Inside the Sagrada Familia

You have to buy tickets to go inside the Sagrada Familia. Entries are timed to control the crowd. I am Catholic so I did wonder if, or how often, mass is said. Pretty often as it turns out.


The space is massive and filled with colored light. You find yourself looking up, a lot.


This space is about light and color. The shapes feel organic and alive, and amazingly modern.








We also went up into one of the spires. That’s for tomorrow.

The Sagrada Familia

Ever since I learned about the Sagrada Familia in a history of architecture class in college, I have wanted to see it with my own eyes. It really is a spectacular place.

Click here to go to the official site: There is more information there than I can possibly include in a post. And here is a link to the apartment where we stayed. This is the view from our window:


This is not a subtle building. There is something going on everywhere you look. However, the more you look, the more you can feel the rhythm of the place.

This is the newer side of the church that depicts the Passion of Christ. The long columns simulate Christ’s tendons, the shorter white columns above that simulate ribs. The cross and figures at the top of the ‘ribs’ were installed just before we arrived. Workmen were taking down the scaffolding as we left Barcelona.

The statues on this side are more severe and I found them to be very moving.




The opposite side of the basilica is happier, and more worn. There are depictions of the nativity and of Christ’s early life. The style of the statues is different, less angular.






Catherine, this one is for you :-):


This is the back of the basilica.


If I remember correctly there are 5 more spires to be added to the top, plus the ones that will be built on the front. The front side (on the right in the photo below) is the least finished side:


The scale model shows more spires and a bank of stairs that might go into the street, and maybe into the apartment building across the street. I’m not sure how that’s going to work and, thankfully, it isn’t my problem.

There is a planned finish date, perhaps by 2026. Until then, the work will continue. (Look for the workmen, on the tallest spire.)



Palau De la Musica Catalana

After our food tour, we went to the Palau De la Musica Catalana. It is a beautiful space where choirs sing. Not just any choirs… magnificent choirs. And not just classical music, but all kinds of amazing music.

I wish I knew more about music, but I don’t. We are here because it is a famous, wonderful space. I want to come back to hear choirs sing right here.

Side note: Since I’ve been in Spain, when I google something, it is in Spanish. I don’t want to link to a site you may not be able to read so, if you want to know more, google Palau De la Musica Catalana. You’ll be glad you did.

Palau De la Musica Catalana-1

Mosaics are everywhere. This space was designed by a contemporary of Gaudi, Lluís Domènech i Montaner,

There are muses that surround the stage, to inspire the musicians. Honestly, doesn’t that sound wonderful? To be surrounded by muses?

And then there is the stained glass, on the outside of the building…

But the best piece is inside, above the stage. It is not flat, but dips down in the center. The space if lit by lovely, colored light…

After this, we went to see the inside of the Sagrada Familia. That visit deserves its very own post!

The Cathedral in Newcastle…

We visited Christ Church Cathedral this morning.


It’s a beautiful, old Anglican Cathedral that occupies a high point of the city of Newcastle and it was open this morning.


I was surprised to find a church filled with needlework! The banners are collage quilts!



As was the altar piece.


These quilts fit the space so very well. It’s impressive! But wait… there’s more!


There are needle pointed kneeling cushions in every pew! There may be repeating designs, but I didn’t see any.



These lovely fiber quilts and cushions, made by hand, make this space feel warmer, more comforting. I am impressed.

A gift from Caryl…

I’ll bet every one of you knows and loves Caryl Bryer Fallert-Gentry’s quilts. They are stunning works of art that make you smile all the way through to your heart. Recently Caryl sent me this email:

Since I have retired from teaching and retail, I am, as time permits, offering my patterns and digital workshops free of charge on my website.

I have just uploaded my most complete workshop ever, showing in minute detail how I made my quilt, Soaring Compliments, from start to finish. You will find it and all of my other free patterns and instructions at:

Caryl’s sharing of her knowledge and techniques is so very generous. I know that I am grateful, as are you.

Thank you, Caryl!

Screen Shot 2018-02-16 at 9.02.23 AM

Show and tell…


Susan Ahmad sent me a photo of her finished Tile Tango quilt—it’s lovely! She told me that she is an avid gardener with a special passion for day and Asian lilies. This flower design felt lily-like to her so she matched the colors of her lilies with her flower fabric, except for the blue. She says she’s still hoping to grow a blue lily.

Susan altered the setting from my original quilt (Tile Tango from The Quilter’s Practical Guide To Color) removing the corner triangles and adding sashing. It’s a very good look. You know that there is nothing wrong with changing a pattern to suit yourself. Personally, I enjoy seeing how you all make my designs work in your quilts so please do send pictures :-).

Thank you, Susan, for sharing you quilt and the story behind it.