Throughout August, the Quilter’s Planner team is sharing all about our 2023 Quilter’s Planner designers. Our featured designer today is Christina Lee of Sweet Potato Quilts, who designed the show-stopping Slice of Synchrony quilt.
Because this is her first time designing for The Quilter’s Planner, we asked Christina to tell us a bit more about herself:
I turned to quilting in 2019 as a means to decompress from the social demands of working as a clarinetist of the Boise Philharmonic and elementary school music teacher. The pace of the world around me did not seem to be built for introverts, so I took the initiative in cultivating some quilting time for personal thought and reflection. At the time I did not know why I chose quilting, but I can now see that the idea of cutting up fabric and reconstructing it into something new reflected my desire to explore a new avenue in life.
I feel the most at home when I venture outside of cultural norms and expectations by exploring, experimenting, and playing with new ideas. My goal as a pattern designer is to write patterns that give quilters room to make their own choices. Beyond sizing and the picking and choosing of fabrics, one pattern can yield various unique designs when improvisational piecing is incorporated into interchangeable blocks for quilts. I am currently working on creating a membership program where quilters can access a growing database of these patterns and share their work in a safe and inclusive community.
Even though I turned to quilting as a solitary activity, I somehow managed to make many friends in this community and am so humbled and grateful to get to know other people’s stories and their reasons behind cutting up and sewing fabric together. Thank you so much for being here and reading this and please do not hesitate to say hello on social media or in an e-mail!
The Slice of Synchrony quilt is a high-impact design that gives quilters the opportunity to play with a color gradient.
Here is our interview with Christina:
Tell me about a favorite project you’ve made.
I made a body pillow that can store your scraps, called the “Secret Starry Stash!” You can learn about it and get the pattern for free here: https://www.diaryofaquilter.com/quilted-body-pillow-tutorial/
I love that it is a bigger pillow that you can snuggle with, and that it’s a pretty way to hide your fabric stash.
What are your designing or quilting goals for 2023?
I am putting together a membership program that releases a monthly 18” interchangeable modern block. Each block pattern will give you the option of making 1, 4, 5, 9, or 25 blocks, making it easy to pair with other blocks. My biggest hope is that my membership will foster an inclusive community where members can design their own quilts with the interchangeable blocks, swap blocks, and even donate blocks to make quilts for charity.
What are you making now?
Right now, I am making different sample versions of a mini quilt pattern called, Seek and You Will Shine. This pattern is a part of the 12 Minis in 12 Months 2022, and is designated as the mini quilt pattern for the month of July. By the time these answers are published, the pattern should be available at my website.
How do you deal with a creative rut?
I try to find compassion for myself and relieve myself from any expectation that I need to be ‘on’ or perfect all the time. Sometimes ruts are great for reminding me of that, and are signs that maybe I need to rest or seek inspiration from something else.
Tell us about your other hobbies.
My husband and I recently got our Advanced Openwater certification for scuba diving! I’ve always been terrified at the thought of being underwater (and deep) for prolonged periods of time, but when you are completely buoyant and surrounded by sea life, it’s therapeutic in an other-worldly way. I now often have (pleasant) dreams of being underwater.
Are there any upcoming projects you’ve been working on that you’d like to share with us?
I have been designing, writing patterns, and testing for the blocks in my membership. I plan on opening it August 1st. If anyone is interested, they can sign up at the following link to receive more information and be the first to join! https://view.flodesk.com/pages/6228f4dde4da3a4464c3022e
You can also connect with Christina on her website www.sweetpotatoquilts.com or on Instagram @sweetpotatoquilts.
Slice of Synchrony is found exclusively in the 2023 Quilter’s Planner. Planners go on sale soon, so be sure to sign up for our newsletter to be among the first to know when we open sales!