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“Chronos” embroidery collection and American Patchwork and Quilting Podcast

Hi there everyone!  I hope you are having a great week.  I’m excited to announce a couple of things…

1) I have a new embroidery collection called “Chronos” coming out with OESD in March.  It is a more masculine embroidery collection which is different for me.  It is for all of us looking to sew for sons, husbands, and fathers.  Feminine designs are so easy to find – not so masculine.  I’m getting my embroidery needles sharpened!

“Chronos”

Secondly, I’m going to be on Pat Sloan’s American Patchwork and Quilting podcast Monday, talking about quilting, embroidery, teaching, book writing etc.  I actually have some big news to share on the fabric design front as well so it is great timing!

Hope everyone has a wonderful Valentine’s Day weekend with lots of sewing!
Amanda

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APQ Modern Lace Pillow

Well, it has been a couple of months since I’ve posted.  Time has really flown!  Are the holidays over already?  Where did January go?  Right before Fall Market I quilted a fun small project for American Patchwork & Quilting that I can finally share with you.  It is on newsstands starting today!
Used with permission from American Patchwork & Quilting® magazine.
©2015 Meredith Corporation. All rights reserved.

It is a colorful oblong pillow made out of my Modern Lace line for Blend Fabrics.  It was such fun to sew.  A little traditional and a little modern at the same time – my favorite!  There are lots of other great projects in this issue so keep your eyes peeled for it!

If you are looking for fusible appliqué tips check out my Craftsy class using this link and get $10 off!

Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!  Happy quilting!

Amanda

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Zigzag Christmas and Thanksgiving Sale

Hi everyone!  Have you already started Thanksgiving cooking?  We finished our sweet potatoes and cranberry-pear sauce, but still have lots of cooking ahead of us tomorrow.  (And, if I’m lucky, maybe a little sewing too.)

This is a little belated but LOTS of readers have written to me asking for a pattern that was originally released with my Holiday Bouquet line.  The problem was, I really didn’t want to release it without reworking the directions significantly, so I needed to push it until after Market.  In the original pattern Blend referenced SKU listings, rather than fabric descriptions, which was a little confusing.  Also, I wanted to rework the instructions and make a few changes so that you could use one fabric for the upper background and one for the lower background – I just love the look!  So, here is is… Zigzag Christmas!

I used my good friend Cherry Guidry’s Frosty Forest line for Benartex for Zigzag Christmas this time.  It has some lovely blenders and is so cute!  (It ships to stores later this year.)  SKU info is included in the pattern.

I really wanted to sew a new version to show you all on the blog – both in Frosty Forest and also a scrappy version using extra fabric from Modern Holiday (because I seem to be a fan of biting off more than I can chew) – but I know that some of you all really wanted Zigzag Christmas as soon as possibly with Christmas right around the corner, so I went ahead and posted it in my shop.  And also in the shop this weekend – starting on Thanksgiving and running through Sunday – a SALE!  20% off all using the code HAPPYTHANKSGIVING !

…. because that is what I hope you all have!

What will you sew this weekend?  I’m hoping to start a new version of Holiday Forest, the cover project pictured on Modern Holiday, in reds and pale blues, and greys for my mom.  (No, mom, it isn’t done or even started yet, but I’m working on it!)

Whatever you may be cooking, piecing, or quilting, have a lovely holiday weekend!
Amanda

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Yorkshire Park Blog Tour

Note: The Quilters Newsletter magazine and fat quarter bundle winner is Audrey and the winner of my patterns is Karen of Karen-Quilts etc. Both liked Mini-Garden Paths!  Thanks to everyone who commented!

Hi everyone!  Today is the first day of the Quilters Newsletter’s Best Fat Quarter Quilts 2014 blog tour.  Don’t you love fat quarter quilts?  They are so fun and easy to choose fabric for!  Quilters Newletter has giveaways scheduled for the entire week (and mine is at the end of this post) so keep your eyes peeled!

My quilt for this issue is Yorkshire Park.  The original was made in Topiary.

But I’ve been playing around with it tonight and I like it in Modern Lace, my new collection for Blend Fabrics, as well (plus a little green from Topiary for the leaves).  What do you think?
Or maybe with a navy background, but with light blue leaves?

We’ll have two winners for the giveaway, ok?  The first will win a copy of the magazine and a fat quarter bundle of Silvia’s Sonnet by Silvia Vassileva from P&B Textiles, courtesy of Quilters Newsletter.  The second will win a copy of three of my newest patterns: Mini Blossoms, Mini Garden Paths, and Chantilly.  To, enter, let me know which one is your favorite of these patterns )(shown below) by commenting on this post sometime today (Monday, November 9th).  You can enter until midnight Mountain Time.

Make sure to visit Quilters Newsletter throughout the week for fun prizes!

Happy sewing!
Amanda

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Fall Market 2014 and Modern Lace patterns

Oh my goodness has it really been almost three months???  It has been a really busy three months even though I can’t really say what I was working on most of the time yet.  Suffusive to say I got the the end of September and what seemed like my twentieth deadline and realized Market was only a few weeks away so I had better work fast.

Luckily Blend Fabrics sent plenty of my Modern Lace line my way (shipping to stores now).

First up in the new pattern category is Chantilly.

Chantilly (45-1/2” x 64-1/2”)
It features just two appliqué motifs that are combined to give an elegant look.  Best of all, most of the appliqué is ended in the seams so there isn’t a need to knot threads!

I did two mini quilts this time as well, Mini Blossoms and Mini Garden Paths

Mini Garden Paths (19-1/2” x 23-1/2”)
Mini Blossoms (20-1/2” x 20-1/2”)

They were such fun to sew.  And I loved the way the whitework blue print worked for the flowers so I just had to make up my original Blossoms quilt in the pink whitework print.

So here’s the original Blossoms in a new cover!

Blossoms (64-1/2” x 82-1/2”)

I also redid Love Birds and Forever in Modern Lace.  I really love them – they give those patterns a completely different look!

Love Birds (18-1/2” x 26 1/2”)
Forever (30” x 30”)

Modern Lace has 12 SKUs and I really strove to combine them in ways to make each quilt look totally different.  The SKU info, for easy ordering, is listed on each.  I hope you like them! You can find them in my store and on Craftsy.  All printed patterns are in with the exception of Mini-Garden Paths – I’m expecting that the middle of next week and will ship it right after.  (And shops that ordered at Market, your orders will be on the way the middle of next week as well!)

To celebrate the new patterns let’s have a little sale, ok?  20% off of patterns using the code MODERNLACE in my store.  Now through this Monday night (November 10th).

Happy quilting and I hope you are having lovely fall!
Amanda

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Sundance Quilt: Part 6

This weekend I made my Dresden plate blocks for my latest version of the Sundance quilt, directions for which available through your local BERNINA dealer.

As you can see, these plates flank the sides of the quilt, which is set on point, so the plates are actually applied to large quarter square triangles.

First I cut a 8 plates from each of five fabrics.  You can use the template provided, but if you happen to have Darlene Zimmerman’s Easy Dresden Ruler, you can use the 6″ mark to cut the plates as well.

Note that I changed some of the fabrics for the plates from the original plan.  I like to sew with pre-washed fabrics and I didn’t have enough of some of those already washed so I took a shortcut and opted to switch out some of the fabrics to others from my Topiary line for Blend Fabrics instead!

Chain-piece the ends of the plates – I like to backstitch at each end.

Clip off the excess fabric at the corners, press the seams open, and turn the plate right side out.  Press, centering the seam.

Join the plates, pressing the seams open.  I like to fuse a little piece of Steam-A-Seam tape onto the edges of the Dresden because I find it is a more secure method of securing the plates when I sew.

Remove the tape’s paper backing and fuse it down onto the background triangle, being careful not to stretch the triangle’s bias edges!  Use the background fabric to align the quarter circle before trimming it away to reduce bulk.

Appliqué the quarter circle.  Pretty simple!

I’ll be back after Market to piece the quilt top together.  I’m waiting to quilt this one on a BERNINA long arm – I can’t wait!

If you are sewing along be sure to post your progress on Instagram using the hashtags #berninausa #sundancequilt.

Hope you enjoy the last days of summer!
Amanda

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Some thoughts on Social Media…

Note: This is a very different post for me.  I normally don’t post my thoughts about these types of things online… but these issues have been on my mind in recent weeks.  If you just want to quilt, please skip this post!

Hi everyone,

The quilting community has heavily embraced social media and it has been a really great thing.  It is seems strange that something so big and all-encompassing has actually made the world seem like a smaller place, but I think venues like Instagram and Facebook have accentuated the similarities between us all.  We’ve seen amazing things happen on these platforms that couldn’t have happened ten years ago, from people sharing creative ideas and thoughts to online communities providing support to those who have been sick or are going through a particularly tough time. It has been nothing short of incredible.

But having a teenage son and daughter has caused me to think about the influence of social media a lot lately.  Our kids are growing up in an age where every aspect of their lives is public in a way they probably won’t realize for years to come.  And while the “selfie” phenomenon can be fun, its overuse is disturbing.  What does it say about our society, or even about the way our daughters (especially) perceive or choose to project themselves?  Comments like, “You’re perfect!” followed by “You’re more perfect” are so perfunctory they are almost meaningless, and yet their popularity says so much about our times and culture.

A selfie, however well-staged, does not project the totality of who person is.  So, what “post-able things” might be fun to share?

The world around us.  Have you been somewhere amazing lately and just have to share?
Friends.  What do especially value in a particular person or people?  (Not yourself.)
What are your hobbies?  What do you like to do in your free time?
Something funny that happened to you.  (My mother – hi Mom! –  is forever telling people about the time she sat on a frappuccino.  I’d worry about embarrassing her here, but she probably has already told you so no worries.)
Something beautiful that you experience.  Maybe there was a beautiful garden you walked through or a store display that was really amazing?  
Pay it forward.  If you have a great idea for making the world a better place share it!  Maybe this morning you helped someone feel part of a group or maybe they helped you!  Just thinking about these things may start a trend!

If you have teens (or if you don’t) what are your thoughts?  I’d love to hear.

Thanks for listening.  Back to quilting the next time… I promise!  Have a good weekend!
Amanda

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“20 Fresh Appliqué Techniques” now on Craftsy!

I’m so excited to announce my third class with Craftsy – “20 Fresh Appliqué Techniques!”

As many of you know, I love machine appliqué and all the design possibilities it makes possible.  In this class, I cover the basics you need to achieve beautiful machine stitches and then we move on together to covering more advanced techniques.  You’ll see so many possibilities for incorporating these techniques into your own projects!

We’ll start with my swirl quilt, where we’ll master the blanket stitch on convex and concave turns and inner and outer corners, which is really the secret to great-looking machine appliqué.  This is a quick, charm-square-friendly quilt and all the threads end in the seams so there is no need to knot them!

Next we will tackle my Cutting Garden Runner.

This features two types of appliqué – the large blossoms are appliquéd before joining the blocks and the small blossoms are added afterward.  And you’ll learn how and why to “window” your fusible in this project.

Then we’ll tackle my Flower Power pillow.  This is a companion piece to my Flower Garden pattern (available in Craftsy and in my shop).  We’ll learn how to appliqué with speciality stitches, where to pivot stitches for a beautiful finish, and how accentuate your design with quilting to make it sing!

And along the way we’ll learn three different methods you can use to create bias bars…

Finally, we’ll add extra dimension to my Hawaiian Table Topper design using a Trapunto technique.  It is so much easier than it looks and you’ll find uses for it in all sorts of projects!
And I’ll teach you how to “face” an unusually shaped project along the way.
The projects are small and quick and make great gifts – and you’ll learn lots of new things along the way.
I hope you will joint me in “20 Fresh Appliqué Techniques”!  
Happy sewing!
Amanda
P.S.  Ann.ost was the lucky winner of the Craftsy class.  Congratulations, Ann!
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Sundance Quilt: Part 5

This month I sewed Part 5 of the Sundance Sampler, available exclusively through Bernina dealers, with my Topiary collection for Blend Fabrics and Aurifil threads.  Part 5 is easy – just appliqué blocks!

I love doing appliqué with Aurifil 28 wt. thread in a variety of colors – it creates a lovely ridge around each motif.  For this project I used colors 2440, 5017, and and 2425.  I still use 50 wt. in the bobbin in a neutral color and lower my thread tension so it doesn’t pop to the top.  I set my Bernina 780 to stitch 1329 and adjust the stitch width to 2.1, the length to 2.4 and the tension to 1.5 or 1.75.  (Lots more about appliqué in my upcoming Craftsy class, debuting tomorrow.)

I hope you are having a wonderful summer and get lots of time sewing this week!
Amanda

P.S.  Carrie P is that winner of the Garden Spot giveaway here on this blog.  I have lots of things happening all at once here and have subsequently had a lot of giveaways and am seriously behind on my replies.  I apologize.  I really appreciate all of your participation!

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My new Craftsy class goes live on the 17th! (And they are doing a giveaway!)

Hi there,
I’m SOOOO excited because my new Craftsy class is going live this Tuesday, the 17th!

This time I’ll be teaching fusible machine appliqué and we’ll cover lot of different techniques!  I’ll show you more Tuesday, but in the meantime Craftsy is offering a giveaway of the class to celebrate the launch.    To enter, all you have to do is visit this link and either create a Craftsy account or just login to your existing Craftsy account.  They will choose a winner on Tuesday.

Have a wonderful weekend and happy sewing!
Amanda

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