I’m Back from Panguitch Quilt Walk 2017 and I Had a Blast!

It’s been awhile since I’ve shared an update after I’ve taught a class. I’m usually thinking ahead to the next one. But I got back early enough so I had time to look through my pictures and share a few snippets from my time at the Panguitch Quilt Walk Festival. No matter where I go, I always meet the same type of fun and friendly students in my classes. I have to admit, one of the reasons I love to teach is for the camaraderie!

Christa Watson Trunk Show

I arrived on Wednesday night with Jason and the kids in tow. We got settled in and each of the teachers who were there were able to quickly introduce themselves and let everyone know what they were teaching. Although my classes had filled up right away, they put me in a large home-ec classroom (all classes were taught at the local high school) so I told the organizers they were welcome to squeeze in as many people as there were seats.

Christa Watson Trunk Show

I shared about 20 quilts in my trunk show, all made beginning in 2013.

Thursday was my longest, busiest day. I started off with a trunk show of my quilts and shared a little bit about my quilting journey from traditional to modern quilter. I always like to include a little story about the making of each quilt along with some tips on how I quilted it.

Christa Watson Trunk Show

My Positive Direction quilt is always a crowd pleaser!

Then I taught two sessions of free-motion quilting that same day. I kept the classes moving at a fast pace that I didn’t even have time to stop and take pics! I like to teach ideas from all three of my books and then help the students think about them in new ways. It’s always a treat to see what they come up with!

On Friday, things slowed down a bit and I taught the first session of walking foot quilting while Jason and the kids did a little hiking at Bryce Canyon. Students usually agree that walking foot quilting is much easier to do than free-motion quilting, but several signed up for both classes and seemed to enjoy it.

Student Work from Walking Foot Quilting

Student Work from my Walking Foot Quilting Class – Wavy Grid

On Saturday I taught a second session of walking foot quilting, and then we came home. I was able to get a few pics in class and it always amazes me how students take a concept they learn in class and really run with it!

Student Work from Walking Foot Quilting

More Student Work – Shattered Linens is a huge favorite!

I’ll be home for just over a week before I head out to the Vermont Quilt Festival. I’ll be there for an entire week, judging along with Kimberly Einmo, then teaching four classes and sharing a trunk show.

As of today, there are still openings in each of my classes and my lecture. Click here for more info. Now it’s time to unpack, catch up on a few deadlines, and start packing all over again!!

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Teaching Update – Summer and Fall 2017

I get a lot of comments and questions from so many of you wonderful readers, asking when I’ll be in your neck of the woods. So I thought I’d share a quick teaching update, letting you know where I’m headed in the next few months. If you are in the area, I’d love to see you in one of my classes or lectures!

Here’s Where I’ll Be:

June 7-10 Panguitch Quilt Walk Festival
I’m teaching 4 machine quilting classes – and while those are already sold out, I will be participating in “meet the teacher” on Wednesday evening at 5:30. I’ll also be giving a trunk show on Thursday at 12:15 PM which is free to all attendees.

June 20-25 Vermont Quilt Festival
I’m teaching 2 machine quilting classes, (Thursday or Friday) 2 piecing classes (Saturday or Sunday) and giving a lecture and trunk show on Friday afternoon. As of today, there is still plenty of room in all of them. Click here for class info.

July 28-29 Quilt Nebraska
I’m teaching machine quilting on Friday and piecing on Saturday. Hosted by the Nebraska State quilt guild, this is a retreat-style convention with different package options and a great lineup of teachers to choose from. Click here for the registration booklet – the cutoff is June 22 and non-guild members are welcome for an additional fee.

August 17-19 Coastal Prairie Quilt Guild of Texas and Houston MQG
I’m presenting a machine quilting workshop and lecture to each group for their members. You can check with each guild to join, or to see if they allow visitors.

Christa Watson Teaches

September 15-16 Sew Yeah Quilting in Las Vegas
I’ll be teaching machine quilting and giving a trunk show from my new book, Piece and Quilt with Precuts which publishes in August. Save the date as class signups will open later this summer!

September 22-23 Glendale Quilt Show in Pasadena, CA
This fun event boasts Luke Haynes as the featured artist which should be a real treat! Retreat packages are available as well as registration for individual workshops. I’ll be teaching a full day of machine quilting on Friday and two half day piecing workshops on Saturday.
Click here for show flyer with all the details.

September 27-30 MQX Quilt Show in Springfield, IL
I’m super excited about this one! I got my first national ribbon at this show back in 2013 and I’ve bee dying to attend the show ever since! Classes are filling up fast, but there are still a few spots left in my 4 different machine quilting workshops. Click here for details.

Click here for my complete teaching schedule. I have workshops scheduled nationwide through 2019 and I update it on a regular basis. Thanks to all past and future students – you are the reason I love what I do!

Christa Teaches

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Teaching at MQX Midwest September 2017

Just a quick note in between teaching events to let you all know that class registration for MQX Quilt Show Midwest in Springfield, Illinois opens up next Monday, May 15th. The dates are September 27-30, 2017 and I’ll be teaching 4 different quilting classes, all on the domestic machine. I can’t wait!!

MQX 2017

MQX holds a special place in my heart because it’s the first national show that I ever got a ribbon. It was for my String of Pearls quilt back in 2013. Although it was just an honorable mention award, to me it felt like best of show and really gave me the confidence to enter more shows. I’ve been entering this show ever since and was thrilled to be invited to teach there year this year.

String of Pearls at MQX

My show hanging at MQX in 2013 – my first national quilt show ribbon!!
String of Pearls Pattern Available Here.

With my busy travel schedule, I don’t have much time to travel just for fun, so getting to teach at a show that’s been on my bucket list for awhile is super exciting.

Click here to see a sneak peek of the classes I’ll be teaching. If you plan on attending, let me know – I’d love to see you there!

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Come see My Trunk Show in Vegas this Week – It’s free!

Just popping in with a quick note to say I’m putting the finishing touches on my lecture and trunk show I’ll presenting for Desert Quilters of Nevada on Thursday night at 7 PM at the Henderson Convention Center. The guild is very generous and allows visitors to check out their meetings for free. During the lecture/trunk show I’ll be sharing quilts from my books and patterns. Along with the Thursday night lecture, I’ll be teaching classes on Friday and Saturday.

I love sharing my quilts with other enthusiasts!

As of last check, my Saturday class (machine quilting) is just about full but there’s still plenty of room in the Friday class (improv piecing), and non-guild members are welcome to register. Click here for details. If you’re in town, I’d love to see you!

(PS – don’t forget to preorder my next book and get a free bonus pattern!)

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Introducing Craftsy’s Startup Library: Longer Format Wokshops

Just a quick note to say that Craftsy is doing a new series of classes called “Startup Library.” They are a longer format (and therefore a bit more expensive). Rather than the standard 1 1/2 to 2 hour class, the Startup Library workshops will be anywhere between 4-6 hours, literally taking you from start to finish through any project. Right now they only have 3 new classes available (hand embroidery, cake decorating, and painting with watercolors ). But I have it on good authority that there will be a startup class for every craft they offer (including quilting later this year – hint, hint). How cool is that??

Because I’m a Craftsy Instructor, I get to offer you a special discount not available anywhere else. From now until July 19, you can use my instructor affiliate links below to save 25% off the regular price of these classes. Click the images for details and to see a preview of that class:

Startup Library Classes:

Cratfsy startup library Hand EmbroideryClick here to save 25% off Startup Library: Hand Embroidery

Startup Library: Painting with WatercolorsClick here to save 25% off Startup Library: Cake Decorating

Craftsy Startup Library Painting with WatercolorsClick here to save 25% off Startup Library: Painting with Watercolors

This new series is designed to help you master a craft, whether you’ve dabbled in it before, or are completely new to it. I know I’ve always wanted to learn more about cake decorating, so I think I’m going to have to enroll in that one as a treat for myself, once I finish my next quilting deadline!!

Just like all of the other Craftsy classes they offer (including mine), you can interact with the instructor and other students by posting questions and comments on the Craftsy platform.

how the coupon works

When you use my instructor affilaite links above, you won’t see the discount until you add it to your cart, so I know it can be a bit confusing. Just click the link of the class you want and it will take you to the home page for that class. It should say “coupon has been applied to your cart” on the top of the page, so you know it worked. Then click “add to cart”, check out and you’ll be all set. You can add more than one startup library class to your cart with the links above and get the discount on both.

If you decide to enroll, please let me know what you think about the new longer format. Happy making!!

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Vermont Quilt Festival Class Registration Now Open – See My Schedule

This year I’m getting to travel to so many beautiful places I’ve never been before. That includes Essex, Vermont to teach at the Vermont Quilt Festival which has been going strong for 41 years! The show runs from Fri-Sunday, June 23-25 and classes start on Thursday, June 22. I’ll be teaching a total of 4 classes plus a trunk show. Read below for details:

Vermont Quilt Festival

The registration process for the show requires you to create an account and then purchase your $35 registration ticket which includes entry into the show the entire time. After registration, you  can then select the classes you wish to take.  It’s a little cumbersome, so to make it easier, here are some quick links:

Step 1Click here to create an account on their site. Then login.

Step 2Click here to add the $35 registration. Click “book ticket” to add it to your cart. The item “registration” is located in the “class categories” option.

Step 3Click here to view and add classes to your cart. You can search classes by category, instructor or date.

Step 4Click here to view and select any of my classes. Click each image individually to add it to your cart. Then check out and pay as you normally would.

The system will allow you to view the classes, but it won’t allow you to add classes to your cart until you’ve added the registration option. When you click on the detail of each class, it will list the number of seats still available.

Here’s what I’m teaching:

#118 – Modern Machine Quilting

Christa Watson Books

Thursday, June 22: 8-3
Take your modern quilts to the next level by adding depth and dimension to your designs. The secret is learning to let go of perfection by practicing over a dozen different asymmetrical textures that require little to no marking of the quilt. Students will utilize both free-motion and walking foot techniques by practicing on small practice samples or leftover quilt blocks. Students may bring in their tops for a discussion of possible quilting ideas.

Click here to purchase the recommended books, signed by me.

#203 – Ultimate Free Motion Fillers

Friday June 23: 8-12
Learn 12 fun fillers in just 4 hours! This class will walk you through a dozen of the free-motion motifs from The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting. This will be a fast paced class, so students should be comfortable working with their machines and have a little bit of experience with machine quilting. Book Required: The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting.

Click here to purchase the required book, signed by me and Angela.

#204 – Machine Quilting Trunk Show

Colorful chevrons

Friday, June 23: 1:30-3:30
I enjoy making complete quilts from start to finish, and am excited to share quilts from my books and patterns. I’ll share a few tips I’ve learned that make the machine quilting process easier, and will present a variety of designs that can be done on a home sewing machine. Exact quilts shown will vary and my lecture will include detailed images of machine quilting, as well as an opportunity to get up close and personal with my quilts.

#321 – Structured Improv Piecing (Facets)

Facets

Saturday, June 24: 8-3
Learn how to dive into improvisational piecing, but in an organized way. Students will create their own crazy pieced fabric, then give it some structure when they make their own Facets quilt top. Class includes instruction for quilt top only. Required book: Machine Quilting With Style.

Click here to purchase the required book, signed by me.

#413 – String of Pearls

String of pearls

Sunday, June 25: 8-12
Show off your favorite collection of fabrics with this bright, graphic quilt. It’s a great first pattern to get your feet wet with modern design. The blocks are easy to sew with plenty of background space for you to add interesting quilting texture. Class includes the instruction for quilt top only.

Click here to purchase the required pattern.

If you plan to attend the show, please let me know in the comments! It would be so great to meet you in person. 🙂

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Join Me for a Workshop in Las Vegas in May!

If you are near Las Vegas, or want to plan a fun road trip, I invite you to join me for a lecture and two workshops May 4-6. On Thursday night I’ll be presenting a lecture and trunk show about my quilting journey. On Friday, May 5th I’ll be teaching improv piecing while students make their own version of Facets from my book Machine Quilting with Style. On Saturday, May 6th I’ll be teaching machine quilting: Walking Foot Wonders and Free Motion Fillers.

Facets Quilt

Facets won a 2nd place ribbon in Paducah last year. I was beyond thrilled.

Christa Quilts Machine Quilting Books

I’ll be sharing my favorite motifs from all 3 of my machine quilting books!

The event is hosted by my hometown guild, Desert Quilters of Nevada, and non-guild members pay just $10 more per workshop. The Thursday night lecture is free, and visitors are welcome.

Click here to register for one or both workshops. I hope to see you there!

Quilt Las Vegas 2017 – A Recap and a New Milestone

Quilt Las Vegas is the annual quilt show put on by my local traditional guild here in Las Vegas, Desert Quilters of Nevada. I’ve been a member of the guild for over 20 years, and I’ve been entering their show for nearly as long. It’s the show that gave me the confidence to start competing nationally. I’ve also learned a lot about what goes on in the judging room as a volunteer. As my quilting skills increased, it’s been reflected in the number of times I’ve gotten a ribbon. However, the show this weekend was a new milestone for me. It’s the first time that everything I entered received a ribbon.

Machine Quilting demo by Christa Watson

One of the show highlights for me was getting to share a machine quilting demo and book signing for one of the local quilt shops vending at the show, Sew Yeah Quilting.

Most of the quilts I make nowadays are usually for a book, magazine, or individual pattern, so I think it’s really helped me focus on doing the best quality work I can. Today, I thought I’d share pics of my quilts hanging in the show, include the judges’ comments, and let you know where the patterns can be found, if you are inspired to make on of your own. Plus there are a couple more that my friends made that I thought were super cool. Enjoy the mini-show!

My Quilts in the Show

Churn Dash Slide from I Love Churn Dashes

Churn Dash Slide, 1st Place, Pieced Large – Single Entrant Category

 I was actually surprised that this one got a ribbon, let alone first place because the quilting on it is really simple. It’s just an allover swirl design. But the the fabrics really make it and I had a fun time taking a traditional design and freshening it up a bit.

Machine Quilting Detail by Christa Watson

Machine Quilting Detail on Churn Dash Slide

Here’s what the judge had to say about Churn Dash Slide:

  • Excellent piecing technique
  • Well balanced tension in machine quilting
  • Appropriate overall quilting design
  • Binding is securely and neatly attached
  • A crisp, clean and fresh approach to a traditional quilt pattern

The pattern for Churn Dash Slide can be found in  I Love Churn Dashes, a compilation published by Martingale/That Patchwork Place (my awesome publisher). I enjoy submitting ideas for their books where they usually feature 14-16 different designers’ patterns all in one collection.

A block from my quilt made the cover of I Love Churn Dashes – so fun!!

Quatrefoil Applique by Christa Watson

Quatrefoil Applique, 1st Place Applique

I made Quatrefoil Applique as a machine quilting sampler to show what some of my favorite quilting motifs would look like stitched out. I’m actually teaching how to make this quilt for the guild’s workshop this May, so it was cool to get a ribbon on it so the students could see it in the show. 🙂

Here’s what the judge had to say about Quatrefoil Applique:

  • Piecing and applique are neatly and precisely executed
  • Excellent quilting technique and multiple patterns elevate simple piecing and applique to a higher level
  • Very good binding technique
  • Well balanced colors and values

The patterns and machine quilting instructions for Quatrefoil Applique, and Swirling Butterflies shown below, are both included in the book I wrote with Angela Walters, The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting. I’m extra proud of that book now that some of the quilts are getting a bit more bling! (Last year another quilt from the book, Plumb Lines, got a ribbon at HMQS.)

The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting by Christa Watson and Angela Walters

Signed copies of this book are available from me, with both of our signatures.

Swirling Butterflies by Christa Watson

Swirling Butterflies, 2nd Place Open Category (Wholecloth, misc., etc.)

Swirling Butterflies is the only wholecloth quilt I’ve ever made, and it was pretty risky using such a high contrasting thread for the butterflies. But it also pushed me technically, and was super fun and meditative to quilt! The lighting at the show wasn’t super great, so you can see a better detailed closeup of the quilting below. I explored one of my favorite techniques – free motion improv – in the background areas of this quilt.

Detail free-motion_quilting

Free motion improv quilting detail.

Here’s what the judge had to say about Swirling Butterflies:

  • Very good binding technique
  • Excellent machine quilting with precise backtracking
  • An elegant presentation

Fractured Puzzle by Christa Watson

Fractured Puzzle, 2nd Place Modern

This is the second time Fractured Puzzle has been shown in a show and the second 2nd place ribbon! (It got a 2nd place in modern last year at MQX). I love how the red ribbon matches the quilt!

Here’s what the judge had to say about Fractured Puzzle:

  • Very good piecing technique
  • Well balanced machine tension but strive for consistently even stitch length
  • Quilting motifs fill the spaces evenly
  • Binding is securely and neatly applied
  • Strong visual impact

Fractured puzzle is my ultra modern take on the free Puzzle Box quilt pattern I offer for newsletter subscribers. I really pushed myself and went way out of the box by cutting it up and sewing it back together again. But it was a really fun exercise in “what if…??”

Puzzle Box Pattern

Remember – you can always take a pattern and make it your own!

Other Favorite Quilts from the Show

I was bummed that I had very little time to spend at the show, due to other obligations at the same time, but I was thrilled to see ribbons on many of my friends’ quilts. These two quilts really resonated with me:

Vicki Ruebel Machine Quilting

Argyle Gone Wild by Vicki Ruebel of Orchid Owl Quilts. She won 1st Place Pieced Small, AND Best Machine Quilting. I was so excited and proud of her! Click here to see more details of the quilting and making of this quilt. She does amazing work!

Viva Las Vegas by Melissa Curley

My friend Melissa Curley won 1st place Show Theme for her quilt “Lucky.” She names all of her quilts with first names which I think is pretty cool. Lucky was the name of Elvis’ character in the movie Viva Las Vegas. I love how she showed the iconic neon of Vegas, mixed with the more subtle side of “Sin City”

Machine quilting students

In addition to catching up with local quilting friends, it was a thrill to run into some former local students while I was demoing. Kathy and Ofelia shown above were some of my first students way back in 1999. It was fun to connect with them again at the show, and know that they are still prolific quilters! I told them thanks for being great students that allowed me to learn how to become an effective teacher. 🙂

Now it’s time to go make (and enter) more quilts!

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Craftsy Sale – All Machine Quilting Classes Under $20

I love a great sale don’t you? From now through the end of the day on Monday, March 13 (11:59 PM MDT), you can get all Craftsy classes on sale for under 20 bucks. How cool is that? I know many of you have signed up for my Craftsy class, The Quilter’s Path which is fabulous!! Thank you!! xoxo. If you enjoyed that one, here are some other quilting classes I’d highly recommend by the very talented Christina Camelli::

Machine Quilting ClassClick here to get The Secrets of Free Motion Quilting for $19.99

And

Wild quiltingClick here to get Wild Quilting for just $19.99

Of course, if you haven’t had a chance to sign up for my class yet, I’d recommend that, too!

Click here to get The Quilter’s Path for just $19.99!

Then learn how to make a quilting plan and coming both walking foot quilting with free motion motifs. Happy quilting, friends!!

Registration is Open for Panguitch Quilt Walk Festival – And I’m Teaching!

The next big show/event I’ll be teaching at is the Panguitch Quilt Walk Festival in Utah, June 7-10, 2017. I really enjoy mixing it up when I teach: traveling to guilds, shops and larger events to meet as may of you as I can!

Panguitch Quilt Walk Festival

Last year was the first time I taught there and when they asked me to return, I couldn’t turn it down because it was so much fun!

Click here to register for my classes

This year, I will be teaching three classes and and giving a trunk show. Here’s my schedule:

Modern Lanterns: Wednesday, June 7th, 2-5 PM

Modern Lanterns Quilt

We will learn how to piece this fun, modern quilt top, made from one Jelly Roll of my Kona Solids palette plus one Jelly Roll of Gray solid. Of course it will look great in other fabrics, too! It’s from a collaboration book with my publisher that releases the week of class, so my students will be the first to get their hands on a copy!

Click here to register for Modern Lanterns class.

Trunk Show: Thursday June 8, 12:15-1:45 PM

There will be trunk shows each day – Thursday through Saturday at lunchtime and they are free to all registered attendees. I’m excited to share the latest quilts I’ve been making!

free-Motion Fillers, Thursday June 8, 2-5 PM (Sold OUt)
2nd Session Has Been Added from 6-9 PM

Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting

I’ll be teaching free-motion quilting from mine and Angela’s book The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting. Students can purchased signed copies of the book from me ahead of time at ChristaQuilts.bigcartel.com, or during the class.

Click here to register for the second session of Free-Motion Fillers

Walking Foot Quilting, Fri. June 9, 8:30-11:30 AM (Sold Out)
2nd Session Added Sat. June 10 8:30-11:30

Machine Quilting With Style

I’ll be teaching walking-foot quilting from my book Machine Quilting with Style. Students can purchased signed copies of the book from me ahead of time at ChristaQuilts.bigcartel.com, or during the class.

Click here to register for the second session of Walking Foot Quilting

In addition to the workshops and trunk shows there are all sorts of other fun events like a silent auction and chocolate fest, pioneer home tours, a parade and races, plus dinner theatre which reenacts the story of the famous Panguitch Quilt Walk. It’s great fun for the whole family!

Workshop with Christa Watson

Students in my Charming Chevrons workshop last year.

Click here for the complete workshop schedule. Classes are so reasonably priced that you could fly in and stay at a hotel for the price of workshops at other venues. I hope to see you there!