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!

My Schedule for Fall Quilt Market 2018 – Come See Me in Person or Virtually Online

If you are heading out to quilt market, the industry trade show in Houston, Texas, be sure to come find me and say hi! I’ll be hanging out in my booth #2134 in the Benartex Contempo area most of the time, and I’ll be sharing some fun presentations with goodies to give away!

Fall Quilt Market 2018

Click here to see all of the Abstract Garden fabrics.

If you plan to attend schoolhouse – educational seminars on Friday before the show, make plans to attend mine at 5:30 on November 2 room 342A. Everyone who comes will get a free sample pack of my new Abstract Garden collection plus one of my patterns.

My presentation is called “Kitting for Profitability” and it’s geared towards quilt shops who want to create kits from my patterns. I’ll be discussing the 4 P’s of profitability: Pattern, Product, Promotion, and Pricing.

Designer showcase

The show floor is open Saturday-Monday and Benartex will be presenting four designer showcases on Saturday and Sunday. The 7 designers in attendance will each present a trunk show of our latest and greatest and of course there will be goodies galore!

Quilt market is super fun now that I’m a fabric designer and Benartex really knows how to take care of their designers. They have a design team that gets there the day before, builds all of the booths and then decorates them for us once we arrive with our newly sewn samples. That makes one less thing for me to worry about so I can focus on being present and engaging for any quilt shops who want to stop by and see all the fun new things!

Christa Loves Fluevogs
Fluevogs are my favorite shoes of all time – and yes, they are super comfy!!

Speaking of fun things… I gathered up some of my favorite Abstract Garden prints along with my favorite coordinating shoes and whipped up 4 cute aprons to wear – one for each day of the show. To see the big reveal, be sure to follow me on Instagram @christaquilts where I’ll share pictures and videos all weekend long. It will be exhausting – but fun!

If you can’t attend, be sure to tell your favorite local quilt shop to stop by and see me, and if you want to catch all the fun from home, be sure to follow the hashtag #quiltmarket for the hundreds (thousands?) of pics that will be shared this week!

Abstract Garden by Christa Watson

I’ll be back with a wrap-up of the show when I return next week! Happy quilting until then!!

EQ Design Contest Winners

I have to tell you how blown away I was with all of the entries into the Fandangle EQ design contest last month. EQ limited it to one entry per person which was probably a good thing, or we never would have been able to make a decision, LOL! EQ picked their favorite, I picked my favorite, and together we picked a joint favorite. So without further ado, congratulations to the winners below:

Overall Winner – Betsy’s Pinball

Betsy EQ8 entry for Fandangle

This quilt really spoke to me with it’s asymmetrical modern style. It’s really eye catching and I love how she took a traditional block – the Drunkard’s Path and created such a unique, fresh design!

MY Honorable Mention: Mel Beach Slice & Insert

EQ8 Design by Mel Beach

Mel’s design absolutely blew me away! I love how she incorporated some of the design motifs from the fabric into her unique and original quilt design. Check out the blog post she wrote about her process and several other design ideas. Each improv-looking blocks is actually an abstract pieced “F” (for Fandangle). How cool is that??

EQ Honorable Mention: Janet Barker Cut the Deck

Janet Barker EQ8 design with Fandangle

Here’s what Janet had to say about her fabulous entry: “My Cut the Deck quilt design uses a range of dark and light fabrics in the same color family. The teals with lime green accents fit the bill perfectly. The quilt uses easy strip piecing with sub-cuts to make up the blocks.”

Other Favorites

I have to give a shout out to a couple of other designs that really made my heart sing. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely loved ALL of the entries and it was so so hard to choose! We have some amazing talent out there in the quilting world and I was impressed by all of the original designs. I hope that several of the entrants decide to turn their designs into quilt patterns because they are all so good!

Willow Olson – Oh My Stars

Willow Olson EQ8 fandangle Design

 

Diane – Lisbonesque-like

Diane EQ 8 Fandangle Design

 

Pat A – Untitled

Pat A EQ 8 Design

 

Terri Nice – All that Glitters

Terri Nice EQ8 design

 

Darlene Cunningham – All The Ins & Outs

Darlene Cunningham EQ 8 Fandangle Entry

See The Rest of the Amazing Entries!

There were a total of 96 entries and they were all so fabulous! The ones I just showcased above are just a drop in the bucket of all the incredible designs that were shared.Do you know how hard it was for us to choose the winners?? The rest of them are still up on the EQ site so you can enjoy an amazing virtual trunk show. Be sure to read the comments for more about each entry.

Click here to see all of the remaining entries and grab a couple of fun freebie from me – a PDF pattern download & the EQ file to make a simple jelly roll quilt from Fandangle (or any other fabrics in your stash.)

Then click here to grab your favorite Fandangle fabrics to and get started on your next quilt! Remember to use coupon code SAVE10 at checkout!)

EQ design challenge

Thanks for playing!!

EQ Design Challenge: Design a Quilt with Fandangle – Win the Fabric to Make It!

For all of my Electric Quilt loving friends out there, I’ve teamed up with Benartex and EQ to bring you a fun challenge this month! Use any of the fabrics from my latest collection Fandangle to design a quilt you’d like to make using EQ7, EQ8, EQ Stitch, or EQ Mini.

Click here for complete contest details and entry.

Fandangle Fabric by Christa Watson for Benartex Contempo Studio

Fandangle collection by Christa Watson for Benartex Contempo Studio

Three winners will each win the fabric they need to make the quilt! Complete details along with the link to download the Fandangle fabric swatches are over on the EQ blog today, so check it out! The contest will run through the end of the month.

Electric Quilt 8

I personally love using EQ8 to design all of my quilts because I usually have to design and write all of my quilt patterns for any new fabric collection months before I get the fabric. EQ makes it easy for me to see exactly how my finished quilt will look before I even make the first cut!

Fandangle by Christa Watson

If you are on instagram, be sure to also share your designs using the hashtags #fandanglefabric and #eq8. I can’t wait to see what you create!

EQ design challenge

Creative Spaces Blog Hop Week 3 – Organization!

This week on the Creative Spaces blog hop, we are discussing organization. This is one of those topics where I realize that sometimes my perfection stands in the way of me being as organized as I should. I can be an all-or-nothing type person: if I can’t organize every last bit, I’ll let everything fall into disarray, LOL!! You can see that here in my “before” pic about my sewing room cleanup!

Creative Spaces Blog Hop Week 3

For my stop this week, I thought it would be fun to share my wish list for the things I want to get to help me be more organized in my sewing room. The last time I did a major renovation of my creative space was back in 2013 and it’s high-time for another one!

They recently built an Ikea here in Las Vegas and the sad thing is I haven’t been yet. In fact I’ve NEVER even stepped foot in one, but I’m planning and scheming and making a shopping list of things I want to get to make my sewing room a little more organized.

Drawer Unit

First up is this set of drawers. I think it will fit nicely in the space underneath my sewing table.
In the older picture below (which was before I got my new fancy sewing machine), there’s a spot under the table to my left where I think these drawers would fit perfectly.

When I first got my sewing desk way back in 1999 or 2000 it came with an option to add a set of drawers there. The biggest regret I have is not making that purchase back then. I don’t even remember the brand of table it is and sadly, the shop I bought it from is long gone.

Sewing Table

This older image was from before my first sewing room redo in 2013.

Next up, I’ve been checking out Pinterest and Google for ideas on making a customized cutting table. The basic idea is to get 2-3 shelving units with wheels and put them together, then add a piece of wood on top. I need it to be mobile because it would go in the center of my space and I’d need to move it out of the way when we do photography.

ikea shelving unit

Here’s one possible shelving unit above that would work. This will definitely take more time and research, but just like any large project, that’s part of the fun, right?

Finally, the biggest purchase I’ll need to make is some larger shelving units that can fit end to end along one wall of my room. I’ve been getting recommendations that lots of folks really like the Billy Bookcases from Ikea, and this image from their site has piqued my interest:

Billy Bookcases from Ikea

Image from Ikea

So those are the 3 major things I want to purchase for my sewing room to make it more organized and usable. I’m in the very early stages of planning and I know it will take time and money to make this happen, but I’ll be sure to keep you posted on how it’s going!

Be sure to check out all of the other stops on the hop for additional ideas on how you can organize your own creative space!

Creative Spaces Blog Hop Participants

Mondays

Tuesdays

Wednesdays

Thursdays

Fridays

Saturdays

Sundays

Creative Spaces Blog Hop

Get Your Free Tickets to The Quilt Show Live Taping in Denver Aug 26

Quick announcement! I just found out that you can get free tickets to be part of The Quilt Show studio audience with Alex Anderson and Ricky Tims. I’m going to be a guest on an upcoming show and I’ll be taping my segments on August 26th in Denver, Colorado.

Click here for information on how you can get free tickets to the taping.

Interview for the Quilt ShowClick here to watch the short interview I did with Alex back at QuiltCon in 2016.

The episode won’t appear until months later, but what a fun opportunity if you are in the area. And there may just be fun goodies and giveaways for audience members!

Don’t worry – if for some reason you can’t make it, keep an eye on The Quilt Show Daily Blog for announcements of future tapings. Now I’ve got to start making my demo samples and preparing for the show!

Creative Spaces Blog Hop Week 2 – My Favorite Tools

Are you enjoying the Creative Spaces blog hop so far? I know I am! Scroll to the end for a list of all the stops on the hop and get motivated to organized your creative space! This week, 16 of us are sharing our favorite tools. It’s fun to see the ones we all love as well as picking up ideas for new things to try!

Creative Spaces Blog Hop - Favorite Tools

For my post, I thought I’d do a roundup of some previous blog posts when I shared about some of my favorite notions and tools.  I did a series of “favorite tools” several years ago and it is surprising to see how many of them are still at the top of my list. Click the link below each image to read more about why it’s (still) my favorite:

My Favorite Tools for Quilting

batting scissors

Batting Shears

Tri Recs Tools

Tri Recs Tools

Lint Roll

Lint Roller

Painters Tape Quilting

Painter’s Tape

Christa Watson, BERNINA ambassador

My BERNINA – of course!!

(The link above is from 5 years ago when I got my first 7 series machine!! Little did I know then that it would lead to my national teaching career and becoming an ambassador. It’s a fun walk down memory lane….)

Cut 'n Press

Cut n Press Mat

Big Board

Starch and a Big Board

Shout Color Catchers

Color Catchers

Squiggles work in Progress

My Design Wall

Supreme Slider 2 Sizes

Other Machine Quilting Essentials (from a previous blog hop)

You can definitely go down a rabbit hole reading all the blog posts I’ve written about my favorite tools, and this barely scratches the surface! What are some of yours?

Blog Hop Stops

Remember to check out all of the stops on the hop each day  through August 19th!

Mondays

Tuesdays

Wednesdays

Thursdays

Fridays

Saturdays

Sundays

Creative Spaces Blog Hop