Archive for August, 2009

Great Plates!

Readers of my last blog post have started sharing their “quilty” license plates. Hope you enjoy the selection.  They certainly are colorful and creative. (Please don’t email me any more, I’ve got to move on to other things!)


Great "Quilty" License Plates
More great plates
More cool plates
Still more license plates! 

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August 30, 2009 at 2:45 am 5 comments

Quilty License Plates

My vanity plateWay back when Jennie was a toddler (she’s now almost 26) I saw the first vanity license plate that made any sense to me. It simply said QUILTS.  I got it. And I wanted one. Badly. I wanted the one that said QUILTS and belonged to the lady I almost rear-ended as I appreciated her license plate, first from afar, and then from dangerously up close. But, I was willing to settle for something close as waiting for her to die probably wasnt’ necessary.

I let my desires be known, casually mentioning it to Steve.  Once. That is the Simms way, something I still don’t fully understand. If he wants me to get the hint, I need significantly more repetitions, preferably in writing, with a calendar so that I remember when holiday gift giving occurs. It always sneaks up on me.

As usual, I forgot about the vanity plate until late in October. I thought I should have had a quilt-appropriate word above my bumbper by then, so I took it upon myself to dial up the department of motor vehicles. (The lady with QUILTS was still alive.) After much thought I settled on  QUILT. My message to anybody driving behind me, or in front of me (at that time plates in the front were required too), would be to go forth and …. QUILT! I love to boss people around. I asked if QUILT was available.

The lady at the DMV said QUILT was taken. I was crestfallen. “Are you sure,” I whined?

“Yes,” she said. “Someone in Genesee County has it.”

“No WAY!” said I. “I drive all over Genesee Country and I’ve never seen a car with a QUILT plate.”

“WAY!” she said.

“Can you tell me who it is?” I begged.

She said, “No, that’s against the rules. All I can tell you is it’s registered to some guy in Flint.”

That did it! Somebody in Flint driving around with MY plate on HIS rear end? I think not. I knew all the male quilters in Flint. And it wasn’t any of them. The nerve of people I don’t know absconding with MY plate.

I consoled myself with trips to every fabric shop in Genesee Country. I checked the parking lots just to hunt down the owner of my plate, but mostly I bought fabric and felt better.

Several weeks later, when my birthday rolled around and it was time to get legal with the state again, Steve presented me with my very own vanity license plates! He was the guy in Flint!  And I have been driving around telling everyone behind me to QUILT for at least two decades now.  And we’ve been paying exorbitant amounts of money annually for the privilege. But to not do so would be like giving back the sweetest birthday present ever. No way! 

Do you have a quilty license plate? Want to share? Email me a photo of your quilted license plate by the end of August. ( Let’s see how creative you are. Email ONE photo, so make it a good one. Shoot it straight on.  I’ll crop out the background, size it, put it in an attractive collage and post it here on the blog. No fair shooting pictures of cars not belonging to you, I don’t care how great the plate. Quilty plates only. Tell your friends…

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August 14, 2009 at 6:50 am 23 comments

Panty Party Is Sincerest Form of Flattery

Friends and fellow members of the Mountain Laurel Quilt Guild in Wellsboro, PA were inspired by the Yo-Yo Sisterhood of the Traveling Panties and did their own dye job. When I questioned their relative cleanliness in the photo I was assured by ganggroup leader Peggi Yacovissi that they wore a considerable amount of dye on their hands, arms, and toes during the event but they removed the plastic gloves and washed well before being photographed for posterity. The red and purple on their arms is hidden by their “panty pose”

Panty Party

Left to right they are Rita Pyatt, Susan McConnell, Anya Tyson, Nancy Cooledge, and Mary Fahsbender. Peggi is hiding behind the camera.

Well done, ladies!

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August 11, 2009 at 6:37 am 9 comments

August “Small Quilt” Auction Ends Tonight

Auction Quilts

Monday, August 10 at 10:01 p.m. EDT the Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative’s “Slow & Silent” on-line auction will be history. Don’t miss a chance to win a beautiful little quilt for you or for a friend as you  help raise money for Alzheimer’s research.

Great quilts! Good deeds! What could be better?!

Bid here:

Please tell all your friends.

Thank you for your help!
Ami :)

August 10, 2009 at 1:46 am Leave a comment

Subversive Stitchers

Today I am guest blogging at Subersive Stitchers. I answered questions about the Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative.


August 4, 2009 at 10:18 am 7 comments

Last Day For the “Two-For-One” Sale

I went a little nuts with a special offer in my newsletter on Saturday. In case you aren’t signed up to get my newsletter, it went something like this. Well, it actually went EXACTLY like this, except without the pictures. And the  few extra thoughts I just added this morning…

How NOT to Make a Prize-Winning Quilt by Ami Simms


I bet that 25% of people who buy How NOT To Make A Prize-Winning Quiltbuy it again a second time. That’s truly an odd statistic, but that’s what people tell me. Lots of people. They originally buy the book for themselves, give it to a friend to read, and never get it back! Of all the quilting books I’ve ever heard of my little acid green tome is the one most often read aloud on bus trips to Paducah. I’m just telling you what an honor that is—both the buying the book two times and the public readings.

How NOT To Make A Prize-Winning Quilt is the only book I’ve written that I periodically re-read. I’m pretty much done with the others as soon as they’re published. I already know “how to” whatever the books were about and I don’t need to read them again. But I do read the little funny book, because it still makes me laugh. I probably shouldn’t admit that, but it’s true. I have even giggled out loud. Pathetic.

My favorite chapter? I think it’s a tie between “If It Doesn’t Fit, Pull On It Or Cut It Off” and “Only Sissies Machine Quilt.”

My favorite photo? The one showing the label from one of the twin size sheets I used for backing that got sandwiched in and quilted. By hand no less. I never noticed it was in there until I started photographing this quilt for the book.  Hey, at least I picked out the hem and the piping!

Since everybody needs a laugh or two, I’ve cooked up a special deal, but you need to act quickly. Until midnight on Monday (August 3rd—that would be TONIGHT!) get TWO copies of How NOT To Make A Prize-Winning Quilt for the price of one. (Notice the built-in “loaner” book you can actually GIVE away from the start?)

I’ll autograph books this time and I’ll inscribe them, too. First names only, please. If you want it dated you have to say so in the comment section because I normally don’t do that. To be very specific about the dating, if the book is inscribed (“For Susie”) and you want it dated you get the day, the month, and the year. If the book is not inscribed and you just want it autographed (that would be just my name) and you want it dated, then you get just the year. Unless you tell me otherwise. (Madison, reading over my shoulder, asked if that meant I go “all the way” on the first date. Everybody’s a comedian.)

Sinking Sailboat by Ami SimmsAND, I’ll give you a free pattern. I’ll email you the pattern for my Sinking Sailboat quilt. You have my permission to print it off so that you and your friend can each make my funniest quilt ever.

But wait, there’s more! (I love saying that.) There’s a little gift I mention in the back of How NOT To Make A Prize-Winning Quilt that you can send away for, except that you have to send in a self-addressed stamped envelope. If you’re one of the first 100 people who order, I’m going to save you the trouble, and the $.44 in postage each way. You AND the recipient of the “extra” book each get the little gift with the book. (You just can’t send away for a second one because there probably won’t be any more!)

Deal? Stop reading  now and go here to ORDER so you don’t miss out! And tell all your friends.

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(By the way, I Twitter too.)

August 3, 2009 at 5:58 am 1 comment

Ami Simms

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