Introducing FROLIC and my First Knits!

Posted by on May 16, 2017 in Blog, Frolic, Quilt Market | 2 Comments

After a long spell of being busy working on other projects, I am so thrilled to let you know I have a new fabric collection making its debut at Quilt Market in St Louis later this week and shipping to stores mid-June.

Inspired by a Mexican fiesta, FROLIC is a sweet, bright and playful collection where hand-painted critters cavort in a whimsical flower garden, where multicoloured blossoms replace the spines on the back of a hedgehog, where the air is full of petals and where love abounds.

Classic blue and white mixed with touches of pinks, oranges and fresh greens for a true Spring/Summer collection that is full of life. Oh, and do you recognize the print right at the top of the blues? Yep. It’s a mini remake of Bargello from Flight Patterns, my first collection with Michael Miller that showed at Quilt Market exactly 4 years ago.

Saturated, clear colours take centre-stage with many prints on clean white grounds to add lots of fresh air to the mix.

One of the highlights of the collection is the double border print, Frolic Border that offers all kinds of sewing possibilities, from sweet dresses and skirts to pillows and certainly lots of fun fussy cutting for quilts. It also works wonderfully as a whole cloth baby quilt top or back.

Here’s a little peak at where the collection began, playing in my watercolour sketchbook. A little secret… While she resembles a fox, that’s actually our border collie, Lilou, lower right, that jumps to pick up her toy just like a fox would in the snow. And under the book, the end result, Frolicking, available in 4 luscious colour ways.

A big thrill for me with FROLIC is the inclusion of my first ever KNITS! There are 9 in total. These knits are so very soft with just the right amount of stretch (95% cotton and 5% spandex) and are a dream to sew with. Bring on the sergers! Just imagine all the cute kiddo leggings, t-shirts and dresses.

Over the next few weeks a number of wonderfully creative bloggers and friends will be sharing some fun FROLIC projects they have in the works and I will also be sharing the quilts and clothing I have sewn over the past couple of months. Hope you check in here regularly to have a peek.

Oh… And there’s a great collaborative FROLIC project with a fabulous sewing-related company I can’t wait to share with you too.
All coming in the upcoming days…

My Quilt Market Booth

Posted by on Nov 4, 2013 in Blog, Helen's Garden, Quiet Time, Quilt Market | 11 Comments

Welcome to my Quilt Market booth!

In comparison to my last booth at Quilt Market, this season’s was simpler, with a greater emphasis on the quilt. I have discovered the wisdom in some of the most rudimentary of quilters’ rules (measure ACCURATELY, press seams, obey the scant 1/4″ seam allowance, etc), and making quilts for this season was less stressful and more rewarding … I am learning.

Once again this time, I was presenting two fabric collections in one tiny space. The collections’ colours play off each other well and they met with a resoundingly positive response.

First up, I present you with Helen’s Garden:

Helen is my Mom. She keeps, and has always kept, a beautiful, inspiring garden. There is occasionally order within, but generally colour and scent abound. Her current garden includes a range of lovely blooms, as well as a forested area that wanders down to the ocean, wherein one can find berries, mushrooms, fiddleheads and other treasures. This collection is a little nod to what she has taught me.

I made some simple pillows that show off some of the collection’s prints in their two colour families. Spy some dragonflies? That’s Garden Dancers. And see those gorgeous bags, they were created by the very talented Jennifer Ladd. She makes the most lovely bags and purses and whipped up these with solid wood handles just for the show.

Here is another quilt I created, based on the traditional log cabin.

I completely lucked out this time to have my baby sister, Tanya join me for a few days. Here she is sporting a Schoolhouse Tunic  (by Sew Liberated) she made with my Pirouette fabric in coral. She had so many compliments on that tunic … she even had someone offer to buy it off her back! I am wearing a peasant-style dress of my own creation (sorry, no pattern yet available) in Enchanted in plum.

My other collection is for young girls … Quiet Time. It has two main prints, the Princess & the Pea (in lavender and robin’s egg) and the Quiet Time print of girls reading in trees.

Those two sweet small quilts you see were created by the wonderful Brooke Sellman of Silly Mama Quilts. Brooke was completely up for the challenge of making pieces to highlight the two focal prints. Stay tuned for a tutorial on each of these shortly.

The dress and short pyjamas came from my head, but I think these pj’s by Marie-Madeline Studio would be equally sweet in the Princess & the Pea fabric.

I made a modern Princess & the Pea bed out of queen-size bed pillows. The majority use Freckled in it’s many colour versions. I had grand ideas of doing a crocheted edge on each pillow, but after the third, I came to terms with the fact that a crochet hook is not my favourite tool, and opted for pompom fringe for the others. The top pillow is edged with a beaded trim I had purchased years ago, that I was happy to finally put to use. Oh, and the “pea” is a wooden ball covered with some Floating Blossoms.

I will be writing up tutorials for both of the Helen’s Garden quilts in the next while. They will be posted when the fabric becomes available in stores. December 15!

Thanks for stopping by and visiting!

Quilt Market – Fall 2014

Posted by on Nov 1, 2013 in Blog, Quilt Market | No Comments

I wanted to share with you all a quick look at a few booths and fabric lines that inspired me at Quilt Market last weekend (while my camera was co-operating, that is). Sadly, there were a few amazing sights that ended up a blurred mess on my camera, so here is an abridged look at Quilt Market through my eyes:

Anna Maria Horner did not fail to leave me in awe with her soulful new collection, Dowry and her True Colors, not-so-solid-solids.

Amy Butler’s Hapi was vibrant, layered & bohemian

I also loved her geometric prints in the line

I am far from being a cat person, but I love the focal print in Lizzie House’s new collection

Jeni Baker had a lovely vintage inspired line, Dreamin’ Vintage

Carolyn Friedlander created an entire wall of gorgeous pieced blocks

as well as a lovely quilt. Her new collection, Botanics is full of beautifully pared down fine line drawings.

My fellow-Michael Miller designer, Sarah Jane introduced her sweet new collection, Wee Wander, full of fireflies, trees and horses.

Loved this new print on organic knit by Monaluna

And a wonderfully creative booth was by Green Bee Patterns. Sometimes the simplest ideas are the most effective!

I am trying to salvage enough pictures of my own booth so that I can properly introduce you to my two new collections. That will be next.
Until then, have a fabulous weekend full of inspiration!

Going to Quilt Market

Posted by on Oct 23, 2013 in Blog, Fabric Collections, Quilt Market | 2 Comments

I am off again on Friday to Quilt Market. I have been sewing up a frenzy for the past few weeks, hence the lack of posts here. I had more time this time, and yet I still don’t feel nearly as prepared as I did in the Spring. I’m sure … well, let’s say “I hope” … it will all come together once I’m there.

Once again I will be presenting two new fabric lines. There will be a happy, colourful young girl’s line, Quiet Time and a richly coloured grownup girl’s line, Helen’s Garden. Here’s a little peek to whet your appetite …

I will give you a much more extensive look at the two lines once I am back. For now, I hope you like the bit that you see here.

If you are planning on attending Market, please do stop by and say “hi”. I will have my own booth within the Michael Miller booth area. Have a fabulous week!

My First Ever, Wee Little Quilt Market Booth

Posted by on Jun 12, 2013 in Blog, Fabric Collections, Quilt Market | 5 Comments

Yes, it was tiny! All of 5′ x 10′. Actually, that shot looks like a dollhouse. Here’s some perspective and proof I was actually there:

Not only was it little, but I had to visually divide it to show the 2 separate collections and not have it all look like a jumbled visual mess.

So, one half was for Flight Patterns. A little square quilt and a simple wooden clothes rack showcasing some girls’ dresses, a skirt for me and a shirt for my boy.

A few double sided light and airy Spring/Summer scarves.

My comfy mod chair (there were many moments I was so happy to have this).

And a little friend that came along to keep me company.

And the other half was Les Monsieurs. Greg built the great display boxes for me. Well, truth be told, he built everything in the booth & the booth itself.

I wanted to show the inspiration for the line, so I brought along Max’s toys after much negotiation.

It being a quilt show, I wanted to actually quilt something for each collection, so I made a sleeping bag with built-in pillow for Max.

And a checker board to follow through on the theme of young, playful spirit.

I covered some handmade (yes, by Greg) cardboard suitcases with fabric. These were a hit!

And I made a gazillion bowties. Almost 30 in total.

And no, that is not a giant bib, as someone suggested. It is the superhero cape from the Les Monsieurs brochure cover.

I don’t think I could have effectively squeezed much more in there.

I will do some follow-up posts in the coming months with tutorials for some of the projects herein. Hope you’ve enjoyed the tour.

“Les Monsieurs” Have Arrived

Posted by on Jun 3, 2013 in Blog, Fabric Collections, Quilt Market | 4 Comments

And my second collection that was shown at Quilt Market … Les Monsieurs

Today, I’m calling all boys … Gentlemen, start your engines!

A fun, youthful collection that is about doing what most boys love … racing, building and pretending to be like Dad.

Available in 3 versatile colourways. Here is Aviator (a bit earthy, but still vibrant) in some fun pillows for the young Monsieur to have fun with:

Because my boy loves getting dressed up, I made lots and lots of bowties and belts, shown here in the fun, multicoloured Soft Top:

And then there are the beautiful bright and deep blues, with hits of aqua and acid green, of Retro:

The collection was inspired by the beautiful toys Greg has been regularly making for our Max since he was born. Here are just a few.

As well as our son’s imaginings of being a race car driver, astronaut or airplane pilot. I wanted to try to bring his imagination-world to life for him on fabric.

To see all the prints available, you can view and download the official brochure here.

The fabrics will start shipping to many a lovely store worldwide in July. If you are a retailer and are interested in ordering, please check the Michael Miller website.

Quilt Market Spring 2013

Posted by on May 28, 2013 in Blog, Quilt Market | No Comments

I have been overwhelmed with a mountain of work since getting back home. But finally I have sorted through images.

So, go grab yourself a cup (or glass) of whatever you may enjoy drinking while you relax, sit back and enjoy the visual feast of Quilt Market as I saw it.

First up, the non-printed fabric booths that wowed me, starting with Alyssa Thomas’ Penguin & Fish. The cutest embroidery kits & patterns. Ok, she also had a lovely co-ordinating line of fabric come out with Clothworks at the show that you can see a bit of in the 1st photo … but those kits!

And then there was SkipStone Creations. Sewing kits & patterns for some sweet soft stuff.

Heather Bailey’s booth was so beautiful! A whole wall that she embroidered during booth setup. She wasn’t showing fabric, but her embroidery kits. She very fittingly won for Best Creative Booth.

I had seen the odd online photo of products by Renaissance Ribbons, but was amazed at the detail they are able to achieve in their woven ribbons.

And the fabric … I will start with the designers who I didn’t know anything or very much about, but who made a big impression on me, and will work my way up to the superstars (who are superstars for a reason). First up, Mo Bedell who had her 1st collection with Andover, Full Moon Lagoon. So pretty, so colourful. And Mo was one of those people who was so lovely to meet. Oh, and she won the booth award for Best New Exhibitor.

One of my fellow Michael Miller designers, Violet Craft had a fantastic line, Waterfront Park, inspired by Portland. Loved the 2 colour ways she created.

Leah Duncan’s booth was quite stunning with her arresting navy wall and living room-ish display

Rashida Coleman Hale showed off her Koi collection with this little girl’s kimono and a pair of fabulous Japanese geta sandals, among other things.

Tula Pink had a BIG butterfly quilt that totally intimidated me. The quilting was so far beyond what I could ever have imagined. She was showing her new collection, Acacia.

Monaluna showed both their new line of fabrics and their new venture into sewing patterns. A gentle, calming booth to be around. Love that dotted dress with fox apron!

Amy Butler re-released her Belle collection in a new colour way. So pretty.

Anna Maria Horner showed this simple chevron quilt that completely drew me in to its rich dreamy patterns from her Field Study collection.

And a fabulously creative booth by a fabric company for me was Art Gallery Fabrics. Line drawings of boutique windows showcasing a patchwork gown, a quilt and a stack of pillows. All so very artfully done. Sorry about the lack of great photos here. I was working around all the heads in the booth.

And then they had a small booth presenting their line of solids, Pure, that was quite magical with 2 whole walls of these colourful butterflies.

Told ya you’d need a drink & comfy chair. It took me 3 days of running off whenever there was a lull, and I still didn’t have time to see it all properly.

So happy I went!

Next up, my own wee little booth.

“Flight Patterns” Has Touched Down

Posted by on May 21, 2013 in Blog, Fabric Collections, Quilt Market | 7 Comments

So Quilt Market has come and gone and my 2 inaugural fabric lines have launched.

With great delight, I can finally present to you, Flight Patterns.

A collection that is all about the dream of the end of Winter. Colour, fresh air, light breezes and nature coming to life … all from a decidedly feminine point of view. While designing this line I had visions of the way bright, dappled sunlight comes through leaves of trees, hitting you right in the eye; of lazy Summer days lying on one’s back on the grass, watching friendly insects floating about overhead; of happy carefree moments, where nothing else is a priority but the beauty we see around us; and definitely of the magic that is nature, the incredible detail and symmetry in a butterfly’s wings, migration patterns and such.

It is printed on Michael Miller Fabric’s gorgeously soft Cotton Couture base cloth. That means it is an heirloom quality cotton that has a luxurious silky hand, it drapes beautifully for garment making and it is a dream to piece or quilt with. And because of the range of colours I included in so many of the prints, if you are in need of a solid to work with them, it co-ordinates wonderfully with a high percentage of their vast range of Cotton Couture solids.

This collection was a departure stylistically for me. I have found a certain comfort level with computer graphics, but here I went back to my watercolour and pen and ink roots. It was a thrill for me to design this line and to have it come together as it did. I truly hope you find some inspiration herein to create something of your own that gives you the same sense of happiness and delight I have when I look at the collection.

You can see the full pdf downloadable brochure here.

The Cat’s Out of the Bag

Posted by on May 20, 2013 in Blog, Quilt Market | 3 Comments

I am just back from the whirlwind that was the International Quilt Market, and so I can finally tell you that I am happy as a butterfly in Summer to be a member of the wonderful Michael Miller Fabrics family. To be under contract to design for a company that is full of warm happy people who truly love what they do, have fun while they do it, and are there every step of the way to help each other out with whatever might be thrown into the daily pot of producing beautiful fabric, is a dream come true.

Their booth at Quilt Market is apparently always a must see. This season was no exception with a full size swan paddle boat plunked in the middle of it, just for the joy of giving people a laugh & great photo op. Here are a few of my fellow designers, Violet Craft and Patty Young taking a mid-afternoon break.

And in fitting fashion, the booth won the award for best multiple booths.

Being completely new to the industry meant 3 days of meeting buyers, distributers, manufacturers, sales reps, media, other designers … the list goes on. There was a steep learning curve to understanding how it all works, and where everyone fits into the equation and I tried to take every opportunity to ask every question that popped into my head so I could better understand it all.

The wealth of talent in the community is humbling, to say the least. Over the next few days I will give you a peek into just a fraction of what impressed me, that I was able to keep my wits about me and catch on camera.

I am thrilled that I made the decision to go. And at the same time, I am so happy to be back home with my family. I celebrated by making creme caramel for dessert tonight.

The 3rd Dimension

Posted by on Apr 18, 2013 in Blog, Quilt Market | 6 Comments

I have taken the plunge and decided to participate in this Spring’s Quilt Market! I am therefor stressing myself much more than any logical person would or should as to what to make for my wee little 5 x 10 ft booth. I have to show two very different collections in this tiny space. And to complicate matters, I will not have any fabric until some time next week. Then I have to sew like crazy in order to ship everything to get all the way from Montreal to Portland, OR by May 15th. I thought writing about it might help take away the tension I am feeling.

Oh yeah … and I have to photograph finished items to include in a brochure I am designing that has to be printed the end of April. THE END OF APRIL!

I tend to think 2-dimensionally. I see the surface of things very clearly, but struggle more with imagining the 3rd dimension. I can’t tell you how many times Greg has asked me if I’d like furniture positioned a certain way & I have to ask him to move it for me to see, so that I can make a decision. I’m obviously lacking in 3-D imagination. So trying to visualize a booth space … well, there’s half a dismantled room in our home as a result with tape lines on the floor and walls. This helps with the spacial concerns. But my 3-D limitations exist also in envisioning the items I will include in said booth. It is a quilt market after all, so I will have to have a quilt or 2 (not looking forward to taking care of that part, but I’m up for the challenge). Then I would also like some clothing, perhaps an upholstered piece of furniture, some cushions, some fun playful items, etc. And we must not forget giving the whole thing context. Sure I can just throw a bunch of items into a booth, but in my mind, it would be much more effective if there is some sort of a theme or feel to it all. Think of the gorgeous Amy Butler booths:

So I have worked out the ambiance. Young, playful and Summery (fingers crossed it comes across as I imagine). Now to decide on actual items to sew. I think sewing children’s items is a good solution, as they should take less time and be easier structurally. I would like to make myself a few items as well that I could actually wear in the booth (This is probably important to avoid giving the impression that I see the fabrics as purely for a young market). I’m torn between making things easy on myself and going with simple forms vs. trying to create really special items. I guess I have to keep in mind the importance of the fabrics in all this, and not get carried away with elaborate ideas. Simple can be highly effective, right? Right!

I am making lists. Trying to be methodical and plan, plan, plan. Deep breath.

I will travel with camera in hand so that I can share the results with you.