Catherine Whall Smith . . . sees LINES and SHAPES everywhere.

During last week’s storm, one of our large – over 1o0 feet high evergreen tree’s cracked partway down the trunk. Below is one of the sections on the ground. I was so delighted that it just barely missed our garden and it’s surrounding fence.  Though it will change our view from our home and my studio; the shadows reminded me of a recent post on Shapes by artist Pat Pauly. You can check it out here; .

Pat’s post made me start looking around at interesting shapes and lines in our back yard.  Here are some old house shutters that might lead to a few fabric studies in my studio.

Time will tell!

Note: How long does it last – recent studies suggest; the Corona Virus can survive; UP to THREE HOURS on paper; UP to 1 DAY on cardboard: and UP to 3 – 7 DAYS on plastic & stainless steel.

Stay Home and Stay Safe – don’t forget your mask. 

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Catherine Whall Smith . . . . is working on hanging SIX FEET apart!

My previous post on March 27, 2020  showed the beginnings of the two pieces I just completed. Titled “Hay . . . Keep Your Distance”, they are a reminder of our present “Social Distancing”. These two pieces have a ton of hand quilting, which was easy to do as I’ve been spending lots of time watching the CNN updates and admiring Dr. Fauci’s ability to “Stay Calm and Carry On”.  So, I decided to take the current social distance advice and hang them 6 feet apart as a reminder to myself as to what that distance looks like.


Even the birds are turning away from each other

Hmmm, then I also decided to prop up two new mounted pieces in my PARTS series – here they are 6 feet apart on a bench in our front hall. 


Six feet may be further than you think!



So keep your distance and don’t forget that mask!

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Catherine Whall Smith . . . knows it’s all OVER THE WORLD!

Yes, my blog is seen around the world in 113 countries! – I’m sure some of the views are due to my membership in Studio Art Quilt Associates (SAQA) SAQA is an international non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the art quilt and the artists who create them. Founded in 1989 by an initial group of 50 artists, SAQA members now number more than 3,600 artists, teachers, collectors, gallery owners, museum curators and corporate sponsors.

SAQA has a “not to be missed” yearly auction of Fiber Art in a 12H x 12W format. This year’s auction will take place online from September 14 through October 4, 2020. For more information go to    I plan to submit two of my 12 x 12 mounted pieces, though I’m still deciding on which ones. Maybe “Stay the Distance”

Or, “Pink Makes a Come Back”

So Go Bid & Buy Fiber Art!

If you are viewing my website for the first time via my Face book post , why not receive my “sometimes weekly blog” via your email.  Go to and click on the    “Follow Blog via Email” bar on the left side of the page.

Note: With everyone dealing with the Corona virus outbreak, artists of all mediums are in their studios creating their reactions to this pandemic. Whether they continue to create beautiful landscapes, contemporary, or interpretive art, it will reflect their thoughts and feelings.  So what are you doing in your studio?

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Catherine Whall Smith . . . shares the virtual Fiber Art in the Local Color #4 “Rails, Roads, Trails” show.

As previously posted the 2020 SAQACT Local Color Show – “Rails, Roads, Trails” – at the Windsor Art Center scheduled for March 21 – May 2nd, 2020 has been postponed until further notice.

The shows curators: Clara Nartey, Kathy Baglioni, and Maureen Lopez  have put together a list of the 21 Artists. Each name is a hyperlink to the artist’s page with images and statement.   Enjoy the virtual show.

Carol W. Capozzoli

Catherine Whall Smith

Catey LaBonte

Christina Blais

Clara Nartey

Dawn Allen

Diane Lillian Cadrain

Diane M. Wright

Evelyn Oliver Knight

Judy Ross

Kate Themel

Kathleen Bagioni

Laura M. Lugo

Lin J. Elmo

Margaret A. Phillips

Mary Lachman

Maureen Lopes

Meredith Brooks

Phyllis Small

Rita Daley Hannafin

Susan K. Ober

NOTE: This September 2020 – Local Color: “Rails, Roads, Trails” 2020 will travel to the Slater Memorial Museum, Norwich, CT .  Exact dates and information on the Opening Reception will be sent when confirmed.

Time to reflect as we “Stay Safe – Stay Home” during this Holy time of the year.  Growing up in Manchester, New Hampshire, I remember during my grammar school years at Our Lady of Perpetual Help School the need to have the perfect Easter outfit along with the over the top Easter hat. A bonding experience with my mother – we would go downtown to Pariseau’s to select it. One year straw was in, another year it was flowers on a stretchable knit cap. Thinking back several Easter’s before those hat bonding experiences, I can still clearly visualize the details of a dusty pink coat and matching round pocketbook in the shape of a cat’s face – with little ears. The set made by my mother also had hand stitched whiskers, nose, and eyes. That attention to the details has stayed with me.  I have no idea what happened to that wonderful Easter coat and cat purse, but I still remember the fine construction and the stitching of the details – so what do you remember?

Wishing you a Happy Spring, Happy Easter, and Happy Passover!



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Catherine Whall Smith . . . shares her process START to FINISH!


Today, I thought I would share my “improvisational” piecing process using five images;

#1 – The fabric piece with red dots on a white background has been laid on top of the background fabric.

#2 – Next I use the edge of the fabric piece as my guide to cut through the back ground fabric.

#3 – Once  that line is stitched in place I can move onto making decisions regarding the placement of more lines as shown below on my design wall;

#4 –  Another section (shown below) already has some lines so is now ready for another green line. My see through ruler allows me to position it so that I can create the proper placement of the top green line. Once the line is slashed I can then complete this section.

#5  – Pressing is an important part of the process – press each line after it is stitched in place.

Don’t be hesitant to try this “Slash and Stitch” method of creating your Fiber Art.

NOTE: “So do what you think you can’t”- not sure what that means – but it struck  a cord with me. It goes beyond “just do it”.  As an artist start with what you know you can do or master and then move on to create that “do what you can’t ” master piece!


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Catherine Whall Smith . . . is Staying Home Stitching in her Studio and sending the CWA show up-date.

Considering the Chaos (BEFORE)Two of the Results – (AFTER)

These two tops are now being hand quilted. I usually photograph the back of the quilt tops (see below)

This is the last time I will be able to view the machine stitching lines of each top, before I assemble the three layers (see below): back, batting, and top.

Note: UP-DATE :  A Note from the CWA President, Linda Boisvert DeStefanisOur exhibits are invariably a testament to the degree of excellence that our members continue to work towards, and it is always a pleasure to behold the show hung with pride for all to enjoy. Unfortunately, due to the risk of the Corona Virus, the art world, and most of our gatherings has come to a halt. Safety must be the main concern for now, so, in keeping with the call to restrict our social gatherings, we are sending you all a link so that you can view and admire our fabulous, virtual exhibit with 100 pieces of fine art… online. Here is the link for our show: 

When things begin to improve, the Art League of New Britain will stay in touch with us and decisions will be made. A Statement by our Juror… “To be asked to be the juror for the 2020 CWA Annual Members’ Juried Show is both an honor and a challenge. Art in this exhibit reflects and communicates consciousness, feelings, poetry, beauty and diversity. Even though Salvador Dali told artists: “Have no fear of perfection, you’ll never reach it”, the brilliance of art isn’t just what we make but what it makes of us. Humbly we will carry on. You have created an exhibit here that should make every artist proud. Congratulations and applause to all.”  Jean Dalton

“Stay Safe . . . Stay in your Studio” . . .  Smith Stitch Studio

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Catherine Whall Smith . . . was thinking of celebrating “National Quilting Day”

So guess what, along with the many Art shows, Art centers, and Art galleries the National Quilting Day celebration scheduled for Saturday, March 21, 2020 has been cancelled due to concerns about the risk of social gatherings during the corona virus pandemic. But, save the date for next year’s celebration of National Quilting Day on March 20th, 2021. .

Here are some more cancellations of shows that include my art;

2020 – Connecticut Women Artists, Inc. (CWA) Annual Members’ Juried Show April 4 – May 1, 2020 at the Art League of New Britain 30 Cedar Street New Britain, CT. Closed until further notice.

2020 – LOCAL COLOR: RAILS, ROADS & RIVERS – Studio Art Quilt Associates CT Regional Exhibition First venue Windsor Art Center, Windsor, CT – March 21 – April 25​​.  The Art Center will be closed from March 16 through March 23, at which time a new update will be issued.

2020 – Mystic Museum of Art (MMoA), Mystic, Connecticut “Six by Six” Six Elected Artists Invitational Show and Sale of Art. February 2nd – April 4th, Schuster Gallery (MM0A).  MMoA has been closed until future notice.

2020 – “Thread Count” – January 11th – March 31st, 2020. The Hartford Art and Framing Gallery Closed through the end of March at which time they will reassess the situation. 

2020 – Art Party of the Year @ The New Britain Museum of Art- UPDATE: After much consideration, the Art Party of the Year and art auction on April 25, 2020 has been postponed. This even will be rescheduled following the conclusion of the COVID-19 virus concerns. “Gold Hay #5” and “How did this Happen” will be included in this postponed auction.

Finally a NOTE TO SELF! “When did quilts /fiber art become a “Do Not Touch Item?”. Because all my fiber art is Hand quilted – I do a lot of touching! In fact that is one of the things I like best about my creative process. My Artist Statement includes that idea; “My final connection with each piece is hand stitching repetitive lines across the quilts surface.   Thousands of tiny stitches allow me to once again be in the moment as three layers merge into one and my art transforms from a flat surface to one with texture, drape, and dimension”.  So for future shows, I will try to include a piece or sample of work that you can touch and examine. Go ahead – touch it, examine the back, check out the seams, and the hand stitching.  How does it feel to you?

Finally, “Stay Safe . . . Stay in your Studio”  from Smith Stitch Studio

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Catherine Whall Smith now has time to purge and organize her computer . . . guess what she found!

  Advice from a Singer Sewing Machine Manual  From 1949

“Prepare yourself mentally for sewing. Think about what you are going to do . . . Never approach sewing with a sign or lackadaisically. Good results are difficult when indifference predominates.

Never try to sew with a sink full of dirty dishes or beds unmade. When there are urgent housekeeping shores, do these first so your mind is free to enjoy your sewing. When you sew make yourself as attractive as possible. Put on a clean dress. Keep a little bag full of French chalk near your sewing machine to dust your fingers at intervals. Have your hair in order, powder and lipstick put on. If you are constantly fearful that a visitor will drop in or your husband will come home, and you will not look nearly put together, you will not enjoy your sewing.”

Seventy plus years later things have changed for sure.  I no longer dust my fingers with french chalk!  So what are you up to?

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Catherine Whall Smith . . . suggests two “Save the Dates”

#1 – Up Date on “Thread Count”* Gallery talk by Clara Nartey.  Thursday, March 12th, 5:30 – 6:30 Clara Nartey will be giving a lecture titled, “A Brand New You”: How to Effectively Create Your Personal Artist Brand Online.

*From January 11th – March 31st, 2020 Hartford Fine Art and Framing, has filled their gallery with color, warmth and life! “Thread Count” includes  beautiful fiber, quilting and felting artwork of five extremely talented artists: Judy Ross, Kate Themel, Diane Cadrain, Clara Nartey, and Catherine Whall Smith. All of the pieces hanging on display would make a wonderful addition to any art collection, so stop in between now and March 31st to see what’s hanging!  Featuring:  Clara Nartey  :Diane Cadrain :Catherine Whall Smith   :Judy Ross :Kate Themel

#2 – Since NATIONAL QUILTING DAY is Saturday, March 21st, why not see some quilts at the OPENING RECEPTION of “Local Color: Rails, Roads & Rivers” celebrating the range of metaphors evoked by human-built and nature-carved modes of movement and transportation and the people who build and/or use them. The Studio Art Quilt Associates CT Regional Exhibition will be on view at Windsor Art Center, Windsor, CT – March 21 – April 25​​. Opening Reception: March 21​st 5pm – 7pm.

“Sanctuary in the City” (30H x 40W) by Rita Hannafin.AllRightsReserved

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Catherine Whall Smith . . . thinks it’s time to move and don’t forget Saturday’s demo by Kate Themel

Time to move to another color palette.  Red, red, and more RED, that color in a variety of prints has dominated my work in my “Transfusion” series for quite awhile.  But as you can see below, there are some new colors emerging.  Beautiful Pat Pauly ( and Carol Eaton  ( hand dyes as well as commercial prints in golds and greens.  My design wall is now full of fabric ideas.  I’ve added some of my photo images of hay bales, some covered in white plastic and interesting images of a corn crib door and farm equipment.  Time to let that “perk” until I am ready to start creating and stitching the next piece.

  Reminder:  The next “Thread Count” lecture at the Hartford Fine Art and Framing Gallery will be Saturday, February 29th, 11 am – 1 pm.  Kate Themel will be demonstrating her sewing machine techniques, using a camera and projector for all to watch as she works.  A not to be missed event.

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