Thursday, January 14, 2021

Brand Ambassador Intro - Tara Sinclair


Our next Brand Ambassador for 2021 is the incredible Tara Sinclair. Her love of fabric and crafting is infectious and we're so excited to have her on board. Learn more about Tara's journey here and make sure to follow her and her Michael Miller projects. 


My name is Tara Sinclair and I am a software consultant by day and bagmaker by night. I have a full-time job working with clients and tailoring a specific software to their needs and doing a lot of documentation. I am also a wife to an incredibly patient and handy man, and a stepmom to an adult daughter. My baby is my fur baby, and we spend a LOT of time together. We live in the busy city of Calgary, AB (Canada) so I am frequently complaining about snow but loving the warm chinooks that pass through.
 

In 2014 I took a beginner quilting class for myself. I was so caught up in being stepmom and working that I needed to find an outlet for myself. I registered for a class, bought a simple sewing machine and fabric, and completed my first quilt in 2 months. I am still exceptionally proud of the quilts I have made to date, but when they started taking months, I looked for little kits to try. I made my first bag from a kit using jelly roll strips, a button on the front and no hardware, which spurred me on to more and more. I have never turned back!


I started taking on the odd custom bag request, but rather preferred making my own versions of patterns I found. Combining unique fabrics, learning different stabilizers and interfacings, and sharing in a community of people eager for knowledge and eye-candy, spurred me on to try more and more projects. It wasn’t long before a bag pattern designer reached out to me to help test her pattern before it was released publicly. I jumped at this amazing opportunity! In my day job, one of the items I do regularly is software testing and documentation, so the pattern testing process was something that came naturally to me. This led to many more pattern designers also requesting my help which introduced me to so many new techniques and pattern styles. I started sharing creations on a weekly basis, which was the birth of UhOh Creations. Bright fabrics, and new patterns were the soul of my new Facebook Page as I created bag after bag (my husband is still hoping I will find new homes for them all).

 

As I started to get to know my quilting community locally and gained experience with bag patterns, I became the local bag-lady (never meant in a mean or negative way). I loved sharing my experience and knowledge with anyone who had questions and Tracy from Purple KATZ Quilting (my local quilt shop) invited to me to do that at her upcoming retreat. I had never attended a retreat before, so had no clue what to expect – and wow was it incredible! At that retreat I taught 38 women how to make the Emmaline Bags Retreat Bag with zipper and frames. All 38 finished their bags successfully and had a great time in the process! Since then, I have shared my bag making experience openly through Facebook, in-person classes and trunk shows for guilds, introducing garment sewers and quilters to the unique world of Bagineering.



Because of my pattern testing and social sharing, I was publicized on a blog for Andrie Designers in a “Meet the Maker” series. I was also lucky enough to have bags displayed at Houston Quilt Market in 2018 to showcase new patterns and fabric lines being released that year. I also collaborated with a talented pattern designer to create the Charlie Holster Bag – my very first pattern! I could never have done it without help, but I got the pattern making bug. The following year, in 2019 I got the kick in the butt that I needed to launch my website and new patterns with a brand-new fabric line being released by a friend of mine. I even got to see Houston Quilt Market myself with my bag patterns featured in that new fabric. What an experience! That was also the year that I co-hosted the Great Alberta Bagineer Getaway – a retreat for 40 bagineers in Calgary, AB. What an incredible experience! In 2020 I was even invited to be a designer with the Bag of the Month Club, which was an incredible honor as I’ve always been a club member and loved every minute of the community and unique designs.

As I learned to sew, I dabbled in some stretchy fabrics for garments, and of course upgraded my sewing machine to play with embroidery. I also invested in an industrial machine to create leather bags and make unique items like the blacksmithing apron for my brother-in-law and sew patches on leather vests for our anti-bullying biker organizations. And with the inspiring quilt designs out there, I’ve come back to my sewing origin by working on a number of bright and vibrant quilts. I also have just learned about diamond dot painting over my recent holidays and how relaxing a project like that can be as I let the creativity percolate. 

 

I currently have an incredibly talented group of testers that I work with on my pattern designs and continue to pattern test for designers that I consider good friends. I do plan to continue to host retreats (once public gatherings are allowed again of course) and continue to share my experiences and knowledge through my website, YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram. Hopefully, I will be able to continue teaching quilters and sewists as I share future designs. 


Be Sure to follow her with the links below to see all the Michael Miller fun she'll be sharing!


Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Brand Ambassador Intro - Julie Burton

We are kicking off 2021 with a whole new batch of amazing Brand Ambassadors. We couldn't be more excited to have these fantastic crafters on board with us and can't wait for you to see their incredible talents. Throughout the next month, we will be introducing each of the new ambassadors right here on our blog and on our social media. Be sure to follow along with us and follow along with them to see their creative and inspiring content.

First up we'd like to introduce Julie Burton! You can follow her at with the following links: 

Hi! I’m Julie Burton of Running Stitch Quilts. I am originally from Texas, but I am currently living in Michigan with my husband, two daughters, and two dogs. 



My favorite thing about living in Michigan is the sewing studio space I have in this house! It has a large window for natural light, the wall space for a 96”x96” design wall, and it is directly across from my daughters play room so I am able to sew while keeping an eye on them. This is my favorite room in the house. Being in here brings me so much joy!



I started quilting in 2014 and have been designing my own patterns nearly as long. One of the first quilts I made was a baby quilt for my best friend. It was a herringbone design made with HSTs. I drew up the design using Microsoft Excel and then counted up the squares and calculated how much fabric I would need. I have since upgraded and improved all of my processes for designing a quilt, but looking back at that first always makes me smile. 



These days, I would say my design style is a mix of modern and traditional. I love traditional blocks and love to challenge myself to see how I can make a traditional block look more modern. 



I am often inspired by nature. We are a military family and have lived in very geographically different places over the last five years. The shapes, patterns, and colors I am drawn to often reflect where we live at the time. 



When I’m not quilting or chasing after my two girls, I love to run. I’ve run one marathon and several half marathons. Last year, I ran a virtual relay across Texas with a group of running buddies. I am very much looking forward to in person races happening again!



I’m super excited to be working with Michael Miller, and I can’t wait to see what the year brings!

Follow Along Here:


Thursday, December 3, 2020

Meet our 2021 Brand Ambassadors!

 Meet our 2021 Brand Ambassadors!

We are fortunate to have six members of the quilting elite joining our Michael Miller family. These quilters, designers and bloggers are tremendously talented. We are so excited that they will be sharing our fabric collections and their enthusiasm for Michael Miller fabrics for the next year. Keep an eye on our blog as we will be posting more detailed information on all of them starting in January.

You can start to follow all of them on social media by clicking their links below

Tuesday, September 15, 2020

APPLY TO BECOME A 2021 BRAND AMBASSADOR!

 ATTENTION QUILTING INDUSTRY DESIGNERS & BLOGGERS

Want to gain exposure while sewing with the best fabric?
APPLY TO BECOME A 2021 BRAND AMBASSADOR!
Michael Miller Fabrics provides bold design, inspires creativity and offers exceptional customer service, all while “Making it Fun!”. Now is your opportunity to join the team as a Brand Ambassador!
What it means to be a Brand Ambassador:

1.    Share your love for Michael Miller Fabrics

2.    Broaden your skill set and explore new techniques in group challenges.

3.    Create buzz around new product launches by featuring Michael Miller fabrics on your blogs and social media platforms.

4.    Include our promo badge on your website and social media.

5.    Tagging @michaelmillerfabrics on posts and using the hashtags #michaelmillerfabrics and #makingitfun.

6.    Provide feedback to our marketing team.

Perks of being a Brand Ambassador:

1.    Free fabric and goodies.

2.    Promotion of you and your brand by sharing your content on our social media channels.

3.    Opportunities for you to be featured on our blog and marketing channels.

4.    Sharing our promo badge and other graphics and images for your posts.

5.    Opportunities for your patterns/projects to be included in our catalogs and marketing materials.

6.    Connections to magazine publications for your projects using Michael Miller fabric.

What we looking for: 
This is the perfect opportunity for those actively building a brand in the quilting industry. We are looking for enthusiastic designers and bloggers to promote our brand and fabric through social media, online or in-person events and social media channels. Our Brand Ambassadors must have active social media outlets, be experienced quilters and engaged in the quilting community

What is required:
Fabric collections will vary and you create your own projects. We will provide all fabric required for program-related projects, plus other goodies. We will promote two campaigns per quarter (8 per year). Ambassadors will make projects and post about them. You may offer free patterns or patterns that you sell commercially. We are looking for posts from the opening reveal of what’s in the box to the final project. Facebook live, Instagram Live, videos and product demos are encouraged.
Ambassadors may be asked to provide projects for our sales reps, Quilt Market and magazine outlets. Ambassadors are expected to actively participate in a private, ambassadors-only, Facebook group and respond to emails. MEETING DEADLINES IS A MUST!
This ambassadorship runs January 1, 2021-December 31, 2021.
If you have questions, please email: susan@michaelmillerfabrics.com.
How to apply:
Click link below and fill out the application. Applicants will be assessed by the marketing team at Michael Miller Fabrics based on your blog content, posting regularity, social media content and photography. Thank you in advance for your application!

THE DEADLINE TO APPLY IS SEPTEMBER 30, 2020.




Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Color, Thread & Free-Motion Quilting Blog Tour

Color, Thread & Free-Motion Quilting Blog Tour

by Susan Emory, Brand Manager, Michael Miller Fabrics

I had lunch with Teri Lucas, as Quilt Market last year and she told me about her book idea on color and quilting. We had a long discussion about fabric, thread, sewing machines and techniques. I knew she was on to something as an artist and a teacher. Well, she didn’t disappoint! 
This book has the perfect title: Color, Thread & Free-Motion Quilting. Teri delves into each, giving quilters of all skill levels permission to make mistakes and learn through practice. 

Michael Miller Fabrics supported her endeavor by supplying Teri with a variety of colors of our high-density solid fabric, Cotton Couture (seen above on the book cover). Cotton Couture’s super saturated color is the perfect canvas to show off your stitching!
I am so impressed with Teri’s explanation of color relationships between fabric and thread. She goes into detail on the rules (and breaking the rules!) of color. Not only does Teri explain the color wheel and why it works, but she goes a step further, demonstrating the marriage of fabric and thread and how the color of each affects the result. Color by color, she shows how different thread colors work with fabric of each color of the color wheel. 
This book is packed with information on color and thread. But, if you have a question about getting started in machine quilting, this book answers it also. Teri is a thread artist and these pages are loaded with images to inspire your quilting – teeny pattern fills, curvy and straight lines, geometric shapes, spirals, bubbles and more. She includes thread weight, needle choices and other tools of the trade to help every quilter improve their machine quilting. 

(Picture used with permission from C&T Publishing)

As you can tell, I love this book (gush, gush). Visit Teri’s website for information on ordering – www.terificreations.com. Teri is giving away an e-copy of Color, Thread and Free-Motion Quilting to one of our readers and we are adding a Cotton Couture Fat Quarter Bundle!


Enter to Win! 
Comment below and tell us your go-to Cotton Couture color and you will be entered to win an e-book of Color, Thread & Free-Motion Quilting AND an 18-piece Cotton Couture Fat Quarter Bundle! Please comment by August 6th to enter. Winner will be chosen by random number generator.
Follow along on the book tour for more chances to win:
Color, Thread & Free-Motion Quilting Blog Tour Schedule

Saturday, June 27, 2020

Peek Into Batiks Monthly Quilt Along 2020 Blocks 1-12

Peek Into Batiks Monthly Quilt Along 2020



Welcome to the Peek Into Batiks Monthly Quilt Along!!!
Starting today we will be posting a block pattern on the last Friday of each month. Visit your local quilt shop and grab your favorite Michael Miller Fabrics Batiks to sew along with us. Fabric requirements are included in the first month's pattern.  


Michael Miller Fabrics' Batik collection is vibrant, unique and features both metallic and non-metallic finishes. With 78 current skus, and many more to come, you are sure to find that perfect design. Stunning multi-colored pineapple, butterfly, hibiscus and golden bamboo are just some of the prints that will make you feel the island breeze. 



BLOCK #1



* We are offering the pattern for this striking quilt with the option of rotary cutting or cutting with your AccuQuilt Go! Fabric Cutter and 8" Qube. Be sure to select the pattern download for your preferred cutting method.


We used the AccuQuilt Go! Fabric Cutter to cut the pieces for this quilt. We were amazed at how quickly we were able to cut the entire project. Also, each piece was perfectly accurate, every time! 


Get started now or join in at any time! Click Links below to download patterns. Happy quilting!

We'd love for you to share your progress as you quilt along! Be sure to tag us.
@michaelmillerfabrics #michaelmillerfabrics #makingitfun #peekintobatiks
If you are using your AccuQuilt Go cutter for, be sure to tag them as well 
@AccuQuilt #AccuQuilt


                               
CLICK LINK TO DOWNLOAD PATTERN                      CLICK LINK TO DOWNLOAD PATTERN












And that's all folks! The Quilt is complete! Thank you all for sewing along with us. We'd love to see your finished quilts. You can e-mail pics to marketing@michaelmillerfabrics or tag us on social media using @michaelmillerfabrics

Monday, April 20, 2020

Project of the Week 4/20/20

PROJECT OF THE WEEK 4/20/20
Michael Miller Monday

Hey fabric fans! While we are all staying safe at home Michael Miller fabrics will be continuing to provide you with fun, inspiring, and creative content. We will be putting out a featured pattern of the week every Monday! You can find the free project instructions on our website! ClICK HERE



This week is SHARE THE LOVE WEEK! We will be focusing on spreading love and cheer with our communities and letting essential workers know how much they are appreciated. Join in by hanging a handmade heart quilt on your doors/windows. Tag #sharethelovequilts We will be posting a collection of pictures on our page!

The featured pattern is the patriotic Heartland Quilt by Wendy SheppardFinished quilt dimensions are 61"x74". It was created using our Bandana Ballad Collection.

Wendy was inspired by the patriotic prints and developed this stunning American Flag block quilt. During times like this, we are reminded how important patriotism is and standing together as a community. 

All week long we will be posting videos about love and appreciation on our "Making it Fun" Youtube channel. We will also have a Facebook Live tomorrow at 2pm EST where Rob Appell shows us how to make fabric heart postcards.


We'd love to see what you're creating. Share your photos with us by posting your creations on social media and tagging @michaelmillerfabrics or e-mailing photos to marketing@michaelmillerfabrics.com 

STAY SAFE! HAPPY SEWING AND REMEMBER TO KEEP #MAKINGITFUN