Aspiring Designer - ShannonMac Designs

Pattern Revolution is happy to be hosting the first Aspiring Designer's Challenge. Please join me in congratulating these new designers for making through all the hurdles it takes to get from inspiration to release and enjoy browsing their creations all this week.  Please help me officially welcome today's Aspiring Designer, ShannonMac Designs, to the world of PDF Pattern Design.

I'm very excited to be a part of the Aspiring Designer's Challenge! I have been designing quilts for a little bit now, and before today, I had 18 patterns available in my Craftsy Shop. I am now ready to release my fourth mystery quilt! This one is called Windowboxes, and it starts today!

Windowboxes is presented in 4 sizes: lap, twin, full, and queen/king. If you're doing your first mystery, or maybe your first quilt, the lap size is perfect. This is a pretty easy project, no complicated piecing or weird angles or special tools needed (beyond the standard quilting tools). The fabric requirements, cutting instructions, and pre-sewing instructions are available today. Next Saturday, I will upload a new file to Craftsy, overwriting the first one, which will also include the first clue. Each week after, I will do the same, adding a new clue each time till the mystery is solved and the top is complete.

While I can't show you photos of this quilt (it IS a mystery, after all!), I can show you photos of my past mystery quilts, so you can see the types of quilts I design.

My first mystery was called Stepping Stones, and I designed it as a fundraiser for the Susan G. Komen 3 Day (I didn't end up raising enough to walk, but the pattern did raise almost $400 before the fundraising deadline).

My second was called Starry-Eyed Surprise, which I did as another fundraiser for the same walk. This one didn't do as well, but I think it was because I didn't wait very long after the first before releasing it, and many of the people that had participated in my first one weren't ready for a second one!

My most recent mystery is called Waste Not, Want Not! I gave it that name because while I was still in the designing stages of this pattern, I was out driving one day and had this epiphany. I HATE wasting fabric. I will skimp as much as possible when I cut so I use as little as possible to get the result I want. That day, I realized that I could design this quilt and use the cutaway pieces to create another baby quilt top! In fact, by the time I was done designing, I had enough extra blocks (that would have been scraps had I not stitched them together) to add a couple borders and make TWO baby quilt tops. I had almost no waste from this pattern, and that made the frugal part of my brain really happy! And the fun part is that I didn't say anything about the bonus baby quilt tops till the second to last clue was released, so it was a surprise!

Queen sized quilt top

One of the bonus baby quilt tops...SURPRISE!

So now that you've seen my first three, it's time for my newest mystery. I have been hard at work designing it for a while, and I'm excited to release it as part of this Aspiring Designer's Challenge. I hope you'll play along! If you've never done a mystery quilt, they're a lot of fun, and it's a surprise at the end when you finally get to see the completed top. Each week, I'll post the next "clue", and you sew it up and set it aside till later, when it's needed for another clue. You'll sew in easy, manageable steps, but you won't see the final product till it's done! And if you've never done a quilt top at all, they're a fun way to start because you can learn basic techniques without being overwhelmed with having the entire pattern in front of you at once. You have a whole week to complete each step before starting something new.

Mystery quilts are the reason I got into quilting in the first place. I came across one online 7 years ago and decided to give it a try (having barely sewn a stitch before that), and I had so much fun doing it! I hope that you'll take a look and give it a try. If you do, please join my Facebook group, Mystery Quilts by Shannon, where you can post pictures, ask questions, and chat with other mystery quilters. And be sure to follow my blog, either here on Blogger or on Bloglovin', to get updates on what patterns I'm working on.

And now, it's time for a giveaway! I will be giving away one copy of my new mystery to one lucky person. (You'll need to have a Craftsy account). Once a winner is chosen, I will contact Craftsy and have the pattern added to the winner's pattern library, so notifications will be sent when I update the file with new clues each week. Enter here!

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