Piece and Quilt by Christa Watson

christaquilts

Christa Watson of Christa Quilts fell in love with quilting back in 1994 and never looked back! She is now known as an authority on machine quilting and has two recent book releases to support her passion, Machine Quilting with Style and The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting (co-authored with Angela Walters). Christa’s debut Aurifil thread collections pull from her go-to thread 50wt threads in Colors and Neutrals. These collections are the perfect companion for any quilting project!

[illustrations by Sabrina Vincent]

THREAD COLLECTION DETAILS
Piece and Quilt Collection: Colors

12 Large Spools, 50 wt, 1422yds/each
2250 – 1133 – 2920 – 2130 – 2884 – 2886 – 2783 – 2725 – 2520 – 1148 – 4020 – 2425

christwatson-pieceandquiltcolors

Piece and Quilt Collection: Neutrals
12 Large Spools, 50 wt, 1422yds/each
2024 – 2311 – 2405 – 2315 – 2615 – 5007 – 2605 – 1246 – 2326 – 5021 – 2372 – 4241

christwatson-pieceandquiltneutrals

To view this info on our website, click the image above. For purchasing, please contact your local Aurifil Dealer.

THE INTERVIEW
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and how you first got started in the world of quilting?
Growing up, my mom was a very talented seamstress and I remember going to the fabric store to pick out funky prints which she would then sew into wild pants and mini skirts for me. (I was into the “mod” style back then – if anyone even remembers what that was!!) But she never made any quilts, so I hadn’t ever seen one before. She tried to get me involved in sewing but I was NOT interested at all. However, I do remember fondly sticking straight pins into the holes of her old Singer sewing machine, wondering where they went…

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Fast forward to my early twenties, and my quilting journey started when some church friends invited me to tie quilts for charity. Exploring the fabrics, and making each hand-tied stitch was the most fun, tactile thing I’d ever done. One of these friends invited me over to her house to make a quilted pillow a few weeks later, and I was hooked! It was love at first stitch. I clearly remember my friend showing me how to use her machine which was some brand I had never heard of before – a BERNINA. All these years later I am still a loyal BERNINA fan and I’m also a brand ambassador for the company.

Of course, what comes around goes around, as I discovered many years ago, when I found my young children gleefully sticking straight pins into the holes of my new sewing machine!

Do you remember the process of creating your first quilt and how you felt once it was finished?
My first quilt was made for my husband Jason – a simple nine patch made for his birthday during our first year of marriage. (That was 22 years ago!) I remember making one block at a time, with a sewing machine borrowed from my mom. I didn’t know anything about using quarter inch seams, so no two blocks were the same size. But I remember feeling so proud as each block came off of the machine, and he still uses that quilt to this day! I’m kind of embarrassed to share it, but it just goes to show I’ve come a loooong way in my quilting journey!

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First Quilt

Who or what has been your greatest creative inspiration?
I have to give my mom credit here for not punishing me for playing with her pins, buttons and scraps when I was younger. Although it took me awhile to finally find sewing, she was always encouraging me in my crafty endeavors growing up. We tried everything from potato stamp carving and candy making to ceramics and crochet but none of them ever stuck. When I finally found quilting, she was eager to be my first quilting student, which then led me down the path of making quilting my career. After all, if you can teach your mom to do something fun and rewarding, you can teach anyone, right??

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Christa’s Pile of Quilts

 What do you love most about the art of machine quilting?
I love seeing the hand of the maker in one’s art, and I enjoy the fact that I can give my quilts a final layer of texture and design, using my own hands. Moving the quilt under the machine is a very meditative process for me, and I don’t worry about perfection as I form each stitch. It all goes back to that tactile quality which I love so much.

 

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You released your first book, Machine Quilting with Style last year, and recently released your second quilting book, The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting, co-authored with Angela Walters. What was the process of writing those books like and what did you love most about them?
In both books, I’ve been able to include patterns for not only how to piece the quilts, but how to quilt them, too, so they are both like two books in one. From the start, when I began teaching quilting on a regular basis, I would take my students through the entire process of making a complete quilt, from start to finish.

Writing both of these books has allowed me to take the teaching process I developed over the years and put it into book form, with the enthusiasm and encouragement I offer in my live classes.

Working with Angela on the second book was a fabulous experience. She quilts on a long-arm while I quilt on a sit-down domestic machine, and we both agree that it’s so important for our readers to have fun and not stress while they discover the type of quilting that appeals to them the most.

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Facets

Do you have a favorite project from the book?
My favorite quilt from Machine Quilting with Style is Facets. It was the first quilt I designed for the book and once I came up with it, I knew I was onto something. It allows you to combine both walking foot quilting and free-motion quilting, which is my favorite way to quilt.

My favorite quilt from The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting is Swirling Butterflies because it’s the first time I made a wholecloth quilt. I really stretched my skills with that one, and I love that both books offer a wide variety of designs for all skill levels. Both quilts were entirely pieced and quilted with Aurifil thread, of course!!

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Swirling Butterflies

 If you could recommend one pattern that would be an excellent starting point for machine quilting beginners, what would it be and why?
I would recommend Little Man’s Fancy from Machine Quilting with Style, quilted with “shattered” straight lines. The one block quilt is fast and easy to make and the size is easy enough to handle under the machine for the first time out. Straight lines are quilted haphazardly allover the quilt so the process is super fun and fast and there’s literally no way to mess it up. Whenever I teach beginners I always like to start with walking foot quilting because it gives them the confidence that their quilts can look great with minimal practice and effort. Then, once I have them hooked, I ease them into gradually more complex designs.

 

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Little Man’s Fancy

 When did you first discover Aurifil threads and what do you love most about them? Do you have a favorite color/weight?
I’ve been using them since the summer of 2013 after I kept seeing the name pop everywhere on social media. In all my years of quilting I had never found the brand that was right for everything I wanted to do. When I noticed that all my friends and those I follow were raving about them on social media, I had to give them a try. Once I did, I quickly cleaned out my thread stash and got rid of everything else! In fact, I know the date because I wrote about them on my blog for the first time here.

Christa loves matching her threads to her fabrics!

Christa loves matching her threads to her fabrics!

I love all of the colors of the 50 weight cotton because I can use them for everything I do – piecing, quilting and binding. I like to use matching or blending threads when I machine quilt, so only storing one type of thread for everything really simplifies my quilting life. Plus, any leftover bobbins from machine quilting can be used when I piece or bind my next scrappy quilt. For me, that means no more wasted thread and tons more sewing efficiency!

How did you go about selecting threads for your Piece and Quilt Collection, and what excites you most about the range that you are presenting?
When I first set out to curate my collection, I took a good hard look at the colors I used the most in my own work. When I finally narrowed it down, I realized I had two collections – Colors and Neutrals. As the name implies, these 24 spools can help you make all of your quilts. The colored assortment includes the entire rainbow spectrum so there’s a color for everything. And you’d be surprised how well the colors will blend, even if it’s not an exact match.

Choosing Colors Quilt – Using Christa's favorite colors

Choosing Colors Quilt – Using Christa’s favorite colors

The neutrals include my favorite white and cream, my favorite “almost” black which shows up better on black fabric than pure black, three shades of gray (light, medium, dark), and a range of 6 other neutrals which fill in the gaps. I’ve been experimenting over the last few months, using only these colors from both collections and so far, they’ve been all I need. Like I said, I love simplicity and I hope you will, too!

AURIFIL DESIGNER OF THE MONTH
Christa was the Aurifil Designer of the Month for March 2016. Click on the image below to download her block pattern and learn more about the DOM program!

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BOOKS
 8b_Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting     8a_Machine Quilting With Style

THE GIVEAWAY

christawatson-pieceandquiltrafflecopter

To enter-to-win 1 Large Piece and Quilt Aurifil Thread Collection + your choice of either Machine Quilting with Style or The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting, click here to head to the Rafflecopter entry page, or simply click on the image above. You do not have to complete all the options to be entered but the more options you choose, the more entries you have!  Entries will be accepted from now through 11:59pm Eastern Time on Wednesday, October 26! Winner will be randomly selected and announced here on Thursday, October 27. Good luck!

Update: This Giveaway is now closed. Thank you to all who entered and Congratulations to our winner, Donna Cutting!!

ABOUT CHRISTA
BlogInstagramFacebookQuilt With Christa on Facebook
10-focal-pointChrista Watson is an award winning quilter, pattern designer, EQ artist and author who loves to teach others how to successfully quilt on a home sewing machine. She considers herself a cheerleader for the DIY modern aesthetic. She’s heavily involved in both modern and traditional quilt guilds and loves to encourage everyone to enjoy the style of quilting that appeals to them. Christa lives in Las Vegas, Nevada with her husband and three children who all think it’s normal to have a house full of fabric. Visit her at ChristaQuilts.com.

Get one of Christa’s free patterns here: http://eepurl.com/BZ3mL

Aurifil 2016 August Designer of the Month Angela Walters

Aurifil 2016 Design Team August Angela Walters collage

I’m Designer, Author, Radio show host Pat Sloan.. Our August Designer is Angela Walters of Quilting is my Therapy.  The first time Angela and I had a chance to chat was at a trade show. It has been exciting to watch her grown as an artist and designer.

Angela has a wonderful series of articles called ‘The Business of Machine Quilting’. If you are looking to create a business quilting for others, I recommend you read her series.

I chatted with Angela 10/8/12 and 5/14/12  on my talk show CLICK to Listen or subscribe by Itunes

Let’s get to know  Angela!

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Aurifil 2016 July Designer of the Month Wendy Sheppard

Aurifil 2016 Design Team July Wendy Sheppard collage

I’m Designer, Author, Radio show host Pat Sloan.. Our July Designer is Wendy Sheppard of Ivory Spring, as her motto says “Where treasures of past and present connect”. Wendy and I live in the same area and we discovered we have a love of Applique, quilts with great color, Aurifil thread, and  days without rain!!  We both noticed that when we had a regular Tuesday evening meeting.. it seemed to ALWAYS rain!

What I love is how Wendy’s patterns spam a great many techniques and styles. Besides her applique, my favorites are the pieced patterns that look amazing, but are very easy to do! Wendy is a master at that, which I think you’ll see today.

I have talked with my friend Wendy  2/15/16 on my talk show CLICK to Listen or subscribe by Itunes

Let’s get to know  Wendy!

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Aurifil 2016 April Designer of the Month Kate Spain

Aurifil 2016 Design Team April Kate Spain collage

I’m Designer, Author, Radio show host Pat Sloan. We are finally in spring in my part of the world and our April Designer is the amazing Kate Spain!

The quilt world is so lucky to have the talented Kate Spain design gorgeous Moda fabrics and curate yummy Aurifil thread collections for us! She designs for many places, you can find rugs, stationary and much more with her beautiful patterns on it.

We have become good friends over the years and I’m really happy she is on our design team for 2016!  You can listen to my chat with Kate on my talk show.. —>  3/17/14 click to  listen

Pat Sloan enter your aurifil block.jpg

PLEASE READ — We are CHANGING something!!

Our Monthly quilt block Challenge will now be at my website with a Photo sharing party! This will be much easier for everyone.  If you want to look first, It’s HERE

We LOVE our MONTHLY thread BOX giveaway (seriously folks… you could win a box of my thread which is over $120.00 value.. JUST for making a quilt block… you have to join in!). Each month we pick one random winner that has made a  block from our featured designer of the prior month. That person receives a FULL BOX of my Aurifil thread as the prize!

Grab your Kate Spain fabric and let’s get to know her!

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Aurifil 2016 March Designer of the Month Christa Watson

Aurifil 2016 Design Team March Christa Watson collage

I’m Designer, Author, Radio show host Pat Sloan. We are jumping out of winter in my part of the world and I couldn’t be happier!  Our March Designer is Christa Watson of Christa Quilts!

Christa is an Author, Teacher, Shop owner, Designer, and Aurifil thread lover for many years. She has a passion for quilting, which she shares at her website and Facebook group via sew alongs and tutorials. She is always sharing something great! 

podcast_listening

We have become good friends over the years and I’m really happy she is on our design team for 2016!  You can listen to Christa and I chat on my talk show.. —>  Christa was on 6/3/14 and 9/8/15, take a listen

Pat Sloan enter your aurifil  block.jpg

PLEASE READ — We are CHANGING something!!

Our Monthly quilt block share will now be at my website with a Photo sharing party! This will be much easier for everyone.  If you want to look first, It’s HERE

We LOVE our MONTHLY thread BOX giveaway (seriously folks… you could win a box of my thread which is over $120.00 value.. JUST for making a quilt block… you have to join in!). Each month we pick one random winner that has made a  block from our featured designer of the prior month. That person receives a FULL BOX of my Aurifil thread as the prize!

Let’s get to know Christa!

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Aurifil 2016 January Designer of the Month Heather Valentine

Aurifil 2016 Design Team January Heather Valentine

It’s a bright shiny new year and we have a whole new team of designers for 2016! We are making a block a month and I asked each designer to create a blue and white block. They are going to share their inspiration and tell us about themselves in my interviews on the 15th of each month.

By the end of the year you will have 12 blocks and I’ll have a setting for you!  I’m Designer/Radio show host PatSloan, and I can’t wait for you to meet these 12 Designers this year and get to know them.

My January interview and quilt block is with Heather Valentine of The Sewing Loft.   I’ve been doing projects with Heather and really love what she shares at her website. She has so many great tips and tutorials, you need to sign up for her newsletter!  I also interviewed Heather on 8/11/14, take a listen

Pat Sloan Perfect Colors3

We continue our MONTHLY thread BOX giveaway (seriously folks… you could win a box of my thread which is over $120.00 value.. JUST for making a quilt block… you have to join in!). We will pick one random winner that has made a  block from our 2014 designers and that random person receives a FULL BOX of my Aurifil thread as the prize! Winners are all contacted via Flickr email and posted at our FLICK GROUP HERE

Let’s get to know Heather!

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Aurifil 2015 August Designer of the Month

Aurifil 2015 August designers logo

Welcome to our 2015 Designer of the Month program,  I’m Designer/Radio show host PatSloan! Our August interview and mini quilt is from the amazing Nancy Rink, Author, fabric designer and a long time supporter of Aurifil.  She has created some amazing quilts you can make, plus I really love the stories behind her books. When I interviewed Nancy on 8/18/14 and 7/29/13 we chat about her books, it’s a great show!  .. You can listen RIGHT at your computer to my podcast HERE

Pat Sloan Perfect Colors3We continue our MONTHLY thread BOX giveaway (seriously folks… you could win a box of my thread which is over $120.00 value.. for making a quilt block… you have to join in!). We will pick one random winner that has made a  block from our 2014 designers and that random person receives a FULL BOX of my Aurifil thread as the prize! Winners are all contacted via Flickr email and posted at our FLICK GROUP HERE

Let’s get to know Nancy!

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Aurifil 2015 July Designer of the Month Ebony Love

Aurifil 2015 July designers logo Welcome to our 2015 Designer of the Month program,  I’m Designer/Radio show host PatSloan! Our July interview and mini quilt is from the super talented Ebony Love! If you have not meet Ebony and followed her really fun sew alongs, you are in for a treat. Ebony is an expert in die cut machines and you can learn a lot from her books and lessons on getting the most from your machine. Plus she has run the ever popular Downton Abbey sew alongs and see at the end what’s next! I interviewed Ebony on 4/1/13 and 2/11/13 .. you can listen RIGHT at your computer to my podcast HERE Pat Sloan Perfect Colors3 We continue our MONTHLY thread BOX giveaway (seriously folks… you could win a box of my thread which is over $120.00 value.. for making a quilt block… you have to join in!). We will pick one random winner that has made a  block from our 2014 designers and that random person receives a FULL BOX of my Aurifil thread as the prize! Winners are all contacted via Flickr email and posted at our FLICK GROUP HERE Let’s get to know Ebony! Continue reading

Aurifil 2015 June Designers of the Month Barb Groves and Mary Jacobson

Aurifil 2015 June designers logo

Welcome to our 2015 Designer of the Month program,  I’m Designer/Radio show host PatSloan!

Our June interview mini is by the Sisters and Design Team at Me & My Sister… Barb Groves and Mary Jacobson.  Barb and Mary are fellow Moda fabric designers, but I got to know them both years ago when we were vending at an event.At the end of the day I was looking for someone to have some dinner with. Barb grabbed and said let’s find Mary and go have pizza! And so we did, and our friendship has bloomed!

Their fabrics are cheerful and bright, their quilt patterns are clever and fun to do. Plus they are fun to hang out with! Plus they have a wonderful Aurifil Thread Collection… yummy right?

I interviewed them on 11/3/14 and 6/6/11.. you can listen RIGHT at your computer to my podcast HERE

Pat Sloan Perfect Colors3

We continue our MONTHLY thread BOX giveaway (seriously folks… you could win a box of my thread which is over $120.00 value.. for making a quilt block… you have to join in!). We will pick one random winner that has made a  block from our 2014 designers and that random person receives a FULL BOX of my Aurifil thread as the prize! Winners are all contacted via Flickr email and posted at our FLICK GROUP HERE

Let’s get to know Barb and Mary!

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Aurifil 2015 May Designer of the Month Lynn Harris

Aurifil May 2015 Aurifil Designer Lynn Harris collage

Welcome to our 2015 Designer of the Month program,  I’m Designer/Radio show host PatSloan!

Our May mini is by Designer Lynn Harris of The Little Red Hen. Besides being a wonderful designer with her first book just out, she is an amazing photographer. What I love about Lynn’s work is the COLOR! She makes amazing quilts with loads of color and lots of resting area to see it. She also does great things with scraps, which is what her new book is all about.  I highly recommend you start following her website to see what life on the farm for a modern day quilter is all about!  In my interview we’ll get a glimpse of this and I tell you I’m hooked on Lynn’s designs and site!

Pat Sloan Perfect Colors3

We continue our MONTHLY thread BOX giveaway (seriously folks… you could win a box of my thread which is over $120.00 value.. for making a quilt block… you have to join in!). We will pick one random winner that has made a  block from our 2014 designers and that random person receives a FULL BOX of my Aurifil thread as the prize! Winners are all contacted via Flickr email and posted at our FLICK GROUP HERE

Let’s get to know Lynn!

Continue reading