Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Quilt Market: Take & Teach, Festival Classes

*Affiliate links may be present, If you make a purchase through a link, I receive a small commission that helps support the blog at no additional cost to you.

Prior to this Quilt Market, I had neglected to give consideration to one of the most awesome facets of concentrated education and inspiration, Take & Teach. My oversight may have been because the hour and a half sessions come at the front end of a jam packed day or because there is so much to take in at Quilt Market that it feels like your mind will blow, but these hands-on sessions were chock full of goodness.

I snuck in and took a little peek. Lucky you, I'm inviting you to go beyond the scenes with me where usually only quilt shop owners get to explore. Here's the backstage tour!

Last year, I caught sight of the traditionally-inspired, but simultaneously on-trend, Brimfield Awakening Block. Eager participants in the Take & Teach class got a run-down of the basic steps in EPP.

The ladies participating in the Spring Mug Rug, presented by Debra Haney of Clover Needlecraft, took wearable art to the next level.

They were exploring Clover's new paper-backed fusible, Wonder Fuse.

Festival courses were a flurry of creativity and the skillful use of techniques taught firsthand by masters of quilt artistry. Here a student in the Painting Images with Dyes class taught by Hollis Chatelain class put shading, blending, and highlighting to work on a fish.

Another student conquered flora instead.

Hollis is a world renowned, award-winning artist. A privilege provided by Festival is access to the highest caliber quilt professionals all in one location. 

The merging of artistic mediums is a fascinating development shown both in multi-media classes and on the show floor.

Feathered Star is an enduring classic block due to its awe-inducing points. Peggy Martin taught her students The New Feathered Star using Quick Strip Paper-Piecing.

Feathers Four Ways for Domestic Machines taught by Jenny K. Lyon, author of Free-Motion Quilting  From Ordinary to Extraordinary made me want to jump on a machine and join the fun. Just look at all the masterpieces Jenny has created.

Her students produced a flock of feathers in splendid array.

Cindy Grisdela, author of Fabric Painting and Artful Improv, taught a Fire and Ice Bargello class.

Melinda Bula is known by her radiantly and realistic enlarged garden blooms. Students produced a variety of Fabulous Fusible Flowers, specifically hibiscus. Unfortunately, while Melinda was in Houston, her home was lost to the California fires.

Collage the Garden with Sarah Ann Smith brought forth the foliage as well.

Barbara Olson had her Jump Start Your Creativity students well under way on their projects by the end of class. Each was beautiful and unique.

It's all about the details in Seed Bead Botany with Nancy Eha. Many prominent quilts on the show floor certainly used embellishment to create intricate details.

Lama, lama, bead-a-rama!

Now, I must mention that some classes did not live up to their description at all, and I for one, was disappointed. Take for instance, the Take Your Pants Off and Let's Make Some That Fit class. Every last one of the students was still wearing pants--serious proof that it's all smoke and mirrors with Judy Kissinger. Let me know if you have any information about this scandalous modest deception.

Unlike Judy Kissinger's class, Laurie Ceesay's Whimsical Selfie Quilt class had nothing to do with your lower half and focused on above the waist. There were many striking resemblances, and the students said the process was both easy and fun.

Speaking of easy and fun, that's just what Kathy Kansier's Fast and Easy Broderie Perse Appliqué promised. Based on student response, I conclude that she delivered on that promise.

Gail Garber challenged her students to create original artwork using freezer paper foundation paper-piecing methods in her Design Sensational Stars class.

Kimberly Einmo's Fire and Ice Quilt has captivated my attention since I saw it in person at a local show. The student I spoke with had taken one of Kimberly's classes previously and swore her points came together so much better due to the tips she learned. 

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Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Quilt Market: Christa Watson & Contempo by Benartex

*Affiliate links may be present, If you make a purchase through a link, I receive a small commission that helps support the blog at no additional cost to you.

I'm a long time follower of Christa Quilts and have had the pleasure of meeting Christa Watson several times at Quilt Market. She's is as talented as she is humble and genuine. I am grateful for her savvy industry advice and generosity in uplifting fellow designers. As a Bluprint (formally known as Craftsy) instructor, established pattern designer, Bernina Ambassador, Quilt Con faculty member, and designer of multiple Contempo/Benartex fabric collections; it would be understandable for her to own an air of superiority, but that's the very antithesis of Christa. She can be found taking time to chat with customers in between a jam-packed Schoolhouse schedule, making introductions between industry professionals who have previously only interacted online, and asking other designers about their goals with a genuine desire to help.

Christa's Abstract Garden collection is a riotous parade of modern color and shapes. The yo-yos in the Mod Garden Pillow by The Quilt District certainly highlight this fact.

The Contempo booth was laden with inspiration including the pictured Mod Cat by Linda & Carl of Colourwerx, Pieced Primrose (PDF pattern here), and the Lattice Work Quilt. (PDF pattern here.)

I recognized the Lattice Work Quilt (PDF pattern here.) above from the Schoolhouse session I had with Christa.

For that matter, Pieced Primrose, a foundation paper-pieced pattern with 2 size options (PDF pattern here.) also made a reappearance. 

As for the booth, panning further right revealed Blooming Wallflowers (PDF pattern here.) and Pieced Primrose, (PDF pattern here.) Mod Dog from Colourwerx hides below the quilts.

Geese in the Garden (PDF here.) is a new pattern from Christa with three size options that features diamonds without need for a specialty ruler. All you need is a regular acrylic ruler with a 45 degree angle marking. Like many of her patterns, she includes two possible colorways, clear diagrams, and quilting suggestions.

The A Star is Born pattern from The Stitch TV Show (PDF pattern here) shows off the fabric line and takes advantage of precut possibilities.

Blooming Wallflowers is very clever in its use of Triangles in a Square units within an on-point layout. (PDF pattern here.) 

Like seeing those I admire in person, such as Christa, interacting with all of you here and on Facebook and Instagram is a joy for me. It's pretty special to know there are those who are passionate about fabric and making beautiful things who take the time to hear my musings and be a friend from afar. In thanks, I have another giveaway below to share my treasures from Quit Market. I'm including a charm pack of Abstract Garden, a FQ from the collection, and Christa's Surplus Strips pattern. (PDF here.) It's a full-color, glossy booklet with diagrams, multiple colorways illustrated, and even quilting suggestions.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Black Friday / Cyber Monday Quilting Specials

*Affiliate links may be present, If you make a purchase through a link, I receive a small commission that helps support the blog at no additional cost to you.

If you're a deal seeker with a quilting habit, here's the round-up for you.

Use code CYBER10 to save an Extra 10% Nov. 26 & 27 at The Quilting Company.Save an Extra 10%on Nov. 26-27.

The Quilting Company

Bluprint (Craftsy) is having their best subscription price of the year, and on Cyber Monday you also get a $25 Craftsy coupon.

Bluprint Black Friday Deals - Best Membership Prices of 2018! Valid 11/21-11/26/18 at

With Creativebug you can give and receive. has an assortment of deals.

Sizzix is giving a head start to the shopping festivities.

Creativelive has up to 50% off sitewide for their Black Friday sale starting Nov. 22.

Starting Nov. 23, get $20 off Go! Qube and $150 off Go! Big.

Cricut Maker starts at $349 through Nov. 25. Starting Nov. 23, get up to 80% off supplies plus get $10 digital when you spend $50. Use code FREESHIP49 to get free shipping on $49+ orders.

Starting at 9pm EST on Sunday through Monday, Joann has $209.99 The Warm Company Queen Batting Rolls$349.99 Cricut Maker, and up to 40% off sewing furniture.

JOANN Stores

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