Hi, I'm Gina, an Army lawyer turned entrepreneur and surface pattern designer. Let me share my unconventional journey with you!
When I was in the Army working as an attorney, I was always contemplating my next career move. I was often asked, “well what would you do if you got out?” I would always say, “I don’t know, probably make baby quilts.” I didn’t know what I wanted to do, but I knew that it was something more creative than being an attorney.
In 2019, I decided to leave the Army to become a stay at home mom. While taking care of an infant and trying to figure out what I wanted to do next, the opportunity to teach a class at a local law school came to me—something I had only ever dreamed about. After a semester, I started thinking “this probably isn’t for me.” After two semesters, I decided to call it quits. I spent my entire early professional life having little to no input on the assignments I completed, where I lived, and how my day to day schedule went. Call it burn out, call it an epiphany, I don’t know what it was, but I knew I was done. It was time to start my own business, do something I really wanted to do, and build something I could be proud of.
Quilting was something that always helped me through my stressful position as a prosecutor. So when I was faced with enormous stress in early 2020 with an infant and a looming pandemic, I turned to quilting. I panic bought fabric and seriously thought, maybe I want to design fabric. I bought a Wacom tablet, tried drawing with some basic software, and immediately decided I was not good enough. I thought I would never be able to design fabric that I, or anyone else, would want to quilt with. I saved the file I created as “Flower Doodles” and moved on.
That’s when I started planning my dream online fabric shop. I decided I would stock all of the fabric I loved and create bundles to inspire others. I did all the business-y stuff that you do to start a business, and chose a few manufacturers with whom I could open wholesale accounts. Funny enough, when I opened one of those manufacturer’s online catalogs, the first collection I saw was “Flower Doodles.” Even funnier, all those doodles I made that I thought couldn’t possibly be good enough were awfully similar to those I saw in the collection. Seeing this brought back the idea that I wanted to design fabric, and gave me a little confidence that maybe it was something I could do in the future. I stored that bit of information away and got back to work preparing to launch my shop.
Fabric and Reason officially launched in January 2021 with a small collection of curated bundles and yardage. Since then, I’ve curated numerous bundles and quilt kits, tested patterns, made quilts, and helped many of you choose fabrics for your own projects!
In early 2022 I watched one of Bonnie Christine’s mini courses and learned how to make a very basic repeating pattern. I started seeing promotion for her Immersion course and decided to invest in the course. I wasn’t completely sold that I would complete the course then—I thought I was too busy, the timing wasn’t right, and I was still not good enough. I jumped in anyway. I learned the ins and outs of Adobe Illustrator and made some of the best art friends I could ever ask for. I’ve spent the last year and a half quietly exploring my signature style, honing my skills, and creating collections of designs that I am now ready to share with the world.
This business has changed and grown along with me. Most recently, I’ve launched a collection of paper goods and started The Fabric Files. Adding my personally designed fabrics is the next step I am taking to grow personally and professionally. The title of my first collection is Grow. It is a celebration of growth and transformation from Army lawyer to artist, and from a world of camouflage to one of color. It is a visual representation of the seed for the dream I planted years ago, that has now bloomed. You can find the complete collection on Spoonflower on September 7th.