Spotlight: Natalia Bonner and Piece n Quilt
Natalia Bonner is the force behind Piece N Quilt, a comprehensive online resource for quilters. Natalia describes herself as a “crazy person, professional longarm quilter, mom, author, wife, fabric designer.” On the site, she offers original quilt patterns, fabrics, notions, books, and a fun and informative blog. She also has quilts for sale, custom quilting and free online tutorials. Natalia and her mother, Kathleen Whiting, together design quilt patterns. Both Natalia and Kathleen have won awards for their quilts, and their quilts have been shown in several quilting magazines. They are both published authors, with multiple quilting books to their names. And now they have designed a fabric line for Moda Fabrics called Thrive. They describe their fabric line “a modern blend—“a cross-over of tone-on-tones and a ‘batiky’ look.”
Natalia was raised in a family of sewers, so she grew up watching quilters and sewers at work. She would occasionally sew and make quilts then, but when she was pregnant with her first child, just over ten years ago, she quit her full time job and bought a long-arm machine. As Natalia says, “As crazy as it was and has been since it’s a decision that I am grateful for every single day.”
Shortly after Natalia bought her longarm she started blogging as a way to keep in touch with family whom lived far away from her, and to show them the quilts and quilting that she was doing. Today, as a part of her website, her blog has many followers in the quilting community.
After sharing her work online for several years, Natalia was approached with the opportunity to write her first book; Beginner’s Guide to Free-Motion Quilting. After that, she was asked to teach quilting classes. She started teaching on the local level, with local quilt guilds and retreats. Over the past few years she has travelled all over the United States to teach quilting. She leads classes both online and in person, with a Craftsy class, a few TV spots that she’s appeared in, and in-person classes at shows, shops and guilds.
Natalia quilts all day long every day, at least 5 days a week, and has been for the last ten years. According to her, scientists say that it takes 10,000 hours of practice before someone can become a professional. So, according to her, “I’m hoping by now, 10 years in I can finally call myself a pro.”
We asked Natalia what are some of her proudest moments in her quilting career, and this is what she had to say:
“My proudest moments have to be, the release of my first book; Beginner’s Guide to Free-Motion Quilting. I am super excited each time that one of my books is published, but there was something special about that first book.
The release of our fabric line, Thrive, with Moda Fabrics. It’s a dream that I honestly didn’t think I would ever be able to fulfill.
Becoming a Gammill Quilt Artist. I cried…a lot!
Winning the award at 2017 for Best Machine Quilting Framed on the Madonna quilt that I custom machine quilted for Brittany Burton.”
To learn more about Natalia and see what she has to offer, go to www.piecenquilt.com
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