Every year Deanna, our magazine designer extraordinaire over at To The Letter Type and Design in Marion, looks through all of the pictures that we send her and she comes up with an amazing cover for the Sew Iowa magazine. However, this year’s cover crop wasn’t initially up to her expectations. You see, when we were photographing what we thought would be the cover shot, we forgot two important rules in magazine cover design: leave header room for the title and make sure the background behind where the title will be isn’t too busy. That meant that all of our outdoor location shots had to be scrapped and thus we had to go back to the drawing board.
Jackee Austerman, who did the photography for this year’s Sew Iowa magazine, kindly arranged to have us gather up all the quilts and projects so we could try again indoors this time. This time we got Deanna on the phone and while we were arranging the shot, I kept sending texting her pictures so she could see the layout. Once we got the Windmills and Roadmaps quilt on to the rocking chair and set the round table next to it, Deanna suggested we find something tall to put behind the table. Jackee, Leland, and I started literally going from store to store in our building looking for something: we picked up a coat stand, some pussy willows from the Blooming Acres, and a blooming tree (plastic, but who can tell?). The tree made it to the cut.
Next we worked on how the quilts were arranged on the table. Deanna looked at our first arrangement and commented that the quilts looked too white. Leland refolded them so the top two quilts were showing off the Sew Iowa panel and the bottom quilt was displaying the large flying geese in the RAGBRAI Migration quilt. Nailed it!
Our last bit of arranging involved the quilts in the boxes. Deanna suggested that we turn the box sideways to the picture so the slats would give the photo depth. Jackee rolled up the remaining quilts and turned them so they pointed in toward the chair. We then draped the table runner over the side, added the pillow and and placed the backpack. I swear I could hear angels signing in the background so I knew this had to be the shot. Or perhaps it was the next door store owner turning up the radio because we were making such a racket. I don’t care what anyone else says; I heard angels.
Once we got the pictures to Deanna, she came up with the four cover shots that you see associated with this blog post. Note the large amount of header space above each picture this time. The background is plain so the Sew Iowa title really pops off of the page. One of our choices had the On the Go Tote featured prominently in the picture; we liked this cover but didn’t really feel like it showed off all of the other quilts or the signature Sew Iowa panel really well.
Now we were down to three covers. I really liked the teal background but felt you could tell it was photo shopped into the picture. That left us with the long shot and the close up shot of all the projects. We ultimately rejected the close up shot because it cropped out most of the large quilt on the rocking chair and the backpack was missing.
Almost there. After looking over the long shot, Jill made the comment that we should remove the Facebook icon (after all, every business has a Facebook page!) and replace it with graphics that connected the cover to the magazine. Deanna came up with the map markers that appear in the final version of the cover and our search was over. The very last thing added to this year’s Sew Iowa magazine was the cover!
Look for the Sew Iowa magazine at your local quilt shop. They should be arriving around May 10th.
We hope you enjoy this year’s Sew Iowa magazine and our cover story!