Call For Kids To Create – An IKEA Drawing Competition

Kids 12 and under are invited to enter a Drawing Competition hosted by IKEA, where they draw their own soft toy!


Artwork of 20 lucky winners will be selected by voting, of which 10 will be turned into soft stuffed toys, to be sold at IKEA. There will also be three age group winners who will receive $25 IKEA gift certificates.  Drawings can be submitted online or in store, but need to be submitted by October 30th.


For more info on this challenge:

#EQ25 Celebration – Tutorials, Inspiration, and Prizes – October

The Electric Quilt Companyis celebrating their 25th Anniversary with monthly giveaways.  This month you can win a copy of EQ7 software or a bundle of HQ scissors and Light Strip from HandiQuilter.   QuiltShopGal is also helping to celebrate by way of sharing monthly EQ theme posts. I’m also thrilled that several blogging friends are also helping in the celebration, many of us sharing EQ theme tips, tutorials, as well as inspirational projects along the way.

MY TUTORIAL THIS MONTH: An exercise in Color and Design

The Orange Peel design is one that is fun as a traditional 2 color design, planned with 4-6 colors, or completely scrappy.  It is also a fun quilt to make using templates that can be created in EQ7, or acrylic rulers, die cutting machines, etc..    While it is fun to play with color in EQ software, you can also print coloring sheets to color your quilts with colored pens and pencils.


I love using EQ software to help plan out the size of my quilts, audition fabrics/colors, and much more.  Possibilities are truly endless, but today, I’m going to share a very simple tutorial as I simply want to encourage you.  My motto has been “15 minutes per day” and you’ll be amazed how much you can learn.


Many enjoy creating Orange Peel designs with gradient color changes, some with areas filled.  There is no right or wrong, just a matter of personal choice and creativity.  But, the power of EQ7 does make it easy to play and create a variety of design ideas.

While EQ7 comes with an extensive fabric collection, as well as colors, I’m also fond of EQ Stash downloadable fabrics.  And I’m absolutely thrilled that the most recent collection is 100% batiks.  I couldn’t resist purchasing it and creating with it.  Already looking forward to more “play time’ with this Stash collection.


How about creating a Modern Orange Peel Quilt Design ?

Of course, you need to launch EQ7.

From the main menu, click LIBRARIES > BLOCK LIBRARY > EQ Libraries > EQ7 Libraries > 01 CLASSIC PIECED > ORANGE PEELS and click on the “Flower Petals” block.








The Sketchbook will appear and you’ll want to be on the BLOCKS tab.


Click EDIT and you’ll be able to edit this block.


Click on the Color Tab.


Click on the Fabric Sketchbook to select the fabrics or colors that you wish to color your block.  I’m playing with some of the new Stash fabrics, for batiks. And I opted to use some Hoffman fabrics.   Did you know that the Hoffman “PFD”  fabric is a perfect white to use with their batiks?  Same fabric, just not died so your quilt will have a consistent feel to it.  It has become my “go to” white.


Click on the Paintbrush tool and then click on the fabric or color chip that you want to use.  Then you can click on the parts of your block which you want colored, as desired.




Once you have your block colored, the way you want, click the ADD TO SKETCHBOOK button.



How about changing the block design?  Simply click on the EASYDRAW tab.


Click on the Pick Tool.



Click on the arch of one of the petals and press your delete key.  Repeat for the other arch.


Click Add to Sketchbook.




Let’s do more editing to change up this block. Click back on the Easy Draw tab. Click the pick tool and click on another petal and click delete. (both sides of the curve)


After editing this block, as desired, click on Work on Quilt button.



Click on the Layout tab.



I set my layout options as:


Click on Layer 1 tab.




Now we’ll set our blocks on to our quilt top design.

Click on the set block tool



Your Sketchbooks Blocks will appear.


Simply click on the block in this sketchbook that you want to add to your quilt.  Use your mouse to click on the block that you wish to place it onto.

There are many more options that what I’m sharing in this simple tutorial, but you may want to use the Rotate Block tool.  It is easy to use, as once you click to engage this tool you can then click on any block on your quilt layout to rotate it.    Can you guess which blocks I rotated?  If you guessed the corner blocks, you are correct. I only drew one version of these blocks, but using the rotation tool gave me four different versions.



After you get the blocks in your quilt set the way your desired, remember to click the Add to Sketchbook button.  Easy Peasy.  I hope you’ll play with EQ7 and create your own version of the Orange Peel Design.  Again, you can make it a traditional two color design, multi-color, scrappy, or Modern.  Please share a picture of what you create on my Facebook page at:   



And, don’t overlook saving your project by clicking the SAVE icon.




As mentioned, this is a super easy peasy design using EQ7 and a fun way to play with fabrics and colors.  I hope it inspires you to play with EQ7 software.  And don’t forget, you’ll be amazed how much you can learn and how much fun you can have, just spending 15 minutes per day playing.



EQ and HandiQuilters have great prizes you could win this month, as part of the EQ 25th Anniversary Celebration: Wouldn’t it be fun to win a bundle of HQ Scissors and Light Strip from HandiQuilter or a copy of EQ7 this month?

For a complete schedule of events, as well as information on the amazing prizes and generous sponsors:


I’m also thrilled to have several blogging friends joining me today, to help celebrate.  As you may already be aware, many of us, will be sharing a EQ themed blog post on the 10th of every month this year, where you’ll find tips, tutorials, inspirational projects, as well as hopefully some fun quilty insights, as well as learn about how to win amazing prizes.

Yes, each month several blogging friends are releasing a post on the 10th of each month to help celebrate the EQ 25th Anniversary.  Along the way, you’ll find tips, tutorials, inspirational project and various EQ themed insights.  Here are some bloggers that I hope you’ll click thru to visit today:

Carol of Fun Threads Designs

Pamela of Pamela Quilts

Marian of Seams to be Sew.

You can find the Electric Quilt Company at:

Here are links to my prior posts for these monthly  #EQ25 celebrations, many include tutorials. And all include links to posts by blogging friends who are also sharing EQ tips, tutorials and inspirational projects on the 10th of each month, to help with the EQ 25th Anniversary Celebration:

Vintage Sewing Video

quack me ups by quiltshopgal

This video just quacked me up and I wanted to share it with you.  It was created to teach basic sewing and sewing machine use. “This is a very early Centron film… Produced Under the Technical Supervision of Thelma Weddel, Home Economist.” 

If you are having problems viewing this embedded video click this link to view it directly in Youtube:


Aurifil Releases New Thread Collections


I’m excited about the new Aurifil thread collections that are being released this Fall, with more to come at Quilt Market, and wanted to let you know about them.  They should be appearing in quilt shops and sewing centers soon, but as they are so new they may not know about them, so you may want to let them know about any collections you’d like to see them carry, assuming you don’t want them all.  LOL!  

Press Release from Aurifil:


Sue Marsh


Whistlepig Creek Productions founder Sue Marsh is known for her hand-drawn illustrations that reflect a sense of youthfulness, whimsy and fun. She has been creating and sketching characters since 1997 and recently partnered with RJR Fabrics to give her characters new life. Her fun, lighthearted collections of novelty prints appeal to both kids and the young-at-heart! Her debut Aurifil thread collection, Brilliant, is available in both large and small boxes and coordinates particularly well with Geekery (now in stores) and Monster Trucks (presenting at Fall Quilt Market).

Product #: SM50BC12 (LG),
UPC — 8057252106365
Product #: SM50BC10 (SM),
UPC — 8057252106358
Releases September, Ships in October (to stores)

Sheena Norquay


Scottish quilter, designer and educator Sheena Norquay is well known for her natural approach to design. She draws inspiration from the shapes, lines and colors of her surroundings. ”I am also interested in using quilted lines to create graceful movement, sculptural shapes and decorative patterns. Most of the lines are free machine quilted, a technique which is my specialty. It is fascinating how the surface of the quilt comes alive with the quilting.” Sheena is one of our heralded Aurifil Designers and we’re thrilled to present The Beach Collection & The Scottish Highlands Collection.

Beach Collection Product #: SN50BC12 (LG),
UPC —8057252112786
Scottish Highlands Collection, Floss Product #: SN30SH10 (SM)
UPC — 8057252112762
Scottish Highlands Collection, 50wt Product #: SN50SH10 (SM)
UPC — 8057252112779
Releases September, Ships in October (to stores)

Jackie Kunkle


Jackie Kunkel is a Designer, an Educator, a Shop-Owner (Canton Village Quilt Works) , and Author and now an Aurifil Designer. Her debut collection follows in the footsteps of her book, Splash of Color, in which she heralds the use of black & white and instructs readers how to combine a rainbow of bright, saturated colors with crisp black & white prints to make amazing quilts. Her range of 50wt threads is simply perfect to get started on your very own splash of color quilt!
Product #: JK50SC10 (SM)
UPC — 8057252112755
Releases September, Ships in October (to stores)

2017 Hoffman Challenge Collection


Aurifil is honored to partner with Hoffman Fabrics for the 2017 Hoffman Challenge. This annual contest was created to honor and recognize the talents of quiltmakers and sewists. The 2017 event will focus on Mastery, a brand new collection inspired by the Old Masters era of magnificant artworks created by illuminaries such as DaVinci, Michelangelo, Carvaggio, Rembrandt, and Leyster. The coordinating Aurifil Thread collection was hand-selected to highlight and accentuate the stunning large scale prints. For more information about the challenge, please click here.
Product #: HF5017HC12 (LG)
UPC — 8057252112748
Releases September, Ships in October (to stores)

Heather Ross


Heather Ross 6th collection with Windham Fabrics is Sleeping Porch, printed entirely on cotton lawn. Partner Heather’s signature style of whimsical illustrations with colors that are sure to stand out and quilters are destined to create projects with a wonderfully unique aesthetic. While her collections are often designed with kids in mind, or at least grown-ups who still have a lot of kid left in them, this line was designed with the quilter in mind. Heather’s coordinating Aurifil thread collection is a rich array of 50wt threads, perfect for creating new masterpieces.

Product #: HR50SP12 (LG)
UPC: 8057252112731
Releases September, Ships in October (to stores)

Christa Quilts


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!
Piecing and Quilt Collection, Neutrals Product #: CW50PQN12 (LG)
UPC — 8057252106327
Piecing and Quilt Collection, Colors Product #: CW50PQC12 (LG)
UPC — 8057252106310
Releases September, Ships in October (to stores)

Annie Smith


Annie Smith of Simple Arts has been known as the voice of the Quilting Stash podcast since 2005. She is an author, a designer and a Bernina ambassador and is presenting her debut Aurifil thread collection. Love is Spoken Here is offered in two stunning color ways, Summerset & Winterset. Both are full of Aurifil 28wt, Annie’s favorite for machine appliqué and coordinate with Annie’s stunning quilt patterns.
Love is Spoken Here, Winterset Product #: AS28LSHW10 (SM)
UPC — 8057252112724
Love is Spoken Here, Summerset Product #: AS28LSHS10 (SM)
UPC — 8057252112717
Releases September, Ships in October

For those attending Quilt Market, later this month, be sure to visit Aurifil in booth #1924.  You’ll find these new thread collections, as well as other new collections being released at market too!  


 Ok, I’m curious.  Of these new collections, do you have a favorite?


You can find Aurifil at:


When The Unexpected Happens And Life Changes In A Blink Of An Eye

Today I want to talk about a situation where the life, of any of us, can change in a blink of the eye.  Our world, as we know it can shatter quickly.  How do you get thru it?  How do others help? 

Our worldwide quilting community is a group of talented and giving people.  I’ve truly seen miracles happen in our community through the power of prayer, fundraisers to help those in need, as well as words of kindness and encouragement.  PR Angels often help to spread the word, and many find other great ways to help.  We each have a story, but today I want to share a story about an amazing quilter, teacher, and author who could use our prayers, positive thoughts, as well as support and encouragement in so many ways.

Karen Sievert is an Author, Teacher, Speaker and International Award Winning Longarm Machine Quilter.  


Karen is the author of two amazing books:

 “Better Together“, published by Martingale in  2010


Prairie Point Pizzazpublished by Martingale in 2011


This past year Karen and her husband Vince, moved into a beautiful log home in Bailey, NC.   This home was designed with plenty of space for Karen to design and quilt, as well as provide accommodations for 1-6 quilters, in an ideal and tranquil setting for intimate classes and retreats with Karen.  Sounds absolutely inviting to me.  Especially perfect for those that want to learn/improve their free-motion quilting skills to make quilts such as what Karen has:

Besides the move, besides her hectic teaching schedules, as well as working on more quilts to enter into quilt shows, she also had to go thru various hand surgeries.  But she pushed thru it with amazing style and grace.



On September 16th Karen and Vince lost their beautiful log cabin dream home to a fire.  They lost ALL their possessions, including years of making beautiful quilts, as well as her Award Winning Quilts!  Clearly, their life has changed with such a devastating loss.

While positive thoughts, prayers and words of encouragement are appreciated by Karin and Vince, a Go Fund Me program was launched by a friend.  It won’t replace all of their possessions, nor her quilts, but even little donations add up and help.  Here is a link for those that are able to make such a donation:


You can find Karen at:


Quack Me Ups – Whimsical Quilts

quack me ups by quiltshopgal

There are a lot of quilty quilts, events, and experiences that quack me up.  I’m always on the lookout, as I think we can all use some fun humor.  While I’d love to hear about your quack ups, today, I thought I’d share quilts that caught my attention for “quack ups”.



{above} “A Night At The Zoo”, was created  by Debra Crine.  She was inspired by artwork from Phil Lewis when she created this beautiful quilt that definitely caught my attention, while attending the Road to California Conference and Quilt Show, this past January.  It is a beautiful quilt that also quacked me up!


I hope you find something that brings you a chuckle today and every day.  Of course, I also hope you find time to enjoy and create too!  


New Books with #CreativeGoodness from Martingale – Plus Giveaways Sponsored by Martingale

I’m excited to be able to share insights with you today about some new books with #CreativeGoodness from Martingale.  I also want to share insights with you about some giveaways, sponsored by

Preserving History – Patchwork Patterns Inspired by Antique Quilts
by Julie Hendricksen

My Review:

This is a “must have” book for anyone who appreciates antique quilts, as well as a great book for anyone who enjoys patchwork.  While the quilts in this book showcase reproduction style fabrics, I believe the designs would also look great in modern fabrics, or just about any fabric you wish to use, making it another great book for those that may be looking for stash busting project ideas.

A Change of Seasons – Folk-Art Quilts and Cozy Home Accessories By Bonnie Sullivan


My Review:

A Change of Seasons is packed with cozy quilts and home accessories that make for perfect projects to decorate your home, as well as to make for gifts.  This is a “must have” for anyone whom enjoys primitive style decorating, as well as those that may want to make fun and fast seasonal projects.

The Big Book of Fat-Quarter Quilts – 66 Designs


My Review:

With 66 fun projects this book is an exceptional value.  Retail price works out to $0.42 per design.  This is a “must have” for any quilter looking for stash-busting projects, as well as those that want fun and fast projects.

A Knitter’s Know-How – 127 Techniques Every Knitter Needs to Know By Cap Sease


My Review:

This is a great resource for beginning knitters, as well as experienced knitters that are looking for tips and tricks to help finish projects.  This book is a technique book that does a fantastic job demonstrating with close-up photos and easy to follow instructions.


All of these books come with Martingale’s quality and value where they each have easy to follow instructions and great visuals, making them perfect for all levels of creativity (beginner to advanced).  I hope you get a chance to check out these books at your favorite quilt shop.  But if you don’t see them, let them know you are interested in them making these books available in their store.  They are such new books, the store may simply not be aware of them.  Of course, you can also check out these books online at Martingale, or Amazon.

Did I Mention Some Giveaway Opportunities?

There is still time to enter a giveaway hosted by QuiltShopGal where you could win a copy of the new The New Hexagon Perpetual Calendar – 365 Blocks  Katja Marek.  I’ll be randomly selecting a winner for this giveaway late Sunday, October 2nd.  Here is the link if you haven’t yet entered and would like to win this sweet perpetual calendar:

Martingale also has a giveaway this week where you could win a copy of Knitter’s Know How.


You can find Martingale at:

martingale logo   

Why Women’s Clothing Sizes Do Not Make Sense

Ever feel like you can’t trust the size of a clothing pattern, or confidence of purchasing pre-made clothes based on a particular size?  Seems that what might be a size 10 by one company is a size 8, 12 or 14 as defined by another company.  All so  confusing.  Here is a video that provides some great background info on how this all happened.  I hope you find it as interesting as I did.

If you are having problems viewing this embedded video, here is a link to watch it directly in Youtube:



RARE Science:The RARE Bear Project and a Charity Fundraiser

RARE Science is a non-profit research organization, that through a unique collaborative approach, works directly with patient families and foundations to find more immediate therapeutic solutions for children with rare disease.  Christina Waters is a medical geneticist who started this program which also provides handmade “RARE Bears” to children, around the world, with rare diseases.  There are approximately 200 million kids worldwide that have rare diseases – 35% of these kids do not live to see their 5th birthday. RARE Science is working to improve those statistics and change the lives of children with rare diseases.


Here is a video which shares insights about making these bears:

If you have problems viewing this embedded video, here is a link to watch it directly in Youtube:


Volunteers are needed to join the RARE Bear Army and there are a variety of ways you can help.

RARE Science is teaming up with The QuiltShow.comSpoonflower, Simplicity Patterns, Fairfield World and an army of volunteers to bring to life these wonderful companions for kids with rare diseases.  Volunteers of all skill sets to enlist in the #RAREBearArmy. For more information on how to get involved or if you would like to donate a bear to a child in need – please visit us at our website:


For those attending Quilt Festival/Houston there are a couple of opportunities where you can also help:

rare-bare-stuffing-partyConsider giving your feet a rest and helping to stuff a bear.  All supplies will be provided, but volunteers are needed to help stuff and finish bears.“Stuff – in”, called “A Beary RARE Affair” get together. On Friday, November 4th from 6 to 8pm, 200 participants will stuff a “bear skin,” mingle with celebrity bear makers and have a chance to win a BERNINA Simply Red sewing machine!  On display will also be our one of a kind collector Celebrity RARE Bears that will be part of a silent auction held during the Festival.  To RSVP for this event, sign up here:



The Quilt Show is hosting an Auction of Celebrity RARE Bears made by Becky Goldsmith, Jamie Fingal and Sue Bleiweiss during the RARE Bear Affair in Houston.  They’ll also be displayed in the RARE Science booth Nov 2nd – 6th.  Non-Attendees will be able to bid online at:

Volunteers are always needed to make RARE Bears using the Simplicty Pattern #C5461.  You can make complete bears, or the bear casing that gets stuffed by others.  Of course you can do this by yourself, but you may want to host your own RARE Bear Party and invite your quilting and sewing friends.  This would also make for a great guild event!  rarebearpattern

You can also donate fabrics, stuff bears that have been premade, cut fabric, as well as help fund materials.  Simply contact Rare Science and let them know how you would like to help and find out what might already be in place in your area for this program.  You should be able to find this pattern in any store that sells Simplicity patterns, but you can also order it online from Simplicity

Downloadable flyer with more info about the RARE Bear Project:

You can find Rare Science at:


Handi Quilter Webinar with Angela Walters – #QuiltBiz

I frequently get asked questions for “How to start a longarm business?”, as well as how to start a business, or  grow my business in general.  I’m also an avid researcher who is always looking for ways to help those in the business.  Needless to say, I was thrilled with a recent webinar, hosted by Handi Quilter, where Angela Walters shared her expertise and I wanted to use this post, to heighten awareness of this recorded webinar.  

I also want to share, that while the focus is on longarm business, I think there are many benefits of watching this video, if you are considering getting into the business, in just about any aspect of quilting or sewing.


If you have problems viewing this embedded video, here is  a link to watch it directly on Youtube:

You can find Angela at:

You can find Handi Quilter at,,

  Full Disclosure - Affiliates with QuiltShopGal