Join Me at John C. Campbell Folkschool Next Year and Make a Complete Quilt from Start to Finish!

Next June I have the great pleasure of returning to John. C. Campbell Folkschool for the third time, to teach my popular start-to-finish quilting class. This is the one class I teach that walks you through every step of the quilt making process: cutting, piecing, basting, machine quilting, and binding. And we do it all in a one fun-filled week full of sewing, friendship, great food, and fun!

Registration Open Now

Click here to register for my class : Modern Quilting 101 – Stepping Stones.
Class dates are June 3-8, 2018

Stepping Stones quilt pattern by Christa Watson of Christa Quilts

Click here to purchase a print copy of Stepping Stones quilt pattern.
Click here to purchase a downloadable PDF copy of Stepping Stones quilt pattern.

Each year at the Folkschool, I’ve focused on a different pattern. Next year’s group will be making my Stepping Stones quilt pattern seen here. The best part about being the teacher is getting to see the beautiful quilts my students make. Although they are all working through the same pattern, they turn out so unique, based on the fabrics and quilting each person chooses.

Stepping Stones Quilt Pattern by Christa Watson of Christa Quilts

I quilted a simple geometric free-motion design for my quilt. I’ll teach several options in class!

This is the most intense but satisfying class I teach. Think of it as an intimate week-long retreat with me where I’ll share all of my secrets and guide you every step of the way! Class size is limited to just 12 participants so that everyone has plenty of one-on-one instruction. Students have several housing options and I have to say, the food they serve is the best southern cooking I’ve had. Seriously, you could come JUST for the food!!

Folkschool Fiber Studio

This is the fiber studio where our classes take place. There’s tons of room for everyone!

Last Year, students made my Charming Chevrons quilt pattern. They were able to make the quilt in different sizes, according to their needs, and they all turned out beautifully! By the end of the week, we were all BFF’s and it’s been so great seeing their continued quilting success!

Charming Chevrons class

Click here to read more about last year’s fun quilt class!

Click here to purchase Charming Chevrons Quilt Pattern.

In 2015, Students made quilts using my Modern Logs Quilt Pattern. This was my first time teaching at the Folkschool. As you can tell, it was so fun I’ve simply had to return each time they’ve invited me back! At the end of the week, the quilts are always the star of the show during the student show and tell. While I’m teaching my class there are at least a dozen other folk arts and crafts being taught at the same time.

Folkschool 2015

Click here to read more about the class of 2015. It will give you an idea of what to expect.

Click here to purchase Modern Logs Quilt Pattern.

I can’t wait to return next summer and I hope you’ll join me. Several of my industry friends also teach there, so if you aren’t able to take a class from me, check out their online catalog to find another awesome class that will fit your schedule. It’s sure to be an amazing experience!

John Campbell Folk School

I can’t wait to return!

Important Folk School Links:








Join Me at the Folkschool for a Week of Quilty Fun!

Please join me this summer at the John C. Campbell Folkschool in Brasstown, North Carolina! From July 31-August 6, 2016 I will be teaching a week-long class: Modern Quilting 101, featuring my Charming Chevrons Pattern.

John C. Campbell Folkschool

Click here to register for the rare opportunity to learn from me for an entire week!

What to Expect

I had such an amazing time teaching last year that when they invited me to return, I immediately said yes! Let me tell you a little bit about what to expect, if you’ve never been:

You’ll arrive on Sunday afternoon and get a chance to meet me and the other students. You’ll receive an orientation to the program along with a yummy home-cooked meal. Then on Monday morning, the week-long event will kick off with the best breakfast you’ve ever had!

Class sessions will run for 6 hours a day Monday-Friday with breaks for scrumptious family-style meals 3 times a day. Seriously, it’s worth it to come just for the food!

Folkschool Fiber Studio

This is the fiber studio at the Folkschool. Don’t you just love the barn-quilt block??

In the evenings, students can choose to spend additional additional free-time in the sewing studio, attend evening performances, or just relax in their rooms after a fun day!

The on Friday night, students will have a chance to present what they’ve made to the other classes that have met during the week. Trust me, seeing the handwork of makers from many different disciplines under one roof is incredibly inspiring!

Folkschool 2015

2015 Modern Logs quilts on stage behind the beautifully handcrafted Windsor chairs

Classes and Registration

I’ll be upfront and tell you that it’s a big investment of time and money to take a week out of your busy life for this amazing event. But it’s so worth it to escape to the beautiful mountains of North Carolina so you can enjoy this magical experience.

Class sizes are limited to 12 students so you will get plenty of personal interaction with me and the other students. (At of this writing there are just 6 spots left – so register soon!) In fact, you’ll meet fantastic like-minded quilters that will most likely turn into life-long friends.

You can also bring along a friend or spouse who can take a different class at the same time. During my week, there will be 14 classes going on at the same time including spinning, weaving, photography, cooking, woodworking, clay-working, print-making, and more!

Click here for the complete class catalog.
Click here to register for my week-long class: Modern Quilting 101.


The Folkschool offers a variety of lodging packages to suit your budget. My mom was part of my class last time around, and we stayed in this beautiful historic home that has been updated with modern amenities! This year I’m taking Jason along for the ride, and he’s going to take either cooking or photography while I teach. (He can’t quite decide yet!)

Follow the Folkschool

I sure would love for you to join me in this amazing adventure!

My Week at the Folkschool – How to Make a Modern Quilt

Last week I embarked on an exciting adventure that I want to share with you. I spent 5 full days teaching a full group of students How to Make a Modern Quilt at the John C. Campbell Folkschool. Although it’s hard to capture such a full week in one blog post, here’s a little recap:

fiber_studioThe fiber arts building housed both the weaving studio and the quilting studio in separate halves of this beautiful structure, complete with a barn block!

Day 0 – Arrival and check in. This wasn’t a full day of teaching, but as soon as I got off the airplane (in Atlanta) I took a beautiful scenic drive through the woods of Georgia to the mountains of North Carolina. The Folkschool is located in a quaint little town called Brasstown and it was a beautiful place where time literally seemed to stand still. As soon as I was out of the car, it was time to check-in for teacher orientation, enjoy a wonderful southern dinner (the first of many delicious meals), and then meet the students.

Fortunately many of my students had been there before, and knew their way around, so they were able to lead me to the quilting studio, a huge space that was fully equipped for some serious sewing (though most of my students brought their own machines).

openstudioThere was enough space for all 12 students to each have their own table, design wall and cutting area, plus plenty of ironing boards. We even had room for full-size basting tables!

Day 1-2 Cutting and sewing. Once the students had settled in and organized their supplies, it was time to cut fabrics and learn some modern quilting basics (letting go of perfection, embracing asymmetry, discovering improvisational piecing.) Throughout the week it was fun getting to know the quilters and their various styles. As a teacher, I love to share my methods but I am so happy for each student to settle into her own process and find a comfortable work-flow.

modernblocksSome of the Modern Logs blocks starting to emerge. I love all the fabric choices!

Day 3 – More block sewing and piecing the backs. Throughout the class I encouraged the students to work at their own pace. Some decided to make bigger quilts, others took their time with the process, and they all seemed to embrace the design possibilities in their backing.

pieced_backingIsn’t this a great pieced backing?

A few of the students even made me smile by throwing in a few random pops of color to their wonky blocks. They agreed that they were channeling their inner Jacquie Gering. 🙂

colorpopDay 4 – Basting and machine quilting. This was the day that many had been waiting for, a chance to learn how to quilt their own quilts! They all agreed that they preferred spray basting hands-down to pin-basting and were pleased to learn some of my tips and tricks: such as smoothing each layer with a long ruler, applying spray to the top and backing (not the batting) and ironing the whole thing to set the glue. Each time a quilter finished her backing, several others came together to get it basted in mere minutes. It was quite the efficient process!

machinequilting2This combination of modern fabrics and nearly solids makes my heart sing!

Our week just happened to coincide with Southern Appalachian Modern Quilt Guild meeting, so several of the students and I were able to attend. We got to see inspiring show ‘n tell, eat yummy treats and watch a wonderful slideshow recap of QuiltCon highlights. I even picked up a couple of great ideas to share with my local modern quilt guild (LVMQG).

wovenrunnerPam’s SAMQG show ‘n tell – her original woven fabrics pieced into a table runner.

Pam Howard is the Resident Weaver at the Folkschool and a member of the SAMQG. She was in my class and we became fast friends. She’s experimenting with incorporating her hand-loomed fabrics into her quilts. Isn’t that a cool idea?


Day 5 – The finish and closing ceremony. I am so proud of my students! After a full week of nearly-non stop quilting, smiles were aplenty as everyone got to display their work for the entire school to see. From basketry to woodworking, to tin-smithing, photography, soapmaking, beadwork and more, just about every craft you could think of was well-represented.

folkschoolcraftsSeveral of the arts and crafts on display at the Folkschool Closing ceremony.

If you’ve never been to the Folkschool, I highly encourage you to visit. They run week-long classes year ’round and I can’t wait to return!

For those of you near the Little Rock, Arkansas area, I will be teaching a shorter version of Modern Logs at the NQA 46th annual quilt show June 18-20, 2015 along with a few other classes. Click here for details.

I just made some new BQF’s (best quilting friends) and I’d love to meet some more!

Teaching at John C. Campbell Folkschool in March

One of my goals I stated for 2015 was to seek out new teaching venues. I am excited that my first national teaching event of the year will be a week-long class at the John C. Campbell Folkschool in Brasstown, North Carolina. Click here to register and come join the fun!

20140702_folkschool_housing20140706_folkschool_trailThe accommodations at the Folkschool are just lovely!

From March 8-14, 2015, I will be teaching “How to Make a Modern Quilt” featuring my Modern Logs pattern and I couldn’t be more thrilled! In this intimate setting, I’m going to walk you through the entire process of making a quilt from start to finish, including cutting, piecing, basting, machine quilting and binding. How fun will it be to get away for a week, enjoy some beautiful mountain views, and come back with a finished project?

Modern-Logs-FinishedHow to Make a Modern Quilt featuring Modern Logs

I have to honestly say that I’d never heard of the Folkschool until they contacted me earlier in the year inviting me to teach. When I took at look at their website, read through their rich history (the school has been around since 1925!), and checked out their accommodations, it was easy to yes!

In addition to year-round classes with different instructors every week, the Folkschool features community events, craft auctions and a number of different festivals. It really is a community unto itself!

folkschool_120140706_folkschool_craftsfolkschool_2Arts & crafts, music and dancing are all to be had at the Folkschool!

So here is the deal with registration:  sign up for the week long class and pay your deposit which will hold your seat in class. Then select your choice of lodging and meal packages to fit your budget. For example, my class runs the entire week with orientation beginning on Sunday evening, 5 full days of instruction (Mon-Fri), and a show ‘n tell presentation on Saturday before everyone leaves.

It is a big chunk of change since it’s a week-long event, but compared to the daily rate of other venues I’ve attended it’s quite a bargain. The total instructional time with me is 30 hours and the class sizes are very limited so it’s going to be quite the experience! It makes me giddy thinking how awesome it will be to make new friends and spend an entire week with them focusing on nothing but quilting. I’m also looking forward to evening strolls and early morning walks before class!

20140706_folkschool_naturefolkschool_3I can’t wait to experience those views!!

So if you are even thinking about it, I encourage you to sign up now. Tell your loved ones you’ve been good this year and that this would make the perfect holiday gift. 🙂