Two Compass Journeys

I’ve had two students do some pretty terrific things with my Mariner’s Compass technique recently. I hope you enjoy the quilts and the stories.

Story #1

I’ve known fiber artist, Mary Alice Hart, for awhile and am pleased to call her my friend. I was delighted to find she had signed up for my class when I taught for her guild. A short while after the class she sent me this note with pictures:

“Chris, Thought you might like to see the end result of the Compass I started in your class last October in Monroe. Knew it had to have a life beyond tradition so threw it into space. Thanks for a great class!
Mary Alice”

Not only was her quilt incredibly innovative, but so was the label:

Mary Alice did a wonderful lecture for my guild last year. To learn more about her and her quilts,

go to:

Story #2

Debbie Hawver took my Mariner’s class at WCTC  in 2016. She is a regular in my Open Labs, and brought it to class with four additional compass portions added in the corners.

She then decided to turn it on point with white and gold fabrics in the new corners. The problem was, the quilt top wasn’t square and the gold triangles she added were not matching up. We noodled on ways to fix it. The best way was to take it apart and redo the corners – a lot of work. This is an email she sent me that week:

“Well…As I mulled over the Mariner, yesterday I decided to take it apart.  Took off the 4 corners, squared up the main block and needed to create 2 new corners that had perfect right angles.   After attaching those, re-cut gold triangles and replaced the white border with new fabric that was wider (definitely now had more “wiggle room”).  Started at 2PM and the dog finally came in at 10:30PM wondering why we weren’t in bed yet 🙂

This afternoon I finished squaring it all up and I’m much happier with it.  Even though I’m at the same place I was last Thursday, I feel a lot better with the way it looks and the next step is to add the final border and binding.”

The following week she came to class with it redone. And it was done well!!!

Next we brainstormed borders and finishing. These she pursued, but with quite a bit of ripping and frustration along the way. The quilt wasn’t cooperating, but Debbie was so determined, and the final result is stunning.

Debbie's Mariners Compass

It’s one of the loveliest compass quilts I’ve seen. I really learned a lesson in perseverance from Debbie. Sometimes it is worth the extra effort to get it right. Great work Debbie!

Thank you Mary Alice and Debbie for sharing you delightful quilts with us!!!


And here’s a special FYI – I’ll be teaching at:

Spring University Days Wisconsin Museum of Quilts and Fiber Arts

You’ll find all the details in their lovely 2 page brochure. Click here for a printable pdf of page 1. Click here for page 2. Or visit their website: 

Sign up quick – it’s a wonderful event!

3 Opinions

  • Alice Brooks said:

    Both are just gorgeous! I love the compass projects so much. You are a true inspiration Chris!

  • Laurie Neubuaer said:

    What a beautiful quilt and the colors are gorgeous. You are an excellent quilter and I enjoy your work. Hopefully I can get back into open labs after my surgery in April and see all your creations. Thanks Chris for sharing your insight and knowledge…Laurie

  • Mary Miller said:

    Both are wonderful in such unique ways.


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