Podcast Episode # 13 and Book Review: Mary Fons

When I was asked by F + W if I wanted to review Dear Quilty: 12 Easy Patchwork Quilts + Great Quilting Advice, by Mary Fons (Fons & Porter/F+W; $22.99), I jumped at the opportunity.  I knew the magazine was stopping publication and wondered if the book would be a good resource to replace the magazines. Quilty was one of the first magazines I bought when I started quilting and continue to reference for patterns and inspiration.

Dear Quilty

Each project has clear pictures along with diagrams, well written instructions and ideas for how to vary the pattern.  There are patterns from Mary Fons, Tula Pink, Erica Jackman, Anna Graham, Christa Watson and more.  Here is one of my favorites:

Dear Quilty - Modern Plaid beauty image

I think I would even make it in a similar cool colorway.  It’s just gorgeous.

Dear Quilty - Modern Pinwheels beauty image

Each of the patterns tells the story of the designer, the fabrics they used and why they were chosen for the book.  Beyond the patterns, there are tips about the perfect 1/4″ seam, making a design wall, flying geese and using a rotary cutter.  I love the sections on the history of quilting and the origins of many of the quilts we see today. This is a go-to book for those starting to quilt and for those of us who “forget” the quilting details.  There are even bonus small projects such as a Farmer’s Market Tote and Gift Card Pockets.

After reading the book, I knew I wanted to chat with Mary through a podcast.  She had resigned from Quilty and I wanted to know where she was headed next.  Luckily, she agreed!  We talk about the “soul” of quilts, “activism through consumerism”, why she left Quilty and what she is working on now.  I hope you enjoy the episode!

Mary Fons graphic

To listen to the podcast, you can use the player below or subscribe to the podcast from iTunes or Stitcher.

Download this episode (right click and save)

Show Notes:

Mary’s Blog

Quilty Episodes

Springs Creative

Make & Love Quilts: Scrap Quilts for the 21st Century

New York Times article about buying handmade

*While F+W provided me with the book, my opinions are my own.*

Comments 9

  1. I loved this interview. Thanks to you BOTH, Sandi and Mary, for being so eloquent and candid about all these topics! I love the idea that making a quilt is worth investing time and energy to make it special and give it more “soul”. I also think we (the societal “we”) need to have a real conversation about the so-called maker movement and the impact it has and doesn’t have on those around us. That was brilliant. Please, don’t shy away from those social/political topics!! Sure, they’re harder for some people to digest, but these are conversations that need to happen.
    I sent the link of this podcast to my mom, who is an expert quilter and has been at it for decades, and I am looking forward to discussing this with her after she has a listen!

    1. Post

      Susan, thank you for listening! I agree that social issues can be harder to digest, yet we need to continue to talk about them. I hope your mother listens and you let me know her thoughts too.

  2. We talked about it this morning. Didn’t have time to get into the social issues part of it, but my mom loved the interview! She and I agree that it’s often worth putting significant time and effort into a project to make it more special. She does a lot of hand appliqué (which I admit I don’t have patience for)!

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  5. Feeling a bit silly to have just discovered your podcasts (you are now playing full-time in my car, my sewing room, my laundry room – I need to catch up). So I just finished listening your chat with Mary Fons, and I love everything that has been said. I need to listen it again, take notes. I think Mary is spot on on the subjects of traditional/modern quilters, knowing where modern quilting come from, also what was said about the makers movement, buying from local crafters and not forgetting about supporting local communities… So once again, I LOVE it. Thank you for your podcast, your voice sounds super good (not too ‘cheerleader’ nor too ‘public-radio’). My only problem now is that each time I’m done with one of your episode, I spend so much time exploring the related links and blogs.

    1. Post

      Caroline, I love that you are “binge listening” to my podcast. I often have the same reaction. (I won’t tell you about the time I binge watched four seasons of Lost! :)) Thank you for listening! Mary is amazing and I feel lucky to get to tell her story!

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