water...

During the flight back to Hobart....

There were many glacier-created lakes.

The causeway over Derwent River in Hobart.