Friday, July 4, 2014

prepping for Sisters

Happy Fourth of July! I hope you enjoy you're holiday. I'm spending part of the day preparing for my trip to Sisters, Oregon for Quilters Affair, where I'll be teaching all next week. There is still some room in my classes, so maybe some of you can join me! Here's what I'll be teaching:

On Monday, I'm teaching my You + Me quilt, my pattern that was inspired by a vintage quilt. It is made of four large quilt blocks that are constructed through piecing strips of fabric together, so we'll learn the techniques of strip piecing and working in large scale. Using three solid colored cottons and simple construction, You + Me creates a strong graphic design that is at once both modern and timeless. The quilt is really easy to construct and comes together quickly, and the class is suitable for both beginner and advanced quilters alike.

On Tuesday, I'm teaching my Ohio Supernova, my modern spin on the traditional Ohio Star pattern. In this version, the scale of the block has been dramatically increased so that it makes up the vast majority of the finished work. Using solid colored cottons and simple construction, the Ohio Supernova packs quite a visual punch, and is suitable for both beginner and advanced quilters alike.

On Wednesday, I'm teaching my Basic Improvisational Quilting class. Improvisational quilting is a fundamental component of modern quilting. In this hands-on workshop, learn how to let go and begin to design intuitively, to create completely unique and one-of-a-kind quilt blocks through a variety of improvisational techniques. From completely random piecing, to improvised blocks with a bit more structure, this workshop will challenge you to think about quilting in a whole new light. Students will be asked to bring a bag of scrap fabric in various sizes as a starting point for their improvisational work.

On Thursday, I'm giving two lectures. The first is Everyday Inspiration in Modern Quits. Many quilters today are finding inspiration in a variety of places in their everyday worlds. Join me for an exciting look at how some of today’s quilters find inspiration just about anywhere and everywhere – from a parking lot to a work of fine art, and everything in between. I will also encourage you to do the same, and I will share tips on how you can bring your everyday world into your own designs.

The second lecture is on Integrating Tradition in Today's Modern Quilt Designs. Many modern quilters, myself included,  integrate traditional components in their quilts; this is often done through the use of traditional patterns, blocks, or techniques. Then, he or she adds their own spin to these traditional components to make them more fresh and modern. Join me for an in-depth look at my process of merging tradition with modernity in quilting.

And finally, on Friday I'm teaching my Blume, otherwise known as Gelassenheit, quilt. Gelassenheit is my  modern take on a traditional Dresden Plate quilt pattern. Only one Dresden Plate block is used in the pattern, but its size is much larger than those found in more traditional versions. The background of this quilt is pieced to create a striped effect, which gives the overall design a lot of movement. This class is best suited for intermediate quilters, although a confident beginner can also complete this pattern. 

I'll also be in Sisters for the quilt show on Saturday, and then I head home on Sunday. I'm so excited to be spending a week teaching and lecturing, and I hope to see some of you there. You can find out more information about Quilters Affair and still register for classes, including some of mine, at

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Large-Scale Piecing, my contribution to Lucky Spool's Essential Guild to Modern Quilt Making

Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making: From Color to Quilting: 10 Workshops by Your Favorite Teachers 
(Lucky Spool Media; Distributed by The Taunton Press; June 2014; $28.95)

Today is my stop on the blog tour of the new book Lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making, which is being released this month. I love this book, and am quite honored to be included in it. The book is really an all-inclusive guide to modern quilt making, and is structured so that each chapter is a different workshop, led by the best teachers in the field of modern quilting, including Denyse Schmidt, Jacquie Gering, and Angela Walters, and each focusing on his or her specialty. In it you will learn the principles and composition of color, how to piece with solids and prints, multiple curved piecing techniques, the fundamentals of improv and paper piecing, tips and tricks for large-scale piecing, applying alternate grid work to your quilt tops, and modern machine quilting. There are also sixteen patterns that explore all of the techniques that are covered in the book, as well as a gallery of 50 modern quilts. 

My chapter in the Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making is on Large-Scale Piecing. In it I share all of my favorite tips and techniques for achieving great results while working in a large-scale format, including how to create oversize blocks and large areas of negative space, playing with scale and composition, fabric selection and cutting, and construction techniques. My pattern for the book is called Ebb and Flow and it features a large-scale churn dash design.

I really love this quilt because it's such a simplified design and it comes together quite quickly, but it has such a strong visual presence. I made the original one for the book using Kona Parchment, Kona Cadet, and Kona Artichoke, and I can't wait to make another in a totally different color palette. I think black, white, and gray could be pretty amazing.

My original Anni quilt is also included in the gallery of modern quilts that was curated by Heather Grant.

In celebration of the book's release, the Taunton Press, distributor of the book, is offering a 20% discount on it if you order it through their store until July 21. Please use the code EGQM20 during check out for the discount.

Be sure to follow along all of the stops of the tour to learn more about the Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making. Here's the schedule:

6/23  ++ Chapter 1: Principles of Color taught by Kari Vojtechovsky
6/24 ++  Chapter 2: Working with Solids taught by Alissa Haight Carlton
6/25 ++  Chapter 3: Working with Prints taught by Dan Rouse
6/26 ++ Chapter 4: Improvisational Patchwork taught by Denyse Schmidt
6/27 ++ Chapter 5: The Alternate Grid taught by Jacquie Gering
6/30 ++ Chapter 6: Circles and Curves taught by Cheryl Arkison
7/01 ++ Chapter 7: Paper Piecing taught by Penny Layman
7/02 ++ Chapter 8: Large-Scale Piecing taught by Heather Jones
7/03 ++ Chapter 9: Modern Machine Quilting taught by Angela Walters
7/04 ++ Chapter 10: A Study of Modern Quilts curated by Heather Grant

And learn more about Lucky Spool Media and see what other amazing books editor Susanne Woods has in the works at
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