Free Motion Quilting Webinar on 4/15, Sponsored by The Modern Quilt Guild

If you are member of The Modern Quilt Guild, I hope you’ll join me live on Wednesday, April 15 at 11 AM PST (1 PM CDT) for an hour-long machine quilting webinar and demo.

Christa Quilts

I’ll be sharing quilting tips and tricks and answering your questions live. This is part of The MQG’s Keep Calm and Sew on series of content for their members. If you aren’t yet a member, you can join now and then watch the webinars any time you like, after they’ve been recorded.

Here are the rest of this week’s free resources:MQG Keep Calm and Sew On

All MQG members should have received an email with a registration link. If you missed it, you can log into The MQg website to sign up.

This is the 4th week that The MQG has been sharing 2 webinars per week as well as a downloadable PDF. Hopefully this content will inspire you and help uplift you during this crazy time.

Pattern Clearance $4.95 Each While They Last! (Plus some eye candy machine quilting!)

I’m making way for some new patterns coming this summer (to go along with some new fabric) so it’s time to clear out some of my older paper patterns. The following 4 printed patterns are on sale now until they are sold out – first come first serve!

Charming Chevrons

Click here to get Charming Chevrons for $4.95 with Free US Shipping

Charming Chevrons Quilt Pattern by Christa Watson of Christa Quilts

This was my very first pattern I ever released and the good news is I will actually be releasing a newer updated version with upcoming fabric. But in the meantime, you can get the original version of Charming Chevrons for a killer price!

Here’s another version I made when I was on a solids kick:

It was so fun to quilt this one!!

Positive Direction

Click here to get Positive Direction for $4.95 with Free US Shipping

Positive Direction Pattern Cover by Christa Quilts

This was one of my earlier patterns from before I started designing fabric. It’s perfect for using up scraps or leftover strips!

Here are some beauty shots of the quilt + quilting. I combined simple straight lines with pebbles, alternating the quilting design to emphasize the colorful blocks.

Positive Direction Quilt Pattern

Positive Direction Quilt Pattern by Christa Quilts

Modern X

Click here to get Modern X for $4.95 with Free US Shipping

Modern X Quilt Pattern by Christa Watson of Christa Quilts

This has been one of my all time most popular modern designs. It’s simple yet eye catching and one of these days I will remake it using my own fabric prints in similar colors.

Irregular straight line quilting brings a wow factor to this modern minimalist quilt. I was thrilled when it won a ribbon at my local quilt guild’s show several years ago.

Modern X quilt

Improv Squares

Click here to get Improv Squares for $4.95 with Free US Shipping

Improv Squares by Christa Watson for Christa Quilts

This quilt pattern is a fun way to ease into improv piecing and it’s made from one layer cake + background fabric. I only have a couple of these left, so grab it before they are gone!

Improv Squares Quilt Pattern using Modern Marks Fabric

Click here for all printed patterns on clearance.

PDF Patterns on Sale

Once the paper versions above are gone, that’s it! I need the shelf space for new stuff to come!
However, if you prefer instant download patterns, many of my current line of my PDF patterns are on sale in my Etsy shop for 15% off the regular price.

Click here for my entire line of PDF patterns on Etsy.

ChristaQuilts Patterns

Happy Sewing, Friends!

Block Chain QAL Week 4 – Batting, Backing and Basting

Now we come to everyone’s least favorite part of quilt-making: the basting! But if you take it one step at a time and prepare the layers of the quilt properly, this part will be a breeze, and you’ll be on to quilting in no time.

Block Chain quilt bating

The Batting Should be Several Inches Larger that the Quilt Top

The most important step in basting a quilt is to ensure that the batting and backing are several inches larger than the quilt top all the way around. Sometimes I can get away with less If I’m careful.

For me, the easiest way to measure the batting is to buy a roll of it, then unroll it across the width of the quilt top and roughly trim off the amount I will need. In the photo above, I’m using Hobbs Tuscany cotton/wool batting which is one of my favorites. It’s 90″ wide and folded double on the bolt. So after I trim off a chunk from the bolt, I’ll lay the quilt top out and trim of several inches from the top of the batting. I save those chunks to make practice quilt sandwiches later.

For my backing I used the same gray Hourglass print that I used for the background because I really like it! The busy print will help hide any quilting imperfections!

gridwork Hourglass gray

Click here to get the Gridwork Hourglass print by the yard.

Piecing the Backing

Refer to page 7 of the Block Chain quilt pattern for how big to cut your backing pieces. The backing should be a few inches larger than both the quilt top AND the batting so you have plenty of room for basting. The extra will get trimmed off later. I like to sketch out a diagram of my quilt backing so I know how to piece it together.

For my size quilt (69″ x 69″) I want to piece together a square that’s approximately 76″ – 80″ square. Once I trim off the selvages, the width of the diagram below will be about 80 wide. I can cut my backing (4 1/2 yds total for this size) into two equal pieces, about 80″ each (2 1/4 yds x 36″, rounded down an inch). I sew my backing together with 1/2″ seam and press the seams open.Pieced quilt back

Time to Baste!

I didn’t take step by step pics when I basted this quilt. However, I used my fast and easy spray basting technique that I use on each and every quilt. You can click here for a step by step photo tutorial of the process, or click the image below for a speedy YouTube video of the process (on my Infrastructure quilt:

Click here (or the image above) to see my speeded up spray basting video.


My favorite part of making any quilt is machine quilting it and I can’t wait to share some video snippets on how I actually quilted this quilt!! It’s a modern, geometric design that is fast, fun and easy to do! So join me again next week, and don’t worry if you aren’t to that point yet. I’ll keep these quilt along tips on my site indefinitely so you can refer to them any time you need to!

block chain quilt


More Free Stuff: Free Pattern, Designers Virtual Trunk Show

I love how the quilting community rallies together to support fellow makers! Today I’m back with more free stuff to keep you inspired. After all quilting is such good therapy, right??

Free Zipped Up Pattern in Modern by the Yard

Modern by the yard

This fabulous modern quilt, Zipped Up was designed by my talented friend Lisa Ruble and it features a few of my Gridwork fabrics. It a simple, yet striking design that sews up super quick!

Click here to get the lastest issue of Modern by the Yard from Benartex – For Free!

Quilter’s Candy LIVE Virtual Trunk Show

Speaking of amazing quilting friends, Tammy Silvers and Cherry Guidry have teamed up with dozens of designers to offer free live trunk shows every day through April 10. These 15 minute trunk shows are happening every hour, on the hour from Noon-8 PM EST (9-5 PST).

Quilt Candy Trunk Show

Each of the virtual live trunk shows are happening on the individual designers’ facebook page or group. Click each of the links below to like, follow or join so you don’t miss out on the fun. The event started earlier this week, but you can go back and watch any of them after they go live. It’s a LOT of links with LOADS of inspiration!

Mine will go live in my Facebook group Tuesday, April 7th at 8 PM EST so stay tuned!!

April 1 – All Times EST

April 2 – All Times EST

6pm Tammy Silvers/Tamarinis

April 3 – All Times EST

April 4 – All Times EST

12pm Sherry Shish – Powered By Quilting
1pm Bill Locke – Bill Locke Designs
2pm Toni Smith/Quiltoni
3pm Tammy Silvers/Tamarinis
4pm Jennifer Fulton
5pm Jessica Caldwell
6pm Monique Kleinhans
7pm EST Heather Long

April 5 – All Times EST

April 6 – All Times EST

12pm Becca Fenstermaker
1pm Cherry Guidry
2pm Cheryl Lynch
3pm Annie Smith
5pm Reeze Hanson
7pm EST Melissa Marginet

April 7 – All Times EST

12pm Margaret Willingham
1pm Kate Colleran
2pm Barbara Cline
3pm Barbara Persing
4pm Sharon Andersen
6 PM Sandra Starley
7pm Diane Harris
8pm Christa Watson

April 8 – All Times EST

12pm Tina Dillard Designs
1pm Raija Salomaa
2pm Robin Koehler
3pm Terri Vanden Bosch
4pm Jackie Kunkel
5pm Leanne Parsons
6pm Laura Piland/Slice of Pi Quilts
7pm Ebony Love
8pm EST Tammy Silvers/Tamarinis

April 9 – All Times EST

6pm Karen L. Miller / Redbird Quilt Co.
7pm Kathryn LeBlanc
8pm Monique Kleinhans

April 10 – All Times EST

7pm Toni Smith/Quiltoni


Stream My Online Video Content For Free + Free Live Event!!

It might seem like we are all living in an April Fools joke lately, but fortunately I’m here to share some free content with you – and that’s no joke! First up – I’m thrilled that Bluprint is offering all 3 of my online video class for free until April 9, 2020. Click the links below each image to register and watch for FREE:

The Quilter's Path by Christa Watson

Click here to watch The Quilter’s Path for free.

Learn how to quilt some of my favorite Walking Foot and Free Motion designs + a free pattern to practice your skills. This is like taking a class with me in person. Since most of my events have been cancelled this spring, I’m still glad I can reach anyone who views this class!

Startup Library Craftsy Class by Christa Watson Click here to watch Startup Library Quilting for free.

This comprehensive class is over 6 hours of instructions and includes every single step of the quilt main process: cutting, piecing, basting, quilting and binding.

craftsy Class Starry Path Quilt

Click here to watch Startup Project: Starry Path Quilt for free.

This is a shorter start to finish class with a fun free pattern and bonus quilting ideas.

Speaking of fun online events, I’m also participating in The Maker’s Online Sewing Summit, hosted live on Facebook by My Girlfriend’s Quilt Shoppe. Each day this week at 11 AM PST, owner Kris Thurgood will be chatting with a different designer live on Facebook.

These will all be recorded, so you can catch any of them you missed. See the list of designers below and be sure to catch my event on Thursday!

Online sewin summit

Click here to like and follow My Girlfriend’s Quilt Shoppe on Facebook.

As a special bonus, you can click here to download a free workbook to follow along the event and take notes.

I hope these fun and free events will bring some cheer to your sewing room this week! I’ve got more fun and free events lined up next week, too – so stay tuned for details! 🙂

Block Chain QAL Week 3 – Sewing the Quilt Top

How are your Block Chain quilt blocks coming along? Be sure to share pics of your progress in my ChristaQuilts Facebook group or instagram #blockchainquilt and ask any questions you have. I love to cheer you on!

Block Chain quilt pattern

Click here for my free tutorial on how to make a design wall.

This week it’s time to finish up those blocks and sew them into a completed quilt top, also knowns as a “flimsy.” Refer to the Block Chain pattern pages 5-7 for the step by step instructions.

The easiest way to arrange your blocks is to use a design wall so you can stand back and play around with the color placement of your blocks. Just don’t overthink it since they will look great no matter what!

If you don’t have a design wall, you can use a design floor, or maybe even a design bed! No matter where you lay them out, be sure to take a picture of them with your camera phone, so you can refer back to the layout again and again as you sew.

I was in a hurry to make this quilt so I don’t have a lot of in-progress pics, but I want to point out a little thing I like to do when sewing the blocks. You can see a closeup of the pattern layout here in this diagram:

block layout

Rotate every other block so that the background seams don’t intersect. This will make it faster and easier to sew the rows together. Pin generously for best results and press each row as you go. In fact, I like to sew pairs of blocks, then press them, then sew them into larger pairs. It’s easier to press smaller chunks of blocks so the whole process isn’t so overwhelming.

Sew a Victory Lap!

When the quilt top is complete, you’ll want to “stay-stitch” the edges by sewing all the way around the edges of the quilt (called the perimeter.) Do this about 1/8″ away from the edge so it will get hidden when you put on the binding. If you add borders to your quilt, you can skip this step since the borders will stabilize the edges instead.


After we are done with the top, it will be time to piece the backing, prep our backing and get ready to baste. This is a quick process so you can take a little extra time to finish your quilt top if needed.

My finished quilt top is ready to baste!


Make More Quilts from Your Favorite Precuts: My Stop on the Benartex Precut Hop!

Today is my stop on the Benartex Precut Project Hop and I have a load of fun ideas for you! I’ve rounded up a collection of precut-friendly quilts I’ve made from my 5 Benartex fabric collections, including a mix of free patterns, paid patterns, and remakes from my books. I hope this will inspire you to put those precuts to use!

The Freebies

Click here to download any of these free patterns shown below.

Rainbow Taffy Made from Charm PacksRainbow Taffy by Christa Watson made from Modern Marks

By using 4 Modern Marks Charm packs +  white background I was able to really show off the rainbow in my debut collection. You’ll get a different look when using scrappy charms, but it’s just as much fun to make!

Beaded Lanterns Made from Strip-Pies

Beaded Lanterns Finished Quilt

This quilt solved the dilemma of how to use precut 2 1/2″ strips + background all from the same collection. With the introduction of the gray print from my Fandangle line, I designed this quilt so that it uses 36 (out of 40) Fandangle precut strips. That gives you wiggle room to leave out a couple of fabrics if needed and still get a cohesive looking quilt.

Paid Patterns

Click here to purchase paper versions of my paid patterns
Click here to purchase PDF versions of my paid patterns

Improv Squares Made from 10″x10″ Squares

Improv Squares Quilt Pattern using Modern Marks Fabric

The original version of this quilt was made from 10″ squares of my Modern Marks line. Since the Modern Marks 10″ squares have long since sold out, I’ve been itching to remake this quilt using gone of my other fabric lines. All you need is a contrasting background fabric to really make those precuts pop!

Bling Made from Fat Quarters

Bling Quilts with Geo Pop

I love this quilt pattern so much I made it twice! Both of these versions hung in my trade show booth to showcase my Geo Pop fabric collection. I wanted to show what it would look like using the exact same block fabrics, but with a completely different background fabric in black or white. Which one is YOUR favorite??

Color Weave made from Precut Strips (or Fat Quarters)

Color Weave Quilt Abstract Garden Fabric

This has been BY FAR my most popular pattern ever. This rainbow-colored quilt was really quite satisfying to make. The pattern comes with instructions to make it from precut strips (I made my version from Abstract Garden). If you don’t have duplicate strips (2 of each color), you can also make it from fat quarters to get the rainbow gradation effect.

Lattice Work Made from Charm Squares

LatticeWork quilt by Christa Watson

This pattern is such a great design to show off a favorite bundle of precut squares! I love charm pack patterns because they are super versatile; if you don’t have enough charms, you can use 10″ squares instead and then cut them into 4 squares each.

Terrace Tiles Made from Fat Quarters

Terrace Tiles by Christa Watson

I loved this design I made it three times to show off 3 different colorways of my newest line, Gridwork. Fat Quarters are actually my favorite precut because they are the most versatile. You can cut ANY precut you like from fat quarters, and you’ll always have enough.

From My Books

Click here to get signed copies of my quilting books.
The patterns below are all included in my book Pieced and Quilt with Precuts

Star Struck Made from Fat Quarters

Modern Starstuck by Christa Watson

Dot n Dash made from 2 1/2″ Precut Strips

Dot 'n Dash quilt by Christa Watson

Squiggles Made from 5″ Squares

Squiggles by Christa Watson

I love precuts so much that I wrote an entire book on what to do with them!
I hope you’ve enjoyed this virtual trunk show and are inspired to put them to good use.

Enter My Giveaway!

To celebrate my love of precuts, I’m offering 3 lucky winners a PDF pattern of their choice from my current pattern line below. Most of them are precut friendly and they are all fun to make!

ChristaQuilts Patterns

To enter, first take a look at all of the projects that have been shared so far during the hop. (Click this link for all of the participants and check out their amazing projects.) Then leave me a comment on THIS POST letting me know which has been your favorite project (and who made it if you can remember)! The giveaway will run through the end of the month, March 31 and the winner will be notified via email.

Sneek Peek alert!!

I’m now in the midst of sewing up a plethora of new precut friendly projects and patterns fro a future fabric line… so stay tuned!!! There will be precuts-a-plenty later this summer. 🙂

good vibes by christa watson for Benartex


Virtual Designer Hop Part 2 of 2

Stay at Home and Hop With Us!

The word is to stay at home so why not just stay at home and hop with us!?! These are extraordinary times we are living through and many of us are no doubt stitching up a storm at
home! Last week I shared the first part of a long list of designers’ sites for you to explore. This week I’m back with the res of the list below. Have fun exploring and take your time to look around!

  • Powered by Quilting

  • Cottage Rose Quilt Patterns

  • The Cloth Parcel

  • Faith and Fabric

  • Linen Closet Designs

  • Designs by Sarah J

  • Rona the Ribbiter Quilts

  • Quilt Fox Designs

  • Seam to Be Sew

  • Studio R Quilts

  • Toadally Quilts

  • From Blank Pages

  • Cotton Street Commons

  • Puppy Girl Designs

  • Phoebe Moon Quilt Designs

  • The Devoted Quilter

  • Stitched by Susan

  • Tamarinis

Block Chain QAL Week 2 – Sewing the Blocks

What a week it has been since we began! I know that many of you are home sewing and I hope this Block Chain quilt along is just what you need to make something beautiful when the world is in a bit of chaos! This week we will be sewing our chain blocks using the 5″ charm squares + black accent fabric.

Blockchain quilt blocks

My blocks above are made from Gridwork charm squares + square grid fabric in black

Follow the Block Chain pattern instructions on page 2 to trim down your black strips, and sew the center units shown above.

For the next step, I used the hourglass fabric in gray for my contrasting background because I love the texture, but I think it would look super cool with the black/white print also.

Click here to get the Gridwork hourglass prints by the yard in black/white or gray.

Continue with the pattern instructions on pages 3-5 to sew as many blocks as you need for your size. The contrast around the center squares really makes them pop!

Block chain blocks

Tip: when sewing all of the complete blocks above, I like to chain piece as much as possible. That means sewing all of the same unit to all of the blocks, one right after the other without clipping threads in between. I prefer to sew with a shorter stitch length (2.5 instead of 3.0) and press my seams open for nice, flat blocks.

Click here to get my Aurifil Neutrals Thread Box for just $99 while supplies last! 

Sewing with a shorter stitch length also hides the piecing thread so it doesn’t poke through in between the seams. I used my neutrals thread collection for piecing this quilt because they blend into all of the different colored fabrics.


Next week we will start sewing our blocks into the quilt top. Just remember, you can work at your own pace, faster or slower as you wish. I’m here to cheer you on each step of the way!


Virtual Designer Hop Part 1 of 2

Stay at Home and Hop With Us!

No doubt like me, all of your upcoming quilty events have been postponed or cancelled and you find yourself now stitchin’ up a storm at home!  Why not take a break and join me on a virtual pattern designer shop hop? Come join the fun and virtually hop on over to some of my favorite friends in the quilting industry!!

Starting today, which happens to be International Quilting Day,  I’ll invite you to explore the newest inspiration from over dozens of my designer friends.  All of them have something unique to offer to you – our virtual shop hoppers !

Because the list is so large I’ve broken it up into a couple of posts so you don’t get overwhelmed. Follow each of these links below to explore my friends’ websites or other social media, and then stay tuned for another post next week where I share the rest!

  • Beaquilter

  • Presto Avenue Designs

  • Hissyfitz Designs

  • Anjeanette Klinder Designs

  • Pat Sloan – The Voice of Quilting

  • Said With Love

  • Orange Blossom Quilt Design

  • DaySpring Quilt Company

  • Ms P Designs, USA

  • Stitchin’ at Home

  • Sew Joy Creations

  • Ships & Violins

  • Patti’s Patchwork

  • Your Sewing Friend

  • The Geeky Bobbin

  • Colourwerx Designs

  • Kate Colleran Designs