Island Batik Week: Captain’s Anchor by Cheri Good Designs

Here we are at day 3 of Island Batik Week!! We love having this opportunity to showcase and celebrate the vibrant colors of Island Batik’s Spring/Summer releases. We absolutely adore working with this wonderful company and have so much respect for its designers. We’ll be featuring one designer every day this week and each post will offer a fabric + thread giveaway, so make sure to come back daily to learn more and to enter-to-win some gorgeous prizes!

To learn about Island Batik and the batik process, please visit their website. For a peek at the full range of Spring/Summer 2017 releases, in-stores now, click here or on the image below to browse the catalog.

ISLAND BATIK WEEK SCHEDULE
August 21 – Jackie Kunkel on Auribuzz (Jackie’s PostIsland Batik’s Post)
August 22 – Tammy Silvers on Auribuzz (Island Batik’s Post)
August 23 – Cheri Good Designs (Island Batik’s Post)
August 24 – Nan Baker
August 25 – Ebony Love


Captain’s Anchor is the latest collection by Kathy Engle for Cheri Good Designs. The talented design team (Cheri Maniz and Audrey Good) was drawn to the nautical theme — featuring anchors, lobsters, ropes,  starfish, and more. The rich golden hues partnered perfectly with the deep blues, peppered with hits of a bold red. Cheri and Audrey brought the collection to life with a series of stunning patterns, punctuated by wave-like quilting and picture perfect applique.

While we don’t have a curated collection for Captain’s Anchor, Cheri and Audrey were kind enough to select 3 colors of our 50wt and 3 of our 80wt to coordinate. They love 50wt for piecing and quilting and favor the 80wt for applique. Colors are (L to R): 2783, 2930, 2140, 2372, 2026, 2785.

THE INTERVIEW
How did you first get involved with Island Batik?
Audrey: About seven years ago, we were at Market and stop to talk with the owner of Island Batik about our business and that we were interested in designing for their fabrics. Since then, the ownership has changed and the company has grown and we have grown right along with them.

Cheri: We introduced ourselves at Quilt Market and they loved our projects from the beginning. They are wonderful to work with and we have so enjoyed growing our business along with theirs. They have given us new opportunities each year and we are so fortunate to be able to work with Caleb, Katie, Elizabeth and Kathy.

Squares and Stripes by Cheri Good Designs

What do you love most about Batik fabrics?
Audrey: When we first started, precuts were just emerging and several of our local shops were anxious to have patterns for precuts, so we created designs using precuts. Well, fabric lines move off the market pretty fast and we found that to be a problem when someone wanted a fabric line we used in our pattern and for a sample quilt on the cover, so we found ourselves moving to batiks. Using batiks other than those featured in a pattern increased the life of the pattern! Now, we love, love, love, batiks! Just the vibrant colors and exciting textures and prints give me inspiration!

Cheri: Batik fabric, especially Island Batiks’ fabrics, are first quality, imaginative, and give no limits to what creative process we might come up with. Quilters can look at our patterns shown in batik fabrics and imagine them in different colorways. Batik fabric lovers are a breed of their own!!

By The Sea by Cheri Good Designs

What do you love most about Captain’s Anchor?
We love the nautical theme of the line. The many anchor prints, the lobster images, the bold rope prints, and the rich coordinated textural prints were all very inspiring to our designs. Also inspirational was the subtle color palette in this line, a contrast from our last line “Glowing Embers”, which “glowed” with a bright, rich colors.

What do the colors mean to you?
We really don’t have color favorites. Sometimes the combinations of colors is attractive, while other times colors produce feelings and emotional responses which spark design. We also find unexpected color combinations a design challenge. It is fun to allow color and texture lead the design process.

Tides by Cheri Good Designs

Do you have a favorite project created with the fabrics?
Sailing, Sailing is a favorite. The simplicity of the design really showcases the fabrics, textures and nautical theme. While we are traditional appliqué advocates, this pattern includes instructions for fused appliqués too. We love the Aurifil 80 weight thread for the traditional appliqués! We hope that it encourages quilters who have not tried this technique to have more satisfying results because it handles so beautifully. A truly welcome addition to our design tools.

Sailing, Sailing by Cheri Good Designs

The Captain’s Mate Apron and Kitchen Mittens were such fun designs. A beachy clambake was the inspiration and the lobster print and coordinates were a perfect fit for this project.

What is coming up next for you, where can we find you this year?
In the fall we will have a new line, Season’s Shades with Island Batik. Four new designs will accompany the line which will debut in Houston. We love working with Island Batiks beautiful fabrics and find that they speak to all kinds of quilting styles, modern or traditional. Our website: cherigoodquiltdesign.com has a catalog of all of our designs including the Captain’s Anchor patterns and in the fall will list our new ones for the Season’s Shades line.

FUN LINKS
Captain’s Anchor
About the patterns
Glowing Embers by Cheri Good Designs

THE GIVEAWAY

To enter-to-win 3 Large Spools of Aurifil 50wt thread + 3 Small Spools of Aurifil 80wt thread in in colors hand-picked by Audrey and Cheri to coordinate with their fabric collection AND one stack of Captain’s Anchor fabrics from Island Batik, click here to head to the Rafflecopter entry page, or simply click on the image above. You do not have to complete all the options to be entered but the more options you choose, the more entries you have!  Entries will be accepted from now through 11:59pm Eastern Time on Thursday, August 31! Winner will be randomly selected and announced here on Friday, September 1. Good luck!

ABOUT AUDREY & CHERI of CHERI GOOD DESIGNS
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Cheri Maniz
cherimanizCheri and her husband moved to Arizona in 1996.  It was there that she discovered her passion for quilting which has added joy, friendships, and fun to her life.  As soon as she found Charm Packs and Jelly Rolls by Moda, her imagination went wild and her sewing machine hasn’t stopped yet.  From experience as a quilting instructor, she found that beginners want patterns that will make easy and successful quilts using the latest fun fabrics.  Charm Packs and Jelly Rolls are the perfect answer giving them a coordinated group of fabrics that are already cut.

Audrey Good
audreygoodLifelong Pennsylvanians, Audrey and her husband moved to Arizona in 2000, to be closer to their son.  Prior to that, Audrey worked for 36 years as a public school teacher of visual arts and performing arts in the Pittsburgh area.  For a number of years before retirement, she also managed a community cultural program that presented and produced cultural venues.  Sewing has always been a part of her personal and professional life.  For more than 15 years, in her school performing arts program as well as in local professional theater, she designed and built costumes for a variety of productions.  Quilting was introduced as a child by Audrey’s mother who sewed everything, including quilts.  Later, her love of quilting was rekindled when she produced the musical “Quilters”.  This regional theater production, not only involved costume design, but a community charity quilt project to make the more than sixteen quilts needed for the show.  Now retired, Audrey pursues her passions, which include pottery and painting, as well as quilting, full time.

ABOUT ISLAND BATIK
Website — Blog — Facebook — Pinterest — Twitter — Instagram
Island Batik is a manufacturer, importer and distributor of cotton batik, rayon batik and hand-printed cotton from Indonesia. Originally established in 1997, Island Batik’s mission is to share the ancient cultural art of batik and hand-dyed fabric with our many valued customers around the world.

** Images courtesy of Island Batik **

Island Batik Week: Batiks Go Retro by Tammy Silvers

Welcome to day 2 of Island Batik Week!! In this final month of Summer, we are celebrating the vibrant colors of Island Batik’s Spring/Summer releases. We absolutely adore working with this wonderful company and have so much respect for its designers. We’ll be featuring one designer every day this week and each post will offer a fabric + thread giveaway, so make sure to come back daily to learn more and to enter-to-win some gorgeous prizes!

To learn about Island Batik and the batik process, please visit their website. For a peek at the full range of Spring/Summer 2017 releases, in-stores now, click here or on the image below to browse the catalog.

ISLAND BATIK WEEK SCHEDULE
August 21 – Jackie Kunkel on Auribuzz (Jackie’s PostIsland Batik’s Post)
August 22 – Tammy Silvers (Island Batik’s Post)
August 23 – Cheri Good Designs
August 24 – Nan Baker
August 25 – Ebony Love


Batiks Go Retro is by Tammy Silvers of Tamaranis. This is Tammy’s first solo collection with Island Batik and we are completely enamored with how the colors are perfectly accented by the subtle retro patterns. The collection was inspired by atomic images of the 1950s. Those awesome shapes carried promise of space travel and future technology, the spirit of possibility and the sense of fun. In the collection, you’ll find little atomic TVs, the iconic wedges, free-wheeling flowers, and the sunburst that was practically a required decorating element in every home at that time.

While we don’t have a curated collection for Batiks Go Retro, we were thrilled to see that the colors line up well with Tammy’s Coastal Mist collection. Tammy was also kind enough to recommend 6 stunning spools of our 50wt thread.

THE INTERVIEW
How did you first get involved with Island Batik? 
Oh, another tough one.  I don’t remember the first initial contact, but I’ve been creating projects for Island Batik for years and years and (cough) years.  It has always been a wonderful experience, whether creating projects for publications, or for my own pattern line.  I mean, who wouldn’t love working with all those luscious fabrics? Any project looks awesome in their batiks!

Atomic Bombshell by Tammy Silvers of Tamarinis

What do you love most about Batik fabrics?
I love so many things about batiks – the saturation of color, even in the soft pastels (yes, I do use pastels – sometimes!).  I love the high thread count of batiks, which means your piecing is true because the fabric isn’t stretching out of shape.  I love that there usually isn’t a wrong or a right side – which makes cutting and piecing so much easier.  I love the range of colors and motifs.  I guess you can tell – I love batiks in general, and they truly are my “go to” fabrics of choice.

What do you love most about Batiks Go Retro? 
Argh – I can’t pick just one thing.  I love the fun motifs (she says modestly), and the wonderful range of color the collection has.  Everything from soft pastels to some wonderfully vibrant ode-to-the 50s brights – acid greens, sun washed turquoise, juicy orange.

Jangle by Tammy Silvers of Tamarinis

What inspired the line? 
I’ve always loved the clean lines of atomic design AND I grew up watching the Jetsons.  Didn’t we all dream of a robot maid and flying cars?  Those fond memories, combined with the distinctive shapes from the late 50s and early 60s, lead to Batiks Go Retro.

Do you have a favorite project created with the fabrics? 
Hmm….again, difficult to pick favorites.  I would say my two favorites are Atomic Bombshell, which is a fun, surprisingly quick to paper piece quilt that really plays on the atomic bursts and sharp points of the time period.  And then Wedge-O-Matic takes the wedge shape to new levels.

Wedge-O-Metic by Tammy Silvers of Tamarinis

What is coming up next for you, where can we find you this year?
I’m thrilled to be introducing my next line with Island Batik this fall – Elementz, a graphic interpretation of the earth’s elements in shape and color.  And I’m honored that several projects in Batiks Go Retro and in Elementz will be featured in different publications, including McCalls, American Patchwork and Quilting and Fons and Porter.

FUN LINKS
Tammy’s Launch Post
Batiks Go Retro
Seashore by Tammy Silvers
Coastal Mist by Tammy Silvers

BLOG HOP
The Batiks Go Retro Blog Hop kicks off of on September 17. Keep an eye on Tammy’s blog for more info!

THE GIVEAWAY

To enter-to-win 6 Large Spools of Aurifil 50wt thread in Tammy’s coordinating colors + one stack of Batiks Go Retro fabrics from Island Batik + 3 patterns by Tammy Silvers for Tamarinis, click here to head to the Rafflecopter entry page, or simply click on the image above. You do not have to complete all the options to be entered but the more options you choose, the more entries you have!  Entries will be accepted from now through 11:59pm Eastern Time on Thursday, August 31! Winner will be randomly selected and announced here on Friday, September 1. Good luck!

ABOUT TAMMY
BlogFacebookPinterestTwitterInstagram
Unknown-3Tammy Silvers is the designer behind the brand Tamarinis. She’s been designing quilts for 10 years, and prides herself on offering bold, fresh new patterns for quilters of all levels. She enjoys working with almost any fabric, but her favorites (the one that makes her drool and blow a carefully constructed budget) are batiks, bold prints, and chicken prints. Having a background in art and literature, another of her guilty quilty pleasures is finding ways to use “words” in her work, be it in the fabric itself or by adding them to the piece.

Tammy is a Georgia native and currently lives in Acworth with her husband, children (when they come to visit!), dog, and her favorite fat cats.

Under the label Tamarinis, her designs are regularly published in a variety of quilt magazines, including Quilt, McCall’s Quilting, American Patchwork and Quilting, Stitch, Fons and Porter’s Love of Quilting, Quilty, Quilt It…Today, Sew It…Today, Stitch and Create and Decorate. She also works with some of the major fabric manufacturers designing projects to showcase and promote their fabric lines, including Island Batik (of course!), Northcott Fabrics, Blend, Camelot and Fabri-Quilt.

ABOUT ISLAND BATIK
Website — Blog — Facebook — Pinterest — Twitter — Instagram
Island Batik is a manufacturer, importer and distributor of cotton batik, rayon batik and hand-printed cotton from Indonesia. Originally established in 1997, Island Batik’s mission is to share the ancient cultural art of batik and hand-dyed fabric with our many valued customers around the world.

** Images courtesy of Island Batik and Tammy Silvers **

Island Batik Week: Fresh Pick’ins by Jackie Kunkel

Welcome to Island Batik Week!! In this final month of Summer, we are celebrating the vibrant colors of Island Batik’s Spring/Summer releases. We absolutely adore working with this wonderful company and have so much respect for its designers. We’ll be featuring one designer every day this week and each post will offer a fabric + thread giveaway, so make sure to come back daily to learn more and to enter-to-win some gorgeous prizes!

To learn about Island Batik and the batik process, please visit their website. For a peek at the full range of Spring/Summer 2017 releases, in-stores now, click here or on the image below to browse the catalog.

ISLAND BATIK WEEK SCHEDULE
August 21 – Jackie Kunkel (Jackie’s PostIsland Batik’s Post)
August 22 – Tammy Silvers
August 23 – Cheri Good Designs
August 24 – Nan Baker
August 25 – Ebony Love

 


Fresh Pick’ins is a new collection by Kathy Engle for Jackie Kunkel of Canton Village Quilt Works. This bright, cheerful collection features fruity, citrus designs in yellows, pinks, oranges, and greens. A bright dash of blue is a surprising and stunning accent. Jackie brought the collection to life with a series of show-stoppingly gorgeous quilts constructed of the top-quality batik fabrics + Aurifil 50wt thread. Her coordinating thread collection features 12 Large Spools of perfectly bright colors.

THREAD COLLECTION DETAILS
Fresh Pick’ins
12 Large Spools, 50wt (1422yds/spool), 100% Aurifil Cotton
3660 – 3320 – 4658 – 4659 – 2440 – 2430
5017 – 2870 – 1133 – 1104 – 1135 – 2132

To view this info on our website, click the image above. For purchasing, please contact your local Aurifil Dealer.

THE INTERVIEW
What first drew you to to the world of sewing and quilting?
I was first drawn into sewing in my 6th grade Home Economics class. Learning to sew a simple patchwork pillow and onto more intricate garment making is how I first began. Fast forward to 1993, I took my first formal quilting class and really didn’t like it. So I took a second and fell in LOVE! It was all over at that point, the quilting but had bit me and it became a hobby, and then a business… but still remains a hobby.

Clamshell by Jackie Kunkel/Canton Village Quilt Works

Who or what has been your greatest creative inspiration?
Now that is a tough question…. I really get inspiration from all over. As far a “what”, I would have to say nature or the environment that surrounds me. I am always looking at things with a different “eye” so to speak. As far as a “who” I would have to say that Judy Niemeyer. I have been following her since the late 1990s and had always admired her designs. Since then I became a Certified Instructor for her.

Tarnished Windmill by Judy Niemeyer, Quiltworx

How did you first get involved with Island Batik?
Well….. I have been using Island Batik fabrics for quite a while, but my first “official” design for Island Batik was launched 2015.  It was my pattern “Who’s Got The Button?”.  After that Island Batik and I met at Fall Quilt Market 2015 and they asked if I would like to come aboard as a designer.  The timing was right and it has progressed from there.

Crystals by by Jackie Kunkel/Canton Village Quilt Works

What do you love most about Batik fabrics?
What is not to love?? Batiks are timeless, they don’t go in and out of style.  They are not trendy, they mix and play well with other fabrics, they are versatile, and so much more.  Each one has such variation in color and can give you a look that no other type of fabric can do. All quilters need to have batiks as part of their stash!!!

Squared Up Bed Runner by Jackie Kunkel/Canton Village Quilt Works

Tell us about Fresh Pick’ins. What inspired the designs?
This collection is a Signature Collection designed for me by Kathy Engle. When I selected the collection, I was drawn to the freshness of the colors, and the fruit designs. It reminded me of a Spring/Summer day! The colors are such happy colors, when you look at them you can just help but smile.

Tuffet by Tuffet Source

Do you have a favorite project or projects made with the collection?
Actually I do! I adore all of them… but my hands down faves are Springtime Desert and Geometrics! They are a great representation of this collection!

Geometrics by Jackie Kunkel/Canton Village Quilt Works

When did you first discover Aurifil threads and what do you love most about them?
I know it was a while ago, but I can’t pinpoint the date. Back in 2013, I was an Aurifil Block of the Month Designer and I know it was way before that. What I love most about them is all the colors offered, and different weights of threads too! The variety is phenomenal. I also love that they are low lint too!

Springtime Desert by Jackie Kunkel/Canton Village Quilt Works

How did you go about selecting colors for Fresh Pick’ins and what excites you most about releasing the collection to the world?
Well… I wanted the thread colors to compliment and coordinate with all the yummy colors in the collection. I also wanted to use some variegated threads too! The ones that I chose are subtle but do the exactly what I hoped they would do. They accent, complement, and coordinate with every one of the fabrics that are in Fresh Pick’ins!

 

 

FUN LINKS
Fresh Pick’ins
Fresh Catch by Jackie Kunkel

THE GIVEAWAY

To enter-to-win 1 Large Fresh Pick’ins Thread Collection, one Fat Quarter Bundle of Fresh Pick’ins fabrics from Island Batik, and one set of 5 new patterns from Jackie Kunkel & Canton Village Quilt Works click here to head to the Rafflecopter entry page, or simply click on the image above. You do not have to complete all the options to be entered but the more options you choose, the more entries you have!  Entries will be accepted from now through 11:59pm Eastern Time on Thursday, August 31! Winner will be randomly selected and announced here on Friday, September 1. Good luck!

ABOUT JACKIE
WebsiteBlogFacebookPinterestYouTubeFlickrInstagram 
head-shotJackie has been a quilter since 1993 and has owned her own business, Canton Village Quilt Works since 2000. Beginning her business as a long arm quilter and then in 2009 adding an online quilt fabric shop! She has also been a quilt designer for magazines and fabric companies since 2009, a quilting Podcaster – Jackie‘s Quilting Chronicles, and a Certified Quiltworx.com (Judy Niemeyer) instructor and shop. Jackie travels throughout the country to lecture, do workshops and trunk shows. Jackie‘s first book was published in September 2015 by Martingale & Co-titled Splash of Color: A Rainbow of Brilliant Black and White Quilts. Jackie is also a Craftsy Instructor with two online classes, one is a Quiltworx exclusive and the other is her own!  Also, Jackie has her own line of published patterns in 2015, there are now 9 in the series with more to come!  This year will also mark a new beginning for Jackie as she moves to Arizona and begins designing fabric for Island Batik as well as the patterns that will go with the fabric!!!  

ABOUT ISLAND BATIK
Website — Blog — Facebook — Pinterest — Twitter — Instagram
Island Batik is a manufacturer, importer and distributor of cotton batik, rayon batik and hand-printed cotton from Indonesia. Originally established in 1997, Island Batik’s mission is to share the ancient cultural art of batik and hand-dyed fabric with our many valued customers around the world.

** Images courtesy of Island Batik and Jackie Kunkel **

Sherbet Dip by Jo Avery

Jo Avery of My Bear Paw has long been a designer who we’ve followed closely on social media, awaiting her next beautifully staged photo, or her next stunning quilt finish. We adore her style and admire her knack for combining vibrant colors. Sherbet Dip is her debut collection for Aurifil and it includes her favorite shades for piecing and quilting, all in 50wt, alongside some lovely variegated threads that she tends to use in her free motion quilting. Though she does use a wide range of colors, the collection is really a representation of her signature color palette.

Jo Avery Showcasing her debut Aurifil collection at Festival of Quilts 2017

THREAD COLLECTION DETAILS
Sherbet Dip
100% Aurifil Cotton, 12 Large Spools, 50wt (1422yds/spool)
Colors included:
2535 – 2545 – 5017 – 4093 – 6729 – 5015
6725 – 5006 – 4670 – 3320 – 4654 – 3660

To view this info on our website, click here. For purchasing, please contact your local Aurifil Dealer.

THE INTERVIEW
What first drew you to to the world of sewing and quilting?

My big sister taught me to sew when I was six years old and I spent a lot of my childhood making toys. She also taught me to EPP hexies and when I was in my early twenties with a home of my own I started making them again and this became a quilt top. I joined a local quilting group and they taught me how to quilt it and introduced me to the whole world of rotary cutters and strip piecing. I haven’t stopped quilting since!

Who or what has been your greatest creative inspiration?
This is a hard one as I feel I have been influenced by so many amazing quilters and artists. However the person who really opened my eyes to the creative possibilities of quilting was Nancy Crow. I attended a lecture by her at the V&A in London in the mid 1990’s and her work totally blew me away. I think she was so ahead of her time and I am always trying to bring her to the attention of the younger Modern Quilters.

What is your favorite thing to make?
This changes day to day as I have a low boredom threshold! I love making a full-sized quilt, it is very satisfying to finish a large project. I’m not one of those people who puts off the binding stage, I always feel that binding locks in all the quilty goodness so I bind as soon as I’ve finished the quilting. At the moment I am addicted to making zippy pouches, I make at least one with the scraps from each finished quilt.

Do you have a go-to technique?
I do like to switch about and try something different with each project but I am always drawn back to needle- turn applique which I find aesthetically pleasing and very soothing to work on. I like to find ways to combine it with other techniques, and am always refining my hand sewing skills. One thing I love about quilting is that you never stop learning and improving, it is a lifelong journey.

When did you first discover Aurifil threads and what do you love most about them?
I was given a sample at the first Fat Quarterly Retreat in London five years ago. I remember the first time I used it for hand sewing, the thread just glided through the fabric, it felt completely different to the other threads I’d used. I started using it for machine piecing and quilting soon after. As it’s so fine you can get much more thread on to a bobbin than you can other brands which means less changing, perfect for FMQ.

How did you go about selecting colors for Sherbet Dip and what excites you most about releasing the collection to the world?
It was a very easy job for me as I love choosing colours! I had some favourite Aurifil shades that had to be included and I knew I wanted some variegated threads as I love to use these for FMQ. I also tried to make the selection representative of my signature colours. I hope this box inspires others to use more colour in their quilts and be braver with their choices, or just to feel happy when they look inside it!

Tendrils technique sample

THE THREAD HOUSE
Jo Avery joined forces with fellow UK quilt designers Lynne Goldsworthy and Karen Lewis to launch a new Retreat and Pattern company in 2016,
The Thread House. They hosted their first retreat in January of this year with a second planned for January 2018. Nine exclusive patterns are currently available — 3 from each designer. Jo’s patterns are the Starlights Quilt, the Crockery Cupboard Quilt, and Conker Quilts (also the thread collection cover quilt!) and all three are available for purchase here on payhip.

GIVEAWAY

To enter-to-win Jo’s Sherbet Dip thread collection AND a digital copy of each of Jo’s 3 patterns for Thread House: Conkers, Crockery Cupboard, and Starlights, click here to head to the Rafflecopter entry page, or simply click on the image above. You do not have to complete all the options to be entered but the more options you choose, the more entries you have!  Entries will be accepted from now through 11:59pm Eastern Time on Saturday, August 26! Winner will be randomly selected and announced here on Sunday, August 27. Good luck!


ABOUT JO
Website — FacebookInstagramThe Thread House

Jo Avery has been playing with fabric and yarn for as long as she can remember, culminating in her current role as a designer, teacher and entrepreneur. Her natural affinity with expressive colour informs all her quilts and her love of intricate techniques such as needle-turn appliqué and embroidery adds further levels of rich detailing, and allows her to embrace both modern and traditional aesthetics. Jo enjoys inspiring others to discover their own creative potential through her workshops and retreats.

** Images, biographical text and interview text by Jo Avery

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Free Tutorial: Project Zippy Pouch

We are of the firm belief that there is nothing better to organize your life than a good ol’ zippy pouch. They are so super handy, easily customizable, portable, and endlessly cute. They are also a terrific example of a wonderful way to use Aurifil thread in something other than a quilt!

Our Technical Creative Specialist, Kristi McDonough (also of Schnitzel & Boo), recently had to stitch this adorable zippy up and she has been kind enough to share a simple tutorial. We’ll first offer a up a HUGE thank you and then we’ll hand the reigns over to Kristi for all the details. Take it away, Kristi!


This Project Pouch is a fast and fun way to use some of your favorite fabrics, even if you only have a small piece. In fact, you can use four different feature fabrics! It’s also a perfect way to experiment with Aurifil‘s different thread weights. While I’ve referenced the exact threads used below, feel free to use whatever weight thread you have on hand.

PROJECT ZIPPY POUCH
by Kristi McDonough

Supplies:
— 1 Fat Quarter Main Fabric
— 1 Fat Quarter Accent Fabric
— 1/3 yard Cotton Canvas/Duck Cloth
— 1/3 – 1/2 yard Lining Fabric (depending on direction of print)
— Batting Scraps
— 1/2 yard Medium to Heavy Weight Fusible Interfacing
— 28wt, 50wt and Wool Aurifil Thread
— 14”-18” zipper
— Sewing machine, iron, cutting mat, acrylic ruler, rotary cutter and other preferred supplies

*Seam allowance is ½” unless otherwise noted. Construction of pouch will be with Aurifil 50wt thread unless otherwise specified

Cutting Instructions:
— Cut one 13” (wide) x 9” (tall) rectangle each of Main Fabric, Accent Fabric, and Interfacing for Pouch Front/Back (Keep direction of print in mind when cutting fabric!)
— Cut one 8” x 14” rectangle from Accent Fabric for zipper tab
— Cut two 14-½”x 12-½” rectangles of lining fabric
— Cut two 6-½” x 12-½” rectangles from canvas and interfacing for pouch bottom
— Cut two 14” x 10” rectangles of batting

*To use 4 of your favorite fabrics,  cut four 6-½”(w) x 9”(t) pieces, then continue sewing as directed.

Directions:
1. Fuse Interfacing to wrong sides of both pieces of Pouch Front/Back; cut in half to measure 6-½”(w) x 9”(t).

2. Fuse Interfacing to wrong side of Canvas; set aside.

3. Fold Zipper Tab fabric in half lengthwise, with wrong sides together and press. Open this piece up, fold the raw edges in to meet the center fold; press. Refold the entire piece along the center fold and press again. Fold and press one short end to the inside 1”. Re-press original folds as necessary; set aside.

4. With right sides together, stitch one Main piece to one Accent piece along the 9” length; repeat for the other two pieces, making sure to stitch along the same side for both sets. Press seams open.

5. Place wrong side of Pouch Front/Back on the batting; quilt as desired using Aurifil 28wt thread.

6. With right sides together, align canvas to bottom of Pouch Front/Back; stitch. Press seam towards canvas; topstitch using Aurifil Wool thread (use 50wt in the bobbin.)

7. Place Pouch Front/Back right side up. Lay zipper face down along the top of the pouch; pin in place keeping the last 2”-3” free. Place a lining piece, wrong side up, along the pinned zipper edge; repin all layers together, making sure to keep the last few inches of the zipper free, but pinning the lining to the pouch.

8. Using a zipper foot, stitch zipper in place. Hold the zipper free of the stitch line when you get to the unpinned zipper section, but keep sewing!

9. Press pouch Front/Back and Lining pieces away from zipper; topstitch using Aurifil Wool thread.

10. Lay the pouch out flat on the table; match right sides of Lining and right sides of Pouch and pin all the way around, leaving a 4” gap in the lining for turning; stitch, making sure to backstitch at the start and finish.

11. Decide how wide you want the bottom of your bag to be and divide that number in half. I wanted this one to have a 1-½” base, which is ¾”. Start the measurement at the seam lines, and draw a square. (Be careful that your lines are accurate! In the photo, I have a “square” that is 1” on one side and ¾” on the other. I took the photo, then adjusted the measurement and forgot to take a new picture. Oops! Mark this square on all four corners; cut on the lines with sharp scissors. DO NOT STITCH THE CORNERS YET!

12. Turn Pouch right side out.

13. Tuck the end of the zipper inside the folded end of Zipper Tab, topstitch across the top of the tab. Make sure the butt of the zipper is out of the way of the stitching line and the path of your sewing machine foot.

14. Guide the zipper tab along the length of the pouch to determine how long to make the handle; mark with a pin, then measure ½” down (towards the end of the tab) and mark with fabric pen on both sides of the tab.

15. Turn the pouch wrong side out again.

16. For the lining, bring the seams together, placing the seams in opposite directions (this will help reduce bulk and make it easier to sew); stitch making sure to backstitch!

18. Tuck the tab through the corner opening. The tab should be centered in the opening and the raw edge of the corner should match up with the mark; pin in place and stitch, using a backstitch on both ends. Stitch the last corner in the same manner as the lining described above.

19. Turn pouch right side out. Pin the opening of the lining; edgestitch using Aurifil 50wt.

That’s it! You’re finished:). Have fun with your bag and fill it with as many treasures as it will hold. We’d love to see what you’ve made, so tag us on Facebook (@aurifil) or Instagram (@aurifilthread) so we can see what you’re up to. Happy Stitching!

Kristi

SARIELLA

Meet SARIELLA — the beautifully brilliant and vibrant thread collection debut by design duo Sarah Thomas (of Sariditty) & Nicole Young (of lillyella) — collaboratively known as Sariella. This box is like a ray of sunshine; a brightness & feeling of warmth that brings an immediate smile. We first met Sarah at QuiltCon earlier this year and were instantly enamored with her energy and her killer quilty style. She even created a stunning quilt for showcase at our booth at Spring Market (learn more here). It came as no surprise that Nicole is equally talented, with a keen eye for color and design. Honestly, we’ve got a bit of a quilty crush!

We are so thrilled to have this chance to partner with them on this perfectly curated collection of our 50wt Thread + one spool of clear monofilament. The collection was inspired by their signature Saki Butterfly pattern, also their logo, and while the threads are everything that you’d need to make your own butterfly, they are bright and lovely and versatile and will perfectly complement so many fabulous projects. We’re super excited to see what you all make with this collection!

THREAD COLLECTION DETAILS
SARIELLA
11 Large Spools Cotton 50wt (1422yds/spool)
1 Large Spools Clear Monofilament (1094yds/spool)
Colors included:
2435 – 2535 – 2277 – 1133 – 1135 – 1231
2884 – 4662 – 2810 – 5006 – 2021 – Clear Monofilament

For more information on this collection, please visit our website or contact your favorite local quilt shop!

INTERVIEW
What first drew you to to the world of sewing and quilting?
As soon as we met via the quilty social media world in May 2015, we became fast friends and seemed to always be asking each other for input, advice, and suggestions on our own personal projects. About a year later, we simply decided that Sariditty and Lillyella needed to join forces to become SARIELLA for some collaborative projects, tutorials, and patterns.

Sarah has been quilting for 3 years, which came about serendipitously. After marrying an Air Force man, Sarah “retired” from her career as a commercial pilot and took on the dutiful spouse role that also meant moving bases often. After moving from South Carolina to southwest Oklahoma, she was visiting her parents in New Mexico where she and her mother attended the Rusty Barn Quilt Show, where she stood at the controls of a longarm for the first time. It was a natural fit for her, and that’s when she took the plunge to purchase a longarm and start quilting. With so many mothers on the Air Force base who wanted to preserve their children’s clothing, making keepsake quilts was the first step to Sarah’s quilting business, and the rest is history!

Nicole began quilting in 2013, also after a military move. She had sewn casually most of her life, but had always wanted to learn how to do it correctly and how to quilt. She finally had some space to set up her machine after moving with husband to Southern Colorado and found a local shop offering classes. She was instantly hooked and hasn’t looked back!

Who or what has been your greatest creative inspiration?
As far as finding inspiration from textiles, we both adore Me+You/Hoffman Fabrics. The modern twist of the Indah Batiks are refreshing and a great change to traditional batiks often seen. We also both love AGF, especially The Denim Studio collection. Sarah is a big fan of Alison Glass, Carolyn Friedlander, and Kate Spain as well. Some of Nicole’s personal favorites are Tula Pink, Anna Maria Horner and Sarah Watts. We both live on quite a bit of acreage that needs upkeep, as well as having animals that need frequent exercise and care. Any time we encounter a creative block, we have our land and animals to occupy our time and brains, which gives us a much-needed reprieve from thinking too hard on any one pattern or project. Usually a stroke of genius hits us while tending to our chores or, quite often, while we’re asleep. We use our day-to-day happenings to lend inspiration and direction to an idea, and collaboratively we make that idea explode! We also recommend looking to your surroundings for inspiration. There are so many amazing patterns and color palettes within nature and the structures around us. Look at things a little different and suddenly that floor you’re walking on isn’t just tile, but a quilt waiting to happen.

Tell us about the Saki Butterfly Quilt and what inspired its creation.
Saki Butterfly came to be as a combination of pattern and technique for which we’re known. Nicole created the Take Wing Pattern – a foundation paper piecing pattern of a full butterfly, which is depicted by the right wing of Saki. Sarah has doodled most of her life and is best recognized for her free motion style she calls Sketchbook Quilting. The left half of Saki is Sarah’s interpretation of a doodle complimenting Nicole’s original Take Wing Pattern. We had the butterfly combination, knew it was a perfect logo, and now needed a name – Our nicknames are Sari and Nikki…hence Sa+ki…Saki!

Over the summer of 2016, Sarah was part of the RJR What Shade Are U? Blog Tour. She instantly knew that an enlarged version of Saki would make the perfect quilt. The quilt was such a hit across the board that we are now offering weekend workshops for this specific pattern, which focuses on foundation paper piecing, appliqué, and finishing techniques.

What do you love most about putting a project together and do you have tips for those just giving it a try? 
Measure once, measure twice, measure three times then cut and sew. And be cognizant of using consistent seam allowances throughout a project to ensure proper point alignment. Never be afraid to ask questions if you’re unsure of something. Knowing when the perfect time is to use 50wt versus monofilament thread, for instance. Sarah also often says to her quilting students, “Find 10-15 minutes every day to doodle in a sketchbook. Practice, practice, practice the doodles to create muscle memory. It’s no different than taking piano lessons…you have to practice to get better.”

Most of Nicole’s quilting tips are quite the opposite of time savers, because, as a perfectionist, she doesn’t fall in line with the popular quote that “finished is better than perfect”, but believes that taking your time and paying attention to the small details is what makes a great project. She recommends matching your thread to your fabric when piecing, especially when paper piecing bulky seams where it is more likely to show, even if this means changing your thread color two or three times along a single seam. She guarantees the results are worth it!

When did you first discover Aurifil threads and what do you love most about them?
From the very beginning of being involved in the quilt world, Aurifil spools are everywhere! Whether it’s online purchases, a visit to a local quilt shop, or even other people’s social media photos, the recognizable Aurifil spool can’t go unnoticed. Sarah was quick to try out a spool of 50 weight with her piecing and loved it. Quality thread is mandatory when working with quality fabrics – there’s just no way around it. That goes for piecing and quilting. Nicole soon followed by trying out Aurifil once Sarah couldn’t stop talking about it. We love the vast range of thread weights available for our long list of projects and their needs. Everything from 80wt down to embroidery floss…we love each and every one, not to mention the color selection! And the thread collection boxes…they’re just so attractive!!

How did you go about selecting colors for SARIELLA and what excites you most about releasing the collection to the world? 
We’re sure it’s no surprise that our debut collection is based on our fluttering friend, Saki the Butterfly! We’ve curated 11 vibrant spools of 50wt thread that will mix and match with Saki’s coloring and many other colorful projects, and one spool of clear monofilament (which is a favorite of ours!).

This collection is sure to take you through all walks of stitchery fun — from machine and hand piecing to top stitching, appliqué, and quilting. Designing the box art was so enjoyable – mixing Saki Butterfly line art with colorful hexagons, and we’re already plotting and planning how we’ll be using our empty collection boxes because they’re so fun and pretty! We hope you love this collection as much as we do, and we can’t wait to see how you use your collections, both thread and boxes.

UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL + GIVEAWAY
Check out Sariella’s blog today for another look at this fabulous collection and don’t miss the amazing giveaway they’ve got going on over on their Instagram account!


SARIELLA is the quilty love child of Sarah Thomas of Sariditty and Nicole Young of lillyella stitchery. Both are military wives, mommas to big dogs, donut aficionados, and have hyperactive creative drives. They make the nearly 1500 miles and two time zones between them seem effortless with constant video chats, emails, and text messages. The best of their two minds comes to life through unique patterns, fun tutorials, and miscellaneous crafty goodness.

Follow Sariella: WebsiteFacebookInstagram
Follow Sariditty: WebsiteFacebookInstagram
Follow lillyella: WebsiteFacebookInstagram

** All images and most text courtesy of Sarah Thomas & Nicole Young (Sariella) **

Sew Many Colors T-Shirt!

Once upon a time, a designer named Sheri (Cifaldi-Morrill of Whole Circle Studio) had a brilliant idea. She was working on a mini quilt for entry into the annual Quilt Alliance Contest. The theme was ‘playing favorites’. Sheri decided to arrange some of her favorite 50wt spools in her signature circular layout as a tribute to her favorite brand of thread, Aurifil, using her favorite fabric solids, Kona by Robert Kaufman. The spools were realized in actual size and were brought to life via Sheri’s favorite piecing technique — foundation paper piecing.

So Many Colors by Sheri Cifaldi-Morrill

The fine folks here at Aurifil spotted this magnificent mini right away. It was eye-catching and a fine showcase of one of our absolute favorite things… thread! We contacted Sheri and a beautiful partnership was born.

A few months later, we debuted Sew Many Colors, a new pattern created and developed by Sheri, based on her original mini, featuring 10 lovely spools. Sheri chose the number 10 as a secondary tribute to Aurifil USA’s 10th Anniversary! The pattern was offered for free on Sheri’s website and also on ours as a call to action for quilters around the world to create a showcase of their own top 10 spools of thread. We watched with joy as the submissions came in and we got to witness so many different versions of this fabulous pattern. It was one of the highlights of our year and we are forever grateful to Sheri for making it possible.

A few of the mini submissions for your viewing pleasure: 

Fast forward a few more months, to today… Today marks the launch Sew Many Colors: The T-Shirt!

Sheri worked with the incredible team at Patchwork Threads to turn her mini quilt design into a wearable work of art. The V-Neck Tees are available in Black & White Heather and are 20% off  from now through Monday, so if you want to walk around wearing a delightful wheel of your favorite threads, head here to check it out!

And, wearing our super comfy t-shirts, we all lived within happiness, joy, and super fabulous color!

A huge THANK YOU to Sheri Cifaldi-Morrill for being such a creative and wonderful partner in all of this!  ❤

** Aurifil does not profit from this post. We just think that a t-shirt featuring our 50wt threads is particularly fabulous and we couldn’t help but share!

 

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Choose Happiness

Enchanted, Dodi Poulsen of Two Sisters at Squirrel Hollow‘s debut collection for Aurifil, released at Houston Quilt Market last year. The colors were hand-picked to coordinate with the magical prints in her collection with Riley Blake Designs.  A lovely showcase of navy, pink, mint, and teal with a little pop of yellow & green, the collection brings to mind fairytales of our youth.

While her collections boast an array of our 50wt thread, Dodi has been experimenting with our Aurifloss in her Enchanted colors.

She has thoroughly enjoyed working with the floss and was kind enough to put together this lovely pattern to share with all of you:

Choose Happiness is a delightfully sweet embroidery pattern featuring a tiny squirrel among the flowers. It’s completely darling and would look perfect as a finished hoop, as Dodi did here, or finished as a wall hanging, embellishment on a tote, or even on a throw pillow.

To grab your copy of this free pattern, simply click on the link below. Print the page at 100% and use your preferred method to transfer the pattern to your fabric for easy stitching. For some great tips, check out Dodi’s blog.

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We’d love to see your versions of Choose Happiness! Don’t forget to tag us (@aurifilthread & #aurifil) and Dodi (@sashgal) with your project photos so we can oooo and aaaah over your work;).

ENCHANTED FABRIC
Eighteen lovely prints available in yardage & precuts. Click on the link below, or check your local quilt shop for more info!

ENCHANTED THREAD
12 Large Spools, 50wt (1422yds/spool), 100% Aurifil Cotton
2784 – 5007 – 2425 – 1148 – 5002 – 5006
2423 – 1135 – 2882 – 2588 – 4093 – 2515

dodipoulsen-enchantedlg

10 Small Spools, 50wt (220yds/spool), 100% Aurifil Cotton
2784 – 5007 – 2425 – 1148 – 5002
5006 – 1135 – 2882 – 2588 – 2515

dodipoulsen-enchantedsm

To view this info on our website, please click on the images above. For purchasing, please contact your local Aurifil Dealer.

EMBROIDERY PATTERNS by DODI

 

ABOUT DODI
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dodiaurifilpicDodi Lee Poulsen designs and creates wonderful patterns to be enjoyed by quilters of all skill levels. Her patterns and designs have been featured in numerous Quilting magazines. She currently designs fabric for Riley Blake Designs.  She has been a quilt instructor for over twenty five years and she teaches and lectures throughout the country. Together with her sister, Heidi Fisher, Dodi launched her pattern company, Two Sisters at Squirrel Hollow in 2006. Dodi added their children’s division, Little Londyn Patterns, with her daughter Megan Miles. Dodi is the author of 5 books. She and her husband live in the state of Washington and are the proud grandparents of 8 grandchildren.

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The Artistry of Sheena Norquay, Part 1

I first met Sheena Norquay shortly after I started working with Aurifil, a mere 4 years into my time in this industry. Up until that time, I’d never seen anything quite like her work and was immediately taken with her artistry, her vision, and her undeniable quilting genius. She is adventurous in her work, always up for trying something new, while remaining meticulous and measured in her experimentation. Every time she creates a new piece, she sends along thoughts on that piece… what she tried and why, which threads were used, and what she thought about the process. It is both fascinating and breath-taking and I’m excited to share some of that with you over the next few days.

In the last year, Sheena has released 3 new collections… 2 last Fall and one just this past Spring. Each collection has its own voice, its own purpose, and its own color palette. Each comes with a variety of stunning projects, designed to showcase the thread, whether 50wt, 80wt, or floss, and how it can be the star of the show rather than the complementary accessory.

So today, we’re thrilled to introduce you to Sheena, to share our interview with her —  giving us all a peek at her process and some insight into her inspiration — AND also to her collections — The Beach Collection, Scottish Highlands, and The Seabird Collection. Make sure to check back in every day this week to learn a little more about each collection and to see some of Sheena’s gorgeous work!

THREAD COLLECTION DETAILS
The Beach Collection
LARGE – 100% Aurifil Cotton, 12 Large Spools, 50wt (1422yds/spool)
Colors included:
2524 – 2564 – 4150 – 1248 – 2311 – 2375
2610 – 2312 – 2340 – 2615 – 2805 – 2326

Scottish Highlands, 50wt
SMALL – 100% Aurifil Cotton, 10 Small Spools, 220yds/spool
Colors included:
2309 – 2612 – 2566 – 6735 – 2885
1246 – 2775 – 2155 – 2975 – 1147

Scottish Highlands, Aurifloss
SMALL – 100% Aurifil Cotton, 10 Small Spools, 18yds/spool
Colors included:
2309 – 2612 – 2566 – 6735 – 2885
1246 – 2775 – 2155 – 2975 – 1147

The Seabird Collection
SMALL – 100% Aurifil Cotton, 10 Small Spools, 80wt (300yds/spool)
Colors included:
2692 – 2021 – 2630 – 2625 – 2615
2370 – 2324 – 2255 – 1135 – 2775

To view this info on our website, please click on the images above. For purchasing, please contact your local Aurifil Dealer.

Sheena Norquay’s Beach Collection

THE INTERVIEW
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your background?
I am from the Orkney Islands which lie to the north of Scotland, but now live in Inverness, the capital city of the Highlands, most of the time. I used to be a Primary School teacher but am now a freelance quilting teacher. I teach and exhibit nationally and internationally and have won many awards for my work.

What first drew you to to the world of textiles?
I have been exposed to textiles since I was a child. My mother knitted and sewed all our clothes. One grandmother knitted Fair Isle garments and the other grandmother did embroidery, painting and various fabric crafts. I was also taught how to knit and sew at school but my favourite activity, which I did at home, was to make clothes for my dolls from fabric scraps. This developed into making my own clothes when I was in my early teens.

I loved fabrics and threads from an early age and was introduced to more exotic textiles when one of my uncles, who went to sea, brought back an embroidered skirt and top which he bought in India. Sadly, the garments did not fit, but I still have them in my collection, along with embroidery by my grandmother and by many unknown women whose work I have bought at antique fairs and charity shops.

My introduction to patchwork happened while I was doing my B.Ed degree. One of the girls in my2-dimensionall design course was working on a hexagon bedspread so I decided to have a go and make a cushion. Laura Ashley scrapbags were on sale then in the 1970’s so I used them as well as my own scraps. The cushion grew into a bedspread and I remember being so proud of making something so large!

In 1979 I saw my first actual quilts at an exhibition in Inverness Museum and Art Gallery of old American quilts and a smaller exhibition of “modern” quilts by an American quilter called Linda Schaepper.  That was the beginning of my entry into the world of quilting and I have been so lucky to have experienced the growth in its popularity and to have met so many wonderful people and to have travelled to so many places.

Puffy Puffins Detail (Sheena Norquay)

Who or what has been your greatest creative inspiration?
Apart from my late mother and grandmothers, the late May Miller ( friend of Kathleen Whyte, well known embroiderer and head of the Embroidery Department at the Glasgow School of Art at that time)  was the person to show me the creative potential of threads and fabric and she taught  me to see the world with creative eyes during the 2 years of my 2 dimensional design course.

In the 1980’s when I joined the Quilters’ Guild of the British Isles I was inspired by Deirdre Amsden’s use of fabrics and colour. Also, the Guild had slides of American quilts for hire and I was inspired by how Michael James used colour and pattern, and how Nancy Halpern used quilting to create movement and atmosphere.

From where do you draw inspiration for your artwork?
Most of my inspiration comes from looking closely at nature. I am particularly inspired by Orkney skies, its magical light and its seascapes. I also like looking at patterns on sandy beaches and lines on rocks. I find bird shapes very elegant and enjoy doodling and decorating surfaces with stitching, hand and machine.

Photo by Sheena Norquay

Can you tell us a bit about your process — how you determine the subject of a new piece and how you work through from start to finish?
I usually begin by taking lots of photos of something that inspires me. This could be subjects already mentioned, group challenges or themes for quilt shows. This is followed by thumbnail sketches of possible compositions. I then scale one of these up to a full size drawing (sometimes using an overhead projector) and think about the techniques I am going to use.

The next step is to go through my fabrics selecting the ones that I think are suitable, followed by a final selection. The rejects are put back on the shelves. For a pieced landscape or seascape, for instance, I make templates, pin them on the reverse sides of the fabrics, cut leaving about quarter of an inch and piece. Details are appliqued on to the background before quilting. If it is a wholecloth quilt, I trace the drawing on to the fabric ready for quilting. Threads are selected, usually Aurifil no. 50 cotton, and then the free motion quilting begins.

I always have a few projects on the go at the same time. Most of the machine work is done in the mornings or afternoons, whereas hand stitching is done in the evenings while watching TV or on long train journeys!

Scallops Detail (Sheena Norquay)

When did you first discover Aurifil threads and what do you love most about them?
I first started buying Aurifil no. 50 cotton threads from Barnyarns in England when Madeira tanne cotton no. 50 was no longer available, sometime in the early 2000’s. I love Aurifil threads because they are of such high quality and go through the machine so smoothly. I also like hand quilting and embroidering  with cotton no 28, 12 and Aurifloss. Recently, I started using wool acrylic on various tweeds like Harris tweed, both for embroidering by hand and machine. I am very lucky to be given threads by Aurifil and am honoured to have been asked to compose several thread collections.

How big of a role do the threads play in your artwork?
I would say the threads play the main role now, especially when stitching wholecloths. Because I have always been drawn to drawing rather than painting, I think this is why I enjoy quilting so much. I would also say that when I am asked to compose a collection for Aurifil, I select thread colours before the fabrics and it is an interesting challenge to do sample pieces using only 10 or 12 colours. In the past, I have tended to select fabrics first and then threads but of course it depends what you are making, whether it be something pieced, appliqued or a wholecloth.

I  also enjoyed the challenge set by Alex when he gave me my first spool of Aurifloss to try. This has opened up a whole new way of working with threads and blending the colours to create new colours, whether it be in an ordered, mathematical way when creating gradations of colour in 1, 2,3,4 or 5 steps, or in a more intuitive, painterly way when embroidering, say an animal or landscape. For instance, I might add one strand of a dark colour to 3 strands of another colour or colours to darken something like the edge of a tree trunk just a little bit, whereas I might use 3 strands of the dark colour and one strand of  another colour if I wanted it much darker.

So, at the design stage, as well as thinking about thread colours, I also think about what type of Aurifil threads I am going to use for the various hand and machine techniques.

Postcards from Scottish Highlands — Highland Cow Detail (Sheena Norquay)

What is up next for you? Where can we find you this year?
I will be helping on the Aurifil stand at The Festival of Quilts in August. After that I have an exhibition with Gillian Travis and Hilary Gooding at the Cowslip Workshops in Cornwall in the south of England followed by teaching at various places. Later in the year I will be teaching at the Quilt Symposium in New Zealand and finally I hope to do some writing.

Photo by Sheena Norquay

ABOUT SHEENA
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Sheena Norquay was born on the Orkney Islands, just off the Northern tip of Scotland. Though she began sewing as a child, it wasn’t until attending University in Aberdeen to gain a B.Ed degree that she truly dove into the world of sewing, quilting, and textiles. The degree included 2-dimensional design in textiles which inspired her interest in exploring the artistic potential of threads and fabrics.

Having been a Primary School teacher in Inverness for 30 years, Sheena is now a freelance quilting teacher and teaches workshops locally, all over the UK, and sometimes abroad. She also writes articles for magazines and her quilts have been featured in several books.

Sheena’s work has been exhibited locally, nationally, and internationally since 1981 and she has won many awards in competitive quilt shows. She sells her work, cards and postcards of her work, and also accept commissions.

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Daisy Days by Keera Job

Keera Job‘s debut collection for Riley Blake Designs is the absolute vision of Summer. Daisy Days features Pinks, Blues, & Greens with some Yellow & Grey to complete the scene. The sweet florals evoke visions of a carefree childhood — garden adventures, daisy chains, and afternoon tea parties. In fact, Keera’s first sketches for the collection were drawn while sitting in her garden, watching her two daughters at playtime.  Our heads are spinning with ideas for what to make with these gorgeous prints!

Keera’s coordinating thread collections feature our incredibly versatile 50wt thread in both large and small spools. She has included all of her go-to colors — everything you’ll need to create your own delightful Summer projects.

THREAD COLLECTION DETAILS
Daisy Days
LARGE – 100% Aurifil Cotton, 12 Large Spools, 50wt (1422yds/spool)
Colors included:
4644 – 2805 – 2847 – 6726 – 1231 – 2884
2255 – 2435 – 2415 – 2130 – 2140 – 2021

SMALL – 100% Aurifil Cotton, 10 Small Spools, 50wt (220yds/spool)
Colors included:
4644 – 2847 – 6726 – 1231 – 2884
2255 – 2435 – 2415 – 2130 – 2021

To view this info on our website, click here. For purchasing, please contact your local Aurifil Dealer.

THE INTERVIEW
What first drew you to to the world of sewing and quilting?

I made my first quilt on the floor of my Grandma’s sewing room when I was fourteen. This is where my love of colour and fabric really began. When my daughter was born almost five years ago I launched my business, LIVE.LOVE.SEW Pattern Co. and began designing quilt patterns and sharing free quilt tutorials on my blog. Colour and fabric has and always will be what drives my creativity.

Who or what has been your greatest creative inspiration?
My girls are my greatest inspiration – the way they view the world, their vivid imaginations and the simplicity of just being with them really opens my eyes up to new things. I love exploring with them and helping create memories they will hold forever. I also draw a lot of inspiration from others – their stories and their gorgeous creations all make me want to get in my studio and draw or sew or paint!

How did you first connect with Riley Blake and what do you love most about working with them?
I was working alongside Millhouse Collections here in Australia, who are the distributors for Riley Blake Designs fabrics, as an ambassador. They saw some of my designs and after we spoke on the phone I submitted my full collection concept. I’m still pinching myself! Designing fabric is a dream come true and I’m so humbled to be joining the Riley Blake Designs family.

Tell us about Daisy Days. What inspired the designs? 
Daisy Days was created for my girls. It is all about childhood memories – making daisy chains and hand-picked posies with ribbons and bows. It’s garden adventures, playing ring-a-rosie with giggly girls and having tea-parties with teddy bear friends. I drew the first sketches for this collection sitting in the garden watching my girls at playtime. Remembering this still warms my heart.

Do you have a favorite project or projects made with the collection? 
I designed three quilts to coordinate with the collection, but my favourite is the Picking Daisies quilt. Its a combination of scrappy patchwork blocks and applique pieces. I love that you can hand sew the petals and quilt it with the coordinating Daisy Days threads!

When did you first discover Aurifil threads and what do you love most about them?
I began using Aurifil threads when I made my daughter’s baby quilt. I had read so many great reviews about the range of threads and ordered some online to try. I love the colour range available, and the varying weights are brilliant for any type of sewing or quilting project. Aurifil threads give you this feeling from the beginning that you are working with something special and something of great quality.

How did you go about selecting colors for Daisy Days and what excites you most about releasing the collection to the world? 
This was so fun! I love looking through the Aurifil colour cards to colour match to my projects. Doing it with my own fabric collection was a fantastic feeling! I’ve matched colours for each of the colourways in the collection – there’s the gorgeous pinks that I am crushing and beautiful pops of sunshine yellow and leaf green. Also included is my go-to 2021 White which I use for ALL my quilt piecing!

GIVEAWAY

To enter-to-win Keera’s Large Daisy Days thread collection AND a bundle of Daisy Days by Keera Job for Riley Blake Designs, click here to head to the Rafflecopter entry page, or simply click on the image above. You do not have to complete all the options to be entered but the more options you choose, the more entries you have!  Entries will be accepted from now through 11:59pm Eastern Time on Wednesday, August 9! Winner will be randomly selected and announced here on Thursday, August 10. Good luck!

DAISY DAYS BLOG TOUR

While we’re not one of the official stops on the Daisy Days Blog Tour, we are still excited about following along with this gorgeous showcase. The event kicked off this past Tuesday with Sedef Imer of Down Grapevine Lane and will continue on every Tuesday throughout the month of August. See below for the schedule so that you don’t miss a thing!

Tuesday 1 August Sedef Imer downgrapevinelane.com
Tuesday 8 August Amy Smart diaryofaquilter.com
Tuesday 15 August Amanda Herring amandaherringdesigns.com 
Tuesday 22 August Samantha Dorn aquapaisleystudio.com
Tuesday 29 August Emily Dennis quiltylove.com 

ABOUT KEERA
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Keera is wife to cattle farmer and mother to two beautiful little girls. She lives with her family in gorgeous rural Australia, spending her days drawing and designing fabric and quilt patterns, teaching and hosting little-girl tea-parties on her favourite quilts! She is a young working mother who found quilting and surface design through some amazingly inspirational women. She feels blessed to share her love of fabric, colour, quilts and design!

 

** Images, biographical text and interview text by Keera Job & Riley Blake

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