Thursday, August 30, 2012

Meet Judy Hansen

 Judy Hansen has the right idea—not only does she design fabric for Fabri-Quilt, but she owns The Quilt Shop of Deland in Florida. Talk about having built-in focus groups as she dreams up a new fabric line!  I get a wealth of ideas listening to my customers," she says. ''They are my inspiration, and [seeing what they like] helps me know what it takes—usually just one focus fabric print, and then blenders—quilters love blenders."
And don't forget stripes. ''Stripes sell and sell. I always have them in my line."

Customers at the shop serve as Judy's inspiration for designing fabric.
To the quilt shop owner experience, Judy adds in twenty years as a school teacher and a degree in art—all three make a powerful combination. ''I have drawn, painted, and sewed my whole life,'' Judy says. However, ''I am left handed and right moused, so [making art] on the computer is difficult. I like pen and pencil, and paper and watercolors. I think the painterly look brings a freshness to my lines."

That painterly quality was particularly evident in her first collection, Bella Flora, which was inspired by Van Gogh paintings.
Judy's first collection, Bella Flora, in all its Van Gogh-inspired glory
In addition to Bella Flora, Judy's lines to date include: Christmas Memories, Radiance, Christmas Traditions (available now), Garden Whimsy (available now), and Cook's Helper (available in October).

''I still tingle thinking about the day Fabri-Quilt asked me to design fabric. I don't take it for granted. It was a great moment."

Next up: A look at Garden Whimsy.

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