Fabric Design Begins Next Week!


class_fabricdesignclassI’ve been working day and night to finish this new class. I even just updated the syllabus to give you even more details on what we are doing in this class. It is 20% off for this session (because of the Grand Opening sale), and I hope you take advantage so I can see you in class! I’m going to show you how I print fabric from home, create repeats for production, get sketches and painting vectorized, and a whole lot more. I just finished editing the videos with Creative Director Jina Barney, designer Amanda Herring, designer Shari Butler, and designer Deena Rutter. Believe me, it’s going to be fun!!!

I know in future sessions I plan on interviewing more designers. Those who take this first session will also get any interviews I do forever after since I plan on just adding them into the class as we do new sessions.

The best is that the Fabric Design class comes on the heels of Quilt Market. I’m heading out tomorrow and trying to wrap up my schoolhouse and make and takes. We are also taking all the audio and camera equipment to do a CGTV episode! Yes, I know it has been a long time, but whewww! It’s been busy!

Instagramming for QM begins NOW!




Snow College’s Entrepreneurship Seminar

Yesterday I spoke at Snow College’s Entrepreneurship Seminar Series. It seems crazy to me that 4 and half years ago I didn’t know much at all about the industries I now design for. If you have ever wondered about my story, you can watch the hour long seminar I gave here: http://www.ihigh.com/snowbadgers/broadcast_260013.html?silverlight=1

Hope you enjoy! Today Lindsay and I are getting together to film our Christmas video. Should be fun!


Instagram and Other Such Things

I took the plunge last week and put the Instagram App on my iPhone. I’ll admit that I was a little terrified of using it so it took me a few days to pull it out and really try it. But after taking a couple of pictures, linking it up to my Facebook page (and I love that you can choose which photos get posted), messing around with all the cool filters, and checking out everyone else’s photos—well, I think I’m addicted.

If you want to check out my Instagram feed, you can subscribe to my user handle carinagardner. I also found that SnapWidget is the most user-friendly blog widget (see on my sidebar).


I think I am digging Instagram because it’s like a mini blog post. I get to see what everyone is up to in a single image. I (personally) prefer a picture to a tweet. It says so much more about what you are up to, how you live, and what your life is all about.

To narrator the photo above—That is a picture of the Spring 2012 Issue of Where Women Create Magazine. The photo has me looking pretty tan/sunburned in the middle of winter. I can ASSURE you, that I’m amazingly pasty white. Not in a good way. In my dreams I would look even a smidgeon that tan. If you get a chance to snag this fabulous magazine, you can find this pic in the Riley Blake Studio section.

And the photo to the left is of my Siri-girl sewing together a quilt. I have a new appreciation and love for 5 1/2 inch pre cut blocks. They are the best for little rugrats to create with. Both the girls sewed mini quilts while I cut bias for my new quilt. Yesterday was the first day I really saw the value of having two sewing machines in the studio. It was nice to not have to volley for my Bernina since Siri was all ready to go on her Singer.

Happy photo taking to you too!—Carina


Utah Business Magazine’s Top 40 Under 40

I’m still a little in shock that I made this year’s Top 40 Under 40—that is Utah Business Magazine’s top 40 executives under the age of 40. It’s an absolute honor, and I’m excited to meet everyone on the list at the end of the month.

If you want to read the short bit about me, you can read it here.

And while I am feeling very happy for what we have accomplished in the short four years I have been in the crafting/fabric industries, I’m just as excited for all the things to come. We have so many exciting things coming up during the next 6 months and I’m on the edge of my seat to share (soon!).

The crazy thing is looking back at how I started out (with a little digital scrapbooking shop in January 2008 while still teaching at the University of Minnesota) and my transition into scrapbooking papers, fabric, online teaching, workshops, licensing, and (the biggest leap of faith) manufacturing and designing sewing patterns. It has been an amazing four years for my family and myself.

When I talk about hard work in the article, I really mean it. It makes me grateful that the attitude of hard work instilled in my home. My father grew up on a farm and was the 8th child in a family of 9 children. He was the first to go to college. And my mother is an immigrant from Malaysia who took a scholarship to England to go to college.

I remember the stories they told me of how they started out…the first five years of my life that I don’t remember. From that to where I am now seems like such a fairytale that I will admit that I believe (as cheesy as it sounds) in American dream. I feel like I am living it.

I couldn’t feel more humble or lucky than I do right now.

Well, I got a lot more personal there than I was intending, which is always a little difficult for me because that comes with a feeling of vulnerability. But I wouldn’t be who am today without all the back story. Nor would I want to try to be a better parent, creative, business owner, or wife if it wasn’t for these kinds of reflections.

Thanks for following my work and being involved with everything I and my team have tried to do. I hope that we can continue to bring happiness to your lives through crafting, sewing, and creativity.


Carina Gardner Sewing Pattern Giveaway at the Boutique Cafe

At Quilt Market this last May I had the opportunity to visit with Daria at the Boutique Café. She has the interview up and a giveaway of one my sewing patterns. You’ll notice I make a big announcement about where my fabric is going at the end of the interview (did you catch it?). We will officially announce and show you some yummy samples of the new fabric line in our next newsletter.

Speaking of sewing patterns, I’m in the middle of finishing up two more patterns! I hope to have them finished up by the end of the month (waiting on my Pinfeathers, Dress Up, and Baby Safari to arrive to finish them up!). I can’t wait to show you! So back to the sewing machine for me!

Interview with Designer Holly Jones & Giveaway from My Cute Stamps

I have a very special interview with designer Holly Jones today! She is the owner and creator of My Cute Stamps, an absolutely DARLING store with her beautiful clear stamps! She also has a fabulous blog Creating Cupcakes. She’s also offered a darling stamp set to be given away to someone! Let’s meet her:



CarinaWhat kind of “designer” do you consider yourself? 

Holly: I started out as a graphic designer but as I worked at various jobs, I soon realized that I preferred Illustration over design. Now I consider myself an Illustrator.

Carina: Do you consider yourself a “creative” person?
HollyYes, growing up my dad owned a small print shop. I preferred playing with his trash (discarded papers, glue, inks, & etc.) more than I enjoyed playing with any of my toys. I love to learn new creative skills. I enjoy drawing, stamping, paper crafting, knitting, jewelry making, the list goes on & on.

CarinaDo you always feel creative?

HollyMost of the time. Most days I feel like there isn’t enough time to create everything I want to create.

Carina:  What kind of jobs have you had?

HollyMy 3 favorite jobs include: 1) Working at the computer lab it college. This is where I learned to use the computer & graphic design programs. I didn’t have a computer of my own until a few years ago, so it was fun to be able to use one everyday at work. 2) Being a “live in Nanny”. I got to explore the Eastern states with a great family whom I still keep in contact with. 3) Designer & Illustrator for Stampin’ Up! I worked here designing papers, products & stamp sets. I really enjoyed the environment and my fun and creative co-workers.

Carina: Tell me about being a mom and your “design work”.

Holly:  I work at home with my 2 cute girls. I wouldn’t trade it for anything, It can be challenging at times. My girls are both young and demand a lot of attention, so I really don’t get much work done until they go to bed at night. My oldest daughter is 4. She loves crafts, she has recently been interested in drawing her own stamp sets. She keeps asking when we will be selling her cute designs. I don’t think it will be much longer before she’s ahead of me in her creative skills.

Carina: What do you do now?

Holly:  Right now my husband and I have two businesses, Vinyl Wall Art & My Cute Stamps. He does most of the orders & technical stuff, while I do all the design work and marketing. I’m currently designing some new Reposition-able vinyl for Vinyl Wall Art, and getting our display for the Stamp business ready for the Salt Lake Scrapbook USA expo which takes place next week.

Carina: Tell me more about My Cute Stamps? What made you get started with that?

HollyInitially, I started doing Wall Art because I had a 2 year non-compete contract with Stampin’ Up! I still enjoy designing wall art, but I missed designing for the craft industry. My non-compete contract with Stampin’ Up! ended in October (the same month as my birthday) My husband thought it would be fun to order me some stamps that I designed in celebration of both occasions. I really loved designing the stamps, and had forgotten how much I love to design products for the crafting industry. I posted some of my stamp designs on the internet, and the response was fabulous, so we decided to set it up as a business. I’m really glad we did. I’m having a great time coming up with new set ideas & new product ideas (coming soon.)

Carina: What is your favorite stamp set?

Holly: It would be Eek! A Monster!




Carina: Where do you see yourself in 10 years with your designwork?

HollyI hope to have an entire line of products within the next 10 years. More than just stamps, perhaps coordinating papers, and craft kits.

Carina: What makes My Cute Stamps Unique?

Holly: When I design new stamps, I really try to keep in mind how the stamps will be used. I try to make each set as versatile as possible. I want the end user to be able to use each set for multiple occasions and projects. 


A big thank you to Holly for doing the interview! And she has been really generous to giveaway this darling stamp set: Spunky Nature Stamp Set! It’s my favorite set! 





What do you have to do to win it? Comment on this blog and your name will be entered into the drawing! If you go over to check out My Cute Stamps and tell me your favorite set, I’ll put your name in twice! Easy! This giveaway will end on Saturday at 9AM MST and winners will be announced on Saturday morning at 10AM MST.  Good luck!