Please join me in welcoming a Guest Blogger to the Quilting Gallery. If you’re interested in being a Guest Blogger, please read the info on the submit page then drop me an email.

By: Margaret Bucklew

An epiphany happened to me about twenty years ago. There was a void in my life and I didn’t even know it was happening.

I think an inspiration is like a flash of light in your psyche just waiting for action, and I needed one.

On the wall in a fabric store hung a stunning Oregon Trail Jacket. I bought the pattern and soon realized, even though I had no quilting experience, it had to be very similar to making a quilt. There was piecing, thin batting, matching seams and so on. Whatever it was called, I was hooked.


Wearing the jacket was always a fun experience because strangers would stop me and ask about what I was wearing; there were always questions and compliments.

The jacket still looks as good as it did the day I completed it; wish I could say the same for myself.


First, I would only wear it on nice days. Second, I wore it into a shop and the lady was so enthralled with the jacket she couldn’t contain herself. She asked just about every question she could think of; how was it made, how much it cost to make, where I found the pattern and on and on. I finally completed the sale and was about the leave when she said, “Wait, Wait, I want Dorothy to come out and see your jacket, she just loves gaudy things like I do!”

The jacket was just the inspiration I needed to steer me into the quilting realm. I went on to make traditional quilts for each of my children and grandchildren; however, I soon branched out into portrait quilts. I find creating a realistic likeness of a loved one in patterned fabric to be very exciting and rewarding.

I create my own portrait/pictorial quilt patterns and the technique I use to complete the quilt is to simply zig zag the edges of each piece of fabric in a slightly non-traditional appliqué method.

After years of presenting lectures and workshops to guilds and being asked how I make the patterns, I developed an online class to help quilters enjoy the process. It really is quite easy and lots of fun to make patterns from favorite photos. Purchasing an appliqué pattern is nice, but creating your own is awesome! All you need is a computer, software (free software is available) and a photo. My next online class to learn how to make the patterns begins September 5, 2009.

I recently retired from my faculty position as coordinator of the graphic communication program at a college and I’m now spending my retirement enjoying the quilting world more fully. I design pantos and continuous line stitching patterns for blocks, appliqué patterns, kits, teach online classes, and share the “how to” of portrait and pictorial quilting to guilds through lectures and workshops.

My quilts, patterns, presentations, and information about online classes are available on my web site and blog.



Are you interesting in trying the non-traditional method of appliqué, which I call “appliquilt” using one of my kits? Enter to win a Riley kit, complete with fabric for the top and binding. Finished size is 13.5″ x 16″.

It’s as easy as leaving a comment below! It’s your chance to win! One random winner will be chosen next Thursday, July 9th.

UPDATE: This contest is now closed. Congratulations to #2 Betsy Lynn for winning Margaret’s Riley appliquilt kit.

Margaret Bucklew
Tagged on:     

23 thoughts on “Margaret Bucklew

  • July 2, 2009 at 10:31 pm

    I would love to learn a new applique technique.

  • July 2, 2009 at 11:03 pm

    Wow, what at great blog, you’re very interesting Margaret!

  • July 2, 2009 at 11:56 pm

    I have often thought there must be a way to make a portrait using fabric, now I know there is. I would love to win this giveaway. Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to enter.
    .-= Carol R’s latest post: Recent Project =-.

  • July 3, 2009 at 2:23 am

    I’d love to lean a new way to applique. And I love cats.

  • July 3, 2009 at 6:31 am

    What a lovely little quilt, and a new technique to learn!! Thanks so much for sharing your story and for giving us a chance to win.

  • July 3, 2009 at 8:19 am


  • July 3, 2009 at 10:43 am

    I would love to learn your method and hope that I am the lucky winner…thanks so much for the chance to win. Your jacket is awesome!

    Mary Jo in Iowa

  • July 3, 2009 at 2:49 pm

    I would love to learn the new applique technique! Please enter me:)

  • July 3, 2009 at 8:37 pm

    Could you add me to the draw? I just came across your blog through Pink Panda and I’m so glad I did!

  • July 4, 2009 at 3:15 am

    What fun – to learn a new technique while creating such an adorable little quilt. Feel free to draw my name for the kit, I promise I’ll give it a good home!! :-)
    .-= Tracy in SW WA’s latest post: A Delicious Bunny =-.

  • July 4, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    that jacket is gorgeous! WOW! :)

  • July 4, 2009 at 2:36 pm

    The jacket is great and very pretty. Please enter me in the drawing for the kit.
    .-= Holly’s latest post: Popcicle Time =-.

  • July 5, 2009 at 11:42 am

    Thank you for your blog post! What a wonderful creative journey you’ve taken. I haven’t tried applique yet, I’m a new quilter and haven’t progressed to that yet but I would love to try!
    .-= Vivian’s latest post: Sydnee’s Roses =-.

  • July 5, 2009 at 9:20 pm

    Way too cool, Margaret! I foster kittens for a no kill organization and would love to win the Riley kit!

  • July 7, 2009 at 10:01 pm

    Okay, now that I was directed to the proper comment box… The words “non-traditional” and “Applique” in the same phrase has me interested. Sounds like a cool project.

  • July 8, 2009 at 7:58 pm

    I love the idea of art meeting applique. I’m an artist and a quilter and have always tried to figure out how to do this, with no luck, ’til now. I’d love to win!

    Tessa Lund

  • July 8, 2009 at 10:51 pm

    I really like the idea of a new way to applique’..Please add me to your very long list..thanks


  • July 9, 2009 at 9:33 am

    I love applique, and I’m always looking for new and easier ways. Thanks for a fun giveaway.

Comments are closed.