Interviews Podcast Becky  

Guest Designer – Leila of Sewn by Leila

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Today is the day that I get to introduce the guest designer for the IAQ members!  This is Leila (who pronounces her name with a hard I and I totally botched it in the interview, even though I practiced!!!!)

This year will be a little bit different as a few of these designers I haven’t met…and don’t know a whole lot about.  I just love their work, designs, and they are seriously so fun to chat with!  Everyone is a friend when it comes to quilting, right?!

So- for now– Meet Leila—

A little bit about Leila-

I love quilting! Designing patterns, freshening up traditional patterns, picking fabrics and interacting with this great online quilting community.

Take a listen to her podcast interview:

Here’s a quick look at what she designed for members

About the project for the quilt group:

This set of quilts was inspired by the desire – and need! – to be able to make some child-sized quilts quickly. Quilts that were fun, cute, fast, and utilitarian. These quilts are made from a yard of fabric with another panel of fabric inserted in the bottom third to give it more length. These quilts are perfect for quick (yet cute!) gifts. In fact, when I make baby quilts, I always make them about this size so that the child can continue to use it as they grow.

Download the Pattern: (members only for access) login here

Materials List:

Basic quilting supplies:
sewing machine, mat, rotary cutter, 24″ long ruler, seam ripper, pins etc

Fabric Requirements
1 yard background fabric
¼” yard for framing strips *
½ yard of various fabrics for middle panel
1/3 yard for binding
1 ½” yards for backing (may need more fabric if taking it to be long-arm quilted)
* The framing strips are meant to provide a border to the inserted panel and should contrast well with both the panel and background fabrics.

Enjoy her interview and trunk show:

How did you get your start in sewing?

My mom taught me how to sew clothes when I was young. I was a pain to teach and threw fits when she made me do things like unpick mistakes or “press as you go”, but now I really appreciate the time and patience she used to teach me.

I made my first hand pieced 9 patch quilt when I was 9 years old after reading about how Mary and Laura worked on their quilts in the Little House on Prairie books.

I still have it, but it is falling apart because I somehow equated the “small even stitches” described in the book with narrow seam allowances. Eek!

I didn’t quilt again until after my first daughter was born. I wasn’t really interested in quilting, but, against my better judgement, a friend convinced me to go to a block of the month club with her at a local quilt store. I loved it and haven’t stopped quilting since!

What inspires you?

I really like traditional patterns, but I like to mix them up a little or make them in more “modern” fabrics to make them my own. Fabric itself also inspires me…to figure out what I could make out of it in order to justify buying it! 🙂

Do you have a favorite notion?

My favorite notions are the oldies but goodies that are sometimes boring to invest in. For years I put off buying a variety of different sized rulers because of the cost, but when I finally did I couldn’t believe I had waited so long. Cutting was so much easier with rulers that were the correct size for the job!

The same with my cutting mat. I had a smaller one but, when we moved, I had a larger cutting space and bought a larger mat.

Even though my smaller mat is still out, I never use it. The larger one is so much more convenient. I also replaced my seam ripper recently and the sharp new blade works like a dream. I don’t have any fancy notions, but investing in good basic tools has made quilting so much easier and enjoyable for me.

Quirky Fun little thing about yourself:

We went on vacation to Mexico over Christmas and my daughter took some videos by the pool while I was working on my English paper piecing. During one very long video I sat like a statue with a really weird serious expression on my face. Occasionally my eyes would flick up and down and my foot was flexed up all weird. I couldn’t figure out what I was doing – or why I was so still.

I finally realized that I was looking at the different block components and trying to figure out which piece would look best where. I showed it to my husband and his response was, “Yeah? That’s what you look like whenever you English paper piece.” Not my best look and he has seen a lot of it! Who knew? (I also rub my feet together in bed when I am falling asleep.)

What’s happened lately that we can check out~

She has a book out!  Her Building Skills for Beginners hit the shelf and has become a favorite.  What a fun project– you can decide the blocks and the techniques that you are ready to explore and give a try.  Perfect for any level of quilter.

She also has an online quilting class for beginners on

You will definitely want to check out the story of the Grandmother’s Flower Garden Quilt and other behind the scenes of her projects.

Where can you find her?




Ready to sew up the  1 Yard wonder Quilt?  Become a member here.

Have a question for Leila?  Drop it in the comments!

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