Thursday, 26 February 2015

Meet Kelly Panacci and a GIVEAWAY!!!

Giveaway at the end=)  

Note from the Editor, The Canadian Quilter... Oops, in the Spring issue we mistakenly printed our feature designer's name incorrectly. Here is Kelly Panacci's article - name corrected - along with her social media. Check out her amazing fabric!

Kelly Panacci – Art Designed to Inspire®
I’d like to introduce Kelly Panacci, an extraordinary creative, who brings us bright and cheery designs in fabric. They are just what we need as we head into spring!  Kelly shares some of her secrets about how she became a fabric designer and shares some tips for those who would like to try it themselves!

How did you first become involved in designing?
I was one of those kids who doodled on everything including the covers of my books, my bell bottom pants and even my shoes. Luckily there are art classes and diploma programs for people like me. I eventually landed at George Brown College in Toronto studying Graphic Design. After graduation I worked for advertising agencies, book publishers and eventually as an illustrator for Sandylion® Sticker Designs. At the time, Sandylion® was the world’s largest novelty sticker manufacturer and I loved creating images and collections for them and the hobby market. With my husband as business partner in 2003, we struck out on our own under the Kelly Panacci Inc. brand name. Since then our licensing partners in the Craft and Hobby industry have produced hundreds of our co-branded products distributed in 30 plus countries for scrapbooking, stamping, stationery, quilting fabrics and most recently school and office supply.

Can you give a brief summary of what licensing is?
A license agreement is negotiated between two parties: the licensee (manufacturer) and the licensor (artist). In a nut shell, it is a set of art use rights allowing manufacturers to use an artist’s work on their products. Intellectual property rights (copyrights) are “loaned” for a specific period of time in designated territories (domestic or international) and limited to product types or categories either on an exclusive or non-exclusive basis. Terms vary, depending on use, market, brand recognition, product category and other factors. In return for art use the manufacturer or licensee pay royalties on sales of co-branded and shared products.

How does a designer become licensed?
The approach varies and many great books and online articles have been written on this topic, so I'll tell our story instead with the hope it will inspire others. In my case, I was sponsored by the owners of Sandylion® Sticker Designs who loved the art I created for them. We had a good working relationship and the products I developed for their company were top sellers in the scrapbooking market. I had a proven track record and a unique style that appealed to their buyers, so it was a win-win for both of us. This is really what it takes to be successful as a licensed artist in the craft and hobby industry. The art should be inspiring, fresh and new so retailers and customers buy and use it. That's why our company tag is Art Designed to Inspire™. In fact that's all we do. We know that if we design art that inspires then our partners will take care of the rest and crafters will have great quality products to create with. Sticking to one goal has really helped us focus and grow our business and brand. We also partner with the best and most trusted manufacturers in the industry knowing that the art is only as good as the quality and reputation of our licensing partners. This is why we are so thrilled to be exclusively licensing our fabric designs to Riley Blake Designs.  

How many hours a week or month do you spend in your studio?
As an entrepreneur and sole designer for our company, most days you will find me sitting at my computer working on future collections. When I’m on a roll I can design for 10 to 12 hours at a time. If I’m not illustrating then I am researching, responding to emails or keeping up with our social media accounts. I also enjoy teaching, which often falls on weekends at events, or during the evening hours. That's the time I get to chat with inspiring crafters, so it doesn't really feel like work. Like any owner of a small business, I wear many hats, but I’m lucky to share the business with my techy and marketing manager husband. He takes on the things that artists like me shouldn’t try: ie. accounting, contractual agreements, sales pitches and IT (technology) so we can both keep to a nine to five schedule.
Have you started making or designing quilts?
Years ago I tried my hand at traditional quilting and for a time I painted on silk and sold scarves and garments at Craft Fairs. I quilted a piece of that silk and made a wall hanging which my husband now cherishes (he's my biggest fan) as a cover for instruments in his music studio. I forgot about that quilting project until your question sparked the memory. Since then I haven’t quilted or even been sewing, but that changed just last month. One of the great things about licensing and partnering with manufacturers is that they send samples of your co-branded products. Samples from our first fabric collection with Riley Blake Designs "Happy Flappers" arrived at our door, and I was so excited that I dug out my old sewing machine immediately. The fact that I hadn’t sewn in a long time didn’t thwart my plan to try my own version of projects spied on Pinterest and DIY Blog sites. I created a baby bib, coffee cozy, stuffed owl toy and drawstring bag before posting the tutorials on my blog as part of the Riley Blake Post Quilt Market Blog Tour. As a beginner sewer, it was great fun to create the projects with our new fabrics and as a designer it was rewarding to see how the fabrics all worked so well togetherthe colours, imagery, scale and patterns all pieced in harmony.

What advice do you have for someone just starting out in design?
Tip 1 - Be true to yourself and find your own style. Experiment, try new things, make a mess and even make mistakes, but learn from them and start again. Be patient and persistent and practice, practice, practice. Draw for a few hours or a few days and you’ll have a body of work in progress. Take some time away from it and come back with fresh eyes. You’ll likely have some new ideas to make your designs even stronger.
Tip 2 - Research and gather your inspiration. We are inspired and influenced by everything in our surroundings, but try to harness some of the imagery by way of an inspiration board. Create a vignette from design elements like photographs, fashions, accessories, architecture, paintings and nature. Include a colour palette and even fonts that help convey the mood and theme you’re going for. Your finished collection will veer from the inspiration board as you introduce your own styling, but it’s great to have a good foundation and start point.
Tip 3 - Don’t hoard your work, get it out there! Submit your art to companies you’d love to work with. Blog about your art and projects, send out press releases to magazines and use social media as much as possible to promote any new work. If followers are engaged by your work, there is a good chance manufacturers will love it too!
Follow Kelly:
Facebook go here to enter her giveaway and like her page while you are there!

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Youth Challenge - Last Week

There is less than one week until the deadline for entering this year’s Youth Challenge.

Feb. 28th is the last day for entry...

If you need to know more about this, visit our website  - on the right side - Cantik Batiks Youth Challenge 2015 - My Favourite Animal and click on the link or click here. There are two links: one for all of the details about the challenge and the second takes you to the online form when you are ready to submit the quilt into the challenge

Every entry must have a CQA.ACC member to sponsor them.
So grandmothers, mothers, aunts, cousins and just about everyone get those kids' entries in this week.

There are fantastic prizes as well.

But most of all we'd love to see what your kids can do!

Friday, 20 February 2015

Quilt Tour Hits BC!

It’s Time For Colour! Travelling the BC Interior in March

“It’s Time For Colour!” is a cross country travelling exhibit of 36 awardwinning Canadian quilt artists. Sponsored by the Canadian Quilters Association, funds raised from the sale of these fabulous postersize artworks and their colourful cards will support the Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada. In March 2015, 18 beautiful pieces will be shown in the BC Interior. These amazing quilts need to be seen to be appreciated at any of the following locations. Ask all your friends to join you and come out to see this fabulous show!


March 5
St John's Lutheran Church
5151 Alain Road
March 7‐8
Home and Reno Show
273 Power Street
10‐5 Sat, 10‐4 Sun
March 9‐10
Beyond Bliss
6250 Main Street
11‐5 Mon, 9‐5 Tues
March 11‐16
Rossland Art Gallery
2004 Columbia Ave
11‐5 Wed thru Mon
March 17‐18
Chamber of Commerce
121 Northwest Blvd
2–8:30 Tues, 9‐5 Wed
March 20‐24
Cottage Quilting
2000 Spall Road
regular business hours
March 25‐29
Salmon Arm
Thread N Paper
650 Trans Canada Hwy NE
regular business hours
March 30‐31
Katja's Quilt Shoppe
1967 Trans Canada Hwy E
regular business hours

For further information contact Catherine Henderson at

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Canadian Quilt Talk Podcast on Quilt Canada 2015

I often listen to podcasts, and one of the shows I listen to is Canadian Quilt Talk, hosted by Brandy Lynn Maslowski. To give you a bit of an idea of what she talks about, I'll use her own words. This quote is from her website: "Canadian Quilt Talk is a weekly online podcast that aims to inspire quilters and fibre artists alike with tips, tricks and the latest products. We aim to highlight the stellar Canadian teachers, quilt shops, and products and keep you buying local first before turning to online buying or over the border adventures. We’ll dig into the history of Canadian quilting and explore how far we've come with the gold mine of Canadian talent."
Since I am a few episodes behind, I was not aware until another member of the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) mentioned to me that Quilt Canada 2015 was featured on Canadian Quilt Talk this past week! As soon as I had a chance, I gave it a listen. It is chock full of information about the conference, from the different instructors and where you can find accommodation in Lethbridge, to details on the different quilt shows that Quilt Canada is hosting.
Here is the link to the latest episode and all the other previous episodes on the Canadian Quilt Talk site. Just click on 'Play Now’ under each listing and you'll be taken to the page where the episode will play automatically.
Then simply sit back, enjoy your cup of coffee, and learn all about Quilt Canada 2015!
Shena Boes 

Sunday, 15 February 2015

Lollygagging to Lethbridge - 4

It’s time for the next report on our trip to Quilt Canada in Lethbridge, AB for June 4-6, 2015. We left Brandon, Manitoba in the “coldest” of cold winters and headed into Saskatchewan and right to Regina where there are several shops and a couple of guilds to visit as we lollygag on our way.

Cindy-rella’s Sewing and Craft Place was our first stop in Regina. They offer a wide variety of sewing machines for purchase, furniture and of course, classes galore - quilting and knitting/crocheting for everyone from beginner to advanced. We would have loved to stay longer here as the “It’s Time for Colour” travelling quilt show was going to be on display from Feb. 14-23rd. We’ve had such rave reviews from our Regional Reps who have travelled with the show. One rep has even named the suitcase that carries the quilts “Herbie” (we’ll have to wait for another blog to find out more about this name).

We stopped by Stitchn Be Artisan Boutique  (of course to check out their fabrics and make a purchase or two) before we headed to the Prairie Piecemakers Quilt Guild  for their monthly meeting held on the 1st Tuesday of the month at 7pm. The Prairie Piecemakers have been a great contributor to collecting our inches as well - boy are they an active group - Mystery Quilt and lots of quilting and Show and Tell. They just announced a visit by Ricky Tims to their area!

Thought we might take a detour to Moose Jaw (of course, weather permitting) to visit The Quilt Place quilt shop and the Moose Jaw Prairie Quilters.
sample of tablet bags that have been made

Then on again heading for the Alberta border where we’ll stop at Medicine Hat, AB. Haven’t found a quilt shop or guild here yet. But no matter, maybe we can catch a break in the weather and also catch up on our sewing. We were hoping to make a “tablet bag” for Quilt Canada 2015 - maybe this stopover is a good time to get that done and sent on the committee for the final banquet.

Stay tuned for our next leg of the trip - hoping to get to Penticton and back to Lethbridge in time for the conference. Don’t forget to keep those inches coming in to the Director at Large ( Of course, we might have to wait for some of our “snowbirds” to help us get those extra Show & Share/Tell inches.

Saturday, 14 February 2015

February 15th, 2015 Giveaway

Be sure to check our facebook page on February 15th for this terrific giveaway for large and small Clever Clips. 

Durable spring loaded clips hold fabrics securely, quickly and easily.
The wide opening of these clips makes them a perfect alternative to pins when working with thick quilts, heavier weighted fabrics, vinyl or piled fabrics.
Every quilter, crafter and knitter should have this tool for holding sewing projects with layers; e.g. quilts, handles, piping, bias strips etc. Clever Clips are quick and easy to remove when sewing or serging. The semi-transparent color makes it easy to see through to the fabric.

Be sure to head to our facebook page on February 15th!

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Meet Our Treasurer - Lynn Mills

You know the saying, behind every good man is a woman? Well let me tell you how that relates to our organization. Behind every good organization is an amazing Treasurer!

And we know that CQA/ACC is an incredible national quilt organization in Canada, which leads us to the fact that we have an amazing Treasurer in Canada keeping us in line. Lynn Mills is back on the board for a second time as treasurer. Her work is flawless, detailed and she always has an answer for us at a moment’s notice.
Lynn with 'Mrs. Cardinal' a quilt she has started in one of David Taylor's classes.

She is just that good. In her other life she is CPA CMA, which I am pretty sure stands for CQA/ACC’s Perfect Accountant/Counting Money Always. Apparently she tells me it really means Chartered Professional Accountant, Certified Management Accountant. I still like my definition better.

from a photo in Coreen Zerr's class

When she is not volunteering countless hours balancing the Trend-Tex Challenge, accepting payment for NJS entries or tallying totals for Quilt Canada 2015, she actually works full time and raises five kids with a fabulous husband.   I say fabulous on the husband part because this man actually takes her around to quilt shops on the weekend! For real! Try telling that to your husband and see what happens.
What happens when you sit down and sew, cut, sew, repeat.

Lynn mentions that she hasn’t had a lot of time to quilt in the past two years, but every time we mention a quilt teacher at our board meetings, she has taken a class with them! This girl loves taking workshops.  The latest workshops she has done are with David Taylor. Lynn is really enjoying the technique he has taught about taking photos and turning them into art quilts.

What to do with a jelly roll you are never going to use? Sit down and sew and call it a modern quilt!

She loves trying any type of quilting and judging from the workshops she has taken, she has tried them all. When she wants to relax and take a break, she will still turn to traditional and pull out her machine and just sit and piece blocks.
 Stargazey pattern

When asked what her favourite food was she said ‘see food’! For clarification, she does love a good seafood and is looking for an excuse to head to the east coast to enjoy their selection.

With her infectious laugh and amazing financial talent, it is a true pleasure and thrill to have such a dedicated Treasurer looking after the finances of our organization.

Friday, 6 February 2015

Top Ten Reasons to Attend Quilt Canada 2015 in Lethbridge

Windswept Snow - Tracey Lawko
NJS 2014

1.   An all-star line-up of teachers and their workshops are filling up fast.

2.    Great chance to meet up with “old” quilting friends and to also make some new ones.

Pillars of Strength - Veronica Puskas
NJS 2014

 3.    See the latest gadgets and fabrics in our wonderful Merchant Mall.

 4.    See the “cream of the crop” quilts in the National Juried Show.

Earthscapes - Janet Rhind
NJS 2014


5.    Enjoy a phenomenal speaker/lecturer Weeks Ringle (Transforming Traditions: Modernism and Quilts)

Alaska Nasturtium - Catherine Sloan
NJS 2014


 6.    Get inspired by all the wondrous works and you might be invigorated to start a new project or finish a UFO.


 7.    The opportunity to learn some interesting machine quilting skills.

 8.    Stay in an up-to-date residence with microwaves, fridges and TVs.


9.    Visit another distinct part of Canada that you may not visit on your own.

10.    Attend the closing banquet of the conference with a celebration of quilting, friends, a delicious meal, gifts and entertainment.

Delft - Jim Wilford
NJS 2014