Monthly Archives: June 2011

Accuquilt GO! Baby Cutter – a tutorial

Bliss pillow

Now I know you’ve seen these all over blogland and you probably still think to yourself ‘hmm…I’m not sure about that’ because I know I did for the longest time. Accuquilt generously sent me this GO! Baby cutter a little while ago and I sat on it for a while, seeing if it actually got used or if it was just a novelty. I ordered the 2 ½” strip die, along with 3 ½” tumblers and drunkards path and hand on heart I have used the strips a lot. I cut my binding to 2 ½” so it’s been really handy having this little baby cutter. I also love scrappy binding, so it’s been fun using to get through leftovers from finished quilt tops and making (miles of) binding to have on hand for future projects.
The 2 ½” strip can also be cross cut into little squares, and if you follow my personal blog at all you will probably know I have a bit of an obsession with 2 ½” squares. So, for me, the strip die alone has made this GO! Baby cutter worthwhile.

{happiness}

I bet back in the days of scissors and templates people were freaking out about rotary cutters and mats…so I think this little cutie might be the future. Or at least part of it. It is honestly, pinky swear, fun to use and makes light work of cutting. Last night I sat and cut out drunkards path pieces in front of the TV. Super simple, no bending over the table hunched up and complaining, no tricky templates to cut round. Just stack in the GO! Baby and turn the handle. I have a bucket list of dies I want for Christmas. The hexagons and circles are top of the list http://www.accuquilt.com/go-shop/dies/go-baby/go-hexagon-2-3-5.html http://www.accuquilt.com/go-shop/dies/go-baby/go-circle-2-3-5.html I have a feeling they’d make light work of tedious cutting!

small yet mighty

I’ve been promising this tutorial for a while. The basic block for the pillow was in the current issue of Fat Quarterly, but by adding borders and quilting I made a cute 20” pillow to throw on the trunk that I sit on when I’m hand stitching. (And the cat uses as a bed at night)

Ready? Let’s go (this is super picture heavy, so I apologize in advance!)

First up grab yourself the necessary supplies. You will need;

  • Either 1 charm pack/35 5” squares (I used Bliss by Bonnie and Camille for Moda) or 12 pieces of fabric each measuring 6 x 12”
  • 2 fat quarters of co-ordinating fabric (Old New by Lecien)
  • 22” square piece of wadding
  • 22” square piece of cotton (I used muslin, this is for the lining so won’t be seen)
  • ½ yard cotton fabric for making an envelope back
  • co-ordinating machine sewing/quilting thread
  • Accuquilt GO! Baby cutter
  • 3 ½” tumbler die
  • 6 x 12” cutting mat
  • 2 ½” strip cutter
  • 6 x 24” cutting mat
  • scissors

For my pillow I used a charm pack because I always seem to buy them and never use them up. It works much better if you use 6 x 12” pieces of fabric, as you’ll get 3 tumblers per piece, rather than 1 per charm, and only 2 at a time (you can see what I mean in the picture below).

Lay the fabric onto the die, right side up. If you use charms you’ll need to ‘fill in’ the gap for the 3rd tumbler. Just use a little scrap piece of fabric.

1

Pop the cutting mat on top and roll through the cutter. You do have to apply a little pressure but my 5 yr old managed it no problems.

Now, accuquilt say these dies can cut through 6 layers of fabric. I tried and it works. It was more successful when I used the strip cutter die than this tumbler, but it definitely made light work of cutting up my charm pack!

2

Aren’t they cute?

3

Even cuter when stacked!

4

Now, sew them together. You need to lay out 5 rows of 7 tumblers, move them around until you like the way they look and take them in pairs to the sewing machine.

The Accuquilt GO! Baby cutter has a neat trick of trimming your dog ears off, so you know where to match up your blocks. Clever, huh?

Just match up the little notches (or the flat edges in this case) and sew….

5

Open out and press the seam to one side. See how nice and flat they look?

6

Rinse and repeat with all the rows…

7

Now press nice and flat and square up the block.

8

Press the co-ordinating fat quarters and, using rotary cutter and ruler, cut into 6 x 22” wide strips.

As before, lay the fabric on the die. You really can cut up to 6 layers at a time, so make the most of it! Pop the cutting mat on top and roll through the cutter.

9

Sew 4 strips around the edges of the tumbler patchwork. Sew the top and bottom first, and then both sides. The remaining strips will be used later, so set them aside for now.

Press well and make a quilt sandwich using the wadding piece and muslin lining fabric. I used my walking foot as a guide and quilted narrow lines running horizontally across the pillow top. My personal preference is a well quilted pillow, it keeps it nice and firm and sits up better. Once quilted square up and trim away excess wadding and lining.

10 (and 11 )

Now prepare your envelope back.

From the ½ yard of fabric cut 2 pieces each measuring 18 X 22”.

I took 2 spare strips from the border fabric and folded them in half just as you would to make quilt binding and attached them to the 22” side. As you would attach binding to a quilt, sew the folded strip raw edges together but on the WRONG SIDE of the fabric, then fold over to the right side and machine stitch down.

Lay the quilted pillow top right side down and lay 2 pieces of backing on top, right sides up. Make sure they overlap generously in the middle.

13

Pin well all the way round. Add extra pins to where the edges of the opening are. Using a zigzag or serging stitch stitch all the way round the pillow edge.

Trim the excess backing away.

12

Take 4 2 ½” strips and sew end to end to make binding. Press in half along the full length and attach to the pillow as you would a quilt, either finishing by machine or hand.

14

Sit back and smile. That wasn’t a bad way to spend a morning, was it?

charm pack pillow

You can find out more about the GO! Baby cutter and the other products accuquilt make by heading over to their website http://www.accuquilt.com/ and watch this space for details of a really cool giveaway coming soon!

Going Coastal Fabric Winner

Thanks to everyone who entered our Going Coastal fabric giveaway!  It was great reading about your favorite beaches, and it seems like everyone’s just as excited about the Going Coastal collection as we are.

Congratulations to the winner of the Going Coastal fabric winner: #36, Lisa Marie, who said:

I’ve been to a handful of great beaches but I’m not sure I have a favorite. Some that I liked are those on the big island of Hawaii, in Cancun, on the outer banks of NC, and on the Oregon Coast. Also, when I was in my 20?s I went to Venice Beach in California and that was a unique experience! LOVE the fabrics, thanks for the chance to win!

Lisa Marie, we don’t have an email or blog address for you, so please contact us at winstuff@fatquarterly.com with your mailing information and we’ll get your fabric out to you ASAP.

Stay tuned for more great fabric introductions here at Fat Quarterly!

By |June 27th, 2011|winners|4 Comments

Community News: Partnership Quilts for 2012 Tokyo Quilt Festival

Do you enjoy working on collaborative projects with other talented quilters?  Ever dreamed of having something that you’ve created hanging in one of the world’s major quilt shows?  Well, here’s your chance!

Ayumi, the wildly talented and inspirational quilter and voice of the Pink Penguin blog, has put out a call for blocks for a series of Partnership Quilts that will be on display at the 2012 Tokyo Quilt Festival.  From Ayumi’s post:

Each year the Tokyo Quilt Festival exhibits lots of Partnership Quilts, which are made by quilt blocks submitted by everyone. A theme for partnership quilts is set by a popular Japanese quilter/textile designer annually, and she will put all blocks submitted into groups. Folks there will piece all blocks and make them into quilts accordingly.

2011′s theme was “Flower” and there were 10,344 blocks submitted total from all over the world. Under supervision of Yoko Saito, an author of many Japanese sewing books, those blocks turned into 86 quilts to be exhibited at the festival. They did a great job on putting similar blocks together and I so enjoyed seeing many flower themed quilts there.

Now for the exciting part: this year’s supervisor will be Suzuko Koseki, author of so many fabulous sewing and quilting books.  She’s looking for blocks that follow this year’s theme: “Triangles & Squares.”  All of the details can be found in Ayumi’s post, and everyone’s invited to join in the fun over in her Flickr group.  Hope to see you there?

Have a bit of community news that you’d like to share with our readers?  Drop us a line at submissions@fatquarterly.com with more information.  We’d love to share community events and activities with all of our readers!

1001 Peeps Summer Camp

We’re excited to be part of Lizzy House’s 1001 Peeps Summer Camp this year.  After the success of last summer’s Castle Peeps Summer Camp, Lizzy has assembled a staff of counselors to lead campers in all sorts of fun summer activities showcasing her fantastic new 1001 Peeps fabric line.  We’re working on our project idea now, but camp has already begun.  Be sure to head over to both Sew Mama Sew and Alexia’s blog to check out the beginning of what is sure to be an unforgettable collection of free project ideas!

Here’s the full schedule.  We’ll see you back here on the 8th!

June 17: Sew Mama Sew <— ALREADY LIVE!

June 24: Alexia Abegg <— ALREADY LIVE!

July 1: Lemon Cadet

July 8: Fat Quarterly <— (that’s us  : )

July 15: Quilt Asylum

July 22:  Ms McPorkchop Quilts

July 29: Flax and Twine

August 5: Heather from House of a la Mode

August 12:  Make Something

August 19: Whipstitch

August 26: Happy Zombie

So pin on your badge, apply some sunscreen, grab your mosquito repellent & rotary cutter, and get ready for camp!

Community News: The Farmer’s Wife Quilt-Along

Farmer's Wife Quilt-a-Long
Photo by Angela – Fussy Cut

Looking for  a fun, long-term quilting project?  Do you enjoy quilting along with other talented, inspirational quilters?  Have an overflowing scrap bin and searching for a great way to put a dent in it?

Well, look no further!  Join the ever-growing crowd participating in the Farmer’s Wife Quilt-Along, hosted by the talented Amanda of Ms. McPorkchop Quilts and Angela of Fussy Cut.

Not familiar with the Farmer’s Wife Sampler Quilt?  It’s made from patterns contained in a book of the same name written by Laurie Ann Hird.  The book contains templates and patterns for 111 6″ quilt blocks, each accompanied by a letter written by a true farmer’s wife in response to the question, “If you had a daughter of marriageable age, would you, in light of your own experience, have her marry a farmer?”  The blocks range from simple to complex, and many quilters are enjoying the content of the letters just as much as the challenge of making the quilt itself.

The quilt-along (hosted over on the Farmer’s Wife Quilt-Along Flickr group, which has rapidly grown to 493 members!) is a VERY flexible program.  You can move as fast (or as slow) as you like.  You can tackle the blocks in any order you choose.  The organizers have chosen to set the pace at 2 blocks per week, but no one’s going to hold you to it.

Here at FQHQ, both Katy and I have decided to jump into the fray.  Here are my first six blocks, mixing up some prints from Kate Spain’s upcoming Terrain line for Moda with some of my other favorites.  I guess I’m going for a kind of “flora + fauna” theme.  I have to say, Terrain complements SO many of my other favorite fabric lines beautifully.  Think Central Park was big?  I predict Terrain is going to be HUGE!

Farmer's Wife QAL | First 6 blocks

And here are Katy’s.  I’m green with envy of her quilt already, even if she’s only 3.6% done with it so far.  That classy lady is using Liberty fabrics as the basis for her design, and if her first six blocks are any indication, it’s going to be a stunner.

Farmer's Wife quilt along - weeks 1 & 2

Quilt-along organizer Amanda is going for an eclectic, scrappy mix for her blocks.  Her philosophy for this quilt is to do her blocks in “whatever colors I feel like sewing with that day.”  I LOVE that approach!  And, because of Amanda’s keen eye for pattern and color, her “random” blocks just seem to belong together.

weeks 1 & 2
Photo by Amanda / msmcporkchopquilts

Fellow QAL organizer Angela is also going with a scrappy assortment of her most favorite fabrics for her blocks.  I would describe Angela’s style as bright, clean, and sophisticated, and I think her quilt is going to showcase that style beautifully.

Angela's Blocks
Photo by Angela – fussycut

Even if you have no interest in quilting along, the Flickr group is full of some SERIOUS eye candy.  Here is a collection of some of our favorite blocks from the first two weeks of the quilt-along:

Farmer's Wife QAL Inspiration Blocks

Photo credits:
1. Farmer’s wife quilt-along, 2. FWQAL week 2 blocks, 3. Farmer’s Wife QAL – Block 23, 4. FWQA- Block 2,
5. Farmers Wife 1 Attic Windows, 6. Bat Wing, 7. FWQA- Block 26, 8. Farmer’s Wife QAL [week 1],
9. Farmer’s Wife Quilt-a-Long – Block 3, 10. farmer’s wife sampler, block 2, 11. Farmers Wife 39 Friendship, 12. Block 1 – attic windows,
13. Farmer’s Wife #2, 14. Farmer’s Wife Quilt-a-Long – Block 2, 15. FWQA- Block 1, 16. FWQAL #90 Storm Signal

We’re especially fond of Lynne’s (Lynne @ Lilys Quilts) fabric selections for her Farmer’s Wife quilt.  She’s motoring along and is already WAY ahead of schedule!  (It’s addictive, I tell you.)

Someone tell me to stop this madness
Photo by Lynne @ Lilys Quilts

So what are you waiting for? Pick up the book, join the Flickr group, grab a button (below), and get sewing!  We’d love to see what you create.

FWQAL ButtonsImage credits:
1. Farmer’s Wife Quilt-a-long button, 2. fwqal button, 3. Farmers Wife Quilt-Along, 4. FWQAL button?

Fat Quarterly Fabric Pack with Wondrous Wovens

For this installment of the Fat Quarterly Fabric Pack we’ve partnered with the wondrous Cathy of Wondrous Woven Fabrics, our favorite spot to shop for some of our favorite hard-to-find fabrics.  Cathy’s got a great eye for fabric and stocks an eclectic mix of prints that includes Isso Ecco & Heart, Daisy Janie organics, Lonni Rossi, and Sharon Sowell.

For this fabric pack — one of our favorite (and most modern) yet — we’ve pulled together some of our current obsessions: Moda Cross Weaves, Marcia Derse, Modern Madness champion Habitat, some Anna Maria Horner, and a mosaic print by Meera.

We hope you love it as much as we do!  You can purchase the fabric pack here … and be sure to say “hi” to Cathy for us!

TOP ROW: Marcia Derse, graphite from Modern Textiles: Marcia Derse, Birch Bark turquoise; Anna Maria Horner; turn of events in plum (Innocent Crush)

BOTTOM ROW: Jay McCarroll, drop cloth in plum (Habitat); Moda Cross Weave in natural; Meera, mosaic in sage (Watercolour Garden)

Be Our Guest: Nova’s Peek-a-Boo Bunting Tutorial

Hello! It’s Nova here, just popping in with a tutorial on how to make the ‘Peek-a-Boo’ Bunting that I first made for the Design Challenge block in the Fussy Cut Issue of Fat Quarterly.

I’ve since incorporated this block idea into a couple of cushions…

…and a playful, interactive wall hanging…

…all of which have little surprises hiding under the bunting flags.

Peek – a – Boo Bunting Tutorial

If you have any questions you can drop me a line via my blog.

Enjoy!

~Nova

Summersault Winners

Congratulations to the two winners of our Summersault fat quarter bundle giveaway!

#9, Sarah @ Pings And Needles, who said:

“Oh I just love this line of fabric … I need to make a quilt for my little god-daughter and this line would be perfect! She loves jumping in puddles and is generally tigger-like! Thank you for the chance … and a lovely interview too …”

#108, Heather, who said:

“I’d make a quilt for sure! I love the fabrics! I’m not sure what I what kind of quilt I’d made but I’d probably mix the fabrics with other ones I have.”

Congratulations to Sarah & Heather!  Please email us at winstuff@fatquarterly.com with your mailing information and we’ll send your fabric out ASAP.

By |June 20th, 2011|winners|2 Comments

“Going Coastal” with Emily from Crazy Old Ladies Quilts

We hope you’re enjoying our tour of some of this season’s most exciting new fabric releases.  Today, we’re meeting the designer behind one of the most talked-about new lines at Quilt Market in Salt Lake City last month.  Katy and I had the opportunity to meet Emily Herrick, the creative mind behind Crazy Old Ladies Quilts, in her beautiful (and award-winning) booth as she introduced passers-by to her debut fabric collection with Michael Miller Fabrics, Going Coastal.  Naturally, we wanted to get to know Emily a bit more and learn about her decidedly beachy new collection … and we thought you might want to eavesdrop on our conversation.

Oh, and Emily was totally game for playing along in our “masthead takeover” program.  Take a look at our absolutely coastal new blog header!

Tell us a little bit about yourself, and how you became interested in sewing and quilting.

I am a thirty-something, stay at home Mom. And while I love that I am able to be at home with my kids I really need something to do for ME. Several years ago before I was expecting my youngest child I got the urge to make a very SPECIFIC quilt. I spent hours and hours on it and was very pleased with how it turned out. The town I lived in holds a little quilt show every year so I decided to enter the quilt I had made. To my astonishment it won Best of Show and I was hooked. I’ve been quilting like crazy ever since. Oh, you want to know about that SPECIFIC quilt? Well, after many years of contemplating I’ve decided to finally release it as a pattern. So watch for it later this summer!

How did you then transition your love of quilting into pattern design and, now, fabric design?

My passion for quilting is all about the creative outlet. From the time I started quilting I have always made up my own designs. I would go into a quilt shop, see a quilt hanging and think “That quilt it really cool. I think I want to make that. Except instead of this, I’ll do this. And Instead of that part right there, I’ll do this instead.” I would rarely buy a quilt pattern because I never had intentions of following it. I would go home, start cutting and sewing, and by the time I had the top finished I had a completely different quilt.

I don’t think my patterns are better or more original than anyone else’s out there- their just ME. I decided to start marketing them when many of my friends and acquaintances asked about them. I figure- I’m designing them anyway, might as well see if someone else wants them too? And here I am.

I didn’t know I wanted to design fabric until I had an idea of what I wanted to see on fabric. I knew that the ideas I had in my head I had never seen on fabric before- at least not the way I was envisioning them. So I started drawing. Pretty soon I had a good sized folder of drawings. At that point I was so in love with those sketches I couldn’t bear the thought of never having them in fabric to play with. Now I’m lucky enough to be working with the folks at Michael Miller to bring those sketchy drawings to print.

What can readers expect to find when they visit your blog, Crazy Old Ladies Quilts? And how did you come up with that name?

My blog is totally ME. I try to write it as if I’m talking to the reader. I hope that if my readers ever meet me in person that they feel like they already know me from my blog. I post pictures of projects I’m working on, new patterns I’ve designed, tidbits of my crazy life and links to blog-land to see things I think are amazing!

So you want to know how I became a Crazy Old Lady? Well, hold on to your hat! The name came about when I started quilting. Shortly after I kicked my son out of his room to make a craft room my husband came in to see me slumped over my machine. He looked at me and shook his head “You’re going to become one of those crazy old ladies that sits around and sews all the time, aren’t’ you!?” he said. ABSOLUTELY! So naturally, when I decided to start marketing my patterns that was the name I chose. Although most people think it refers strickly to me, it’s really a stereotypical reference to all quilters. With love, of course.

We were very excited to see your new line, “Going Coastal”, at Quilt Market! How did you come upon designing fabric for Michael Miller?

The planets must’ve been aligned in my favor. I hadn’t planned on approaching Michael Miller. I was a little intimidated by some of their designers and thought they were way out of my league. However, someone suggested I go for it and I decided I better do it before I lose my nerve. I still have to pinch myself- it’s just unreal. Everyone at Michael Miller is so awesome, I can’t imagine being anywhere else.

“Going Coastal” has a distinct beach vibe. From where did you draw your inspiration for this collection? Did you grow up near the coast, or Is there a particular beach that you enjoy visiting?

I wish I could say I grew up on the beach- but it’s just not so. I did grow up in northern California about an hour from the coast but we only hit the beach once a year or so. There’s something about the beach that draws people to it. If I could live there I would. It doesn’t matter which beach. Now I live in Utah and there is no beach. But I dream of it often. Just to hear the crashing waves, the screech of the gulls, the smell of the salt in the air….Um, I think I need a vacation.

My favorite beach is near Bodega Bay in California because of all the memories of going there as a child. I also have a special place in my heart for Seal Beach in southern California because of a day trip there a few years back. But there are TONS of other beaches that I would love to visit. Anywhere on the East Coast would be amazing and of course, Florida, Hawaii, and Mexico. Maybe someday.

The inspiration came from the places I have been and all the places I would like to go. I’ve seen beach prints before and there are lots of great ones, but I wanted something…different. It sounds cheesy to say but it’s true. I wanted prints that you might actually see on the coast. Think Pottery Barn and J crew. That was the feel I was going for.

Tell us a little bit about each print in the collection.

First and foremost I knew I couldn’t do a beachy theme without plaid. I LOVE all things plaid. This one had to be just-right. I wanted a patchwork print that looks as though it’s been pieced, but it’s not. This print carries the line and gives it the feel I wanted to achieve.

The Bottle Cap was one of the first prints I drew. It has a nostalgic vibe to it that I adore.

I love to see finger starfish in décor so that had to be one of my prints.

The sand dollars are my polka dot- I love the shading and the slight flower trademark of a real sand dollar.

I HAD to draw that crab! For some reason he was just speaking to me. I lovingly nicknamed that print ‘crabby patty’ (SpongeBob anyone?)

The sea-kelp came last because as a quilter, I know that there needs to be a floral-ish print in there too. I’m so glad I added it- I can’t imagine the line without it!

What types of projects do you think would be best suited for this collection? What might be some good quilt patterns that our readers can use to really show off and complement the prints and colors?

I designed a few patterns specifically to show the prints and carry on the coastal feeling I was going for. Cabana and Beachin’ are my favorites. But I also really like Liliana because of its feminine feel.

A personal project that I want to do includes the patchwork plaid and white to make Vanessa’s Hounds-tooth quilt. *heart* http://vandco.bigcartel.com/product/houndstooth-quilt-pdf-pattern

I made a beach ball for my booth at market using the pattern at http://www.purlbee.com/fabric-beach-balls/ I didn’t have all my prints yet, so I had to use what I had. It was super fun and EASY to do.

I am hoping to make my little girl a sundress using a few of the prints too. I can see the patchwork plaid and bottle cap prints in all kinds of children’s clothing. Heck, I may even make something for me!

Aside from your collection, what are your 5 favorite fabric prints right now?

I LOVE this question! And it’s so hard to narrow down just 5.

At the top of my list right now is the complete collection of STORYBOEK by Birch fabrics. Oh my gosh- LOVE IT! I’ve got as project in works with it right now. I can’t wait! *squeal!*

Also, PRINCE CHARMING. That Tula always produces some amazing prints. I’m seeing this done with my Merry-Go-Round pattern.

I know you said prints, but you meant collections, right!? ;o)

I’m trying to remember all the lines I saw at market…..hmmm……

I’d have to say CHILDREN AT PLAY is right up there. Not just because she’s another M&M designer- I have been a fan of Sarah Jane’s work for a long time. And now, to have it in fabric! I want to sew this in my Backyard Circus pattern- I think it would bring a new life to it.

Sweetwater’s HOMETOWN is sitting on my table. I LOVE the color pallete. I am such a sucker for the more muted or subdued color palette. I don’t know what I’m making with it yet because I’m still afraid to cut it. :o ) Although, as I’m sitting here thinking, I may have to do my Postage Due pattern- those little squares- oh, I can see it.

More love for fellow M&M designer- Violet Craft’s PEACOCK LANE. Um, it has elephants in it. (I *heart* elephants) As soon as I saw that line I knew I wanted to make my Out of Time pattern (without the appliqué letters). Yum!

You know how we like to roll here at Fat Quarterly.  We have mad love for Going Coastal, and we’re all about spreading the love.  You know what that means — a chance at some free fabric for you!  Are you a beach bum?  Need a little sunshine in your life?  Simply leave a comment on this post and tell us about your favorite beach or share a fun beach memory and you’ll be entered to win this lovely stack of Going Coastal fat quarters.

Good luck!

** COMMENTS ARE NOW CLOSED.  THANKS FOR ENTERING OUR GIVEAWAY! **

Be Our Guest: Leigh Ann of Spincushion

Hello everyone! My name is Leigh Ann and I am the writer and designer behind the Spincushion blog. I’m so happy to be with you today, sharing a little about myself as well as a fun project I’m working on….  a quilt inspired by the artwork of watercolor artist Caitlin McGauley.

But more about that in a minute! First, a few fun facts about me:

1. I was a make-up artist for years, but now put pencil to paper far more often than I put liner to lip. 2. I once won a $100.00 gift certificate to JoAnn Fabrics, which my mother used to make my wedding gown! 3. I accidentally once made coffee in my iron. Long story.

I currently design sewing projects for publications such as Sew Hip and Stitch magazines and I have a pattern in the upcoming book, “One Yard Wonders: Fabric Extravaganza” due out later this year. My blog, Spincushion, is a collection of my great loves including surface design, interior decorating and modern traditional style with a focus on fabrics, quilting and sewing of all sorts. As you can tell from one visit to Spincushion, I’m a graphic design junkie and I’m very excited to have just designed the pattern covers for 3 quilts by Cara’s Quilt Designs (coming to an online quilt shop near you!).

My goal in the industry is to someday share my modern, feminine aesthetic through a line of fabrics and patterns. I’ve been sharing many an evening with my colored pencils, and as soon as my portfolio reflects the “me” that I want to share through fabrics, I plan on courting a few manufacturers.

Now back to that fun project! Lately, I’m loving the gorgeous works of artist Caitlin McGauley. Her playful yet glamourous art has attracted the likes of Kate Spade, Lonny Magazine and Tory Burch. I thought it would be fun to do a group of 12″ quilt blocks, each inspired by one of Caitlin’s works, then use white sashing to join them so that it looks somewhat  like a gallery wall in fabric form.

My goal is not to get incredibly detailed, just pick up on Caitlin’s notes on form and color, and then possibly add in some detail with hand quilting later on. I love the idea of the classic look of hand stitching on a very modern looking quilt top- kind of like reading “The Great Gatsby” on a Kindle.

So here’s how this block came to be. First I drew a plan on pattern paper outlining the main shapes. Then I did the math, adding 1/4″ seam allowance to the shape dimensions. Next, due to the angles, I created a template for the floor for easier cutting.

Then I pieced the back together and created and added bias binding to the “rug”.

And the rest is done with applique. This is the technique I usually use. First you cut a square from your desired fabric, larger than the shape that you’re going to be using. Then you trace the template (with no seam allowance) onto the fabric. Then you cut a piece of a lightweight fusible interfacing, the same size as your fabric and pin it to the back, fusible side facing the fabric. Next, using a very small seam, sew over your traced line. Trim the seam allowance to around 1/4″ and notch curves where necessary. Then cut a small hole in only the fusible and turn the piece right-side-out, smoothing out the inner seams.

Then I arranged the applique pieces and pressed them into place. Lastly, I used quilting thread and an invisible ladder stitch to secure the applique.

Thanks so much to Fat Quarterly for allowing me to share today! I hope to continue our conversation- so nice to meet you!