Meet the CQMagOnline Staff

   
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Rissa Peace Root

Rissa, a full time Fiber Artist residing in Mississippi, took over as Editor and Publisher when Nora was diagnosed with cancer.  She has been actively stitching most of her life and has studied a wide variety of beading, embroidery and quilting techniques over the years. She has participated in needlework seminars across the country, where she has taken classes from many nationally and internationally known teachers; Susan O'Connor, Marie Yolande, Judy Jeroy, Lynn Payette, Bobbie Chase, Vickie Adams Brown, Carolyn Standing Webb, Barbara Jackson, Marsha Papay Gamola, Casey Bradford and Catherine Jordan among them.  

In 2002 she began Mississippi NeedleArts, a non-profit educational organization, and got it chartered as the first chapter of the Embroiderers’ Guild of America (EGA) in her state. She now serves as Education Chair and Newsletter Editor. Rissa is also the President and Region Representative for CyberStichers. In addition, she still finds time to serve as the Education Chair for the Tennessee Valley Region (TVR) and serves as the Administrator of Education Programs on a national level. Rissa was honored to receive EGA's Gold Thread Award for the TVR at the National Seminar in October 2006 and again in 2008.  She was also nominated for the South Central Region's Heart and Hand Award. 

Rissa is now an Exhibiting Member of the Craftsman's Guild of Mississippi in five categories: embroidery, knitting, crochet, handspun yarns and needle felting. She has a large web site devoted to the needle arts, complete with a stitch dictionary. (http://www.prettyimpressivestuff.com)

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Allison Aller

Allison was a design major at Cornell University, and this fundamental education has served her well in her 30 years of quilt making. She has been involved in pieced bed quilts, landscape wall-hangings, stained glass quilts, and crazy quilting, and is interested in combining all those genres in contemporary ways.

She lives in Washougal, Washington, where the beauty of the Cascade foothills and the Columbia River Gorge have a major impact on her palette and her subject matter. Gardening is her second love after quilting, and that plays a role in her work as well.

Her first book, Allie Aller's Crazy Quilting: New Piecing and Embellishment Techniques for Joyful Stitching, is being published by C & T Publishers and will be available on Amazon in March 2011.

Allison has been happily married to husband Robert, a retired airline pilot, for over thirty years. They have two boys, both of whom are computer experts, aged 20 and 24.

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Barbara Blankenship

Barbara’s love of art developed in early childhood. Her Mom was an excellent seamstress and taught her many forms of needle art at an early age.

Her ten-year love affair with crazy quilting began with a class taught by Jan Campbell of Lake Jackson, Texas. Jan organized a Crazy Quilt Bee from those students taking her classes and Barbara is a long-standing member.

At the Crazy Quilt Convention in Omaha, NE she met Victoria Adams Brown and credits her for her love of silk ribbon embroidery. She designed four ArtBras for Victoria’s breast cancer foundation and enjoyed the process of creating solely from the imagination. In her ArtBra “Grape Expectations” all but one silk is hand-dyed with hand painted highlights. The grapes are individually created and hung in clusters with seed beads.

She also enjoys sharing the beautiful art of crazy quilting with others. With the help of many international online friends she has created wall hangings for juvenile AIDS and breast cancer research.

Barbara currently designs for Artemis/Hanah silks. You can see her love of silk ribbon reflected in the flower designs she has created.

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Sharon Boggon

Sharon Boggon is a textile artist living in Canberra Australia who holds a Masters of Arts, has exhibited work throughout Australia and has works held in private collections and the Canberra Museum and Gallery. Sharon has taught in the Textiles Workshop and the Digital Media Studio at the School of Art, Australia National University since 1997.

After life time interest in embroidery Sharon has recently returned to her studio to pursue a long held interest in the art of embroidery and crazy quilting full time. With hopes to develop a second career Sharon is following another key interest in her life that of assisting those who are currently in the field of recreational textiles to develop self expression and their creative abilities.

Sharon Boggon has a stitch dictionary which has been online since 1997. In January of 2004 Sharon Boggon started a blog under the title In a Minute Ago. Originally seen as a place to keep track of the numerous sites she has become interested in, it demonstrates how this technology can link up and assist creative communities online.

InAMinuteAgo (Sharon's home page and stitch dictionary)  
Pin Tangle (her textile weblog)

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Leslie Ehrlich

Leslie is a Colorado native through and through. She grew up riding horses in rodeo events, with the Westernnaires and on trails in the Rocky Mountain High Country. She currently resides in north eastern Colorado with her husband and cherished fur kids, where Longs Peak and Twin Sisters make up part of the spectacular view.  When she was not riding, she was creating things out of whatever she had available. Leslie had a needle in her hand from the age of five; she made stuffed animals, pillows, doll quilts, table cloths, placemats, and more. She has also explored other media along the way.

Leslie was introduced to crazy quilting in her teens when she read a Judith Baker Montano book, and has been hooked ever since! Her work as an HR Director took up all her daytime hours until 9/11, when she was laid off due to company cut backs.  She began to embroider full time, both by hand and with her commercial embroidery machine, and to cultivate her crazy quilting abilities. She utilizes a great deal of beading on crazy quilts, along with Brazilian Embroidery and fabric manipulation. Trees are one of her favorite motifs. Leslie says she loves the dimension and texture that can be brought to the fabric.

Carrying on needlework tradition is important to Leslie, and she is in the early stages of developing an organization dedicated to crazy quilting. She is also a member of many online crazy quilting and needlework groups. She is one of the moderator/owners of the Crazy Quilting International Yahoo group, which is her favorite!

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Maureen Greeson

Maureen has always had a love for doing hand work. She is self taught and enjoys experimenting with new and "easy" ways to accomplish an idea.

She was a porcelain dollmaker for many years and owned and operated one of the largest doll supply distributorships in the U.S. She has won awards for her antique reproduction dolls and has designed patterns for doll costumes, some of which were featured in Doll Crafter Magazine. She also won the Best in Show prize from a contest Martha Pullen ran in her Sew Beautiful Magazine for her submission of a silk ribbon embroidered cottage complete with an 8" doll and costumes. It was featured with complete instructions in two issues of that magazine.

Dollmaking lead her to different avenues of finding vintage laces, fabrics, etc. and the addition of silk ribbon embroidery for her doll costumes. After seeing an antique crazy quilt at one of the vintage textile shows, the rest is history, she was hooked and never looked back. Dollmaking was out, CQ was in!!

Maureen also has a entrepreneurial side and thoroughly enjoys the hunt for things others will find useful for incorporating in their projects. She has always shared her ideas and encouragement openly.


Jakkie Lease

Art has always been woven in and out of Jakkie’s life. Her mother was a tailor by profession, and accomplished needlewoman by desire. When she and her sisters were small girls, she would let them use the sewing machine to make doll clothes. They were so small that she moved the foot peddle to the sewing machine top. She taught them to use the foot peddle with their elbow!

Her love for specialty quilting was a gift from her Mother; she was taught that patience and the finished product were the reward.

Jakkie is a member of Watercolor Workshop, Wet Canvas, Allegany Arts Council, Allegany Area Art Alliance and several Yahoo groups focusing on crazy quilting. Some of her paintings and crazy quilt needlework is currently showing at The Gallery in Oakland, Maryland, Arts at Canal Place, Culinary Café, The Studio on Greene, and Rocky Gap Lodge in Cumberland, MD.

Her fondest joy is sharing the love for needlework and painting.

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Lynn Schoeffler

Lynn Schoeffler is a long time resident of Southern California, and actually admits to enjoying the urban sprawl with its many opportunities to experience textile art in a myriad of cultural and historical formats.

Growing up surrounded by the dedicated and loving homemakers of her family, she came to appreciate and understand the art that was practiced by her Grandmother, Aunts and Mother—that of beautifully crafted and well made clothing, household furnishings, toys and dolls. These women could turn their hands to anything.

Her own path into creative needlework started with embroidered doilies and huck towels as a child and progressed into most forms of embroidery and needlepoint. Learning Brazilian Embroidery from some of the first practitioners in this country, Lynn began to teach classes and to design and sell BE projects to local stores. Crazy Quilting was a natural and inevitable next step, encouraging growth and exploration of many fiber art disciplines.

Lynn and her husband of 35 years own and operate their own business and have raised two great kids in the meantime. She jokes about how crazy quilting has involved all members of the family—her daughter and Mom scout antique and bead shops, her son dispenses computer and camera help, and her husband handles much of the framing and finishing work.

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Julie Yonge

Although born in Little Rock, Arkansas, Julie’s family was always on the move as she grew up; she attended eight different schools. Her teen years through college were spent in and around New Orleans, Louisiana. She moved to Houston in the early 80's as a single mother, but now lives about 40 miles south of Houston, in the country happy as a clam with her dear husband and a menagerie of animals. She is a licensed wildlife rehabilitator, although her sewing has now taken priority. She has grown twin sons, both graduates of the University of Texas, who live in Austin. She is unofficially retired from Amoco Production Company where she was a Remote Sensing Technologist for fifteen years, doing computer processing of digital satellite imagery for geological, geophysical and environmental interpretation. Along with sewing, reading, gardening and church activities, she enjoys taking “road trips” with her stitching friends, going on stitching retreats and maintaining their humble home and acreage.

She began crazy quilting and SRE only six years ago when she visited a local quilt guild and heard a wonderful presentation on crazy quilting. She knew instantly it was what she had been looking for, a wonderful artistic outlet combining so many techniques, fabrics, embellishments and textures. She took a CQ class and immediately began pulling together stash (definitely a large part of the fun of crazy quilting), practicing stitches and reading everything she could on crazy quilting. She joined a local CQ Bee and has taken numerous classes in Dallas and at the Houston International Quilt Festival on crazy quilting, beading, embroidery and mixed media with amazing teachers and artists such as Victoria Adams Brown, Mary Jo Hiney, Helen Gibb, Judith Baker Montano, Lesley Riley, and Nancy Eha to name just a few. She networks with fellow CQers and stitchers as much as possible, joining in group projects when she can. She has totally fallen in love with the "world of crazy quilting" and all that that entails...from the wonderful fabrics used to its history and being able to pull little pieces of the past into the work; and the amazing and talented women she meets along the way. Goo-gah is now an important word in her vocabulary! Being creative each and every day in some way is very important to her well-being as well as continually stretching her mind and learning – being receptive to new ideas. It is always such a joy for her, and yes, sometimes a delightful surprise to see a creation come together and even more of a joy for her to share it with others.
 

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Nora Creeach

Nora was a founding member of the CQMagOnline staff.  She served as Editor for many years and kept the magazine alive through sheer force of will. She was diagnosed with terminal cancer in 2008 and passed away in late November 2008. 

Nora was married to the same man for over 35 years and they had two sons. Her sons made Nora and her husband grandparents nine times and great-grandparents four times.

Fifteen years ago she designed and built their dream retirement home, a log cabin, in East Texas in the resort area of Lake Tawakoni. Where they retired and enjoyed country life.

Nora's was a crafter her whole life. In her family it was considered an insult to purchase gifts. They felt that if you didn't care enough to make something for someone, you shouldn't bother with a gift at all. She was raised in Canada where she was taught by French Nuns. Because of the harsh winters, they had a lot of indoor activities which included learning many of the different crafts and needlework.

Knitting, crochet and tatting never "took" with her. It seemed the more she tried the more nervous it made her and the tighter her work became until she could no longer insert the needle to make the next stitch. Conversely, embroidery was something that relaxed her and she loved it from the very beginning.

Silk Ribbon Embroidery was Nora's personal love. She's taught "in person" classes in the past and online at Crafty College.

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