Thursday, October 25, 2007

Mother Goose & Friends

Yippee! My new quilts, using the fabric I designed for P&B Textiles, will debut tomorrow as Quilt Market kicks off! I had so much fun making quilts using the Mother Goose & Friends fabric. Probably the first thing that hit me when I got the fabric was... "Yikes! You mean I have to CUT this?!!!" I hated to do it... but I also loved being able to create quilts with the fabric. Above is the quilt that P&B is using to market the fabric line; the fabric has 26 different pieces in it, ranging from scatter prints to graceful border prints to tone-on-tones to a pre-printed panel with eight nursery rhymes illustrated on it. Although this is billed as a juvenile print line, most of the fabrics in it are multi-dimensional and can be used in a variety of settings. You'll be seeing more of those ideas in the future -- which is what is so great about a blog: it's a fast way to post photos, ideas, tips, etc. Life is great, isn't it?!

Ladies of the Sea

(c)2007 Susan H. Garman
The newest block-of-the-month that I created is called "Ladies of the Sea." It celebrates some of the greatest ships that have sailed the oceans of the world. There are 16 blocks with ships appliqued on them - and each ship is surrounded by a wreath of vines, branches, or flowers from the ship's native land. The four borders incorporate all of the flowers and leaves that are in the wreaths -- and each corner of the quilt has a mariner's compass on it. This was a wonderful quilt for me to research -- the patterns each contain the history of the ship and describe the flowers, as well as an "icon" that connects the two halves of the wreaths. The icons again reflect something about the ship or the native land of the ship - for example, The Hannah is one of the ship blocks; it was the first ship in George Washington's navy. Washington chartered the schooner to raid the British ships in order to obtain food and supplies for his struggling army of men. The Hannah is surrounded by cherry branches, representing the famed story of Washington's claim that he never told a lie when his father asked him if he had chopped down a cherry tree. The icon joining the two cherry branches is a circle with a green pine tree on it. The pine tree was on the Hannah's flag, along with the words, "An Appeal to Heaven," a phrase taken a famous address to the British that closed with the words, "Appealing to heaven for the justice of our cause."

I'm particularly pleased with this block-of-the-month -- partly because we haven't seen many new Baltimore album style quilt patterns in a while, but also because I spent a considerable amount of time writing and illustrating the instructions so that even a less experienced quilter could make this quilt. Each month's pattern includes a section called "Smooth Sailing" that provides options for simplifying the pattern. I want quilters to believe that every quilt is "do-able" even if they don't yet have a wealth of experience under their belts.

Check your local quilt shop if you are interested in doing this new block-of-the-month, or you can always get it from Quakertown Quilts ( if you want to order it from the shop that manages the distribution of my patterns.

Happy sailing!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Sue Garman Quilts

The great "Houston Quilt Market" opens in two days! I am excited about seeing what is new this year, and my own Mother Goose and Friends collection of fabrics by P and B Textiles will debut at Quilt Market. Wheee!!!! P and B is a great company to work with because they maintain and support their fabric lines over time -- that's great for store owners and customers who wish to re-order bolts.

Blogging is new to me -- I have so much I want to do with this blog, though: sharing new ideas, new patterns, inspiration, and the joy of quilting. I guess I had better get to work so I can do that!