The 13 Best Jelly Roll Quilt Patterns EVER

If there’s one type of quilt pattern that our readers love, it’s a jelly roll pattern. In case you’re new to quilting, Jelly Roll Quilt Patterns are type of precut fabric that typically contain about 40 strips of fabric. These budget-friendly strips are excellent for larger quilt projects, especially strip quilts, and help speed up the quilting process since you don’t have to worry about spending a ton of time measuring and cutting. Jelly roll quilts tend to include quick and easy patterns, which is why they’re such a hit with quilters! FaveQuilts knows how much our readers love this precut, which is why we’ve decided to combine all of our top jelly roll patterns into one convenient list.

13 of the Best Jelly Roll Patterns Ever

From baby quilts for your new grandbaby to bed-sized quilts that you won’t be able to stop showing off, these free quilt patterns take the beloved jelly roll and turn them into something completely new. Pick your favorite and have a blast with your next quilting project!

If you’re new to working with precut fabric, then be sure to check out our Ultimate Guide to Precut Fabric. You can find a huge selection of free jelly roll patterns on this collection page, 45 Free Jelly Roll Quilt Patterns + New Jelly Roll Quilts.

13 of the Best Jelly Roll Patterns EVER!

Magic Jelly Roll QuiltOur Readers Love It!

Golden Autumn Jelly Roll Quilt Pattern

Ice Fractals Jelly Roll PatternNEW!

Jelly Roll Braid Quilt#1

Cozy Posy Triangle Quilt

Cozy Posy Triangle Quilt

One Day Baby Quilt TutorialNEW!

Striped Chevrons Baby Quilt TutorialFor Your New Grandbaby!

Last Minute Jelly Roll Wedding Quilt

Rainbow Bright Bargello Quilt

Rainbow Bright Bargello QuiltNEW!

Ariel’s Wedding Quilt PatternMake It Part of Your World!

Jelly Roll Race Quilt

Christmas Trip Around the World QuiltNEW!

Race to the Finish Jelly Roll Quilt

What’s your favorite type of precut to quilt with? Let us know below in the comments!

7 Must-Have Quilt Patterns for the Holiday Season

If you love free quilt patterns, then there’s nothing like putting them to use for the upcoming holiday season. Why? Well, they simply make the best DIY gifts! Who wouldn’t want to receive one of these personal and beautiful quilt designs for Christmas? We want nothing more than to hide under a soft, warm quilt during the winter months enjoying some hot cocoa by the fire. They’re undeniably amazing and an absolute necessity in the winter!

7 Must-Have Quilt Patterns for the Holiday SeasonNot only do these quilt ideas make great handmade gifts, but they’re also the perfect DIY home decor project for the holidays. Hanging up a quilt pattern like this Polar Bear Wall Hanging will instantly make a room look festive. Plus, you get say you made these unique pieces! These free quilt patterns are great for a blank wall in your home. If you feel like the walls are looking bare and need some festive flair, then these quilt patterns are the answer to your dilemma. They are so full of details and creativity — they’re surely the most unique DIY home decor item anyone could make.

If you’re learning how to make a quilt, then try your hand at a seasonal quilt will last you for years to come. These designs range in difficulty level, so they’re great for both experienced and beginner quilters. Feel free to use up fabric scraps with any of these quilt patterns because they’re sure to turn out special and unique no matter what. There’s no other craft project idea like a quilt: they’re one-of-a-kind pieces that will be treasured for years.

7 Must-Have Quilt Patterns for the Holiday Season

 

Christmas Stars Quilt

Christmas Ribbons Throw

Spinning and Spiraling Christmas Quilt

A Dotty Christmas Quilt Pattern

Christmas Tree Farm Wall Hanging

Polar Bear Wall Hanging

Patchwork Evergreen Quilt

BONUS!

Have fabric scraps? Love making DIY ornaments? These quilt Christmas ornaments are super fun and will compliment any Christmas tree in your home. They also make great DIY gifts or stocking stuffers!

Quilt Christmas Ornaments! 17 Projects to Hang on Your Tree

Quilt Christmas Ornaments! 17 Projects to Hang on Your Tree

 

Comment below and let us know, which one of these festive quilt patterns is your favorite?

The Chevron Summer: 17 Easy Quilt Patterns

We’ve gathered up the summer’s hottest chevron quilt ideas in this blog post, The Chevron Summer: 17 Easy Quilt Patterns.

The crafting term “chevron” gets tossed around a lot. But let’s step back…what is a chevron pattern?

Basically, a chevron pattern is just a variation of a zig zag pattern, with a reoccurring “v-shape.” You can use chevron in quilting in a variety of ways: with quilt blocks, full-sized projects, baby quilts, and unexpected quilting ideas.

The reason that chevron quilts are so popular with crafters is that they’re so easy to assemble. Because you’re working with simple strips of fabric, you definitely won’t get confused. Chevron stripe is also a more modern design, for quilters who are looking to broaden their quilting horizons.

Regardless of the pattern you choose from this AWESOME (if I do say so myself…) list, you’ll have fun looking through all the latest summer trends. We think you’ll pick a few of our projects, though. Because who can resist a free quilt pattern?

Chevron Quilt Blocks

Herringbone String Block A chevron quilt block pattern is a great way to familiarize yourself with the zig zaggy print. These quilt block ideas will inspire and teach you valuable techniques!

1. Herringbone String Block

2. Chevron Strip Tube Block

3. Zigzag Quilt Block

4. Easy Chevron Quilt Block

 

 

 Easy As Pie Quilt Tutorials

The Easiest Chevron QuiltSummertime is difficult enough. It’s hot, and you have to wrangle the kids in from outside. Make your life easier with these simple quilt patterns. Pick bright and cheery fabrics to channel the summer season.

5. The Easiest Chevron Quilt

6. Easy Peasy Chevron Quilt Pattern

7. Chevron Duvet Cover

8. Quirky Colored Chevron Stripe Quilt

9. Chevron Waves Wedding Quilt

 

Chevron-y Baby Quilt Tutorials

Electric Zig Zag QuiltCrafters often wonder how to make a baby quilt. Luckily, chevron stripes are a wonderful introduction to the art of baby quilting. Follow one of these chevron baby quilt tutorials; we promise you won’t go astray.

10. Electric Zig Zag Quilt

11. Softie Chevron Minkee Baby Quilt

12. Striped Chevrons Baby Quilt Tutorial

13. Zig Zag Baby Quilt

14. Chevron Cut Chenille Baby Quilt

 

 

Unexpected Ideas: DIY Chevron Quilt Patterns

Chevron Fun Book CoverSometimes full-scale projects can be boring. You’ll have the chance to quilt something fun and different with these unexpected, easy quilts to make.

15. Chevron Fun Book Cover

16. Chevron Patchwork Initial

17. Style with Chevrons Placemat

 

 

Do You Think Chevron Quilts Are Fun to Make? COMMENT BELOW!

13 Reasons to Start Quilting Today

13 Reasons to Start Quilting Today

It’s the middle of the summer, so it’s hot, sticky, humid, and … did I mention … hot? We all need an indoor respite from the brutal summer sun. Why not try quilting? It’s one of the most popular indoor sewing projects among crafters of all kinds.

The reason why quilting is a great craft for anyone is that it’s good for any skill level, amateur or expert. Also, the majority of quilting is just sewing in straight lines (and who can’t do that?!).

The art of quilting also has many benefits for the soul, too. It’s therapeutic, cheap, and old fashioned fun. Blast your summer tunes and sew your little heart out, because this is definitely a quilter’s summer.

Read this article for 13 Reasons to Start Quilting Today …

 

Afternoon High Tea Quilt‘Cause You’re Looking for Ways to Save Money at Home

With these simple quilt patterns, you can live the lap of luxury for free at home. These quick quilt ideas seem expensive, but are actually really inexpensive to make. Pretend you’re on a European getaway with our first two quilts, and create something useful for your home with the next two!

1. Afternoon High Tea Quilt

2. Love from Paris Quilt

3. Preppy DIY Book Cover

4. How to Make a Dog Bed

 

Everyday Easy Baby Quilt‘Cause Quilts are the Best Baby Shower Gifts

Struggling with what to buy your pregnant friend or daughter? Don’t sweat it. These informative tutorials will teach you how to make a baby blanket inexpensively. We picked some of our easier patterns, so you’ll have a stress-free project.

5. Everyday Easy Baby Quilt

6. Sunday in the Park Baby Quilt

7. Tetris Baby Quilt

8. Simple Quilted Baby Blanket

 

 

  Quilt As You Go Quilt Block‘Cause You Need a New Hobby

These free and easy tutorials will teach you how to make a quilt for beginners. Start with a quilt block, move to a mini quilt, and then try out a full-sized quilt. We think you’ll love these patterns because they’re summery, fun, and totally simple to make.

9. Quilt As You Go Quilt Block

10. Here Comes the Sun Patchwork Quilt

11. Day at the Races Horse Quilt

12. Rainbow Hearts Nine Patch Quilt

13. Kaleidoscope Pinwheel Quilt

 

Why Do You Want to Start Quilting? COMMENT BELOW!

Ragtime Blues: 15 Rag Quilt Patterns

What is a rag quilt and how do you make one?

Luckily this blog post will answer any and all of your questions.

A rag quilt uses the quilt-as-you-go technique to create a square quilt with exposed seams.

Rag quilting is much easier than traditional quilting because you fasten the backing, batting, and top fabric to each quilt block before sewing them all together.

DIY quilt projects are really popular for the summer, especially free baby quilt projects. With rag quilts, babies love the texture of the exposed seams, and parents love how they can throw the quilt in the wash without any hesitation.

Here are some hot rag quilt ideas for summer that we absolutely adore. This post features many fellow-bloggers, but the last five patterns come from FaveQuilts . If you want more rag quilt patterns, check out this article, Snuggly Free Rag Quilt Patterns.

 

Link Love: Easy Rag Quilt Ideas

Beach Beauty Rag QuiltLooking for easy quilt pattern ideas for your summer quilt needs? Whether you need a quilt for the beach, a picnic, or a summer sports game, you will love the patterns from these creative bloggers. Thanks for inspiring us, ladies!

1) Beach Beauty Rag Quilt by Heidi

2) Fancy French Rag Quilt by Shabby Soul

3) Dreaming in Denim Rag Quilt by Crystelle

4) Perfect Pastels Rag Quilt by SewDelish

5) Quilter’s Choice: Rag Quilts in Bright Colors by Beckie

 

Link Love: Baby Rag Quilts

Little Monster Baby Rag QuiltBaby rag quilts are too cute to handle. We love these precious projects from other bloggers!

6) Little Monster Baby Rag Quilt by Patricia

7) Duck, Duck, Goose Baby Rag Quilt by Aubrey

8) Three Shades of Blue Baby Rag Quilt by Amber

9) Itty Bitty Blue Baby Rag Quilt by Joan

10) Fabulous Fleece Baby Rag Quilt by Shannon

 

No More Summer Blues: Free Rag Quilt Tutorials

Fuss Free Rag QuiltEach of these tutorials will teach you the quilt-as-you-go technique. The step-by-step instructions will  make your life so much easier. We picked patterns with blue fabrics because blue is definitely on trend this summer!

11) Fuss Free Rag Quilt

12) Easiest Thrifty Rag Quilt

13) Ragtime Quilt

14) Rustic Rag Quilt

15) Adaptable Rag Quilt

CONTEST: A Quilter’s Mixology

A Quilter's Mixology ContestYou absolutely need a copy of  A Quilter’s Mixology: Shaking Up Curved Piecing by Angela Pinge. Luckily if you enter this contest today, you have a chance to win a FREE copy of the book! Don’t pass up this chance because A Quilter’s Mixology is flying off the shelves in the craft world, so be sure to submit your name to the contest by July 21 at 11:59 Eastern Standard Time!

 

 

 

What’s the Best Part of Rag Quilting? Comment Below!

15 Disappearing Nine Patch Quilts for Summer

Looking for an easy summer sewing project? Nine patch quilts are perfect because they’re so quick to make. What’s a disappearing nine patch quilt, though?

A disappearing nine patch quilt is a simple rift on the traditional nine patch quilt. Each square quilt block is so unique that you can’t immediately tell where the blocks come together.

Take a look at our favorite 15 Disappearing Nine Patch Quilts for Summer. We admit most of them are disappearing, but we picked a few traditional nine patch quilts for old times’ sake, too.

If you’re feeling extra inspired, you can find more free quilt patterns in this article, 20 Free Nine Patch Quilt Patterns + Other Nine Patch Designs.

 

Link Love: Disappearing Nine Patch Quilt Ideas

Pretty in Pink Disappearing Nine Patch QuiltThe following bloggers have a real knack for nine patch quilt patterns. You’ll love their free tutorials because they’re thorough and easy to understand. We like what you’ve done here, ladies!

1. Pretty in Pink Disappearing Nine Patch Quilt by Cathy

2. Cheery Cherry Blossom Disappearing Nine Patch Quilt by Suzan

3. Preppy Pastel Disappearing Nine Patch Quilt by Blenda

4. Wonky Disappearing Nine Patch Quilt by Elizabeth

5. Summer Lovin’ Disappearing Nine Patch Quilt by Sharon

 

 

 

 Easy Disappearing Nine Patch Quilts

The Take Along QuiltThese nine patch quilts are a piece of cake to make. We think that these quilts would be great at the beach, a summer picnic, or a concert in the park. Sew at night time for a relaxing and fun evening activity.

6. The Take Along Quilt

7. Carrie’s Checkerboard Quilt

8. Strawberry Fields Forever Lap Quilt

9.  Lattice Garden Fence Quilt

10. Simply Disappearing Baby Quilt

 

Just for Kicks: Traditional Nine Patch Quilts

These traditional nine patch quilts are absolutely darling. They require a little less time than a disappearing nine patch quilt, and you can even pick a cute theme. We love the under-the-sea motif right now. It’s utterly adorable!

11. Really Simple 9 Patch Quilt

12. Rainbow Squares I Spy Quilt

13. Home Sweet Home Nine Patch Throw

14. Mod Nine Patch Throw

15. Brady Bunch Inspired Nine Patch Block

 

 

FREE BOOK GIVEAWAY!!!Easy-Cut Quilts with a Modern Twist

Enter for the chance to win this awesome Easy-Cut Quilts with a Modern Twist by Laundaur Publishing. This popular quilting book will teach you how to design, layout, and create beautifully composed quilts. This book is perfect to read over in the hammock this summer or on your lawn-chair outside. Click here to enter the contest. The deadline to enter is July 1st at 11:59:59 p.m. Eastern Time.

 

What Do You Prefer: Disappearing Nine Patch Quilts or Traditional Nine Patch Quilts? Comment Below!

Rosemont’s International Quilt Festival: Trends & Hot Topics

Last week AllFreeSewing and FaveQuilts were able to make it to the International Quilt Festival in Rosemont, Illinois. To put it in a word, we were ecstatic. As one would imagine, we’re pretty happy when it comes to seeing what can be pieced together with a needle and thread. Browsing through the amazing finished quilts and cutting edge products had us absolutely giddy.

Janome

Paddycakes

Quilt Display Products

But to keep all of our discoveries and newfound treasures to ourselves would be selfish, so after a few days of calming ourselves down from the madness, we’re here to report the top trends from the International Quilt Festival.

Top Trends from the International Quilt Festival

3D – This is an age of innovation in the world of free motion and hexie quilts. No longer are we confined to keeping things flat with fabric. Ladies and gentleman, it’s time to go big, bold, and home with dimensionality in your quilting projects & products.

 

Handy Caddy

International Quilt Festival Display
Color! Now you might be thinking, “Duh, AllFreeSewing and FaveQuilts, color is always at a quilt festival,” but we’re here to tell you that it was like a color explosion in Rosemont. Brights prominently made their way into every kind of quilt and fabric available at the show.

Fabric Display at International Quilt Festival
Novelty Fabrics – Along with wild colors were uninhibited prints on tons of fabrics we saw available. Movie characters, animals, and even popular Pins made their way to the show this year.

International Quilt Festival Fabric

Robert Kaufman Fabrics
Embroidery – Designs and long-arm machines made our mouths water at the International Quilt Festival. We were particularly excited to see a lot of fabrics that made use of sparkly thread as a detail, similar to inlay thread.

BERNINA         Linda Z's Sewing Center

Needless to say, we’ll be returning next year. Watch out, 2015! Here we come!

International Quilt Festival

 

Have you ever been to a quilt festival?

 

FaveQuilts Talks: Jo and Kelli Kramer

Jo and Kelli KramerJo and Kelli Kramer are longtime favorite designers on FaveQuilts. Their frequent updates with new, crystal-clear quilt tutorials and clear quilting expertise has led many of their tutorials to the top of FaveQuilts’ top clicked links. From beautiful full-bed quilts like the Oz’s Log Cabin Quilt Pattern to quiter lifesaver’s like the Easy Race Quilt Strip Calculator, Jo & Kelli are at the forefront of quilt blogging. We asked them to talk a little about their experience as quilters and bloggers and hope you’ll enjoy their answers as much as we do!

 

1. What first drew you two to quilting?

We are so fortunate. We have a line of quilters and seamstresses that came before us-mothers and grandmothers both. We were always drawn to it.

2. What do you think categorizes most of the quilts you two make? What types of patterns are you typically most attracted to?

This is a hard question because we like it all. We love to see the new trends but we like vintage and Civil War quilts too. I guess over all we could say that scrappy quilts are our favorites.

3. What advice do you have for quilters who are on the verge of (or nervous to) take the next step, from easy to intermediate/advanced quilting?

JO: Oh my, take the leap!! For years I was scared to death of curved seams and never thought I would try a double wedding ring quilt. I thought my piecing skills just weren’t up to it. Then I had two kids get married and both requested double wedding ring quilts. Surprisingly, they truly weren’t that hard to make!! In fact, I made two in nine months!

KELLI: There are still things that I am a bit afraid of, but I think that it is best to start small. You could make a couple of test blocks to see if the new technique you want to try out will be something that will work for you. If you decide that it’s not, you can always turn the few blocks that you tried into a table runner that will make a beautiful table runner!

4. When you set out to design a new pattern, what are your first steps?

For us, Jo typically starts with some quilt block she saw in a vintage quilt book or a quilt she saw at an antique shop. We also play the “what if” game asking ourselves “what if” we turned the block…”what if” we changed this portion to a different color. The “what ifs” continue until we have our quilt.

5. From where do you draw inspiration?

Everything is inspiration….color palettes, fabric lines, trends, vintage books and antique quilts. We design many more quilts that we make.

6. Do you make your patterns on a computer, by hand, or by some other method?&
Jo does most of the designing all via the computer. Kelli does some work with graph paper but most are from the computer.

7. What’s the greatest or most helpful “quilting secret” you’ve learned or created during your years of quilting? (For example, a trick to cutting half-square triangles, the key to mastering free-motion quilting, etc.)

KELLI: Right angle rulers and the companion angle rulers have helped save me time when cutting out a quilt—especially when Jo designs one that needs 2,592 half square triangles. I’ve also learned the importance of making sure that you are comfortable when sewing. I used to get really bad back aches because of the chair that I was sewing on, but with a quilt little change, it was fixed.

8. Do you have a favorite quilt that you’ve made? Or one that you’ve seen, that you wished you designed?

JO: I really don’t have a favorite. Typically it’s whatever quilt I just finished. I think I am most proud of the free form quilts I made with itty bitty fabric scraps that you can see here and Kelli’s wedding quilt.

KELLI: I think that my favorite quilt that I have ever made was this one—Odds and Ends in the June 2010 edition of American Patchwork and Quilting. It was the first 4 or so quilts that I made and looking back, it was quite an undertaking for my skill level at the time as the smallest inner pieces finished at only a half of an inch. I could definitely tell that my sewing skills had improved when I went back to finish it almost 2 years later!

9. What is your favorite part of the quilt-making process?

JO: I think I like the designing the best. I know my least favorite is cutting and pattern writing.

KELLI: I really like getting the fabrics in and getting a good look at our chosen fabrics. Because most of the quilts that we are currently making or have recently made are ones that mom has designed, it is also nice when I have cut out the quilt and finished the top and know that I didn’t mess up when figuring the yardage. My least favorite is putting on borders (unless they are pieced and can be pinned) and writing the patterns, however I know that mom hates writing the patterns more, so I can usually talk her into adding my borders for me if I write the pattern.

10. A newbie quilter approaches you in a café and says, “I don’t know if I really want to start quilting. Can you give me three reasons why I should?” What reasons do you give him or her?

1. Quilting is awesome therapy (and its cheaper too!).
2. It’s a way that I can feel connected to my family- in the connection that I share with my mom, as well as the connection that I never had the opportunity to share with my grandma.
3. It is an extremely satisfying feeling to finish something that you have made of yourself to keep in your home or give as a gift.

Easy-Cut Quilts with a Modern TwistDON’T FORGET! Win a copy of Easy Cut Quilts with a Modern Twist from Landaur Publishing! Easy-Cut Quilts with a Modern Twist asks not, “what design does this quilt use?” but, “how does this quilt’s design affect its overall aesthetic?” Each of the seven deceptively simple quilts in this book are distinct, beautiful and, most importantly, constructed from a wide variety of materials, from pre-cuts to scrap fabric.

Read the full review here.

The deadline to enter is July 1st at 11:59:59 p.m. Eastern Time.

What is YOUR favorite part of the quilt-making process?

14 Fabulous Fat Quarter Quilts

So … what’s a fat quarter? It’s not too late to ask. Don’t worry.  A  fat quarter is simply a rectangular piece of fabric  (18″x22″) from 1 yard of a standard bolt of fabric. In other words, it’s one quarter of a yard of fabric. This blog post will give you fun ideas for fat quarters to sew on different occasions. Simple sewing projects are a great way to use fat quarters. Once you have fat quarter quilt patterns down, you should try one of these 10 Fantastic Fat Quarter Quilt Patterns, too. Learning how to make a fat quarter quilt is such a cinch.

 

Four Fat Quarter Quilts for Baby

Bright and Cheery Fat Quarter Crib QuiltIs there a new baby on the way? Make one of these amazing fat quarter baby quilts. All of these patterns are both easy and free! Check them all out and choose the cutest pattern for the family’s new little addition. You will love what you come up with in these easy sewing projects.

1. Bright and Cheery Fat Quarter Crib Quilt

2. Tiny Trails Baby Quilt

3. Afternoon Six and a Half Dozen Baby Quilt Pattern

4. Fabulous Fat Quarter Baby Quilt

 

 

 

Fat Quarter Quilts for YOU

Steps to Tranquility QuiltTired of making quilting gifts all the time? Then it’s time to make something for you. These quilts are adult appropriate and will fit right in at your house. The best part is that these fat quarter quilts are super easy to make. All of the patterns are free, so definitely take a look!

5. Steps to Tranquility Quilt

6. Nostalgic Fat Quarter Quilt

7. Homemade Blessings Patchwork Quilt

8. Indie Chic Circle Quilt

9. Midwest Crossings Quilt

10. Mod Nine Patch Throw

 

Link Love: Simple Fat Quarter Quilts

Super Square Fat Quarter Quilt

These sewing blogs are absolutely adorable. We love them. It’s always fun to check out new bloggers and broaden our quilting horizons. This week, we want to give a shout out to Sara, Melissa, LeAnne, and Jen for their stellar fat quarter projects. They’re perfect for any occasion, but we know that all of them would make a great gift.

11. Super Square Fat Quarter Quilt by Sara

12. Quick and Easy Fat Quarter Quilt by Melissa

13. Just Growing Fat Quarter Quilt by LeAnne

14. Pretty Pastel Fat Quarter Quilt by Jen

 

 

Special Free Bonus!!!

Peppered Cottons Fat Quarter Collection Enter to win this Peppered Cotton Fat Quarter Collection from Studio e. This is your chance to WIN two 10-piece fat quarter bundles of the Peppered Cottons collection from Studio e Fabrics! The deadline to enter is June 30th at 11:59:59 PM, EST. Click here to enter the contest! You’ll love this luscious collection of fabric for its texture, weight, and rich colors. Submit a form every day, and you could be the ultimate winner!

 

 

What’s Your Favorite Fat Quarter Quilt to Make? Comment Below!

FaveQuilts Talks: Christa Watson

Christa WatsonChrista Watson is one of our most prolific quilt designers. She is one of our foremost experts, providing her readers with full-length quilt-alongs (like the How to Sew a String of Pearls Quilt quilt-along) and nitty-gritty quilt how-tos, like Basting a Quilt with Safety Pins and Making Your Own Design Wall. From beginner quilters to wizened experts, Christa’s blog is full of amazing tutorials to keep any quilter busy at his or her machine!

1. What first drew you to quilting?
I’ve always been drawn to arts and crafts and tried many mediums until I found one that stuck! About 20 years ago some ladies from church were tying quilts for charity and invited me to help. I was instantly hooked with the tactile nature of the quilts, and with all the colors and patterns in the fabrics they were using. It was love at first stitch!

2. What do you think categorizes most of the quilts you make? What types of patterns are you typically most attracted to?
For the first 18 years of my sewing career I was mainly a traditional quilter. However, I discovered modern quilting about 2 years ago and have totally switched my style because of it. That’s all I make now. I love bright, clear colors, clean lines and lots of negative space for machine quilting.

3. What advice do you have for quilters who are on the verge of (or nervous to) take the next step, from easy to intermediate/advanced quilting?
I would say to just take it one step at a time. I don’t think advanced quilting is hard per se. I just think it takes more time and patience. Whenever I am learning a new technique, I allow myself extra time to figure it out so I don’t get frustrated.

4. When you set out to design a new pattern, what are your first steps?
When I have new idea, I will sketch it out on the computer and manipulate the block design or quilt design to see the different layouts I can come up with. Once I settle on one I like, I take time to color it using fabric swatches downloaded from manufacturer’s websites. I will often save different color combinations of the same pattern and it’s amazing how different colors can change the overall look of a pattern.

5. From where do you draw inspiration?
From literally everywhere! Most of my newer work is very graphic in nature and I take a lot of pictures. When I’m out and about I will see lots of interesting shapes and combinations in nature and architecture. I capture them and think about how I can turn what I see into a quilt design. I also read a lot of quilting books and magazines to get in idea of what’s trending. If I see a particular motif being repeated a lot (like chevrons) I will come up with my own take on it.

6. Do you make your patterns on a computer, by hand, or by some other method?
I design everything on the computer, using Electric Quilt software. I love being able to change things up with the click of a button and save several different versions of my ideas. I write up directions using word processing software and then import my computerized sketches into the pattern. I take lots of pictures while I’m making the quilts so I will use those, too.

7. What’s the greatest or most helpful “quilting secret” you’ve learned or created during your years of quilting? (For example, a trick to cutting half-square triangles, the key to mastering free-motion quilting, etc.)
One of my personal mottos is, “It just takes doing.” What it means is that I believe you can accomplish anything you desire, whether it’s tackling a hard quilting design or deciding to design and publish patterns. The first step of taking action is usually the hardest, and it just gets easier from there! To go along with that, I believe practice makes progress when it comes to quilting.

8. Do you have a favorite quilt that you’ve made? Or one that you’ve seen, that you wished you designed?
One of my favorite quilts is my String of Pearls quilt that is listed on the FaveQuilts website. That’s one of my most modern both with the piecing and quilting, and it’s been very well received.

9. What is your favorite part of the quilt-making process?
By far, my favorite part of the process is quilting on my home machine (a Bernina). One of the reasons I enjoy making graphically simple quilt patterns is so that I can have fun with the machine quilting!

10. And now the big one! A newbie quilter approaches you in a café and says, “Christa, I don’t know if I really want to start quilting. Can you give me three reasons why I should?” What reasons do you give him or her?

  1.  Quilting is cheaper than therapy! And probably much more satisfying. If I’m having a bad day, putting in a few stitches on a current project really brightens my day and makes me feel like I can take on the world.
  2. Revel in the joy of the hand made. Quilting is something in my life that allows me to slow down and enjoy the process. Each step is like a new adventure and when a quilt is complete, there’s nothing quite like the joy and satisfaction of saying, “I did it myself.”
  3. It’s also very social and a great way to make friends. Whether you share with others online or in person, taking part in the quilting community is just as thrilling to me as the actual making. Plus, they say that doing creative things can help you live a longer, more satisfying life. How could I say no to that?

Cleaning Out the Closet Book GiveawayLike Christa’s Quilts? Then you’ll love the quilt patterns in these amazing free pattern books! FaveQuilts is cleaning out the closet so you can win a random assortment of incredible quilt patterns and technique tutorials from the FaveQuilts libary.

The deadline to enter is June 16, 2014 at 11:59:59 p.m. Eastern Time.

Enter today!

Do you have any other questions for Christa, or a question you’d like us to ask in our next FaveQuilts Talks installment?