Gillian Welch’s voice is stuck in my head.

“Oh me oh my oh, look at Miss Ohio
She’s a running around with her rag-top down
She says I wanna do right but not right now.”

It’s a lovely problem to have – having Gillian Welch’s voice stuck in your head.*   And when given a loose context, it’s an inspiring song.  Think, “I wanna do the laundry but not right now.”  Or insert whatever it is you should be doing at any given moment.

Ohio Block 1

For me, today, it was cleaning the bathrooms, and instead of doing what I should have been doing, I sewed up my last 14″ x 14″ improv block for what I’m calling the Ohio Project.

Ohio Block 2

A friend has asked me to make a wedding present for one of her Ohio-loving family members.  I’m impressed with the love for Ohio that my friend, and apparently her brother, share.  I have none myself, but I do love Gillian Welch.  Surely that’s good enough.

Ohio Block 3

My plan is to give her these three options and let her pick which she’d like to have appliquéd into a wall hanging. I used a little Photoshop to help her visualize how much of each block might be excluded by a template of the state of Ohio. I also put a little heart on Cincinnati in case she wanted to gauge how she’d like that as a marker on the final product.


I suppose there’s a danger in using something like Photoshop at this stage when working with a client or a friend – there’s the chance you’ll raise expectations to an unreasonable level. I hope to come close, but I probably won’t be able to appliqué that level of detail. I’m willing to take the chance though. I think if there’s a fabric in there that she hates or loves, I want her to have a good feel of how much it might show up in a final product.

At the moment, I’m not sure if I’ll appliqué onto a solid or something very low volume, but I’ll try a few options.  Any suggestions?


*Please do me a favor, if you search the internet to hear Miss Ohio, please skip the Miranda Lambert version. I have nothing against Mrs. Blake Shelton, but there is no substitute for Gillian Welch on this song.

Also, I’ll be linking up with Freshly Pieced’s Work in Progress Wednesday. If anyone is curious, I plan on going to Goodberry’s for ice cream if I can take my WIP Wednesday project to Finish it up Friday  in one week. It’d be a record for me…


  1. Kim S.

    This is so interesting! I love your improv piecing! How do you plan to appliqué it? By machine or by hand? I’m really excited to see the final project. Good luck on finishing in time to treat yourself to some ice cream! 😉

  2. Yvonne @ Quilting Jetgirl

    I struggle with setting expectations with people using photoshop or other tools, too. But sometimes it leads to interesting feedback that you would never have known about a customer. Good luck, I think you’ll be able to pull this off! 🙂

  3. Cornelia

    Funny — those are about the colors I associate with that song. And YES, that is the best song for when you wanna do something other than what you’re s’posed to do. 🙂 Lovely.

  4. Philipa (Ozzypip)

    Being an Australian I have no opinion to offer on Ohio 🙂 however it was interesting to look at the blocks with the photoshopping shape done. Very clever. I haven’t tried photoshop ever. Might have to one day but …. I don’t know the song you mention either… but if I google it will take care to avoid the “wrong versions” Hope you get your quick finish done. I had one last week. Was so fast it didn’t rate a mention in my WIP’s Finished it within the week. 

  5. Carol

    I really love that…I have been wanting to do something similar with the U.S. map, but I like the state idea too.  I would do a solid background.   

  6. Pingback: Ohio Love | Ants to Sugar – Fabric. Quilting. Some modern. Some traditional.

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