by Emma Thomas-McGinnis, artist & quilter

I love Birthdays!

September 4th, 2008 | Posted by Emma | (0 Comments)

It’s a very special day today, my husband’s birthday!! I’ve been working like crazy on a quilt for him…that I can’t reveal yet, in case he’s reading this. (Happy Birthday, Dear!)

And yesterday I was working on a birthday party invitation that I’d like to share. It’s for a three year old girl! I had so much fun finding cute little monkeys and then creating a swirly pink jungle for them to swing around in! Graphic designer play time!!

front: back:


August 25th, 2008 | Posted by Emma | (0 Comments)
Go to to see this one for sale!

Go to to see this one for sale!

I got out paintsticks again. These were a gift from my mom for my birthday! The next two photos are going to be put together into an art quilt.

And here is another paintstick painted and pieced top. The borders are from a single piece of Japanese fabric my mom gave me quite some time ago. I had saved it for something really special and I think this was a good choice!

Inspiration: Mom’s Garden

August 11th, 2008 | Posted by Emma | (0 Comments)

We visited our families last weekend in one sweeping trip through Minnesota. I didn’t get to spend much time there, but I always love to see my mom’s garden. Here are some highlights:

Credit: This is the garden of Ginny Thomas, Sauk Centre, MN

Bachelor’s Buttons Art Quilt

August 10th, 2008 | Posted by Emma | (0 Comments)

My garden grew the best batch of bachelor’s buttons this year! They grew from seeds, that I neglected to thin as seedlings. But the sight was gorgeous. I had to thin them as tall plants that were taking over. Here’s a little art quilt I made while the trimmings were in a vase on my table inspriring me.


August 6th, 2008 | Posted by Emma | (0 Comments)

Another classic moment of my son interacting with my quilts!

If you like this one, go back to this post!

You’re supposed to eat these things?

August 6th, 2008 | Posted by Emma | (0 Comments)

Here is a fun art project I did with my boys. My youngest really helped me! He placed the beans in my puddles of glue and loved doing it! He also examined the beans carefully before throwing them in. It was cute. I did, of course, have to stop from trying to eat them a couple times. But he’s such a picky eater, I’m sure he would have spit them right out!

Beans glued on to a canvas art board, as seen in the book “Crafty U” by Rosie O’Donnell, an awesome kid art book!!

Thistle Quilt

July 29th, 2008 | Posted by Emma | (0 Comments)

As promised, I’m sharing my completed thistle quilt. This was really just a practice piece to learn the paintstick technique, but that didn’t stop me from making it into a pretty quilt! I entered this in the Des Moines Area Quilter’s Guild Show in October.

See my March 2008 post for more details about the paint technique and design inspiration.

Inspiration: Living History Farms

July 7th, 2008 | Posted by Emma | (0 Comments)

My studio is back up and I’ve been creating!! Before I get out my camera and show you what I’ve been up to, I’d really like to start a new thread. I’d like to share my photography with you…not just photos of my other art. I’ve seen this done in another blog and really loved the inspiration!! (Thanks

My inspiration this week has been the Living History Farms in our town. The way people lived in the 1860′s – early 1900′s…life was hard. Some of it seems so romantic, elegant and simple…but then…life was hard!

Under Construction

May 28th, 2008 | Posted by Emma | (0 Comments)

Not the website…but the art studio!! I haven’t been able to do anything in days because my studio is in boxes in the basement and the ceiling is torn apart. I’m trying not to complain too much, because it was just a little roof leak. It could have been much worse with the storms that hit other cities…but I cannot wait to get my favorite room of the house back in order.

Wish me luck with the roof repairs! Thanks!

Creative Postcard Club

May 2nd, 2008 | Posted by Emma | (0 Comments)

The Creative Postcard Club is “a group of professional designers, illustrators, design students and creatives alike from around the world who enjoy corresponding through our own postcard creations.” I have participated in many “rounds” of creating a postcard based on an assignment. Here’s the latest.

The assignment was to design a magazine cover. We were given a choice of three titles, but that was it. The rest of the content was up to the participants. If you’d like to see what the other members come up with, they’ll be posted later in May. (See the link in the blogroll.)

If you’re a graphic designer, be sure to check it out. It’s a really fun way to keep those creative juices flowing! Us quilters and craftspeople know that we hone our skills through practice, but I seldom think about doing that for my job. But really I should! Practice and self-made challenges are great ways to learn new skills, push boundaries and play in new directions…things that aren’t always possible in the parameters of the day-to-day business projects. That’s my two-cents…go out and challenge yourself!!