Designer Tidbits: Minick & Simpson - The Jolly Jabber Quilting Blog

Designer Tidbits: Minick & Simpson

Designer Tidbits interview with Minick & Simpson of Moda Fabrics

The gals behind Minick & Simpson really know how to pull at our Americana heart strings. Grant Park, the latest collection for Moda Fabrics, celebrates the turn of the century with bursting red, white, and blue florals, small stripes, and patriotic paisley. Today Polly and Laurie are here to tell us a bit more about Grant Park. But first, get a lesson in big stitch hand quilting from Polly at Quilt Market with this video tutorial!

Q: Tell us a little about the Grant Park collection. What were you inspired by?
A:We were inspied by a couple of things. We had scraps of antique fabrics, some sketches, and an idea for a new fabric line when I took the train to Chicago. One idea led to another. We wanted the fabrics to have a turn of the century feel to them (that’s 19th turning into the 20th century). Grant Park is a lovely park inside Chicago and Grant is also the name of Polly’s oldest grandson.

Q: What is your design process when beginning a new collection?
A:Sometimes it’s just an idea or a word. Sometimes it’s a scrap of antique fabric that we try to make a collection around. Usually it’s a combination of both.

Q: What design trends are you currently exploring?
A:In fabrics, we don’t follow trends very much. Our niche is Americana – sometime very early, sometimes recent vintage, but always Americana. In quilt designs we definitely try to have an ambitious appliqué quilt with every collection. We both love hand work and our customers now know that there will always be at least one project that will take a bit of time and commitment. We also try to have at least one project that is quick and easy too. That one is harder for us to design actually. We kind of have to fight against our nature for that.

Q:What projects do you hope to see made with Grant Park?
A:We love to be surprised! It’s always nice to see our patterns made with our fabric – that reinforces us, but it’s really a kick to see what other people come up with.

Q:How do you describe your style?
A:Well one thing that interested me greatly when Laurie and I started working together – found we used somewhat the same style be it wool or cotton. If Laurie is using red in a quilt, she uses every red available to her that works together. That is the same way I create in wool. So we knew that not only were we sisters and our tastes differ a bit, we work in the same manner. I would describe our style as Americana. We both love vintage fabrics and both have collected fabrics forever (and remember I do not sew, but fabric I love, and old fabric we both love). So when we are dealing with late 1800s or early 1900s, I think the theme we would agree on is Americana! And our customers seem to like what we like, which we will be forever grateful for!


  1. It's no secret that I'm their #1 fan! (There should be a plaque somewhere! 🙂 ) I'm always looking for ways to use the patriotics – like in Peyton at Play, the It's Sew Emma pattern. Hope they never quit printing these!

  2. Thank you for this video! One question though: what exactly is the type needle that is used? The exact details of the thread was mentioned and I think I recognised the brand of needle but not the type. Would love to know, thank you!