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Thursday, March 7, 2013

HMQG Giveaway - Heather Ross

Sandwiching Heather







One of the reasons I went to QuiltCon was to attend lectures.  I really wanted to hear more from my favorite designers.  I love knowing what motivates them and how they fuel their creative process. I spoke with and begged swag from a few of my favorite designers, quilters and other general modern movement gurus that were at QuiltCon and am happy to announce the HMQG After QuiltCon Giveaway!  Heather Ross will be the first inspiration for this new series because she has offered signed & doodled copies of both of her books for us!  We will be giving away one copy each of Weekend Sewing and her new book Prints.  (this one was sold out at QuiltCon before she even got to her Stitch Lab book signing so I can't wait to see it - here are cute candid shots of Heather graciously running out of books )

I really like Heather Ross's sweet & quirky designs so her lecture entitled "My Fabric Design ProcessFrom Inspiration to Finished Photoshop Files" appealed to me.  I am familiar with Photoshop and thought this was going to be a technical talk.  Heather surprised me when she began her lecture at QuiltCon with an essay about her background and naturalist point of view.  She had an extraordinary childhood roaming around the backwoods of Vermont.  Ross shared themes of families, sense of place and her love of nature.  Then she intertwined these elements into her design process and demonstrated them with samples from her work in Photoshop. She also debuted her new line Briar Rose which will be released April 1st.

The Dome
When she was very young, her parents built a geodome on the top of a mountain where the family lived until deeming the structure a failure.  "The Dome" as it was called was only their home for about a year but it defined her as well as gave her a sense of security and ownership. It was their Dome.  She isn't sure if there was a small fire, structural failure or if they just gave up - but they moved out of the geodome knowing they had tried something special and were brave because of that.  Years later when she went back to the site she was only able to find a monstrous double sink that was too heavy to drag away.  Later, in cool twist she ended up asking the man who bought the old homestead if she could come back and get the sink because she couldn’t forget about it.  She wanted to build her kitchen around it. 

She discussed her time with her extended family.  Her immediate family lived close by her other relatives but they seemed a tiny bit ostracized perhaps because of their geodome.  She described how the other kids had moms in shiny station wagons and dads with well-paying jobs; revealing how she felt a bit different from her cousins.  She came from The Dome – land of unplanned kittens and head lice instead of ballet lessons and excellent public schools.  But she was also clear that it was okay to be different.  Maybe even great.  Maybe even brave!  I grew up with a family that was also a little off and I have grown to embrace those differences so I completely relate to her point of view.
New Home

Heather loves making tents in her bean plants and she talked about different homes and how their sense of place creates security.  The different homes she talked about were very interesting.  There was a neighbor when she was growing up squatting in a tin & plastic shanty and she mentions how his home was built to withstand the elements perhaps better than her uncles’ stone homes that were slowly eroding   There were also lots of interesting photos of the abandoned Catskill home that she and her husband recently purchased to remodel from the ground up.  This is the house that will get the old-worldly sink.

Owl and Pussycat
Next she spoke about her design process. She showed several slides of her fabric and gave examples of how she sometimes takes several designs that she isn’t happy with and mashes them together to make one good one.  She used several examples of her Owl and Pussycat fabric line showing how it evolved over time and edits.  Heather also explains why she has a fondness for these two fairy tale characters - she really likes that the only basis for their friendship is that they like the same food. This makes sense to her and she realizes her own relationship is based on similar characteristics. 
Unicorn Wallpaper

Heather's new book Prints  comes with a DVD of reproducible artwork for more than 50 of her most popular prints. She provides step-by-step instructions for 20 craft projects using the prints—everything from sea turtle stationery to a shower curtain covered with swirling mermaids.  She showed us this cool unicorn wallpaper idea and has more info about it on her blog.  She often mentioned Spoonflower and encouraged her audience to take our ideas, use her as inspiration and just go for it -- print, sew, wallpaper, whatever. 

We also got a sneak peek at her new fabric line - Briar Rose with Windham Fabrics.  It was full of her usual whimsy, charm and fresh spring colors. Heather has generously offered to donate some of her fabric to us for a Giveaway when Briar Rose ships.  

The lecture was incredibly insightful.  It is rare to hear someone speaking so clearly from their heart.  I left the lecture hall feeling really blessed to have been there and brave, like her!

Please comment here for a chance to win either Weekend Sewing  or Prints.   I will pick a random winner for each book on March 17th.  Make sure to follow our blog because there will be 5 more HMQG giveaways coming up. 


Briar Rose
 

70 comments:

  1. Excellent post!
    Mmm, a Heather Ross sandwich!

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  2. Great info in this post! Thank you.

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  3. Thanks for posting this. I missed that lecture so it's great to read a summary!

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  4. I love this story, too. Well written, and makes me want to attend a lecture by Heather.

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  5. I've admired Heather for years, this article just helped solidify that. I've made something out of every one of her fabric lines and can't wait to try out Briar Rose. Heather is an inspiration and I'd love to meet her one day.

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  6. I love Heather Ross's work! and I especially love those frogs that are coming out. I can't wait!

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  7. I love this post D! I'm so glad you had such a wonderful time at QuiltCon. :)

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  8. I too enjoyed QuiltCon but missed Heather Ross's lecture. Am a bit jealous, but there was so much to enjoy at QuiltCon. Heather's creations bring joy and delight to all of us. Thanks for this great article on your Heather Ross Adventure! Maybe next time for me...

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  9. i loved learning more about heather ross's background, and her new line looks adorable!

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  10. Great post, can't wait for Briar Rose!

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  11. Such a great story AND you re-told it so well!
    Thank you(from another "quirky family" braveheart)for sharing this with us.
    I'll be looking for more Heather Ross Adventures!

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  12. Wow, what a fascinating life. I would love to read any one of her books.

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  13. Thank-you for sharing with those of us who didn't get to go to Quilt-Con. Too cool.

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  14. Great story about one of my very favorite designers.

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  15. Wonderful story! Thank you so much for sharing!

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  16. I LOVE Heather Ross!! :) Thanks for the giveaway!

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  17. So enjoyed your post! Hopefully someday I will be lucky enough to meet her!

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  18. Thanks for sharing- how wonderful of Heather to share so much of herself!

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  19. Thank you for the post. Learned a lot.

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  20. How lovely that Heather was so so open and forthcoming with personal detail behind her inspiration and designs. What a lovely lady, and what gorgeous books.....

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  21. Thanks for a very interesting post.

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  22. Really lovely post. Thanks for the great giveaway!

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  23. These sound like marvelous books and I can hardly wait to get my hands on that cute froggy print

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  24. What a great story. Thanks for sharing!

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  25. What a wonderful giveaway!! Thank you!!

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  26. Unfortunately I had to work and wasn't able to attend the QuiltCon lectures, so I am very grateful to get a recap! Thanks for the excellent giveaway!

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  27. oh I love Heather Ross fabric- can't get enough of it!

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  28. Her new book prints sounds great. I like her spoonflower shop, and the site in general for great new modern designs.

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  29. I love your summary of her talk...I feel like I know her better, just from reading it :)

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  30. How lucky for you to be able to attend the lecture!

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  31. Replies
    1. you have good luck with our giveaways so far! keep it up!

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  32. I was lucky enough to see her speak in person at QuiltCon....it was such a great experience :)

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  33. Thanks for sharing this interesting story! And thanks for this giveaway!

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  34. What an amazing, unconventional creative life. It's easy to see where all of her inspiration comes from. What an amazing chance to hear her speak. Thanks for sharing!
    ellen(at)myerly(dot)net

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  35. I would love to win. I recently lost my Prints copy in a fire and need to replace it.
    Thank you

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  36. Ah yes, a geodesic dome. The happy hippy memories. Either of the books would be such a delightful win!

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  37. Thanks for the chance to win. What a great post. I already have weekend sewing so I am hoping for prints :)

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  38. What a wonderful opportunity. Thank you so much for sharing with us!
    Thank you for the chance to win as well :-)

    ktreve (at) hotmail (dot) com

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  39. enjoyed the book reviews ... thanx for the chance to win a copy of either one.

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  40. So bummed I couldn't make it to QuiltCon. I love everything Heather Ross!

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  41. I missed Quilt Con. I would have liked to been there. Maybe next year. Thanks for a chance to win Heather's book!

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  42. Wish I'd been able to hear that lecture, how interesting it sounds!

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  43. What a great story! Thanks for sharing so those of us who could not make it to QuiltCon could enjoy. And thanks for the chance to win!

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  44. What a great post! Very interesting learning more of a fave designer!!!!

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  45. I would love to win Heather's book "Prints", I love the idea of designing fabric. Thanks for the give away!

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  46. Wow, what a great story! Both books look amazing, thanks for offering this giveaway

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  47. i've been dying to get "prints"! i loved reading this post, and i wish i could have been at QC to hear her in person. i'm a huge fan!

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  48. Love all things Heather Ross! Thanks for the giveaway!

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  49. Oh, I would love to attend a lecture or workshop with Heather - everyone I have talked to who has heard her speak is that she is wonderful! I loved your post, and I would love a copy of her books. Thanks so much for the chance.

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  50. I wasn't able to attend any lectures at Quiltcon, so it was wonderful to read this! Thank you!

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  51. Can't wait for that clover fabric!

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  52. I'd love the weekend sewing book!!!

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  53. I so wish I could have gone to QuiltCon. I definitely would have wanted to hear Heather Ross, she is amazing at what she does both in designing and narrating the story of her life and creativity! Thanks for the giveaway opportunity

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  54. The Weekend Sewing Book sounds awesome.

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  55. Thank you for the lovely post. Being able to attend a lecture by her would be a dream.

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  56. I already have HR book and it is gorgeous! So I keep my fingers crossed to win bundle of fabrics from her new line:)

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  57. Great story! Thanks for the giveaway opportunity!

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  58. I would love a chance to win. Enjoyed your story.

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  59. Great story. Thanks for the giveaway!

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  60. Wonderful article. Thank you for a great giveaway.

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  61. Great article. Thanks for the giveaway.

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  62. Great coverage on the seminar! Heather Ross's prints are adorable!

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  63. Oh I'd love the Prints!:) great post, I enjoy reading it very much:D

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  64. Great post! Great giveaway! Thank you!

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