Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Mother Superior's Blog Has Moved

We are excited to announce that Mother Superior's Blog has moved to a new location. Our new address is

Please update your bookmarks and/or RSS feeds.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Texture Magic Tuesday/ Heirloom Baby Ensemble

Make an heirloom outfit for a special baby in your life using today’s modern techniques.
Achieve the look of hand smocking in a fraction of the time by using Texture Magic™!

Heirloom Baby Ensemble by Annie Unrein
Pattern includes complete, step-by-step instructions for texturizing fabric as well as assembling gown with self-lined bodice and border trim, bonnet, and slippers.

Sized to fit infants, newborn to six months.

Beaded lace trims, beads, and ribbons make beautiful, but easy embellishments

Texture Magic works well with all fabrics, including silk.
All three pieces can be made using 1 yard package of Texture Magic.

Your precious little one will look like an angel in this beautiful gown, bonnet, and slippers.
Heirloom Baby Ensemble can be ordered on our web site.

Monday, April 5, 2010

The Longarms are In!

In preparation for the School of Threadology, several of our longarm machines are now in.

We now have 5 machines that have been set up, with more on the way.

Come and play with us! Imagine a class where you can use all of our Superior Threads and try many of the major brands of midarms and longarms on the market today.

Our staff has been in training on the use of the longarms.
The men, too.

Even Bob has given each machine a try.

Make sure to check the calendar on our website for upcoming classes.
All school sessions will also be announced in Bob's newsletter.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Kinkakuji Quilt

The most famous Buddhist temple in Japan is located near one of our thread factories in Kyoto. It is called Kinkakuji which means the Golden Pavilion. The temple is situated in a small lake and the building is gold plated. When the sun hits it, the building lights up -- it glows! It is quite the site to see!
While attending the quilt show in Paducah a few years ago, we stayed at a bed and breakfast and happened to meet Trina Weller, a fellow guest who was working on some beautiful quilts.
Bob had always wanted a pictorial quilt of Kinkakuji to remind us of our 10 years in Japan and we asked Trina if she would make a quilt of this beautiful temple. She said, "Sure!"
Her friend Leona Law did the design and painting and Trina did the construction and quilting. Trina used so many different applique techniques in this quilt that I can't name them all. It is a masterpiece!
Threads Used: Metallics, Highlights, and Bottom Line. The border has Rainbows and Nature Colors.
Our Kinkakuji Quilt now hangs in an honored place in our Japanese Room.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Texture Magic Tuesday/ Handmade Cards

We are always looking for new ways to use Texture Magic.
Our appreciation today goes to Margaret Miller of St. George, Utah for sharing with us a handmade card she received that incorporated Texture Magic.

This was Pat Rimpau and Maggie Nicholes' way of saying "thank you" to Margaret who had taught them how to use Texture Magic in a purse class.
The fabric card was designed and created by Carolyn Chuatiuco, a member of the Dixie Quilt Guild.

The texturized fabric has been framed for the front of the card. A simple and yet unique process that can be applied to cards and even scrapbook pages.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Bowing To Bob

Now that we have an authentic Japanese room in our new building addition, Bob, who spent 10 years in Japan, kindly gave the women of our office a lesson in properly bowing.

In authentic style, we must first take our shoes off at the door and neatly line them up. No shows on the tatami (straw mats). Sometimes you can go home with a better pair of shoes!

Pat, our office manager answers the door most humbly when Bob knocks. Nice form, Pat! Head down, hands together. "Please enter, most honorable master."

He enters to make sure all is well. "Hey, do like Pat!"

Much better.
And the instruction of how to bow correctly begins (and seems to go on way too long). "Most honorable master, may we humbly get up now? My legs are hurting."
OK, we think he is enjoying this too much!

More instruction on beautiful artwork.

More bowing, when there is another knock at the door!
Superior Baby Avilyn is most curious to know where all the laughter is coming from.

We tried to teach her she must bow too, but she won't have anything to do with it.

She would rather stick with American customs and jumped into Grandpa's arms.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Japanese Room Now Finished

Having lived in Japan for 10 years, we desired to create a Japanese Room when we added the new addition to our building.
The name of this room is "Kaizen no ma" which means the space of continual improvement.

This room has been designed as a place of study and for meetings. We also frequently use this room to study Japanese. Bob is the 'sensei'.

Our employees may use this room to brainstorm new ideas or to contemplate.

The furnishings may look plain or unfinished to some, but this room design is authentic. The mats are made out of straw. The room is designed to bring nature inside. It is very simple, yet beautiful.

An area to display art.

A quilt that features one of the most famous temples in Japan, Kinkakuji, hangs in the alcove. There will be more on this quilt in a future blog.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Texture Magic Tuesday/ All Occasion Baskets

With Easter around the corner, now is a good time to think of decorating with baskets.
We have a wonderful idea, made especially with Texture Magic.
Spring-time fabrics make a basket perfect for Easter egg hunts or a spring table centerpiece.

The All Occasion Baskets by Annie Unrein are offered in two versions.

Version 1 has a texturized inset strip bordered with optional rick rack trim.
Version 2 has a texturized body and optional rick rack trim spanning the plain inset strip.

Pick a fabric appropriate for the recipient and make baskets to use as gift baskets for any occasion through the year.
I can think of a few sewing friends who would love a basket full of Superior Threads.
All Occasion Baskets can be ordered on our web site.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Bali Hai

Congratulations to Marilyn Badger of St. George, Utah for winning Best Large Quilt at Road To California 2010.
"Bali Hai" (94" X 94") was made and quilted by Marilyn.

In her artist statement, Marilyn shared the back ground for Bali Hai:
"Blocks were paper pieced using silks and cottons, then the entire center and all four corners were pieced together, piped and appliqu├ęd to the background fabric. I then quilted 10,000 yards of metallic thread in a style I call overlay quilting. That is, the stitching provides another separate dimension to the quilt so that the quilting stands on its own."

Marilyn used all Superior Threads in the construction of her quilt.

"I made the quilt to showcase working with guides and tools on the longarm and recently featured this quilt and Filigree on my taping of Love of Quilting with Fons & Porter which is airing now. It is a Claudia Myers design." Marilyn said.

Bali Hai has currently been honored with 5 awards:

1st Place Innovative Template and Viewer's Choice at MQX
1st Place Tools of the Trade at MQS
Best Artistry in Longarm Workmanship at Quilt Odyssey
Best Longarm Workmanship at AQS Des Moines
Best Large Quilt at Road to California

Friday, March 19, 2010

Birds and Roses

Hand quilting is almost a forgotten art. Today we honor Pat Peters of St. George, Utah for winning 2nd place for Traditional, Large, Applique at Road To California 2010.
"Birds and Roses" (85" X 85")
All the applique and quilting have been done by hand.

Birds and Roses is from a book by Margaret Docherty of London, England.
There are 21 pieces in each rose.
"It took me 2 years to finish it, and I worked on it every day for about 4 or 5 hours. I enjoy the whole aspect of making a quilt, no matter how long it takes!!! By the time I am finished with it, I am ready to be finished!! It is done completely in batiks, and the shading of the roses was easier using the batiks. I wanted it to look like an English garden." Pat shared.

Pat used all Superior threads: Bottom Line for applique, and Treasure for hand quilting. "I loved the Bottom Line, because it completely, well almost completely disappears in the fabric." Pat said.
Congratulations Pat!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Texture Magic Tuesday/ Journal Cover

Bridget Wideman has been using her creativity, and shared with us a few things she has learned as she works with Texture Magic.
1. The next time you make a purse or tote bag, try texturizing your main fabric. I made a small purse and the just the flap is textured and it adds a bit of pizazz.
2. Before any project using Texture Magic, make a few samples first. A 1" straight stitch grid gives you a puffy appearance, whereas small free-motion stippling give a very crinkled appearance. I have samples of my four favorite "looks", depending on what I plan on doing.
3. Instead of using fusible web to attach your Texture Magic fabric pieces, try good old Elmer's Glue. First I tried using a variety of specialty glues make for attaching embellishments, but Elmer's holds better, is quick to dry and dries clear.

Bridget recently made a journal cover using Texture Magic and Superior Threads.
"I took a few 8x8 squares of Fairy Frost with the Texture Magic on the back and I did some really dense free-motion stitching on a few of them (the blue and yellow). I also used a serpentine stitch to make a grid pattern with the squares being about 1/2" or so on the bright pink fabric. It's neat how you can have a really puffy piece or a really crinkly piece depending on your stitching.
On the quilted fabric cover I used Superior Thread, of course! Brytes #1132"

Thank you for sharing your ideas with us Bridget!
We would love to see how you are using Texture Magic in your projects. Please send pictures and a short description to

Monday, March 15, 2010

Avilyn Helps Pull Orders

Our grand daughter Avilyn may only be a year old, but she already loves our training program with Bob.
We figure it's time she learns the business. Pulling orders was her first assignment.

We hope her first word is "thread".
No, it should be Grandma.

Or maybe "grandpa". That would be OK, too.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Working With Metallic Thread

Do you know that Superior Metallics was our first product line?

By using these few simple rules, you can enjoy working with Metallics:
1. Needle: Topstitch or Metallic #90/14 (home machines)
2. Top tension: loosen to a "1" on home machines
3. If a spool, position the spool on the vertical pin holder in such a way that the thread unwinds directly from the side of the spool with the spool rotating. The thread should not unwind over the end or top of a spool.
4. If a cone, thread must unwind straight up over the top of the cone.
5. Bottom thread (bobbin): any smooth polyester.
The Bottom Line is best.

•A strong, durable, beautiful 40 wt. thread. Available in 25 colors.
•Ideal for embroidery, quilting, applique, and decorative serging
•The only metallic thread that is guaranteed to work.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Texture Magic Tuesday/ Fat Quarter Bags

Our thanks today goes to Bridget Wideman, for sharing with us her purse made with Texture Magic. Bridget's inspiration came from M'Liss Rae Hawley's book titled "101 Fabulous Fat Quarter Bags".

Bridget altered the pattern slightly and used Texture Magic on the flap. She shared with us her experience in using Texture Magic:
"Thanks for coming up with such a neat product! I make quilts for the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative and I can't wait to use it in one of my quilts!"
Bridget Wideman (QuilterBridget)

*We love seeing your projects made with Texture Magic. Please send photo's and a short description to

Monday, March 8, 2010

Tuscan Sun

Tuscan Sun by Gina Perkes of Payson, Arizona. Gina was honored with The Future of Quilting Award at the International Quilt Festival in Houston last October.
Gina hand dyed 100 yards of fabric for this project, working to get just the right colors she was looking for.

We have known Gina for many years and admire her beautiful work. Congratulations Gina!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Adam and The S.T.E.P. Program

A year ago, on our 3/16/09 post, we shared with you the S.T.E.P. program for our employees.
S.T.E.P (Superior Threads Educational Program) is optional, and provides incentives for our staff to read books that will increase their knowledge in business and customer service.
We pay them $20 for each book completed, with an accompanied 1 page report. (Yes, you read that right).

Adam Fisher, who works in our warehouse, is the current leader in number of books read. In the last 10 months, Adam has read around 37 books. This has been a great way to supplement his income as he is married, going to school, and expecting his first baby any day.

Adam feels that he has learned many things in reading this last year. "I have definitely become more business savy." he said. "I've learned ideas of how to be unique in the business field, and how to stay ahead of the game. I've learned the steps a person can take if they choose to start up their own company. And I've learned many values and ethics in the work place."
This is just a few of the many pages employees have used as they check out books from our work library.

Adam said his favorite book read so far is "Who Moved My Cheese?".
Originally, Adam participated in the S.T.E.P program because of the extra income. Now, with all that he has learned, the motivation has shifted.
Adam likes caring for spiders as a hobby. I have seen them and even touched them. Tarantulas to be exact. He would like to start his own business raising Tarantulas and selling them. Any customers?