A Visit With Tula Pink – I Learned a Thing or Two!

For Valentine’s Day, I got to spend the afternoon with Tula Pink, who came to town to lecture and promote her new Berning sewing machine at Quiltique in Las Vegas.

2015-02-14-Tula_christaTula and me – she’s much taller than I am, but so is everyone, LOL!!

Let me tell you – this gal is amazing, and not just because of her fabrics! She has incredible business acumen, is very clever and articulate, and has a great sense of self-confidence. Although she’s a big name in the industry, she’s very straightforward and down-to-earth, and she took the time to answer everyone’s questions and pose for pictures.

2015-02-14tula_modernitionalHere are some interesting tidbits:

  • Yes, Tula Pink is her real name. 🙂
  • Tula was originally a fabric designer for Moda, then left the company to design for Free-Spirit fabrics when Moda wasn’t ready for her out-of-the box wild colors and splashy offbeat artwork. There’s no drama there though, and she has nothing but great things to say about both companies.
  • She started off in the record industry, creating album cover art for many famous musicians. She was happy to give up goth and skull drawings so she could focus instead on creating pink bunnies, teal horses and purple owls.
  • She draws all of her artwork by hand, working in shades of grey with pencil on graph paper. She designs to scale and thinks in repeat so as to create seamless scenery. To make the most of her “drawing economy,” she’ll only draw half images, if the design is to be a mirror image.
  • She’s incredibly focused – it can take up to 6 weeks just to get the coloring right on her drawings, after she’s spent an incredible amount of time working out the drawing details.
  • She’s a history buff and loves to read all she can about famous women in history – Marie Antionette, Queen Elizabeth, etc. These ladies have inspired some of her most well-known fabric lines.
  • Tula describes her style as “modernitional” – part modern, part traditional. She doesn’t want to be put in a box and simply wants to create what she loves, hoping her art will resonate with her audience.

2015-02-14tula_pink_backDue to popular request, Tula will be offering a line of large scale, wide-backings soon!

She definitely resonated with me and I look forward to seeing more of her work in the future. Tula Pink’s fabric and threads are always a hot commodity in my precut store and I’m in the process now of designing a new pattern using her fabrics.

Quiltique Fall Teaching Schedule – More Modern Classes Coming Up!

I’m excited to announce my fall teaching schedule at Quiltique in Las Vegas. Based on the the popular response from last trimester, I will once again be teaching Modern Logs and Modern Machine Quilting. Check out the pictures below from last season’s classes – my students had a great time and made some gorgeous modern quilts!

modern_logs_purpleModern Logs looks great in blues and purples with a pop of green!

Here are the dates and times if you’d like to learn with me:

  • Modern Logs – Saturday October 4, 11, 18 from 2-5 PM
  • Modern Machine Quilting – Thursday, December 4, & 11 from 6-9 PM

modern_logs_studentsYes, you can quilt it yourself, and I’ll teach you how!

If you are in or near the Local Las Vegas area, I invite you to stop by to Quiltique’s Back to School Carnival on September 5th from 5-8 PM to check out the projects and sign up for classes! You can also sign up online after Sept 6th.

sara_fussy_logsFor even more variety – you can fussy cut your centers!

Hope to see you there!

Christa’s Soap Box – I Love Teaching Quilting!

I love teaching quilting. I mean, I really, really love it! I just wrapped up a couple of modern quilting classes last week at Quiltique and I am feeling such a sense of satisfaction that teaching is a regular part of my life once again.

Quiltique_preview_dayA couple of my samples were on display during class preview day at Quiltique.

I first began teaching quilting about 17 years ago when my oldest was just 7 months old! My mom, whom I taught to quilt, had walked into a local shop at the time (which is now out of business) and the owner asked her if she had any suggestions for quilting teachers. Mom recommended me and the rest as they say is history. 🙂

Mom and MeLike mother, like daughter – we both love to sew!

The fact that I could get paid for sharing something that I would gladly do for free was just icing on the cake! I developed a series of beginner’s basics classes and outlined methods for teaching how to make an entire quilt from start to finish. As the local shop was beginning to go out of business, I moved my teaching to a nearby Joann’s where I quickly developed a loyal following.

I would get a new set of students each summer and most of them would take classes from me all year long until I cycled through my entire curriculum. It was such fun to see them not only grow as quilters, but to watch as they developed friendships with other students in the class. They were with me through the births of my last 2 children and we would joke about how I liked to sew barefoot (and pregnant).


My daughter’s baby quilt, made by former students in 2003. She still uses it!

I had just started my online fabric shop in 2003 right before I had my daughter (who is now nearly 11) and I knew then that I would have to take a break from regular weekly teaching. On the last night of class, my students surprised with an impromptu baby shower complete with a quilt for my daughter. I was so touched it made me cry. No one had ever made me a quilt before!

Over the last 11 years I’ve kept up my teaching skills by sharing with friends, developing tutorials online, and offering occasional classes through my guild and at retreats. However, I’ve missed the interaction that regularly scheduled classes affords. Now that I’m back, it feels like old times! 🙂

log_cabinsA former student of mine, Ofelia with her first quilt – a traditional log cabin!

A highlight of my most recent class is that one of my original students (whom I hadn’t seen in about 14 years) came to join us. When she heard I was teaching again, she quickly signed up for my Modern Logs class. Just for fun, she brought in her first quilt that I had taught her to make all those years ago. And guess what – it was a log cabin. 🙂

sara_fussy_logsSara is showing off her fussy cut centers – aren’t they just adorable?

Although my methods have changed over the years along with my style, what hasn’t changed is the sense of satisfaction I get from interacting with my students. Seeing the smiles on their faces, and feeling their pride with a job well done is just priceless.

I don’t plan to take a break from teaching anytime soon. In fact, I’m expanding my reach and have already started booking traveling gigs for next year. It’s just too much fun to pass up! (And for those of you that are interested, I do sell my Modern Logs pattern here.)


Barb is excited to baste and quilt her version of Modern Logs.

What’s the most fun class you’ve ever taken?

My Teaching Schedule – Modern Quilting Classes at Quiltique

I’m super excited to announce that I will be teaching a few quilting classes this summer at Quiltique, my favorite local quilt shop!

If you are near the Las Vegas area, I invite you to sign up for one of my three classes:

Modern Machine Quilting – Wed. June 4 & 11, 6pm – 9pm

In this 2 part class, learn to take your quilts to the next level by exploring modern machine quilting designs that will add depth and dimension to your quilts. The secret is learning to let go of perfection by quilting asymmetrical textures that require little to no marking!

You’ll learn how to create modern free-motion quilting motifs as well as some of my favorite “walking foot wonders!” This class is taught using a domestic machine.

Click here to register for my Modern Machine Quilting class at Quiltique.

colorful_chevrons_finishedColorful Chevrons – Tuesday May 20 & 27, 10am – 1 pm

Make this charming chevron quilt top from your favorite colorful prints or solids. Colorful Chevrons was on the cover of Quilty magazine and most recently, it won a ribbon at the AQS Quilt show in Paducah, KY.

I’ll teach you my favorite method for making half-square triangles so you can create your own show-worthy quilt! This class runs for 2 sessions during the day, so take time off work, or grab a babysitter if needed, and meet me for some fun sewing therapy!

Click here to register for my Colorful Chevrons class at Quiltique.

Modern Log Cabin – Thurs. May 29, June 5 & 12, 6 – 9pm

Learn how to make a modern quilt from start to finish in this 3 week class! Fun “homework” will be given out as you create your own interpretation of this classic design. Along the way, you’ll learn a little bit of modern quilting history along with what I think makes a “modern” quilt.

I’m working on my version now, and I can’t wait for the big reveal here on my blog!

Click here to register for my Modern Log Cabin class at Quiltique.

Bernina Test DriveTest driving my new machine at the shop – it was love at first stitch!

I first got to know the wonderful folks at Quiltique when I bought my new Bernina from them last summer. Later, I had the chance to interview one of the owners for my series on Making Quilting Your Business. One thing led to another, and now they’ve invited me to join their fabulous team of instructors, which I’m truly excited about. I love teaching others to quilt almost as much as I love doing it myself. 🙂

One of the reasons I’m so thrilled to be part of the Quiltique team is that they know how to create “the buzz” for their excellent classes and exciting events! In addition to amazing local teachers, they bring in “big-name” quilters all the time.

QuiltiqueQuiltique quilt shop in Henderson, Nevada

Recently, Quiltique has included special events and classes from names like Natalia Bonner, Camille Roskelley and Me & My Sister Designs. Coming up this summer they will be featuring embroidery classes from Sarah Vedeler, art quilt classes with Katie Pasquini Masopust, and a special Sew-apalooza event with Kay England. So – yeah, I think I’m in great company!

Click here for the current Quiltique newsletter and class schedule. Even if you don’t live in town, a summer road trip to Vegas may be just the thing to inspire your creativity!

For my complete teaching schedule, or to inquire about having me come to your group or guild, please click here.