Designer Tidbits: Caroline Simas

The Fat Quarter Shop is excited to welcome Caroline Simas to the Jolly Jabber. Caroline’s latest fabric collection is Finally Free from Robert Kaufman Fabrics.

Q: What was the first seed that grew into the Finally Free collection?
A: The best way for folks to understand the inspiration behind this collection is to read my blog post HERE about why the collection is called Finally Free. I am constantly inspired by our four children and everything in nature. Our own backyards are sanctuaries with endless dreaming possibilities. I am passionate about incorporating my faith into my art and although fabric is not covered in scripture, this collection is very much faith-based.

Q: If your collection had a soundtrack what would be on the list?
A: Finally Free by Nichole Nordeman...yep, the name came to me for the collection before the song came to mind but I did listen to this in the studio much of the time I painted the art for the Finally Free collection.

Q: What single print/SKU in the collection is your favorite?
A:  Difficult to choose but I'd have to say the earthtone colorway Birds, Butterflies, Flowers on Ecru. So many sewing and crafting possibilities for this!!!

Q: What is your favorite project you have made using this collection?
A: I hate to admit it, but I don't sew...Mom said when I was young, I wouldn't put down the paintbrushes and crayons long enough to learn. However, I do make some projects with my fabrics like this mini mason jar pincushion sewing kit. (We're going to give away THREE of these!)

I also have a few mixed media pieces incorporating some of my fabrics which are in progress. I am fortunate that my mom has gotten her sewing machine back out in the last few months and is sewing up a storm..she's promised a few skirts for my twin girls and some pillow projects soon!

I am also blessed to have a dear friend, Lillian who helped me sew and prepare a few fun things for Surtex, the art licensing tradeshow where I exhibit each May. Lillian made these darling Finally Free fabric birds and this precious apron with the giant flower on the shoulder...Looooove!

Q: What is your favorite part of working in the fabric industry?
A: I have really enjoyed meeting other talented fabric designers and working with the team at Robert Kaufman. They were so wonderful to walk me through the process of development since it was my first time designing fabric. They also released another collection I did called Save the World....colorful patterns peeking through peace and recycle symbols.

Q: Can you give us a sneak-peek of your next fabric collection?
A: I have so much many art collections available for licensing. I hope there will be more fabric collections soon, but I have been so busy with design deadlines for home decor and accessories which are launching soon.

Q: What is your absolute favorite thing in your house?
A: This January a large collection of inspirational home and gift products with many of the Finally Free patterns and designs will be launched by Demdaco in their showroom in January at AmericasMart. These products will be sold to retailers worldwide and should be in many Hallmark stores in early 2012. You can also find some of my Finally Free patterns on skins for technology devices for Skinit. You can purchase them online here. And some of these designs are also on my designs for Tiny Prints here.

Q: Which project stands out in your memory as your all-time favorite?
A: Yes, but they were not made by me. Somehow some sweet ladies in the Czech Republic got an early hold of some Finally Free fabrics and started sewing and selling their goods on Fler which is similar to Etsy. They were kind to contact me and let me know they have sold out of everything quickly and plan to order more....a good sign!

Q: Where do you do your best thinking? Can we see a photo of your studio?
A: Of course I think best in my studio when all is quiet and I can concentrate on design rather than dishes and laundry. My studio is always a work in progress ...I have a drafting table, a computer table and a table to create messy mixed media. It's usually a mess but that means things are being created so I love that! This is just one side of my will change again when we do the renovation.

Q: What is your favorite snack food? Can we see a photo of your fridge or pantry?
A: Homemade pizza...with garlic, spinach and artichokes.... Sorry, no photo, it's a small pantry and a mess...crammed with food for four kids, ages 13, 11, 7 and 7. We are in the process of finalizing plans for a big home renovation...exciting and scary!

Now, let's have a giveaway! I will giveaway 3 mini mason jar pincushion sewing kits!

#1 Leave a comment here letting us know what you'd like to create using any of the Finally Free fabrics.
#2 Leave a comment here letting me know you subscribed to my blog DESIGNING FOR THE SOUL
#3 Leave a comment here saying you liked Multiple Blessings by Caroline Simas on Facebook.

Contest closes one week from post date. Good Luck!!

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