Introducing our 2021 Aurifil Artisan Team

Today we are thrilled to welcome our 2021 Aurifil Artisan Team. We were incredibly humbled by the enormous response that we received to our call for applications. We had a very tough job in narrowing all of the applicants to a team of 40. We are so thrilled to share that team with you today and cannot wait to work with this amazing group of quilters, sewists, and makers!

We’ll be collaborating with these creative visionaries throughout the coming year to promote their work with Aurifil thread, engage them in creative challenges, and share their work far and wide.


Alison Carpenter-Hughes

I am an award-winning artist, writer and workshop facilitator, focusing on free motion embroidery, using my domestic sewing machine as a tool for ‘drawing’ or ‘painting.’ My practice is a process-driven exploration of material; considering moments of thought, place and time that reveal an intimacy and vulnerability. I exhibit and sell artwork internationally, work on private and public commissions and have taught art to people of all ages for over twenty years. Working mostly with sewn full size and partial figures, including installation and animation, I often leave loose hanging threads that make them seem as though they are drifting-off into a dreamlike state, highlighting the passing of time. The work exists in that hazy place between consciousness and sub-consciousness; dreams and reality. There is a certain ambiguity to my work as each piece reveals only a fragment of their subject; the loose strands adding to their sense of incompletion, imperfection and impermanence.


Alison Holt

Alison specialises in freemotion embroidery usinga basic sewing machine, her subject matter is the natural world. With a combination of silk painting and detailed textured stitching she creates colourful realistic pictures. She is an international tutor and author of 5 books on her work. A graduate of Goldsmiths College London where she studied Fine Art Textiles she has honed her skills and creativity over 35 years.


Allie McCathren

I’m a textile artist who loves to play with color and texture! I have a degree in marine biology, and my love for nature and the ocean finds its way into my work all the time. I love to teach others how to use the techniques I’ve developed to make my quilts, and I offer several online classes that teach different methods of quilting. I love to express myself using fabric and thread, and I’ve found that working with thread – sewing, quilting, embroidery – can be one of the most therapeutic things there is.


Ama F

Ama (she/her) is a Canadian crafter based in Quebec. She enjoys both fibre crafts and sewing, as well as playing with colours and the process of choosing a project itself. Ama finds inspiration in music and video games, where her love of bold colours and patterns meets vivdly experimental experiences, pushing her to solve pattern puzzles in creative ways. All her crafting journeys and endeavours can be found on her Blog and Instagram, thevibrantpixel.


Amanda Carye

A New Englander who now calls New York home, Amanda has been quilting since middle school and sewing since forever. A serial entrepreneur with her MBA, she spent most of her career in the arts world before starting her first company (which had absolutely nothing to do with quilts!). In 2017 she started her second company, Broadcloth Studio, a collection of bold and modern quilt patterns that are designed to be enjoyable to make. Amanda is also a founder and co-host of the Quilt Buzz Podcast. She loves talking about quilting, designing, hand stitching, business strategy, and spreadsheets (data analysis, anyone?!?). Beyond her sewing machine, Amanda is most likely to be found with her nose in a book, playing the viola, or out on the hiking trail. 


Amari Thomsen

I’m an adventurous beginner quilter based in San Francisco. I love finding sustainable and resourceful ways (like upcycled clothes and fabric scraps) to make beautiful quilts!


Amy Ball

Hi I’m Amy, a modern quilter, pattern designer and workshop creator based in North Yorkshire, England. I love to combine bold, modern fabrics with classic patchwork blocks to create traditional but contemporary quilts. In early 2021 I launched my first digital course ‘Seams Perfect’ for beginner patchworkers. I’m excited to be adding more to my course selection later this year and to help beginner patchwork quilters create projects with precision and confidence.


Audrey Esarey

Audrey is a modern graphic quilt artist, teacher, and pattern designer from Louisville, KY. Always a maker, she learned to sew at a young age and made her first quilt in 2005. In 2018, she started to design and create a series of original quilts. Since then, she has exhibited her work at QuiltCon, International Quilt Festival, and Quilt National. She shares her creative process online, and her patterns are available via http://www.cottonandbourbon.com.


Bhiravi Rathinasabapathi

Bhiravi is a quilt pattern designer and sewist. She began sewing in her childhood, and fell in love with quilting just a couple of years ago. She now runs a quilt pattern business, Strawberry Creek Quilts (@strawberrycreekquilts on Instagram). She loves sharing beautiful makes that inspire, and encouraging others to explore creatively through quilting. In her spare time, she enjoys sewing clothes, gardening, hand-building ceramics, reading, and hanging out with her boyfriend and cat in Berkeley, California.


Eliane Bergmann

Eliane is a quilt pattern designer and avid modern quilter. Her brand, Patchwork & Poodles, embodies the two things she loves the most. Her miniature poodle, Riley, plays a critical role in quality control and is a professional snoozler. When not quilting, Eliane is usually exploring her home state of Wisconsin with her husband Jason. Find her online via her blog, Instagram, Facebook, and shop!


Elise Baek

Author and designer focused on teaching English Paper Piecing and quilt pattern design using Adobe Illustrator.


Erin Kroeker

Erin Kroeker is a modern quilter, fibre artist and pattern designer. She spends her time creating from her home studio in Winnipeg, Canada where she resides with her husband, two children and golden retriever. With the help of her mom, Erin made her first quilt at the age of four! Since then, creating and working with her hands has always been an important part of her life. In 2017, Erin launched The Blanket Statement where you can find modern, geometric quilt patterns inspired by nature. Her patterns are most often beginner friendly and most certainly enjoyable to make! Find her at http://www.theblanketstatement.ca or on Instagram at @theblanketstatement.


Garrett

Hi! My name is Garrett and my pronouns are he/she/they. I first appeared on this planet in 1986. Distinctly original and frighteningly predictable, I can usually be found on the couch watching either true crime documentaries, old movie musicals or something from Miss Piggy’s oeuvre while cross stitching a variety of subjects from Halloween to my favorite subject, The Wizard of Oz. Recently, I began learning how to quilt and while I am nowhere near perfect, and I am most assuredly a beginner, I’m having a blast learning a new hobby! I have an immense love for color and unique combinations of patterns and designs. I also have an immense love for vintage and kitsch, so combining modern fabrics in old designs or using a reproduction fabric in a new way is right up my alley. When not crafting, campaigning for a posthumous Oscar for Carol Channing or conspiring with my husband and two dogs, I can be found as coffeestitcher on both YouTube and Instagram.


Heather Black

Heather’s passion for quilt design is founded in her past as a landscape oil painter and her desire to be creative. She first tried quilting in 1995 but didn’t catch the quilting bug until 2011 when she designed, pieced and hand quilted her first queen size quilt. Shortly after that she discovered modern quilting and from that point on Heather has been designing and making quilts whenever possible. Her quilts and patterns have been featured in various quilting publications and is an active member in local and national guilds. Heather has had quilts displayed at international, national and regional quilt shows. Her quilts have hung at International Quilt Festival, AQS QuiltWeek, QuiltCon, MQX, Road to California and many more.


Henrik Müller

Hi, my name is Henrik, and I am thrilled to return as an Artisan for Aurifil. I am a nurse working in harm reduction for drug users in Berlin, Germany. I am also a father of two, a husband of one, a flaming homosexual, a quilter and my preferred pronouns are he/she/they. I do not shy away from using my platform to support political issues. Topics I feel strongly about are human rights issues such as anti-racism, LGBTIQ rights, gender equality, disabled rights, animal rights and environmental issues. I feel it is my own and our responsibility as humans to create a world worth living for all of us. My sewing and quilting journey started with an image of a Super Mario pixel quilt I saw somewhere on the Internet. I had no idea what a quilt even was, but I knew I needed to have this work of art for myself. At that point, I decided to buy an old sewing machine, a bunch of fabric, and I just went for it. My first quilt turned out to be a beautiful dumpster fire of wonky seams, terrible fabric choices and disastrous quilting, but I still love it. From there on out, I could not stop making quilts. http://www.hr-mueller.de


Isabelle Selak

Isabelle Selak designs modern quilt patterns and executes other sewing adventures at South Bay Bella Studio in Morgan Hill, CA. She is a work at home mom with three energetic kids, her husband, Bill, and their labrador, Taylor. When she’s not quilting or designing, you can find her co-hosting the IGTV series, Scant Quarter Hour, a podcast-ish video series about quilts and the modern quilting community.


Jamie

Jamie (she/hers) is a scrappy quilt fan and doily collector with a fondness for the color brown. She spends the majority of her free time knitting or stitching while on the couch with her equally crafty partner and their three dogs.


Jen Belnap

I live outside of NYC with my husband and six kids. With a large family and a husband who works a lot of hours, I found quilting to be my creative outlet. Sewing is my sanity! There is something about the hum of my sewing machine that is so therapeutic. I love the design process and enjoy creating new patterns. I also love the amazing creative people I have met along this journey. When I’m not sewing, you will find me planning our next family trip or adventure. We take a quilt with us and take unique and fun quilt pics of the places we travel. Our family motto is “make beautiful memories.” And we try to do just that! You can follow my creative journey by stopping by my blog https://thesmittenchickenblog.wordpress.com and you can follow me on Instagram @thesmittenchicken.


Jennie Pickett

Jennie loves creating pretty, practical things with fabric. She started Clover & Violet in 2009 and has designed a variety of bag, accessory, quilt and organizer patterns. As a homeschooling, stay at home mom, designing patterns and making things is the perfect creative outlet to do something for herself while also connecting with other adults who share the same interest. And as an army wife, her family is constantly moving to new areas of the country, and sewing has also been an opportunity to make new friends by hosting sewing lessons for people in the community. Jennie’s style is bright and cheerful and mixes patchwork and quilting with smaller items that are quick to make but practical to use.


Karen Foster

Karen Foster lives in Capitola, California and is a founding member of the South Bay Area MQG, Santa Cruz chapter. She enjoys collaborative projects, swaps and challenges especially those prompted by her amazing #BeeSewcial mates. Karen considers her style eclectic and evolving. Improv is her current creative sweet spot as well as making original designs into reality and working in a series.


Kathy Ross

Textile artist specializing in free motion embroidery. fabric collage and fiber manipulation..


Kymona Tracey

Hello, I’m Kymona Tracey. Who am I, you ask? I am a woman who never slows down and loves it. Yes… I am the energizer bunny’s sister! I keep going and going. I am a single mother of two beautiful children who are seven years apart. My 23-year-old son is away at college learning how to be independent. He graduates in a couple of months. My 14-year-old daughter loves anime and crafting with me. Besides being a mom, I work full time as a hospital administrator, teach high school students on the weekends, and have an immense love of learning new things. I’ve taken classes in photography, web design, knitting, scrapbooking, card-making – you name it, I’ve tried it. I started sewing four years ago when my then ten-year-old daughter taught me that her sewing machine would not bite me. She taught me how to make my first tote bag. I was blown away by the bag I made; I could not believe I made that with my two hands. I immediately bought my sewing machine. Since then, my sewing experience has been a whirlwind of fun. Today I make bags, quilts, home decor and sew with paper.


Laurel Ryan

Laurel is the maker behind the PorcupineSews Threads brand. Laurel has a lifelong creative passion for quilting, designing and teaching. She lives in the PNW with her husband, son and a pile of animals.


Lisa Hofmann-Maurer

I got introduced to quilting 2015 in a sewing circle while living as an Expat in Kansas City Missouri. I fell in love with modern quilting immediately and havn’t stopped since. I love designing patterns, but my most favorite thing to do is teaching. I do also organize the Swiss Quilt Retreat and am super excited about all the international quilting knowledge and friendships that can be made at those Retreats.


Lucy Brennan

Lucy is a quilter and blogger at ‘Charm About You’, she is a pattern designer and regularly teaches quilting classes. Inspired by the history and varied techniques of patchwork and quilting, Lucy enjoys mixing modern and traditional to create her miscellaneous style. She actively encourages crafts on social media as one of the three global hosts of the #saturdaynightcraftalong on Instagram each week. Her passions are combining fabric, learning new skills and giving confidence to crafters and quilters.


Lucy Engels

Lucy Engels is a Quilter/ Visual Artist based in Edinburgh, Scotland. With a background in fine art she studied printmaking, traversing into quilt making in 2013 and hasn’t looked back! Her work is full of colour which uses fabric and thread as the medium instead of the printed ink layer. Combining bold graphic shapes and contrasting palettes, Lucy creates functional quilts, wall quilts and quilt patterns. Always pushing to try new techniques and processes. Whilst championing others to make their quilts their own and to not just follow the pattern. She also designs and screen prints limited edition fabric collections and works on paper.


Madeline Bonner

I am a textile design graduate with a passion for colour and pattern. I enjoy traditional and contemporary design and particularly like traditional techniques.


Martha Woollard

Based in Dorset, England, Martha has been sewing since she was a small child let loose with an abundance of felt and her mum’s Liberty offcuts. She enjoys creating quilts and smaller items, often using a quirky mix of fabrics. Whether sewing by machine or hand, vibrant colours are never far away. Martha is excited to be launching an independent pattern line based on her original designs.


Mary Davis

I have always been a crafty person. As a kid, my mom taught me how to crochet and basic sewing skills. I learned to sew clothes after taking Home Economics in junior high school. I was a garment sewer for many years. I discovered quilting after my mom picked up the hobby later in life. I was fascinated and wanted to learn more. I bought a book and taught myself to quilt by making a sampler wall hanging. Today, I enjoy all aspects of quilting. I love piecing new designs and working on my free motion quilting skills. I have started writing quilt patterns and, to date, have released two of my own designs. I do not see this journey ending anytime soon. I consider myself a traditional quilter with a modern twist. Some of my favorite blocks are the Ohio Star and Log Cabin. I prefer floral prints over solids and machine quilting over hand quilting.


Pam Holland

After a career as a photographer, and fashion designer Pam has been working in the quilting industry for over 30 years. She  travels 10 months of the year to far flung places teaching the art of quilting and Judging quilt shows. Her experiences in teaching and travel have been the inspiration for most of her quilts  and has given her the reputation of shaping something new from the already established. Drawing, writing and filming while she travels form the basic plans that she uses to create quilts when she’s home in the studio. Pam has been lucky enough to win numerous International awards including BOS in Houston and other major shows, has written books on the subject and currently has 3 new books in the process.    She has been supporting artist to Ricky Tims and Alex Anderson in the Ricky Tims super Quilting Seminars and featured artist at many events including exhibitions in Paducah, Houston and an 8 month exhibition of her Bayeux Quilt sample with the Magna Carta.       Pam lives in the Adelaide Hills  in South Australia and is married and Mother to 13 children and Grandmother to 28 who all live close by.


Paula Steel

Paula Steel is a modern quilter, pattern designer, author, teacher and Technical Editor from Lancashire in England. With a love of bold colours, geometric designs and a fondness for quilt maths, Paula took up quilting in 2015 and hasn’t been able to stop since. Paula loves to spread the joy of quilting and released her first beginner friendly book, ‘Modern Rainbow Patchwork Quilts’ in February 2020.


Porfiria Gomez

Bonjour! I am a sewing enthusiast, self-proclaimed designer and blogger. I’m a dreamer and lover of family life. I also have a passion to create beautiful things. These days you will find me on my sewing machine getting lost in old school romance while I create one of my many loves either a quilt, cooking or a beautiful piece of lingerie. My love of sewing began as a child. I am a native New Yorker with a heart that was born in the countryside of France. See what I mean Hopeless romantic.  Some of my earliest memories was trading my baby doll with my cousin for her toy sewing machine.Most of my childhood I would watch my mother create curtains and dresses on her Singer vintage sewing machine (which I own today) while she baked pies, peanut butter cookies and her North Carolina Peach Cobbler all this while managing us six kids. Through her caring actions, my mother was providing the stepping stones to what would become my vision of my future.


Racini Aranda

Racini is a self taught quilter since 2013. She holds a MFA in Studio Arts from Parsons where she focused on large scale oil paintings. After graduation, she transitioned into fiber arts and quilting which was more manageable and less toxic for her one bedroom apartment. She initially learned how to quilt so she could gift it to her family and friends. She never thought it would grow into what it is now. Being of Filipino heritage born in Hawaii, Racini enjoys brining forth and sharing her culture through quilting whenever she can. She loves working with Philippines and Hawaiian textiles whenever the project calls for it. She enjoys creating imagery through her quilts and wants to continue sharing different cultures through quilting.


Raven Maureen

I’m Raven, I’m a sewing, fashion and DIY lover based in Jackson, MS! I have lived in 5 states up and down the east coast from New York City and down to the Delta. In 2011, I graduated from Hampton University with a BA in Broadcast Journalism. My love for sewing started at a young age, but it wasn’t until I took a clothing design class in high school that I learned a lot of technical details of sewing and garment construction. Since I started my blog, I’ve been sewing more consistently than ever before and my closet is about 80% handmade!


Sarah Ruiz

Sarah Ruiz is a quilter and aerospace engineer from Houston, TX. Her creative and technical sides have always been intertwined, from drawing Disney characters and memorizing constellations as a kid to taking humans back to the moon and dreaming up new quilts today. Quilting perfectly combines her engineering and artistic mindsets, and she loves the puzzle-solving required to turn an idea into reality. Her quilts feature bright colors, bold lines, and graphic shapes that are easy to make but pack a visual punch.


Shannon Fraser

Shannon Fraser is a modern quilter and pattern designer based in Montreal, Canada. Known for her love of colour and bold graphic designs, her patterns have been featured in magazines including Curated Quilts, Love Patchwork and Quilting and the Quilter’s Planner. A self-taught quilter, Shannon loves sharing what she’s learned through her quilty trials and tribulations You can find free tutorials, inspirational projects and loads of resources to help you succeed in your quilting journey on her website (www.shannonfraserdesigns.com). For daily inspiration, you can find her on Instagram @shannonfraserdesigns


Sherry Shish

Sherry Shish has been a crafter her entire life. She started with hand sewing when she was younger, then expanding to crocheting, knitting, needle felting, paper crafts, and finally quilting. She fell in love with the variety of quilting! She is an engineer by schooling and day job, but quilting definitely energizes and motivates her the most. Hence, her blog: Powered by Quilting.


Stephanie Skardal

Steph Skardal is a quilt designer, educator, and maker who loves finding the balance between order and chaos in her quilts, mixing hard geometric lines and structure with an element of randomness in texture, color, or layout. With a background in software engineering, she is motivated to experiment with different techniques to create original quilt designs.


Susan de Vanny

Sue de Vanny Multi Media Artist Art in one form or another has always been a part of my life since I can remember. In the last 15 years I’ve has been delving into both ‘loves’ Painting & Textiles. A solo exhibition in 2011 saw the passion for Textiles grow with success in selling alongside my paintings. The Passion for Fabric has blossomed and made the transition fun to see how the art principles of painting and fabric can be combined. The completion of a City & Guilds Certificate 2 has given me the confidence to teach and love to share my artist flair with my students and friends. I create pieces that have perspective in a painterly fashion, with use of values and thread work giving extra texture & dimension, along with painting, stamping techniques, quilting and embellishments.


Wendy Chow

Wendy is an Aussie modern quilter and pattern designer based in New York City. The founder and designer of The Weekend Quilter, she aims to bring a timeless and fresh perspective to one of the oldest forms of needlework with her bold and distinct modern quilt designs. She is also the author of Urban Quilting and co-host of Quilt Buzz podcast.


We hope that you enjoy following along with us and would encourage you to check these makers out, click each Artisan’s name above to be taken to their website and to join them on their own creative journeys!

3 comments

  1. Amazing creatives!! All of you : this is so inspiring and I truly look forward to seeing more of your art work..Congratulations to all of you !

  2. Congratulations to all the artisans ! Many of them I recognise from last years artisans.

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