By Patricia Belyea
WAUCONDA WA I was completely taken by Bird By Bird at the 2014 Festival of Quilts in Birmingham UK. Winning first-place in the traditional category, the 74" x 74" quilt was like something out of a candy shop—sweet as could be with delectable colors, rickrack trim around delightful details, and a scalloped edge.
Who could create a quilt like that? The answer is Philippa Naylor—a quilter with great style, a love of color, and the highest technical abilities.
Years ago I read Philippa’s first book, Quilting in the Limelight, and became familiar with her story. While living in Saudi Arabia, Philippa worked as a lingerie designer and a maker of bespoke wedding dresses. Then, in 1996, Philippa took a quilting class and her life was forever changed.
Philippa has gone on to win awards at many quilt shows in the UK, where she currently lives, and the United States. In recent years, miniatures have captured her attention. Her quilt Circuit Training (11.5" x 11.5") won first place in the Miniature category at 2018 Festival of Quilts in Birmingham, 2019 American Quilters Society show in Paducah, and 2019 International Quilt Festival in Houston.
For the last few months, I've been a voyeur of Philippa’s vivid life in Yorkshire on Instagram (@naylorphilippa). Whether viewing her garden or seeing her newest creation from the oven, Philippa has a flair for everything. Especially with her wardrobe!
Last week, I interviewed Philippa over the phone to learn what she’s been up to. Without foreseeing that COVID-19 was going to cancel in-person workshops, Philippa started filming online quilting classes last year. Called Quilters’ Question Time, Philippa creates a new episode every month that focuses on a different quilting technique.
Now that I’ve experienced a few classes on Quilters’ Question Time, I can suggest a new name for the series—Quilters’ Answer Time. Philippa is not only exciting teacher, she’s very generous with her knowledge. There’s lots to learn for even the most experienced quilters—especially best practices to ensure incredible results.
BELOW: Here’s a photo that Philippa sent to me. Can you imagine free-motion stitching such a huge quilt on your domestic sewing machine? Titled Star Sign, this award-winning quilt measures 89" x 89".
Philippa bursts with non-stop energy. As she said to me: I can’t sit still. I always have to be doing something. If I’m sitting in the garden and see some weeds, I just have to get up and pull them out.
If you want lively Philippa to teach and encourage you in your sewing room, sign up for Quilters’ Question Time. Her 3-hour classes are $15 each. Her one-year package of 12 monthly classes is $150. I promise you will thank me for this! For the link +click here
BELOW Another miniature by Philippa—Sewing Bee, 12" x 12". Whole cloth with colored threads.
Please note that I received no compensation from Quilters’ Question Time for recommending Philippa’s online classes. PB