Benartex Precut Project Hop Starts Next Week!

Do you love working with precuts as much as I do? Well, I’m excited that my fabric company Benartex has decided to host a precut project hop to help you decide what to make with your collection of charm squares, strip-pies, 10x10s and fat quarter bundles. And the best part is, most (if not all) of the projects featured will include a free pattern or tutorial. How cool is that??

Benartex Precut Project Hop

Designer Schedule

Below is the schedule of fabric and pattern designers who have cooked up some fantastic ideas for you. Of course, we prefer to use Benartex precuts which is why we love working with this fabric company, but  these projects will look fabulous in any precut bundle you’re dying to use!

Bookmark the sites below, then follow Benartex and all the designers on their respective facebook pages and instagram accounts for more fun and inspiration. There just might be a giveaway or two thrown into the mix, so be sure to check in each day!

Monday 3/16:

Pat Sloan – https://www.patsloan.com/

by Annie – https://www.byannie.com/

Tuesday 3/17:

Debby Kratovil – https://debbykratovilquilts.blogspot.com/

Wednesday 3/18:

Modern Quilt Studio – https://www.modernquiltstudio.com/

Thursday 3/19:

Charisma Horton – http://charismascorner.com/

Friday 3/20:

Amanda Murphy – https://blog.amandamurphydesign.com/

Saturday 3/21:

Andy Knowlton – http://www.abrightcorner.com/

Sunday 3/22:

Shelley Cavanna – https://www.corasquilts.com/

Sandra Walker – https://www.mmmquilts.com/

Monday 3/23:

Wendy Sheppard – https://ivoryspring.wordpress.com/

Tuesday 3/24:

Cherry Guidry – https://www.cherryblossomsquilting.com/

Wednesday 3/25:

Nancy Halvorsen – http://www.arttoheart.com/

Nancy Scott – http://masterpiecequilting.blogspot.com/

Thursday 3/26:

Heidi Pridemore – https://www.thewhimsicalworkshop.com/

Friday 3/27:

Christa Watson – https://christaquilts.com/

Lisa Ruble – https://lovetocolormyworld.blogspot.com/

Open Letter to My Online Quilting Students…

Dear Valued Student:

I deeply and sincerely apologize if you have sought out my quilting advice or asked for help in an online teaching platform and never received a response from me. Due to this being completely out of my control, I am just now discovering hundreds of comments, questions, and conversations addressed to me that I never received until now (March 10, 2020). Many of these unanswered replies have kept you waiting for 1-2 years or even longer.

As I wade through a mountain of unanswered queries, I ache for those of you who simply thought I wasn’t interested enough to answer, or took my silence to mean I didn’t care about you. Reading comments like “Seems like she doesn’t want to answer our question, it’s been aaaaages ago!!!!!” or “Is anyone there?????” truly breaks my heart!

Sadly, many of you may not even see this, as you probably gave up and unfollowed me long ago. Please know that I *do* care, and would NEVER intentionally treat any of my students this way.

Rest assured that I WILL personally respond to you although I’m not “contractually” obligated to do so. I pride myself on being the best teacher I can and giving help to anyone who asks, whether I’m paid for it or not.

You were counting on me when you viewed my class, and from your point of view, it seems as if I let you down. I’ll keep my fingers crossed that this reaches as many of my students as possible. I’m here for you now, and always! 🙂

Sincerely, Christa Watson

Christa Quilts

Block Chain Quilt Along Supply List and Weekly Links

I’m excited to help you make my Block Chain quilt from start to finish over the next six weeks. All you need is a copy of the quilt pattern; cheerleading and moral support are free!!

Block Chain designed and made by Christa Watson

FINISHED SIZE SHOWN IS 69″ X 69″

Block Chain by Christa Watson

This colorful modern quilt is a remake of an earlier design I created before precuts became so popular (and before I was a fabric designer). Over the years, I’ve had numerous requests to reconfigure the design so that it can be made from charm packs:  5″ x 5″ squares of a favorite fabric line.

My quilt shown above was made from one Gridwork charm pack, plus contrasting black and gray Gridwork prints. As long as you have good contrast between your charm squares, accent fabric (black) and background (gray), it will look great no matter which colors you choose!

Block Chain quilt pattern

Supplies Needed For Throw Size as shown

Refer to the back of the pattern cover above for additional sizes. Click image above to enlarge. Feel free to substitute fabrics as desired to achieve the same colorful look.

Click here to purchase the optional Block Chain Kit, while supplies last!

Gridwork Charmpack

I loved designing all of the prints featured above in my Gridwork Charm Packs.

The throw size quilt calls for 36 charm squares. A standard size charm pack includes 40-42 squares, so that gives you some wiggle room to decide which squares you want to include in the quilt. Save the extra squares to make a matching pillow, sew them into the quilt backing, or use them to make a label when you’re finished with the quilt!

Quilt Along Schedule

Click each Hot Link below to See that step

Share and Interact with Other Makers!

So now it’s time to gather your supplies and share pics of which fabrics you’ll use. If you’re an instagram junkie (like me!), please tag me at @christaquilts and use the hashtag #blockchainquilt so I can see what you are doing and cheer you on!

If you’d like to ask questions or need additional help, please participate in my ChristaQuilts Facebook group. It’s a great place to encourage your fellow makers, and get additional ideas for fabric choices, and quilting ideas.

Block Chain Quilt

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Cotton Cuts Featured Designer for March + Giveaway

I’m excited to announce that I’m March’s featured designer for Cotton Cuts, a fun subscription box that features carefully curated fabric, patterns and more! And I love that the mission of the company is to create jobs by partnering with a local organization that provides dignified employment opportunities to the intellectually challenged and to those with other disabilities.

Cotton Cuts Classic Box

I’m also excited to announce that one lucky winner will win a classic box featuring my Gridwork fabric + one of my curated PDF patterns. All you have to do to enter is a leave a comment on this post letting me know what is your favorite cut of cotton to play with? Fat Quarters, half yards, full yards, etc.

Cotton cuts allows you to customize your preferences. They offer a variety of boxes and feature a wide range of designers! The larger boxes also include a PDF pattern of your choice from the featured designer, and their smaller boxes are a great way to try out the subscription. Sign up by the 10th of the month to receive your featured designer box by the 20th! Click here to learn more about what they offer.

The giveaway for the classic box will run through Tuesday March 10, 2020. Good luck to everyone who enters!!

Pieced Primrose Quilt Finishes – Ta Da!

I always like to post a final writeup of my quilt finishes (even when I’ve done a quilt along) so that I have a place where I can refer to the when I made the quilt, and keep track of the quilt details like fabrics & batting used. So hopefully you aren’t tired of seeing my Pieced Primrose quilts, yet. They were so fun to make!

Paper Pieced Primrose

Pieced Primrose FINISHED QUILT STATS

  • Finished sizes: 35″ x 35″
  • Designed using Electric Quilt 8 software
  • Pieced and quilted by Christa Watson on my Bernina 770QE
  • Fabric collection: Abstract Garden by Christa Watson for Benartex
  • Commercial Pattern : Pieced Primrose by Christa Watson
  • Batting used: Hobbs Tuscany 50/50 cotton/wool
  • Thread used: Aurifil 50 weight cotton from The Variegated Collection by Christa Watson
  • Quilting designs: edge to edge boxy spirals on cool, swirls on warm
  • Completed: October of 2018

Click here for the free quilt along to make this quilt.

Pieced Primose Quilt Abstract Garden Cool

Pieced Primrose Abstract Garden Warm

Quilting detail on PIeced Primrose cool

quilting details

Stock up on My Books Before the Next one Releases!

Can I share a secret with you? I’ve been working behind the scenes on my next book and I can’t wait to share it with you! However, before I give any sneak peeks, I want to offer  signed copies of my current books at a discount when you enter code BOOK at checkout . It’s my way of encouraging you to update your machine quilting library with any of my current titles that you don’t yet own.

Books by Christa Watson

Click here to get your signed copy of my books while supplies last.

I really enjoyed writing Machine Quilting with Style, The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting, and Piece and Quilt with Precuts, one right after the other! Then I took a break from book writing to start designing fabric. Now that I’ve been able to successfully work that into my busy life, it’s time to get back to books once again.

All 3 of my current books teach you how to make a complete quilt from start to finish, with thorough piecing instructions, plus step by step machine quilting diagrams which you can mix and match among all of the projects. Here’s a favorite quilt from each book:

Facets from Machine Quilting with Style

Facets Quilt

This was the very first quilt I ever designed for the book and I loved making my own fabric using solid scraps and improv piecing! I was thrilled when it won a ribbon in the modern category at Paducah – even though it’s far from perfect. But it’s full of yummy quilting goodness which gives it that special wow factor!

PlumB Lines from The Ultimate guide to Machine Quilting

Plumb Lines Quilt

This is the most modern quilt in the book and it was designed by my co-author Angela Walters. We each made the same 10 quilts using different fabrics and completely different machine quilting designs. So there’s loads of inspiration for all types of quilts from modern to traditional and everything in between!

Star Struck from Piece and Quilt with Precuts

Starstruck by Christa Watson from Piece and Quilt with Precuts

Above is the original version in black and white as shown in the book. Below is my remake of the exact same quilt using  my Modern Marks fat quarters in bright bold colors. Isn’t amazing how different the same quilt can look, depending on the fabrics you choose? Modern Starstuck by Christa Watson

See All of the Quilts from my books

I created a gallery of all the quilts from my books including remakes of many of them in other color. I included a total of 64 images to inspire and delight.

Click here to view them all!

Christa Watson trunk show of quilts

A recent display of quilts from my books and patterns – I pieced and quilted every single one!

I hope you are excited to stock up on my books to complete your set, or buy an extra copy for a friend who’d would like to develop their machine quilting skills.

Click here to purchase any of my books while supplies last.

Pieced Primrose Quilt Along Week 8-Binding to Finish

I sure have enjoyed making my Pieced Primrose quilts and I hope you have, too. Now it’s time to put the finishing touches on the quilt with binding- either by hand or machine. Just remember, if you are still working on your quilt, I’m here to cheer you on – no matter how long it takes!

Pieced Primrose Warm Colorway

Because I wanted to include all 10 prints of warm or cool from my Abstract Garden line, I used 9 fabrics for the blocks and then the focal print “Raised Beds” for the backing and binding of both Pieced Primrose quilts.

Pieced Primrose in the Cool Colorway

When I first started quilting, I used to cut my binding strips 2 1/4″ wide, but recently I’ve started cutting them 2″ wide which makes for a nice, narrow finish that’s 1/4″ wide on both sides of the quilt. To figure out how many strips to cut, take the perimeter of the quilt (length of each side of the quilt) and add 10″. Then divide that number by your width of fabric and that tells you how many strips to cut.

For example, the Pieced Primrose wall size is 35″ on each side, so (35″ x 4) + 10 = 150″ of binding needed. I divide that by the usable fabric width of 40″ to which I round up to 4 strips to cut. (150/40 = 3.75). This simple quilt math works for any size quilt you need to make!

Abstract Garden by Christa Watson Raised Beds

Click here to get the Abstract garden “Raised Beds” fabric by the yard.

I was in a hurry to make my quilts on a deadline for quilt market when this fabric line was first released,  so I don’t have any step by step pics of my binding.  However, I click the links below to for several binding tutorials from previous quits:

LINKS AT A GLANCE

Click the links below for supplies needed to make Pieced Primrose

Pieced Primrose Quilt Throw Size

Pieced Primrose quilts show in the the throw size above.

Save the Date: Block Chain Quilt Along Coming Next Month!

I’m so pleased with how many of you have said you love doing my quilt alongs! So this year I’m thrilled to be sharing more quilt alongs than ever before! Now don’t feel like you have to do every single one – but I like to share a variety so that there’s something for everyone. I recently took a vote in my Facebook group and the overwhelming majority wanted to make Block Chain next and I can’t wait!
Block Chain by Christa Watson

Fabric requirements are super easy this time around: just one charm pack plus 2 contrasting background fabrics (black and gray or other combo). The quilt shown above and on the Block Chain pattern cover is Throw size, but you can make it in any sizes listed on the pattern, or easily adapt it to any size you like. The secret? Just make more blocks or add borders.

All you need is a copy of my  Block Chain quilt pattern to follow along. The quilt along itself is free!! Here’s the materials list sown on the back of the pattern cover – click to enlarge:

Block Chain Quilt Pattern

The fun will begin March 16 and just like all of my quilt alongs, we will go over every step of the quilt-making process: fabric selection, cutting, piecing, basting, quilting AND binding. If you follow me on the entire journey – you’ll have a fully finished quilt by the end, whoo hoo!!

So who wants to make this one with me?

Pieced Primrose Quit Along Week 7 – Machine Quilting

Can you believe we are almost to the end of our Paper Pieced Primrose Quilt Along? If you are just now hearing about it, scroll to the end for links to all of the other QAL posts. I’ll leave them up indefinitely so that you can make this quilt on your own time and schedule.

Paper Pieced Primrose

Click here to get the Pieced Primrose Quilt Kit made from Abstract Garden.

Quilting on Busy Quilts

The first thing to think about when quilting a busy quilt such as my versions shown above, is that the quilting won’t be a focal part of the quilt. It’s more about the interplay of the fabric colors and the geometry of the pieced design. So a busy quilt is a great place to practice a new quilting design, or one that you want to get better quilting.

machine quilt from Pieced Primrose

In the Pieced Primrose quilt pattern, I give machine quilting suggestions (just like I do in ALL of my quilt patterns). Because I made two versions of the same quilt, I quilted them with two different allover edge to edge free-motion designs: round spirals and square spirals.

When quilting an edge to edge design – I start on one side of the quilt and work my way across the quilt in a methodical fashion, block by block.

Variegated collection by Christa Watson

I used my Aurifil Variegated Thread Collection in blue and pink for each of the respective colorways. They blend into all of the fabrics and added a little bit of sparkle to the quilts. Here are a few detail shots below:

Abstract Garden Warm – click images to enlarge

Free Motion Swirls

Free Motion Swirls

Abstract Garden Cool – click images to enlarge

free motion boxes

free motion boxes

My favorite thing about quilting an allover edge to edge design is that it adds yummy texture to the quilt and is sooo forgiving! Your motifs don’t have to be perfect because you won’t see the individual stitches. And the best way to hide imperfect quilting is to surround it with MORE imperfect quilting!!

See Me qulting on Video!

I recently quilted 3 different versions of another quilt – Terrace Tiles using 3 different free-motion designs in the same way. I stitched Swirls and Boxes (similar to Square Spirals) on two of them and other fun design – Jagged Stipple – on the third.

Click play below to see  me quilting 3 different free-motion designs on Terrace Tiles:

LINKS AT A GLANCE

Click the links below for supplies needed to make Pieced Primrose

Next week we will bind our quilts to finish!

Pieced Primrose Warm
Pieced Primrose Abstract Garden Warm
Pieced Primrose CoolPieced Primose Quilt Abstract Garden Cool

Terrace Tiles Quilts: Ta Da! They are Finished!

This is the final part of my “making of” series for Terrace Tiles. I hope you’ve enjoyed the journey and are inspired to make your own version! See below for info about these quilts and the previous progress posts.

Terrace Tiles by Christa Watson

Terrace Tiles Finished Quilt Stats

  • Finished sizes: Amethyst and Citron 38″ x 57″; Breeze 57″ x 76″
  • Designed using Electric Quilt 8 software
  • Pieced and quilted by Christa Watson on my Bernina 770QE
  • Fabric collection: Gridwork by Christa Watson for Benartex
  • Pattern: Terrace Tiles by Christa Watson
  • Batting used: Hobbs Heirloom 80/20 cotton/polyester
  • Thread used: Aurifil 50 weight cotton from The Variegated Collection by Christa Watson
  • Quilting designs: edge to edge swirls, boxes and jagged stipple
  • Completed: October of 2019

Terrace Tiles Amethyst

Terrace Tiles Amethyst

Terrace Tiles Amethyst

Terrace tiles Breeze

Terrace Tiles Breeze 1500

Terrace Tiles Breeze

Terrace Tiles Citron

Terrace Tiles Citron

Terrace Tiles Citron

Kits and Patterns Available

MakinG of Terrace Tiles

Terrace Tiles pattern front cover

Terrace Tiles pattern back cover