Hey there, makers!
I hope you're having a fab week so far! First off, I want to thank all of you for always sharing your beautiful projects with us. It's truly inspiring! You all keep us passionate about sewing, quilting, and being all around creative. This is why we started the Instagram contest the AGF Makers Spotlight. We want to give all of you the opportunity to showcase anything you make with our fabrics.
Today, we're featuring the fourth winner of this contest and she's saying hello all the way from Helsinki, Finland! Let's give Saija a round of applause for submitting a beautiful quilt made with the lovely floral fabrics from Garden Dreamer by Maureen Cracknell! We had the opportunity of getting to know Saija through a quick interview. Check it out to learn all about her project, the things she loves, and her tip to taking beautiful Instagram pictures. ;)
1.Hi Saija! Can you tell us a little about yourself?
Hi! I’m Saija. I live in Helsinki which is Finland’s capital. It’s nice to live here but I wouldn’t mind to have little bit warmer climate. I have two sons, a daughter and a husband. Our sons have moved to their own apartments but our daughter lives still with us. My husband and I work in our own grocery store. We have been working together for 25 years and yes, we are still married! Other hobby of mine is running. We have a group of four women and we travel abroad once or twice a year to join running events. I sit a lot when I sew so exercise is a good balance. I also love basketball. My daughter plays and watching her games is the best entertainment in the world.
2. How did you begin sewing/ quilting and what do you love about the craft?
Sewing has been part of my life since I was a kid. In school I chose sewing lessons instead of home economics. When my kids were little I sewed almost all their clothes. About twenty years ago I joined a beginner’s quilting class. After that class I knew quilting is something I really love. Quilting is like therapy to me. It cheers me up when I’m down and brings me a lot of joy. I’m not good at drawing nor painting but with colorful fabrics I can be an artist too. I often give my quilts as presents to my friends and family. There is much more meaning to the gift when you put some effort into it.
3. Can you tell us all about your quilt, the pattern you used and why Garden Dreamer by Maureen Cracknell was perfect for this project?
I used is Emma Jean Jansen’s Rain Drop pattern. It is a very good pattern if you don’t want to cut your beautiful fabrics into tiny pieces. I wanted to make happy and warm looking quilt so Garden Dreamer fabrics were just perfect choice for it. On the fabrics there are small and big flowers and that’s why I call this quilt “Flower rain”. This is a new color combination for me and it looks stylish and modern. I put the quilt on the wall of my sewing room. It looks really good there, even better than in the pictures.
4.We are completely inspired by your instagram account! How would you describe your sewing style and what are some things that inspire you?
I think my sewing style is quite simple, modern and clear. I put a lot of focus on the coloring. Colouring is more important than the pattern. Sometimes I make something very modern but sometimes I feel like to make romantic and petite things. I don’t follow one style strictly but I make things that pleases my eye and feels good in the moment.
Inspiration comes from everywhere, books, magazines and beautiful fabrics. Also instagram community gives a lot of good ideas. I really need more hours to my day to make all the quilts I want to.
5. Besides your amazing quilts and projects, the pictures of them are amazing. Do you have any tips for makers who want to take better photos of their projects?
Thank you! I take photos with a camera and with a phone. I don’t know if I’m the best person to give tips on photography because half of the time I don’t know what I’m doing myself. I take so many pictures that there always has to be at least one good one. For me the most important thing when taking pictures is the lighting. It’s the most challenging thing especially inside and on the dark winter days. If it’s a gray day I take pictures near a window. Usually I take many pictures in different corners and from various angles, then I choose the best one. To take better pictures my advice would be to just start playing with your camera. There is so much to learn of photographing and with hands on work you learn the best.
6. How did you discover AGF and do you have any collection you’re excited to sew with next?
I have admired AGF fabrics for a long time. The quilt fabric selection is very limited in Finland and no one sells AGF fabrics here. I took part to A Spoonful Sugar’s Lisa’s competition and I won a bundle of Amy’s Playground fabrics. Then I really found AGF and truly fell in love with the fabrics. I like all of the collections so it’s hard to pick just one but the soft colors of Ethereal Fusions caught my eye.
I’m looking forward to working with fabrics that I won! Thank you!
I hope you enjoyed getting to know Saija! If you love her work make sure to follow Saija on Instagram at @saija_elinia. Don't forget to share all your projects made with AGF under the hashtag #AGFMakersSpotlight for a chance to win some fabrics and be featured on the blog. We choose the winner the last day of each month. :)
As always, stay creative and thanks for inspiring!