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Ask Crafty Chica

I receive all kinds of letters and questions. I’ll post them here when I can!

Hello Kathy,
I love your site and I have been taking heaps of inspiration from it. As an English born naturalised New Zealander I find the energy and vivaciousness of your work is like a breath of hot air, Salsa music in solid form. I wonder if you can guide me into adding more colour and energy to my work? I see how busy you must be so, any time you can spare, would be great.
Thank you again.
– Jo

Dearest Jo:

Thank you for the kind words! My best advice is to break out of your usual routine! If you have a favorite color combo, tool, technique or project – set it aside. Try something you would normally overlook. Even if it comes out wonky at first, experiment and find your own trick to call your own. Go for it!!!

Best of luck!
Kathy 🙂
P.S. Add glitter!

Hi Kathy! I was just wondering how do you keep all of your ideas organized?! I have a notebook that I decorated like your dream journal, but it’s really to the point that I cannot sleep because I have sooo many ideas running through my head!

What do you suggest for me to stay organized for my notes and ideas that I jot down? I tried doing it by project (i.e. crosses, pillows, paintings, etc…) but it ends up one big jumbled mess!

Thank you sooo much for inspiring me to be more creative and start crafting! It’s because of you and your work that I started making my ideas a reality!

– Brenda

Hi Brenda! Sure! Well, I have one sketchbook where I sketch ideas that come to me, and on the back page I jot down ideas. I always have a small notebook in my purse as well. I also have my iPhone where I take pictures of things that inspire me (I also use the voice memo on my phone too). It is never just one big book – I use different methods and then refer to them. At then end of the week, I scour over all of them. I use fun sticky notes to mark my favorite ideas to try first.

As far as your journal, it helps to make colorful tabs so you can flip to a certain section for a topic and add your idea!

Hope this helps!

Kathy 🙂


In your book Guide to Artful Sewing on pg 127 you make a fabric collage. How did you make the fabric images? I want to put fabric photos on a pillow but how do I make the fabric images to then sew together on a quilted pillow. Thank you for you help in getting the directions. I love your ideas.

Hi Jeannine!
There is a section at the front of the book that explains it but I can give a quick how to – you will need to buy a pack of fabric sheets (in the fabric section at the craft store). Simply print out the images from your computer onto the fabric sheet (you will insert it in your printer, just like a piece of paper). You peel off the paper backing – boom – you have images on fabric! Then sew away!! Hope this helps, send pictures when you are done!!
Kathy 🙂

Kathy, I finished the pillow today and it was a lot of fun to do. I used your measurements then bought a 12 x 12 pillow from a craft store. I made a pocket so I could slip the pillow in. I think our pictures are too big but I still love the idea. I think I might tack down the edges of some of the pictures with “hem glue” which is used to fix hems. You did the beautiful embroidery but I don’t have time to do it this time.
The pillow is for my nephew who is going away to college and shows his cousins, tios and abuela.
I am signed up for your emails and look forward to seeing new crafts. Thanks for answering so quickly. I always thought I had to use “iron ons” which don’t last so I was so happy to see your idea.
Take care,



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