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Show 1806 - Quilt Teams: Spouses & Sisters

Featuring: Mary & Garry Olson / Barbara Groves & Mary Jacobson

Posts On: March 13, 2016


Mary & Garry Olson are a quilting couple. Garry designs the quilts (he majored in art) and Mary sews them. Many of Garry’s designs are based on a combination of Jacobean, Persian and Celtic influences. He demos how a design takes shape, from an initial sketch to a finalized drawing. Mary takes Garry’s designs and makes a pattern, often adding appliqué elements. She shares how she uses trapunto to increase interest. Mary claims she sews at the speed of a turtle, but she and Garry are winning top prizes with their quilts. Mary uses blue painter’s tape to create her crosshatch designs.

Next, sister team Barbara Groves and Mary Jacobson of Me and My Sister Designs have quilter cred: they have owned a quilt shop together, written books and patterns, and designed fabric lines for Moda. They share a clever four-patch technique that will impress you!

Show Information

From Chapter One

Mary & Garry show us how they work together from Mary deciding which design she would like to quilt to Garry for drawing the designs and back to Mary for the longarm stitching process.

From Chapter Two

Garry’s favorite design to work up in a drawing is the Jacobean design and he states that his inspiration came from the book More William Morris Appliqué by Michelle Hill. Garry explains how he listens to his boss (Mary) first tell him what she wants and then he gets to the drawing board to start sketching. Mary then takes the sketch to fabric, cuts her pieces for machine appliqué out and digs right in to appliqué her quilt (with only raw edge finish buttonhole stitches).

To order the book, go here.

From Chapter Three

Mary discusses how she loves to work with organic elements and how she puts her INNOVA to the test. Mary talks about how she went from her very first longarm to what made her decide to purchase an INNOVA longarm machine. Mary is known as a turtle from her fellow quilters because she stitches very, very slowly to ensure the perfect stitches.

From Chapter Four

Barbara & Mary (sisters) explain to the audience how they became fabric designers for MODA as they love nothing but bright, bright colors. Barbara used to be an X-Ray technician for 25 years before she found her love of quilting. Barbara and Mary talk about how they love what they do and why designing each fabric in the brightest colors has meaning for them.

#10 sewswanky 2016-03-29 14:50
I really enjoyed seeing how Gary designs the quilt and Mary puts it into fabric, but! I was really disappointed in the longarm segment. I thought we would learn more about how Mary quilts and not so much about the machine. I understand that the machine manufacture is a sponsor and they pay for advertising. The show should be about learning from an artist and the advertising should stick to their ads.
#9 christopherwalken 2016-03-27 04:27
issue with playback! just as i was to see next seg. why?
#8 sarah21 2016-03-20 01:59
So nice to back and watching the Quilt show. I can believe the amazing work that husband and wife team Mary and Gary Olson do. It is truly stunning. I've think that's where I am heading too! Although I'm not ready nor have all the skills I am trying put my own studio together so that one day it will happen. I love the melding of three styles together with vines flowers and bird's how wrong can you get it! Thanks for the great show Jules21.
#7 Leighway 2016-03-19 15:28
Absolutely fantastic show! I love how Mary and Gary work together each respecting the other's strengths and weaknesses. What creations come from that collaboration!
And the sisters segment was just so happy. Loved watching them interact and love how they invite beginning quilters to come along and succeed.
You're all doing such a good job!
#6 donnameee 2016-03-18 18:23
thanks for another great show TQS
#5 quilter544 2016-03-17 01:39
Loved this show will never be able to get a long arm. But machine is good. Would love a stitch regulator. Want to try the Celtic knot. Love them.
#4 Amethyst 2016-03-16 19:56
Love the show. Mary and Garry's quilts are spectacular. And thank you, Mary for demonstrating your turtle quilting. I machine quilt slow also but after your demonstration I will slow down more if I need to. Your demo was actually liberating. Long arms are sold with the idea that they sew "5 thousand" stitches a minute and taught that way also. For me, slow and sure equals more accurate.
#3 Roseamongthorns 2016-03-15 15:31
What an awesome show! Mary's can-do attitude is inspiring. I love how they respect each other's strengths and their natural banter. Mary & Garry Olson - what a talented team!
#2 Pemela 2016-03-14 16:20
Thank you TQS (once again) for a wonderful show, it was a pleasure to watch. Mary and Garry are an exceptionally gifted team their quilts are unique and beautiful.
#1 herteddyness 2016-03-13 13:52
What a remarkably talented quilter! Thanks for this, TQS
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