It’s been a while since Quilt Market and the official drop of the Outback Wife collection now. I’ve always felt that there is such a rush of social media posting around Quilt Market that it’s all too easy for beautiful makes and designs to go unseen amidst the roaring flood of announcements and new fabrics. So, I decided to hold off until the flood subsided to start sharing the stories behind some of the most beautiful items I had on my Quilt Market booth.
Today I’m sharing a quilt made by a lady who’s one of my creative role-models: Blair Stocker.
I’ve been following along with Blair for a number of years and I deeply admire the way she makes.
Blair is one of the most versatile and considered hand-crafters I’ve ever come across. When I say ‘versatile’ I mean versatile. One day she’s stitching a quilt with reclaimed textiles, the next painting designs on canvas and then another, she’s crocheting around stones. (Serious – she crocheted stones once.)
To me, Blair is the epitome of someone on a creative journey; allowing each item she makes to inspire what she does next and she travels creatively wherever her heart and instinct takes her.
I know the term ‘creative journey’ is a bit of a cliche but I feel it’s the most accurate description of how Blair makes. She learns, explores and evolves, one handmade item at a time by being thoughtful, experimenting with new techniques and fearlessly trying new ideas. These are all things I’ve aspired to learn from her. To follow my heart and walk my own creative path, as she walks hers.
Having learnt so much from this incredible lady, I knew when I started thinking about making for Houston that I really wanted to ask Blair if she’d have a play with my fabric and perhaps make something I could have with me on display.
So when that first sample yardage of Outback Wife rolled out of the mill, Ella Blue quickly packaged a bundle up and sent it across the seas to Blair in Seattle.
I didn’t actually get to see what Blair made until I arrived in Houston. Just remembering back, I can feel the excitement I felt when I opened that cardboard box labeled ‘Wise Craft Handmade’ and the not-so-little gasp I made when I unfurled it in all it’s quilted beauty and spotted the pom-poms.
They are so unexpected yet so ridiculously perfect to the quilt.
Blair has named this quilt design ‘Outback Values’ and has written a free pattern for it which you can find here.
To be able to hold a quilt made by the hands of a lady who has been such an important positive influence to me creatively. It’s special. REALLY special. So special that I went out the paddock and squashed a little patch of crop to photograph it 😀
I’m so looking forward to making something for Blair in thanks. I’ve been giving it a lot of thought and have a few ideas. I know part of what I do will definitely be a frock; a super special frock.
I’ve tried to include all the various links throughout this post so you can connect up and get some of Blair’s creativity flowing into your life too, I’m still new to this blog caper so please let me know if any don’t work.
Wishing you a beautiful day