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Guest Designer // Jessica of Quilty Habit
I’m so excited to introduce Jessica to everyone! Her style of quilting is right up my alley and I was delighted when she said yes for an opportunity to be a guest designer for the Quilt Group. She has a few things that you can participate along with her pattern she is sharing– like a block of the month, which is exploring color. So fun! I’ll let her introduce a bit more about herself–
I started sewing in high school in a beginner class, but never thought I’d do it again. In 2010, I decided I couldn’t afford for someone else to make me a t-shirt quilt, borrowed my future mother-in-law’s sewing machine, and the rest was history.
- I love to travel!
- My favorite cities are Prague, Czech Republic, and Berlin, Germany.
- If I’m not sewing or writing, you can usually find me with a book or watching Lord of the Rings, Parks and Recreation, or Doctor Who.
- I’ve been married for three years to the most wonderfully supportive quilty husband, Mike. We’re high school sweethearts and he’s my talented quilt photographer. 🙂
- My younger sister is one of my main cheerleaders and supports me constantly from a long distance. When she’s visiting, we get up to shenanigans.
- I’m a former theater performer and barbershop singer.
- I have a weakness for Reeses.
Feel free to listen to her interview (it’s not the same as what’s below!)
How did you get your start in sewing?
I took a sewing class in high school as part of a home ec requirement – I had always been creative, and it seemed interesting. I had fun and learned the basics but never thought I would do it again. Fast forward to two years out of high school when I was going through my t-shirts and discovered how expensive (and rightfully so!) it was to make a t-shirt quilt. I thought I could do it myself, so I borrowed my future MIL’s machine and I got hooked!
What inspires you?
Nature, architecture. Odd beauties (like unique sunsets, subway station railings). Other quilters! Modern design/geometrics. The seasons.
Do you have a favorite notion?
Wonder clips, my machine’s knee lift, 505 basting spray, glass head pins (which I just discovered!).
Quirky Fun little thing about yourself:
Haha! A quirky fact… I used to sing bass (the lowest range) in a girls’ barbershop chorus in high school. My younger sister did, too, so whenever she’s home, we rock it out for hours. I WAS a soprano (and I still am) but it totally stretched my voice, and I learned a lot about precision and improvisation (similar to quilting, actually!).
What’s coming up that we can look forward to?
I just kicked off the Star Light, Star Dark Quilt-A-Long, which is a beginner quilt in two sizes (lap and baby). The series, which runs until October, will explore color contrast (today’s post), traditional piecing, and alternate gridwork (nontraditional layout), which is part of modern quilting.
I’m also continuing to teach to several quilt guilds, both modern and traditional, over the coming months. I lecture about modern quilting, improvisation, and free motion quilting, and I offer a range of classes for beginners to intermediate-expert modern quilters. My next class is the premiere of my Waterfall Class + Intermediate Free Motion Quilting with the Baltimore Modern Quilt Guild on August 20!
Where can you find her?
About the project for the quilt group:
I wrote up a pattern called Sparklers. The directions are for a tablerunner, but it can easily be turned into a quilt. It has an improvisational element but I guide you through it in case you’ve never tried improvisation before!
You can use any three colors (minimum) to achieve the sparkler look! I’ll also share the fun, improvised backing that I made out of scraps.
Sparklers table runner:
Three colors: between 5-8 fat quarters or fat eighths of each color, OR scraps at least 17″ long and between 1.25″ and 2.5″ wide.*
Backing: 1 yard
Binding: .25 yard
Batting: 20″ x 46″. For table runners, I usually sew together batting scraps from quilts!
*You will have extra fabric from the top, especially if you use fat quarters, but I wrote those in because they are usually more accessible than fat eighths.
*You will have extra after you cut strips from them.
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