I have to tell you how much fun it’s been share again on a regular basis. It feels like I’m keeping in touch with all of you – my quilting friends – and I sure have missed you! Keeping up with a habit is a lot easier than starting a new one, and it’s nice to be able to write a few sentences, or record a short video, without feeling like it has to be perfect, LOL!!
Today I want to remind you about Live! events that I’ve relaunched over in my Facebook group. The first one last week went well, and I’m excited to chat again on Tuesday, Nov 30 at 2 PM PST.
Our topic will be starting to prepare for the next Quilt Along that will happen in January. As a reminder for those who haven’t followed along before – the QAL itself is completely free. All you need to get is a copy of the quilt pattern. I held a poll over in my FB group asking which quilt everyone wanted to make next.
Do you remember nearly 2 years ago when I lamented in a previous blog post that I couldn’t find the *perfect* sewing table? Well I’m happy to announce that my dream finally came true!! Meet the “Christa Cabinet” – the perfect table that I designed in conjunction with Arrow Sewing.
Now before we get too far, I must tell you that as of this writing (November, 2021) the table won’t be available to purchase until May of 2022. But I can’t hold a secret that long so I wanted give you a sneak peek soon as I could!!
The Christa Cabinet Arrives May 2022
The Christa Cabinet has a drop in table that can fit most large sewing machines. I took some unofficial measurements with my measuring tape, but final ones will be out soon. Here’s the specs so far:
56″ wide plus an extra 16″ on the right with extended leaf
22″ deep + 18″ with back extension plus 14″ with front drawer extension.
Sewing machine cutout is 24″ x 13.” It fits my BERNINA 770 perfectly!
29″ high with locking casters
Adjustable manual table lift
Acrylic insert add-on is customizable to fit your machine
An optional pair of “quilt block” stoppers attach to the back or side to keep the quilt from falling off the edge of the table. These are completely my own invention!
I cannot tell you how excited I’ve been to test out this table/cabinet over the last few months. It works beautifully to hold up the weight of the quilt! The Christa Cabinet will be available through all Arrow Cabinet distributors, and if there’s enough interest, I’m considering drop-shipping it myself, which means I order for you and then Arrow sends it directly to your home. You just pay the MSRP (or less when it goes on sale) plus shipping.
Video Unboxing of the Christa Cabinet Sewing Table
When my cabinet arrived earlier this year, I had fun filming the unboxing. It came with white glove delivery service from FedEx – which I didn’t even know what a thing. All I thought when they were carrying it up my stairs was, “Pivot!! Pivot!!!”
Right now the estimated MSRP is coming in around $1500 which is a fantastic price for this level of table! After doing tons of research on all of the current tables out there, I really wanted to make this one affordable. Just to compare, the table I had been using prior to this which did NOT have all the upgrades cost me around $800 waaaaay back in 1995! The current high end tables on the market now go for about $3-$6k. [Insert eyes popping out of head emoji here!!] That’s way out of my price range and I figured it was way out of most quilters’ reach, too. After all – wouldn’t you rather spend that kind of money on the machine itself??
So leave me a comment if you think you may be interested in getting this cabinet. As it gets closer to launch date I’ll share more details. I can’t wait!!
Well it feels great to be back in the saddle again – quilting, blogging, and creating more fun video content. I just did a soft launch of my Christa Quilts Live! series in my Facebook Group. I uploaded the replay to my YouTube channel so you can click HERE or the image below to watch.
Each Live chat will be about 30-45 minutes covering a different topic. For next week’s chat (on Tuesday, November, 30) we will be discussing more details about my upcoming Blooming Wallflowers Quilt Along that starts in January.
Whenever I release a new line of fabric, I LOVE to see what it will look like made up into one of my previous quilt patterns. Depending on my free time, sometimes I’ll remake the quilt. But usually if time is tight, I’ll get just as much satisfaction recoloring it in EQ8 (Electric Quilt design software.)
I enjoyed recoloring Optical Illusion Using my Black, White and Bright fabric line. This line can be used all together of course (just like any of my collections). But there’s something magical when you pull just a few prints together in its own color story.
Be sure to scroll up and down to see these quilts wiggle. That’s the optical illusion caused by the placement of light, medium and dark fabrics in the correct proportion. The secret is to have high contrast in the squares (the lightest and darkest prints) with a medium/midtone color as the long skinny strips in between.
In the navy/black version above, I’ve chosen Crackle in blue, Electric Stripe in navy/black, and Links in Gray.
Check out the Optical Illusion Quilt Along to Make this Quilt!
A couple of fabric lines back, I made the first version in Black, White & Gray. I offered a free quilt along to go with it, too. All you need to purchase is a copy of the quilt pattern to follow along.
In the link above, I’ve also included additional tips and tricks for choosing fabric combinations and why they work. I also included some examples of what doesn’t work so you’ll know how to choose fabrics effectively, right off the bat! Below is the original version of the quilt shown on the pattern cover.
I’m curious – what color combination would you choose to make this quilt?
Electric Quilt Software (EQ8) Black Friday Sale!
P.S. My friends over at Electric Quilt just set up an affiliate program AND they are offering 25% off of any purchase through the end of the month when you use code 25 Days at checkout through my affiliate link here. I design ALL of my quilts in EQ8, and I’m also an ambassador for the company – so I can’t say enough nice things about them!!
At the very beginning of the pandemic I experimented with a fun feature in my Facebook Group. I hosted a series of weekly live chats on a number of fun quilty topics. It was well received, but then life got in the way and I had to take a pause. But now I’m happy to say that fires have been extinguished, and ducks are all in a row once again. So I’m excited to announce that Christa Quilts Live! is back.
These chats will be very informal and interactive. If you aren’t on Facebook, don’t fret! I’ll also be posting the replay to my ChristaQuilts YouTube channel later the same day, so you won’t miss a thing!
I’ll be chatting about all things fabric design for our very first topic, so please leave a comment with any questions you have about this topic. I’ll do my best to answer during the show. I hope to see you there!
Can you believe it’s been over 6 years since I wrote my very first quilting book? Back in 2015 I was so thrilled to launch my national career with what I considered my textbook for my quilting workshops, Machine Quilting with Style. It was soon followed by The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting in 2016 and Piece and Quilt with Precuts in 2017. Then I took a break from book writing to design fabric. Now I’m back to both and I couldn’t be more thrilled.
They each include step by step instructions on how to make a complete quilt, from start to finish – including machine quilting plans and diagrams. Writing these books has helped me become a better teacher. My hope is that by reading them, it will help you become a bette quilter!
Let me know in the comments if you have a favorite book, or a favorite project from one of the books. Each time I hear that it makes the machine quilting process easier, that’s like music to my ears!!
Whenever I release a new fabric collection, I always like to include a bonus free quilt pattern to go along with it. My freebie for my latest quilt collection is called “Stacked Bricks” and it’s made from 2 1/2″ precut strips of Black, White and Bright.
As you can see from the images above, I’ve designed 3 different versions of this quilt. You can make it with all dark strips plus a contrasting light background, all light strips with a contrasting dark background, or a scrappy look with light AND dark strips. The lap size measures 45″ x 62″ but you can easily make it larger simply by adding more strips. It’s a very versatile design!
I hope you enjoy making this quilt. If you’d like to share on social media, please use the hashtag #stackedbricksquilt so others can see your beautiful work!
The one good thing that has come out of pandemic/lockdown times is more companies embracing online events. I’m excited to be part of Benartex’ next Virtual Fabric Show on November 16, 2021. The fun begins at 10 am EST.
Here’s the schedule of events for that day. I’m excited to talk more about my new fabric line, Black White & Bright. But you’ll be inspired by all of the other fabric designers, too! We all have our own unique style and I love seeing what they create. I hope to see you there!!
Well hi all! It’s been a minute since I’ve posted regularly on my blog. Like so many of you, the past year or so has been a crazy time for sure. Throw in some deadlines, some life circumstances, and some general malaise, and that’s a great excuse to not share here as much as I usually do.
The good news is that I recently completed a big project (more about that later) and I finally have more time to get back to what I enjoy doing – making fun quilts and tutorials and sharing them with you all! I recently sat down and did a little thinking and strategic planning which basically boiled down to this: I need to create more and consume less. That’s the secret to a happy, quilty life I think!
This represents “What I did over my Pandemic Vacation…” More about this coming soon!!
More Online Video Content Coming Soon!
The other thing I realized is that I need to get over my fear of imperfection and create more fun, free YouTube videos for you all. It’s one thing to film them professionally in a studio and quite another to do them in my own studio with a production team of 1 – yours truly!
But I have a whole boatload of ideas on what I want to share with you all, so I’ll get started on that soon, whether or not they look professionally edited. As I say with quilting, finished is better than perfect, right?
In addition to more video content, stay tuned for more quilt patterns, more quilt alongs and loads of quilty inspiration. I’m still putting some finishing touches on some new products behind the scenes (can we say new sewing table anyone??). Plus a few more things that will be launched into production once supply chains and shipping is under control again! In the meantime, click the links below to browse some other fun places I like to share:
At a minimum, you’ll be hearing more from me here on the blog and I can point you to all the right places once new things are announced. I can’t wait – and please let me know if there’s something specific you’d like to learn or see more of. I’ll do my best to accommodate your request.
The second EQ news is that I’m featured over on their blog as one of their “Pearls of Wisdom” celebrating 30 years of EQ! I’ve used the software since before the beginning of my quilting career and I currently use EQ8 to design ALL of my quilt patterns. I couldn’t design without it!
Free Quilt Pattern!
Whenever I design a new fabric line, I include a free quilt pattern to go with it, designed in EQ8 of course! Here’s my free Pattern, Puzzle Box, recolored in my Black, White & Bright collection. This really plays up the black, white and grays in the group – don’t you think? It just takes 2 jellyrolls to make it with half light/half dark fabrics.