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Meet Amy Ellis

May 9, 2013 in Stitchin Women

AmyMeet Amy Ellis!

Although her mom (a left-handed sewer) refused to teach her to sew “backwards”, Amy Ellis still chose an unconventional quilting route.  Amy’s known for her modern quilting techniques and trendy style. In fact, she has contributed to numerous publications and has written three modern quilting books. Amy has sewn for years using the Baby Lock Melody, and now she’s decided to take on a new quilting challenge—longarming. She recently received the Baby Lock Crown Jewel 18-inch longarm. As she gets acquainted with her new machine, she’ll share projects and tips with all of you, too.

Though the Crown Jewel is her first longarm machine, Amy is very familiar with sewing. She learned the basics when she was about 10 years old in 4-H club. In the beginning, Amy used her sewing skills to make garments, but when she started a family, she wanted to make quilts for her children. Amy quickly caught on to quilting thanks to her garment sewing experience. When she did need help on a technique, Amy would turn to books and eventually found the large online quilting community.

“I just didn’t realize there was a community like that out there,” Amy said. Shortly after discovering this quilting community, Amy created her blog, Amy’s Creative Side.  The blog started in 2008 as a center for connecting with other quilters and sharing easy-to-follow tutorials.  Then in 2011, Amy published her first book, Modern Basics.  Today, followers of Amy’s blog will find all five of her books available for purchase in addition to regularly uploaded tutorials and blog posts.

Now that she uses the Baby Lock Crown Jewel, some of Amy’s posts will revolve around it.  “I’ve quilted on the Melody on and off. It’s hard because it’s small. I like to make bigger, more functional quilts,” Amy said. “My favorite quilt size is 60” x 70”… long enough to cover you on the couch and small enough to quilt on a domestic machine.”

With the Crown Jewel, the quilting process will be easier, and though she’s new to longarming, Amy feels good about her new machine. “I’m confident. Actually, my friend let me use hers a bit,” Amy said. “I’ve always enjoyed that layer of texture—it’s difficult on a domestic machine.”

Not only is Amy a regular blogger and author, she is also founder of the online Bloggers’ Quilt Festival and co-founder of the Sewing Summit. However, she did decide to step away from the Sewing Summit after the first year to have more time for her husband and four young children.

The Bloggers’ Quilt Festival is an online fest, and Amy still runs it every year. “It’s different from in-person festivals because you get more of the story behind each quilt,” Amy said. “It’s more than just a little card with information that many people don’t even read.” This year, participating quilters are eligible to win “favorite” in 15 different categories including “Favorite Baby Quilt”, “Favorite Appliqué Quilt” and “Favorite Hand-Quilted Quilt”. Another difference in the online Blogger’s Quilt Festival is that other quilters in the blogging community choose these category winners. There is no set group of judges.

Amy hopes to bring fun, manageable projects to the Totally Stitchin’ community. She loves to share projects that don’t take forever to work on so you can tackle more than one at a time. Her favorite projects are quilts (of course), bags, and other functional projects—the kind you can “carry and show” as she put it. You may see her do a garment from time to time, but according to Amy, it’s likely to be a skirt because garment sewing is very time consuming.

Regardless of what she posts, we’re confident you’ll love Amy’s modern style. You can follow Amy at www.AmysCreativeSide.com and on Facebook.

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