Thirty Stars, 1-26-24

In late summer or early fall, 2007, I answered the phone in the quilt shop and the caller identified herself as Frances Bailey from Country Living Magazine. I laughed – why in the world would they be calling the quilt shop? Jo I asked if she meant the REAL and actual magazine and she said yes. (Remember I have around 40 years old Country Living Magazines still today – I have the very first issue!). As I was enamored of this magazine I was impressed but suspicious. What would they be doing calling me and how did they even find me or know me? As it turns out we had been vending at the Country Living Fair in Columbus, Ohio for several years and had given out many copies of the Goat Gazette. One had reached Nancy Soriano, the editor-in-chief and she was impressed with one thing.

At that time we were teaching Beginning Quilting and we always thought it was a bad idea to ask a beginner to purchase the rotary mat, the ruler and the cutter just to give quilting a try. What if they hated it? They had spent about $100 on tools! So we loaned the tools to everyone taking the class. If they liked quilting we then gave them a 20% discount on the tools. Nancy was impressed that we would look at the customer’s side of what could be a prohibitive price which might keep them from taking the class.

So why was Country Living calling us? To present us the award of one of the Top Ten Women Entrepreneurs in the country! HOLY SMOKES!

We were invited to Chicago for the ceremony on March 15, 2008 at the Renaissance Hotel, One West Wackerman Drive. And there was a special entrepreneur issue where our picture was shown with the other 9. Can you believe I can’t find these pictures taken in Chicago. We had lunch with many well known “artists” such as Susan Brand and Amy Butler plus her husband David who also started designing fabric.

We were given a contract for two exclusive quilt patterns per year and the first one was to celebrate the magazine’s 30th anniversary. Thus – 30 stars.

The quilt was shown in the magazine and the kit was sold – I wish I knew how many kits we sold – we hired two more people just to cut and package kits!

We worked so hard to get this photo – this was back in the day of film and developing. Makes my head hurt to think about it. We chose this one because of our farm background.

It was such a whirlwind of activity in the shop! Many customers arrived at the farm with a copy of Country Living in their hands and we signed many autographs.

Guess who’s by the chair – it’s PAMMIE! We included a Pam card with each kit.

This was probably the most exciting event in my life! Our quilt in Country Living Magazine. Simply unbelievable.

We were looking forward to designing two quilts per year for the magazine when suddenly it all collapsed – new owners, new editor – neither of whom wanted a quilt twice a year. They were modernizing the look of the magazine and quilts would not be featured – no longer popular, etc. – no more homespun country, primitive, antiques and all that went with the look we loved. if you were a subscriber I’ll bet you can remember when it all changed – the issues became very small, nothing country and no quilts shown in rooms. I have over 30 years of Country Living Magazines and still love to look at them.

So the fame was short lived – but so fun while it lasted.

So for all of you who own kits and have never made 30 Stars, why not make it this winter? I opened this old picnic basket to find all these pieces and fabrics saved from that time.

Some closeups of the original quilt

Sad farm news – here’s Sylvia who always ran to greet me and would let me pick her up.

I lost Sylvia – I’m down to 9 hens!

I found Sylvia dead under a table in the barn this morning. She was so personable! Also very old – I think she would have been 10 or 11 this spring. I’ll sure miss her greeting.

Reader photos

86 thoughts on “Thirty Stars, 1-26-24

  1. Diane, Squeak, and Buddy in Central Ohio

    I am laughing outloud again! The person who drive that truck should NOT be driving! Good grief, sideways? I, too, loved Country Living Magazine, Mary. I do not think I have ever heard the story about how your quilt got on the cover! Very cool! And, I met you and Connie a couple of times at the Country Living Fair in Columbus, Ohio. Very fond memories😀❤️ I will have to see if I have the 30 stars pattern. If not, do you? I love all of the reader quilts and the ones you work on. Being suoer nurse—ha!— has kept me busy, but I am hoping to quilt tomorrow❤️ Raining and 44* here now.

    1. Mary

      So how’s your patient doing? Yes, I forgot to post that you can order the pattern for $5 and SASE. Duh. I was so worried it would crash that I got in a hurry.

      1. Diane and the gang in Central Ohio

        Patient just tested positive for Covid🙀. I cannot figure out how he got it. No one has been here. We did go to lunch last Wednesday, but wore our mash’s and sat away from everyone. Sigh. . Heading to urgent care for Paxlovid.

        1. Mary Etherington Post author

          Diane – he probably got it in the hospital! Ugh. I was pretty sick right after Christmas with Covid and my dr. Never even suggested Paxlovid . I wonder why.

          1. Diane, Squeak, and Buddy in Central Ohio

            That is odd. Our Dr. was quick to call in a prescription. I did hear that some insurance companies will not cover it and it is
            $1,400.00 now so I will check that out and not pay that! He got out of the hospital on 1/12 so I think it’s been too long. One friend that he saw had the “ sniffles”. Now I wonder if that wasn’t Covid. He is feeling better😀. Thanks for asking😀

          2. Mary Etherington Post author

            Diane – I’m sure my Medicare would have covered it – I’m going to ask why the next time I’m there.

  2. Chris

    I wasn’t aware of Country Living magazine but i wish I had known of it. What an honor to be featured in the magazine on their 30th anniversary. Sorry they had to sell out so soon after. And so sorry about your dear old hen. Will you be getting more hens?

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Chris – I can’t decide if I should get chicks or just be done with having chickens. Makes me sad to imagine the farm without them.

  3. Diane and the gang in Central Ohio

    PS. So sorry about Sylvia? Do you think it was old age or something else? She was so pretty. Very sad to lose her😢

  4. DebMac

    I loved the old “Country Living” magazine. My MIL would pass on her copies to me and I still have a file of ideas I clipped. I don’t remember seeing your “30 Stars” pattern but will have to check to see if she kept it. She may have let her subscription lapse by then. Or since she quilts, she may not have passed that issue on. We both were sad when the style changed as it just wasn’t “Country Living” anymore. Congratulations on being recognized by them.

  5. Deb in VA

    Well, Mary, you KNOW I have to reply!!! I absolutely LOVED reading all about 30 Stars!!! What an exciting time in your life!! I definitely remember when Country Living was no longer the country quilts magazine it had been and how thin it had gotten! I’m so sad to think of what could have been if you’d been allowed to publish 2 quilts each year!
    Yes, I have that kit and that pattern…and I’m more inspired than ever now to make this…now that I KNOW who wrote the pattern!!! Thank you for the story!
    For any of your readers who are interested, I was asked on my blog earlier this month how to get a copy of this pattern (because I wrote about it 13 years ago when I was celebrating our 30th wedding anniversary and I wanted to make the quilt for that reason.) This reader had just found that post about 30 Stars.

    I finally unearthed the pattern…along with sooo many Unfinished Projects in my closet–I then wrote a blog post on them all! And I contacted Mary to ask permission to make a copy of 30 Stars for this blog commenter since the pattern was out of print. Mary graciously consented….and that’s how I just recently found Mary, this blog, and ALL of her friends/commenters.
    And now she has told the 30 Stars story….it’s so interesting to me. Thank you Mary!!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Deb – you sort of lit a fire under me when you said someone was interested – still – in that pattern so I’m throwing it out there for anyone to buy it for $5 and SASE. I think I should be signed up for your blog!

  6. Betty Klosterman

    I don’t remember the year, but overnight Country Living changed from it’s great country format to a Modern magazing. Basically it was about city people moving to the ‘country’ and setting up their lives in the country….. That’s when my subscription was not renewed. I don’t know how long the magazine lasted after that.
    My copy of McCalls Quilting came this morning. It is now a quarterly publication. We’ll probably have a higher price for 4 magazines a year instead of 6. Higher costs….. The writing is on the wall?
    It is supposed to be really close to 60 on Sunday and Monday.
    Take care. Betty in Rapid City

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Betty – yup, that’s exactly what the magazine became and I was no longer interested. If we had been able to continue with that contract, it would have changed our business forever.

  7. Kathy L

    I subscribed to country living magazine and have about 25 years of them I just canceled my subscription because they don’t show what I like anymore I do remember that cover so I’ll have to dig it out. So sorry about Sylvia she was very pretty.

    1. Charlotte

      Mary, I love this story and so glad you shared it! 30 Stars is magnificent, and deserves to be enjoyed by a new audience. I do recall the pattern sold gangbusters. I’ll see if I can find a record— I’m a pack rat so it should be here somewhere

      1. Mary Etherington Post author

        Charlotte – why don’t you post a comment about how we met , etc. these readers would enjoy hearing about you!! I think of you so often.

  8. Pamela Dempsey in Northeast Texas

    Ohh, Mary! I am so,so sorry about Miss Sylvia! She was beautiful and sweet to run to you, happy to see you and get picked up. 😢 I didn’t know they could live so long.
    Your 30 stars quilt is stunning 😍. You deserve a nice special “iced tea “! 🤗 hugs!

  9. Marcia-Ohio

    Love reading the back story of the pattern. I have it but never made it. I never bought the kit but I really like the pattern.
    The pictures today were so good – even the truck. The driver is a ‘piece of work’. Sorry about your hen especially such a nice one.
    Our neighbor girl has 2 horses that have such funny personalities, I buy 5 lb bags of carrots at Sam’s and walk over once a week to feed them several, They get so excited, They shift their weight foot to foot and salivate. Animals make this world a better place.

  10. Jo in Michigan

    Hey Mary, first off let me say how sorry I am about Sylvia. Life on the farm has its sad days.
    I have been following you ever since I seen your quilt 30 Stars in Country Living magazine. I do not have the kit but I have the pattern. And after all this time I still haven’t made it. But it’s still as beautiful as the first day I opened my magazine up and seen it♥️ I still subscribe to Country Living and yes it has changed from back in the day but I still find inspiration from the country decor that they still do. But I truly miss the old Country Living. I was thrilled to read about 30 Stars and story behind the publication. Thank you for sharing ♥️
    Jo in Michigan .

  11. Cindy K

    What a great story about being published in Country Living magazine. Love the quilt too. I too have some old issues of the magazine although not as many as you. Country decorating never goes out of style as far as I’m concerned.

  12. Teresa in Indiana

    So sorry about Sylvia’s passing. She was so pretty. Animals have such personalities. I loved reading about 30 Stars. Too bad the magazine made such drastic changes. And that truck – no words needed.

  13. Judy from Wisconsin

    Something to make you laugh. Mary, when you showed the Thirty Stars quilt last night I immediately started to count the stars. I counted and counted and couldn’t come up with more than 29 stars. This morning I started again. 29 again. It took me till just now, Saturday night to find the 30th star. Is anyone else out there counting stars?

    1. Deb in VA

      Judy, a friend of mine said the same thing when I posted about 30 Stars. She started counting. Her guess was the 30th star was in the middle of the 29th. Is that what you guessed. That was my thought.

  14. Renee A

    I love the 30 Stars quilt that I made when it was released . It still remains one of my favorite quilts!!! I too was very sad to see Country Living Magazine change.

  15. Sue in PA

    Mary, will you be selling the Thirty Stars pattern again? It is very pretty. I love the combination of stars and courthouse steps blocks. I used to love getting Country Living magazine and subscribed for years but quit when it started getting smaller and smaller.

  16. Kim from Wi

    I recall being in your shop with my mom and we both admired the quilt hanging on the wall. It is stunning to see in person. At the time I considered myself a novice quilter, but I bought the pattern hoping to make it one day. Maybe this is the year to jump in and get it done. I’m so sorry Sylvia has passed; I enjoyed seeing her over the years in your posting. Some lovely pictures today and I love the bright cheery colors in the churn dash quilt.

  17. Lynne from NJ

    Love that pattern. Everytime I’ve seen it, I could only find 29 stars. Today I saw the center star within a star.
    I too was disappointed when Country Living magazine changed their format and I didn’t renew my subscription after that.
    This morning I had a poached egg on sourdough toast – delicious!

  18. Patricia

    Oh my gosh, Mary. I was a subscriber to country living for a long time. However, I don’t remember that particular copy, so I wonder if I had stopped it a while ago because I was running out of space. I love the quilt, and I read the comments, so i’m going to send for a copy. I noticed that you said it was published in 2008 and that was a tough year for me as my father was very ill. I’m so very sorry to hear of your special hen that passed. Our animals always tug at our hearts. The reader quilts are terrific. You have such talented people responding in your blog. The truck how does someone feel so entitled to take up so much space? Ugh! Have a happy Sunday. Pat in Maryland. It was 70 degrees here on Friday. I don’t know what season it is anymore. Blowing snow last week and now it’s raining. The snowdrops are up and blooming and the daffodils are up too. Yikes. Not even February.

  19. Susan K in Texas

    Here’s the truck story. Guy had a dually truck. Mr Dually parked as pictured in a busy barbecue restaurant lot – in prime parking spots. He was leaving at the same time as we were. He had to back up two spaces almost hitting another truck to leave. All he really needed to do was drive forward. If you can’t handle a big truck you shouldn’t be driving one.
    Mary I’m sorry to hear about your hen, Sylvia. It’s so hard when our special animal family members pass. I know you’ll be missing her happy greetings.
    That’s a wonderful story about the 30 Stars quilt. I too miss the Country Living magazine. My sisters, mom, and I would share issues of it. We too didn’t like the changed version. The quilt is beautiful and I can understand how you would sell a lot of kits and patterns. What a fun thing to happen!
    Beautiful quilts in the quilt show today. I really like the cat with pinwheels quilt and the happy colors churn dash quilt.

  20. Sue in PA

    Just saw your reply above to someone else about selling the pattern for $5. Thanks so much, Mary!
    So very sorry about Sylvia!

  21. Jill Klop

    Sorry to hear about Sylvia. I’m sure that’s a loss for you! I find the change in Country Living ironic. Here you still are and your blog gets so many comments. So many more than any other blog that I read! It’s a cool story though and I’m glad that you were highlighted as you were! Where is Country Living now?

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Jill – I can’t really say, I guess. Is it still published? And after all those wonderful years of issues that I still love. Sad.

      1. Teresa from Port Coquitlam, BC

        Hi Mary, yes it is still published but not 12 times per year anymore – only 6, and the issues are very thin now too. I too saw your quilt in my copy of the magazine and like so many others, I ordered the pattern from you and haven’t made the quilt. I just pulled it out and am going to go through my huge stash of reproduction fabrics. Sorry to hear about your chicken, we had a few make it 11. They too had very good lives.

  22. Steffi Smith

    Thank you once again for creative inspiration Mary! I have the 30 stars pattern and have wanted to make it from the moment I saw it! I’m going to copy yours and make one in patriotic colors for my daughter’s boyfriend who’s coming home after a 5 year military stint.
    Also your love of animals is touching. Thank you for the kindness you show.

  23. Jo in Wyoming

    Today was a sad but prideful day for us. The VA had a memorial for all the veterans lost last year. The roll call was hard, but me and my kids stood proud when they called Steve’s name. It was very moving.
    Your quilt is a perfect tribute to today for me.
    Losing a friend like Sylvia is hard. I had no idea chickens live that long.

    The quilt room with all that thread appears to be a wonderful place to play. The quilter with the new table is going to enjoy that every day.
    It’s almost mud season around here too. Much too early. Loretta came in with black feet!

    Tomorrow will be a better day.

    1. Jo in Wyoming

      PS, Mary…CONGRATULATIONS to you for being in the magazine. A little fame does wonders for the spirit. What a great idea letting beginners borrow equipment. It’s a huge investment for beginners who may make only 1 quilt. I’ve heard that many times.
      Too bad about Country Living. But on the bright side…you don’t have to deal with them to sell your patterns.

    2. Vicki Ibarra

      Although it was sad, I was glad to see you say it was prideful as well. My Dad served in WW II and I remember his funeral gun salute to this day. Thinking of you.

  24. Carolyn Boutilier

    I still have the pattern for 30 stars. You are right about the changes with the magazine and I stopped my subscription . Sorry about Sylvia your hen. We were 72 degrees yesterday and broke a record for the valley.Carolyn b Shenandoah Valley Va

      1. Kathy in western NY

        Deb- small world. I have a friend in Staunton and love your town. I remember when we pulled in with our motor home and all we saw coming down an incline was so many beautiful church steeples and it took my breath away. We parked at a church near one of the Statler Brothers homes.

  25. patti

    mary, so sorry about the loss of sylvia. i know you will miss her. i loved your story of the 30 stars and the whole magazine thing. i’ve never heard of that magazine. what is it with magazines these days anyway? i subscribe to at least four different quilt magazines and it seems like they come so erratically. some of my subscriptions are many years out. i admit i don’t care for as many as so many are published by the same group now. the quilt pictures are fantastic. such a range and great colors. i’m glad i stayed up late. now to bed. thanks to all. patti in florida

  26. Martha W in WY

    I’m sorry for the loss of Sylvia. I think you should get some new chicks. You’ve lost several of your farm animals this past year. Having your chores gets you going in the morning and evening. It’s something to look forward to and the animals depend upon you.
    I like the 30 Stars quilt. I’ll be sending for your pattern. As for that pickup, I think it would have been grand if people would have parked him in with a vehicle on each end.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Martha – I have only 9 hens, 3 goats and 6 geese. When I lost over half my chickens to an owl or hawk attack I decided I would let my flock go. It was so devastating for me and then after that a fox killed several hens during the day inside my barn!! I was flabbergasted and was heartbroken. To see my beautiful hens reduced to a pile of feathers was life changing for me. I had always planned to get chicks this spring but now I don’t know. I think I’ll go through this next summer with the 9 I have left and decide next year. It’s such great pleasure to see them strolling on my newly mowed lawn but that always means they’re out in the open for a hawk, owl or eagle to swoop down and get them. I won’t get them to lock them up – free range or none but I’m also making them targets. Sigh.

  27. Sharon Ray

    Oh how I loved Country Living magazine. I bought my first issue in 1983 and got a subscription for YEARS! When I noticed it changing, I sadly stopped the subscriptions and didn’t even bother to look at them in the store. It was one of the best magazines ever. I’m pretty sure it was changing before 2007 but what a disappointment for you! I finally got rid of most of them but kept the recipes in quite a few. This magazine is what led me to quilting because of all the beautiful quilts out of my price range. I took my first quilt class in 1985 and have been at it ever since. I think I have about 3 of the old issues left that I just couldn’t toss. Thanks for the blog about nothing!!

  28. karen smith

    What a great memory. I remember the Country Living Fair shows at the State Fairgrounds in Ohio. I love the quilt. Are there still patterns available? I would like to make one. Beautiful quilt by talented quilters. You deserve to be honored.

  29. Kelli

    Thank you so much for sharing the Thirty Stars story! I loved hearing about your adventure with Country Living magazine. I sure do remember when things changed with the magazine – my sis and I were so disappointed we stopped buying it! But we would look through the old ones for fun. So sorry about Sylvia 😥

  30. Gloria from CC

    So sorry about your beautiful hen. You’ll be missing her greeting every day.
    I also stopped getting Country Living when they so drastically changed their format until a couple of years ago when I noticed they had changed back to primitive. I’ve been loving this new format for a couple of years now.
    I too have the Thirty Stars pattern but not the kit which is hard to believe. I’m going to dig deeper to make sure the kit isn’t lurking in the gym locker where most of CT kits are stored.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Gloria – I can’t believe you don’t have the kit! Look a little harder. Is Country Living on the newsstands again? I never go anywhere so I had no idea. How’s the hip?

  31. Scott

    I love that 30 stars quilt and have it on my to do list ! Was very excited to see it in Country Living and yes I remember the ‘change’ lost all of my interest after that – miss Mary Engelbreit’s Home Companion too – many magazines about homes started dropping out of sight around 2008. Nancy Soriano is such a dear person. Gets the artist mind.
    So sorry about your hen – I’m sure her life was much better with you though!

    1. Kathy in NY

      Scott – I too miss Home Companion magazine but thankful I kept all my issues till they stopped publishing it. I still look back and admire all the colors and designs in them.

    2. Mary Etherington Post author

      Scott – I still have all of my Mary Engelbreit books and magazines and look at them still. I didn’t know you read the blog, Scott – are you my old friend, Scott, or someone else? Silly question, I know.

      1. Scott Hansen

        Oh it’s me of course – I read the blog often but don’t get around to commenting 😏

        1. Mary Etherington Post author

          Scott – oh, how fun to hear from you!! How’s your family? Your work? Linda? Have you completely settled into your new place?

  32. Kathy in western NY

    I am so glad you wrote all this down in your blog as quilting history is and will be important for years to come. Quilting isn’t going away as yesterday being National local quilt shop day and many of the shops in our area did events and people went shopping. It’s all good just as books are still read.
    I sure loved seeing all the quilts this morning, polka dots, nine patch and all pretty colors to view. I am so sorry you lost another chicken. You are much tougher than me being surrounded by many pets on the farm. I was a mess seeing the cardinals and blue jays suffer during the cold weather at the bird feeders. I wanted to give them blankets to keep warm wherever they were at night.
    I don’t have much pink or rose color in my stash but I am thinking after seeing your pictures and the pattern I will be ordering that I might need to do some fabric shopping. Have you seen any in other color ways than yours?

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Kathy – I have several pictures of other color ways that I will post tonight.

      1. Kathy in NY

        Thanks Mary for showing options on your next blog post. I have my envelope with the order ready to mail tomorrow. I ordered your snowman so I should be getting that one soon. Just love that we can get your patterns still.

  33. Sue

    Mary, thanks for sharing your story of the 30 stars quilt. I remember when that was featured in Country Living magazine. I just had to buy that pattern, but still haven’t made the quilt. Your story has moved it it up on my to do list. The Country Living fair was a great event. I was able to make the trip there several years ago. Such a beautiful setting.

  34. Carmen M.

    Sorry to hear about Sylvia! I have a friend who also names her chickens and loves them as pets!
    I love the 30 Stars quilt. I am lucky enough to have that pattern I had forgotten about it, I Thank You for sharing it with us today love the story behind it! It was Wonderful of you to share your quilting tools with students, what an Awesome shop to take classes from and then give them a discount too should they purchase!
    I also loved the original Country Living, stopped purchasing when it changed. The same as another very loved magazine, Primitive Quilts and Projects has gone all digital, did not renew as I like to have a real magazine in my hands, and I can see on a blog that many others feel the same, so sad!

    1. Connie R.

      Carmen, I feel the same way you do about Primitive Quilts and Projects magazine. I want a magazine I can hold in my hands, not a digital copy. Especially when it comes to quilt magazines. I want to study the quilt pictures for details and, don’t want to have to print out the patterns on my own printer paper and ink. I won’t be renewing my subscription either and, I’ve been a subscriber since the beginning. I’m afraid the magazine won’t survive very long in that format.

  35. Fran in SW Iowa

    Love the info behind the Country Living mag. Mary, you are very humble about your fame!

    Sad about the chicken. She lived a long life.

    I so enjoy your stories and photos. I am at retreat but I make sure I read your blog every morning.

  36. Sally J. Mi.

    Many years ago I bought the 30 Stars kit when I saw it in the Country Living Magazine. I did make it a few years ago and love it.
    I really enjoyed the story and info of how 30 Stars got into the magazine.
    Sorry about the loss of Sylvia.

  37. Brenda Ks

    Mary so sorry about Sylvia!
    I bought the 30 stars kit and made it up right away.
    Wasn’t there one more before they changed? I had a kit that I made up. It was green that wasn’t my favorite color but I bought it anyway because I was going to do everyone you did. Unfortunately they quit and I quit them..

  38. Lisa in eastern Washington state

    Mary, so happy to see your post about the 30 stars quilt! I bought that kit but sadly it’s a UFO. I purchased many more of the featured fabrics from the Buggy Barn,also sadly gone…, in order to make the quilt a queen size. I’ve been working my way through my UFO’s this winter, just finished quilting and binding another 2 of them. Seeing your post has spurred me on to digging out the 30 stars. Sadly I stopped subscribing to Country Living about 2008 too, but as another reader posted, I’ve seen a few of recent issues and they seem to be back on track again. I got rid of all the back issues in a recent move. So sorry about your hen, it must break your heart every time you lose one of your beloved animals.

  39. Susy Boyer in San Diego

    Dear Mary & Connie,
    What a great story with the magazine. You gals were so thoughtful to supply the tools for quilt making. I’m sure there was no problem selling the tools later. No doubt you gals instilled the love of quilting immediately! Sorry it was short lived. The new owners just didn’t get it. I love how you said, if anyone has a kit out there why not get it out and sew it now. Oh, you know us too well! Ha, ha. You could even say, if you don’t have that one then go pull out any kit you have that hasn’t made it to the sewing machine yet.
    Sorry about Phyllis, sounds like she live a long full life on your farm. She was a pretty girl.
    Thank you for sharing with us. Hugs.

  40. Vicki in Seattle

    Mary, thanks for the wonderful history of “30 Stars” and offering the pattern to us. Can’t wait to make the quilt.
    You have such a talent for writing. The blog readers are lucky recipients every day!
    We share your happy times and the sad times.
    So sorry about Sylvia.

  41. Beth

    Sorry about Sylvia. My condolences.
    I was tickled to read about your famous quilt so I can imagine a little of what you felt. And how can a Country Living magazine not have quilts in it???

  42. Janet Gluesenkamp

    I remember that wonderful quilt, pulled the page from the magazine when I needed to purge my collection of Country Livings. So fun to see it again. Loved that magazine and likewise did not continue subscribing when they changed. They must have lost many customers. Such a shame for a terrific publication. Snuggle Hazel for me, so cute.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Janet – after all these readers saying they quit the magazine I so wish I could tell those who made the decision to change that we’re all still here and they’re gone – what does that say?

  43. frances bailey

    MARY!!! I was sent your awesome blog post by Charlotte and had to write. WOW!! Those were fun times… Your work was so beautiful and the very best part of that job was finding artists like you to showcase. Thanks for sharing this and for sharing your art with the world. HUGS!!! Frances Bailey (formerly at Country Living)

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      FRANCES!!! Oh my gosh, what a surprise to hear from you. Haha! Simply delighted! I will never forget your phone call – never. Why would Country Living ever call me? I still love the country look and I love looking through those old magazines – over 30 years worth upstairs on my shelves. What are you doing now? Charlotte and I sort of keep in touch through my blog and I love it.
      The story of Thirty Stars has tickled my readers to no end! I still say it’s the most exciting thing that’s ever happened to me – haha!!!!

  44. Sandy in Indiana

    Hi Mary,

    Really enjoyed reading your post today! Loved the story about the 30 star quilt….it is stunning!
    So sorry about Sylvia…she was beautiful!

    Enjoy your week!

  45. Connie in NV

    Another exciting basketball game with CC, she is unbelievable.
    Love the 30 stars quilt and the original fabrics!

  46. Lee Bowers

    Mary I absolutely remember the changing of the magazine….it all went white!!
    I think Mary Emmerling
    was responsible for the change in country.
    She had a magazine for a year… I still have my copies…lots of white and folk art not antiques.
    I also I have some of her books. Time marches on.
    Love everything Country Threads stood for. It influenced my style and my life.
    Thanks for the memories. Lee

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Lee – and surprisingly I love the all white and neutral look, too, but I’m country through and through! I have a stack of ME magazines, too.

  47. Sharon G NE IN

    I loved hearing your Country Living story. How exciting it must have been for you and Connie. I’m sorry about your hen. I know my Grandma had favorite hens and she would talk to them and they would look at her with such bright eyes. Memories of my youth on the farm. I love your 30 stars quilt!

  48. Jan Smith

    Thanks for the trip down memory lane. I definitely remember your star quilt, and I still love it. It has a timeless look, which is something the editors of Country Living abandoned. It was so fun to receive a new issue, and examine the photos for antique quilts, and blue painted furniture, among other things. I hadn’t realized why it changed was due to new ownership. Doesn’t seem that they understood what a good thing they had.
    So sorry about your loss of Sylvia. I had no idea that chickens could live so long! Which reminds me. Have you ever seen a book called, Allowed to Grow Old? Farm animals that live out their entire lives are featured. Being a vegetarian, I have always remembered those faces, especially the elderly pig on the cover.

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Jan – thanks, Jan – we all remember those wonderful issues of Country Living!

  49. Stef Breslin

    I am going to go find my 30 stars kit and get sewing! Thanks for the kick of inspiration! Loved it then, love it now!

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