Machine Quilting with Style: Focal Point Re-Imagined + A Secret Revealed

Focal Point was such a fun design to both piece and quilt! I made it specifically for my book Machine Quilting with Style as part of my quest to go more modern with my designs. I remember attending a lecture by Heather Grant at the very first QuiltCon in 2013. She gave us several great tips on how to go more modern. Two of my favorites used in this quilt are asymmetry and cropping your design. Later once I got to know Jacquie Gering, she reminded me to make sure my modern quilts always had a “focal point.”


Christa with Focal Point at QuiltCon 2016. Quilt Measures 45″ x 45″.

I was thrilled to be able to share Focal Point at QuiltCon earlier this year and of course, I had to take the obligatory “here’s the quilt from my book pic!”

More Neutrals

I used Amy Ellis’ fabric to make the original version of the quilt. Her debut line was called Modern Neutrals which I thought was so appropriate for the quilt. When her next line, Chic Neutrals came out around the same time as the book I thought it would be fun to recolor it using those fabrics. (She’s since released a third line which I think would be just as fab!)

Focal Point - Chic Neutrals no lines

Focal Point recolored in EQ7 with Chic Neutrals by Amy Ellis for Moda

For another color idea, I thought I’d take you behind the scenes a bit. Many times when I’m designing, I’ll go through tons of different color iterations until I find the one that’s just right. Focal point actually started out in this icy blue colorway, before I applied Amy’s fabrics to it:


Focal point in classic blue and white.

I once heard it said that you know you have a good design on your hands when it can look good in any fabrics. Hopefully that’s how you all will feel when making the quilts from my books! 🙂

A Secret Revealed and a Giveaway!

It’s always fun to reveal secrets when sharing my books and patterns. Now I have another big announcement I can finally share. I’m an Aurifil thread designer! This week, Aurifil debuted my brand new line, The Piece and Quilt thread collection.


It’s a line of 24 threads in 50 weight cotton: 12 Neutrals and 12 Colors. These are my favorite threads that I use for every part of  quilt making: piecing, quilting and binding! In fact, the light gray that I used to quilt Focal Point is included in the neutrals collection.


To celebrate the one year birthday of my first book, and now my debut thread collection, you can win them before you can buy them!! To win a 12 pack of the neutrals, leave a comment here at my site, letting me know what your go-to thread colors are.

To win a 12 pack of the colors, head over to the Auribuzz blog and follow the intructions over there. Due to shipping limitations, this giveaway is open to all of my US friends. Be sure and ask for these by name at your favorite quilt shop – they’ll be arriving soon!

Last Week’s Winner

Last but not least, I’d like to congratulate Zina C. who won a copy of EQ Mini. I’m sure she’ll be able to put this software to good use!! Next week is quilt market so I won’t have another book post. But come back in 2 weeks for another winner and another re-imagined quilt!

Click here to purchase a signed copy of Machine Quilting with Style.
Click here to see all of the quilts from the book.

212 thoughts on “Machine Quilting with Style: Focal Point Re-Imagined + A Secret Revealed

  1. cassie carney says:

    My go to colors are ivory and a soft gray. I’m just starting so I’m not as adventurous with my thread choices yet. Thanks !

  2. Dorie E. says:

    I really love Aurifil. I enter as many giveaways as I can, and search for sales on Aurifil as often as I can. Rebuilding a thread stash has been quite the adventure. I’m not sure I’ll ever call them by number, I feel it’s excluding folks to call them numbers. My go to colors are the neutrals, though I’ve had to change my mindset in machine appliquĂ© to finish my Lori Holt items! That’s been a challenge to match things up!

  3. Wendy Steele says:

    My go to colours are black and white. I like using a contrast colour for the quilting, to pop the colours in the quilt.

  4. Lisa Marie says:

    For piecing I usually use a pale grey thread. For quilting, it depends on the quilt colors, but my favorite is a variegated lime green which goes with a surprising number of quilts.

  5. Lindawithani (Linda Behret) says:

    Hi, Christa! I use a lot of Aurifil thread for piecing my quits, and find that white and off-white are my go-to colors, although I use a lot of the neutrals.

  6. Mara says:

    I love Aurifil, just wrote a blog post about my favorites! My top neutral is 2600, and now I’m playing with the new 6000 colors, sea biscuit, moonrise and jedi

  7. Cindy Hanrahan says:

    I don’t have a “go to color”, I just use whatever will either blend or contrast, depending on what I want to do. I have not used Auriful threads before, but they are on my list for my next quilt. Thanks for the chance to get to know them!

  8. Cy Swendsen says:

    Love the Aurifil threads! I, too, use the cream or grey for most of my piecing. Thanks for the chance to win this wonderful thread pack.

  9. 3 no 7 says:

    I’m just starting along my quilting journey, so I like to match my thread to my fabric so that if I’m not “perfect” the “design elements” of the quilting won’t be as dominant. HA HA HA

  10. michele says:

    My favorite thing about machine quilting is that I can sit to do it! I especially like it at retreats because I can hang with the girls and still get work done. The longarm is nice but hard on my back.

  11. Carol Kuse says:

    My go-to color on the machine to piece is light beige. I have been looking for Aurifil threads since reading about them on your and their blogs. I am anxious to try them. Especially since I am starting to EPP which is all by hand. Thank you for the chance to win some, and love your blog.

  12. Andrea Wellman says:

    Go to thread is always neutral – I like 2600 (Dove gray) or 2310 Light Beige. Really enjoy your Blog. Thanks for sharing!

  13. Linda Webster says:

    I use mostly greys, dark, medium or light, depending on the fabric. If the fabric is very light I use an off-white thread.

  14. Dixie M says:

    My go to colors are beige, white, grey & black – you have all bases covered & I would love to win.. Aurifil threads are not available in my area. Many thanks for the opportunity to win.

  15. sgrancio says:

    Love Aurifil threads, they are all I am buying now. Light grey is my favorite oiecing color for lighter fabrics, a medium grey for darker ones.

  16. Chris K. says:

    Like everyone else, I like a light gray. I have an Aurifil variegated that I love, but it’s hard to figure out where to use it.

  17. LINDA says:

    HI CHRISTA, love the colors #2260+2460, but 2024 bright white, is my go to color for my baby charity quilts! Thank You so much for Your Inspiration! Great Giveaway!

  18. Georgette K says:

    I don’t have a great variety of Aurifil threads but I do use Aurifil 50wt in light gray, white and light cream. Would love to win this collection of threads.

  19. Cindy Schultz says:

    My go to neutral color is gray, color number 2615. I have just started using the Aurifil threads and I am loving them. I love that you share your expertise with us. You make it look so darn easy. Thanks

  20. Doris Melady says:

    My piecing colours are grey and taupe, but for FMQ I like to match with the colours in the quilt top. My sewing machine LOVES Aurifil thread, so any colour would be put to good use!

  21. Debra Ingle says:

    I usually use a white quilting thread, I just recently bought an Aurifil sampler type thread, I love it, but cannot afford to buy it all the time. Would love to win your give-a-way. Thanks for opportunity.

  22. Doris Melady says:

    For piecing I like to use taupe or grey. For quilting, often either of those will work but I look to the colours in the quilt top for the ultimate colour for blending!

  23. Diane Beavers says:

    Aurifil go to colors for me are: 1133 (gold) and 2350 (bronze)…..
    Checking out the greys too..can’t recall the numbers and I’ve peeled off the labels.
    Thank you . Have tons of fun in Houston.

  24. Ann D says:

    I sew with the white 2021 when using a white fabric but when working with other colors I use either the beige 2314 or the light gray 5007. Thanks for the chance to win.

  25. BJ Marla says:

    I am just learning about Aurifil threads and quilting and would love to win a set of your neutral color set. This brand of thread not available in stores where I live. Thanks, love your blog!

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 )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google 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