Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Designer Tidbits: Emily Herrick

Are you inspired by color? Emily Herrick mixes bold, rich colors and geometric prints to bring you Technicolor, her latest collection for Michael Miller Fabrics. Keep reading for a little chat with Emily of Crazy Old Ladies, and be sure to add some punch to your next project with the vibrant fabrics in Technicolor!


Q: Where did you find your original inspiration for Technicolor?
A: I love geometric patterns. I often take pictures of architecture, ceilings, and tile patterns. Somehow they all evolve into a fabric pattern eventually.


Q: What was your “aha” moment in designing this collection?
A: My 'aha' moment came when I realized that these designs would all work well together as a collection. Originally each of them began as coordinates to other ideas in my head. But once I grouped them all together I realized they just worked.


Q: What TV show or movie does your collection fit best in?
A: That's a tough one. It doesn't really fit the time period but this collection was loosely based on my love of 'The Wizard of Oz' as a kid. I love when the movie changes from black and white to "Technicolor". My market booth was based on this theme.


Q: Tell me about your sewing machines. What kinds do you have and how many?
A: I have two sewing machines. They are both pretty basic Kenmore machines. The oldest is 13 1/2 years old and I use it mainly for machine quilting. It's a work horse and I love it. I worry every time I use it that it may be my last but she's still going strong. The newer machine is a few years old. "Kenny" replaced his twin brother that I blew up. (Oops!) He is also a basic mechanical machine with a few fancy stitches. He has a speed control which has been great for my 8 year old daughter to learn to sew on. I do all my sewing and quilt piecing on this machine.

Q: What is your favorite part of the fabric industry?
A: I love the feeling of family and friends. It's a cool thing to get together with people that share your same passions. I've met and made friends with people from all over the world. It's amazing!


Q: From what aspect of your life do you draw creativity?
A: Whenever I'm in the creative process I often think of my younger years, when I spent so much time drawing and doodling. While my kids were little I didn't do much for me. Now that they're getting a little older and I've embraced my love for craft and design, doing what I loved as a kid makes me feel younger now. That being said, it's a combination of drawing in my younger self and relying on my older self that makes it work today.

Q: What is your design process?
A: I still tend to doodle quite a bit, but most of the process is done on Adobe Illustrator. There's always multiple files open on the desktop and the kids know if they close one they'll meet the wrath of Mom. :)


Q: What is your favorite print in the collection?
A: I think my favorite print is the Navy Tile. I want to make a bag out of it but I'm scared. I can sew things flat, no problem. But a 3 dimensional object, YIKES!


Q: What is the most challenging part of the design process?
A: It depends. Sometimes everything just fits together unexpectedly, like with Technicolor. However, I'm working on a collection right now that's been in the works for a couple of years. I love the concept but getting it to translate on fabric in a way that will appeal to quilters isn't flowing as nicely as I would like. But that's just part of the process. I feel if I set it aside and step away for a few days things have a way of working out.


Q: What projects do you hope to see made using Technicolor?
A: I would love a cute dress for my daughter. She's 8 so she wants to be grown up but she's still little. The prints in this collection fit perfectly for apparel. As I mentioned before, I'd love a bag. One of my favorite projects at market was a pillow that I didn't even make. Heather Bostic from the book Pillow Pop made the pillow for me and I love it! I'd like to add splashes of color all throughout my house with Technicolor. Lastly, I'd love to see a Crazy Old Ladies pattern made with Technicolor in every quilter's home. :)