Stitch Craft Create Blog

Meet Author Joy-Lily + Fiskars Prize Giveaway!

Update 3/29: Congratulations to Laurie A. who won the Fiskars Giveaway! The giveaway is now closed, but please keep reading for a great interview with author, Joy-Lily. Thanks for all of the great answers you left in the blog comments – we love hearing from you!

It’s another big day here on Stitch Craft Create! Not only do we have an interview with Joy-Lily, author of the new quilting book Carefree Quilts, we also have another giveaway!!!  Read the full post for details on the giveaway and how to enter. And don’t forget to pick up your own copy of Carefree Quilts—it’s 50% off (a savings of nearly $14!) this week only here at the Martha Pullen store.

Available now!


Question: When did you start crafting? What craft did you start with?

    Joy-Lily: I started sewing at about age 4. My mother was a dressmaker and her scraps were my raw materials. Her electric sewing machine must have fascinated me because she let me try it when I was 5. I have used them ever since.

    Q: What other crafts do you do besides quilting?

      JL: Anything and everything with cloth and fiber. I felt, dye my own  fleece, shibori dye quilt fabrics, print on fabrics, paint silk, do collage with my dyed silks. I used to knit and crochet. In the 1980s I owned a rubber stamp company and made stamped art cards. I have mostly supported myself with my art; designing, producing, teaching and writing about it.

      Heat Wave Quilt from Carefree Quilts

      Q: What made you decide to write Carefree Quilts?

        JL: Throughout my career I have written articles for craft and quilt magazines. Writing a book has been a lifelong goal of mine. This book came from a series of sampler quilt lessons I taught in 2008. I’ve got parts of about 6 other quilting and craft books in my head or in my computer right now.

        Q: What is the best part about writing a book? What is the most difficult?

          JL: The very best part is signing autographs—it’s a kick! I really like designing the blocks and the projects. Editing the technical details of the instructions and making them clear is the most difficult part.

          Carefree Sampler Quilt from Carefree Quilts

          Q: How do you get inspired when you’re feeling a lack of creativity?

            JL: Books, magazines and museum visits always inspire me. I like to meet with art quilt friends to support one another. My problem isn’t creative block —it’s procrastination. I’ve discovered that I get work on one project done by procrastinating about another one I should be doing instead. I call this “creative procrastination.”

            Q: What is the skill or technique that most intimidates you?

              JL: Free motion topstitching on a short arm machine is not easy for me. So I learned to do it on a longarm machine instead. That’s fun!

              Zigzag Tote Bag from Carefree Quilts

              Q: What’s the best advice you could give to a new quilter? 

                JL: Forget about perfection—it takes time to master any medium. Enjoy yourself with designs that don’t require perfect piecing—like the ones in Carefree Quilts.

                Q: What tool, notion or material can you not live without?

                  JL: At first I was going to say the rotary cutter. But it would be useless without the self healing cutting mat. That’s the best invention in the quilting world!

                  Q: How has quilting changed your life?

                    JL: Since I have been sewing all my life, quilting hasn’t really changed it, just intensified it. Skills I developed when I worked as an illustrator and graphic designer—color theory, value identification, layout and drawing—are especially useful in my quilting and quilt designing.

                    Square Dance Quilt from Carefree Quilts 
                    Thank you to Joy-Lily for being with us today and answering our questions!

                    Joy-Lily’s sewing genes go back to the dawn of history. An early ancestor invented the needle – really!  Her mother and grandfather sewed clothes for a living. Parting with family tradition, she trained to be a graphic artist at Cass Tech and College of Art & Design in Detroit. She freelanced in New York as an illustrator and print designer, before the dawn of computer graphics.


                    She returned to the textile fold on the streets of Manhattan: selling batik-dyed underwear in her own designs began to overtake her graphics work. Joy-Lily’s textile art repertoire has since expanded to screen printing, marbling fabric, stamp art, natural dyeing, shibori, silk painting, fabric collage, felting and art quilting. Her art cloth has also been turned into commercial quilt fabric. Plain fabric is just not safe around her!


                    A California Arts Council grant allowed her to teach classes in quilting, silk painting and fabric printing at a San Francisco senior center for eleven years. Currently she teaches a wide range of fabric art techniques, including free-style quilting, to textile guilds, adult education classes and at art centers.


                    Joy-Lily’s quilt designs have appeared in major quilt magazines. Her art quilts have been published and exhibited internationally. She continues to play where the fabric edge meets art. This is her first book. See more of her art at

                    And now, on to the Stitch Craft Create Giveaway!
                    The Giveaway is now closed.

                    Today, March 23, 2012 begins our next giveaway contest. From March 23 at 12:01 A.M. EST to March 29 at 12:01 A.M. EST, you can enter one time to win a Fiskars Cutting Prize Package, with a retail value of $75! This contest is open to residents of the United States and Canada.

                    This fantastic prize package includes:
                    24 x 36” Fiskars Cutting Mat
                    45mm Fiskars Rotary Cutter
                    Pair of orange-handled Fiskars scissors
                    It’s easy to enter. 
                    Just follow these instructions:
                    1. Locate the Giveaway widgit on the right column of the blog, labeled “Fiskars Cutting Prize Package.”
                    2. Log in by providing your name and email address on the widgit, or log in with Facebook.
                    3. Leave a comment on our blog that answers the following question: “What kinds of crafting do you do: quilting, sewing, pattern designing, crocheting, knitting, paper crafting, etc.” After you complete this task, click the “Do It!” and then “Enter” buttons on the Giveaway widget to check off the task. You must complete this task to qualify.

                    Thanks to Fiskars for the fabulous prizes! 

                    Be sure to check out their Facebook page.
                    Good luck to everyone, and check back for more interviews, sneak peeks and giveaways as we begin to wrap up National Craft Month!
                    Terms and Conditions
                    In this giveaway, one (1) entrant will win a Fiskars Cutting Prize Package (consisting of (1) rotary cutting mat, (1) rotary cutter, and (1) scissors) valued at approximately $75.00 USD. The entrant must live in the United States or Canada to qualify. Each entrant must complete Step 3 as outlined above, for a total of one (1) entry. All entries must be in by March 29, 2012 at 12:01 A.M. to qualify.

                    All entries must be entered through the Rafflecopter widgit located in the far right column of the blog; completing the task without entering it in the widgit will make you ineligible for the prize. To do this, complete each task, then press the “Enter” button on the widgit. The drawing will be performed at random through Rafflecopter’s random number generator, and the winner will be announced within two (2) business days of the end of the contest. We will post the winner both on this post and on the widgit.  

                    39 thoughts on “Meet Author Joy-Lily + Fiskars Prize Giveaway!

                    1. I make tons of different kinds of crafts from sewing home goods, to quilting, to embroidery, and knitting to name a few. I like to try new things and constantly create. Thanks for the chance to win!

                    2. I do it all, sewing including historical reproductions from 1850-1918, crochet, knit, machine embroidery, quilt, cross stitch, even give my hand at pattern drafting. want to learn to tat and smock next.

                    3. oh my I do it all too and fabric to me is like candy in a candy store..I love it and all kinds of crafts, quilting of course, sewing, embroidery, doll making you name it I have done it. Would love to be entered in the giveaway because frankly I could use the items others have been worked to death….Thanks so much!

                    4. i quilt and have taught classes in quilting. i love to knit and crochet. i’ve done stain glass, calligraphy, jewelry making and really got involved in cross stitch many years ago. i just bought a kit for needle punching. ever since i was little i’ve loved to use my hands and to create something. my mother was a professional seamstress and i use to see her sew every day, likewise, she loved to do crafts also.

                    5. I love to sew, craft, embroider, crochet, cross stitch, and just about anything to do with fabric, glue, scissors etc. Just got a new 16 needle embroidery machine. Let’s see what I can create with THAT. 🙂 I’ll try about anything.

                    6. My one big love is knitting but I also enjoy crocheting, quilting, tapestry, cross stitching, embroidery and dressmaking. I love learning new crafts and skills although at the end of the day I always return to my beloved knitting.

                    7. I started out with quilting many years ago and then I went and mixed it up with crafting like wreaths made with fabric etc..then I moved to beading and crazy quilting. Then I decided to challenge myself to making clothes and I did and still do but really easy things. And most recently have mixed different fibers with fabic for art quilts. I love being involved in anything with fabric and threads and beads….thanks for asking.

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