Machine Quilting with Style: Color Crystals Re-Imagined

I’m so excited to share additional colorways of the third quilt from my first book, Machine Quilting with Style. Color Crystals is my modern version of a jelly roll quilt! In practically any bundle you buy, you can separate the solids or prints into distinctive colorways, and then use the leftover strips on the back.
Here’s the original quilt using a bundle of bright Kona Solids:
 Rain 54″ x 62″ by Christa Watson. Photography by Brent Kane.

Color Crystals, Re-imagined

Here’s an alternate colorway I designed in EQ7 using Amanda Herring’s Desert Bloom collection for Riley Blake. This pretty group is divided into three colorways of red, aqua, and gray with two whisper soft background prints that I alternated in the background strips. I repeated some of the fabrics to create cohesion in the design.
I was having so much fun playing around with these fabrics, that I decided to flip the positive/negative space in this version below. I placed the strips randomly in the background to create a  sense of movement and paired them with solid red “crystals” for a bolder, more dynamic design.
Now can you just imagine all the possibilities??

Quilter’s Dream Prize Sponsor

When I make my quilts, the batting is just as important as the fabrics and thread. Therefore I’m delighted to announce that one of my favorite batting companies, Quilter’s Dream

will be giving away two prizes to help promote their new Dream 80/20.

Each winner will get a White Dream 80/20 queen and a Natural Dream 80/20 queen. This time around, winners we be selected from the US due to shipping limitations.


To enter, just leave a comment letting me know your favorite way to use a jelly roll! For a bonus entry, you can share a picture of one of your jelly roll quilts in my Facebook Group: Quilt with Christa. We have a really fun community over there and everyone loves getting inspired by what everyone else is doing!

Last Week’s Winners

Congrats to Jane M. and Diane M. who each won a copy of my second book, The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting (co-authored with Angela Walters). I’ll pick this week’s winner next Thursday morning and post it with the next re-imagined quilt next Friday!

Christa Watson Books

Click here to see all of the quilts from Machine Quilting with Style.
Click here to see all of the quilts from The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting.

*Note: this post contains affiliate links – thanks for your support!!

100 thoughts on “Machine Quilting with Style: Color Crystals Re-Imagined

  1. Karen S says:

    I confess I haven’t used a jelly roll yet–but you’ve certainly tempted me with Color Crystals–and I’m still in love with the original solids.

  2. Jamie N says:

    I like using my HST ruler with jelly rolls, matching strips right sides together before cutting so I can quickly make HSTs. I love the color crystals pattern from your book, and I am excited to try that one with my next jelly roll!

  3. Janie M says:

    I use jelly rolls for log cabin quilts, and sashing. You can never go wrong with a 21/2 strip of fabric. Thank you for the giveaway.

  4. Jan B. says:

    I’ve been saving patterns and pictures of jelly roll quilts for a couple of years, there are several that I would like to make. I think my first will be a pattern that uses both a jelly roll and a pack of charm squares.

  5. Suzy says:

    USING a jelly roll is the best way to have a jelly roll… i have 2 jelly rolls here begging to be used.. they are on the soon to be used pile. A jelly roll makes the quilt top go together so much faster… getting you to the quilting part… which is quickly becoming my favorite part of the process as i practice practice practice and get better at it!!

  6. Anne Badgley says:

    My favorite jelly roll quilt is an off center log cabin quilt. If arranged with the right light and dark patterns, it can give a kaleidoscope effect. That was the first quilt I made in the 70s to be a special wedding gift for my best friend. It was from a library book and I have searched for the pattern for 40 years to make another one for me. I finally found the book at Goodwill! Woo Hoo! It will be the first quilt I have ever made for me as I always give them as gifts. I will do it in a cool color palette, and precuts will make it so much faster!

  7. Kris LeBlanc says:

    My favorite way to use a jelly roll? To add colorful decor to my sewing room! Is there any other use for them? LOL … Seriously, I HAVE used a few in quick quilts and baby quilts, they are also great for bindings. I’ve also parted with a few for raffle gifts and bday gifts for quilting buddies. Thanks for the inspiration and the chance to win Quilter’s Dream, my fav batting for many years!

  8. Jean K says:

    I dearly love your Crystals combinations and plan to make several for foster teens in the near future. Thanks so much for your inspiration

  9. kathy pfaltzgraff says:

    Wow, I like what you did with your crystals design, especially where the red was the solid part. Jelly rolls, well, I take out the colors I want for something else, I have also used it in a full sized bed bargello quilt, so actually it was just a starter and I found matching fabrics to cut up more strips, and so on. Kathy in Colo

  10. Kelsey says:

    I’ve never actually used a jelly roll. My favorite part of quilting is picking out my own fabric combinations but I do love strip-piecing. My favorite fabric medium to create quilts is show ribbons.

  11. Celeste Delostrinos says:

    Mostly, I collect jelly rolls to give as thank you gifts to retreat organizers, birthday presents to quilter friends, and for brown bag exchanges. There’s a special collection of jelly rolls in blues and greens that I’m hoarding to make a king size quilt for my mother.

  12. Patti A. says:

    Well I have a true love for jelly rolls and have just seen two great ideas on this blog to try and use them. We have a guild and others who have tried many different ways, ideas everywhere. Thanks for the chance. to win

  13. Carol says:

    I love precuts and jelly rolls are especially pretty since you can see all the colors from the side. This summer I used left-over jelly rolls to make two quilts following instructions you had online. I really liked spray basting and using your idea for machine quilting turned out well. I’ve also used jelly rolls to make borders are t-shirt blocks as I am constructing the quilt. I like the large variety of patterns you get in a jelly roll.

  14. Mona Reilly says:

    Right now I am working on a Courthouse Log Cabin using Christmas fabric. I would love to win a quilt batt to use in it when finished. Thanks.

    • JUDIE HARRON says:

      Christa, you have opened my mind to try playing along with your Color Crystals design to make my next jelly roll quilt. I have 40 “odd” jelly roll strips that I can play with to balance with solid strips for a more modern design. This will be a new adventure for me beside just sewing the ordinary jelly roll quilts. Wish me luck!

  15. Beverly says:

    I haven’t used a jelly roll yet but would use it for a log cabin quilt. It would save so much time instead of cutting the strips myself.

  16. Michelle M says:

    I’ve made one jelly roll quilt, simple patchwork, and I loved it! I also cut jelly rolls into squares to use for epp. I’d love to try this batting!

  17. Diane M says:

    I’m still so excited to have won your last giveaway. Thank you again — I’m loving the book! I’ve made a few jelly roll race quilts and most recently, used one to make a disappearing nine patch quilt.

  18. Wendy says:

    I recently used jelly roll strips for making fractured log cabin blocks. They come in handy for use with thangles paper in small sizes.
    Wendy in NH

  19. Heather says:

    My 1st jelly roll is being cut up into squares, I hope to be more creative for the unused jelly roll. Thanks for such a generous giveaway!

  20. LJ says:

    I’m love seeing your remakes. Generally, I buy jelly rolls for a particular project or quilt to save time in the cutting. I just bought 2 rolls to use for making a ‘tuffet’ – it’s a paper piecing process. It’s for a Christmas gift but I like doing things ahead of time. 🙂

  21. Cathy Wilson says:

    I’ve only been quilting for 2 years so I haven’t made a jelly roll quilt yet but I’ve accumulated a lot of 2 1/2 inch strips! Just haven’t decided which pattern to use yet.

  22. Rose P says:

    Jelly roll strips are great for pillows, pot holders and bags. I once bought a roll to make a baby quilt but the strips were so crooked, I had to chop them up to use in smaller projects. Precut strips take away the jitters of cutting into lovely fabric.

  23. Kathy E. says:

    My favorite jelly roll quilt pattern is the one by 3 Dudes. I made a small quilt for our guest room with a batik jelly roll and it turned out gorgeous!

  24. lilquilter says:

    My favorite way to use a jelly roll these days is just to admire it! I have way too many UFOs after years of quilting so I try not to come up with new projects or to keep buying more fabric than I could use in several lifetimes. (Ha!) I only have a couple of very colorful jelly rolls that I couldn’t resist buying, and they are sitting on a shelf in my sewing room where I can enjoy looking at them. However, I have both of Christa’s books and am inspired to finish some UFOs using some of the quilting techniques and designs in the books. After that, I plan to use one of my jelly rolls to make the quilt from Christa’s Simple Strips Quilt-Along. Thank you, Christa, for helping us become better machine quilters!

    • lilquilter says:

      P. S. Quilters Dream is my favorite batting brand but I’ve never tried the 80/20 blend. Hard to find near me since so many local quilt shops have closed. :-(. So I hope I’m one of the lucky winners!

  25. Cindy says:

    The first jelly roll I purchased, I just made a small jelly roll race quilt. Since then, I try to find something different each time. Love the convenience.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s