Designer Interview: Stephanie from Loft Creations

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11 comments » fabric, fun, patterns, staff projects

One of the most delightful women we get to work with in our independent designer program is Stephanie.  Stephanie runs a site called Designs by Loft Creations and designs some of the most beautiful patterns we’ve seen. And her photography? Second to none!

Because we adore her so much, we decided to conduct an interview so that all of you may see how wonderful she truly is. We’ve scattered images of some of Stephanie’s designs throughout the interview so that you can see just how talented she is.  We hope you enjoy!

Q: Tell us a little about you, your family and home life and how these are exhibited in your designs or process?

A: Mom is a perfectionist crafter. She insisted I learn to sew from educated teachers. Big mistake. She was more talented than the teachers. After two less than stellar attempts at Home Economics she feared the creative gene skipped generations. I’m a late bloomer as I learned to sew in my 30s while living on a military base in Japan. I wanted to be able to sew simple Halloween Costumes, jammies, etc…for my very young children. My ultimate goal though was to learn to quilt. My husband, Dave, is super supportive and when we plan a vacation he asks if there are any quilt shops I’d like to visit. He’s a keeper. My daughter, Allison, is my pattern formatter, pattern cover designer, patient computer teacher, and color go?to girl. Son James’ only request when I’m making him a quilt is that it’s big enough to completely cover him, is warm enough (I use flannel for quilt backs) and he approves of the colors.

Q: How did you get started designing? What was your first design?

A: I have always been the sort that didn’t want to do or make anything that looks like everyone else. When I was still a new quilter I altered patterns to my taste. I think the very first quilt I made totally on my own was one I call Murphy’s Law. If there was a mistake to be made, I made it. I kept running to the quilt store to replace what I’d cut incorrectly. I still have the quilt. It was a learning experience and confidence booster.

My very first published pattern was The West Linn Bag. Still my favorite bag and still the one I carry most often.

Q: How has your designing over the years evolved since your first pattern design?

A: Although I’m still relatively new to the pattern design world, I try to vary the use of materials when bag making. I love trims, rick rack, vintage buttons, as well as using corduroy and denim. I’ve broadened my scope and look beyond what would be considered traditional. My collection of vintage fabrics and linens is growing steadily and I see future designs incorporating them.

Q: What type of patterns do you enjoy designing or do you have a specific design/style profile you enjoy most?

A: My pattern design life got started with bags but I was a quilt maker first. If I have to classify myself I’d say I love crafty, cute, contemporary. My taste is eclectic.

Q: What inspires you and your designs?

A: It could be a piece of fabric that gets the wheels turning or maybe it something I see in nature of an architectural feature like details on a decorative fence. Then I try to interpret it into my style. And nothing gets my juices flowing like vintage buttons!


Q: What developments or trends in quilting are you excited about?

A: I love the use of recycled materials in today’s quilting. Certainly nothing new as our ancestors did it long before out of necessity.

Q: Tell us about your workspace? What do you like about it and what do you wish you could change?

A: My sewing life began at the end of the dining room table with a cabinet in the hall for my fabric. I moved to a loft in my current home (that’s where Loft Creations began), then a small spare bedroom. Lucky for me my husband and son created my current sewing studio which is in our finished basement. It’s a walk-out so I have windows and even a bathroom. I selected the colors, flooring, layout, lighting and they did the work. I wouldn’t change a thing. I have a huge design wall right behind my sewing chair. Then I can sew, swivel, and pin. One of my favorite features is an eye/bolt and wire system strung along the length of the 27 foot back wall. I have clips to hang and display my quilts and rotate them when I want.



Alright, rapid fire time. What is your favorite…

Q: quilting technique to use?

A: I love the use of big stitching quilting in projects.

Q: quilting tool that you could not live without?

A: Left-handed Gingher scissors. Finding true left-handed scissors is not easy.

Q: style?

A: Crafty, cute, contemporary

Q: color?

A: Absolutely without a doubt Lime Green. And if there are polka dots involved it’s even better! I had a lime green bean bag chair in the early 1970s.

Q: quilt designer? (Other than yourself of course)

A: Actually, I don’t have a favorite designer as I’m inspired by so very many talented bloggers.

Q: organizational tip?

A: I pre-wash all fabric before stashing it so it’s ready when I am.

Q: Do you have a personal motto you try to live by?

A: Two actually: 1) I’d rather do one or two things well than lots of things mediocre. That applies to my everyday life. 2) When it comes to agonizing over perfection my rule of thumb is ?? I’ll un?sew and re?sew twice. After that it’s meant to be “imperfect.”

Q: Do you have any advice for new quilters?

A: There really are no rules when it comes to quilting. Do what you like, when you like, because you like. No one else’s opinion matters. Just love what you do. And remember “mistakes” can turn out to be very happy new designs.

Q: What would surprise us most about you?

A: Perhaps that I do not own every piece of polka dot fabric in existence!


11 responses to “Designer Interview: Stephanie from Loft Creations”

  1. Linda Says:
    03/22/2012 7:42 am

    Love Stephanie’s designs and she has a stellar blog. She’s a nice person too!

    Reply
  2. Mary on Lake Pulaski Says:
    03/22/2012 8:12 am

    Great interview! It’s fun to know Stephanie even better!

    Reply
  3. Simone Says:
    03/22/2012 11:00 am

    What a great interview! It is because of Stephanie’s bag designs, that I now love making bags.
    Stephanie is a wonderful and caring person!!

    Reply
  4. Carol Says:
    03/22/2012 12:27 pm

    Great interview. I’m lucky enough to be able to be a sewing tester for Stephanie. I’ve only done one test so far, looking forward to helping her again sometime. Stephanie is a very talented pattern designer and a good friend.

    Reply
  5. Jackie Says:
    03/22/2012 1:17 pm

    Fabulous interview!! And I learned a few new things about you, Stephanie. You know I am one of your BIGGEST Cheerleaders!!

    Reply
  6. Char Says:
    03/22/2012 2:09 pm

    Hi Stephanie, I really thought you did own every piece of polka dot fabric in the world and I’m trying very hard to follow in your footsteps!

    Reply
  7. Nan Losee Says:
    03/22/2012 3:09 pm

    Congratualtions, Stephanie! I’ve loved your progression of quilt growth over the many years and forecast great things in your future. I see your greatness and on the sidelines cheering you on.

    Reply
  8. Nedra/ Cactus Needle Says:
    03/22/2012 3:30 pm

    I’ve always been a big fan of Stephanie’s work, and it’s so fun to learn more about her! (although I think I already knew, or atleast could guess she had every polka dot fabric in existence)

    Reply
  9. Carrie Pippins Says:
    03/24/2012 3:33 pm

    I am a dedicated follower of Loft Creations. I didn’t know Stephanie was a lefty.
    I am one of her pattern testers and it is always fun to see her new creations.

    Reply
  10. MarciaW Says:
    03/24/2012 7:14 pm

    Thanks for the lovely interview. It’s funny – my sister selected a lime bean bag chair for her bedroom during the mid-1970s!

    Reply
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    07/29/2014 7:45 pm

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