Four points of lifestyle interest from around the world of quilt making delivered straight to your inbox every Friday. Think of them as your weekly helping of things to make you smile.

Happy Friday!

Today’s Friday 4 Points are from Debra Gabel, Creative Director for Row by Row and now Quilters Trek. Debra and her husband Gary own Zebra Patterns where she designs the popular favorite FabricPlates and so much more. Debra has three grown sons and lives in eastern North Carolina.


One of the best things about being Creative Director for Quilters Trek is designing the collectible souvenir fabric. It’s fun, exciting, and scary! We work more than a year ahead and decisions have to be made so far in advance. It’s crazy! Here’s one of my ‘working files.’ It contains the QTrek design elements I created in Adobe Illustrator. You get an idea of how they appear on the final blue fabric. Words on fabric are so popular. But it takes extra nights of staying up late to get them just right so you can use them effortlessly in any project. I hope you like them!

Feed your family and get your sewing done! 

This is the time of the year I start cooking red beans and rice. I’m not one for following recipes. I’m a dumper! I start by browning diced onions along with 2 – 12 oz. pkgs. of breakfast sausage in a stew pot. Dump in a large can of dark kidney beans, drained. Add 2 cans of diced stewed tomatoes. Maybe some chopped celery or peppers. Add chopped garlic and Tony Chachere’s creole seasoning, salt, pepper. Mix and cook on the stovetop for 20 minutes or so. While that’s cooking, I’ll make white rice from scratch and chop some fresh scallions. I get a bowl, add some rice and top it with the red beans, add a dollop of sour cream and finish with the scallions. Perfect cold-weather meal for several days. It freezes well and it’s yummy!

Are you thinking about downsizing your home?
This summer, we moved from 3 acres and 6 bedrooms in Maryland to 3 small bedrooms and a postage stamp of land in Leland, North Carolina near Wilmington. Downsizing a large home and a business is not for sissies! All I can say is if you have any ideas about moving… sell it all!… and start over! I have never made so many decisions in my life!

The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz is one of my all-time favorite books. It’s a short book of ancient wisdom which I try to live by. The lessons are simple in concept but challenging to implement. I gave it to each of my sons and close friends. I try to reread or listen to it often. It’s a great gift idea for hard-to-buy-for football fans in your family. Patriots’ quarterback Tom Brady is a Four Agreements follower.

Bonus Point

Each Friday in December you can download free stitchery patterns for these redwork-style Victorian homes with all their iconic gingerbread trim.

Week One includes House #1 and the 71″ x 88″ finishing pattern for the Hometown Gingerbread quilt.

Quilters Trek received special permission to offer this pattern free to our subscribers in honor of the fine quiltmaker who stitched these lovely houses.
It was originally published under the title Hometown Ladies.

Download House #1 Pattern here.
Download the Hometown Gingerbread Quilt Finishing Pattern here.

Wishing you a Christmas that’s merry and bright!

Enjoy your weekend!

Your Friday 4 Points host is Janet Lutz, creator of Quilters Trek and founder of Row by Row Experience. Her shop, Calico Gals, is a fun destination for quilting fans in upstate New York.

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