April 29, 2015

Designing Fabric and Spring Market Preview by Franny

Hi, I'm Franny.
You might not know this, but I pretty much run everything that goes on around here. Lou and I just turned 4 this year and since I finally learned to type, I thought I'd take over Kate's blog to show you what really happens around here before Quilt Market. Lou and I have been training Roscoe to perform all of our responsibilities, so we'll have more time for napping. Pretty clever, huh?

So, before any fabric is even designed, I pick the color palette.
Lou usually supervises the whole drawing/designing process. Sometimes from above (seen here with Roscoe showing off the best vantage point):
And sometimes he needs a closer view to critique the details: 
Oh, it might look fun, but I assure you, Lou has quite a discerning eye and is pretty tough about which designs get his paw of approval. But if Kate works really hard, we let her take a break so she can give us treats. 
But not for long! Back to work...
Once the designs are completed and the strike offs come back to us, I select my favorite prints. Here are the ones I picked for Canyon..."Kate's" collection that will be showing in Minneapolis in May and will ship to stores in October.
These get sent back to Moda and then the long wait for printed yardage begins.
Lou and I told Roscoe he would have to stay on lookout 24/7 to make sure we didn't miss the UPS truck.
We didn't know how seriously he would take this part of his job! All throughout the winter, he kept watch. From the living room:
From the bedroom:
And even from the top of the staircase:
Then one day, the boxes finally arrive!
It's one of our favorite days, because we LOVE boxes! But that's a whole other story.
Whoops, got a little side-tracked there! Where was I...? Oh yes! The UPS delivery of fabric yardage finally arrives, then gets photographed. Here's Lou showing Roscoe how to work the ladder so they can stack all the fabric in a nice pile arranged by color.
Here's the photo I took of Canyon. Oh, I forgot to mention that I also take all the photos around here too.
Once the fabric arrives, it's time to sew quilts for Market! The studio is spotless when we start.
 And before anything gets underway, we inspect the equipment to make sure everything is in working order.
Ironing board, check.
Iron is plugged in, check.
Triangle papers, check.
Sewing machine is threaded properly, check.
And then the sewing begins! Flying geese are a my favorites. They're featured in one of the quilts Kate designed that goes with Canyon. She'll show that to you soon.
I love Lou's bird pattern. He's been studying them for some time and I think he helped Kate get it just right.
Kate helped with the pinning, because I kept getting my claws stuck.
And after a few hours of sewing, the studio looks like this:
And the floor looks like this:
But that's ok, because after empty boxes, our next favorite things are messes! Lou prefers scraps:
And I prefer piles:
It takes a while, but we eventually finish the quilt top/back and Lou gives them a complete overview and inspection. 
Then he figures out where we will need to ship the quilt.
We like to make sure the quilt is packed well. Here's Lou going over the finer points of bubble mailers with Roscoe.
And here's Lou teaching Roscoe about the various box sizes and shipping options available.
Finally our job is done! We're pretty tired from all that activity and need to rest up...
... because ... what's that??
The UPS guy is at the door with strike offs for our next collection!

Happy times to all of you heading to the Spring Market in Minneapolis! Wish we could be there, but please say hello to everyone at Moda and be sure to check out Canyon!

Be sure to visit these Moda designers today to see who has taken over their blogs!
Franny, Lou, Roscoe and Kate


  1. What fantastic helpers! Lou and Roscoe are very good at blogging. The sneak peeks are very good too, the fabrics look so yummy, can not wait to see the finished quilt.

  2. Great post, love the equipment inspection :).

  3. Hard to imagine you and Lou are already four! All those years of hard work have paid off, and with your able assistant, Roscoe, you've created a fab collection. Which of you chose that stunning violet color? Gorgeous!

  4. Oh your new line looks lovely! Cant' wait to see it in the stores.

  5. I wish I had some helpers as cute as yours.

  6. Hi Roscoe, we haven't met. I'm Boo Boo Kiity and I look like Franny and Lou but with long hair. My new house doesn't have stairs, but it has an ironing board and it's ok, I can look out ok. I think you Mom makes the best fabrics! And, since I live in the Grand Canyon state, my mom will have to make me and my sister a new quilt.

  7. You are so fortunate to have such good helpers! :)

  8. best post -- can't wait for the new line, it's already on my birthday list

  9. Great posting Kitty's. Your mom is a beautiful artists. I know she really appreciates all your help. Hugs to you and your mom and dad too.

  10. Great posting Kitty's. Your mom is a beautiful artists. I know she really appreciates all your help. Hugs to you and your mom and dad too.

  11. What a cute post - it really made me smile! It's wonderful to see how 'seriously' your kitties take their job helping you with the fabrics, from start to finish...especially checking out those boxes. I think the new fabric line is beautiful and I can't wait until it is available!!!

  12. How did I already know that one of the cats would be taking over!? Love it.

  13. Franny, I'm sure Kate loves that all you cats are helping her so much without you she'll be lost! And btw love all the (cat)pictures:-)

  14. You three kitties sure work hard. I'm sure your Mama appreciates your help in getting her ready for Market. Keep blogging, Franny; you are really good at it.

  15. OMG love the truth behind the scenes and the fabric!!! Great jobs kitties I was pretty sure you were the ones behind the magic all along! I will not be letting my four kitties see this as they already have way too much control of everything that happens at my house and do not need anymore ideas;-)

  16. How wonderful that you, Frannie, Roscoe and Lou are helping out. I know Kate really appreciates all the help. I would volunteer to help to if I lived closer. Take care and don't eat too many treats, you might not fit in those boxes .... Have fun can't wait for Canyon.... to arrive in my LQS...

  17. How wonderful that you, Frannie, Roscoe and Lou are helping out. I know Kate really appreciates all the help. I would volunteer to help to if I lived closer. Take care and don't eat too many treats, you might not fit in those boxes .... Have fun can't wait for Canyon.... to arrive in my LQS...

  18. Love your post Frannie! Glad to see you, Lou and Roscoe inspect things through the the process of designing. Perhaps there will be a show called Designing Cats on TV soon. You three would be naturals along with the other cats of Moda designers. Cheers.

  19. If only it was that easy and we could REALLY have the cats do our work! Great post!

  20. Love this post! Frannie, you did a fabulous job and I'm glad to hear you are keeping Kate in line! Love all the work you did on Canyon - I can't wait to get my paws on some!

  21. Thank you for all the cat pictures. I also like your canyon fabric colors.

  22. I absolutely love your Horizon and Paraiso collections. I bought as much as I could find. I think I love your Canyon collection even more. I'll start saving now to buy that collection in October. Just beautiful.

  23. The colors in the new line are beautiful and it's good to see you have 3 supervisors to keep you in line.

  24. Thanks for the morning giggle! Love those clever kitties!

  25. Such cute helpers! Amazing you get so much done with those distractions running around! Canyon looks gorgeous. Love the softer colors and can't wait to see more.

  26. I just adore this post! You are so lucky to have such talented (and cute) quilt helpers. Can't wait for your new line to hit the stores. It is going to be another must-have!

  27. Wow. You all sure have a lot more work to do than I ever imagined. I'm sure it just wears you out but I hope you get compensated well by Kate and Pete. You are a great writer Frannie and I hope to see more of your fabulous posts.

  28. Oh heavens!! I'm sooo excited for Canyon!! Lovely! (and can't wait to see the quilt top...Flying geese are on my to-do list and I'm looking for the perfect quilt pattern to do!)

  29. Love this! Kitties and fabrics both! I already know the quilt I want to make from Canyon--the Swallows of Capistrano pattern from Love of Quilting. I cannot wait!!! Beautiful collection as always!

  30. Seriously love your kitties. Can't wait to see your new quilts too!

  31. This was such a fun blog post to read. Canyon looks amazing!! October seems like SUCH a long time off...

  32. Fun read! Thanks for the scoop Miss Franny! ;) We are very excited to see more of Canyon!! It looks like our new favorite fabric, such nice soothing colors just like New Mexico land/sky scapes.