I can’t tell you how happy it makes me to see everyone using my kaleidoscope blocks in their EQ quilts. It makes my heart flutter when I see your photos come in. I received the sweetest email from Janice Wall in New Zealand. She and her friends did the kaleidoscope mystery quilt lessons together.

Janice writes:

Hi Andrea,
What a wonderful kaleidoscope quilt that you designed, and what fun we had doing it. After buying the CD just before Christmas, I signed up for your kaleidoscope newsletters. When you started your mystery quilt, I contacted a few friends who were just as excited as me, and we decided to do it. At first we were going to have show and tell each time we met, but then decided that it would not work since you kept saying ‘no peeking’. Each time we met, we would try and guess at what the finished quilt would be like, and how you would put our wedges together.

Finally we were all ready for the unveiling, so decided to each bring a plate and have a party. We all bought our wedges out, took turns laying them down on the floor and taking photos. It was so much fun seeing the different colours and designs that each had chosen. One friend had done each block in one colour scheme (eg different shades of green, and another in different shades of brown, etc) Another friend had done the mirror image blocks in different colours. We had all had such different ideas.

While I made coffee and we put out all the goodies to eat, my husband brought out the printed sheets of the unveiling (he had been hiding them from me for over a month) I’ve got to say that we were all just blown away with your layout. We couldn’t wait to start laying out our own wedges. The other ladies said that we should start on mine as it could stay on the floor, and they would wait til they got home before laying theirs out. We had a ball playing with my wedges and changing them around. It was amazing how a small change could make such a difference.

However it didn’t take long, before each of the other ladies were laying out their own wedges and having a marvelous time playing with their own layouts. Each one was so different and yet so beautiful. The time just flew by.

My layout stayed on the lounge floor for the next few weeks, while I sewed it together. It went together so well (I had been worried about whether or not it would sit flat) I must say that both my husband and myself were glad to see it finally in one piece. Everyone I have shown it too just loves it. They find they just keep staring at it seeing more and more things to look at. Your eye just keeps wanting to follow out in different directions.

This has to be one of the most fun projects that I have ever done, and doing it with friends made it even more fun. We all agreed that if we had seen the final layout, we probably would have been too intimidated to even attempt it. And if we hadn’t had each other sharing the journey with us, we probably wouldn’t have got this far. We were often on the phone to each other asking how each other was getting on, and sharing problems if one was a little unsure about something. BUT we all agreed that we have enjoyed doing it so much, and are so glad that we did it. Thank you so much.

I have attached a photo of my original 9 blocks as well as my quilt. I have also attached a picture of Liz’s quilt. The others have not sewn their large wedges together yet, but all are very close to where we are.

I’m now trying to choose a border. I’ve got lots of ideas and am filling EQ6 with these ideas. I realize how little I know about EQ6, but am learning as I go. What a fantastic program it is. I have just bought 2 more CD’s, the Folk Art and the 1920′s and 1930′s, and can’t wait to play with these. (Thanks to Penny for telling us how to install them onto EQ6, so easy when you know how) In the meantime I thought I might do the ‘Mystery of the missing quilt’. So much to do, so little time and here I am retired and living in a lovely small beach town in the Bay of Plenty, New Zealand, and having the best time of my life.

Once again thank you so very much for all the hard work that you must have put into designing the kaleidoscope CD and then putting together the mystery quilt.

As a consequence of this exercise one of my friends has bought EQ6 and another friend plans to buy it in the near future.

I can’t wait to see what you come up with in the future, but in the meantime there is sure plenty to go on with.

Needless to say I was effervescing with praise for her and her friends. What an adventure it must have been doing the Mystery together. I love the fact that they gave the honor of the reveal to Janice’s husband, who had hidden the layout from them for months.

Bravo! I can’t wait to see them when they’re finished! Please, please, please send more pictures! I am blown away by your work.

Janice wrote me later to say: “I’ll keep in touch regarding our progress. We are all anxious to finish it. At the moment mine is on my design wall until I’m ready to add the borders. Everyone who comes to visit gets dragged into my sewing room to see it, and they all just love it. No one has ever seen anything like it.