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About

Hi there. Thanks for visiting! My name is Shannon Brinkley. I am a teacher turned quilter and designer. I design modern quilting patterns using my super fun and quick raw-edge applique techniques that I've developed and written about in my book Scrappy Bits Applique. I've just released my new line of Applique Patterns called Menagerie. They feature various sweet and whimsical animal templates, all made using my "scrappy applique" techniques. Stay tuned, as I'll continually be adding new patterns from which to choose! Having my background in education, I adore teaching, and am lucky enough to get to teach my applique techniques all over the country (view available classes and upcoming events). I'd love for you to join us in class-- we have a ball! This fall I will be releasing my first fabric line! I can't wait to share it with you all soon! My goal for my company is to provide you all with the raw materials with which you can be completely creative. I never want to just give you a couple simple steps so that everyone can make the exact same item-- I want to facilitate creative exploration and expression. I always try to provide many options for every pattern and template. My templates can be paired with any number of backgrounds for a totally unique look. I am constantly updating my blog with new, free patterns that you can mix and match with my templates-- kind of a "choose your own quilting adventure!" I want my website to be a community of makers, encouraging and learning from each other. I love reading and responding to your comments and questions, so don't be shy to jump on in! I nest in the lovely Austin, Texas with my wonderful husband and son. I spend my time sewing, quilting, knitting, reading, writing, cooking, yoga-ing, teaching, and enjoying time with my favorite people.
  Why Bottle Tree? Bottle Tree is the name of my pattern company and studio. I have always been an admirer of trees. Okay, that's an understatement. I regularly have to stifle the physical urge to leap into bows I pass. I look like a lunatic all spring long as I can't help but gawk, grope, and greet every newly flowering tree I see. Friends tease me for stopping mid-conversation to exclaim in wonder and awe over some particularly lovely or unfamiliar tree. Tolkien's Ents are some of my very favorite characters in literature, and the tree house in Swiss Family Robinson made appearances in all of my childhood fantasies. My favorite tree lives on my college campus. It is a sprawling Live Oak, or rather, several sprawling Live Oaks (pictured above). I spent many an hour reading, writing, napping, drawing, and studying beneath it. Well, my now husband knows me well, and when proposing time came about, he found the loveliest means. He spent months collecting and painting wine bottles and jars, and elicited the help of friends to hang them from the branches and put flameless candles in the jars. Under the guise of apartment-hunting, he drove me there, knowing full-well I'd fall asleep after 15 minutes in the car (again, he knows me well). I was awoken by the campus chapel bells and led to this beautiful sight.  
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