Meet a Quilter: Jonna Gjevre

Sol Invictus by Jonna Gjevre [Photo Credit S. Skumanich]
Sol Invictus by Jonna Gjevre [Photo S. Skumanich]
We’re launching a new DMMQG blog series, Meet a Quilter, which will allow us to share our favorite projects and get to know each other. We’d love to hear from any guild member who wants to be featured in this series, so check your email next week for a sign-up opportunity. Today, we’re checking in with Jonna Gjevre.

Jonna Gjevre
Jonna at DMMQG’s fabric printing retreat [Photo: E. Echols]
How did you become interested in modern quilting?

I’ve always been passionate about textiles–I grew up on a sheep farm, so you’ll often find me knitting–but I didn’t really start sewing or quilting until 2015. I’ve been lucky enough to take several modern quilting classes with Lynne Troup at Fabricate in Boulder, and she introduced me to Amy Wade, one of the co-founders of the Denver Metro Modern Quilt Guild. Participating in the guild has opened my eyes to so many different approaches to quilting.

Tell us about some of your favorite quilt projects.

I loved working on “Sol Invictus” [shown above]. It’s currently on display in the How New is Modern? exhibit at the Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum. It’s very textural, with hand quilting, rustic embroidery and bead work, and vibrant silk fabric.

I also enjoyed making one of Carolyn Friedlander’s Collection Quilts. This pattern was my first introduction to both hand quilting and needle-turn applique, and I discovered that I really appreciate the textures you get with those techniques.

Gjevre Collection Quilt Full
Collection Quilt by Jonna Gjevre
Gjevre Collection Detail
Collection Quilt Detail

Tell us about your favorite fabrics, tools, and techniques. (If you’d like to share any photos of your sewing room or your stash, we’d love to see them!)

I love texture, so I’m inspired by any fabric that showcases the tactile nature of quilting. I’m particularly drawn to Nani Iro double gauze, Essex Linen, and Robert Kaufman’s Manchester fabric.

I take a lot of inspiration from nature, so I mostly choose neutral colors–soft blues and gray and beige–but I also enjoy seeing a punchy accent color every now and then. I used Janet Clare fabrics and Essex Linen to make a quilt for Amy Wade’s Hurricane Harvey charity drive, and it really shows how I like to use color.

Quilt for Hurricane Charity
Quilt for Hurricane Charity

My favorite tool is the Singer Featherweight my husband bought me for Christmas. His aunt is a wonderful quilter, and she found it for him in a small town in Kansas and got it all fixed up. It’s perfect for me because I do all my quilting on the kitchen table, and it’s so easy to bring it out and sew for a little while, whenever I like.

I also love my Sew-EZ blocking board. It’s heat-proof, water-resistant, and nearly an inch thick, and it opens up to 33 X 51. You can press a lot of fabric on a surface like that!

As for favorite techniques, I’m still spreading my wings. I do love needle-turn applique, but there are so many other things I want to learn.

What’s next on your quilting horizon? What are some designs, styles or techniques you’d like to try?

In February, I’m taking Amy Friend’s “Improv Paper Piecing” class through the guild. I don’t know the first thing about improvisational quilting, and I’ve done paper piecing only once, so I’m excited to learn something new.

I’m also contributing to the DMMQG’s QuiltCon 2018 Charity Quilt. Our quilt is called “Enigma Variations” and it features modern reinventions of traditional quilt blocks. I’m working with some very accomplished and generous quilters, and our color palette is full of jammy, marmalade shades that are quite fun.

Quiltcon 2018 Charity 1
QuiltCon 2018 Charity Blocks

[Photos by Jonna Gjevre except where otherwise noted.]