Welcome to laid-back quilting – with Layered Patchwork (+ fabric giveaway!)

Make quick quilts and love them lots: that’s living the prairie life!

Prairie Life

With Lynne Hagmeier’s new book, Prairie Life, you can eliminate some common pitfalls of conventional piecing, including tricky points, mismatched seams, and bulky seam allowances. How? Easy—with Lynne’s Layered Patchwork technique! Cutting shapes and topstitching them to a base fabric will help you get to the finish line faster. Simplify blocks that include triangles and even curved pieces like Orange Peels. Projects hold up wonderfully wash after wash.

From Prairie Life

Here’s what Lynne says about the Layered Patchwork look in her introduction to Prairie Life:

Layered Patchwork Churn Dash“Layered Patchwork simplifies piecing and adds a three-dimensional primitive look that I love, without any unsightly raveling. From a distance, a Layered Patchwork quilt looks like any traditionally pieced quilt. Up close, you see the topstitched edges of the pieces and can’t help but run your fingers across the softly frayed surface. The finished quilt has a lovely texture that only gets softer and cozier with each washing.”

Prefer traditional patchwork? You’ll find plenty of projects for those methods too! From gorgeous quilts to runners and pillows, you can infuse your home and hearth with the prairie-life look, no matter which sewing methods you like to use.

We asked Lynne (of Kansas Troubles Quilters fame) to answer a few pressing questions we had about her quilting life—read her answers below!

Lynne HagmeierStitch This!: Your latest book is simply gorgeous! What inspired you to write Prairie Life?

Lynne: Prairie Life is a collection of projects I’d been wanting to make for myself, some inspired by my first book, Cozy Quilts & Comforts. I also like having options for traditional piecing and Layered Patchwork in the instructions.

ST!: How did you come up with your clever Layered Patchwork technique?

Lynne: I was asked to teach on a quilting cruise and needed a quilt that was precut. The simplest thing to do with a Layer Cake and Charm pack? Layer, topstitch, slice, and sew a block. So easy!

ST!: Tell us about where the gorgeous photos from your book were taken.

Lynne: Prairie Life was beautifully photographed by Adam Albright, with the creative vision of Jennifer Keltner of Martingale, at our home in the country outside Bennington, Kansas. I was delighted with the way Jennifer could see my collections of antiques and old junk with a fresh eye, blending them perfectly with my quilts and projects. (The red barn on the cover is pretty much held together with baling wire and duct tape!)

From Prairie Life
From the cover of
Prairie Life

ST!: What’s your designing process like—patterns or fabrics first? Ideas on paper or on a computer?

Lynne: My brain works best doodling quilt blocks on graph paper first, then I transfer the design to the computer and import fabric swatches to see how the design will look. Usually, the fabric inspires the quilts. Once I’ve designed a new fabric line, I have months to ponder what projects to make while the mill is creating the fabric. But it’s not unusual to totally shift gears and change my plan after seeing the fabric in person.

ST!: What’s the most important part of the designing process for you, and what’s the most fun?

Lynne: The most important part of the design process for me is making sure what I see in my head translates accurately onto the pages of the instructions. The most fun is playing with new fabric!

Cypress Sampler
Cypress Sampler, made with traditional piecing

ST!: What’s inspiring you right now?

Lynne: Next year is my 20th anniversary of designing fabric for Moda. I’m focused now on a 20-block block-of-the-month king-size quilt that includes stories about my design and quilting journey over the past 20 years.

ST!: What’s on your sewing table right now?

Lynne: I’m piecing a new charm quilt for Quilt Market with 288 half-square triangles. I’ve been piecing and trimming as I’ve been working on other projects.

A peek at Lynne’s sewing space

ST!: As a quilter, what technique do you still want to learn?

Lynne: I’d like to spend more time hand stitching and learning decorative stitches. I need to take the time to prepare a project so it’s ready when I have a minute to relax and stitch.

ST!: What’s your #1 tip for beginning quilters?

Lynne: Practice a ¼" seam allowance until it’s second nature. The number-one problem for quilters in my workshops is not having consistent seam allowances. It’s vital so all of the pieces come together correctly.

Layered Patchwork Pillow Sleeve
Layered Patchwork Pillow Sleeve

Thanks for giving us a little look inside your “prairie life,” Lynne!

Our friends at Moda Fabrics wanted to celebrate Lynne’s new book right along with us, so they sent us a GINORMOUS stack of fat quarters from Lynne’s Country Road Flannel line—40 fat quarters in all!

To win the bundle and a copy of Prairie Life, tell us in the comments:

Prairie LifeHow often do you try new techniques (like Layered Patchwork)?

  • I try new techniques all the time—if it makes my work quicker and easier, bring it on!
  • I like traditional piecing, but trying new techniques is fun too.
  • I’m a little shy about trying new techniques—with traditional piecing I know exactly what to do!

We’ll choose a random winner one week from today and let you know by email if you win. Best of luck to all! And if you’re ready to bring a little of the prairie life into your home, order Lynne’s new book on our website and we’ll send you a link to download the eBook version for free right away!

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Thanks to all who entered the drawing! The winner is Michelle, who says:

“I like traditional piecing and techniques but I’m always up for try new things and learning new skills.”

We’ll email you about your prize, Michelle—congratulations!


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