We love fabric and people who love fabric, of course! To share the love, as part of our Fall Quilt Market, we held a contest for a blog shout out! What fun it was to interview the winners. Here is the first winner, Gina Gempesaw of Gem Hill Quilts!
Tell me a little about your business?
I have been a quilter for over 18 years. I used to do a lot of cross-stitch. But, as soon as I discovered quilting, everything clicked in place and I hardly ever do any cross-stitch anymore. I have been working at a local quilt shop for about 15 years now with the last 4 years at the The Round Bobbin Quilt Shop in Ambler, PA. My husband of over 20 years is quite supportive of my fabric habit and has, only very occasionally, asked for a gift of a quilt!
What is the focus of your business?
My company is all about my original quilt designs. They appear in various magazines and books. Some of them are free pattern downloads for fabric collections. I have other patterns that we run as Block of the Month programs or as classes at the local quilt shop. Lately, I have started to make projects and write tutorial blog posts for AccuQuilt.
What inspired you to start your business?
Early on, I realized that I prefer to create my own designs. When I did pick a pattern up, I would instantly start re-writing it in my head! Clearly, I needed to create and write my own patterns.
What color combinations do you find yourself using over & over & over?
I have quite the eclectic collection of quilts. I have designed projects using reproduction fabrics to very modern prints, from taupes to bright novelties, from 2-color quilts to scrap quilts. However, I will admit to being pretty partial to brights and fabrics with lots of color.
Favorite memory of working with fabric?
There are so many to choose from! One time, I was nervously working with a lot of curved piecing and bias edges, using the “Rob Peter to Pay Paul” block. Every completed block seemed wonky. I was so thrilled and delighted to find that all the blocks fit together and the quilt turned out beautifully!
Bubbles Quilt: “Robbing Peter to Pay Paul” block quilt. Photo courtesy of Annie’s Publications. Project available here!
Favorite part of your work?
I love designing and piecing quilts.
Sampler quilt designed for Local Shop Hop in Southeast, PA
What draws you to Ink & Arrow fabrics?
The vibrant colors, the crisp designs – it’s all just so much fun!
One of Gina’s latest projects: Bollenvelden It appears in Quilter’s World Magazine, Spring 2016 Click photo for more information!
Tell us a fun fact about yourself?
I love math and used to compete – and sometimes win – math tournaments in school. Very nerdy of me, I know!
I&A Comments: Math is a huge part of quilting – it must have helped you out a lot along the way! 🙂
Explain an example of a “happy accident” in your work?
When I was working on the Quilting Treasures’ Quilting Temptations collection, I so dearly wanted to used this circle motif with pieced sections. It looks a bit like a “Lifesavers” candy. However, it’s not the easiest block to make. In the meantime, I was also working on a totally different project where I had been cutting out blocks from other pieced blocks. That just opened my eyes! To simplify the circle motif, you just make a pinwheel block and cut the circle from that pinwheel! Easy-peasy! See example below!
Pinwheel block –> Trace Circle motif –> Easy-peasy Circle motif!
Quilting Temptations Quilt for QT. Click picture above for Pattern!
Here are a couple of great pictures from Gina of her work… Visit her at Gem Hill Quilts to see more!
Surfside Quilt: Appeared in the book “Trendy Triangles” using fabrics from QT “Lola Textures” Click Photo for more information.
Surf & Sand Block of the Month: Using Color Blends by QT. Click on picture above for the instructions!
We are so excited to have Gina as a winner of the blog shout out! We look forward to seeing what Gina comes up with using our Ink & Arrow fabrics!!! Thanks Gina!