Interview with Patty Murphy

Posted by Deirdre Quirk on Apr 10th 2017

For the latest installment in our author interview series, we're speaking to Patty Murphy, the piecing genius behind Piecing Makeover. Take it away, Patty!

Where do you find your quilting or sewing inspiration? 

Everywhere. It can be a color combination I see in a magazine, flowers outside, even friends. I've driven down the road before and the way the light hangs in a curve has inspired me. Sometimes my kids say or draw something. I've even been known to draw inspiration from wallpaper! I find inspiration in antique quilts, too. 

Who has inspired your creativity? 

My mom was the first person to help light the creative fire in me, and the group of women in the Atlanta Intown Quilt Guild. It's a small group of incredible artists. I'm always learning new things from them!

How do you stay up-to-date on new trends?

Instagram is an easy way for me to keep up with trends, and it's fun to see everyone's work. Magazines are probably the other way I keep up-to-date with what's going on in quiltlandia. 

What is something we might not know about you? 

I'm half Ukranian and grew up celebrating ALL the holidays, I met my husband when I was seventeen, though we didn't date until well after high school and college, and I love Pink Floyd and Lucinda Williams.

What was your favorite part of the book writing or production process? 

Really? Pick one? I loved it all! Working with C&T, all the editors and production staff ... everything was amazing!

What are your go-to colors? 

I work with a lot of blue, but pink has been my go-to lately, perhaps to keep all the boys in my house away from my quilts.

What projects are you working on right now? 

I'm trying to finish up a few projects for friends before moving onto something new.

What's your favorite project that you've made? 

It changes. Usually my current projects are my favorites but I just finished a pink-and-gray, machine-pieced hexagon and LeMoyne Star quilt that's pretty outstanding, so it's my current fave!

Where do you shop for fabric? 

I shop at local quilt shops. My favorite is about a half hour from here in Decatur, Georgia.

Can you share with us one quilting or sewing tip? 

If your thread breaks, pull it out through the needle. Pulling thread backwards can cause damage to your machine and can help force lint into places it shouldn't be. This is particularly true if your machine is computerized.

How did you come up with the idea for your book? 

I worked in a quilt shop for years and saw the same struggles, especially for new and intermediate quilters, again and again. I kept wishing that someone would write a book to address those issues. After about ten years, I decided that person was me. I can honestly say that I NEVER thought I'd be a C&T author! It's incredible.

What is the one tool or notion you can't live without? 

My seam ripper. 

Thank you, Patty!

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