Have you met Claudia Porter? She is a self-taught quilter of 30 years, who turned her part-time hobby into a full-time business called Create with Claudia. Her blog and YouTube channel focus on quilting projects, patterns, fabric crafts and other tips. She sells a number of her designs in her Etsy shop. In October of 2020 she was named YouTube’s Creator of the Day and in March of 2022 she was named one of YouTube’s Women Creators on the Rise celebrating International Women’s Day. Today, you can find Claudia’s patterns in such quilting magazines as Make Modern and Quiltmaker.
We asked Claudia about her creative background. Let’s see what she said!
Island Batik: What sparked your interest in sewing and who was your first sewing teacher?
I taught myself after buying the fabrics with my mom and a book. I did not have a sewing machine, so the first few years I made everything by hand. I started sewing because my mother had a stroke and while I was helping my father care for her, I needed something to do to take my mind off of things. She needed to get out of the house, so I took her to a fabric store with me, sat her down, and she helped me pick out fabric. Neither one of us had any idea what we were doing.
What inspires your design process?
Mostly colors and nature and I keep a little notebook with me so when I have an idea I sketch it out.
What was the incentive to start blogging or posting on social media?
I wrote articles for a website under a pen name for about 6 years and started earning money from it. I then realized that I could combine an online with my quilting and make it a full-time job. That is how Create with Claudia was started. Having my own blog was my incentive to start posting more and more on social media.
Is there block or pattern you could you make over and over again?
Do you have a favorite quilt?
I made a quilt out of my father’s handkerchiefs. Until he passed away, he always had a cotton handkerchief with him. They were all different colors and were patterned with stripes and checks. It was a family joke that if you ever needed to wipe something off, dad had just the solution. So when he died I took all of them, cut them up and made myself, my mother and my brother a wall hanging from them.
What are your most and least favorite parts of quilting?
My favorite part of quilting is designing. I just love the endless shape and color possibilities and it’s fund and relaxing for me. My least favorite thing is basting.
Is there a technique that you were hesitant about trying, only to discover that you ended up absolutely loving it?
Paper piecing…amazing points!
What do you do that you hope the “quilt police” never find out about?
I don’t always measure precisely.
Do you enjoy watching TV, listening to music or audiobooks, or sewing in silence while you work on your projects?
I watch cheesy movies (especially British horror films) and television series from the 70s and 80s. No one else in my family watches them with me so it’s the perfect time. Also, they are not very engaging, so I don’t have to concentrate on them.
Do you have a sewing peeve?
Basting, basting, basting!
What do you typically turn to for stress relief when a project isn’t going as planned or when you need a break?
I decompress with jigsaw puzzles, the harder the better!
What are your other crafty (and non-crafty) hobbies?
My husband and I like to hike and we live in a woodsy area so there are plenty of trails to choose from.
If you could choose an all-expenses paid trip to anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
Machu Picchu in Peru – I love visiting places in countries that have a spiritual/mystical side to them. They offer such an interesting insight to other cultures. I have been very fortunate to have visited Delphi, Greece and Chichen Itza in Mexico and they were fascinating to me.
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Is there anything else you want to ask Claudia? Leave us a comment below!