Meet Terri Vanden Bosch, runner-up winner in the 2017 AccuQuilt Quilt Block Design Contest, and AccuQuilt 2016 Quilt Block Contest grand prize winner! One look at her Shell Canyon Road quilt block and you’ll see why.
Terri is an award-winning quilt designer who has entered and won many quilting competitions. She started quilting over 25 years ago and was instantly hooked.
More than just an avid quilter, Terri has turned her hobby into a career. She creates around 15 quilts a year to add to her own personal collection or to give away. She also designs 30-45 original quilts per year for publications and patterns. She doesn’t stop there, though. Terri owns a long arm quilting business where she quilts an average of 150 customer quilts per year!
We talked with Terri about her fan favorite quilt, Shell Canyon Road and about all things quilting. We applaud her zest for quilting and life. Following is a Q&A with the fan favorite winner herself.
AccuQuilt: Terri, how does it feel to be an award-winning quilt designer?
Terri Vanden: Having my designs validated with a first-place win in 2016 and second place win in 2017 has been just the creative boost I needed to jumpstart my creativity again!!
AQ: What was your inspiration for your award-winning Shell Canyon Road quilt block?
TV: For our 30th anniversary my husband bought me a used pickup camper. Yep—that’s what I asked for!! We put our motorcycle on a trailer and hooked it up behind the pickup and traveled out to Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. We parked the pickup/camper in Cody for a week. Then with the motorcycle we explored Yellowstone and parts of the Big Horn Mountains. On the ride through Shell Canyon in the Big Horn Mountains, I was inspired by the richness of the red rock canyons, the luscious green fresh mown hay, and the babbling blue stream running along the side of Highway 14. I am sad to say that I was so busy taking in the scenery that I forgot to take out my camera to capture the memories. The quilt block—Shell Canyon Road—is my interpretation in quilt block form of that ride through the Big Horn Mountains.
You can check my blog post for more blocks that I entered into the contest that were inspired by that motorcycle trip. http://meanderingsalonglizardcreek.blogspot.com/2017/08/wonder-and-wander-together.html
AQ: Have you shared your love of quilting with others? If so, who have you inspired to start quilting?
TV: I share my love of quilting with whoever will listen!! I met my best friend through a quilting project. I was chairman for our local private school’s fundraiser auction. I had the brilliant(crazy) idea that each of the 9 grades—k-8th—needed to make a signature quilt and then the quilts would be auctioned off at the fundraiser. Two moms from each class volunteered to make each quilt. I offered help to any mom who did not know what they were doing!! That was a busy fall!! One of the third grade mom’s knew how to sew—so she put the quilt top together very well and then came over to my house for help with the quilting. And the crazy quilting friendship has been ever since!! We have been going to a monthly sewing/quilting club for almost 20 years!! We have discussed and cried together over our children’s problems and joys and now are starting the same process with our grandchildren!!
Also—my daughter did not inherit the quilting gene—yet!! But she is an amazing garment seamstress—or sewist as the young gals call themselves. She has started her own small business designing graphic T-shirts and sewing garments for children. It is allowing her the privilege to be a work at home mom—WAHM—too!! So you could say that I inspired that!!
AQ: What are you designing or quilting now?
I have to put the binding on two baby quilts yet today!! Our daughter is due any day with our third grandchild!! Her husband and her decided with all three children should be surprises and would not find out the gender of the child until birth!! So this quilting grandma has made a boy quilt and a girl quilt for each pregnancy—so that all I have to do is put a label on it and bring it to the hospital right away. Doesn’t every baby need to come home from the hospital wrapped in love!!
Last year I was inspired to try my hand at pattern design. My pattern company is called Lizard Creek Quilting. I have been working with Island Batik from Carlsbad, California. Designing quilt patterns with their twice yearly new fabric releases.
Along with that I have been designing, making and writing patterns for trade samples with AccuQuilt. Or any type of freelance designing job they may have for me. Last year I designed all 72 blocks for the new GO! Qube Companion Set-Angles!! That was super fun!! Now to see them in print and on the packaging—well sometimes I just have to step back, pinch myself and see if it is real!!
For the first 20 years of my married life I was a super involved stay at home mom—my kids and husband were the most important job I had. Once we became empty nesters—I found out I still had a lot of life left to live—and have been filling it up with design opportunities that I didn’t take the time to pursue when I was busy being a mom! My life is busy and very blessed and I am grateful to the Lord every day for the opportunities that quilting has brought into my life!!
Congratulations, again, to Terri Vanden Bosch on designing the 2017 Runner-up Quilt Block in the AccuQuilt Quilt Block Contest. Her enthusiasm for quilting is incredibly inspiring!