Thursday, May 1, 2014

Featured #battgirls (May2014) - The Quilt Studio/ Designs by Karen Gibbs

Meet fabric and pattern designer Karen Gibbs. Her passion in quilting.. Bargello! Check her out on Craftsy as she teaches you how easy this technique is. 

Karen started quilting when she worked as a sweater and textile designer for a clothing manufacturer. She would graph out holiday sweaters, giving the movement of color, similar to the way bargello is created. Now, the bargello quilts she creates uses bargello in sections or blocks of the quilts adding texture and movement, drawing the eye into that area.

Madison's Star
Her Madison's Star Quilt screams with vibrancy as many bargello quilts do and is only rivaled by the dramatic flair of a special 14 year old the quilt is named after! With the ease of strip sets, with a nod to traditional lonestar piecing, it's a dynamic quilt! Karen chose to use Quilters Dream Poly Select. She loves how it doesn't add weight to the quilt- which in a bargello, is really important with all those seams! 

Madison's Star close up

Textures are fun to freemotion with bargello and the Dream Poly Select allows enough "poof" around the stitching to show the design that compliments the quilt.

Argyle Style
Loving the Madison's Star but not quite ready to commit? Try it Argyle Style!  In this version you'll use precut strips (same layout as the star) BUT no Y seams! Using the Poly Select gives this quilt great background texture as well.

Karen's love for fabrics:

Like to experiment with fun fabrics? Well, you and Karen have something in common. Her favorite....Shannon Fabrics Cuddle Collections. You too can create these quilts by simply picking up your favorite style of Cuddle Fabric and Karen's Tilting at Windmills or Radiating Americana patterns. See her experience with these projects on her blog.

Radiating Americana
Tilting at Windmills

Karen's tips when quilting with Cuddle on the longarm:

* Use a thin lightweight batting like the Dream Poly Request (loft). Cuddle fabric is super heavy so any batting heavier might make your quilt feel like an x-ray protection shield! Because the Dream Poly Request stabilizes the stretchiness of the Cuddle, this allows for fun quilting options! 

*Try using open motifs when quilting with Cuddle on the top and back.

Karen's love of batiks:

This lucky duck was fortunate enough to travel with Anthology Fabrics as staff on the Bali Expedition Tour for 10 days! While there, she was able to experience the batik process. She currently has over 200 batik designs in stores that she has created for them! Pretty cool adventure if you ask us. :)

Pittsburgh Spring Quilt Market w/ Karen:

Have some fun with Karen in booth #450

For more details on demos, giveaways, sample sprees & schoolhouses, head on over to The Quilt Studio.

Keep up with The Quilt Studio/Designs by Karen Gibbs

Google+: designsbykarengibbs

Well..... are you grabbing your keys and running to your local quilt shop? If so, don't forget to share, remember the search for future #battgirls will continue. We can't wait to see your ideas! 

Looking forward to your submissions. :)
~The original

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