Workshop Wednesday: Two Quilt-as-You-Go Methods

Not only are quilt-as-you-go techniques great for making projects quickly, they’re perfectly suited for anyone who’s ever wondered how to stuff a large quilt sandwich through the throat of a domestic sewing machine to be quilted.

With quilt-as-you-go (QAYG), you do the quilting in smaller chunks, then join the chunks, or rather, blocks at the end of the process. You can also combine QAYG with a string-piecing approach, which is particularly well suited for small home-dec projects made with strips.

Here are some tutorials on those two main techniques and some different projects you can make with them.

Joining Quilted Blocks

Karen Charles joined me for this episode of “Quilters Newsletter TV: The Quilters’ Community” to demonstrate her basic tips for successful QAYG.

In an episode of “My First Quilt,” Sara Gallegos demonstrated how to use QAYG to make Groovy, a reversible quilt designed by our own Lori Baker. Click here to view the full episode for free on QNNtv.com.

Running in Circles  is made with templates to create a cathedral windows-style pattern, as shown in this “Quilting Quickly” video.

QAYG methods are also great for making rag quilts, as shown in this “Sew Easy” video with Jean Nolte and Colleen Tauke.

Quilt-and-Flip Method

This method reminds me of string piecing, the big difference being that you’ve already got your batting in place. As you’ll see, it’s a good method to use when you’re working with strips of fabric.

Mary Fons and guest Heather Kinion demonstrate this QAYG method in this “Quilty” video. As they point out, it’s also a great way to clear out your scrap batting and fabrics and remedies the problem of quilting a large quilt on a home machine.

This “Quilting Quickly” tutorial demonstrates a similar QAYG technique to make the Hocus Pocus table runner.

You can also use this QAYG technique to make a set of Christmas Gathering placemats  using precut 2½” strips, as shown in this “Quilting Quickly” video.

Joy 200 193x300 Workshop Wednesday: Two Quilt as You Go Methods

Joy wall hanging by ZJ Humbach

For more holiday décor, check out the episode of “My First Quilt” in which Sara Gallegos demonstrates this QAYG method to make the Ho Ho Ho Christmas wall hanging designed by ZJ Humbach. The preview video is below; click here to view the full episode for free on QNNtv.com. The full pattern for Ho Ho Ho is included in Quilters Newsletter’s Best Christmas Quilts 2013 special issue, and its companion pattern, Joy, is in the Best Christmas Quilts 2014 issue. Both full issues are currently available as digital downloads for only $2.00 each, which is 80% off the cover price (prices subject to change).

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Berries & Cream quilted throw pillow

The pattern for the Berries & Cream quilted throw pillow is in the February/March 2015 issue of McCall’s Quick Quilts, and it includes step-by-step photos showing the QAYG technique used to make it. (I’ve been making a number of quilted pillow shams the past couple of years, and I think I need to add one of these to my to-make list.) Both the print and digital download editions of this issue are currently on sale for $1.80 each, which is a great deal for 14 full patterns (prices subject to change).

With any QAYG technique, you do need to plan ahead, and the technique may not work for every quilt pattern. But for certain quilts it’s certainly the way to go, and you’ll have a project checked off your list before you know it.

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Design Wall Tuesday – Auditioning fabrics and Log Cabin Quilts

Hello! Welcome to Design Wall Tuesday. We’re sliding into shorter days and cooler temperatures—perfect quilting weather! Here’s what a few of the editors at McCall’s Quilting and Quiltmaker have been working on:


From Associate Editor, Gigi Khalsa:

Gigi 225px 150x150 Design Wall Tuesday – Auditioning fabrics and Log Cabin Quilts

Over the weekend I got started on the Freeform Block of the Month. It’s my first BOM and I really don’t want to fall behind, so I made sure to get all the cutting done, as well as quite a bit of sewing. Keep up with my progress on the project at the Quiltmaker blog; I’ll be posting every month until its done! auditioning fabrics and log cabin quilts Gigi DWT Design Wall Tuesday – Auditioning fabrics and Log Cabin Quilts


From Associate Editor, Mary Kate Karr-Petras:

Karr Petras Mary Kate 150x150 Design Wall Tuesday – Auditioning fabrics and Log Cabin Quilts

I finished my Log Cabin throw quilt top last week! With only nine 20″ x 20″ blocks made mostly with precut jelly roll strips, it came together really quickly. I’m happy with it, and foresee a number of Log Cabin variations in my quilting future. You can read more about my process here, including how I resorted to the low-tech design tools (paper and crayons) I had at home to plan my fabric placement.

auditioning fabrics and log cabin quilts Mary Kate DWT Design Wall Tuesday – Auditioning fabrics and Log Cabin Quilts


From Acquisitions Editor, Lori Baker:

Lori Pink Scarf 150x150 Design Wall Tuesday – Auditioning fabrics and Log Cabin Quilts

I had fun this weekend making a color option for an upcoming issue of Quiltmaker. I made a block with a beautiful blue and magenta iridescent silk dupioni and black cotton velvet. The bulk of the black was a little hard to deal with but the finished project is really pretty. And between the velvet shedding and the silk raveling, my lint roller was a good tool to have close by.

auditioning fabrics and log cabin quilts Lori DWT Design Wall Tuesday – Auditioning fabrics and Log Cabin Quilts


From Content Director, Carolyn Beam:

Beam Carolyn 150x150 Design Wall Tuesday – Auditioning fabrics and Log Cabin Quilts

Instead of sewing this past weekend, I got to visit with a quilt guild on the western slopes of Colorado—the Friendship Quilters of Colorado. What a lovely group of quilters with inspiring show and tell!

Please join us next week to see what we’ve been up to!

In stitches,
Carolyn
Content Director
McCall’s Quilting, McCall’s Quick Quilts and Quiltmaker

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I Love This Quilt: Silhouette Stars

I Love this Quilt!

Giving a published McCall’s Quilting pattern a different spin

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McCall’s Quilting January/February 2015

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Silhouette Stars, designed by Gerri Robertson

Russek Erin I Love This Quilt: Silhouette Stars

Erin Russek

Erin Russek, Associate Editor

I love finding ways to use fat quarter bundles to make quilts. I think that’s because I am looking for a way to justify buying them! My latest favorite bundle is Victoria by 3 Sisters for Moda Fabrics. Once I saw this bundle I just knew I needed to find a pattern for it and Silhouette Stars, designed by Gerri Robinson, featured in McCall’s Quilting  January/February 2015 is the perfect choice!

i love this quilt silhouette stars Moda Victoria 3 Sisters Fabric 1024x625 I Love This Quilt: Silhouette Stars

Since I am smitten with all the prints in this collection, I have decided to use the lighter prints for the center stars in the blocks instead of the background fabric. I’m also adding a couple of borders so it will be large enough for my bed. It’s pretty fun to pair up the fabrics! I figure with careful cutting I will be able to make 2 blocks from each pair.

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My sample block

I can’t wait to go home and sew!

Go to the Editor’s Blog on November 2nd
to see how my version of Silhouette Stars is coming along.

To see more patterns designed by Gerri Robinson for McCall’s Quilting, click here.

I Love This Quilt is a regular feature of McCall’s Quilting magazine. Don’t miss an I Love This Quilt remake. Click here to subscribe to McCall’s Quilting.

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Workshop Wednesday: Stitch & Flip Tips

Shapes and units that once were only possible by template piecing are now often achieved through stitch-and-flip techniques. Stitch-and-flip, sometimes called quick-corner or fast-corner piecing, is a distinctly modern technique: it’s tailor-made for rotary cutting, it’s meant to simplify your cutting and piecing, but it also assumes you have access to more fabric than you actually need as it creates a certain amount of waste (though that doesn’t always have to be the case, as we’ll see later).

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Dreamcatcher by Denise Russart

For a great example of a stitch-and-flip pattern that would have been made with templates only 20 years ago, take a look at Dreamcatcher by Denise Russart, which is included in the September/October 2017 issue of McCall’s Quilting. There is not a single template or triangle in the cutting list, only squares and rectangles, making this pattern—and many like it—accessible to confident beginners with a good grasp of basic quiltmaking skills.

If you’re new to the stitch-and-flip technique, well, it’s done exactly the way it sounds: you stitch a patch across the diagonal to a larger patch, trim the excess, then flip the smaller patch open to take the place of the fabric you trimmed from the larger patch. Most of the time, it’s used to end up with a triangle joined to a non-triangular shape.

Figuring out how big to cut your patches is easy with stitch-and-flip. With this technique you stitch directly corner to corner of your small patch, not 1/4″ away from the diagonal such as when making fast triangle-squares or half-square triangle units. Therefore, you only need to add standard ½” seam allowances to the finished dimension of the short side of the triangle you’ll end up with to find what size to cut the patch you’ll flip.

Below are videos showing various uses of stitch-and-flip units followed by patterns made with those units so you can see the variety of designs that can be created with the technique. And be sure to scroll to the bottom to learn about a great tip for making stitch-and-flip units even more quickly.

To start with, “My First Quilt” host Sara Gallegos did an entire episode covering how to stitch-and-flip. The full episode is available to view for free on QNNtv.com.

 

The focus of this “Quiltmaker’s Lessons in Creativity” video with Jenny Kae Parks is on making a square-in-square using stitch-and-flip. With large square-in-squares you’ll save a lot of fabric by cutting triangles and joining them to the sides of a smaller square, but with small units, stitch-and-flip certainly makes things easier.

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A Walk in the Fall

For a new pattern that includes square-in-square units made with stitch-and-flip, check out A Walk in the Fall from the September/October 2017 issue of Quiltmaker.

 

In this “Quiltmaker’s Block Network” video, Shayla Wolf demonstrates a snowball block. It’s similar to a square-in-square except the corner triangles don’t meet in the middle of the square’s raw edges. Using stitch-and-flip saves you from having to join triangles to the sides of an octagon.

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My Only Sunshine by Carolyn Beam

For an adorable crib quilt that’s made with snowball blocks,  nine-patch blocks and stitch-and-flip setting triangles, take a look at My Only Sunshine by Carolyn Beam. This scrappy, charm square-friendly pattern is included in the McCall’s Quick Quilts August/September 2017 issue.

 

In a different “Quiltmaker’s Lessons in Creativity” video, Jenny Kae shows how to make flying geese units using stitch-and-flip (as opposed to the no-waste fast flying geese technique or the traditional method of cutting and joining triangles).

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Very Merry by Diane Harris

The scrappy star points in Very Merry by Diane Harris are similar to flying geese except that they are more widely spaced and don’t meet in the middle of the unit, which means they are perfect for using stitch-and-flip. You can find the pattern in the October/November 2017 issue of McCall’s Quick Quilts.

 

In this “Quilty” Blocks-a-Go-Go episode, Marianne Fons joins daughter Mary to demonstrate the 21st Century Snail block, which entails joining squares to ends of rectangles to make units. Marianne and Mary also share a tip for putting those trimmed triangles to use to eliminate fabric waste.

Colleen Tauke demonstrates smaller rectangular stitch-and-flip units (she calls it the diagonal seams technique) to create the star points in the Four-Patch Star Quilt in this “Quilting Quickly” tutorial.

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Maria “Tavy” Umhey’s Apple Pie

Maria “Tavy” Umhey takes advantage of rectangular stitch-and-flip units to create the blue octagons in Apple Pie. This traditional pattern is in McCall’s Quilting July/August 2017 issue.

 

 

 

Here are a couple of additional patterns that take full advantage of the ease offered by stitch-and-flip techniques.

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Skittles by Melissa Corry

Skittles by Melissa Corry is a terrific example of creating unusual and even wonky-looking shapes using a combination of square-in-square and rectangular stitch-and-flip units. The pattern was included in the McCall’s Quick Quilts August/September 2017 issue. (It’s also perfect for using a layer cake or other package of precut 10” squares, so it’s a win-win on the fast-and-easy front).

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Punkin’ Patch by Bonnie Hunter

All of the techniques and patterns shown above require a certain amount of accuracy in terms of cutting patches and stitching corner to corner. Stitch-and-flip can also be used more improvisationally, though, such as for making the pumpkin stems in Punkin’ Patch by Bonnie Hunter.

The pattern includes step-by-step photos; you can find it in the September/October 2017 issue of Quiltmaker.

 

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No-mark stitch-and-flip technique

So now that you’re familiar with this easy technique and the different types of units and blocks you can make with it, how about making them even more quickly? A nifty no-mark technique from Donna Ramos was shared on the Quiltmaker blog over five years ago and has remained popular for good reason. Click here to learn all about it.

We certainly have nothing against the quiltmaking techniques of days gone by, but when given a choice between making templates versus creating a few extra scraps by using stitch-and-flip techniques, we’re pretty much always going to choose stitch-and-flip. It’s an innovation that became popular for good reason and a technique that’s here to stay.

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Design Wall Tuesday – Tips for Sewing Strips

Hi! Welcome to Design Wall Tuesday! It was a rainy weekend in Colorado—perfect weather for staying in and doing some sewing. Here’s what the editors of McCall’s Quilting and Quiltmaker magazines have been up to.


From Content Director, Carolyn Beam:

Beam Carolyn 150x150 Design Wall Tuesday – Tips for Sewing Strips

design wall tuesday tips for sewing strips Carolyn DWT1 150x150 Design Wall Tuesday – Tips for Sewing StripsI had hoped to get my Jelly Roll quilt top, Vintner’s Bouquet from Quick Quilts Oct/Nov ’17 issue, that I started on Naional Sew a Jelly Roll Day finished, but I ended up getting only about 2/3 of it sewn. I love the way it’s coming together (right)!

I wanted to share a tip that’s been really helpful for me when I’m sewing these strips together. Because of the way the patches in each vertical row are cut, there are no seams to match when sewing the rows together. When I’m pressing each row after it’s sewn, I find the centers of some of the patches and press lightly. Then when I’m sewing the rows together, I can match the folds. The folds sometimes line up with a seam as well.

design wall tuesday tips for sewing strips Carolyn DWT2 300x225 Design Wall Tuesday – Tips for Sewing Strips design wall tuesday tips for sewing strips Carolyn DWT3 300x225 Design Wall Tuesday – Tips for Sewing Strips

design wall tuesday tips for sewing strips Carolyn DWT4 150x150 Design Wall Tuesday – Tips for Sewing StripsI also played around with another Charm Square pattern and got a few blocks sewn. This one is easy and really fast.


From Acquisitions Editor, Lori Baker:

Lori Pink Scarf 150x150 Design Wall Tuesday – Tips for Sewing Strips

design wall tuesday tips for sewing strips Lori DWT 300x225 Design Wall Tuesday – Tips for Sewing StripsI spent a while this weekend practicing pebbles – my all-time least favorite free-motion quilting design. I tend to get compulsive and instead of pebbles, I quilt grains of sand. These didn’t come out too bad. Most of them are pea-size and that works.


From Associate Editor, Mary Kate Karr-Petras:

Karr Petras Mary Kate 150x150 Design Wall Tuesday – Tips for Sewing Strips

design wall tuesday tips for sewing strips Mary Kate DWT 300x225 Design Wall Tuesday – Tips for Sewing StripsI decided to keep working on the Log Cabin quilt I started on National Sew a Jelly Roll Day using two Project Red jelly rolls from Moda since I had all the fabric out. All of my patches are cut and organized and I’m chain piecing the blocks. I figure I’m about 3 hours away from a completed 60″ x 60″ quilt top at this point–not too shabby!


From Associate Editor, Anissa Arnold:

ANISSA 1 150x150 Design Wall Tuesday – Tips for Sewing Stripsdesign wall tuesday tips for sewing strips Anissa DWT 300x225 Design Wall Tuesday – Tips for Sewing StripsThis past weekend I made some progress on my Urban Owls quilt, pattern by Wendy Williams. I started this quilt last year and then stalled out on it when I began some BOMs. However, this weekend I started making the next blocks – 2 house blocks. Houses are now pieced but each one has a little hand appliquéd animal on its roof that still needs to be sewn. I still have hopes of finishing the top of the quilt by the end of this year.


See you next week when we share more weekend sewing.

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PIGS: A Precious Not-so-precious Project

I’ve gotten really frustrated lately at the number of PIGS (Projects in Grocery Sacks) that I have. I have a list on my computer and there are 36 items left on the list to finish. The top item is Orphan Blocks and there are literally dozens of those. But there are also things that aren’t on the list. I just found one this weekend. It’s like there are PIGS hiding everywhere trying to escape my notice.

Elizabeth’s Quilt

But the project I decided to finish next is this wonderful old quilt. It belongs to Elizabeth, a friend of mine. Elizabeth’s grandmother made this quilt for her. I’m sure Elizabeth’s grandmother made it to be a utility quilt – or as Mary Kate would say, a not-precious quilt – that Elizabeth could use and love. Elizabeth has loved it a whole lot. And because her grandmother made it, the quilt became precious.

a precious not so precious project Elizabeths quilt PIGS: A Precious Not so precious ProjectElizabeth’s quilt is a true scrap quilt. The fabrics include cotton, polyester, polyester double knits and velour. The quilt is tied with pink yarn. The backing fabric is folded to the front to finish the edges. The quilt is truly charming in it’s simplicity.

Some of the fabrics have been washed so many times they are sheer. Some of the seams have come undone.

The Backing is Torn

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The backing is torn

The quilt back is in shreds. Elizabeth’s frugal grandmother used an old blanket instead of batting.

The original quilt back was a Dresden plate print. I looked and looked for that fabric, wanting to honor Elizabeth’s grandmother’s vision. I didn’t ever find a Dresden plate print but I did find a Grandmother’s Flower Garden print by Robert Kaufman Fabrics that is similar enough that it will work very well. I thought about washing it multiple times to fade it but in the end, I decided the strength of the new fabric was what was important.

New Backing Fabric

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New backing fabric

The backing fabric has the green “border” printed along one selvedge so the photo is two widths of fabric sewn together. I matched the pattern so the seam is barely noticeable. After I’d stitched the two widths together, I was so pleased with how nicely they matched, I held it up and jokingly said to my husband, “Aren’t I good?” I guess I should have remembered that he doesn’t sew. He said, “What am I looking at?” It made me laugh.

Pinning the Torn Backing in Place

a precious not so precious project Pinning the Torn Back in Place 150x150 PIGS: A Precious Not so precious ProjectI pinned the torn quilt back in place so as I add the new layer of backing, I won’t have pleats and tucks in the original back. I pinned from the top so I can leave the pins in until I am ready to quilt that particular spot.

I decided to quilt it on the Grace Q’nique 14+ longarm machine that we have in our sewing studio at the office. I feel like I’m much more likely to get the back nice and smooth. The front will never be completely smooth because some of the fabrics used in the quilt shrunk and some of them didn’t.

The Backing is Loaded

a precious not so precious project The Backing is Loaded 150x150 PIGS: A Precious Not so precious ProjectI loaded the backing in the frame but decided to “float” the quilt. I’m trying to be aware of the fragile state of the old backing and some of the blocks on the front and I didn’t want to put any extra stress on them.

I decided to quilt it densely in order to add some strength and stability and extend its life as much as possible. But I also want to stay with the idea that it’s a very basic quilt. I didn’t want to be quilting feathers or pebbles or matchsticks. I finally decided to do e’s and l’s. a precious not so precious project Quilted E and L 150x150 PIGS: A Precious Not so precious ProjectIt can be a fairly dense pattern, it’s easy to do and it’s very forgiving.

I’ve mended the seams that had come apart as much as possible but some of them were a challenge.

Seam with No Fabric Left

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The fabric for the seam in the green material is gone. I just stitched a couple of extra loops when I quilted to hold everything together.

As I am quilting the quilt, I find myself stopping often to pat the quilt top and coax the fabric into place. I am able for the most part to make it lie flat or at least nearly flat.

Quilting Away

I can hardly wait to finish the quilt and give it to Elizabeth. UPDATE! I delivered the quilt to Elizabeth this weekend. She was thrilled!

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Quilting away

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Delivered!

As I finish writing this, I think perhaps there are those of you who’d like a book with the 9-patch block that Elizabeth’s grandmother used. It’s a simple block but a super way to use scraps. This book has a block for every day of the year. a precious not so precious project blockaday 216x300 PIGS: A Precious Not so precious ProjectWhat a tool for learning or ideas for your next project. Block a Day: 365 Quilting Squares for Patchwork Inspiration is available at quiltandsewshop.com in hard copy or digital format. Check it out.

Just one more thing before I go – have you seen that Keepsake Quilting has a Fabric for Life contest going on from now until the end of the year? Can you imagine? Fabric for Life?? Go here for more information.

Happy quilting!
Lori

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Quilting Legend Yoko Saito Traveling to Houston

yoko saito houson Lecien Saito 240x300 Quilting Legend Yoko Saito Traveling to Houston

Yoko Saito

Expert quiltmaking skills along with the ability to combine the subtle taupe textures and prints into breathtaking quilts are what makes Japanese quilt artist Yoko Saito a legend in the quilt world. I have admired her work for years and always look forward to seeing her quilts at major exhibits. I am in awe of the color mastery and technical skills of each and every quilt she designs and makes. Yoko Saito is standing in front of her “Around the World” quilt at Quilt Party, Ms. Saito’s quilt shop and school in Ichikawa City, Japan in 2016. This lovely quilt has over 20,000 pieces of 1 cm squares, all pieced by hand.

This year Lecien is celebrating the release of the 23rd Centenary collection Yoko Saito has designed during the 20+ years they have worked together. The collection combines prints and yarn-dyed fabrics in a style that is uniquely her own.

yoko saito houson Lecien 1 1024x900 Quilting Legend Yoko Saito Traveling to Houston

yoko saito houson Lecien 7 150x150 Quilting Legend Yoko Saito Traveling to Houston yoko saito houson Lecien 6 150x150 Quilting Legend Yoko Saito Traveling to Houston yoko saito houson Lecien 5 150x150 Quilting Legend Yoko Saito Traveling to Houston
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Along with her fabric collections and award-winning quilts, she has authored many books, including “Yoko Saito’s Japanese Taupe Color Theory – A Study Guide” and “Traditional Block Patterns” and is actively involved with Japanese magazines, television and exhibitions.

yoko saito houson Lecien 9 244x300 Quilting Legend Yoko Saito Traveling to Houston

Traditional Block Patterns

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Taupe Color Theory

For the first time in many years, Yoko Saito will be traveling to Houston, Texas for the International Quilt Market (October 28-30, 2017) and Quilt Festival (November 2-5, 2017). Along with her visit, she is teaching a sold-out workshop at Quilt Festival, and there will be a celebration of her work with a special exhibit of her quilts: Yoko Saito Through the Years – My Quilt Journey. I can’t wait to see it! If you’re traveling to Quilt Market or Quilt Festival, this is a must-see exhibit.

Lecien is sponsoring a “special pre-order campaign” for shops between September 15th and October 15th. If you’re a shopowner, go to Checker Distributors or EE Schenck for details. There will be a book signing by Yoko Saito at the Lecien booth at Quilt Market, booth #2234, Saturday, 10/28 at 11:30am. If you’re a consumer, encourage your shop to carry these luscious fabrics for you to work with.

To see how Yoko Saito’s new Centenary 23rd Collection fabrics would look in a quilt design, Acquisitions Editor Lori Baker recolored “Sophia’s Song” (click here to download the pattern), a quilt designed by Gerri Robinson for the McCall’s Quilting May/June 2011 issue.

The subtle shading and texture of the fabrics create a lovely neutral palette—so popular in the current decorating style.

Don’t miss this opportunity to see the Yoko Saito quilt exhibit and/or work with these fabrics in your own quilt creations.

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Workshop Wednesday: Joining the Ends of Your Binding

I think it’s safe to say there are two kinds of quilters in the world when it comes time to join the loose ends of a binding strip: those who measure and those who don’t.

In a previous Workshop Wednesday blog post I discussed different techniques for binding a quilt. This final part of making a quilt alone contains a few different steps that require more measuring, cutting and careful stitching right at the point when many of us are ready to just be done working on the darn thing already.

joining the ends of your binding Photo E Workshop Wednesday: Joining the Ends of Your Binding

How do you join the ends of your binding strip?

Today’s Workshop Wednesday is an in-depth look at one of these smaller steps, namely, joining the loose ends of a long binding strip after it’s been attached to the quilt.

As for me, I have become a quilter who doesn’t measure. A few years ago, when I was binding a quilt for the first time in a long time, I realized I had forgotten whatever method I’d used before to join binding ends. I looked it up in one of my older quilting books, but the method described just seemed to require too much thinking—I admit to being a quilter who just wants to finish the darn thing on occasion.

So I did what most of us do these days: I Googled it and found a less technical approach that has you figure out a good place to have the two strips meet, align them perpendicular to each other and stitch them diagonally, right sides together, and then trim the excess. This is the method I’ve been using ever since, and it works well, particularly on larger projects where I can leave myself long loose ends and at least 10″–12″ of unbound space to work with.

But for smaller projects or times when I want a more direct approach, I think I’m going to try a different method. I may even (gasp) be willing to use a ruler.

Here are a few resources for you to review to find the technique you prefer. Note that they all demonstrate how to join the ends with a diagonal seam; you can of course join the ends with a straight seam, but the binding will be bulkier in that one spot.

Let’s start with this McCall’s Quilting “Quilting 101” tutorial featuring Sherri Bain Driver, in which Sherri demonstrates the method of measuring and trimming both ends of the binding strips at a 45-degree angle before stitching. Click here for a step-by-step photo tutorial demonstrating this method.

joining the ends of your binding stitching after miter Workshop Wednesday: Joining the Ends of Your BindingFor more on this particular technique, read Lori Baker’s recent blog post about her entire binding method, including how she uses Elmer’s glue and finishes the binding by machine.


In this tutorial, Colleen Tauke demonstrates how to use the Fons & Porter Binding Tool to join binding ends by measuring first.


This “Sew Easy” video tutorial demonstrates how to bind a quilt from beginning to end, with a full demonstration of how to join the ends of the binding that falls into the “marking but not measuring” camp.


joining the ends of your binding ends10 300x216 Workshop Wednesday: Joining the Ends of Your BindingThe method described in this Quiltmaker blog tutorial is similar and falls into the “no measuring” category.  Instead of marking the wrong sides of the strip ends, however, you cut tiny notches into the seam allowances to help you line the ends up properly.


In this episode of “Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting”, Liz and Marianne demonstrated their binding technique (apparently a measure-first method). Visit QNNtv.com to view the full “Learn How to Bind Your Quilt Perfectly” episode.


Sara Gallegos devoted a full episode of “My First Quilt” to quilt binding as well. View the full episode for free on QNNtv.com.


So how do you prefer to join your binding strip ends? Do you measure-trim-stitch, or prefer to mark-stitch-trim instead? Don’t be afraid to try a couple of different methods to find the one that works for you. As with so many sewing techniques, the best method is the one that gives you the results you’re looking for.

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Design Wall Tuesday: Pumpkins, Sketch the Cat, and Wild Ducklings

Hi! It’s Carolyn Beam, Content Director for McCall’s Quilting and Quiltmaker magazines. Welcome to Design Wall Tuesday. Most of the editors of McCall’s Quilting and Quiltmaker were busy participating in Moda’s National Jelly Roll Sewalong, but a few also found time to work on other projects as well.


From Senior Graphic Designer, Genevieve Stafford Hook:
Stafford Genevieve 150x150 Design Wall Tuesday: Pumpkins, Sketch the Cat, and Wild Ducklingsdesign wall tuesday Genevieve halloween charm squares 300x245 Design Wall Tuesday: Pumpkins, Sketch the Cat, and Wild DucklingsI’m working on a set of two Halloween-themed pillows as a gift for a Halloween-obsessed friend. The mini charm squares are perfect for a quick project – great for me as I was in a sewing mood, not a cutting mood last night. The pillows will coordinate, but not match. I laid out the squares in a diagonal pattern on my portable design “wall” which makes it very easy to see what I’m doing. Chain piecing the squares makes the whole project come together in a snap.


From Acquisitions Editor, Lori Baker:

Lori Pink Scarf 150x150 Design Wall Tuesday: Pumpkins, Sketch the Cat, and Wild Ducklings

I spent much of my time this weekend working on a jelly roll quilt because of National Sew a Jelly Roll Day. Sketch seemed to be in my way much of the time. I took five pictures and he was in the middle of what I was doing in two of them.

I got four blocks done on Saturday. It’s going to be a pretty quilt.

design wall tuesday Lori 1 sketch the cat 300x290 Design Wall Tuesday: Pumpkins, Sketch the Cat, and Wild Ducklings design wall tuesday Lori 2 four quilt blocks 300x300 Design Wall Tuesday: Pumpkins, Sketch the Cat, and Wild Ducklings

From Associate Editor, Mary Kate Karr-Petras:

Karr Petras Mary Kate 150x150 Design Wall Tuesday: Pumpkins, Sketch the Cat, and Wild Ducklings

design wall tuesday Mary Kate Nancy Mahoney wild ducklings 225x300 Design Wall Tuesday: Pumpkins, Sketch the Cat, and Wild DucklingsI’m still working on free-motion quilting the color option I made for Nancy Mahoney’s Wild Ducklings pattern. I haven’t marked anything; I’m just eyeballing everything and trying to focus on making just a few things–continuous swirls, continuous figure-8′s, 4- and 8-petaled flowers, and corner-to-corner curved lines–as uniform as possible. I’m glad I’m experimenting on something a little more decorative than a test sandwich before I finally try to quilt something special. I’m excited to have gotten to this stage and by all the possibilities available by being able to successfully free-motion quilt.


Tune in next week for more quilting inspiration, tips and techniques as we share our weekend sewing.

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Hot Off the Press: McCall’s Quilting Nov/Dec ‘17

Celebrate the Holidays with 14 Festive Projects

hot off the press mccalls quilting november december cover 221x300 Hot Off the Press: McCall’s Quilting Nov/Dec ‘17

McCall’s Quilting Nov/Dec ’17 | On the cover: Stockings Galore

The spirit of the holiday season is joyful and contagious! In this issue we have all the projects you’ll need to fill your gift-giving list with handmade treasures, from mini to bed size, traditional to contemporary, pieced and appliqué. If you are in need of any holiday décor this issue also features traditional red and green designs, a charming appliqued stocking, pieced ornaments using miniature blocks and scrappy designs to bust your stash.


Christmas Cardinals

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Christmas Cardinals

Joyful red birds signal that the holidays are almost here! Through a clever combination of fussy cutting on the bias, blocks set on-point and a series of mitered borders, designer Elaine Theriault created a spectacular throw quilt that everyone hopes to find under the tree!


Stockings Galore

hot off the press mccalls quilting november december stocking 300x200 Hot Off the Press: McCall’s Quilting Nov/Dec ‘17

Stockings Galore

Three different stockings in one pattern! What a treat! The stockings are pieced and good-sized at 10″ x 17″. All are easy enough for a confident beginner. Designers Pam Boswell, Kate Colleran and Wendy Sheppard each created a stocking for this pattern.


Scarlet & Silver

hot off the press mccalls quilting november december scarlet 200x300 Hot Off the Press: McCall’s Quilting Nov/Dec ‘17

Scarlet and Silver

Scarlet and Silver by Tricia Patterson features a pretty Christmas tree panel surrounded by foundation-pieced blocks that resemble a stained glass window. It’s a quick, fun and easy project that will take your holiday decorating to the next level! The pattern also encourages creative freedom as the block units can be combined any way you like. Kits Available.


Bursting Star

hot off the press mccalls quilting november december bursting 200x300 Hot Off the Press: McCall’s Quilting Nov/Dec ‘17

Bursting Star

Scott Flanagan modified the traditional Lone Star pattern to get a modern, pixellated look with simpler construction than the design usually requires. 17 different bright, saturated colors glow against the dark background. Large blocks help this 92″ x 92″ bed quilt come together relatively quickly.


Evergreen & Gold

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Evergreen and Gold

Terrie Peterson’ lovely, large queen-size bed quilt pattern features golden stars twinkling amid evergreen trees. The big blocks are arranged to create a medallion-style composition, and the clever pieced border complements the blocks perfectly. Sleeping under the trees and stars has never been so warm and snuggly! Kits available.


Nordic Stars

hot off the press mccalls quilting november december nordic 212x300 Hot Off the Press: McCall’s Quilting Nov/Dec ‘17

Nordic Stars

Bring a sense of wintry coziness to your home this season with this beautiful table runner that celebrates all things frosty and sparkling. Bev Getschel used blue fabrics in a range of values to create the shadowed effect in a design that is easy to piece.

There’s much more inside McCall’s Quilting Nov/Dec ‘17 issue; preview all the patterns for a more complete look.

Warm Greetings,
The McCall’s Quilting Team

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