Squiggles Quilt Along Schedule, Supply List + Get Your Kit!

I’ve been a busy bee planning for our quilt along next year. It will kick off January 8, 2017 and we will be making the Squiggles quilt from Piece and Quilt with Precuts (book required). See below for the QAL schedule:

Squiggles by Christa Watson from Piece and Quilt with Precuts

Original Squiggles Quilt from the Book – 50″ x 63″

2018 Quilt Along Schedule

  • Week 1 – January 15: Gathering Fabrics and Cutting
  • Week 2 – January 22: Making the Blocks
  • Week 3 – January 29: Assembling the Quilt Top
  • Week 4 – February 5: Backing and Basting
  • Week 5 – February 12: Machine Quilting
  • Week 6 – February 19: Binding

Supply List

  • Two – 5″ charm packs of background solid or tonal fabric (or a total of 77 squares)
  • Four – 5″ charm packs of print fabric (or a total of 154 squares)
    • (Note – you can also substitute one 10″ square pack if needed, and cut to size)
  • 1/2 yard of fabric for binding
  • 3 1/4 yards of fabric for backing
  • 56″ x 70″ piece of batting (I recommend Hobbs batting)
  • Approx. 1200 yards (or one large spool) of fabric for quilting (I recommend Aurifil)
  • Sewing Machine with new needle and basic sewing supplies
  • Rotary cutting equipment (6″ acrylic ruler, mat, standard cutter with new blade)

Piece and Quilt Collection Aurifil Thread by Christa Watson

I’ll be using my Aurifil thread collection to piece and quilt my version of Squiggles!

Pre-Order Your Squiggles Quilt Kit With Black or White

The kit includes everything you need for the quilt top including fabrics + binding. By popular request, I’m offering it in two choices of backgrounds: either black or white. I’m making mine in black just to change things up, but I think it looks great in either choice!

Click here to preorder your squiggles quilt kit. On the item description, you’ll be given the option to select which background you’d prefer. These will ship Approximately Nov 3rd (after I return home from quilt market.)

Squiggles recolored in Modern Marks

I’m remaking my version using my Modern Marks collection with Black.

Squiggles from Piece and Quilt with Precuts

 

I’m also offering a kit with a white background.

Modern Marks Collection

Take a look at all the prints included in the Modern Marks precuts that are coming soon! It includes the 26 Modern Marks Prints, plus 5 Color Weave coordinates. (Shout-out to my hubby Jason for taking the digital images and arranging them into a pretty grid!!)

Modern Marks Fabric

26 Modern Marks and 5 Color Weave coordinates are included in the precuts that are coming soon!

Optional Backing Kits Available for a Limited Time

For a limited time, I’m also offering a kit of coordinating backing fabric to go with the quilt top. It will include a total of 3 1/4 yards of quirky triangles in Navy/blue.

Click here to preorder the Squiggles backing kit.

Modern Marks Quirky Triangles Navy Blue

Sharing is Caring

Be sure to join my Facebook group: Quilt with Christa. It’s a great community of fun folks like you who would love to see your progress during the quilt along and cheer you on! You’ll be able to share pics of your progress during the quilt along as well as anything else you are working on.

I can’t wait for the quilt along – it’s going to be fun!!

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Catching My Breath and Call for #QuiltsforVegas

With all the craziness of this week, I’ve barely had time to process what has happened here locally. I just returned from a long teaching trip, received a huge shipment of my fabric, and then awoke to the news on Monday morning of the tragedy that struck my home town here in Las Vegas. So it’s been quite an emotional week. It’s now Thursday and it’s taken me that long to catch my breath. I’ll be blogging about happy quilty things shortly, but for now I wanted to share this announcement on how you can help:

Quilts for Vegas

My local guild, Las Vegas MQG is collecting finished quilts and quilt tops to pass out to those affected by the shooting. They are still finalizing details of where to ship, but here’s the basic info, copied directly from their website:

Hello Quilters! The outpouring of love and support we have received is nothing short of incredible and we are overwhelmed with it.  We have been struggling to put together words for what has happened in Las Vegas and have decided to put together quilts!

There have been a ton of people reaching out asking how they can help so we have put together a quilt drive for #quiltsforvegas.  We are requesting completed quilts and quilt tops but will also accept blocks and monetary donations to our efforts.  Monetary donations will cover shipping, fabric, thread and other quilt costs; any leftover donations will be donated to the GoFundMe that has already been set up.

The Block:

We would love to have quilts with grayscale blocks. 

in any arrangement along with one heart block somewhere on the quilt.

Both block patterns are from Cluck Cluck Sew, using the 10 inch finished block size.

We ask that you use 2 fabrics in each block; white and a happy contrasting color but feel free to mix it up however you like!  See our Instagram or Facebook for examples.

  1. Where do I send this stuff? 

We will update you on this as soon as we have it all nailed down!  For now, just start working on blocks and quilts!

Please include a full sized piece of paper with your name, guild if a member (even not modern guilds!), what you’ve sent, and location so that we can attempt to keep a record of everyone who helps.

  1. What if I can’t make a whole quilt?

We would love completed quilts or quilt tops but if you can’t; then make a block, even one block will help. Send in some binding, send some backing fabric, send some money to help us cover postage and other costs such as fabric.

  1. I already have a quilt that is made with love, can I send it?

Send it. Please send it, we need a lot of quilts!  We offered a specific block to give people an idea of what to create; if you have already created something else, please send it on; we are happy to have it!

  1. Can I use a block other than the one you showed?

Do whatever you feel led to create; we chose the grayscale block because it is a block that represents our guild.

  1. How big should my quilt be?

I’m asking for quilts no smaller than 48×60, and no larger than a twin sized. If you are making the grayscale blocks it comes out to 5 blocks by 6 blocks or 30 blocks in total.  If you are outside these sizes don’t fret; send it on!

  1. Whats the due date?

We are asking for quilts, blocks, binding, ect. to be delivered by November 15th.  If you need a little extra time that’s OK!  We just want to try and get quilts out ASAP.

  1. Where are these things going?

Our intention is to get quilts to the victims and first responders but in cases where this is not possible or we have a plethora of quilts, quilts may be given to first responders to give to victims of violence in our community.

Hopefully any and everyone affected will receive a quilt if they want one. We are still making contacts, so if you are personally affected by this please email me at quiltsforvegas@gmail.com so we can work to get one to you!

  1. Anything else I should know??

We will continue to update as more information becomes available, so check back for the latest updates and feel free to email us at quiltsforvegas@gmail.com if you have a question!

Click here to bookmark the LVQMG website for updated information.

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Piece and Quilt Hop Along Week 2 with Vicki, HollyAnne and Kristin

Vicki, HollyAnne and Kristin are back for week 2 of their blog hop from my new book, Piece and Quilt with Precuts. Each of these talented gals is making a different quilt from the book and sharing tips and videos about their progress over a 5 week period.

Piece and Quilt with Precuts

So let’s check out what they’ve been up to this week!

Vicki Holloway from My Creative Corner 3

Gridwork blocks

Vicki is making progress on her version of Gridwork using my Modern Marks fabric. For the finished quilt she’s going to make it completely out of my fabric. However, in her blog post, she’s made a few bonus blocks incorporating some solids to show how that can change up the look.

Modern Marks Frequency blockVicki took some of her leftover scraps and pieced a Frequency block (also from the book). Her plan is to make one block from each of the quilts in the book to make a sampler quilt. I think that’s such a clever idea and can’t wait to see it!

Click here to read more about Vicki’s progress this week.

HollyAnne Knight from String and Story

For her version of Spools, HollyAnne is doing something I recommend in all of my books and classes – make a quilting plan to audition possible design ideas. I love how she’s combined different quilting designs from all three of my books for the spool blocks:

Quilting Design Ideas for Spools

Here’s her finished quilt top, also made from my Modern Marks fabric.  Don’t you just love how she reversed the color placement? Now they look like empty spools!

Spools from Piece and Quilt with Precuts

Compare it to the original version that’s in the book, to see how different a quilt can look when you switch the color placement. I really love it when quilters take my ideas and make them their own!!

Spools by Christa Watson from Piece and Quilt with Precuts

Spools quilt, made by Christa Watson, from Piece and Quilt with Precuts

Click here to read more about HollyAnn’s progress this week.

Kristin Esser From Kristin Esser.Com

Kristin whipped up her Squiggles quilt top in record time. It’s easy when you start with most of the cutting already done for you!

Squiggles from Piece and Quilt with Precuts

She quilted the wavy lines as shown in the book, using my “divide and conquer” process. In a nutshell, you quilt wavy lines “near” the ditch (rather than in the ditch) and then you subdivide each section, adding more lines until you are happy with the spacing. It’s organic, liberating, and adds lots of yummy texture to the quilt!

Squiggles quilting

Kristin also quilted several of the free-motion quilting motifs on practice blocks.
Click here to see her progress this week, plus bonus free-motion inspiration.

Remember – if you are working on any of the quilts from my books and patterns, please share them in my Facebook group: Quilt with Christa. I’d love to see!

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Top 10 Tips for Quilting on a Domestic Machine

Welcome to Day 24 of the Back to School Blog Hop organized by Sam Hunter of Hunters Design Studio. If you are new to the hop, check out the end of the post for links to all of the “back to school” sewing tips!

Back to School Blog Hop - sewing tips

Top 10 Domestic Machine Quilting Tips

1. Baste Well

This is the least fun part of the quilt-making process but probably the most important. All three layers of the quilt (top, batting, backing) should be flat and smooth. I press seams open so they lie flat, and I also take the time to iron my batting. Spray basters can press the quilt after basting to set the glue and iron out any wrinkles; pin basters should double the amount of pins they would normally use.

2.  Use a Large Work Surface

Sewing Room

Buy a large sewing desk with a drop in table if you can. If not, put up an extra table behind your sewing machine and off to the left to hold the weight of the quilt. In my table above (which I bought 20 years ago from a company no longer in business) I added a couple of books under the machine to get it to the right height. You can also get a custom insert made to fit your machine. (Just google “custom sewing machine insert). Some companies also make large extension beds that go around your machine, giving you extra surface on any table.

3. Get tools that will help you grip and slip!

Machingers Quilting Gloves

Machingers quilting gloves help grip the quilt, and a supreme slider will make the bottom of the quilt slip and slide more easily under the machine.

Supreme Slider 2 Sizes

Two sizes of Supreme Slider are shown above, on my older sewing machine: the regular size (that I accidentally stitched through years ago) and the larger, queen size.

A word of caution – the Supreme Slider is only for free-motion quilting, NOT walking foot quilting. If you use a walking foot, you may stitch through the slider (ask me how I know….)!

4. Choose the Proper Needle and Thread

Here’s a general rule of thumb for matching thread weight and needle size: use a size 80/12 needle with a size 40-50 weight thread, and a size 90 needle with a 28-30 weight thread. Sharp or topstitch needles will have a sharper point, which will allow better penetration of the layers. A “machine quilting” needle is fine, too, but it’s usually more expensive and I don’t notice a difference. A “universal” needle is ok, but it’s not as sharp as the others and is better meant for all purpose applications.

Piece and Quilt Collection Aurifil Thread by Christa Watson

My Piece and Quilt Collection is available at The Precut Store, or your favorite retailer!

You can use nearly any thread you like for machine quilting, but I my favorite is Aurifil 50 weight cotton. You can use it for BOTH piecing and quilting, and it’s strong yet lightweight so it really blends in nicely. Rather than owning ALL the threads in ALL the different weights, I like simplicty – 50 weight cotton for EVERYTHING I do: piecing, quilting, and binding.

5. Match the top and bobbin threads

When quilting on a domestic machine, I also prefer to use the same color thread in the top and bobbin. It will hide any tension issues, and avoid the problem with a contrasting thread color poking through on the top or back of the quilt. This means you need to think about which fabric you are choosing for the backing of your quilt.

Christa Watson free-motion quilting

Current quilt in progress – this is the back using the same thread in top and bobbin.

If you are are a beginner, choose a busy back that will hide mistakes and allow different thread colors to blend in. If you want to show off your quilting, use a solid colored back so you can really see the stitches.

6. Practice Sketching

Warm up before you quilt by sketching your quilting design on a piece of paper or on a photo or printout of the quilt top. If you understand the flow of the quilting path, you can mimic that motion on your actual quilt. I like to develop a quilting plan for every quilt so that I’m not stuck wondering what to quilt next.

Possible Quilting Plan for HST Remix

Here’s a real life quilting plan for a quilt I’m in the process of remaking. It’s pretty messy with notes and thoughts as I figure things out, but I can print off multiple copies if needed until I’m satisfied and ready to quilt. Sometimes I will sketch out an entire quilting plan, while other times, I’ll just dooddle the quilting design to get the flow for how I’ll stitch it.

Check out my Craftsy Class – The Quilter’s Path to learn more about this method!

Diagrams

Practice diagrams for “swirls and pearls” – one of my favorite designs to quilt!

7. Practice Stitching

If you practice your “daily quilting exercise,” you’ll be a pro in no time! I always give my students homework when I teach – they are to make up a stack of quilt sandwiches (scrap fabric and batting) to practice on for 10 minutes a day for a week. After about 3-4 days of practice, they can see a noticeable improvement!

Free motion quilting practice

Fill up a scrap practice piece each day until you get the hang of the design!

Although I’ve been quilting for over 20 years, I still warm up every quilting session with a practice sandwich to test my tension for the day. I’d rather mess up on a scrap then on the real quilt!

8. Embrace both walking foot and free-motion techniques

Books by Christa Watson

In all of my books, I include ideas for BOTH walking foot  AND free-motion quilting!

Many quilters think they’ll never be able to quilt because they expect to free-motion quilt perfectly the first time! In my books, video classes and live classes, I always have the students start off with walking-foot quilting first because it’s hard to mess up! Once they are confident that yest they CAN quilt, then we move onto free-motion. By using both techniques in the same quilt you can really achieve some interesting designs. Some students prefer to use the walking foot exclusively while others are more comfortable with free-motion work. Many times, you don’t know what you like (and don’t like) until you try!

9. Quilt on Real Quilts and Give Them Away

Practice may not make perfect, but it does make progress! What better way to learn than by practicing on a “real” quilt as a gift for someone else? The recipient won’t notice your imperfections and you won’t have to be constantly reminded of how far you’ve come! I’ve given away dozens and dozens of “perfectly imperfect” quilts over the years and never would have gained the level of experience I have now, if not for tons of gift-giving!

10. Your Most Important Tool: A Can Do Attitude!

Start to finish quilting

Yes – you CAN quilt it! And I’m here to help!
Image is from my comprehensive start-to-finish quilting class on Craftsy.

I started teaching others to quilt in the late 90’s and I noticed that the students who had the most success, weren’t necessarily those with the most expensive sewing machines and tools. (Shhh! don’t let my industry partners know I said that!!) What they lacked for in experience or top of the line equipment, they more than made up for with their determination to get ‘er done!

You know the old saying “whether you think you can or can’t, you are right”?  That applies to quilting as well. My goal since becoming a professional teacher, author and designer just a few short years ago (with 20 years of “practice” under my belt) has been to get others to realize that quilting on a domestic machine can be both fun and rewarding if you stick to it and just take it one step, (or stitch) at a time!

Check out These “Back to School” Basics:

Check out each of these stops on the back to school sewing blog hop. There’s so much information contained in these posts that you are well on your way to learn everything you need to know to make your sewing and quilting experience more enjoyable. Happy reading!!

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New Craftsy Class: Angela Walters’ Dot to Dot

As a Craftsy instructor, one of the privileges that I get is being able to watch any of the Craftsy classes from my fellow instructors. Of course, I don’t have time to watch all of the classes I’d like, but I’m always on the lookout for new classes that I think you all would benefit from. So when Angela Walters released her latest class, Dot to Dot: Quilting With Piecing as Your Guide, I knew I had to watch it as soon as I could.

Angela Walters Dot to Dot

Get Dot to Dot quilting for 50% off, through Friday September 8th.

I was even pleasantly surprised when she included one of the quilts from our book as an example, and even gave me a shoutout in class!! (Now you’ll really have to watch the class to see which quilt it is, LOL!!)

This class is fantastic and I found myself watching the entire thing in one setting. Although Angela uses specialty rulers to achieve the straight lines when quilting dot to dot, she also shows you a couple of other ways to accomplish the same task. I love it when there are options! The class includes a free pattern so that you can make the same quilt she’s working on, or you can practice her methods on your own quilt or practice blocks.

Angela Walters class quilt

Make this quilt to practice your dot to dot quilting. Free pattern included in class!

Here’s a quick breakdown of the class lessons, including the length of each segment:

1. Dot-to-Dot Quilting Overview (10:36)

Meet your instructor, stitch whisperer Angela Walters, and start class by finding the ‘dots’ on your quilt using the quilt top’s piecing. See how to stitch consistent straight lines whether you’re using a walking foot, free-motion foot or ruler foot and ruler.

2. Triangles (22:21)

Ready to try some basic dot-to-dot designs? Follow along with Angela as she stitches the simple V, triangle wedge and arrowhead in triangular shapes, showing variations along the way.

3. Squares (23:50)

Build on the designs you learned in the previous lesson with three more motifs that are perfect for square blocks, the most common shape in quilting. Watch as Angela reveals the square spiral, double V and double diamond designs. Then she shows you where to use them on your quilt to add the most impact.

4. Diamonds & Hexagons (15:35)

See how to quilt diamonds and hexagons as Angela shares three designs and variations: the spin wheels, alternating V’s and tumbling diamonds. You’ll learn how to find diamond shapes in your quilt, even if it wasn’t pieced with diamonds!

Angela Walters Quilting
 As Angela says – close enough is good enough!!

5. Uniquely Shaped Blocks (16:07)

Discover three ways to quilt uniquely shaped blocks such as polygons. Angela then shows you how to modify your designs, stitch a shape within a shape, and combine blocks so you know what to stitch next!

6. Borders & Corners (21:30)

Once you’ve gotten a handle on quilting within defined areas, you’ll tackle the borders. In this lesson, see how to quilt designs in areas with more negative space. Plus learn three ways to turn the corner without losing your design flow.

7. Dot to Dot Around the Blocks (17:50)

Finally, think outside the piecing and find out how to use dot-to-dot designs in any style of quilt. Angela demonstrates how to use the quilting to frame blocks, create secondary patterns and use wedge shapes as fillers to quickly quilt any space efficiently.

Dot to Dot: Quilting With Piecing as Your Guide really is a fabulous class. What I’ve really noticed in this class compared to her previous classes is that she’s really letting her personality show. If you are a fan of her Midnight Quit Show, you’ll see that she brings the same warmth and humor into her class. Even if you don’t even care to quilt, it’s just fun to watch and be entertained!
Dot to Dot Quilting with Angela Walters

This one is my favorite!!

Save 50% on This Class!

The best part about this class is that it’s on sale now, through Sept. 8th for 50% off the regular price. I love it that Craftsy makes their classes affordable and once you buy them, you own them forever!

Click here to get Dot to Dot quilting for 50% off the regular price.

Now, I’d better go practice my ruler work – it really is a fun way to quilt, once you get the hang of it!

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Binge Watch Craftsy for Free Today – 24 Hours Only

Many of you know I’ve long been a fan of Craftsy’s online learning format even before I became an instructor for them. So I’m excited to share the news about something they’ve never done before – 24 hours of free video watching today only!!

The free day is now over – but you can get both of my classes for 50% off the regular price!

Click here to get access to your free 24 hours of Craftsy Viewing!

The Quilter's Path by Christa WatsonMy first class: The Quilter’s Path
2+ hours of machine quilting instruction using your walking foot, free motion or both.

The Fine Print

Today only from 12:01 AM through 11:59 PM (Monday, September 4, 2017) Craftsy is allowing streaming access to their site to check out their library of over 1200+ online classes. You’ll have access to any class for 24 hours, but you won’t be able to download or save them. And you won’t have access to the Q&A instructor forum or the class materials.

Christa Watson Startup Library QuiltingMy second class: Startup Library – Quilting
Nearly 6 hours of lessons that teach you how to make a quilt from start to finish!

This is such a fabulous way to “try out” a new class you’ve been thinking about, with no obligation. If you like the class, you can of course purchase it right there on the spot, and you’ll own it forever. If you haven’t seen my classes yet, I encourage you to check them out, but be warned – it’s over 8 hours of viewing between them both! And if you already own my classes, check out Craftsy’s lineup of quilting classes – it’s the most popular subject!

So click here to head over to Craftsy and let the binge watching begin!!

The free day is now over – but you can get both of my classes for 50% off the regular price!

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Piece and Quilt with Precuts Quilt 7: Twinkling Diamonds

Wow! We are over halfway through the blog hop and the inspiration keeps on coming! Even though I designed and made all of the quilts from Piece and Quilt with Precuts, there are so many that I want to remake after seeing the beautiful color combinations my friends are making!

Today’s featured quilt is Twinkling Diamonds, made from some beautiful Alison Glass fabric.

Twinkling Diamonds by Christa Watson from Piece and Quilt with PrecutsTwinkling Diamonds Photography courtesy of Martingale/That Patchwork Place and Brent Kane.

Piece It

Twinkling Diamonds is made from fat quarters of colorful prints and fat eights of contrasting light fabrics, plus a dark background. The method I use teaches you to trim off the edges to get the nice crisp diamond points and the best part is, all of the leftovers can get turned into the S.W.A.K quilt featured a bit earlier in the book. (Click here for the blog post about S.W.A.K.)

I chose bright saturated prints and a dark navy background it so that it looks like diamonds twinkling in the sky. However, this quilt would look just as great with a lighter background, and softer, less intense prints.

Twinkling Diamonds Detail quilting

I quilted the background using “jagged stipple” one of my favorite new motifs!

Quilt It

I know that all of that negative space can be a bit intimidating to quilt, but here’s my tip: choose an interesting free-motion design. and meander your way around the blocks to add some texture to the quilt.

Twinkling Diamonds from Piece and Quilt with Precuts

I quilted irregular wavy lines in the bright section of the blocks and “cursive L’s” in the white areas. Each quilt includes step by step instructions plus a detailed quilting plan so you can follow along and get the same look!

Twinkling Diamonds Detail

I quilted all of the quilts in the book using my Aurifil thread collection – it’s my favorite!

More Twinkling Diamonds inspiration

Check out more beautiful ways to make Twinkling Diamonds blocks, and be on the lookout for who’s including a giveaway on their stop!!

Anjeanette Klinder

Twinkling Diamonds table runner

Take a look at what Anjeanette decided to do for her version of Twinkling Diamonds. Don’t you love how she fussy cut the centers??

And who says you can’t mix hand and machine quilting in the same quilt! I think she did such a beautiful hob. Be sure to see more inspiring pics and read more about how she made it her own,  over on her blog.

Jessica Caldwell – Desert Bloom Quilting

Twinkling Diamonds Blocks and Aurifil Thread

Don’t you love Jessica’s stunning color combination? I love how orange can be a neutral – don’t you? She picked out a gorgeous selection of Aurifil threads that she plans to quilt with so I’ll be keeping an eye on her blog to see how it turns out!

Head over to her blog for more pretty in-progress pics!

Jessee Maloney: Art School Dropout

Jesse's Twinkling Diamonds Blocks

I’m a sucker for turquoise and gray, and I love how Jesse shows that either solids or prints will work for the diamond centers. Notice how she added extra fabric around each block? Pop on over to her blog to read more about what she plans to do with these beauties!!

Here’s a tip – if you are just getting started with machine quilting, just make a block or two and practice quilting it. Then turn that block into a pillow, wallhanging, or one block mini. It’s also a great way to give a hand made gift that won’t take too long to create!

Today’s Gift – Win My Aurifil Thread

Today’s giveaway is super exciting. If you’ve read my blog for any length of time, you’ll know how much I love piecing and quilting with Aurifil 50 weight cotton thread. I love being able to use one type of thread for everything I do, and then stocking up on ALL the colors!

It was fun to work with Aurifil on a thread collection that includes all of the basic colors I use. Together, we decided to include two groups in the collection – colors and neutrals. All of the quilts in the book were pieced and quilted using my Piece and Quilt Collection, and I included exactly which threads I used AND how much for each quilt in the book!

Piece and Quilt Collection Aurifil Thread by Christa Watson

Click here to see which threads are included in my Aurifil thread collection.

Two lucky winners will win my thread, generously sponsored by Aurifil – one winner for each thread kit. Pop on over to Aurifil’s blog to enter, and good luck!!!

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Piece and Quilt with Precuts Blog Hop Celebration!

Guess what today is? It’s my birthday!! Whoo hoo! I’m of the opinion that things just get better with age, and each passing year is cause for celebration. So I thought, what better day to kick off my epic blog hop for Piece and Quilt with Precuts than today??

So to get us started, today I want to share links to each of the 30 fantastic bloggers that are joining me on this fun and inspiring journey, plus give a couple of sneak peeks of what’s coming up on the hop!

Inspiring Quilts From Me and My Friends

Each day starting tomorrow, I’ll share more details about each of the quilts in the book, and you can see how others interpreted the designs to make them their own. For example, check out this sneak peek of the beautiful quilts in progress from (clockwise) Sherri, Teresa, Nancy, and Jen.

You just may end up liking their versions better than the originals, and that’s totally ok!!  Hopefully once you see the versatility and variety of looks that can be made from my fun designs and your favorite precuts, you’ll be inspired to make them, too!

Sneak Peeks of Remakes from Piece and Quilt wtih Precuts

Stay tuned for the “final reveal” from 30 talented bloggers including these shown above!!
(The list of participating bloggers is at the end of this post.)

Gifts and Giveaways Galore!

Throughout the hop, we’ll celebrate by giving away tons of gifts! After all, what fun is a party without presents?? Some of the giveaways will be hosted here on my blog while others will be given away by the participating bloggers or other industry friends. So be sure and check back here each day as I send you on a fun scavenger hunt to score prizes and get inspired!

Giveaways for Piece and Quilt with Precuts Blog Hop

Just a few of the many “gifts” that will be given away during the hop!! Yes, it even includes a quilt – so check here every day for your chance to win some fabulous prizes!

A Present From me – Baby Geese Quilt Pattern

Let’s kick off this party with a present for all of you, since since you are ALL winners in my book!! The quilt shown below is called “Baby Geese” and it was made from scraps and leftovers of many of the other quilts in the book.

Click here to get the Baby Geese quilt pattern.

Baby Geese Quilt by Christa Watson

Because I included so many detailed instructions for each of the 11 quilts in the book, we didn’t have room to include this one. So think of it as bonus quilt pattern #12, just for you!!

If you’ve been on the fence about purchasing Piece and Quilt with Precuts, take a look at the layout and instructions given for Baby Geese. Just like all of the quilts in the book, the instructions are clear and easy to understand, with plenty of machine quilting eye-candy and step by step diagrams for you to follow. Chances are if you like this one,  you’ll love the rest!

Baby Geese Quilting

Click here to download the bonus pattern for Baby Geese.
I’ll be giving this quilt away at the end of the hop so stay tuned!

Blog Hop Schedule

Here’s the schedule of bloggers to follow with their names, links to their blogs, plus their Instagram handles so you can follow them there. After all, this is a talented bunch who you will want to get to know better!

Friday August 18 – Squiggles

Kathy Bruckman Blog: Kathy’s Kwilts and More IG: @kathyskwiltsandmore
Kate Colleran Blog: Seams Like a Dream IG: @seamslikeadreamquilts
Sharon Parcel Blog: Yellow Cat Quilt Designs IG: @punkydoodle53

Click here to see Christa’s version of Squiggles.

Saturday August 19 – Gridwork

Sandy Maxfield Blog: Sandy Star Designs IG: @sandystardesigns
Joanne Harris Blog: Quilts by Joanne IG: @turtlequilterjo
Teresa Mairal-Barreu Blog Sewn Up: IG: @teresadownunder

Click here to see Christa’s version of Gridwork

Monday August 21 – Frequency

Nancy Scott Blog: Masterpiece Quilting IG: @masterpiecequilting
Martingale’s Blog: Stitch This! IG: @martingaletpp
Lorinda Davis Blog: Laurel Poppy & Pine IG: @laurelpoppyandpine

Click here to see Christa’s version of Frequency

Tuesday August 22 – S.W.A.K.

Sherry Shish Blog: Powered by Quilting IG: @poweredbyquilting
Michelle Bartholomew Blog: Michelle Bartholomew IG: @michellebartholomew
Allison Dutton Blog: Allison Sews IG: @allisonsews

Click here to see Christa’s version of S.W.A.K.

Wednesday August 23 – Starstruck

Lissa LaGreca Blog: Lovingly Lissa IG: @lovinglylissa
Sherri Noel Blog: Rebecca Mae Designs  IG: @rebeccamaedesigns
Sandra Healy Blog: Sandra Healy Designs IG: @sandrahealydesigns

Click here to see Christa’s version of Starstruck

Thursday August 24 – Dot’n’Dash

Laura Piland Blog: Slice of Pi Quilts IG: @sliceofpiquilts
Cheryl Brickey Blog: Meadow Mist Designs IG: @meadowmistdesigns
Jen Frost Blog: Faith and Fabric IG: @faithandfabric

Click here to see Christa’s version of Dot’n’Dash

Friday August 25 – Twinkling Diamonds

Jessee Maloney Blog: Art School Dropout IG: @jessee_artschooldropout
Jessica Caldwell Blog: Desert Bloom Quilting IG: @desertbloomquilting
Anjeanette Klinder Blog: Anjeanette Klinder IG: @anjeanetteklinder

Click here to see Christa’s version of Twinkling Diamonds

Saturday August 26 – Windows

Terri Vanden Bosch Blog: Meanderings Along Lizard Creek IG: @lizardcreekquilter
Suzy Webster Blog: Webster Quilt IG: @websterquilt
Katie Joy Church Blog: Wild Prairie Studio IG: @katie_joyquilts

Click here to see Christa’s version of Windows

Monday August 28 – Kites

Pam Cobb Blog: The Stitch TV Show IG: @thestitchtvshow
Jen Rosin Blog: A Dream and a Stitch: IG: @adreamandastitch
Rashida Khanbhai Blog:  No. 3 Quilt Studio IG: @no3quiltstudio

Click here to see Christa’s version of Kites

Tuesday August 29 – Arrows

Lynn Kline Blog: Monkey Needle IG: @monkeyneedle
Kathy Bruckman Blog: Kathy’s Kwilts and More IG: @kathyskwiltsandmore

Click here to see Christa’s version of Arrows

Wednesday Aug 30 – Spools

Jen Shaffer Blog: Patterns by Jen IG: @patternsbyjen
Sandra Starley Blog: Textile Time Travels IG: @textiletimetravels

Click here to see Christa’s version of Spools

Piece and Quilt with Precuts by Christa Watson

Whew! That’s a whole lot of great people who will be participating! Be sure to follow their blogs and Instagram accounts. After all, part of the fun of quilt-making is the community behind it. And when you join us on this blog hop journey, you’ll get to know more fun quilting friends!!

Click here to purchase your signed copy of Piece and Quilt with Precuts

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The Books Are Here! Piece and Quilt with Precuts Ships Ahead of Schedule

I have some exciting news to share today! My third book, Piece and Quilt with Precuts has arrived ahead of schedule! That means that all of you who have pre-ordered my book directly from me should be getting it in the mail over the next few days.

Piece and Quilt with Precuts by Christa Watson

Click here to order Piece and Quilt with Precuts – and get a free bonus pattern!

Needless to say, I plan to spend all day signing and shipping them off. This is always such an exciting day!! Huge thanks to those of you who pre-ordered directly from me. Not only will you get your book ahead of schedule, you are helping me to break a record for pre-sales compared to my other two books. Wowza and thanks!!

Squiggles Quilt from Piece and Quilt with Precuts by Christa Watson

Sneak peek of Squiggles, the first quilt shown in the book. I start off with super simple walking foot quilting like gentle wavy lines. They are such a fun and easy design to quilt!
Photo credit Brent Kane for Martingale/That Patchwork Place.

Now, if you ordered the book from somewhere else, that’s totally fine. I just can’t guarantee when it will arrive since that’s out of my control. But I’m grateful for your support wherever it comes from!

If you haven’t yet ordered Piece and Quilt with Precuts, now is your chance to get your hands on a signed copy ASAP, plus a special bonus. For each book you order directly from me, I’ll throw in one of my printed patterns for all orders placed through my birthday August, 17th! You all have given me the best gift by being my loyal friends and fans – now it’s my turn to give something back. 🙂

Now is a great time to announce that August 17th also kicks off my epic blog hop for the book. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate and party with you all!! The blog hop will run through the end of August, featuring 30 different talented bloggers I met through the Quilt Pattern Designers Facebook group.

You’ll be able to check out each of the quilts I made, plus you’ll be able to see how 30 other “real quilters” were able to easily follow my tips and techniques for piecing and quilting success!

Spools from Piece and Quilt with Precuts by Christa Watson

Spools, is the final quilt shown in the book. It utilizes both improv piecing AND quilting – my favorite combo! Photo credit Brent Kane for Martingale/That Patchwork Place.

And you can’t have a party without presents, so I’ve rounded up some special giveaways throughout the event, plus an extra freebie for everyone who participates!! So save the date and plan to join the fun! It all starts here on August 17th!

Box of Books - Piece and Quilt with Precuts by Christa Watson

It was so exciting to get back from vacation and find several boxes of my books waiting!!

Click here to get your copy of Piece and Quilt with Precuts, signed by yours truly.

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Road to California Registration Opens Saturday and I’m Teaching!

I’m heading to Road to California as a teacher next January and I couldn’t be more thrilled! But before I get into the classes I’m teaching, I have to tell you a story about how this amazing show has been part of my professional quilting journey.

Road to California 2018

Road to California was the first national quilt show I attended in 2011 and was the catalyst that made me want to enter my work in national shows and become a national teacher. It was also really the first time I started getting to meet some of my favorite “sew-lebrities” like Eleanor Burns of Quilt in a Day. Like many others before me, I watched her quilting TV series on PBS when I first got into quilting, and was instantly hooked on her warm, inviting teaching style and funny television antics (such as tossing scraps over her shoulder onto the floor behind her).

Christa Quilts Meets Quilt in a Day

Meeting Eleanor Burns at Rd 2 CA in 2011 was awesome. My bangs back then? Not so much!!

When I returned the following year in 2012, I took a class from award winning thread-painting artist Nancy Prince and we really connected. I ended up helping her out during a demo at the show and she was very encouraging when I mentioned that I wanted to become a national teacher and write books.

She turned to me and said, “I bet you’ll be back here as a teacher some day.” You can imagine how happy I was to run into her 5 years later at the Vermont Quilt Festival and tell her that her prediction had come true! (She even gave me a ride to the festival one day when we were teaching at the same location – what a peach!!) It’s amazing people like Nancy and Eleanor who’ve motivated me to always be kind and encouraging, especially to beginning quilters. And their willingness to pay it forward has been a great example for me to follow!

Christa and Nancy Prince

Meeting Nancy Prince in 2012 (and sporting a sleeker, shorter hairstyle).

My Road to California Teaching Schedule

And now before I get too sappy with all the warm fuzzies – onto the schedule! I’ll be teaching a total of 4 full-day free-motion quilting classes, Monday-Thursday, Jan 15-18, 2018. Click here to book mark the site. Registration opens on Saturday, July 8th at 7 AM Pacific Time, and classes can sell out quickly.

Click each of the links or images below for more info and a supply list for each class:

Monday, 8 AM -3 PM: Fun with Free-Motion Swirls

Christa Watson Road to California Teaching Schedule 2018This sample is from “Cornered,” showing how to combine swirls with other designs.

Tuesday, 8 AM -3 PM: Free Motion Designs with Lines

Christa Watson Rd 2 Ca 2018Plumb Lines” includes modern free-motion alternatives to straight line quilting.

Wednesday, 8 AM -3 PM: Free-Motion Improv

Free Motion Quilting Class with Christa Watson - Road to California 2018Free-motion improv” is a great way to show off all your favorite quilting motifs!

Thursday, 8 AM -3 PM: Modern Free-Motion Fillers

Modern Machine Quilting with Christa Watson at Rd to Ca 2018Modern machine quilting on “Candy Pop” means little to no marking, and tons of great texture!

All 4 classes will all be taught on sit-down longarm machines and the best part is that students will each get their own machine! I’ve taught at other shows in the past where students had to share and that’s kind of a bummer. But in these classes, you’ll have plenty of time to quilt and practice my motifs and methods. All l you need to bring are your sample swatches to practice on, and a “can-do” attitude!

Let me know if you plan to attend as I’d love to see you there!
Click here to see who else is teaching.

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