Once upon a time, there were two amazing women named Elisabeth and Nichole. They met one fated day, long ago, at the Los Angeles Modern Quilt Guild. They shared a love of fussy cutting and became fast friends. Years passed and the two creative makers began a wonderful collaboration, fussy cutting favorite prints and honing their mad quilting skills. One day, Elisabeth and Nichole hatched a brilliant idea and after much hard work and extensive expert-level fussy cutting, The Fussy Cut Sampler came to be. The quilting community rejoiced and celebrated by creating block after block featuring tiny images that come together to tell a series of magnificent stories.
Seriously though… we are in LOVE with this book and we’re not alone! The Fussy Cut Sampler by Elisabeth Woo Hardy and Nichole Ramirez has taken the quilty community by storm. The quilt along launched back in May and we’ve seen so many gorgeous blocks with some of the most amazing little fussy cut features. It has been an absolute delight to witness!
Today, we’re excited to share some beauty shots and talk a bit with the authors to hear more about their inspirations and how this lovely little book came to be.
What did you love most about the process of putting The Fussy Cut Sampler together?
We loved finding ways to explain techniques that we’ve had in our heads forever! Plus, adding in jokes that you’d actually have to read the text to find!
Do you have any favorite blocks to share?
Elisabeth: My favorite is block 48. I’ve loved creating words out of text fabric since I first started quilting, so it’s exciting to see the technique in a block!
Nichole: I can’t pick a single favorite, but the entire stripe chapter is near and dear. I love stripes, they’re one of my favorite kinds of fabrics. Elisabeth didn’t like them at all, but by the end of this process I’d won her over to the stripe side!
What is the most fun piece of fabric you’ve been able to fussy cut for inclusion in a quilt?
Nichole: I was finally able to use the thumbprint cats (designed by Samarra Khaja). I’ve had them in my stash forever but was never quite sure what to do with them! (see image below)
Elisabeth: This might seem silly, but I think the fabric that makes me the happiest to look at is the background from block 22 – it’s just a dash line stripe, but Nichole had given me her last tiny scrap. The fact that I was able to get exactly what I needed for the block before running out made it super special. (see images above)
You both created quilts to include in the book — how do your styles differ? Did you share progress with each other throughout, or did you wait to do a final reveal?
We shared our process with each other while we made the quilts, but we weren’t worried at all that they’d look similar, our quilt styles are night and day. While Nichole creates scrappy, eclectic quilts using all the colors, Elisabeth worked with a limited palette. We knew that if one of Nichole’s blocks was too blue/orange heavy, it would look too much like one of Elisabeth’s blocks. We found it was encouraging to see our progress shots, especially since we couldn’t share the book with anyone else yet!
What did you love most about working together to make this all happen?
We work together in our day-job lives too, so we see a lot of each other. I think the best moments of the book-writing process were when we set up camp in Nichole’s living room, test sewing blocks. Her dog, Bucky, kept us company. There were many lovely Saturday afternoons spent sewing away.
You’ve got quite a few people sewing along with you for the Fussy Cut Sampler Quilt Along — what is the absolute coolest fussy cut you’ve seen thus far?
I don’t know if we could narrow it down to a single fussy cut block, but our most favorite thing has been to watch people’s quilts grow and take on their own distinct personalities! We can usually tell just by looking at the block who the maker is. Each quilt is different, and reflects the personality of the maker – which was always our dream for the book.
For anyone who might be just learning about the Quilt Along, is there still time to dive in and get involved? Where should we direct them to get started?
There’s definitely still time! We’re in week 10 now, but you can join weeks 11 & 12, more information on our blog: www.thefussycutsampler.com/blog.
And of course… how did you first discover Aurifil thread and why is it the thread for you?
It feels like we’ve been sewing with Aurifil forever. We find that it flows effortlessly through our machines with minimal lint, and lasts for such a long time. Plus, the orange spool makes it easy to identify what weight of thread we’re using, and we love the huge color assortment.
Excited to dive into your own fussy cutting festivities? We’ve partnered with Elisabeth & Nichole to offer up a super snazzy Instagram giveaway to help get you started. Head here to learn more and enter-to-win one copy of The Fussy Cut Sampler + 4 LG spools of Aurifil 50wt thread in a Elisabeth & Nichole’s favorite colors: 2220, 1133, 1320, & 1231.
ABOUT ELISABETH & NICHOLE
Nichole Ramirez and Elisabeth Woo met at the Los Angeles Modern Quilt Guild and became fast friends because of their love for fussy cutting.
Elisabeth began fabric collecting years before she even started quilting. Since then, her quilts have hung in the Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show and at local county fairs. Follow her on Instagram.
Nichole began her quilting journey in 2003, when she taught herself how to make a baby quilt from tutorials online. She is a charter member of the LAMQG and her quilt designs have been published in Quilt Scene, Quilty and Modern Patchwork, Make It! Patchwork and Modern Patchwork Gifts. Follow her on Instagram.