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Karlee Porter of Honest Fabric

Interviewed by Elizabeth Townsend Gard

Date December 2018

Karlee is an award winning quilter, a teacher, an innovator, and now she has a new business, Honest Fabric, where she is printing custom print tops.

Here is her description of herself:

"I have been quilting since about 2009, and quilting professionally since 2014. Over the course of my career, I have been very fortunate to be able to be a creative in the quilting industry full-time. I come from a very grass-roots, self-reliant, do-it-yourself type of background. As number seven out of eight children, I was raised from a young age that if there was something I wanted in life, it was up to me to make it happen. No one was going to make my aspirations come true (creatively AND financially).

As I built my own freelance Graphic Design business, I self-published my own books, patterns, and videos. I pride myself on always running my business with a spirit of self-reliance. Self-publishing my computerized quilting designs gave me the financial footing to focus on finishing my graphic design degree and learning the skills I would need to write books and other publications. Self-publishing my book Graffiti Quilting is what funded the purchase of my longarm quilting machine. Quilting for hire allowed me the freedom and confidence to become a professional free-motion quilting teacher. Traveling to teach quilting classes gave me the credibility to offer online quilting classes that I knew people could love, and trust.

Now that a few years have passed, and I have recognized how fortunate I am to actually earn a living as a creative professional, Honest Fabric is my effort in now raising the tide for the designers of the quilting industry as a whole. Through my journey in the industry, I have on more than one occasion been offered professional relationships that, while they sounded awesome in the elevator pitch, were not financially viable options to sustain a creative career. The promise of free stuff, free exposure, and obscure “future paying opportunities” wouldn’t really allow me to allocate my time wisely enough to support my family."



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Quilting Coloring book

Graffiti quilting vol 1 an 2

Digital Designs

Online courses including Hand Letter Quilting (expensive!) (You must have a FB account)

Passion to Professional Pro class

Sale of finished products (like Duvet covers)

Graffiti Quilting Rap song

Sentimental Snuggles

Disparity Quilts (won first place at Houston 2017) 

(and a blog post about the process) (a wholecloth)

Russian Mosque

Jenny's Graffiti Quilt


Sweet 16 sit-down

The Royal Huntress (third place at Houston 2018) in Alternative techniques

Debuting Honest Fabric at Houston

- relationships with designers

- equipment

Ira Glass on Storytelling on YouTube

Swarovski Flat Back Crystals

Irony:  current scam of printing designs


Club membership 

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