art gallery fabrics

Designer’s Palette of the Month: Bonnie Christine

DP Template copy

Summer is coming to an end but at this time of year where we should take advantage of the summer nights. Inspired by all the warm colors that come out during the golden hour, I instantly thought of Bonnie Christine and her fabrics! But how can I choose just one collection from her? Thankfully, AGF already did the hard work for me! You may have seen the Color Masters before on the blog talking about each color group but now AGF launched the Color Master in “Designer’s Palette Edition” where they have curated a 10-piece FQ/HY sampler bundle from each designer with coordinating prints, to better introduce you to each designer’s style. 

 

Last month, we talked about Katarina Roccella’s Designer’s Palette, and for this month's spotlight, Bonnie Christine’s Designer was the perfect combination of style and colors I needed for this season. 



Bonnie Christine grew up in North Carolina, where her mother had a quilt shop that she would spend her time creating, sewing, and mostly, falling in love with the fabric. Working with her mother's own fabric stash, her dream to start designing her own fabrics begun. 

 

Bonnie’s prints are inspired by the nature that surrounds her, from the largest of trees to the tiniest of leaves. Always finding the simple things in life through her photography, and drawing in her sketchbook. She taught herself how to use Adobe Illustrator and read many books about designing- fast forward to today, she evolved to the designer she is today. In every single print, she embraces the design process which makes the end results very meaningful to her. 

If you’re looking for a sweet yet earthy color palette with delicate designs, Bonnie Christine’s Designer’s Palette captures her style with an assortment of her past collections like Hello Bear, Succulence, and Gathered. I can see projects made with these fabrics ranging from cozy quilts, kitchen decor like tea towels or pot holders, and of course some, sweet pillows. 

Bonnies DP

Obsessing over the prints with a retro-vibe, I decided to make a Harvest Apron, using some of the prints from the FQ box! I made this super easy apron, that anyone can make or customize with their favorite prints. 

Group 1 Group 2
To start, you can cut out all the pieces you need before putting anything together. You’ll need:

-Three 7 ½ inch squares for the pockets (I used prints “Spiny Oasis Divine,” “Beekeeper Lime,” and “Simple Living.”)

-One 16 x 22-inch square (I used “Feathered Flight Sunken”)

-Three 4 ½ Inch strips of any direction you’d wish to cute from the FQ (I used “Timeless Rosewood”)

I first started to sew the three squares in a row, together and placed the right side on top of “Feathered Flight Sunken’s” wrong side (see pictures above). I folded the side edges, so when I sewed around the whole thing, I would have a clean edge once I flipped the pockets inside-out. I topstitched each pocket square with the “Feathered Flight Sunken” underneath to create different compartments. 

Lastly, I grabbed the three strips and sewn them together so I can make one strip, big enough to tie behind your back. I folded the strips in half, pressed the right sides together, and sewn on the edge. Flip the tube inside out and sew the ends. Iron to make completely flat, and align the edge with “Feathered Flight Sunken” then sew together. 

Final

Viola, you’re done! Talk about an easy project right? Ideal for any retro-inspired kitchen, or an easy gift to make for someone who also loves Bonnie’s prints. 

A true collector’s box! Remember that this box is there for your convenience, it has many uses! The “Color Master Box” can keep your fabrics organized and neatly displayed for easy finding, or you can share the love because it’s perfectly curated in a box for an easy present!

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Too excited to get straight to the fabric?! You can get all Color Master Designer’s Palettes, in a BUNDLE, also available in FQ or HY.

Bundles copy


If you're a fan of Bonnie Christine or know someone who is, these groups of fabrics would be the perfect gift or you treat you yourself by finding them in our online stores. AGF made a box for all of their designers, so don’t forget to check them all out here. If you have any project ideas or already sewn something with these fabrics, make sure to tag us on social media using #artgalleryfabrics.

 

Keep making,

Jannelle

 


QUILTY MEMORIES THAT WILL LAST A LIFETIME

I have never been good at goodbyes, finding the right words to express how I feel in the final moments of goodbye are so hard for me. Filled with emotion, sometimes I find myself speechless if only people could read minds. The past five years and four months working at Art Gallery Fabrics have been filled with amazing memories, life-changing experiences, and relationships that will last a lifetime. 

After 8 years of living in Florida, I am returning to my home state of Minnesota! After the passing of my Dad this past March I realize my heart and presence belongs in Minnesota. I am going to miss being apart of the AGF Team and coming to work each morning and being surround by such talented young ladies! Of course, my sewing and quilting journey doesn't end here, I will always be AGF’s number one fan and supporter and will continue to create, sew, and inspire. 

Thanks to all of you who have liked, commented, encouraged and inspired me and AGF over the years and for making this amazing sewing community a beautiful space for all of us to grow and learn from each other. I thought it would be fun to incorporate my top five favorite memories at AGF, that I will never forget and cherish always. 

1. Sewing My First Quilt

The first quilt I designed and sewed up is called the “Pentelic Marvel Quilt” with Athena Fabrics

There is a picture of me below testing out my block measurements with scrap fabrics. I had no idea what I was getting myself into. Sewing half rectangle triangles were totally confusing and frustrating, and I had the toughest time keeping a perfect ¼” seam allowance but I had the biggest goofiest smile on my face ready to tackle anything and everything. 

First Quilt

 

This quilt wasn’t my finest work or something I am particularly proud of but it marks the beginning of my quilting journey. I have learned so much about the design, piecing, and quilting process which has turned me into the quilter I am today! We all start somewhere, the most important thing is we start because it only gets better from there. 

First Quilt12. My First Quilt Market

2014 Pittsburgh Spring Market was the first quilt market I ever attended, I remember that day as if it was yesterday. I had no idea what to expect but when I got there I was blown away by all the quilts, sewing brands, and people who shared a passion for the same thing I did! Throughout all the many markets I attended I met and gained so much knowledge and love for the sewing and quilting community. Meeting and chatting with bloggers, quilt shops, and distributors from all over learning how each of them fit into the textile world. 

 

What I will remember the most about Quilt Market is all the hard work and dedication it took to create our booths and the great group of girls making you laugh along the way. 

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Here are two pictures of both of our entrances to our booth that year. My fingers still tingle from all the hot glue burns I gave myself creating these floral-inspired walls. 


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3. Creation of the AGF Quilt Block Collection

 

The creation of the AGF Quilt Block collection is what started me on the path to creating youtube videos for AGF. 

Quilt-Block

With no experience in filming, or editing I took it upon myself to figure it out. After creating 71 block videos and a lot of trial and error I finally have found my voice. I created the AGF Quilt Block Collection to do my part in teaching quilters of all skill levels to learn and create something new with AGF Fabrics. I have had such a blast coming out of my comfort zone and spreading my love for AGF fabrics. 




4. Community Sampler Sew Along

Being apart of the Community Sampler Sew Along hosted by two of our amazing designers, Sharon Holland, and Maureen Cracknell was one of the most heart filled experiences of my time at AGF. 

AGF Community Sampler

All the girls in the office participated in making this quilt, each week I would sit down with each girl teaching them the basics of quilting and by the end of their lesson, they would have a completed quilt block. Each week I introduced the girls to you on the blog with a little Q and A. It was such an honor to share my knowledge and love for sewing with all of them. So many laughs and memories I will never forget! 

Community-Sampler-Sew-Along-16-weeks

 

5. Celebrating with my AGF Family 

Being far away from family was hard at first when I first moved to Florida until I found my AGF Family. AGF isn’t just a job, it’s way more than that. 

Here you're treated like family and at AGF they love throwing a good party. One of my most memorable birthdays at AGF was the Thor themed party they threw me.  Nerd alert...yes I love everything Marvel, with Thor being my all-time favorite. Here is me below geeking out over the giant Thor poster they put together. 

Thor party

Since it’s hard for me to come up with the right words I will leave you all with a quote that sums up how I feel,

 

 “How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.” 

 

A.A. Milne (Winnie-the- Pooh)

Meli-in-the-AGF-Shop

Hope you all keep in touch and until next time, 

Happy Sewing! :) 





Quilting in Fashion

Who would’ve thought that quilting is becoming a huge trend in the fashion industry? Handmade and personalized touches are "must-have's for the season" and we, my dear quilting friends, are the experts! All we have to do is choose a simple pattern to show off all our knowledge.

For me, it was very easy to get inspired by the colorful, bohemian, and chic Nuncia Collection. Since so many quilting ideas came to my head with all the amazing prints, I decided to make vests with two techniques that I really like. That way, I could put all my effort into what I love the most: piecing.

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For the first vest, I chose to use the Chevron technique, I felt that with the saturated colors from the collection I could get a '70s vibe, kind of boho and fun. If you would like a step by step explanation of how to make it just click on the Chevron Tutorial link.

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After all the fabric cutting and piecing, it was very exciting to lay the strips on the floor and get a vision of how it was going to look.

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Then, I took my front vest pattern and back vest pattern and blended the side seams to make one pattern for the whole vest. This way I didn’t have to interrupt the zig-zag look with the side seams.

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To clean the inside of my garment, I cut the vest pattern in another fun print from the collection to use as lining.  I started by aligning and joining the necklines, then the armholes followed by the hemlines, and finally the center front with the zipper.

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For the second vest, I wanted to do an improvised look using a traditional technique, the Dresden. For a detailed explanation on how to make it just click on the Dresden Tutorial Link.

I cut many uneven strips from different fabrics and joined them randomly into blocks to sub-cut them using my Dresden ruler.Vests-06

As you can see, I couldn’t resist playing with my pieces and admiring how beautiful they looked together.

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Since the Dresden wasn't big enough, I added larger uneven strips to the sides until the whole block was bigger than the vest pattern. And just to give it a more improvised look I decided to appliqué some flowers from the "Flowers Everywhere Caress" fabric in the center of the Dresden, instead of a perfect circle. These fabrics kept on inspiring me!

Now, all that's left to do is quilt it and finish it. This time instead of hiding the raw edges with the lining, I will use binding all around to add the extra quilty/high fashion look.Vests-07So what team are you on, Team Dresden Obsession or Team Chevron Love? I still can’t decide, but there is something that I know for sure, I will have two beautiful vests to wear this fall! ;)

 

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Happy Piecing!

- Laucara


How to Sew a “Continental” Quilt Block Tutorial featuring Nuncia Fabrics by Pat Bravo

My Mom has always told me becoming a Mother was the most rewarding thing that could have ever happened to her. Being a mother of four she loves all her kids the same but has always held her two daughters closest to her heart. There is just something so special about a mother-daughter relationship where your Mom isn’s just a Mom but a best friend. 

This basically sums up Pat Bravo’s inspiration for her latest collection, Nuncia, which is named after her mother and is a tribute to her life and the amazing lessons she left for her two daughters. This collection has great statement prints to choose from classic paisleys, unique leopard prints, and artistic florals.  

How-to-Sew-a-Continental-Quilt--Block

For today’s quilt block tutorial, I sewed up the “Continental” Block! This 9” block came out so fantastically! I love the super patchy look with the star and cross design. 

Have fun watching the video below! Let me know what you think of this block below! For more fun sewing projects made with Nuncia fabrics make sure to check out our Fabric Lookbook



Happy Sewing, 

Meli 


Nuncia by Pat Bravo: A Tribute

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“One of the most challenging designs I think I’ve ever done, a collection that pays tribute to the wonderful human being that my mother was. She passed away a little more than a year ago, and I wanted to do a collection dedicated to her. Her name was Anunciacion, but we called her Nuncia, and in this collection, I put my heart and soul, creating the things, designs, and colors that she loved.” - Pat Bravo.

Paying tribute to her mother, our designer Pat Bravo created her latest collection, NUNCIA! Since her mother was from Argentina and adored cultural influences from there like dancing the tango, this collection features a bold Spanish flair, as well as a nod to a free-spirited, 70's bohemian aesthetic. 

Nuncia Fabric 19

Available in 16 cotton prints, Nuncia is also available in 3 knits and 1 rayon! 

Nuncia Fabric 10 Nuncia Fabric 15

To read more about Pat's memories of her mother and how they turned into fabrics for this collection, make sure to check out our "Nuncia Fabric Lookbook." This lookbook not only offers inspiration for home decor projects, but there's also quite a focus on garment making as well! 

Pat also designed "Bolero Quilt" as a free quilt pattern for this collection. "Bolero" being a popular dance in Argentina! Just click the below link for pattern: 

Download Quilt Pattern

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- NUNCIA GIVEAWAY - 

Enter a chance to win this fabric bundle by signing up to our giveaway:Patbravo_fabric_4_copy_copy

Congratulations to our winner - Sandra Sparks! Please check your email.  

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Beginner's Journey: MY FIRST QUILT

Hello, my fabric friends! 

I can’t believe I am finally sharing the news… it’s been a couple of weeks now since I spoke about my sewing journey but I’ve been working on something special. I’ve been gone for a good reason, and yes, ladies and gents, I finally decided to tackle my biggest project yet- MY FIRST QUILT! If you have been following along to my journey, I started sewing around 3 months ago, learning about the basic techniques of sewing to making my first quilt block, my first pillow, learning how to bind and all these projects were preparing me to make my first official quilt. My goal ever since I started this journey was to get to this point, I really wanted to dive into the quilting world because I see such beautiful work every day, from all of you! It inspires me, and I needed to understand all the hard work that goes into making one. 

So how did I end up with this quilt, you ask? Well, knowing this was going to be my first, I was thinking simple, yet impactful. Something that can inspire other beginner quilters! You might’ve seen on Social Media all the fun campaigns we’ve been working with our Pure Solids lately in the office, so I thought to myself, let's make a simple quilt with just squares but with really bold colors. Thinking of what colors I should use, yellow has been becoming one of my favorite colors so I challenged myself to use as many yellows in this quilt design, but of course, to add more color, I wanted to create a gradient! After I finished my design, I noticed it looked like a sunset, and I decided to call it just that. 

Names of fabric*Colors used for Sunset Quilt

The time has come, to finally put all that I learned to the test. I began cutting out 8 ½ inch squares and laying it out on the floor to visualize how it’ll look. At this point, I felt really excited, after so long staring at it on the computer screen- my vision turned into reality.

Floor pieces SQUAREGroup 1

I sewed each square together in each row, and then I sewed each row together and before I knew it, I was already done with my quilt top! 

Quilt top

Once everything was together I made sure all my seams were sewn at ¼ of an inch and checked to see if all my seams matched up. I was pretty happy that all my seams matched up, and if you just starting to quilt- my biggest advice would be to make sure you pin A LOT! Once I finished, I selected Squared Pure Elements in Noir as my backing because the squares resembled my quilt design! As I was laying all the layers out, I recommend not doing it on top of carpet because I made that mistake and I kept wrinkling the backing. It wasn’t until I moved everything to a hard surface, that everything was smooth! I pinned it all down with safety pins to prevent from pricking myself with needles as I quilted (learned that the hard way).

Sewing

The moment I was really dreading came, the quilting! I know there was no reason to be dreading this moment as I quilted smaller projects before and I had a blast, but this was a big project and I was afraid to mess it up. Well spoiler alert, I definitely did not nail this step. Quilting large pieces, let alone sewing straight lines were not easy and this was the biggest challenge for me. I started quilting from the middle to avoid bunching up the fabric, but this made even more difficult to sew as I had a lot of excess fabric on the side that kept me from feeding it to the sewing machine. Boy, did I work up a sweat trying to keep these lines straight, I even used a walking foot with a seam guide, but that still wasn’t enough. I was upset at first because it wasn't perfect but I had to remind myself that this is my first quilt and mistakes are going to happen.

Sewing pt3

Imperfections aside, I had some fun playing with the thread in my quilting! I used 4 different colors: yellow, orange, red, and purple. Starting with yellow on the darkest corner (purple side) and once I got to the red part of the quilt I would switch to orange, then red to yellow to create a gradient diagonal lines for some contrast! 

Denim strips

I can see the finish line, I was done quilting my quilt and it was time to move on to the binding- the next skill I learned! It took me some time to decide what I wanted to use for the binding because I didn’t want it to take away from the quilt or choose a Pure Solid color that might not fit. I asked the girls at the studio for some suggestions, and one of them mentioned why not use denim? A little light bulb went off in my head, and I couldn’t think of a better choice! I chose Denim in Endless Paradise and proceeded to cut 2 ½ inch strips long enough to go around the whole quilt. 

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If you followed along with my first binding experience, I did a single fold bind because I had a narrower strip of fabric, but found this method a little harder to get down as it involved a lot of folding and more room for mistakes. This time, I tried the double fold and it was a lot easier because once I started sewing in the ditch, it would line-up perfect with the edge of my fabric on the back. 

Final quilt copynotfull

After days of work, I am so excited to say that I am done with my first quilt! Hurray! Although I had some rough times, I enjoyed every second of it. I’m already eager to start on another quilt with more pieces and even start playing with some prints! I just wanted to give a quick thanks to all of those that commented on the blog before and followed along my sewing journey, from the motivational comments to the sewing advice I received. This is an ongoing journey, with plenty of new skills to learn and I’m thrilled to continue to share here on the blog.  As always, if you have any tips for me for my next quilt, please let me know in the comments below!

Of course, you can always make your own version of this with different colors, downloading the instructions here. BUT just in case you’d like to recreate my quilt, I'M HOSTING A GIVEAWAY!! Now you will have a chance to win all the fabrics I used to make your own Sunset Quilt Top by clicking here!

 

Good Luck Makers! 

 

Till next time,

 

Jannelle