Aurifil 2018 November Designer of the Month Sue O’very

I’m Designer, Author, Talk Show host Pat Sloan.

In 2010 I created the first original Block of the month for Aurifil and it was so much fun we’ve done it ever year since! 2018 is the start of my 8th year running this super fun program.  Learn more about how it works at our intro of the 2018 team

This year we challenged each designer to create a block inspired by ‘The Places We Go’ and I asked them to use  black & white fabrics  + a color of their choice.

Sue O’Very is our November designer. Sue is not only an incredible embroidery designer, but she knows all the tips and trick for making your machine work their magic. She does super fun videos and wonderful quilt designs! If you want to machine embroider with you Aurifil thread, Sue is your go to person!

Listen to our chat HERE on my Podcast.

visit her at Sue O’Very Designs

Missed a month? CLICK FOR PRIOR DESIGNER interviews

Remember we have a Challenge portion of our Designer of the Month interview.

Each month we select one random winner to receive a 12 LARGE spool BOX of Aurifil thread for just making the challenge block and sharing it! Details at the end plus last month’s winner!

Let’s get to know Sue!


Where do you live and what is your favorite spot there?

Tampa, Florida. We love the water! We spend a lot of time at the beach or in a pool. The area we live in has a nice selection of parks and I take my daughter there at least 1-2 times a week. We also love the ice skating rink in the Countryside mall. I love telling my northern friends we are ice skating in July. Always makes them laugh.

Babys First Christmas

When was your FIRST quilt sighting? Did it inspire you to start quilting?

In 2001 I worked as a sewing machine shop manager. I was hired to work on the sewing machine side of the business and teach classes for machine embroidery. Even though I hadn’t made a quilt I understood how they were constructed and enjoyed helping select fabric for folks. I found that choosing for other people made me more confident with my own selection.

I made my first quilt shortly after starting. It was from a giant animal print panel. I had no plan other than making it large enough to fit on my King size bed. My friends at the quilt shop helped me figure out yardage, block ideas and ultimately how to quilt it. . It was my bed spread for about 15 years, in fact the only picture I could find of it was when my daughter was about 2 months old and family was visiting.

Have you had a ‘light bulb’ moment in making

In the nearly 20 years of working in the home sewing industry I’ve had several aha moments. In fact, I think as Makers we get those moments more often then we allow ourselves to recognize. My most fun aha moment was about 2 years ago I came up with the idea of doing sewing notion reviews with a sense of humor. My weekly notion reviews are appropriately titled, “Does this Notion REALLY work?” – The video series turned into a regular column in Designs in Machine Embroidery magazine. The reviews are on all sorts of crafting notions, for quilting, machine embroidery and regular sewing as well. You can find my videos on

What does your studio look like, and what would you change in it?

It is no secret that my daughter and I live in a beautiful townhouse on a lovely lake. We’ve been there for about 5 years. My computer and business takes up the dining room and the sewing takes up my bedroom. I like to say I sleep in my sewing studio because quiet honestly my sewing studio just happens to have a bed for when I sleep.

What I like about it is that everything is neatly consolidated and there is no room for waste. Living in smaller quarters has forced me to only buy what I need when I need it and ultimately forcing me to be more selective when choosing fabric, furniture and even machines. What’s fun is I also have two sections in my sewing studio where I film my YouTube videos. Whenever I do have company they always want to see my sewing studio/bedroom and they are always fascinated on how I am so productive in such a small space. What I don’t like about it…the obvious. I wish I had more space. I remind myself that someday, my life will change and I will have a big beautiful and bright sewing studio.


Anything else you’d like to share?

Designs in Machine Embroidery runs a regular column on my notion reviews and you can find it in the current issue. I’ve also got two new machine embroidery projects in Creative Machine Embroidery magazine. It is always flattering when the editors send me an email asking if I can come up with a few ideas for new magazine articles. The one thing I miss about working on a team, vs working for myself is the brainstorming aspect. So when the magazine editors ask for ideas it usually turns into a really nice brainstorming session and together we always come up with the perfect project for the readers.

Fall 2018 I am launching a new sewing notion. It is produced by Famore Cutlery and they are creating a masterpiece. The notion is a fantastic re-invention of a tool from the 70’s no longer in production. With partnering with Famore we have taken an idea and brought it to the 21st century. The notion is called the EZ Point and Turner. It is a beautiful curvy tool which makes turning small areas right side out a breeze. It’s finished with a smooth turquoise finish with soft black handles, making great for gals and guys. I’ve also created a Foundation Paper Piece sewing project that is a carrying case for the notion called, EZ Point and Turner Pouch and there is also a machine embroidery version of the pattern for those who enjoy making project In the Hoop.

I’m most known for In the Hoop projects. The most popular pattern for 2018 has been this adorable little zipper bag created entirely In the Hoop of the embroidery machine. That’s right, includes a zipper! It is called the Sassy Stripe. Also the Flamingo Pom Pom Cutie, The Color Wheel Clutch and the Coloring Book Zipper bags with the Sewing machine on it. Again, all these projects are made using the embroidery machine and work terrific with the Aurifil 50 wt cotton thread. Fall 2017 I worked with Aurifil and created a box of 50 weight cotton thread for my collection, The Sewing Gnome. The projects are featuring the 50 wt cotton thread, which is unusual for machine embroidery. Typically embroidery designs use a polyester or rayon thread. The reason I enjoy using the 50 wt. Aurifil cotton thread is because the project has a softer look. The three projects in The Sewing Gnome are all free on my website and include printable and video versions. These projects are still the number one items downloaded on my website. Feel free to swing by and stitch one up.

About your block – What location inspired your block?

The Fort block was inspired by the oldest mason fort in the continental United States, Castillo de San Marcos in St. Augustine Florida. Even though I have traveled all over the world, from China to Paris, to Istanbul to Greece and to 29 states in America, there is just something about St. Augustine. To the heart of St. Augustine from Tampa is about a 3-1/2 hour scenic drive through central Florida. When you first arrive to St. Augustine you are guided along big to small to tiny roads. Most are one way and many are walking only. We try to go at least once a year to breathe fresh air, walk down some of the oldest roads in America and inhale the history. The Fort is on the western shore of Matanzas Bay designed by the Spanish engineer Ignacio Daza. Construction lasted 23 years and was completed in 1695.

I knew I wanted to create a block using St. Augustine as inspiration. Honestly, it was hard to choose what spot to take the final block inspiration from. From Spanish tiles to colonial construction and all the way back to the days of Indians living here the ideas were overwhelming. It wasn’t until I saw a post card of an arial view of the Fort when inspiration hit. As soon as I saw the photo I knew I needed to make a block from the top view of the fort. I’ve recently found my love of Foundation Paper Piecing and knew this would be the perfect Paper Pieced block. I plotted out the basic lines and then finished designing in my graphic software. I took my daughter Heidi, 9, back to St. Augustine to photograph my finished block. I had visions of perfect weather and the smell of sea air inspiring a magnificent photoshoot. What we got was the tail winds of Hurricane Michael and the highest tides, called King tides, and fastest winds in over two years. We made the most of our time there and did our best to stay dry. We still managed to get two days of sight seeing in and our brief and windy photoshoot.

St. Augustine is one of those places you go and while on vacation start to think in your head, how can I live here. The atmosphere is contagious. Live music on the streets, bed and breakfast, families walking and laughing and then couples drinking sangria. Each time we go we try a new restaurant, go on a new tour and are always sad to leave. If you are ever in North East Florida and want to take a day trip, head to St. Augustine. You will not be disappointed.


DOWNLOAD Sue’s November block


What is your Favorite quote?

My favorite quote is, “If it was easy, everyone would do it”. I’ve been an entrepreneur and single mom a long time and some how every month I’m able to push through and create new projects for my fans. I try to focus on the future and encourage my daughter to be a hard worker and be kind to others, and when we have a more challenging day I reminder her of my favorite quote.

Visit Sue at:

We are getting close to the end of the year! If you missed the 2019 team announcement, CLICK HERE

I will have a setting for this quilt in January!

CLICK TO MY Website to see all my blocks together!

Pat sloan thread kitEnter your block BELOW by Dec 15, 2018 to be in the running to win a BOX of Aurifil

This is SUPER EASY to enter all you have to do is make ONE BLOCK.

last month’s winner is below

And  JOIN my fantastic online quilt group with the most incredible  quilt show each day… I’d love to meet you!

1 Watermak-Needle-Black

******* JOIN our Aurifil Family  *******

EACH MONTH we will pick one random winner that has made a block.. that person will receive a special Aurifil thread prize! Winners are all contacted email

Our RANDOM picker selects the winner, selected  #2-Sue!  This awesome quilter has been emailed and WON a BOX of Aurifil thread!  .. see all the great versions HERE


  1. This was one of my favorite blocks this year! I think the pattern needs one little tweak: I had to cut my two border strips at 1.25×11.5” instead of the 11” listed. Thanks for all your work to make this happen!

  2. Thank you so much!! I can’t wait to receive it😘
    I have really enjoyed this BOM. Very unique
    12” blocks. Learning about each designer is
    Very interesting.

Leave a Reply