Friday, August 17, 2018

Midnight Poppies Virtual Trunk Show

We've had fun sharing Ann Lauer's Midnight Poppies collection with you this week! We hope you'll enjoy Ann's virtual trunk show of the quilts she has designed featuring her new fabrics. 

 "Love That Print" showcases two large prints in a quick and easy design. 
Click here to find the kit.

"Midnight Stars" - this one really sparkles! This two-block quilt is easier than it looks and shows off a large focal print as well. 
Click here to find the kit.

"Montana Summer" features on-point blocks. The pieced blocks are made from three-fabric strip sets, and the border showcases the iris border stripe. 
Click here to find the kit.

"Afternoon Delight" is made with fast flying geese, four-patches, and large focal print squares. 
Quick and easy! 
Click here to find the kit.

"Free Fall" is one of my most popular designs. The wall quilt version is assembled using quilt-as-you-go technique, and the colors blend beautifully together! 
Click here to find the kit.

"Poppy Toss" is a free quilt pattern available on Benartex's website. The centerpiece is the large poppy print, surrounded by strips of pieced stripes. Finish the quilt off with fussy-cut appliqued poppies!
Click here to download the pattern.
Click here to find the kit.

Click here to see the entire Midnight Poppies collection.
Click here to read our interview with Ann about Midnight Poppies. 
Click here to visit Ann's website and see her additional Midnight Poppies patterns.

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Thursday, August 16, 2018

Cats on Parade

Ann's Midnight Poppies collection may be hitting stores, but her previous line, Cat-I-Tude, is still going strong! Today we're featuring a quilt from Quilter's World that uses the Cat-I-Tude fabrics. 

Cats on Parade designed by Lisa Swenson Ruble
and machine quilted by Diane Oakes;
featured in Quilter's World Fall 2018

What attracted you to the Cat-I-Tude collection? 
I really love the paisley swirls! There's so much detail and depth in that fabric, and it ties the entire line together. It's also a fun challenge to design a quilt featuring fussy-cut blocks; I wanted a quilt that would highlight the cat blocks but also have interest in the background. 

How did you choose the coordinates to use? 
Aqua is my go-to color, so that was easy. I tried a digital version using green instead of the purple, but it didn't pop the way I wanted it to. I chose to use the cat blocks on black and the black tonal background to enhance the rich contrast of the colors.

Tell us about your design.
I've designed several quilts with a woven look. I like the over-under illusion, and the depth that it creates. I actually designed this quilt about a year before Ann's fabric came out but hadn't found the right collection for it yet. It seemed to work perfectly with these prints. 

Tell us about the machine quilting.
Diane Oakes has quilted several of my woven quilt designs, and I think she does a great job. She chooses one motif (and thread color) for each "weave," so for example the purple areas all have the same design. This helps to enhance the woven idea. She followed the paisley lines in the outer border and also quilted some of the details on the cat blocks. 

What do you like best about this quilt? 
Definitely the woven effect. I like that it creates the illusion of dimension. 

Click here to see the entire Cat-I-Tude collection by Ann Lauer.
Click here to read more about this quilt.
Click here to order the kit for Cats on Parade.
Click here to purchase the fall 2018 issue of Quilter's World.

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Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Debby Kratovil's Technique Tuesday: Using a Border Stripe

It's Technique Tuesday! Debby Kratovil from Debby Kratovil Quilts is here today to show us an idea for using the border stripe from Ann Lauer's Midnight Poppies collection. (Hint: it's a great focal sashing strip!) 

Here's Debby!

Lovely, lovely fabrics: Midnight Poppies

When Benartex invited me to design with them, I was sure I could come up with something. I was concentrating on that large border print. There is a black stripe on either side of it (shown in second picture) and I thought I could use one of my rulers to slice it up.

My approach is always simple: Make the fabric do all the work! 
I'll walk you through my design process.

When the fabrics arrived I was back to square one because my original plan wasn't going to work. Here are the fabrics I chose. I ended up not using the large poppy green and purple floral on the right. This will be incorporated on the back of the quilt.

Midnight Poppies with a selection of 7 coordinates

OK, Debby. Now what?

I always consult my own patterns and designs and figure out a way to rework them. Oh, yes. And I consult the "voices in my head" to see what vibes they are getting from the voices from the fabric. This is true; I'm not making this up! 

Here is my second plan, but I didn't have enough fabric of each print to get an even number of squares for symmetry. Dang! But I did know that I wanted to cut the four sections of border print and use them as vertical and horizontal sashings!

Midnight Poppies Draft 2

So, here is what I did - Plan 3! This is just the concept--I tweaked the design a bit, and you will see that scale of the prints makes the actual quilt turn out differently.

Midnight Poppies Off Center Log Cabin

First the steps:
1. Cut four 8-1/2" squares of 622-60 White Floral and one 8-3/4" square (for center unit).
2. Cut 3-1/2" strips of supporting fabrics to begin building my Off Center Log Cabin blocks (4 of them)
3. Row 1: One (5427-44 Green) 3-1/2" x 8-1/2" and one green 3-1/2" x 11-1/2" strip. Stitch as shown.

Start of Off Center Log Cabin
4. Continue adding strips, cutting for EACH block, the following:
  • Row 2 (5425-40 Sage Green): One 3-1/2" x 11-1/2" and one 3-1/2" x 14-1/2"
  • Row 3 (5424-44 Mosaic Petals Green/Purple): One 3-1/2" x 14-1/2" and one 3-1/2" x 17-1/2"
  • Row 4 (5425-09 Daisy Petals White): One 3-1/2" x 17-1/2" and one 3-1/2" x 20-1/2"
  • Row 5 - I was short on fabric and so used two: One 3-1/2" x 20-1/2" strip 5427-44 Green and one 3-1/2" x 23-1/2" strip 5426-50 (Criss Cross Dot Blue/Green)
Here's one block:
One Off Center Log Cabin: 23-1/2" x 23-1/2"

5. Make two blocks and join with a trimmed border strip (measures 8-3/4" wide including seam allowances). Here is the trimming of the border print. I allowed the LENGTH of 29" to stay until the very end.

Trim each side of the border print, allowing for 1/4" seams

6. Two blocks joined:
Two blocks joined and then border print trimmed to 23-1/2" to match the blocks.

7. Make two more blocks, but be careful of where you stitch the strips. Uh oh!

My Uh, Oh Block. Gotta remove that renegade white strip!

8. Add the 8-3/4" floral square to two remaining border strips:
Add center square to remaining two border strips
9. Join blocks and wide sashing strips; measure and trim the sashings at the very end.

10. Here is my 54" x 54" quilt top hanging in the breeze on my deck after a summer rain!

Midnight Poppies Off Center Log Cabin: 54" x 54"
Follow the cutting instructions as listed above. Here is the supply list for making the quilt as shown here. Backing and batting needs to be at least 3-4" larger around all sides for quilting.

Thanks, Debby, for showing us a great idea for using Ann's border stripe and those gorgeous poppy prints!
Click here to see Ann's entire Midnight Poppies collection.
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Monday, August 13, 2018

Ann Lauer's Midnight Poppies

Ann Lauer's poppies are back! Her new collection, Midnight Poppies, takes this iconic bloom bigger and better. The collection comes in green/purple and fuchsia/blue colorways. Scroll down to read our interview with Ann and learn more about the fabric line. 

What inspired the Midnight Poppies collection?
I love the showiness of poppies—they’re one of my favorite flowers. I wanted to do them again, but in a different way. We added in the Moonlit Poppies print, which is a really dense floral that we did as a tonal print.

What makes these poppies different?
I love these poppies because they’re realistic with artistic license. They have shading and shadowing that you don’t normally see in an actual flower—they’re prettier than nature!

Tell us about the texture that shows up in this collection.
The background in the large poppy focal print turned out beautifully. It has shaded dots, crisscrossed lines, and an occasional grid. It’s all in there without distracting from the flowers laid on top.

Talk to us about the color palette.
I just love jewel tones. That cobalt blue is gorgeous, and of course I’ve always loved purple. The green hovers between a sage and a lime color. There are four black/white prints in here as well--they range from light to dark, so you can play with just blacks and whites as well.

Can you tell us about some of your favorite prints?
The Mosaic Petals are one of my favorites in the whole collection. It’s a little angular and geometric—not as curvy—and it ties all the colors together. The Daisy Petals print uses that same idea, but in lighter shades, plus black and white.

The Criss-Cross Dot print is a multicolor version of Moonlight Texture. The random lines add a geometric feel. The colors are so deep and rich!

The Stripe combines the poppies with the Mosaic Petals and the Geometric Squares. It can be fussy cut for borders or for blocks.

Click here to see the entire Midnight Poppies collection. 
Click here for a sneak peek at Ann's Midnight Poppies quilt patterns. We'll be sharing a virtual trunk show later this week. 

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Thursday, August 9, 2018

Project Showcase

We always love seeing what quilters make from our fabrics! We recently received these photos from a quilting friend at Bernina. 
Check out what she made:

Janet Solarz used Zentastic fabric to make these four pieces:
Fobio Key Chain by Lazy Girl Designs
Mini Divas Wallet by Sew Many Creations
Make Me Up Before You Go-Go and Takeoff Tote by Dog Under My Desk

Janet also sewed Christa Watson's Squiggles quilt 
using Bumble Bumble prints:

And her final project: Then Came June's Sidewalk Chalk pattern 
using Blue Brilliance fabric:

Thanks for sharing, ladies!
If you have a project made with Benartex fabric that you'd like to share, please email us a photo at socialmedia23 (@)

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Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Space Odyssey

"Fly me to the moon and let me play among the stars..."
- Bart Howard, 1954

The Space Odyssey prints from Kanvas are out of this world! Three oversized prints are perfect for large focal blocks, pillowcases, and even quilt backings! 

The eight coordinates are smaller versions of planets, stars, and constellations. They'd be fun to use for a backpack, pajama pants, or to decorate a space-themed bedroom. 
Download our free quilt pattern, Out of This World, and look for the prints at your local quilt shop.
Click here to download the free quilt pattern.

Click here to see the entire Space Odyssey collection.
Click here to find the free quilt pattern.
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Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Fandangle Fun in August!

If you fell in love with Christa Watson's Fandangle prints during our blog hop a few weeks ago, great news! Get involved with some more Fandangle fun:

Fandangle Quilt Design Challenge
First, Electric Quilt software has teamed up with Benartex for a Quilt Design Challenge. During August, EQ users can download free digital images of Fandangle. Design a quilt using the software and enter it in the challenge for a chance to win the fabric to make your quilt! 

Click here to read all of the details. 
If you are on instagram, be sure to also share your designs using the hashtags #fandanglefabric and #eq8. 

Dot 'n' Dash Quilt Along

Christa is kicking off an 8 week quilt along on August 17 showing how to make a complete quilt from start to finish made from Fandangle fabric, using one of the quilt patterns from her current book, Piece and Quilt with Precuts.

The quilt as shown uses one Strip-pie of Fandangle plus several yards of either of the grays from Fandangle:

Click here to learn more about the quilt along.

Missed our earlier posts about Fandangle? Click here.

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Monday, August 6, 2018

Sew your own rainbow: Color Sphere

Instagram is packed with rainbow quilts--there's something so captivating about a palette full of red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple! Try your own hand at a rainbow design with our new Color Sphere collection. These cool prints are full of painterly stripes and swirls, and each color includes a variety of shades for fantastic depth and texture. And don't forget the metallic gold accents! 

Ready to sew a rainbow? Try our Color Wheel free quilt pattern.
Click here to download the free quilt pattern.

Click here to see the entire Color Sphere collection.
Click here to find the free quilt pattern.
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Thursday, August 2, 2018

Palermo in Action!

Earlier this week we showed you the Palermo collection--swirls, florals, and geometrics in both teal/blue and gray/black colorways. Today we're back with a couple ideas on how to use these gorgeous fabrics! 

Palermo was the featured fabric in Mr. B's Preview Pack Club and the Summer 2018 Fat Quarterly newsletter. This quarterly publication features sneak peeks at upcoming fabric lines, designer profiles, and a quilt pattern using the included Palermo 5" and 10" squares. 

Click here to find out how to sign up for Mr. B's Preview Pack Club and receive the Fat Quarterly newsletter. 

You'll also find a free quilt pattern featuring Palermo on our website: Kulun Mountains designed by Stephanie Sheridan and Linda Leathersich of Stitched Together Studios

Click here to download the free quilt pattern.

Click here to see the entire Palermo collection.

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Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Hello, Purple! Two Easy Quilts magazine designs

The Fall 2018 issue of Easy Quilts magazine featured two different quilts made by designers Joanie Holton and Melanie Greseth using Kanvas fabric collections. They're both done in varying shades of purple, and they're two totally different looks! Take a look at both and leave a comment letting us know which one catches your eye! 

Midnight Wind Chimes is an art quilt--a quick-to-stitch wall hanging featuring the elegant and dramatic Pansy Noir collection. 
"Midnight Wind Chimes" by Joanie Holton and Melanie Greseth;
featured in Easy Quilts Fall 2018

Tell us about this quilt design.
We wanted something different—a wall hanging that was a piece of art. We took a minimalist approach with the design, to give it a modern feel. This is a very accessible quilt for a beginner to put together.

What attracted you to the Pansy Noir collection?
The metallic aspect is so strong in the fabrics, and we wanted to create a design that would reflect that. It was really fun to play with these more contemporary prints!

How did you choose the background fabric?
We went through a lot of options! We started with the tonal prints in the collection, but realized that we needed something more eye catching. The metallic gold in this print, as well as the tight design, adds a dramatic feel to the quilt. We used the same print for the binding so the quilt didn’t have a framed effect.

Was it fun deciding on the fabrics for the pieced strips?
It was! We wanted to find a way to use the beautiful prints without overpowering the quilt. The waves are fun to use—we love how the purple waves look. And the butterfly print is so different—we fussy cut it to highlight different areas of the print.

What do you like best about this quilt?
Even though it’s a small quilt, the longer you look at it, the more details you notice. It’s very artsy to me.

Click here to see the entire Pansy Noir collection. 
Click here to see more from Melanie and Joanie.
Click here to find the kit for Midnight Wind Chimes.
Click here to find Easy Quilts Fall 2018. 


"Freshwater Pearls" uses the plum colorway of the Essence of Pearl collection and combines two classic quilt blocks into a unique pattern. 
"Freshwater Pearls" by Joanie Holton and Melanie Greseth;
featured in Easy Quilts Fall 2018

Tell us about the design.
It’s really easy to pass over traditional blocks for new designs. You see them always in the same layout. We challenged ourselves to figure out a new way to use some very traditional blocks. The color placement of the darker plum fabric creates a floating appearance for the square in a square.

Can you talk about how you used the large floral print in this design?
So often a large floral is the focal point, but we chose to focus on the darker plum in the blocks. We used the floral as more of a background, so it creates dimension without overpowering the design. I think it creates a wispy feel.

What attracted you to the Essence of Pearl prints?
Definitely the unique palette. That dark plum color really drew me in. It’s so dramatic!

What do you like best about this quilt?
I like how the dark plum changes the perspective of the blocks. It creates a new pattern and I like how it looks.

Click here to see the entire Essence of Pearl collection. 
Click here to find the Freshwater Pearls pattern.
Click here to find Easy Quilts Fall 2018

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