Designer Spotlight | May Chappell

Designer Spotlight | May Chappell

Sep 1, 2016 By OLFA Creates

Lee has been creating all of her life; she’s from a family of quilters and learned everything from her mother, affectionately known as The Guru. She loves all things fabric—from zippy pouch to queen size quilt, and everything in between. With a love of color and bold graphic shapes, Lee enjoys designing patterns and teaching all types of classes, while sharing her adventures on her blog. She is a trained graphic designer which shows in her aesthetic. Her work has appeared in multiple publications, including Stitch, Quiltmaker & Modern Patchwork and she is a Craftsy instructor. She is an active member of the Triad Modern Quilt Guild. Lee lives in beautiful North Carolina with Mack the Chihuahua.


What is your favorite OLFA tool and why?

My rotary cutter!! I can’t live without it! I think back to how my Mom made her first quilt with templates and scissors and I cringe. The rotary cutter saves so much time and is so accurate.


What is your favorite OLFA rotary cutter & why?

I love the OLFA Quick Change Rotary Cutter. You can open just one side which makes it safer. And it’s sturdy! I have a lot of students that come to me that struggle with cutting and the first thing I look at is which rotary they're using. Sometimes cuts are inaccurate and wavy because the cutter is flimsy. This rotary is a requirement for my beginning quilters! Although I am patiently waiting for Olfa to make this cutter in cute Splash colors.


What important piece of advice would you offer someone on the brink of quilting?

Just do it! Jump in! Once you catch the bug, you’ll never look back. Find a good local quilt shop and sign up for a beginner's class and you’ll have a quilt in no time.


What is the dominant color in your stash?

Aquas and greens. Orange is my favorite color, but the greens and aquas dominate a full shelf.


Who taught you to sew or quilt?

My Mom, who I call The Guru. I actually named my business May Chappell after my great-grandmother because she taught my grandmother to sew and my grandmother taught my mother. Then my mother taught me. I liked the idea of a love of sewing passing through the generations. I always say that my Mom gave me life and then made it better by teaching me to sew.


From where (or whom) do you draw inspiration?

Everywhere! My bags are full of sketchbooks (and scraps and napkins) with quilty doodles. I tend to draw inspiration from old blocks and quilts and bring in a modern element.


Want to learn more about Lee and possibly read her blog? Find her here!



SPOTLIGHT PROJECT: Scallop Zipper Pouches






Designer Spotlight | May Chappell

Sep 1, 2016 By OLFA Creates