1. Meet the Patchwork Divas and their fantastic Feathered Star quilts 😍

    19th-Century Patchwork Divas' Treasury of QuiltsA common love of antique quilts and reproduction fabrics brought them together. Now, 20 years after the 19th-Century Patchwork Divas block-exchange group was formed, their book The 19th-Century Patchwork Divas’ Treasury of Quilts shares the fun and friendship that’s part of a block exchange.

    We caught up with queen Divas (and coauthors) Betsy Chutchian and Carol Staehle at Quilt Market, and they were kind enough to walk with us through the special exhibit based on their book. Over the next several weeks we’ll be sharing videos about the classic quilt blocks that the Divas share in each chapter—and we’re starting with one of the pinnacles of patchwork: the Feathered Star block.

    Delectable Feathered Star quilt
    Delectable Feathered Star by Diva Sue Troyan

    Here’s how the book by the Divas works: each chapter is dedicated to a time-honored quilt block. Members of the Patchwork Divas exchanged blocks, and then they made quilts from their blocks. You get to see how members transformed their piles of patchwork into absolutely stunning quilts, each more spectacular than the last.

    We’ll let Betsy and Carol tell you more about their Feathered Star exchange in this video:


    Viewing this post in email? Click here to view the video.

    It’s fascinating how many different ideas the Divas came up with for their blocks! Let’s take a look at the antique quilt that inspired the Feathered Star exchange:

    Antique Feathered Star quilt

    Incredible.

    Here are all the traditional blocks that the Divas exchanged and share in their book:

    Divas' quilt-block exchanges

    In The 19th-Century Patchwork Divas’ Treasury of Quilts, you also get the Divas’ advice on how to start a successful block exchange with your quilting and sewing friends. (And the Divas should know how!) With these amazing quilts from the Divas, your group will never run short of inspiration.

    Which quilt block would you choose for a block exchange? Tell us in the comments!

    You might also like: A Divas’ guide to antique quilt-block patterns

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  2. Memories of making a memory quilt (get the tissues)

    PaperGirlIn March, PaperGirl (aka Mary Fons) put out a challenge to her followers: write about the last quilt you made. Our director of marketing (aka Karen Johnson) was up for the challenge.

    You see, Karen was in the midst of making a very special quilt. A quilt for her parents’ 60th wedding anniversary. A quilt that was going to capture her parents’ history—their family, their loves, their life. And when you’re creating a quilt like that, you want to share the story of its making. And so Karen did.

    After blessings from her parents and from PaperGirl—and from Karen, of course!—we’re sharing Karen’s story with you today. (And because her quilt is now stitched, signed, and delivered, we get to show you lots of photos of it, too!) Perhaps Karen’s story about her quilt will inspire you to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) and share the stories behind your quilts too.


    Karen JohnsonOne night in February, I woke from a sound sleep and sat straight up in bed. I have to make a quilt for my parents, I thought.

    You see, my parents’ 60th wedding anniversary is fast approaching. Their milestone is coming more quickly than I’d expected, especially for preparing a suitable gift. But now I had the perfect idea. I began planning a quilt in my head.

    It would be a memory quilt, with photos.

    I suddenly had an immense amount of work to do, and a very tight deadline. Since I work full time, it all needed to be done during weekends and evenings. It took three weekends just to gather all the photos. Many came from my brother and were already digital, but many more were safely tucked away in my storage unit, and they needed to be sorted, selected, and scanned.

    I scanned and printed the photos onto fabric-transfer sheets (I used these)—and then I read the instructions. Apparently, printing colorfast photos on fabric is a two-step process. Over two weeknights, every available surface in my small apartment was covered with fabric-transfer sheets. All needed to be heat-set, cooled, and then rinsed, dabbed, and heat-set again.

    I’ve always loved these photos, but making the quilt brought me even closer to them, and of course, to the people in them. I handpicked each photo for its meaning to my parents and to our family. I carefully ironed and washed each fabric-transferred photo, and then ironed them again. Each fabric photo was cut by hand, ensuring no one’s ears were chopped off by my rotary blade.

    Finally, I began to piece the quilt together, planning the layout as I went. First was my parents’ wedding photo: front and center. I surrounded the beautiful old photograph with strips of fabric and pressed the seams away from their smiling faces. Then, I added their baby pictures. My baby pictures. My brother’s baby pictures. My daughter’s baby pictures. As the quilt grew, so did my memories of every stage of my life, through my parents’ eyes and through the pictures.

    This quilt is filled with meaning. Joy, laughter, and sadness for those who are no longer with us. Graduations, weddings, and other milestone moments. There’s one photo where my dad has his hand on my mom’s shoulder in a quiet moment, when they didn’t know a camera was near. Love shining through. The forced smiles in many of the posed shots—everyone hating something about their face. More smiling babies, messy toddlers, a first missing tooth, bad haircuts, old friends. Life. My family’s life.

     

    I don’t often spend time with these photos. They’re usually tucked away and aren’t regularly appreciated. A quilt will change that.

    The quilt will soon be off to a long-arm quilter and I won’t be carefully ironing my brother’s smiling face any more. In a few short weeks it will be in my parents’ hands, and likely hang on a wall in their living room (though I’d prefer they snuggle under it). We’ll all admire it, but never again will I feel so close to those photos. So involved with them.

    It’s a special thing we quilters do when we make a quilt for someone we love. But toss in precious photos and it becomes something else entirely. More than a photo album, more than a quilt. A family. A memory. A quilt.

    As I snap myself out of my reverie, I realize I will be with many real-life family members as we gather to celebrate my parents’ 60th anniversary. And we’ll take more photos.


    Which quilt might you write about?

    • One that you made and gave away
    • One that you’re making right now
    • One that’s still a twinkle in your eye

    Tell us in the comments—and Karen, thanks for sharing your story.

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  3. 🏡 A house quilt-block pattern for every home (must see, sew cute) + giveaway!

    Do you love House blocks? We love House blocks so much, we put one in our logo! That’s why we want you to make yourself at home as we introduce the fourth book in our "Block-Buster Quilts" series: I Love House Blocks!

    Block-Buster Quilts: I Love House Blocks

    Create quaint cottages, smart schoolhouses, trendy townhouses, big barns, and even houses in the ’burbs—and you know it wouldn’t be home sweet home for quilters without a Log Cabin. Whatever your vision of the perfect home is, you’ll find a design to inspire your construction here!

    House quilt block pattern
    A town full of house blocks to choose from!

    With I Love House Blocks, you’ll stitch home-grown designs from Carrie Nelson, Corey Yoder, Sherri McConnell, Melissa Corry, and more. You’ll even find instructions for making two simple House blocks that you can resize and remodel to create the house of your dreams, all with your favorite building materials—fabric!

    Here’s a peek at the some of the house quilts you can create:

    Sherbet Town quilt
    Make a Sherbet Town quilt in solids with Corey Yoder.

    Block Party quilt
    Throw a Block Party with Sherri Falls.

    Tiny Town quilt
    Stitch a Tiny Town with Carrie Nelson (finished quilt: 22″ × 25¾").

    Neighborhood quilt
    Sew an ode to your Neighborhood with Sherri McConnell!

    Click here to see more fun house quilts you can create in I Love House Blocks.


    Block-Buster Quilts: I Love House BlocksGIVEAWAY! We’ve got an eBook copy of I Love House Blocks to give as a housewarming gift 🙂 to one lucky winner today! To enter yourself in the drawing, tell us in the comments:

    What kind of houses would you build in fabric first?

    • Houses in the city: that’s where all the fun is!
    • Houses in the country: I prefer the relaxed pace.
    • A version of my neighborhood, using the customizable blocks in the book.

    We’ll choose a random winner one week from today and let you know by email if you win. Good luck! And remember, when you purchase I Love House Blocks at ShopMartingale.com, you’ll get to instantly download the eBook version for free.

    Explore more books in our "Block-Buster Quilts" series:

    I Love Log Cabins I Love Nine Patches I Love Churn Dashes

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  4. Anything but pointless: how to keep triangle points pointy 🔺🔻🔺

    If you struggle with keeping the points of your triangles pointy when sewing them into your quilt blocks, Pat Sloan has a simple solution for you—and it works for any type of triangle piecing.

    Union Square quilt
    Union Square quilt from
    Pat Sloan’s Teach Me to Sew Triangles

    All you need are two pins and Pat’s triangle tips below to get pointy points that won’t get lost in your seams. Follow along and you’ll never be pointless again!


    Pat SloanPreserving the Points
    Excerpt from Pat Sloan’s Teach Me to Sew Triangles

    After taking the time to sew crisp and consistent triangles, it would be a shame to lose your points in the seams of your blocks. By following a few helpful hints, you can easily maintain sharp points when sewing the units together.

    1. Begin with units that have been sewn and trimmed to the correct dimensions. If one or more of the units is not the correct size from the start, the problem will only multiply when you sew them together. Using a clear gridded ruler (not the grid on the cutting mat), measure each unit to be sure it’s the correct size.

    2. Place the two units to be joined right sides together. Whenever possible, arrange the units with the intersection facing up so you can see it as you stitch. After lining up the units, place a pin directly before and after the intersection rather than directly at the intersection. This secures the layers and makes it easy to remove the pins without disturbing the precise alignment point.

    Triangle quilt tips

    3. Begin stitching the units, but note that an exact 1/4″ seam-allowance width will actually guide the needle directly into the triangle point. To keep a sharp triangle point, it’s important to account for the bulk of the fabric fold along the seamline, also known as “turn of cloth.”

    Triangle quilt tips

    If the seam allowance is too wide, the point will be chopped off when you press open the units. Save the point by sewing slightly outside of the intersection, just a thread or two into the ¼" seam allowance.

    Triangle quilt tips

    4. Press the units flat before unfolding them to warm the fabric and set the stitches. Open the units and press the seam allowances away from the triangle point to reduce the bulk underneath it. Notice how the point lines up with the seamline without getting lost within it.

    Triangle quilt tips


    Get tons more triangle tips from Pat in her book Pat Sloan’s Teach Me to Sew Triangles—13 triangle techniques and 12 terrific triangle quilt patterns await you! Get Pat’s trio of “Teach Me” books and expand your quilting skills, which will also (we promise!) expand your quilting fun.

    Pat Sloan's Teach Me to Machine Quilt Pat Sloan's Teach Me to Sew Triangles Pat Sloan's Teach Me to Applique

    Do you insist on pointy points, or are you a “done is better than perfect” kind of quilter who can live will flat-top triangles here and there? Tell us in the comments!

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  5. Know before you sew: best fusible interfacing for bags

    There are SO many bags we want to sew—do you feel the same?


    Bags from
    Big-City Bags, Windy City Bags, and Style and Swing

    With the right pattern, you can sew anything from backpacks and suitcases to purses, clutches, and handbags that rival designer bags from department stores. (And better still, you can sew them with your favorite quilting fabrics!) But there’s one thing you’ll need before you sew: a little know-how. So today we’re shedding light on what some might see as a bag-making mystery: how to choose the best fusible interfacing for bags.

    Author Sara Lawson is a rock-star in the sew-your-own-bags world—she’s passionate about her craft and she’s worked hard to make it easy for you to sew beautiful bags with body and structure, with all the retail details the bags from your favorite shops have. Today we’re sharing an excerpt from her latest book, Windy City Bags, that will introduce you to which fusible interfacings do what, and why they’re Sara’s favorites.

    Save 40% when you order any of these three bag-making books today (and as always, earn free shipping to the US and Canada when you spend $40 or more):

    Save 40% on select bag books

    Create bags that will turn heads and invite the question: where did you get that bag? Won’t they be surprised when you tell them you made it yourself!


    Sara LawsonOne of my favorite topics is interfacing; you really can’t make a bag without it. Interfacing makes up 25% of my fabric stash . . . no lie! It’s one of those things that you just need to have on hand at all times, because you’ll use it in almost every project.

    Most of my favorite interfacings are fusible. When fusing interfacing to your fabric, always use a pressing cloth to protect the fabric from excessive heat and keep the adhesive off your iron. Always place the bumpy or tacky side of the interfacing against the wrong side of the fabric.

    FUSIBLE THERMOLAM PLUS (PELLON TP971F)

    I absolutely love Thermolam Plus, a needled fleece that is denser and flatter than generic fusible fleece. When I’m making a bag or other accessory, I like it to have body; even for a simple tote bag, just two layers of fabric is too thin for me. This is a matter of personal preference, but I want my bags to have some substance and to be able to carry 20 pounds without tearing at the bottom. I use Thermolam Plus fused to the bag’s exterior fabric, sometimes in combination with either Shape-Flex or fusible fleece fused to the bag’s lining fabric.

    Thermolam Plus, once fused, leaves the fabric looking nice and smooth. Test a small piece on your exterior fabric. Depending on your iron, you may need to apply heat longer than the manufacturer recommends, but be careful not to damage the fabric. Sometimes I leave the iron in place up to double the recommended time.

    Festival Bag
    Festival Bag from
    Windy City Bags

    SHAPE-FLEX (PELLON SF101)

    I use Shape-Flex, a fusible woven interfacing, in all of my bags. It’s the most important interfacing in my stash, and I rely on it for a variety of uses. I fuse woven interfacing to every pocket I make, and I use it to reinforce the area around a zipper.

    Once fused, Shape-Flex gives quilting-weight cotton the sturdy feel of a home-decor or canvas-weight fabric. Place the rough, tacky side against the fabric’s wrong side for fusing. Shape-Flex is perfect as a stand-alone interfacing in a pouch or other small project, or you can combine it with other interfacings.

    Trendy Hipster Bag
    Trendy Hipster Bag from
    Style and Swing

    PELTEX SEW-IN (PELLON 70)

    This stiff interfacing is good for adding firm body without too much thickness. Because it’s a sew-in interfacing, it won’t fuse to your fabric. You can baste the interfacing to the fabric ⅛" inside the seam allowance, but I prefer this alternate method: Cut one piece each of Shape-Flex and Peltex Sew-In the same size as the pattern piece. Trim ½" from the edges of the Peltex Sew-In. Center the Peltex Sew-In on the wrong side of the fabric and then place the Shape-Flex on top with its fusible side down. When you fuse the Shape-Flex, it will seal the Peltex Sew-In to the fabric along the ½" edges. Using a smaller piece of Peltex Sew-In also reduces the bulk of the seam allowance.

    Wonderland bag
    Wonderland Bag from
    Big-City Bags

    DÉCOR BOND (PELLON 809)

    When there are bag panels or handles that need to look stiff without crinkling at folds and creases, this is the interfacing to use. My favorite application is to use this interfacing in two layers. First, I fuse a layer of Shape-Flex against the wrong side of my fabric, and then I add two layers of Décor Bond, cutting the Décor Bond ½" smaller on all its edges to keep bulk out of the seam allowances. One or two layers of Décor Bond will help a bag stand up by itself, but without quite as much stiffness as you’ll get with Peltex Sew-In.

    Jump-Start Duffel Bag
    Jump-Start Duffel from
    Windy City Bags

    There are no hard-and-fast rules for using interfacing. I suggest that the best way to learn more about interfacing is to use it in all of your projects. Tweak your interfacing choice based on your personal preference: what kind of shape are you interested in, how much stiffness, what kind of body? There are unlimited possibilities!


    Find all the bag-making know-how you need (along with Sara’s favorite interfacing of all) in Sara’s books. And take advantage of these three books on sale today—it’s the perfect time to start stitching a special bag for summer fun!

    Windy City Bags Style and Swing Big-City Bags

    What kind of a bag maker are you?

    • I’m a beginner and excited to try.
    • I’ve sewn a few and I want to sew more.
    • It’s an obsession—you can never have too many bags!

    Tell us in the comments!

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  6. Spectacular quilts made with solid fabrics: Rock Solid is here! (+ fabric giveaway)

    Got solids? Want solids? We guarantee that when you see the fresh, imaginative quilts in Rock Solid—all made with Robert Kaufman Kona Solids—you’ll want to create with every color!

    Rock Solid

    Whether you want to use just a few colors or paint a rainbow, Rock Solid will help you learn how to successfully use solid fabrics. And if you’re already a stasher of solids, this book will quickly become your go-to resource for patterns that pair perfectly with them.

    Solomon Stars quilt
    Solomon Stars by Anita Grossman Solomon

    One of the best parts of Rock Solid—aside from the star-studded designer lineup—is that you can create any quilt in the book exactly as shown. How? We’ve included the names of the Kona colors each designer used in her quilt! From Canary and Bonsai to Honeysuckle, Flame, and Pepper, you’ll be able to easily find each Kona color (303 to be exact) at your local quilt shop or online. Of course, you can opt to color in your Rock Solid quilts any way you like!

    Spectrum quilt
    Julie Herman’s Spectrum quilt uses 30 different colors of Kona solids—a true rainbow!

    And that star-studded lineup? Get inspired by Christa Watson, Heather Jones, Elizabeth Dackson, Angela Walters, Debbie Grifka, and more.

    Lanterns quilt
    Lanterns by Christa Watson

    Here’s a quick glimpse of all the innovative quilts you can create with Rock Solid:

    Click here to see the quilts in slow motion 🙂

    Our friends at Robert Kaufman were kind enough to send a terrific (and tall!) giveaway bundle of Kona Solids to celebrate the release of Rock Solid—and of course we’re adding a copy of the book to the goody pile!

    Even better: along with Robert Kaufman, today we’re giving away extra bundles and books on Instagram too! Head to Martingale’s Instagram and Robert Kaufman’s Instagram and throw your hat in the ring—that’s a total of three chances to win.

    Purchase your print copy of Rock Solid today and download your free eBook right away—you can start a new project just minutes from now!

    What does your stash of solids look like?

    • Every color of the rainbow!
    • My favorite colors only (so far) . . .
    • I’m making room for a stash of solids right now!

    Tell us your answer in the comments to be entered into the drawing—we’ll choose a random winner one week from today and let you know by email if you win!

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  7. Patriotic patchwork: celebrating the Red, White, and Blue

    Patriotic Dreams PillowSummer is here—hooray! We all look forward to fun in the sun, but here in the USA we also enjoy celebrating our country’s independence on the 4th of July. Picnics, barbeques, fireworks, and oh YES, a day off!

    If you’re in need of some new holiday decorations, a new picnic quilt, or maybe just a little inspiration for a Quilts of Valor quilt, read on!

    How cute is this little number? One red-and-white charm pack plus some extra red fabric and a bit of blue plaid is all you need for this easy-peasy table topper.

    Teatime quilt
    Teatime quilt from
    Moda All-Stars: Lucky Charm Quilts

    Sometimes simple really is better! The centered placement of rows of blue-and-white four patches on a red background is so effective. This quilt requires three charm packs plus a background fabric and a striped binding fabric, and it fits the guidelines for a Quilts of Valor quilt. Imagine the background fabric in a deep patriotic red—so pretty!

    Tire Tracks quilt
    Tire Tracks from
    Moda All-Stars: Lucky Charm Quilts

    If you have some red and blue 2½" strips hanging around waiting for a project, this quilt will fill the bill nicely! Imagine this one draped over your furniture for a nice pop of patriotic color.

    Porch Swing quilt
    Porch Swing from
    The Big Book of Strip Quilts

    More strippy goodness! Triangles cut from strip sets make this complicated-looking quilt super easy.

    Fat Man's Squeeze quilt
    Fat Man’s Squeeze from
    Strip-Smart Quilts

    Short on time (aren’t we all)? It doesn’t get any more patriotic than the American flag, and this quick-to-stitch version measures just 12″! So, no matter how small your home is or how little time you have to decorate, you can still show off your love for the Red, White, and Blue.

    Leo's Star quilt
    Leo’s Star from
    Oh Glory!

    Does it get much more “4th of July” than stars and pinwheels? This little table topper gives you both and could be stitched up in an afternoon!

    Stars and Stripes table runner
    Stars and Stripes from
    Oh Glory!

    For more fabulously patriotic ideas, take a look at the rest of the projects from Oh Glory!.

    I just couldn’t let this patriotic post go by without showing off this show-stopping stunner by Kim Diehl. If you can get THIS one done by the 4th, well, let’s just say you’re a much speedier quilter than I am!

    Liberty Star quilt
    Liberty Star from
    Simple Friendships

    What’s YOUR 4th of July decorating style? Do you go all-out, use little touches here and there, or not decorate at all? (Hey, we know we have lots of readers from outside the US!) Tell us in the comments!

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  8. NEW: downloadable patterns for yarn lovers! (as low as four bucks each)

    We are SO excited to announce our line of knitting and crochet ePatterns today! This curated collection of ePatterns has been carefully selected from some of our best-loved books and meticulously edited for clarity and ease. Best of all? They’re instantly downloadable for your knitting and crochet pleasure!

    You’ll get a sampling of Martingale knitting patterns and crochet patterns from a variety of books—and today’s featured patterns are just the beginning! We’ll be rolling out more ePatterns each month, and you’ll see them first, right here at our Stitch This! blog. And if you’re a Ravelry member, you’re in luck—you can purchase any of our knit and crochet ePatterns on Ravelry and add them to your library too!

    And now, please let us introduce you to the first eight ePatterns in our yarn-tastic lineup!

    Garter Love shawl
    Jen Lucas’s Garter Love Shawl
    is all about celebrating the beauty of the beloved garter stitch. The simple body of the shawl transitions into the lace edge, where garter stitch is the star. Get the ePattern for $6.50 or buy on Ravelry.

    Rosebuds for My Baby blanket
    Denise Black and Sandy Scoville’s Rosebuds for my Baby Blanket
    offers a new twist on a classic crochet motif: pretty rosebuds grow from each granny square. What a treasure for Baby and Mom alike! Get the ePattern for $4.99 or buy on Ravelry.

    Sleek-Line Sweater pattern
    Faina Goberstein and Dawn Leeseman’s Sleek-Line Sweater
    is the perfect gift for a guy who loves sweaters and style! The broken-rib stitch creates a noticeable but understated texture and gives the sweater a rich, luxe look. Get the ePattern for $6.99 or buy on Ravelry.

    Nautical Twisted Rope Scarf
    Sheryl Thies’s Nautical Twisted Rope Scarf
    is reminiscent of bulky coils of rope you might come across near an ocean shore. A bold cable pattern appears complex, but no worries—with Sheryl’s step-by-step instructions, it works up quickly. Get the ePattern for $3.99 or buy on Ravelry.

    High Country Wrap pattern
    Carol Rasmussen Noble’s High Country Wrap
    is wide, warm, and long enough to easily stay put around your shoulders. Made up in alpaca lace-weight yarn, this stole is perfect as an extra-cozy layer any time of year. Get the ePattern for $5.99 or buy on Ravelry.

    Colorwork Chullo
    Donna Druchunas’s Color-Work Chullo
    is perfect for a winter trip to the ski slopes or the shopping mall. The ear flaps are knit flat and the body of the hat is knit in the round. A two-color Fair-Isle knitting technique makes it 100% windproof; the kitty-cat motifs make it 100% cute. Get the ePattern for $4.99 or buy on Ravelry.

    Briargate shawl
    Jen Lucas’s Briargate Shawl
    is made with squishy sock yarn—and two skeins are all you need! Pair your two favorite colors, or the faves of a friend, and knit up a dramatic statement piece. Get the ePattern for $6.50 or buy on Ravelry.

    Turtle Lunch Tote
    Ana Paula Rímoli’s Turtle Lunch Tote
    provides an adorable way to carry lunch to school or work every day. What child (or child at heart) wouldn’t love to greet this friendly crocheted turtle at mealtime—especially when he’s carrying a hearty lunch and maybe a goody or two? Get the ePattern for $3.99 or buy on Ravelry.


    We can’t wait to show you what knit and crochet ePatterns are coming up—stay tuned! And if you’ve never knitted or crocheted before but want to try, pick up our know-it-all books on both topics and get started on a new creative journey!

    A to Z of Knitting A to Z of Crochet

    What kind of patterns would YOU like to see in our new line for knitters and crocheters: sweaters, shawls, socks, toys? Tell us in the comments!

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  9. Wish list day! Layer Cakes, baby fun, calendar girls, and more (+ giveaway!)

    Whoo-hoo, it’s Wish List Day! We’re counting down to the next batch of beautiful Martingale books coming in July—tell us which new release is your favorite and you could win it!

    Subscribe to our Stitch This! blogSubscribe to our blog and you’ll always be first to see new Martingale quilt books, plus special sales, freebies, tutorials, and more.



    Sew Many NotionsSew Many Notions
    Wonderful Wool Appliqués, Simple Stitcheries, and More

    Debbie Busby

    Thread love, needle love, button love—sewing love! Profess your love of sewing with warm-and-fuzzy projects that are quick to put together and fun to display or give. Each sewing-themed project is perfectly portable for on-the-go stitching, and author Debbie Busby (of Wooden Spool Designs fame) shares all her tips for appliquéing with wool and embroidering in her primitive style. Stitch wall hangings, pincushions, a sewing kit, framed stitcheries, plus an entire collection of tomato-themed sewing notions (SEW cute)! You’ll love making and giving these sewing-inspired gifts to all of your sewing friends—the sweet embroidered sayings about sewing will tug at their heartstrings, and yours. Sew Many Notions arrives July 5.

    From Sew Many Notions
    From
    Sew Many Notions

    See more from Sew Many Notions >


    A Piece of CakeA Piece of Cake
    Sweet and Simple Quilts from Layer Cake Squares

    Peta Peace

    Have your cake and quilt it too! Go beyond the style of typical Layer Cake designs and transform those yummy squares into fresh, scrappy quilts that are simple to sew and spectacular to show off. Wait until you see Peta’s fun quilt motifs: spools and bows, hearts and stars, and much more. And clever tips for mixing colors to get Peta’s light and playful look? That’s just icing on the cake! A Piece of Cake arrives July 5.

    Modern Spools quilt
    Modern Spools from
    A Piece of Cake

    See more from A Piece of Cake >


    Baby Quilts for BeginnersBaby Quilts for Beginners
    Easy to Make, Fun to Give

    Compiled by Karen M. Burns

    Know a beginning quilter? Already a beginner? Want to be a beginner? Ask any quilter and they’ll tell you: a baby quilt is the perfect place to begin! Learn to quilt with some of the best designers in the business: Kim Diehl, Kimberly Jolly, Sue Pfau, Amy Ellis, and more. They’ve chosen simple patchwork blocks that come together quick, color choices you can easily emulate, and designs so adorable, they’ll be treasured by the whole family! If you know a beginner, introduce them to this book. And if you’re a beginner, welcome—let’s get started! Baby Quilts for Beginners arrives July 5.

    From Baby Quilts for Beginners
    Baby Quilts for Beginners: $19.99. Baby feet on a brand-new baby quilt: priceless!

    See more from Baby Quilts for Beginners >


    That Patchwork Place 2018 Quilt CalendarThat Patchwork Place 2018 Quilt Calendar
    Complete Instructions for Each Project

    A new year is coming—which means there’s a whole new crew of  “calendar girls” in our popular annual wall calendar! Preserving History author Julie Hendricksen graces the cover in 2018. Which designers were chosen to take the remaining 11 coveted spots? Buy the calendar (order early—we sold out last year) to see them all! As always, the calendar includes a pullout booklet containing complete instructions for making all 12 projects. Our 2018 calendar arrives July 5.

    From the That Patchwork Place 2018 Calendar
    From left: Pat Sloan, Jo Morton, and Kate Henderson are 2018 calendar girls too!

    See more from the 2018 calendar >


    Which new book or calendar would jazz up your July? Tell us in the comments and you could win it when it’s released! We’ll choose a random winner one week from today and let you know by email if you win.

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  10. Celebrate International Picnic Day with these fun picnic quilt ideas

    Raise your hand if you knew that International Picnic Day was a thing.

    Why didn’t you tell us? We love picnics!

    I made a simple take-along quilt for my husband more than 15 years ago—little did I know we’d enjoy it as much as we have. We’ve taken the quilt to outdoor concerts, indoor theatres, and lots of picnics in the park. It’s traveled with us from the forest to the beach and back again. The quilt lives in the back of our car, always rolled up and waiting for the next adventure. We literally don’t leave home without it!


    I embroidered some of my husband’s favorite things on muslin, and then set the embroidered squares in between scrappy Nine Patch blocks.

    So the vote is in: YOU need a picnic quilt! Below are a few fun ideas for whipping up a picnic quilt that’s simple, quick, and easy to wash and dry by machine. Don’t be afraid to take your quilts outdoors—just be prepared! Here are a few tips for quilts roaming alfresco:

    • From Farm Girl QuiltsDon’t worry about a spill here or a little dirt there while you’re picnicking; but do treat stains upon your return home.
    • Don’t stress about the little things: is the binding coming undone, or maybe a piece of patchwork is coming un-patched? Find a quick and creative way to mend areas that need it (more patchwork comes to mind!) and your picnic quilt will be ready for action again.
    • Don’t miss the opportunity to build memories into a quilt you make, even if it ends up with some wear and tear over time. When you hear a friend or family member say, “Don’t forget the quilt!” on your way to an adventure, I promise your heart will soar.

    Now, on to our selection of quilts perfect for picnics—all generously sized to accommodate a crowd!

    Prairie Picnic quilt set
    Grab your Prairie Picnic quilt, pack up your coordinating Prairie Picnic tote, and head outdoors for some quality time with Mother Nature. Find the patterns in
    Here Comes Spring (finished size: 70½" x 70½").

    Log Cabin quilt
    Easy strips, classic design, and the warm colors of summer—get back to the basics with a patchwork Log Cabin quilt for picnic season! We love the uneven logs added to the centers of the bright blocks. Get the pattern for this Frolic quilt in
    Seems Like Scrappy (finished size: 72½" x 72½").

    Wish upon a Crazy Star quilt
    Use this Wish upon a Crazy Star quilt as a home base during an evening picnic; then cuddle up in this star-studded quilt as you watch the sky start to twinkle. Find the pattern in
    Crazy at the Cabin (finished size: 62½" x 74½").

    Rainbow Twist quilt
    BIG blocks and easy strip piecing means you can have this quilt ready for picnic weather in no time. The windmill-style blocks and rainbow colors remind us of the great outdoors!
    Find the Rainbow Twist pattern in Striking Strip Quilts (finished size: 72½" x 72½").

    All About Strips
    This quilt was designed to show off large-scale prints—and 20″ blocks make the top go together zip-zip. The floral prints in this example are a perfect backdrop for a relaxing day outdoors. Find the Good Fortune pattern in
    All About Strips (finished size: 80½" x 80½").

    We hope you enjoyed our picnic-quilt ideas! Where will you take your picnic quilt first?

    • To a fun picnic at the park.
    • To a relaxing day at the beach.
    • To a campout in the mountains (those mornings can be a bit chilly!)
    • On our summer vacation!

    Tell us in the comments!

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