art gallery fabrics

Get to know Shannon from Shannon Fraser Designs

Hello, my fellow fabric lovers! I’m super thrilled to be guest posting here today. In fact, I’ll be guest posting over the next several weeks with some fun projects, inspiration, and tips to share with you.

But first, let’s get to know one another a little 😊

Hi! I’m Shannon. I’m the modern quilt pattern designer and maker behind Shannon Fraser Designs. I’m based out of Montreal, Canada and you can usually find me stitching away in my home studio with my hair in a top knot, sipping copious amounts of coffee all while hanging out with my loyal sewing companion – Pips – my cat!

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We’ve already established we’re mutual fabric enthusiasts 😉 And that’s exactly where my journey with sewing and quilting started.

I loved fabric, I just needed to figure out what to do with it – ha!

So, I got to sewing. Teaching myself one project at a time. Diving in and just figuring it out as I went along. I eventually started selling my handmade aprons, bags, and cushions. That is until I stumbled upon a YouTube video on how to make half-square triangles, or HSTs, as I’ve fondly come to know them as. Yes, lots of acronyms to get familiar with when first exploring the quilting world. But, oh what a wonderful world it is.

One HST block leads to another, and before I knew it, I was well on my way to creating my first quilt top.

This was back in 2015 and I haven’t looked back! To say I’m hooked would be an understatement. I just felt like I found my creative home.

There is so much to explore and learn that it can be a little overwhelming.

Been there before too, huh?!

Yeah, this journey of sewing and quilting has been a series of highs and lows as I continue my exploration and try new things.

This is why I started designing my own quilt patterns to share unique designs that are explained in a way to make them beginner-friendly.

When I started, I knew nothing about fabric companies or fabric designers. And what a world it is to explore!

It can be a little intimidating to get to know the different brands and stay on top of all the different fabric collections available for us to play with.

But that’s the beauty – there is so much textile goodness for us to explore that we’ll never be out of creative inspiration!

ShannonFraserDesigns.PlaytimeQuilt.P6Playtime Quilt

You probably already know this, but not all quilting cotton are created equal. As I tried new fabrics out, I realized that while they’re all listed as 100% cotton they all feel a little different. And I absolutely adore the feel of Art Gallery Fabrics. They’re so silky soft. I remember getting my Playground fabrics from Amy Sinibaldi for the Playground Blog Hop and I was amazed at how soft they felt. I kept petting the stack! Ha! You know you do it too 😉

This is taking me back to the first blog hop I ever participated in and can I just say how nervous I was!

I felt honored that Amy trusted me with her fabrics enough to design the Playtime Quilt.

Everything Amy designs steal my heart, but I have a soft spot for this collection as it had me reminiscing about my childhood and taking a trip down memory lane – love when that happens! You can read more about that project here

I couldn’t get enough of the Playground collection and used the scraps to create the Spring Lilacs quilt. Proof that fabric scraps are worth holding onto!

ShannonFraserDesigns.SpringLilacsQuilt.P4Spring Lilacs Quilt

After that first introduction to AGF, I was hooked. Hooked on the feel of the fabric – ‘cause, let’s face it, we’re in this for the tactile feel as much as for the final quilt, right?! And there’s something about the silkiness of the cotton that I can’t get enough of.

Which is why I was so in when Amy asked me to play with her Sonata fabric collection. This time I went for a modern table runner using the Modern Aztec pattern. Super cute and practical – love those kinds of projects! Don’t you?

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Sonata Modern Aztec Table Runner

My second ever blog hop happened to be for the one and only Pat Bravo! I have a true love for Scandinavian style and her Heartland collection has all those yummy Scandi vibes. There was a shipping mishap with my fabric bundle landing in an entirely different country! Since my original design idea wasn’t possible under the new tight timeline, the Winter Star quilt was born! As much as I love that baby quilt, I was disappointed not to get to make a full-size quilt. So, when the original fabric shipment showed up unannounced, I decided to make the Plus Infinity quilt for my husband. Lucky him, as he just adores owls and was completely smitten with the collection.

ShannonFraserDesigns.HeartlandWinterStarQuilt.P1Heartland Winter Star Baby Quilt

ShannonFraserDesigns.HeartlandPlusInfinityQuilt.P1Heartland Plus Infinity Quilt

Here’s where it gets fun, though.

Art Gallery Fabrics offers lots of versatility in their collections and I can go from soft, girly and whimsical to bold, graphic and colorful in a nanosecond! My Flight Plan quilt is a great example of that! I used their Geometrical Bundle-Up which instantly appealed to my love of saturated color and bold geometrical shapes.

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Geometrical Flight Plan Quilt

I love bold color, but I remember thinking “is this too much?”. Which was quickly followed by “Nah, go bold or go home, Shannon!”. Ha!

That motto is showcased in my House of Cards quilt which features the trimmings leftover from my Flight Plan quilt. I love using those little extra bits to let loose and just play. It gives me a chance to jump between more structured quilt projects (i.e. using a pattern) and what I call my ‘freedom sessions’ of improv quilting just using scraps. It’s two completely different quilt journeys and each appeals to different sides of my creativity.

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House of Cards Modern Improv Quilt

There’s nothing demure or delicate about this one, but it’s an instant shot of happiness when I look at her.

So, that’s me – a textile lover who stumbled upon quilting, can’t get enough of bold colors and graphic designs and is known to stop by their fabric cabinet to just pet her stash and get some quilty inspiration.

I’ve been working on a fun project behind the scenes that I’ll finally get to share with you next week!

In the meantime, you can catch some sneak peeks over on Instagram @shannonfraserdesigns

xo

Shannon

 

 

 


DIY Reusable Tote Bags

Hi Makers! 

My name is Trisha. I’ve joined AGF in December 2019 and so far my experience has been very enjoyable. The best part is being surrounded by creative people every day. As well as learning more about the sewing community. I’ve always had some sort of exposure to it by working at Fabrics & Crafts store when I was younger and from my grandmother having her own tailor shop back in the old days.  Some further background info about me, I was born and raised here in South Florida. I have a bachelor’s in Graphic Design so I have a deep love for anything art related. Music, Fashion, and Film are my main sources of inspiration. The most sewing I can do is just basic hand sewing. I love modifying my clothes or patching a hole up every now and then. There’s something therapeutic about it. But guess what! I received my first sewing machine this past Christmas, so I’m super excited to boost my skills in sewing.  

 

For my first blog post, I want to talk about living a more sustainable lifestyle. If you've been aware, our beautiful planet Earth has been in a not so great condition lately. So I’ve made it one of my resolutions for 2020 to be more earth-conscious.  There are so many ways to implement sustainability in our lives. One of the popular practices I’ve been seeing right now is the usage of metal or paper straws instead of plastic. Be on the lookout to see your straw options at your favorite coffee shop. I got my portable metal straw sitting in my Amazon cart already. Big or small any act of sustainability helps out this big blue planet we call home! 

 

An area I’m super interested in practicing sustainability specifically, is in what I wear and use. Which brings me to put the spotlight on the new AGF Pinterest board that consists of 20 free patterns for reusable tote bags. It’s a simple eco-friendly alternative from using plastic and paper bags. If you’ve noticed, some stores don't carry bags or they charge extra if you need one. This is where having a reusable tote bag comes in handy in our everyday lives. You can take it with you on your days that are jam-packed with errands, or you can even make multiple bags for those days you need to do grocery shopping.  Did I also mention that our fabrics are Oeko-tex certified? This means they are free of toxic dyes & harsh chemicals making them good for you, and for the earth.

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In this Pinterest board, you’ll find patterns featuring fabrics from various AGF collections, as well as different substrates. The beloved lemon tote bag pictured below only took 2 hours to make which is great for sewing beginners such as myself. The fabric used on the tote bag is “Yuma Lemons Mist” in Canvas designed by Bari J. Any fabric from our Canvas collection would be great to use to support heavy loads of items in your tote bag like a bag full of lemons!

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Another great beginner tote bag to make would be our “Noise” pattern (pictured left below). For sewists who feel like their skills are in between beginners and advanced the “Sweet Melon” tote (pictured right below) would be a fun pattern to try! 

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For sewists looking for more of a challenge, I recommend trying our “Artsy Tote”, “Shibui” and “Alamo Tote” patterns (Pictured left to right). There’s a reusable tote for everyone!

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If your resolution is to live a more sustainable lifestyle, as a maker, what else would you want to create to help achieve this important resolution? And If you’re already practicing that lifestyle I would love to hear your tips! I’m ready to put my sewing machine to work for the sake of earth!

 


Celebrating Nature's Beauty: Earthen Fabrics

Earthen_banner_600pxWelcome to a new decade, fabric lovers! Can you believe it's the year 2020? That sounds like something very far in the future, yet here we are still making beautiful handmade things. I hope everyone had a lovely holiday and is ready for a fresh start! I've been seeing a lot of new sewing challenges for this year, the most popular being sewing 20 projects in 2020—what a clever challenge! I'd love to start that challenge as well, especially since I will have my hands on all upcoming collections for AGF. Now, I am excited to start the year with the first lookbook release of the year! 

Introducing Katarina Roccella's latest collection, EARTHEN! These fabrics really hit home for me because it's inspired by the beauty of nature that surrounds us. Nowadays we have been aware of what we've been doing for the planet, such as being a little more self-conscience on what we throw away and buy to try to make the earth a better place. This group of fabrics is an ode to life on our beautiful planet, painted in earthy tones, enriched with imprinted textures.Earthen Fabric 1 copy*Available in 16 cotton prints

Earthen Fabric 1 copy*Available in 2 rayon prints

Earthen Fabric 23 copy*Available in 3 knit prints

Earthen is filled with tons of substrates to fit all your sewing needs! Having multiple options from knits, rayon, and quilting cotton, you can create just about anything from garments, accessories, home decor, and quilts. The colors of this collection are some of my favorites because it has a nice balance between cool and warm colors, which makes it versatile for any season. If you are looking for more sewing inspiration make sure to check out the lookbook below! 

Earthen Fabric 1 copyDOWNLOAD FREE QUILT PATTERN

Earthen Fabric 1 copy
Back to a regular schedule because the giveaways are back on the blog! Make sure to share this giveaway link to anyone, because as long as they have an email, they will be able to enter! So hurry and enter for a chance to win an FQ bundle of Earthen fabrics.

To enter our giveaway, just click here and enter your info! 

Giveaway ends Friday, January 10th, 2020 Good luck!   WINNER HAS BEEN CHOSEN! CONGRATS TO ELIZABETH BOLTON! Please check your email. 

*Once you have entered the giveaway it's normal for your information to disappear. To confirm your entry check your email for confirmation and approve it. By entering our giveaway, you'll be automatically signed up for our newsletters. Don't worry, we don't spam!

 As always, let me know what you'd love to create with this collection or if you have any 2020 sewing resolutions. Thank you all for following me along with the blog and for everyone that leaves comments, it means so much to me! I am looking forward to showing you what's in store here at AGF.

Until next time,

Happy Sewing! 

- Jannelle