MQX 2020 Quilt Registration Opens Friday, November 1

Are you planning to attend MQX quilt festival? It takes place April 14-18, 2020 in Manchester, New Hampshire. This will be my second time returning to the show and I can’t wait!

MQX Quilt Show

What I’m teaching

I’ll be teaching my most popular machine quilting workshops and lecture!
Here’s my complete schedule:

148-20 Free Motion Favorites
Wednesday, April 15, 2020
1:00 PM to 6:00 PM
228-20 How do I Quilt it?
Tips for Machine Quilting Success
Thursday, April 16, 2020
9:00 AM to 11:00 AM
244-20 Walking Foot Wonders
Thursday, April 16, 2020
1:00 PM to 6:00 PM Eastern Time

free-motion-quilting

Registration Opens at 9AM Pacific/Noon Eastern Time

Many of the classes sell out quickly, so be sure to bookmark the MQX website, create an account, and head there first thing on Friday to sign up. I’d love to see you there!

Click here for my complete list of classes, descriptions, and supply lists.

Walking Foot Quilting

Come See Me at Fall Quilt Market in Houston, Texas Oct 25-28, 2019

It’s that time of year again when the quilting industry gears up for its semi-annual trade show for quilt shop owners, designers, and pretty much who’s who in the quilting industry. This year’s fall show takes place in Houston, Texas, October 25-28.

Quilt Market Fall 2019

New FAbric coming in January!

I’ll be presenting my next quilt fabric collection (my 5th line!!) called Gridwork from Benartex and I can’t wait! It will ship to stores next January, so be on the lookout for more details soon.

Gridwork by Christa Watson

MY QUILT MARKET SCHEDULE

Things kick off on Friday, October 25 with the Quilt Market schoolhouse: a full day of short educational presentations from designers, industry professionals, and quilting companies. They’ll be sharing sneak peeks of their latest and greatest.

Everyone who comes to my schoolhouse session (1:20-1:50 PM Room #370E) will receive a free swatch pack of my new fabric plus brand new quilt patterns!

Fall 2019 Quilt Market - Gridwork by Christa Watson

The show floor will be open Saturday through Monday, October 26-28 starting at 9:30 each day. I will be in my booth #2234 in the Benartex area most of the time. This the perfect time for quilt shop owners and other prospective buyers and industry partners to stop by for an informal meet’n greet.

It’s a great opportunity to touch and feel the new fabric, see my latest patterns and quilts “in the cloth,” and chat with me about scheduling future events. No matter how hi-tech we get, nothing beats in person, face-to-face communication!

Benartex Designer Showcase 2019

On Saturday and Sunday, Benartex will present their “Designer Showcase” – a chance to get up close and personal with all of the Benartex fabric designers who will be at the show. It’s another chance to get more freebies, rest your feet, and be inspired by all of the new fabric and patterns that will be released this season.

Threads of Success

On Sunday, I’m pleased to be a presenter at the Inaugural “Threads of Success” event that will take place concurrently with Quilt Market. This is an event geared at those who want to break into the business of quilting.

The hope is that it’s successful enough to become an annual event each year. My topic I’ll be speaking about is titled, “Make it easy for them to say Yes!” and I’ll be sharing tips and tricks on how to work with others in the quilting industry to get what you want.

Last Spring Quilt Market – Geo Pop Booth

Spring Market 2019 Geo Pop

Above is a pic of me in my booth earlier this year at Spring quilt market when I introduced Geo Pop. Be on the lookout for more fun and colorful pics next week! Be sure to come say hi if you are planning to attend. If not – you can catch the action by following me on instagram @christaquilts.

It will be a busy time for sure, but I can’t wait!!

Gridwork Fabric by Christa Watson

Teaching Update: New York Next Month, New Hampshire Next Year

I like to update you all occasionally on where I’ll be heading to teach because I often get asked if I’ll be in a certain area of the country. So the interesting thing is that I’ve never been to New York state in my life and now I’m going there twice in a row! Tomorrow I’m headed out to a visit the Snow Country quilt guild  in Remsen and I can’t wait.

If You Can Quilt It Here – You Can Quilt It Anywhere!

Then next month I’ll be doing a super fun event for the Aurora Sewing Center near Buffalo, NY October 2-5.

Aurora Sewing Center

I’m doing a new kind of event for them which I’m really excited about. I’ll be one of their “sewlebrities” for their monthly sewing club in October. I will be giving a 3 hour presentation on machine quilting along with a meet n greet, demo, and a chance for club members to ask all their burning machine quilting questions.

This presentation will be offered multiple times at both locations of their shop so that all club  members will be able to attend. Then I’ll follow that up with a full-day machine quilting workshop.

If you’ll be in the area during this time, I’d love to see you!

Returning to MQX

I’m thrilled to be returning to MQX quilt show April 15-18, 2020 in Manchester, New Hampshire. MQX has a special place in my heart because it was where I earned  my first national quilt show ribbon back in 2013. Registration opens later this year, so save the date and I’ll be sure to make an announcement once registration goes live!

MQX Quilt Show

Click here to keep up with my current schedule of events. I’d love to see you in person!!

My Finished Terrace Dresses (and Matching Shoes)

I’m finally recovered from Quilt Market last week, so I can share with you how my dresses turned out using my new Geo Pop fabric line. “3-D” sewing is new to me, so this was a fun adventure! I began by pairing up my new fabric samples with some of my favorite Fluevogs

Geo Pop Fabric Fluevog Shoes

Which do you think came first – the fabric or the shoes??

Then I made a “muslin” – a practice version (using my Modern Marks fabric) without all the finishing touches so I could test for fit. I used Liesl & Co’s Terrace Dress pattern because it looked easy enough for beginners, and it really was!!

Making a dress from Modern Marks

I used Crossmarks in pink for my “practice” dress before making the real thing.

I don’t have many in-progress pics because I was a hot mess while sewing on a deadline. But I tried tissue fitting and making an FBA (full-bust adjustment) before I finally settled on making a version of the dress according to the size I thought I was on the pattern, without any adjustments. This actually seemed to give me the best result.

Black Yellow Terrace DresssCut pattern pieces all laid out on my design wall – it’s not just for quilts!!

I made a total of 4 of this dress using each color of the “Mosaic Dots” print from my new Geo Pop fabric line from Benartex (shipping in August). I put pockets in the first version which was awesome! But they took a lot of extra time, so I skipped that step in the other 3 versions since I was in a hurry. I also changed up the hem length a couple of times, just to see which I liked better (slightly longer for sure!) I missed getting a good pic of me in the yellow version, but here are the other 3 versions below.

A purple dress with matching purple shoes!!

Terrace Dress in Geo Pop Fabric

I admit it – sometimes my fabric color palette is influenced by my shoe collection!!

Geo Pop Terrace Dress

You can’t go wrong with classic black and white!!
It was fun to try out different sash/belt configurations.

I really enjoyed making these dresses, and am excited to make more clothing. I got a great tip from a seamstress I met when I wondered why the top had a few small wrinkles between the bust dart and shoulder area. She said  I should look for patterns with set in sleeves rather than a cap sleeve – that it would fit my shape better. I’ll be sure to look for that next time!!

If I’ve piqued your curiosity about my new booth and fabrics, don’t worry. I’ll share more about the items in my booth at the of the week, so stay tuned!!

Come See Me at Spring Quilt Market 2019 in Kansas City!

This week I head off to Kansas City, Missouri for Spring 2019 international quilt market – the quilting industry trade show. I’ll have new fabric, quilts and patterns to share plus loads of inspiration! Catch live daily updates from me on instagram @christaquilts – and if you’ll be at the show, please be sure to come say hi during my in-person events below:

Geo Pop by Christa Watson

Ask your local quilt shop to order Geo Pop from their Benartex sales rep.
Click here to view Geo Pop fabric swatches.

Schedule of Events

  • Thursday 1:55-2:25 PM Schoolhouse Session, Room 2209
  • Friday 8-9 AM Business Seminar – click here to register
  • Friday-Sunday during show hours –  meet and greet in booth #2111

  • Friday 2:30 PM Designer Showcase Booth 2111 – free goody bags for attendees
  • Saturday 11 AM Designer Showcase Booth 211 – free goody bags for attendees

Benartex Designer ShowcaseJoin me and the other Benatex designers shown above to learn more about our new collections, grab a goody bag and take pics of our booths – it will be super fun!!

Quilt Market Newsletter Feature

Speaking of quilt market, I was pleased to be featured in the April Edition of eInsider – News and Trends from Quilt Market. Click here to read my interview.

Geo Pop by Christa Watson

Click here to preorder Geo Pop FQ Bundles, shipping Aug/Sept 2019.

WHERE TO BUY Geo Pop – SHIPPING IN AUG/SEPT

QUILT SHOP OWNERS:

Click here to view the entire line from Benartex. You can order directly online from Benartex, from your independent sales rep, or from most major distributors:

FANS AND FRIENDS:

Please ask your favorite local quilt shop to carry it. If you don’t have one nearby,
click here to preorder FQ bundles for a limited time (one per person, please).

Geo Pop Fabric

Geo Pop includes 25 skus of saturated geometrics with black and gray neutrals.

ChristaQuilts Patterns are Now Available on Etsy

I’ve finally jumped on the Etsy bandwagon!! I set up an account many years ago before we had The Precut Store but didn’t do much with it. I’ve also purchased a few items here and there. But I finally made the push to get my quilt patterns (PDF versions) on the site so you could access them quickly and easily!

Click here to visit my Etsy store.

Christa Quilts Patterns

Click here to visit my Etsy store.

Although I still have my print patterns available for sale at shop.ChristaQuilts.com, AND the PDF versions are still available to purchase through Craftsy (Bluprint), with the recent changes they’ve made, I can’t add any new ones. (Instructors were supposed to be able to continue adding new patterns but I haven’t figured out how to do that…) Since I have a bunch of new patterns coming out this spring, I wanted to make sure I didn’t miss out on getting my patterns in the hands of those who needed them.

So will you do me a favor? If you’ve had your eye on a pattern or two of mine, will you go ahead and place your order and leave some feedback? That will allow me to make sure everything is running smoothly and that I can grow my presence on the site.

My Etsy shop name is ChristaQuilts and the url is:
https://www.etsy.com/shop/ChristaQuilts

As a recap, here are some beauty shots of a few of my favorites:

Positive Direction

Positive Direction quilt pattern by Christa Quilts

Sparkling Stars

Sparkling Stars Quilt by Christa Watson

Blooming Wallflowers

Blooming Wallflowers Modern Marks

Stepping Stones

Stepping Stones by Christa Watson

Surplus Strips

Surplus Strips quilts made from Fandangle by Christa Watson

Modern Logs

Modern Logs by Christa Watson

Improv Squares

Improv Squares Quilt Pattern using Modern Marks Fabric

Click here to purchase my PDF patterns (instant digital download) on Etsy.

Just a reminder – to access your PDF pattern once you’ve purchased it, be sure to save it to your computer and then open it up with your favorite PDF reader. Then be sure and keep me posted during your progress. My favorite thing is to see what you make and the fun fabrics you choose!

More patterns are coming soon – so stay tuned!!

Sneak Peek of My Appearance on the Quilt Show with Alex Anderson and Ricky Tims!

On a hot August day last summer, I was invited to be a guest on The Quilt Show with Alex Anderson and Ricky Tims. It was a nerve-wracking but wonderful experience, and now I’m excited to announce that my episode will be airing on April 21! The folks behind the scenes over at the Quilt Show were amazing, and they’ve prepared this fun trailer to get you excited about the show:

The Quilt Show Trailer

Click here to view a sneak peek of my episode #2409 of The Quilt Show.

Members of The Quilt Show will be able to catch this hour long episode along with all of the new shows this season as they are released. If you aren’t yet a member, I’ll be able to share a special link the week after it airs so you can watch it for FREE!! So stay tuned 🙂

Come See Me at QuiltCon 2019 in Nashville! (And a fun personal update)

I can’t believe it’s already time to get packed and ready for QuiltCon which is happening next week! It’s been a whirlwind of a year for our family so far – moving into a new home and getting ready for our younger son leave for his mission to China this week. The older one will be moving back home for awhile to work for us, and we are sooo glad we got the bigger house with an extra room! During all the chaos, we were even able to sneak in a last minute Disney vacation over the weekend. It was a great way to celebrate all the changes happening this year!

Watsons at Disney 2019

Disneyland is truly our happy place!! Although it was a chilly weekend, I kept nice and toasty warm with my MQG Hoodie I got at last year’s QuiltCon!

But now, it’s time to transition back into quilting mode big time!! And I’m so excited to do that with my first teaching event of the year! If you are planning on attending QuiltCon but didn’t make it into my sold-out workshops, I have great news for you: there’s still room in my lecture, plus I’ll be doing several free events on the flow show all weekend long. So be sure to come up and say hi – I’d love to chat with you!

BERNINA demos at QuiltCon

Here’s my schedule of events:

Christa’s QuiltCon Schedule

  • Friday 1:00 PM Stage Demo – Free Motion Quilting with BERNINA
  • Friday 1:30 PM Meet ‘n Greet – Booth 712 Designs by Sarah J.
  • Friday 5:00 PM Stage Demo – Electric Quilt 8
  • Saturday 11:00 AM Stage Demo – Walking Foot Quilting with BERNINA
  • Saturday 11:30 AM Meet ‘n Greet – Booth 712 Designs by Sarah J.
  • Sunday 10:15 AM Lecture – Modern Machine Quilting

Click here to register for my lecture.

Christa EQ and QuiltCon

So far I have attended every QuiltCon since the event began in 2013. This will be my third time teaching there and it’s my favorite show of the year! I always get inspired when I go and I love learning more about the modern quilting aesthetic. Plus, it’s super fun to meet up with friends, many of which I’ve met because of my involvement with QuiltCon!

Christa and Sarah J

I’m excited to hang out in my pal Sarah J’s booth next week. She’ll have many of my fabrics, patterns and of course my books! Stop by to say hi and I’ll be happy to sign anything you like… (a book, a pattern, your arm, a blank check… just kidding!!)

QuiltCon 2019

Are you planning to attend? If so – I’ll see you there!!

Abstract Garden Blog Hop and Fabric Giveaways!

What a fun week this is going to be! I have blog posts going up later this week about QuiltCon  and the Blooming Wallflowers quilt along and I can’t wait. To top it off, Benartex is hosting a blog hop for Abstract Garden all week over on their blog at Sew in Love with Fabric. You’ll be able to see fabulous projects made by the amazing lineup of makers below. Plus, each one will be giving away a fat quarter bundle, so there’s tons of chances to win, whoo hoo!!

Abstract Garden by Christa Watson for Benartex Contempo Studio

Blog Hop Participants and Schedule

Click each of the links below to visit the blog and bookmark it for later in the week when they’ll be sharing. It’s going to be Sew. Much. Fun!!

Monday 
Benartex Blog – Intro & inspiration about my designs

Tuesday
Sherry Shish from Powered by Quilting
Lee Monroe from May Chappell

Wednesday
Annie Unrein from Patterns by Annie
Pam and Lynn from The Stitch TV Show

Thursday

Friday
Abstract Garden by Christa Watson for Benartex

My QuiltCon Entries for 2019 and a Plea for Kindness Online

I love this time of year. Not only for the holidays, but also to see what quilts everyone has entered for next year’s QuiltCon show. So far, I’ve been to every show since it began in 2013 and I’ve also had at least one quilt accepted for each show which is always fun to see. I just received word that one of three of my entries got in this year and I couldn’t be more thrilled.

Blooming Wallflowers Accepted

Blooming Wallflowers quilt

Click here to get the PDF pattern for Blooming Wallflowers
Click here to get the print pattern for Blooming Wallflowers
Kits available – while supplies last

It’s really special to me that this quilt was accepted, because I had originally made a slightly different version (shown below) for a magazine (using my first line, Modern Marks). I entered the first version into the show last year and it was rejected then. I know that the jury changes from year to year and the group of quilts to choose from is always different, so that just goes to show that it’s always worth trying again if you think you have a really great design.

In the updated version (seen above), I still used the same dark Navy from Modern Marks, but paired it with coordinates from Abstract Garden.

Earlier Version – Made from Modern Marks

star Shadow by Christa WatsonThis version was a “reject” for QuiltCon 2018

Out of the Box Declined

This quilt was such fun to make and I’ll for sure be entering it into other shows. One thing I’ve learned is that my commercial quilt designs I make for patterns and books tend to be a little more on the more “modern traditionalism” side of things which usually has a ton of entries, so I’m never disappointed when one of them doesn’t make the cut. I’ve actually designed a super-modern version of this quilt with much more negative space that I may try to make and enter for next year, so we’ll see what happens!

Out of the Box by Christa Watson for American Patchwork and Quilting using Fandangle fabric

This quilt was originally made for a magazine to showcase Fandangle Fat Quarters.
I plan to remake it in an upcoming fabric line and re-release the pattern, so stay tuned!

Beaded Lanterns Declined

This one didn’t surprise me at all because all though it’s a dynamic design, it’s still very traditional in the layout and setting. But I still love it since it was easy to pattern and teach. This is the first year that I didn’t have time to make a quilt specifically for the show, but I’m still glad I entered. It’s always fun to be part of the process!!

Beaded Lanterns Finished Quilt

Beaded Lanterns was made to showcase Fandangle precut strips.
Kits available while supplies last.
Get the free pattern here.

A Plea for Kindness

Before you leave comments online saying “I can’t believe so and so’s quilt didn’t get in” or “what were those jurors thinking, they are crazy!” or anything of that nature, please remember to be kind.

I know that emotions tend to run a little high when everyone gets their notices that their quilts weren’t accepted. However, I always remind myself, it’s just simple math. There were 1750 quilts entered this year, and the show usually only had room for 400. So that means that less than 1 in 4 will get in on average. In other words, 75% of the quilts entered will not make it into the show. But that doesn’t make them “rejects.”  I’m sure that if QuiltCon had the room, they’d take as many quilts as they could.

I enter a lot of national shows, most of which are much larger than QuiltCon in terms of numbers of quilts on display. However, they don’t get nearly the amount of entries as QuiltCon does and I never hear negative comments about quilts that don’t make it in. I think it’s because QuiltCon and the MQG have such a large internet presence and we all know how easy it is to make an off-handed comment online. My one request would be to keep things as positive as you can, even if you didn’t get in. I know that the folks working behind the scenes put in untold numbers of hours to make a great show and I’m so thankful for the hard work they do!

In fact, if you’d like to treat yourself to a really inspiring “virtual” quilt show online, be sure to check out the hashtag “quiltconreject” on instagram. It’s a visual feast for sure!

Other Quilt Show Venues

And if you are thinking about entering your quilt into a large national show, here’s a few more that I’d highly recommend:

Blooming Wallflowers made with Abstract Garden and Modern Marks

Now it’s time to add a hanging sleeve and label to this quilt so it’s ready to ship!