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Potholder swap, owl pattern & good karma.

December 1, 2011

Our friends at the Fraser Valley Modern Quilt Guild invited the Vancouver Modern Quilt Guild to do a potholder swap. I signed up and got the brief on my partner, Eryn: Likes turquoise, colourful decor, anything funky, “Value Village chic”, modern quilts, Gees Bend quilts, Japanese coffee mugs and loves owls. She also mentioned that she has Helen Dardik prints in her kitchen. And to finish off, she  wrote that she is a “mix of modern/retro and minimalist traditional.”  OK, well, plenty to work with there!

I started off designing an owl potholder with the thought that if it turned out OK I’d make a pattern out of it. It was a great design for using up scraps. The turquoise feathers are scraps of shot cotton from the special Rob quilt. The little heart print is one of my Happy Sew Lucky Spoonflower designs. The divine blobby yellow binding is Brook Sunshine Dots by Studio E.

Owl pattern

On the back I decided to piece the word “HOOT” which co-incidentally also kinda reads as HOT. This serendipitous little fact made me happy, given that it was a potholder. I know. It doesn’t take much to amuse me. Whatever!

Lovin’ that Hugs & Kisses Candy Loulouthi fabric in the “H” by Anna Maria Horner. The yellow daisy fabric is also a Happy Sew Lucky design available at Spoonflower. I’m super happy with how the owl potholder turned out, but thinking about it now, it’s a fair bit of work for something you’re likely going to dunk in lasagne sauce. So maybe this pattern is better suited for a cushion cover or small quilt. Opinions welcome / encouraged on this debate.

For the second potholder I seriously lucked out. I was at the fabric store looking for the tree bark on the owl one, when I walked past a display of fabulousness that had a sign on it that said “Designed by Helen Dardik.” I nearly keeled over. I knew Helen’s work as a Canadian illustrator, and had admired it for some time. But I’m obviously not an avid enough follower, as I didn’t know that she designed fabric. This is her second fabric line. Her style is retro-funky, whimsical and colourful. Her latest line is called Toomuchery and when I looked closer at them in the store display, I realized that I had already bought a few of the designs in the past, not realizing that they were Helen Dardik’s. The design that caught my eye on this day though, was a series of 6″square panels – they practically had “potholder” written all over them!

Talk about karma, huh? So I snagged some immediately, and here’s what I did with it:

Helen Dardik fabric

Well, Eryn, the type is kind of Gee’s Bend-ish at a stretch, there are no Japanese coffee mugs, and I am physically incapable of doing minimalist or traditional, but aside from that I think I got everything covered.

15 Comments leave one →
  1. Eryn permalink
    December 1, 2011 6:01 pm

    I couldn’t love these potholders more – with or without a Japanese mug!! Oddly (or fabulously) enough I just purchased the entire Brook collection by Studio E a few weeks back. Everything was meant to be. These potholders are a cotton version of kismet…

    • berene permalink
      December 1, 2011 6:39 pm

      Yippee! I ❤ kismet. So glad you love them.
      Just so you know, I did Google "Japanese mugs" and not a whole lot came up. Are you the only person who collects these? And what are they, mugs made by Japanese people, mugs with Japanese designs on? I think you may need to send me a pic. Just so I know that they actually do exist and that you didn't just make it up to sound exotic. 😀

      • Eryn permalink
        December 5, 2011 4:48 pm

        They do lend me an exotic air, don’t they. Well yes, in fact, they do exist. And I have many. I will take a pic tonight just for you…

  2. Janita permalink
    December 2, 2011 10:10 am

    I love these!! definitely think the owl is too much work for all the muck that goes on my pot holders…. but maybe as a mitt and the owl goes on the top – I think that would be fabulous…. I really love these.

  3. December 4, 2011 5:09 pm

    these are fabulous Berene! The owl would make a great pillow or little wall quilt, but way to special to be a use it kind of pot holder. I love the prints – I must go looking for more Dardik – very cool!

    • berene permalink
      December 4, 2011 6:59 pm

      I found them at Fabricana in Richmond about 6 weeks ago. I’m guessing they’d still have it. The whole range is quite fabulous.

  4. leann barnhart permalink
    January 14, 2012 3:03 pm

    Is the owl pattern available online?

    • berene permalink
      January 14, 2012 11:39 pm

      Hi Leann
      Thanks for asking. I am working on the pattern as a cushion cover size, and it should be available soon. I will drop you a line as soon as it is. Were you hoping to make the smaller potholder size or something bigger? Now would be a good time to tell me as I could maybe adjust my design accordingly. Let me know what you think.

  5. August 27, 2015 2:32 pm

    Did you ever make a pattern for this owl? I would love it! Cbiro @

    • August 27, 2015 4:31 pm

      Hi Christina.
      Thanks for asking. I have most of it done, but the instructions need some tweaking. I also would like it tested so if you’re up for the challenge jet me know. That’ll put a little fire under my butt to get ‘er done! Let me know. It’ll be September sometime.
      Cheers, Berene

  6. Morgan Mitchell permalink
    November 15, 2015 10:15 pm

    Amazing potholder!!! Love the owl, is there a pattern to purchase?! Thanks so much

    • November 16, 2015 9:02 am

      Hi Morgan. I have one in the works. Will notify you when it’s in my Etsy store. Thanks for writing!

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