Fabric & Pattern Collections & Books
Where can I buy your fabric lines?
There are many wonderful stores around the globe that sell my fabrics both online and on land. My fabrics are not sold at mass retailers, but at independent retailers. Please use Westminster Fibers' find page for some help on finding those online and brick & mortar locations.
I've heard you have a monthly fabric club, can you tell me more about it?
Yes! In January of 2014, I began creating little stacks of my fabrics, all from various collections, just for my own personal inspiration. As I shared them there was interest to make them available for sale. They are simply inspired by the mood of the month and I always write up a little list of images and ideas that helped conjure the palette. If you'd like to join the simple risk-free process of getting a little stack of beauty every month read more info here!
Is your Bohemian (or other out-of-print) fabric collection still available?
It's a sad truth that my fabric lines go out of print, although I see small cuts for sale popping up here and there every now and then online and elsewhere. I'm sure you've thought of this, but do an internet search or you might have some luck on etsy.com, etc. While I appreciate all the emails asking about these lines and how much you need them in your life, I am likely no better at finding it than you are. I have worked with Westminster Fibers to begin reprinting some old favorite here and there.... so stay tuned.
I have one of your books and I need some help with a pattern, is there an Errata page?
You bet, here is a link to Seams To Me help. We are updating our files for the few corrections necessary for Handmade Beginnings and Anna Maria's Needleworks Notebook. They will be located here soon!
I'm a retailer, how can I sell your fabrics and patterns in my store?
Please see our wholesale page for product listings and simple process information to becoming a stockist. And thanks!
Can I make a small amount of items from your fabric and then sell or donate them?
Yes, you certainly may! I just ask that while you may say that it is made from fabric designed by me, that you make it clear that your are the maker of the goods. And thanks!
Can I make items for sale using your sewing patterns (free or purchased patterns)?
My sewing patterns are intended only for personal use and not for the production of goods for sale, in any quantity. Thanks for respecting my original copyrighted designs!
I am a manufacturer, can I purchase your fabric to mass produce items?
Yes, you may, and please let me know too, I would love to share the finished product. Fabric orders for manufacturing need to be taken through Westminster Fibers since I do not distribute the good myself. Please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Can I use your fabric designs or copy them to decorate my website or promote my own goods?
I appreciate that you like my art work but I am the sole copyright holder of all the originally created designs on all of my fabrics and therefore you are unable to use or reproduce the images in whole or in part to promote your own goods without express written consent from me. If you are hoping to use my designs in order to help sell items made from my materials, please just email me for permission first! And p.s. I do share promotional image downloads of each collection for you if you are selling my fabrics, just click here.
What are the care recommendations for the Oil Cloth fabrics? And are they safe for family use?
I recommend washing the oil cloth fabrics in cold water on a gentle cycle, with a gentle detergent and hang to dry. You may use a relatively cool iron on the non-slick side of the oil cloth for pressing. Our oilcloth (which are more accurately described as laminated cottons) are PU coated and phthalate-free. They are therefore free of the traditional chemicals which are found to be in the heavier non-fabric oilcloths.
Can you tell me about where and how your fabrics are produced and whether the material or their production is eco-friendly, or anything about the working conditions of those who produce it?
My fabrics, as well as all Westminster/Free Spirit Fabrics, are manufactured at mills in Korea. While I can't offer specifics on the questions you ask (because I have no in-depth knowledge), I imagine that the team at Westminster would be happy to answer your questions as well as they can. Westminster is the part of the larger Coats and Clark conglomerate and has been a very well respected name in the fibers industry for more than two centuries (if memory serves me !). While I can expect and hope for the best of conditions for every individual and environment that touches the fabric I've designed, ultimately none of these decisions are mine but Westminster's. I am a freelance designer, although of course, I have the highest of social expectations for any product that bares my copyright. As my design studio grows, I am becoming increasingly conscious of the manufacture of the items that I design and have myself started asking more questions of all my manufacturers. Thank you so much for sharing my concerns. Please contact Westminster Fibers for more information: 1-866-907-3305
Would you like to see pictures of items I've made from your fabrics?
Yes please! In fact, if you really want to show off you can upload your pictures to one of many flickr groups that I host just for this occasion! Visit the fabric page to link onto several fabric collection groups to see what other clever folks have made with these fabric lines. I host other groups as well for my book, and patterns which will always be linked on my blog. Happy sewing!
website & blog
Can I subscribe to your blog via email?
Yes! Visit the blog and look for the email signup prompt on the upper left sidebar.
Can I use the photographs on your website or blog?
Please email me for permission to do so first and I will ask that you always link the credit back to my blog or website.
Can I locate your free PDF patterns at my website or blog?
Not without my explicit written permission. You do not own the copyright to my content, and regardless of it being freely accessed, it is not freely hosted. You may link to a post that I have written on my blog for the pattern or link to my MAKE page. But PLEASE DO NOT locate my content on your site.
Thank you for respecting my copyright and please let me know if you have questions: email@example.com
What kind of camera do you use to take the pictures on your sites?
As of the middle of October 2007 I've been using a Canon Digital SLR EOS 40D. I love it. I also take a lot of photos these days with my Samsung Gallery S3 phone.
Products & Commissions
Can you tell me how to order from your shop and what forms of payment you accept?
You bet! You can go to my SHOP info page to get all those questions and more answered!
Do you have any free patterns for download?
Yes I do! You can find them linked on my MAKE page.
Do you take commissions for paintings or quilts?
Sorry, while I would love to, I can't take any commissions at this time. I do sell one of a kinds in our online Rummage sale every summer, and an occasional rotating group os small batch goods through Craft South.
Do you hand-quilt your quilts or send them out?
I do both, but more and more these days I have been trying to handquilt all that I can. I simply love the process of it, and the squishy-soft feel of the finished quilts too.
business and life
How did you become a fabric designer, any tips?
Essentially I was already designing other lines of goods and while exhibiting my designs at a trade show called Surtex, I was approached by the wonderful Donna Wilder of Free Spirit Fabric and the rest is history. There are many designers, artists, quilters and even celebrities who each have a different story to tell about how they started, so there is no one way to do it. Just research (the internet is such an amazing tool) the companies that you like and find out what their submission guidelines are. Work on a portfolio, send it to them and be patient. You will almost never get a call immediately even if its amazing art, because they have a company to help run. Be persistent, find your niche, and don't copy anyone. You're too good for that!
Do you have any tips on how to get started designing products?
A degree in design certainly doesn't hurt but that's not the whole story. I think that you really have to research and understand the market that you are interested in designing for and the internet is a wonderful place to do that. Find out which trade shows facilitate the happenings in the particular industry that you are interested in and try to attend them to see what its all about and if you see yourself as having something new to offer it. The first show that I exhibited my design work in was Surtex, and its really good for those who are just starting out. But there are also people who continue to do that show year after year. There is also the Licensing Show, Printsource, and a slew of others. All the marketing and sales that happens in the sewing industry usually happens at the Quilt Market. There is nothing stopping you from entering any of these markets, just arm yourself with the knowledge of how to go about it through research and that will better help you see where you fit in...and whether you even want to! Go for it!
What kind of college degree do you have?
How did you get a book deal?
The publishers of my book came across my website and blog and asked me to write one. That's pretty much it. If I had information about how to get a book deal, I would offer it, but I wasn't actually trying at the time so I wouldn't know.
Do you have any employees?
I have been so fortunate to employ a lovely group of women, some in the past, some presently, some ongoing for specific projects, but all of them are dear to me so they are mentioned here: Allie Murphy (studio assisting, graphic design, online store management, modeling), Juliana Horner (order processing, customer service, modeling), Holly Craig (business consulting), Alexia Abegg (pattern editing, test sewing, sample sewing, modeling), Pierrette Abegg (studio assistant, graphic design, online store management, modeling), Brittney Anderson (sample sewing), Crista Hooven (interning-studio help), Anna Johnson (interning-studio help).
How the heck do you raise such a big family and manage your own business?
I'm not sure that I have a helpful or very informative answer on that one. It's something I get asked very often and the simplest way I can answer it is to say that I have been blessed with a very loving and supportive husband, and my kids understand that I have some dreams too. They are always first, but the reality of a busy household, let alone throwing a business into it, is that some days are hectic and others are bliss. Luckily my work is very visual and they can enjoy what I do, understand it and even take part in it. If I could mention a few things about my personality and way of life that might be insightful, I would say that: I work quickly and decisively; I like hopping around from one thing to another; I am not bothered by dust; I barely watch television; we include the kids in the housework as a way to teach them and spend time with them; I encourage them to help each other when I am occupied; I have many studio tasks that I do with children underfoot and some where that's not possible, which is where that amazing husband and several other friends, family and neighbors come in. I am very blessed!
Are you Greek Orthodox, and can you tell me more about that?
I am very fortunate to have been born into an Orthodox Christian home and that is a blessed way of life that we continue in our family. The best resource for learning more about the Orthodox Faith is by reading information at the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese website.