Friday Free Quilt Patterns: Pretty in Paisley Queen Size Quilt

Patterson Kathy 70px Friday Free Quilt Patterns: Pretty in Paisley Queen Size QuiltMaking a queen size quilt can be a very time-consuming effort. And it’s an effort most quilters enjoy, especially for those heritage quilts we hope to pass on from generation to generation.

But what about when you simply want to update a bedroom, show off sumptuous new fabrics, or get a gift quilt ready to go? If you’re looking for a truly quick queen size quilt pattern, this week’s Friday Freebie is for you! Here’s Pretty in Paisley, an upsize of a quilt designed by Metropolitan Quilt for the June/July 2015 issue of McCall’s Quick Quilts:

Pretty in Paisley WB FLAT 475px Friday Free Quilt Patterns: Pretty in Paisley Queen Size Quilt

The queen size version of the Pretty in Paisley quilt design finishes 90 1/2″ x 102 1/2″.

The version of this quilt in the magazine finishes 54 1/2″ x 72 1/2″, a nice snuggly lap size quilt pattern (a limited number of kits are available). Both patterns are super simple Pretty in Paisley 300px Friday Free Quilt Patterns: Pretty in Paisley Queen Size Quiltto piece…half-square triangle units make up the entire quilt top. Careful fabric arrangement creates the zigzag look, and cool trendy fabrics set a modern theme. The pattern would also look wonderful made with more traditional fabrics. Just be careful to vary color/value/scale of the prints to set the zigzags off from each other.

Download the FREE Pretty in Paisley queen size quilt pattern now…it’s a Friday FREEbie.

Have you missed any of our previous Friday Freebies? Click here to find them all!

 

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Hot Off the Press: McCall’s Quick Quilts June/July 2015!

April showers may be tapping against your windows, but the June/July 2015 issue of McCall’s Quick Quilts is on its way to subscriber mailboxes and local quilt shops right now! Get ready for super summer quilts with this fun magazine loaded with fast, easy quilt patterns perfect for late spring/early summer stitching.

Cover 500px Hot Off the Press: McCalls Quick Quilts June/July 2015!This issue is so dynamic, I thought I’d make a little video to show off some of the coolest projects inside. Click the image below to take a peek!

Video Hot Off the Press: McCalls Quick Quilts June/July 2015!And those are just some of the 13 exciting quilt patterns in this issue; preview all the quilts here! Don’t forget to download all of this issue’s FREE web bonus quilt patterns for your personal pattern library.

This issue is available on newsstands no later than May 5, and may also be purchased online in print or instant digital download format now at our Quilt and Sew Shop. Grab your copy and your sticky notes and find your next quilting project (or 2 or 3) right here!

Subscription Information
Digital subscribers can access this issue beginning April 24.
Print subscription issues are arriving at doorsteps now.
Not a print or digital subscriber yet? Click here for information!

And here’s where you can find products featured in this issue:


fabric Hot Off the Press: McCalls Quick Quilts June/July 2015!Storage Hot Off the Press: McCalls Quick Quilts June/July 2015!Thangles Hot Off the Press: McCalls Quick Quilts June/July 2015!book Hot Off the Press: McCalls Quick Quilts June/July 2015!

stripe tote Hot Off the Press: McCalls Quick Quilts June/July 2015!box Hot Off the Press: McCalls Quick Quilts June/July 2015!Cultural Hot Off the Press: McCalls Quick Quilts June/July 2015!orbit tote Hot Off the Press: McCalls Quick Quilts June/July 2015!

 

 

 

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Tuesday Tutorials: Tying a Quilt by Machine

Patterson Kathy 70px Tuesday Tutorials: Tying a Quilt by MachineHave you ever quilted a project by hand-tying the top, batting, and backing layers together with yarn, floss, or ribbon, spaced evenly across the quilt? If so, you know that quilting even a small project by hand-tying or tacking can be hard on the body. Sore hands and fingers are a common problem, and the legs and knees also take a beating if you’re using the floor as your work surface.

Yarn Tuesday Tutorials: Tying a Quilt by Machine

Yarn tacking can be done by machine, quickly and easily.

McCall’s Quilting associate editor Sherri Bain Driver to the rescue! Sherri taped a video demonstrating two different ways to tack or tie a quilt all by machine. Not only do you get durable, beautiful results, you can also add creative touches to your tacking and save wear and tear on your hands and knees. Genius!

Leaf Tuesday Tutorials: Tying a Quilt by Machine

Tacking with one of your machine’s decorative motifs adds detail to your quilting.

Watch Sherri’s short and eye-opening FREE video now, and be ready to tie-quilt your next project. Just another great technique to have in your quilt making toolbox!

Remember, you can watch any of our free MQU how-to-quilt video lessons any time day or night—click here to see the full selection.

And don’t miss any of our Tuesday Tutorials—access them all right here.

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Be Creative! Quilt Challenge Begins

Patterson Kathy 70px Be Creative! Quilt Challenge BeginsDo you like a challenge? Especially a quilting challenge? If so, you’re going to love the news I have for you today. Now through November 1, 2015, McCall’s Quilting and our sister magazines Quilters Newsletter and Quiltmaker are sponsoring what we’re calling the Be Creative! Quilt Challenge, and you can enter for a chance to win wonderful prizes.

GTCC Be Creative! Quilt Challenge BeginsHere’s how it works: Get your Be Creative! bundle of Windham Fabrics by noted designer Lotta Jansdotter from our online shop. Add up to 3 fabrics of your own choosing, and design and make a quilt showcasing your creative talents. Enter the contest online or by mail, and you may win a gift certificate, books, magazine subscriptions, all kinds of great prizes.

We know we’re going to see some amazing quilts come out of this challenge, so we’re also planning to exhibit the winning and finalist quilts at Original Sewing and Quilt Expos in 2016…your quilt may tour the country in the company of many more amazing works of quilting art. Imagine your quilt in a national show!

From personal experience I can tell you that a formal challenge like this can bring out the best in your designing abilities. When I have fixed parameters in which to work, it challenges me to be creative, while channeling my ideas and providing lots of inspiration. This is going to be fun!

For complete contest rules and more information, visit the Be Creative! page on our website. And get your fabric bundle while supplies last…limited quantities are available. Even if you’re not into contests, with 4 1/2 yards of fabulous fabrics these bundles are a super value for another project or just building your stash.

Good luck to all who enter, and may the best designers win!

 

 

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Friday Free Quilt Patterns: Take a Spin Baby Quilt

Patterson Kathy 70px Friday Free Quilt Patterns: Take a Spin Baby QuiltBaby quilt patterns are always in demand, and this week’s Friday Freebie is a really special one. Did you know that research suggests that bright colors are more stimulating to baby’s development than the usual pastel nursery colors? Give that special baby a boost in the right direction with this bright, fun, free baby quilt pattern, Take a Spin by Kathy Flowers!

Take a Spin Baby Quilt FLAT 450px Friday Free Quilt Patterns: Take a Spin Baby Quilt

The free Take a Spin baby quilt pattern finishes 45 1/2″ square.

Take a Spin 300p Friday Free Quilt Patterns: Take a Spin Baby Quilt

This lap size version of Take a Spin is patterned in the May/June 2015 issue of McCall’s Quilting. Instant digital pattern is also available.

Isn’t it cute? It reminds me of those brightly-colored pinwheels we used to play with as kids. Kathy’s original design is for a lap quilt size (kits are available), and we liked it so much we downsized it for baby as well. Easy baby quilt patterns are great to keep handy in your personal library. You never know when a family member, friend, or neighbor will surprise you with a big announcement!

Download the FREE Take a Spin baby quilt pattern now…it’s a Friday FREEbie.

Have you missed any of our previous Friday Freebies? Click here to find them all!

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Moonlit Reflections: A Visit with Kate Colleran

Colleran Kate 200 Moonlit Reflections: A Visit with Kate ColleranMeet guest blogger, quilt designer, and author Kate Colleran of Seams Like a Dream Quilt Designs. Read on and don’t miss the fabric giveaway contest at the bottom of the article.

Hi! I was so happy when McCalls’s Quilting asked me to be a guest blogger; of course I said YES! I’ve been quilting since I was a teenager. It started with a baby quilt I made for a cousin’s baby and I have not stopped since. Though I do admit to slowing down at times, especially when the kids were little and I was working full time as nurse.

Three years ago when I moved to Colorado from my hometown in Connecticut, I had no idea what the future might hold. I knew I was going to take a break from nursing and see what I could do with this quilt business that I had started a few years back with my friend Elizabeth. Now we have a  book coming out with C&T Publishing in May, I teach an online class at Craftsy called 3 Blocks, 30 Quilts and I am designing quilts for fabric companies and magazines, including McCall’s Quilting and McCall’s Quick Quilts.

For the May/June 2015 issue of McCall’s Quilting, I designed a quilt using fabric from a line by Timeless Treasures called Imperial Garden. The fabric has just a wonderful feel in addition to being beautiful. The design started with the panel; I had not used a panel before in my quilts. But I like a challenge!

Do you ever wonder about the inspiration behind a design? As I was looking at the fabrics, I was thinking about pagodas and shoji screens. The clean lines, the architecture of these iconic Asian symbols seemed to be the perfect inspiration for my design. I had been to the Japanese Garden in Portland a couple of years ago and the fabric reminded me of the flowers and beautiful buildings and bridges there. I wanted the design to be symmetrical so the panel was put front and center and I built the other elements around it. The vertical rows on either side of the panel were built as overlapping squares with small contrast squares to provide depth and interest. The top and bottom rows finish the framework around the panel and the navy background allows the fabrics to really stand out.

Flat 400 Moonlit Reflections: A Visit with Kate Colleran

Moonlit Reflections by Kate Colleran; quilt kits are available!

Moonlit Reflections Marking Border 450 Moonlit Reflections: A Visit with Kate Colleran

Be careful when marking your mitered border!

The quilt goes together fairly easily, though be careful when adding the mitered borders. Have you done miters before? They really aren’t hard, one just needs to pay attention. McCall’s Quilting has included great directions in the magazine; I will admit that I drew my lines wrong on the first border. Do you know what happens when you draw a 60 degree line instead of the 45 degree line that follows the angled edge of the quilt? I will tell you- you get a border with a lump in it!

Styled 500 Moonlit Reflections: A Visit with Kate ColleranI hope you have a great time making your Moonlit Reflections quilt. I would love for you to come visit me at my blog; we are having a book blog tour starting April 21st with giveaways and other fun stuff! The book is called Smash Your Precut Stash (C&T Publishing). I bet you have a precut or two in your stash that maybe you were waiting for just the right project. We’ve got you covered! You can also see the patterns from my pattern company, Seams Like a Dream Quilt Designs.

Kate

Timeless 350 Moonlit Reflections: A Visit with Kate ColleranThanks, Kate! And thanks to the folks at Timeless Treasures Fabrics, we are giving away 4 fun fat quarter packs from assorted fabric collections. Leave a comment below before midnight May 14, 2015 and you’ll be entered into our random drawing. Four names will be drawn on May 15 and notified by email. This contest is open to US and Canadian residents, excluding Quebec.

If you don’t already have a copy of our May/June issue, you can order print and digital magazines in our online shop. The Moonlit Reflections quilt pattern is also available separately as an instant digital download. And there are still a few Moonlit Reflections quilt kits and backing fabric packs available, too!

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Tuesday Tutorials: Setting Blocks On Point

Patterson Kathy 70px Tuesday Tutorials: Setting Blocks On PointWe often get questions from quilters about diagonal quilt settings, or setting quilt blocks on point. What size triangles do I need for the sides and corners? In what order do I sew things together? How do I line up the blocks with the triangles before sewing them together?

quilt top 400 Tuesday Tutorials: Setting Blocks On Point

A typical on-point or diagonal setting

 

That’s why we developed a special FREE download lesson you can print out and keep handy for any time you want to set quilt blocks on point in a quilt design. The lesson includes very detailed step-by-step photos that walk you through the entire process.

 

 

 

 

Setting blocks on point really isn’t much different from sewing them together in horizontal or vertical rows, once you see it done step by step! And it multiplies the design opportunities immensely…just look at these beautiful examples:

Argyle FLAT 250px Tuesday Tutorials: Setting Blocks On Point

QMK151 Tuesday Tutorials: Setting Blocks On Point

 

The free download also includes a handy chart for planning the size of diagonal-set quilts and figuring the size of setting triangles:

Chart Tuesday Tutorials: Setting Blocks On Point

Download this super-helpful lesson now…it’s a Tuesday Tutorial. And don’t miss any of our Tuesday Tutorials—access them all right here!

Check out these tools for additional help with creating diagonal quilt settings:
Easy Diagonal Sets Ruler 150x150 Tuesday Tutorials: Setting Blocks On Point   QNNOPR 150x150 Tuesday Tutorials: Setting Blocks On PointLQN2024 150x150 Tuesday Tutorials: Setting Blocks On Point

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Friday Free Quilt Patterns: Amethyst Stars

Patterson Kathy 70px Friday Free Quilt Patterns: Amethyst StarsThere is something so spring-like about the color purple. Crocus, hyacinths, tulips, violets, and more are sprinkling so many shades of lavender and purple all around the landscape here in the eastern US…it’s spring at last! So let’s celebrate spring’s beauty with this week’s Friday Freebie, Amethyst Stars by Penny Barnes.

Amethyst Friday Free Quilt Patterns: Amethyst Stars

This queen size version of Amethyst Stars is patterned in the May/June 2015 issue of McCall’s Quilting. Instant digital pattern is also available.

 

The Friday Free quilt pattern is for the lap size version of Penny’s design. With just 5 Kona® Cotton Solids by Robert Kaufman Fabrics the design would also be easy to adapt to other color schemes. Our pattern gives templates for the “peaky and spike” units, but if you prefer to use an acrylic tool and rotary cut those patches, the Tri-Recs™ tool can speed your work.


Download the FREE Amethyst Stars lap quilt pattern now…it’s a Friday FREEbie.

Have you missed any of our previous Friday Freebies? Click here to find them all!

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Candy Box: A Visit with Diane Nagle

Meet guest blogger, quilt designer, and teacher Diane Nagle of Peddlecar Quilts. Read on and don’t miss the fabulous fabric giveaway contest at the bottom of the article.

Diane Candy Box: A Visit with Diane Nagle

One of my favorite design techniques is to make a quilt using blocks that form a secondary pattern. Sometimes something as simple as adding setting triangles to an on-point design that continue elements of the blocks inside the quilt can really transform a quilt’s appearance.

 

Candy Box FLAT 500px Candy Box: A Visit with Diane Nagle

 

In my Candy Box quilt (patterned in the May/June 2015 issue of McCall’s Quilting), blocks are set horizontally, and using two different blocks that continue a line or unit makes the overall appearance seem to blend into a new image of a block that really is not there when separated from each other.

Candy Box 425px Candy Box: A Visit with Diane Nagle

 

This design trick can also give you so many more options because you are not limited to seeing just what is in one quilt block. The hexagon blocks in Candy Box appear to have a frame on point around them, which gives the appearance of an on-point quilt construction when it is actually alternating blocks sewn in horizontal rows. That also means it is a lot easier to sew together than meets the eye!

Because I design quilts for fabric companies, I usually work within a line of fabric, so they all end up blending and working well together. But don’t hesitate to try a scrappy look with your fabric stash or fabrics that speak to you. Keep in mind a variety of values and print scale, and keep the style or “feel” of the fabrics similar so they work well with each other. Once in a while it’s a good idea to throw in a surprise color or print (used sparingly) to give the quilt a little zing. Use a design wall as you work, to give yourself a way to spot placement of colors and fabric prints throughout the quilt and keep it balanced when you are doing a scrappy effect. Candy Box has a scrappy look within the same line simply because so many prints were available and I used them all! Many times a solid background (in any color that coordinates) will give the eye a place to rest and keep your quilt from looking too busy and running together. The white background here helps to break up and enhance the beautiful fabrics, from the Bon Bon Bebe collection by Robyn Pandolph for RJR Fabrics.

I design using EQ7, which I have been using since EQ5 was available. I have taught classes on the software because its possibilities are so endless and will advance a person’s ability to create new concepts in design. I find it easy to use,  and a much faster way to rework your stages of a quilt design with quick changes at the click of a tool. Fabrics can instantly be switched around, design elements in a block can be changed, and sizes can be altered immediately. I can’t wait to see what EQ may do next in future versions to make quilt design continue to evolve. And the best part is, you can save your designs and go back to them later to re-tweak and recreate the design with new fabrics, colors, and totally change the whole look. Add a sashing, change the number of rows, or alter one of the blocks.  You will amaze yourself!

Diane

Nagle fabric 300px Candy Box: A Visit with Diane NagleGreat design tips, Diane! And thanks to the folks at RJR Fabrics, we are giving away 3 luscious, large fat quarter packs of the Bon Bon Bebe collection by Robyn Pandolph! Leave a comment below before midnight May 7, 2015 and you’ll be entered into our random drawing. Three names will be drawn on May 8 and notified by email. This contest is open to US and Canadian residents, excluding Quebec.

If you don’t already have a copy of our May/June issue, you can order print and digital magazines in our online shop. The Candy Box quilt pattern is also available separately as an instant digital download. And there are still a few Candy Box quilt kits and backing fabric packs available, too!

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Tuesday Tutorials: Aligning Sashing Strips

Patterson Kathy 70px Tuesday Tutorials: Aligning Sashing StripsAdding sashing between quilt blocks and block rows can dramatically change the look of a quilt top. When separation and definition between blocks is your goal, sashing is a traditional, useful technique to have in your bag of tricks.

There are a few tips for aligning sashing strips that will make this process easier and also lead to much nicer results when adding sashing. After all, off-kilter sashing distracts the viewer’s eye and can even cause a slight sense of vertigo, and no one wants that! Here’s a foolproof technique for making sashing strips line up perfectly:

A Tuesday Tutorials: Aligning Sashing Strips

Follow your quilt pattern’s instructions for sewing blocks (represented by the blue squares) and short vertical sashing strips into rows. Stitch 1 long horizontal sashing strip to a block row, and trim ends of strip even with the row (if applicable). Press well.

B Tuesday Tutorials: Aligning Sashing Strips

Fold the long sashing strip up onto block row. Pinning only through long sashing strip, insert pins at raw edge to mark seam lines of each short sashing strip.

C Tuesday Tutorials: Aligning Sashing Strips

Open the long sashing strip.

D Tuesday Tutorials: Aligning Sashing Strips

With right sides together, position next block row on long sashing strip, aligning seams with pins. Re-pin through both layers. Sew seam.

E Tuesday Tutorials: Aligning Sashing StripsOpen and press. Look how nicely those vertical sashing strips line up with each other! Just a little pin-marking makes such a big difference, and you’ll never again have the nasty surprise of sashing strips that don’t line up.

Don’t miss any of our Tuesday Tutorials—access them all right here!

Practice your sashing alignment skills with any of these fun quilt patterns:

DPQQP150309 Tuesday Tutorials: Aligning Sashing StripsDPQQP150306 Tuesday Tutorials: Aligning Sashing StripsQQK14110 Tuesday Tutorials: Aligning Sashing Strips

 

 

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