Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Grooving To Melody Miller's Vinyl Fabrics

Writer, painter and fabric designer Melody Miller is a hard-working renaissance woman with a heightened sense of style and a love of cool retro designs.

Her newest fabrics feature “Old School” vinyl records, a range of very colorful throwbacks to the era of 33RPMs and 45RPMs that are made of a 60-inch-wide lightweight cotton/linen blend.

Miller debuted the fabrics at her booth at the Spring 2012 International Quilt Market in Kansas City, Missouri, last May, which was where Owl & Drum co-owners Bianca Howell and Dani Weaver placed orders for two varieties of the distinctive fabrics.

The 12-inch vinyl-inspired fabrics are now at Owl & Drum at 2810 E. 15th St. in Tulsa.

The Kansas City event was the first time she had hosted quilt market booth, and she said it was a “fantastic experience” to meet customers in person, as well as other designers and vendors. She said having her husband, Greg, along for the event was “super fun . . . and he loved everyone he met.”

Her other fabrics include: Ruby Star Shining, which feature deep-orange electric typewriters on a blue background; Ruby Star Spring, which use dragonflies as the motif; and Ruby Star Rising, which focus on old viewfinder reels from the 1970s.

Miller has also designed a range of Gelaskins, which are coverings for smartphones, laptops, e-readers, iPads and gaming systems, based on the vinyl prints in her new spring fabric line.

There’s definitely no moss on this fashion rolling stone: Miller also has a new book coming out – it’s due in stores in late October on the Roost Books imprint.

“Ruby Star Wrapping: Creative Packaging to Reuse, Regive and Relove,” which she wrote with her friend Allison Tannery, is a testament  to fun, but frugal, wrapping ideas and minimizing unnecessary waste during the holidays and for birthday gifts.

The duo decided to organize the book based upon the different types of gifts being given – be it fragile, bulky, thin or flat – and created several packaging projects for readers  choose from.

Miller said the business-minded Tannery helped her hone the focus of her work had that they had talked for quite awhile about collaborating on a book.

“We always talked about writing a book together - she loves to write and I love to make stuff - so it seemed like a perfect combination,” she said on her website,

And then Miller had her literary epiphany prior to Christmas 2010.

“I had been thinking for several months about a gift wrap concept for a book, and then I saw the ‘Green Grocery Bag Challenge’ on (the popular website) Sew, Mama, Sew!,” she said.

“The idea is to wrap your holiday gifts in handmade, reusable grocery bags to cut down on the millions of tons of wrapping paper and plastic bag waste that end up in landfills every year.

“Suddenly, I was inspired! I could write an entire book about handmade reusable gift packaging. I thought grocery bags were a fantastic starting point, and I wanted to explore packaging options for gifts of all different shapes and sizes. 

“Allison found this statistic from the Sierra Club: if every American family wrapped just three gifts this year in something that could be reused, we would save enough paper to fill 45,000 football fields. That seemed like all the incentive we needed to start our book.”

And the book was very much a family affair: Miller’s husband, Greg, took the photographs for the book; while Tannery’s husband, Blake, undertook layout, design and art direction duties.

The photo shoot for the book was staged at their “dream location” – Elsie Larson's Red Velvet Shop, a “dreamy” old downtown building full of architectural details , vintage objects and huge windows in Springfield, Missouri.

“I'm so pleased with this book, and hope you will be, too,” Miller said. “This fall, at Quilt Market, I'll be devoting my booth to my new fall line for Kokka, as well as this book.”

For more information about Melody Miller’s fabrics, book, paintings and gelaskins, visit

For more details about Owl & Drum, which carries more than 100 fabrics made by several designers, crafts supplies and tools, plus numerous unique gifts, visit

The 2810 E. 15th St. store also sells many other items made by Tulsans, Oklahomans and artisans from Portland, Oregon, plus a variety of craft books.

Owl & Drum is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday, and from 12-4 p.m. Sundays. The store is closed on Mondays, but it's open every day online.

For more information, call Bianca at 918-742-1404, send an email to, or follow us on Facebook,, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.


  1. Beautiful prints and patterns used in the vinyl fabric. These fabrics can be used in making covers, gloves, coats etc.

  2. Yes, they are very versatile but yet so cool!