One of the things we love about our “Designer Spotlight” feature here on the Country Quilt Shop blog is learning about designers from overseas. This edition shines a light on the fabulous work being done by designer Mandy Shaw. She’s one of Britain's most accomplished fabric artists and quilt designers, specializing in redwork. “I am a passionate textile lover and have been designing Redwork, quilt kits and patterns for over 15 years and was frustrated that I could not get exactly the fabric I needed in the perfect red. My lovely friend Vicki showed me how I could turn my sketches into fabric prints and we have been working together ever since,” Shaw told us.
Shaw started her own business in 2004, called “Dandelion Designs” and since then has also become an accomplished author, publishing 12 best-selling books, and selling more than 150,000 copies worldwide. With that highly regarded reputation, she connected with Henry Glass Studios to collaborate on several different lines. “I work on my own when designing prints, something will inspire me and I go hell for leather with ideas and sketching then I get Vicki to help with the technical stuff. Once Henry Glass okay’s the designs, it can be from 6 months to a year before it appears on the shelves,” Shaw said.
As for her inspiration, Shaw says staying true to herself has been one of the keys to her success so far, saying “It’s so important to be original and I am inspired by my home, family, love of gardening and antique quilts and old publications. I do not make anything I wouldn’t use in my home or workspace.”
Shaw says her desire is for everything she designs to tell a store and to stand the test of time. And her redwork certainly does have a classic, timeless feel. You can see an example in our shop by clicking on the “Say it with a Stitch” panel.
As for Shaw’s advice for aspiring designers? “Never doubt yourself, always say yes to everything, delegate if there are things you struggle with, love what you make.” Words to live by in any endeavor.
Many thanks to Mandy Shaw for taking the time to answer our questions. And as always, Happy Quilting!