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Get To Know - Me & My Sister

Get To Know - Me & My Sister

Written by: 
Samantha Beck

Barbara Groves and Mary Jacobson are Me & My Sister Designs.

GTK Me & My Sister - Barbara and Mary 2016

They have had their hands in just about every aspect of quilting, and the quilting business.  They got into the business-side of the industry many years ago as show owners, and after selling their shop, they expanded that love into a second business, Me & My Sister Designs.  It began with writing quilt patterns, then they submitted a design proposal to Moda Fabrics.  That led to more patterns and books, tools, including developing the SideWinder portable bobbin winder, and teaching.

GTK Me & My Sister - Screen Porch MMS200543

Screen Porch - MMS 200543.  TThis fat-quarter friendly quilt finishes at 64" x 80", and it's made with Back Porch.

This sisterly duo loves easy quilts, and they are always looking at traditional quilt blocks to update them so they're easier to make.   They are constantly re-designing everything they see in bright and vibrant color.  

GTK Me & My Sister - Ruffled Zipper Pouch Colorful

Ruffled Zippper Pouch MMS 20545.  This was made with Grow.

Getting their quilts finished quickly so that they can start the next project is also a priority!

GTK Me & My Sister - Double Wide Dresden

This Double Wide Dresden table-runner was made with Me and My Sister's Merry and Bright collection.  The Double Wide Dresden Ruler was a spin on a classic Dresden Plate block, only made a little easier, and with a few options.  Barbara and Mary designed the ruler, and then wrote a book with ideas on using the ruler, including variations.  The Double Wide Dresden Book.

And yes, they really are sisters, and have been sewing together for over 30 years!  (There are five sisters, and four of them are quilters.  They're still working on Sister No. 5.)

GTK Me & My Sister - Two Fat Quarter Basket 

The original Two Fat Quarter Bucket - this is made with Merry and Bright.

What is your favorite color?

Barb - Green!  Mary - Pink!

GTK Me & My Sister - A Tisket A Tasket 2FQ Basket

A Tisket A Tasket - MMS 190540.  This was made with Good Day.

What is your favorite season and why?

Mary - Probably summer.  I'm the lover of bright colors for this team, and that has a big influence in the colors that end up in our collections.  Barbara gravitates to earth tones, and deep rich colors.  She loves fall.

GTK Me & My Sister - Ditty Bag Trio

Ditty Bag - MMS 200544.  This trio of bags was made with Back Porch, Too Cute to Spook, and Merry and Bright.

Are you morning people, or are you night owls?

Barb - I'm definitely a night owl. Once I start sewing on a project I can stay up into the wee hours of the morning. I usually don’t stop sewing until I start making mistakes.  Mary is more of a morning person, she doesn't like staying up late sewing unless there is a deadline.  (She likes her "beauty sleep.")

GTK Me & My Sister - Merry and Bright Ruffled Zipper Bags

Ruffled Zipper Bag - MMS 20545.  These were made with the Merry and Bright collection.

When you were children, what did you want to grow up to be?

I always wanted to be a police officer, and a dancer. What a combination, right?  I can barely skip, let alone dance.  Mary always wanted to be a Fairy Princess, and I think she’s just about got that dream accomplished!

GTK Me & My Sister - Pom Poms Quilt

Pom Poms - MMS 1900542.  This Layer Cake quilt finishes at 57" x 65", and was made with their Fiddle Dee Dee collection.

What inspires you daily?

It could be the smallest thing like a notecard, or a small graphic on a a billboard. We actually got an idea for a quilt block from a seat cushion at a Village Inn pancake house. We get a lot of catalogs, and sometimes we just page through them for ideas. When a fabric group deadline is approaching, we pay more attention to everything!

What is your favorite food?

We both love Mexican food! And we both like it hot, but we don’t tolerate that as much as we used to.  We both love chips and salsa and can easily turn that into a meal!  My favorite is green chiles, and Mary's is red chiles.

GTK Me & My Sister - A Tisket A Tasket Red

A Tisket A Tasket - MMS 190540.  This basket was made with Red-iculously in Love.

Where was your best vacation?

Several years ago we had the opportunity to teach in Switzerland! We had a terrific time, and loved every minute of it. Our husbands met us when we finished with our work, and we traveled down the Rhine River visiting castles, eating, and sightseeing until we eventually flew home together from Amsterdam. Now that’s a working vacation!

What is your favorite movie? Actress or Actor?

I don’t know if I should admit this, but I like movies that are on the dark side. Shawshank Redemption had one of the best endings ever. And pretty much any movie with George Clooney

What are the words you live by?

Don’t put off till tomorrow what you can do today.


For more with Barbara Groves and Mary Jacobson: