Nature’s Harmony: A Visit with Joanie Holton and Melanie Greseth

Melanie.Joanie Natures Harmony: A Visit with Joanie Holton and Melanie GresethWelcome guest bloggers, quilt designers, and authors Melanie Greseth and Joanie Holton! Their lap quilt pattern, Nature’s Harmony, is featured in the May/June 2016 issue of McCall’s Quilting magazine. Read on and don’t miss the book giveaway at the bottom of the page!

Thank you for the opportunity to share one of our new quilts with you today. This is our first time blogging and we’re excited to be here.  Working with Blend Fabrics has always been a favorite of ours, and Brenda Walton’s Flora  and Fauna collection is no different. The beautiful floral and damask prints caught our eye right away. We wanted this fabric to be the focal point of the quilt. McCall’s even has quilt kits and backing fabric available so you can make a quilt just like ours.

Inspired by the Grandmothers Flower Garden design, we enlarged the hexagon shape to highlight the  prints in the fabric.

NaturesHarmony600px Natures Harmony: A Visit with Joanie Holton and Melanie GresethWhen working with large hexagons the following tools are necessary:
• Spray starch
Template material
Marking utensil (pen or pencil)

It is very important to starch fabrics before working with them. This will ensure less  stretching when sewing rows together. Trace the template pattern to the template material. Once you have cut the hexagons out using the template it is important to mark the 1/4” points on each corner of the hexagon. This will ensure accurate corners when sewing these together.
A Natures Harmony: A Visit with Joanie Holton and Melanie GresethThe place where the lines cross is the 1/4” point.
Now sew the first row together, starting and stopping at the 1/4” points.

B Natures Harmony: A Visit with Joanie Holton and Melanie GresethOnce the vertical rows are sewn, lay out rows next to each other. With right sides together pin the straight sides together to keep their placement.

C Natures Harmony: A Visit with Joanie Holton and Melanie Greseth

Start at the 1/4” point, sew down to the next 1/4” point – leaving the needle down, raise the presser foot and pivot the work to continue down the other side of the hexagon.  Continue in this manner all the way to the end of the vertical rows.

D Natures Harmony: A Visit with Joanie Holton and Melanie Greseth

E Natures Harmony: A Visit with Joanie Holton and Melanie GresethWe recommend pressing seams open on this project to alleviate the extra bulk in the
corners. Your end result will be much smoother, and easier to quilt.

We hope you enjoy making this project as much as we enjoyed designing it together. We have a lot of fun working together to create unique ways to merge our two styles. Using modern fabrics and color palettes can be challenging at times but we love the chance to blend the modern with the traditional.

Have fun quilting and best of luck in the contest (below)! We hope you enjoy our new book, Easy Sew Quilts for Urban Living (Landauer, 2016).

Joanie Holton and Melanie Greseth

 

MAIN EasySewQuilts Natures Harmony: A Visit with Joanie Holton and Melanie GresethThanks so much, Joanie and Melanie! To celebrate the Nature’s Harmony quilt, we are giving away a copy of Easy Sew Quilts for Urban LivingLeave a comment below before midnight May 1, 2016 and you’ll be entered into our random drawing. The winning name will be drawn on May 2 and notified by email with subject line beginning YOU WON. This contest is open to US and Canadian residents, excluding Quebec.

We have a winner! Congratulations to Kathy Erickson of Dubuque, Iowa!

 

 

 

NaturesHarmonyFLAT200px Natures Harmony: A Visit with Joanie Holton and Melanie GresethIf you’d like to use your own fabrics to make a version of Joanie and Melanie’s Nature’s Harmony lap quilt and don’t already have a copy of the May/June 2016 issue of McCall’s Quilting, you can purchase print and digital copies of the magazine here or download the pattern separately from our online shop.

 

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Quilt Binding Techniques Videos – FREE!

Some of our most popular free quilting videos have to do with quilt binding. That’s because binding is one of the more challenging aspects of making a quilt. Many quilters feel unsure of how to create a binding that accents a quilt while providing a secure finish for the quilt edges. While there are lots of different methods, traditional double-fold or French fold binding is considered by many to be the standard and most desirable technique.

BindingComposite Quilt Binding Techniques Videos   FREE!Because binding a quilt in the traditional way is a multi-step process, we’ve created a free 4-video collection designed to demonstrate the entire process step by step. Award-winning quilter Sherri Bain Driver explains every aspect of the traditional binding technique, from making the binding itself, to machine sewing to the quilt (including handling those mitered quilt corners!), to joining the binding ends and hand stitching the binding to the back of the quilt. Whenever you need to refresh your memory about a particular part, you can go back and watch the corresponding video to get exactly what you need when you need it! It’s like having a quilting pro on call 24/7.

Follow this link for details on each video in the collection, including techniques demonstrated and run times. You’ll be surprised how little time it takes to learn each step in the binding process. Before long, you’ll be making beautiful quilt bindings you’ll be proud to display anywhere, even at judged and juried quilt shows.

Signing up to access this free video collection will automatically subscribe you to our free biweekly newsletter, McQ News. Of course, you can unsubscribe at any time, but we hope you’ll stick around for all our magazine previews, contests and giveaways, free quilt patterns, and more. If you’re already a member of our community, enjoy the free videos. If you’re a new member, welcome and happy quilting!

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Absolute Beginner Machine Embroidery – You Can Do It!

Patterson Kathy 225px 150x150 Absolute Beginner Machine Embroidery   You Can Do It!Research tells us that roughly 40% of quilters have an embroidery-capable sewing machine, but they don’t use the embroidery features very often. Why is that?

I have a few theories based on my interactions with quilters over the years. Some quilters purchase embroidery-capable machines thinking they’ll learn to do something with the embroidery features “someday”. Others want to use these features but aren’t sure how to get started. The threads, stabilizers, software packs, etc. make them feel overwhelmed. Still others feel confident about the process, but don’t know how to incorporate embroidery into their quilting projects. And there’s another subgroup of quilters who don’t have embroidery features on their current machine(s), but are curious about what they can do.

Sara567px Absolute Beginner Machine Embroidery   You Can Do It!

SeriesTitle578px 300x167 Absolute Beginner Machine Embroidery   You Can Do It!No matter which group of quilters you fall into, Sara Gallegos’ new online class, Absolute Beginner Machine Embroidery, can help. Starting today, a new episode will be available biweekly to take you through all the basics of the machine embroidery experience and beyond. Sara is one of my favorite online quilting instructors. Her clear information and encouraging style are great for learn-at-home students. And her projects are always full of creativity and flair. Watch the free intro video here and see what I mean!

Hoops454px 300x192 Absolute Beginner Machine Embroidery   You Can Do It!

Hoop size is a critical feature to consider.

In the first episode, Sara discusses the different types of embroidery-capable machines, and which features are important to consider when purchasing one. Even if you already own such a machine, if you’re not getting maximum usefulness and fun out of it, this video is worth watching for the information on what you can accomplish with different size hoops, etc.

ChickenFoot600px 298x300 Absolute Beginner Machine Embroidery   You Can Do It!There are some quilting projects that just call out for the addition of embroidery. For example, blocks like the Chicken Foot at left can be enhanced with any number of embroidery designs, but only if you move past your roadblocks and learn to use machine embroidery features. I hope you’ll give Sara’s classes a try and embark on a new chapter in your quilt making journey!

Kathy

 

Thanks to these generous sponsors for making Absolute Beginner Machine Embroidery possible:

BabyLockLogo Absolute Beginner Machine Embroidery   You Can Do It!MadeiraLogo Absolute Beginner Machine Embroidery   You Can Do It!

AmazingDesignsLogo Absolute Beginner Machine Embroidery   You Can Do It!

SulkyLogo Absolute Beginner Machine Embroidery   You Can Do It!

 

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Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New Projects

Welcome back to Design Wall Monday! The editors who make McCall’s QuiltingQuilters Newsletter, and Quiltmaker magazines had lots of fun stitching this weekend and we hope you did too. Here’s what a few of our team members are working on right now:

Beam Carolyn Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New ProjectsContent director Carolyn Beam writes, “It was a snowy weekend in Colorado and perfect for staying inside to sew. I worked on the feathers for my feathered star quilt. I still have many more to go!”

 

 

Carolyn1 Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New Projects

Patterson Kathy Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New ProjectsOnline editor Kathy Patterson here, and I made good progress on my applique assembly line this weekend. I have 40 of my 48 violets (those are stacks of 4 each) and all their centers made, started a few leaves to see how it would go (MUCH easier than violets!), and pulled the 12 pink fabrics I’ll need for hearts. That was the most fun of all. I started with about 25 maybes and narrowing it down to the 12 that related best to the blocks my Mom already made had me feeling very artistic!

Kathy1 Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New Projects

Harris Diane Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New ProjectsEditor Diane Volk Harris reports, “I gifted this scrappy star quilt to a favorite little cowboy this weekend, in honor of his First Communion. Although seven-year-old boys aren’t the most expressive creatures, I think he liked it. The triangle-plus block, upper left, is the family’s cattle brand. In true farm-kid fashion, he may have enjoyed the label most: it features a photo of him with his first show heifer, Lucy.”

 

lanham111 Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New Projectslanhamslabel111 Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New Projects

Khalsa Gigi Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New ProjectsEditor Gigi Khalsa finished a quilt top this weekend! “Some people might remember my remake of Nuts and Bolts from previous blog posts. I decided to put some borders on it! My version looks very different from Sandy Klop’s original quilt. It reminds me of rainbow tie dye designs. I was able to start on a pieced back for this quilt top, but I didn’t finish. Maybe next weekend I can finish it up and baste!”

 

nutsnbolts gigi Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New Projects

Baker Lori Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New ProjectsAnd from acquisitions editor Lori Baker: “I spent the whole snowy day on Sunday sewing. I completed a quilt top that I can’t show yet but here is the pieced back for that quilt. It’s ready to send to the quilter.”

 

 

Lori2 Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New Projects

Stoddard Paula Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New ProjectsManaging editor Paula Stoddard has been busy, too! “This is a project for the upcoming Quiltmaker’s Quilts From 100 Blocks issue. I loved the original block by Jennifer Dick, and had fallen in love with these fabrics and decided they would be perfect together. I love how it turned out. Now I just need some grand babies!”

 

 

Paula Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New Projects

Patterson Tricia 240px Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New ProjectsOur newest editor, Tricia Patterson, writes, “I wasn’t really too sad when, as happens every year, Colorado weather interrupted spring to bring a week-end of snow and the road conditions to keep me inside. I took advantage of the time to clean out a few closets, do a little baking, and work on a few quilting projects.

Holiday Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New ProjectsThe weather actually put me in the holiday spirit to start on a few quilting projects. Watch for the quilts that morph from these Halloween and Christmas fabrics (right) in the fall issue of Quilts from Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks.

I was fortunate to meet Carolyn McCormick last week. Carolyn is one of our designers and owner of CM Designs. I learned that Carolyn created the Add-A-Quarter Plus ruler. I’m not sure how I missed this handy tool. After hearing all about it I ordered one. While waiting for it to arrive I borrowed a 6” version from work. I used the ruler to put together a Flying Geese border for a reproduction quilt my daughter-in-law asked me to make. WOW! Is it awesome! I highly recommend the investment for foundation piecing.

Geese Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New ProjectsI also took some time to audition block patterns for fabric from the Tula Pink Elizabeth collection; one she designed for Free Spirit Fabrics. I’m working on this quilt for my oldest granddaughter who is enamored with Queen Elizabeth I. My focus blocks will be the ones featuring the queen. I plan to take patterns from Rosemary Youngs’ The Quilt Block Bible to make companion blocks for the quilt.

Elizabeth Quilt Design Wall Monday: Finished Tops and Lots of New ProjectsMaybe it’s not so bad to have a good healthy snow in April.”

That’s it from us for this Design Wall Monday. Check out our progress by reading previous Design Wall Monday blog posts here.  And visit the McCall’s Quilting Facebook page and post photos of YOUR work to join the fun and the conversation. We’ll see you there! #designwallmonday

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Welcome to the Summer Garden Quilt Along!

When a patchwork quilt pattern has “good lines” many fabrications are possible. Our new Summer Garden Quilt Along project is a perfect example of this. Designed by Gerri Robinson, it began life as a quilt named Midnight Garden, patterned in the March/April 2012 issue of McCall’s Quilting magazine:

Midnight Garden flat Welcome to the Summer Garden Quilt Along!The variety of star blocks, opportunities for different value placements, and creative pieced border that extends the patchwork outside the blocks all contribute to this quilt pattern’s interest and adaptability. It was a great candidate for a remake!

So take a look at the new Summer Garden quilt:

Summer Garden FLAT 600px Welcome to the Summer Garden Quilt Along!POW, right? Scrumptious colors, gorgeous Northcott Fabrics, and a slightly more scrappy look created by the broader color palette turn the good bones of this design into a quilt any gardener-at-heart will love.

This quilt pattern has been completely rewritten to guide you step by step through making your own version. Best of all, we’ve recorded 12 free videos with instructor Laura Stone Roberts to take you through the entire quilt making process. Laura has super tips for all the different techniques used in piecing and finishing this project. In the end, quilters will have a queen size quilt that brings a beautiful garden indoors all year long.

MQK16QA13B Welcome to the Summer Garden Quilt Along!All 12 of the video lessons in this series are available to watch free for a limited time at QNNtv.com. We’re highlighting them one per week on our Facebook page (#‎summergardenquiltalong‬), and you can watch at your own convenience. The complete pattern is available for purchase in our online shop. Of course, if you purchase a quilt kit, the complete pattern is included. Backing fabric (right) is also available.

Ready to stitch your own everlasting garden? Get your Summer Garden quilt pattern or quilt kit and watch the free videos airing now!

 

We’d like to thank our generous Summer Garden Quilt Along sponsor:

Northcott logo 160 Welcome to the Summer Garden Quilt Along!

 

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Friday Free Quilt Patterns: Frosted Candy

Patterson Kathy 225px 150x150 Friday Free Quilt Patterns: Frosted CandyThere’s something about spring that makes me think pink…and yellow…and green…and lavender! Colorful quilts are on my mind, especially colorful FREE queen size quilt patterns. Snuggle quilts for the sofa have had their season. It’s time to freshen up a bedroom or two!

If you’re ready to give a queen size bed a spring facelift, this week’s Friday Freebie is for you. Frosted Candy was designed by Gerri Robinson of Planted Seed Designs, and the sample quilt showcases fabrics by Holly Holderman for LakeHouse Dry Goods.

FrostedCandy500px Friday Free Quilt Patterns: Frosted Candy The pattern is so easy, you can have this quilt top pieced in a weekend, especially if you use strip piecing to make the four-patch units instead of piecing a patch at a time as in the pattern. Either way, it’s a truly fast quilt with a very nice secondary pattern of diagonal chains. Highlight them by repeating dominant fabrics, or keep it all scrappy like Gerri did!

Download the Frosted Candy queen size quilt pattern here…it’s this week’s Friday Freebie!

 

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

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Stars of Mine: A Visit with Audrey Wright

Wright Audrey 225px Stars of Mine: A Visit with Audrey WrightWelcome back guest blogger and quilt and fabric designer Audrey Wright of Legacy Patterns. Audrey’s lap quilt Stars of Mine is featured in the  May/June 2016 issue of McCall’s Quilting magazine. Read on and don’t miss the free patterns and fabric giveaway contest at the bottom of the page!

I am honored to be invited again to be a guest blogger for McCall’s Quilting. When I sat down to write this post I started to reflect on how I got here. I learned to sew at the age of 7 and took every Home Ec class ever offered in school. I love the feel of fabric and fibers in my hands. I made many of my clothes growing up and sewed for my kids when they were small.  My paternal Grandmother was a quilter but she lived in Kentucky and I grew up in Iowa. Time and distance did not allow us much time together. I enjoy a connection to the past and its people. I love to read stories and the diaries of the pioneers and how they settled this country. I have a great collection of vintage fabrics, tops, and quilts. At one time I even made my own lye soap! My sister says I was born 150 years too late. Growing up my maternal Grandmother worked on the family history and I loved hearing the stories and looking at pictures. My daughter has taken on the role of family historian and has worked on my husband’s family history. That history includes many veterans and was inspiration for the quilt Stars of Mine featured in the May/June 2016 McCall’s Quilting magazine.

StarsOfMine600px Stars of Mine: A Visit with Audrey WrightI designed my Redwork Meets Bluework fabric line for RJR with embroidery in mind. I am so glad that it can also be used for the Quilts of Valor quilting projects. The pattern is designed using the QOV guidelines and would make a great project for a workshop or retreat. The model of this quilt will be donated to QOV so they can present it to a veteran.

StarsOfMineFLAT1500px 300x293 Stars of Mine: A Visit with Audrey WrightIn this quilt I used two different shades of light fabrics for the background to represent an aged look. Mixing the medium blue and dark blue in the chain blocks adds dimension and movement. My favorite color is red and was the perfect color for the pinwheel stars.  I like to take 2 blocks and play with the different combinations and see what secondary designs I can come up with.

 

 

 Stars of Mine: A Visit with Audrey WrightI want to encourage you to make a quilt for a veteran. QOV also will take donated blocks if you are pressed for time. This is my favorite photo of my father-in-law when he was in the Army during WWII. He was a talented artist and really appreciated the quilts I gave him.

 

 

 

 

CakeBitesFront 194x300 Stars of Mine: A Visit with Audrey WrightI also designed a pattern with a more modern feel called Cake Bites using the same fabric line. It is made using precut 10″ squares and a solid red print. This would be a quick easy weekend project. I also think it would make a fun 4th of July picnic quilt on a warm summer day or to lay out under the firework display at night.

My love for my family, my interest in the people who came before us and my passion for creating are what motivate me daily. I  am a self-taught quilter and don’t always follow the rules, but I love every minute of my quilting journey.

Please visit my website, follow my blog, or visit me on Facebook!

Audrey

prizes325px Stars of Mine: A Visit with Audrey WrightThanks so much, Audrey! To celebrate Audrey’s Stars of Mine quilt, we are giving away 2 packs of 10 fat quarters each of fabrics from her Redwork Meets Bluework collection for RJR FabricsLeave a comment below before midnight April 24, 2016 and you’ll be entered into our random drawing. Two names will be drawn on April 25 and notified by email. This contest is open to US and Canadian residents, excluding Quebec.

We have our winners! Congratulations to Karen Ruzinsky of Wilmington, Ohio and Shirley Handlang of Ballwin, Missouri.

StarsofMineWebBonuses600px 300x300 Stars of Mine: A Visit with Audrey WrightAnd here’s a special treat for everyone! We have free web bonus patterns available for 2 extra Stars of Mine projects (right). The mini quilt and pincushion were designed by Audrey and they are adorable home dec accents or gift items. Get your free patterns right here.

If you’d like to make your own version of Audrey’s Stars of Mine lap quilt and don’t already have a copy of the May/June 2016 issue of McCall’s Quilting, you can purchase print and digital copies of the magazine here or download the pattern separately from our online shop.

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Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!

Welcome back to Design Wall Monday! The editors who make McCall’s QuiltingQuilters Newsletter, and Quiltmaker magazines had lots of fun stitching this weekend and we hope you did too. Here’s what a few of our team members are working on right now:

Beam Carolyn Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!Content director Carolyn Beam reports, “I finished sewing the binding on the quilt for the next McCall’s Quilting Quilt Along. This Quilt Along will start June 10th. The colors and design are perfect for summer sewing!”

 

 

Carolyn Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!

Patterson Kathy Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!Online editor Kathy Patterson here, and I made progress on the appliqué for my niece Lara’s wedding quilt this weekend. I finished appliquéing stem/vine wreaths to all 12 block backgrounds, and then I got to work on my violet production line! I need 48 flowers with centers, so first I made all 48 yellow ovals, from 12 different fabrics. I’m using Erin Russek’s appliqué technique where you turn under the edges in advance. Now I’ve moved on to the violet shapes, which are much harder. I have 4 done…44 more to go! I’m making 12 sets of 4 matching flowers each, but I’m not sure yet if I’ll put all matching flowers in a block, or mix them all up throughout the blocks. I’ll need to have a bunch made and audition both ideas before I decide for sure.

Kathy Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!

McDonald Deb Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!Administrative editor Deb McDonald writes, “This weekend I cut and started to sew with a variety of solids. Today is a gray and dreary day in Golden, Colorado. Can’t wait to get home tonight and work with these bright fabrics. Be watching for the finished quilt in an upcoming issue of McCall’s Quick Quilts.”

 

Deb Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!

Russek Erin Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!ErinB Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!Editor Erin Russek had some appliqué fun herself this weekend! “This weekend I made more flowers for the border of my Be Happy quilt (2015 BOM on my blog). Appliqué borders are VERY time consuming. Good thing I like audiobooks!”

ErinA Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!

Baker Lori Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!Acquisitions editor Lori Baker says, “My design wall had two projects going on this weekend. On the back of the chair on the left is a completed quilt top. On the right side of the design wall is the pieced back for that quilt. On the left is my next project. And this is my sewing buddy, Sketch. (Okay, he’s actually a bother. He gets right up there by the machine and I don’t want him to get hurt so I have to stop and move him. Usually 4 or 5 times a day when I’m sewing all day.)”

Lori1 Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!

Eisinger Kelly Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!Editorial assistant Kelly Eisinger had a busy sewing weekend, too. “Here are a couple of images of the baby quilt I made for a new niece in the family. I made 3D butterfly blocks using a gold bird silhouette print for the background and scrappy prints for the butterflies! The only part left is to finish the binding.”

Kelly 1 Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!Kelly 2 Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!

Harris Diane Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!Editor Diane Volk Harris didn’t put anything new on her design wall this weekend, but she does have a cool quilt photo to share. “I spent the weekend in Chicago at International Quilt Festival. Added to my stash and fell in love with this quilt: Raised on Bluebonnets by Suzan Engler from Panorama Village, Texas.” So awesome and inspiring!

Diane Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!

Karr Petras Mary Kate Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!And from editor Mary Kate Karr-Petras: “I spent some time on Saturday figuring out how to make this block for an upcoming free web pattern by Pam Rocco, who writes the regular “Words to Quilt By” column for each issue of Quilters Newsletter. Because she said she made her block by figuring out how to make it based on pictures she’d seen, I didn’t have any previous sources to rely on for the math. And since I’d never made or written a pattern for this type of block before, I decided the best thing was to figure out how to make it just like Pam. I’m pretty happy with it and have a whole quilt in mind now. Keep an eye out for the pattern that will be available online in conjunction with QN’s August/September 2016 issue!”

MaryKate Quilt Design Wall Monday: Butterflies, Cat, Cow, and More!

That’s it from us for this Design Wall Monday. Check out our progress by reading previous Design Wall Monday blog posts here.  And visit the McCall’s Quilting Facebook page and post photos of YOUR work to join the fun and the conversation. We’ll see you there! #designwallmonday

 

 

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Book Review: Blooming Patchwork

Today we’re doing something a little different with this review, inviting the author herself to introduce her book to you. Deanne Eisenman has been designing reader-favorite quilts for McCall’s Quilting and McCall’s Quick Quilts magazines for many years. Her scrappy quilt designs are popular with our traditional quilters and country quilters alike. Deanne’s book, Blooming Patchwork (C&T Publishing/Kansas City Star), is welcoming, warm, and full of folksy scrap quilt patterns you’ll love. Here’s Deanne to tell us more, and don’t miss the book giveaway at the bottom of the page!

My Love of Scrap Quilting Meets Appliqué

Eisenman Deanne 225px Book Review: Blooming Patchwork

Three things in a quilt that usually inspire me: traditional or antique quilt blocks, lots of color, and interesting appliqué. From day one of my quilting life, I have been drawn to the traditional blocks usually found in antique quilts. I am a scrap quilter at heart so I love to breathe new life into a traditional style block or quilt by making it scrappy. Once I have finished a quilt top, adding my unique appliqué motifs makes it feel complete. By doing this so often over the years, this habit eventually evolved into “my style”.

Blooming Patchwork Front Cover 600px Book Review: Blooming PatchworkMy new book, Blooming Patchwork, celebrates the history of appliqué and the joy of making traditional patchwork quilts “bloom” by adding it their designs. So often when I am lecturing or teaching, quilters tell me they do not like hand appliqué or that it’s too hard. These comments sparked the idea for this book and put me on a mission to educate quilters about appliqué and to demonstrate that they really can do it! Along with the nine colorful projects in my book, you will find a brief history of appliqué, common techniques, and handy tips. Each project has detailed step-by-step instructions to guide you as you sew. Here are some of the projects included in the book:

The cover quilt, Star Gazing, is one of the exciting projects you can make! It measures 50″ x 50″ and combines scrappy piecing and appliqué. It is inspired by Native American quilts of the past that used a large star as a focal point representing their connection to their ancestors and future descendants:

Star Gazing Book Review: Blooming Patchwork

In the mid-19th century, block quilts began to replace medallion quilts as the favored motif.  My quilt, Pathways, is inspired by that shift in tastes. This is a 66″ x 66″ cozy lap quilt that is easy to make! It’s a one block quilt that uses several colors to make each block unique:

Pathways Book Review: Blooming Patchwork

Open Window is a project inspired by the friendship or autograph quilts of the mid-19th century with a dash of appliqué to add my “signature”. This wall hanging measures 35″ x 51″:

Window Garden400 Book Review: Blooming Patchwork

To me, every quilt I make is my own little work of art that I hope someday may influence other quilters. My wish is for this book to inspire you to leave your comfort zone and create your own work of art. Dive into your fabric stash and have fun!

I have copies of Blooming Patchwork and my other books available on my website. You can also purchase Blooming Patchwork through the C&T Publishing website.

Deanne

Thanks so much, Deanne! And now, how about that giveaway? We have 4 copies of Blooming Patchwork for some lucky blog readers. Leave a comment below before midnight April 24, 2016 and you’ll be entered into our random drawing. The winning names will be drawn on April 25 and notified by email with subject line beginning YOU WON.

This contest is open to US and Canadian residents, excluding Quebec.

We have our winners! Congratulations to Emily Adair of Carthage, New York; Jill Majers of Salt Lake City, Utah; Angie Faircloth of Martinez, Georgia and Dania Melancon of Ocala, Florida.

You may also like:

DPQMP1615 Book Review: Blooming Patchwork

Garden Geese Digital Quilt Pattern by Deanne Eisenman

th1 Book Review: Blooming Patchwork

Starlit Path Digital Quilt Pattern by Deanne Eisenman

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A Quilter’s Tour of Ireland with Agnes Warren!

th2 A Quilters Tour of Ireland with Agnes Warren!Meet Agnes Warren, a quilter, knitter, crocheter, and artist, with a yarn, paint, and fabric stash that has almost taken over her home in Ireland. She is also a travel escort with Craftours, the company that arranges McCall’s Quilting travel adventures for quilters. Agnes escorts tours around mainland Europe, Ireland, and England, and will be hosting our Quilting, Castles, and Gardens of Ireland tour July 3-13, 2016. 

CountyKerryShore A Quilters Tour of Ireland with Agnes Warren!“Ireland. There are no strangers here- Only friends you haven’t yet met”.

For almost two years I have had the pleasure and privilege of traveling around Europe as a tour escort with Craftours. I have seen the most beautiful sights, from Budapest to Florence, Vienna to Munich, Rome to Prague, London to Salzburg. I have often woken up and had to pinch myself to make sure I wasn’t dreaming. I have had the opportunity to explore new and exciting places, to see the joy experienced by my groups as they explore new territory or revisit beloved memories. Every day is a gift.

LoughInaghCountyGalway400px A Quilters Tour of Ireland with Agnes Warren!As I return home after each trip, flying into Dublin, looking down on the beautiful green fields, I am filled with excitement. Ireland never fails to do that to me.  This gives me some idea of what my tour groups might be feeling as they touch down in Ireland, many for the first time.

I try to remember this feeling weeks later, as I stand at Arrivals, waiting for my group to disembark. I am filled with anticipation, eager to meet my new family, for that is what we will be for the next week. I can’t wait to share my lovely country with them. I will do everything I can to make them feel at home.  Because this is what makes Ireland so special, people feel at home here.

AdareCottage A Quilters Tour of Ireland with Agnes Warren!There is something about the place, something that can’t be put into words, something magical here. It might happen as you stare out at the wild Atlantic from The Cliffs of Moher. Or when you are sitting in a pub listening to a fiddler playing, eyes closed, lost in the music. KinvaraCountyGalwayCastleInLake A Quilters Tour of Ireland with Agnes Warren!Or climbing the stone steps of a Medieval castle, you feel a chill and get goosebumps imagining the stories these walls could tell. Or maybe a feeling of connection to ancient Ireland comes over you as you walk the same steps the early Christian monks walked at St Kevin’s Monastic settlement.

As you wander around Victorian gardens in full bloom at Kylemore, marveling at the beautiful, serene Abbey, you feel a sense of sadness at it’s history.

Kylemore A Quilters Tour of Ireland with Agnes Warren!Or driving through some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world, you are aware that you are in a unique landscape.

GlendaloughCountyWicklowLake A Quilters Tour of Ireland with Agnes Warren!As you sit in a 200 year old cottage, enjoying freshly made tea and scones, you might close your eyes and feel the thread of history that continues under the thatched roof. Or watching the sheep farmer bring in his flock with the help of his dog, instinct playing more of a part than any training ever could. Maybe this is what will touch your soul. Or perhaps it will be while you are watching craftspeople carry on age old traditions, weaving, or cutting glass, or carving marble. As crafters we can appreciate the skill and care that goes into producing such beauty. And Ireland is a treasure trove of hand crafts, there is so much that will inspire you here.

MuckrossHouseKillarney A Quilters Tour of Ireland with Agnes Warren!One thing I know, Ireland will find its way into your heart, and it will stay there. Because above all, Ireland is about people. You will meet some of the friendliest people in the world here.  As you sit in a pub, restaurant, or hotel lobby, you will find yourself in conversation with people of all ages and backgrounds. So, if you decide to come across the sea to Ireland, I wish you Cead Mile Failte (One Hundred Thousand Welcomes). Just beware, you may not want to leave!

Thank you so much, Agnes! It’s easy to see why the groups you have hosted have so many wonderful things to say about their experiences.

If you’d like to know more about our Ireland tour plus optional Scotland add-on, get all the details here. We hope to see you on the trip!

Posted in Ireland trip, Quilting Community, Quilting Inspiration, Travel with McCall's Quilting | 3 Comments