Give a warm welcome to Pamela Boatright at PamelaQuilts! As a self-taught quilter, she takes great pleasure in motivating fellow quilting enthusiasts on their creative journeys, generously imparting practical advice along the way. Right from the beginning, Pamela has relished the art of quilt design, finding immense satisfaction and excitement in the fusion of traditional blocks and techniques to craft fresh and captivating designs. Beyond her larger projects, Pamela also finds joy in the intricacies of miniature quilting, embracing quick and efficient methods like strip piecing, all while expanding her repertoire of tools to enhance her precision and speed.
Pamela told us a little about her creative background. Let’s see what she said!
Island Batik: What initially sparked your interest in sewing?
Pamela: I grew up watching my Mom sew, and just naturally wanted to follow along with her – she made all of our clothes when we were growing up, as well as her own. She’s the best – by the time I got into home economics classes I knew just about as much as the teacher did!
What inspired you to pursue sewing?
I wanted to make my Barbie Dolls some stylish new clothes!
Reflecting on your early days of quilting, what beginner mistakes did you make?
On my first quilt I chose a terrible background fabric, then when I hand quilted it, instead of using quilting thread, I used two strands of regular sewing thread!
Is there block or pattern you could you make over and over again?
I really love making Sawtooth Star Blocks – they are so versatile, and are also quick to make! They can be used in combination with other blocks, as a border or just on their own. You can also incorporate them as cornerstones for sashing or borders. They are lovely for fussy cutting, too!
What serves as your muse when it comes to the creative design process?
Color is a huge inspiration for me, as well as traditional block designs.
What’s your most favorite part of quilting, and why? Least favorite?
My very favorite part is trimming the edges of the quilt before you add the binding! It’s like the magic moment when the top becomes an actual quilt! Least favorite…that’s hard, I really like every stage of the process. I guess basting would have to be my least favorite, but it’s really not that bad.
Is there a technique that you were hesitant about trying, only to discover that you ended up absolutely loving it?
I would have to say making structured bags with lots of hardware! It’s really fun and gratifying to create a great bag that has lovely detailing and nice hardware!
What is your favorite notion or gadget that you use every time you sew?
I have a wonderful handmade seam ripper and stiletto that was given to me by a friend, and it’s the perfect tool and so beautiful, too!
What do you do that you hope the “quilt police” never find out about?
That I hardly ever pin while I am piecing! 99 percent of the time I just line everything up as I go! (I do always pin borders, though…)
Do you have a sewing pet-peeve?
Not realizing the bobbin ran out and sewing a huge pile of pieces with just air! ARGH!!
Do you have a favorite quilt that you have made and why is it your favorite?
Definitely my Baby Jane quilt. Making all those 4 1/2 inch blocks is really like a master’s course for quilting and made me feel accomplished in so many techniques by the time I finished it! It took me many years, but I’m so glad I persevered and finished it.
What are your other crafty (and non-crafty) hobbies?
I like to embroider sometimes, and also knit and crochet on occasion. I also enjoy reading, especially science fiction and cozy mysteries!
If you could choose an all-expenses paid trip to anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
This is an easy one – I’d love to visit Paris again! I studied French in high school and got to visit Paris with my oldest daughter 12 years ago and it was amazing! I’d love to go for a longer stay and get the chance to explore more of that beautiful city.
To see the whole 2023 Island Batik Ambassador team, please visit: https://islandbatik.com/2023-ambassadors/
Stay tuned as we introduce you to more talented Island Batik Ambassadors and let us know in the comments below what else you want to ask Denise!