Fat Quarter Love 3 and Precut-palooza!

design, fabric, quilting, sewing

All this week Benartex is leading Precut Project Hop on their social media platforms with fabric designers and bloggers from all over sharing their favorite patterns made with precuts and tips for working with them. Amazingly the Precut Project Hop is timed perfectly for the arrival of our latest publication Fat Quarter Love 3. Some of the projects feature only fat quarters and some pair fat quarters with additional yardage used for sashing or as a field fabric. We love the versatility of fat quarters and find them the easiest to work with among all precuts. One of the great things about precuts is that you can get a wide variety of prints without having to buy more yardage than you need.

In addition Benartex is sponsoring a giveaway during the hop to celebrate National Quilt Month. On both Facebook and Instagram you’ll find details through March 27 with the winners announced March 28.  The Grand Prize is an Ever Sewn sewing machine and there will be two 1st prizes of three precut fabric bundles with one winner each on Facebook and Instagram. There will be two 2nd prizes of one precut fabric bundle as well.

Here are some of the projects that will be featured in our new publication. Ask your LQS if they will be carrying it and are open. If you can’t find it locally, we ship free to US addresses and charge exact postage for international orders. Click here to Order Fat Quarter Love 3.

The eight quilt patterns included in Fat Quarter Love 3

Hop on over to see how others are using precuts to shorten cutting time and to make their quilting more fun and affordable.

Yes to Yarn Dyes

design, fabric, quilting, sewing

We get lots of questions about our Warp + Weft Premium Yarn Dyes from quilters who haven’t ever quilted with yarn dyes before so we thought it might be helpful to share some tips here.

What are yarn dyes? Are they different from shot cottons? How are they different from prints?

Prints are produced by laying a series of screens and inks on undyed cotton. The screens are applied to only one side so there’s a back and from to prints. Yarn dye refers to a category of fabric in which the patterns are woven, as opposed to printed. Each yarn is dyed a different color before the fabric is woven. The pattern is produced by weaving so the front and back of the fabric are identical unless one side has been brushed to create a flannel. Shot cottons are often a bit more coarse and nubby but are a category of yarn dyes.

Do you have to cut them perfectly straight and match the plaids over every seam?

This is a personal choice. In our Warp + Weft publication, we designed a series of patterns that allow the plaids, ginghams, and stripes to be used in ways that don’t require matching plaids or cutting the fabric totally straight. In addition, you’ll notice that the smaller the scale of the plaid the less noticeable it will be anyway. However, if you include yarn dyes in some patterns, you’ll have to decide how important it is to cut according to the weaving pattern. Our preference is to cut mostly straight but not worry if it’s 5% off. Some people love wonky angles in plaids and others will prefer to match plaids across seams. You be you!

Are they the same weight as shot cottons which are too thin for me?

Some of the yarn dyes on the market are thinner than quilting cottons and don’t hold their shape well when quilting. Warp + Weft Premium Yarn Dyes are the same weight as standard quilting cotton and slightly heavier with a tighter weave than other yarn dyes on the market. In prewashing, they shrink the same amount as standard prints. We recommend prewashing all fabric with Ivory Ultra dishwashing liquid and drying as you will the final quilt.

How can I mix them with other fabrics I own?

We designed this collection as we do all of our collections — to play well with others. Although the yarn dyes are multicolored, think of them as you would a print of the same hue. Focus on the color and mix them with abandon with batiks, prints, solids, chambrays, in every genre of fabric. These fabrics are chameleons. The magenta will look edgy with modern prints. The red will mix beautifully with feedsack or reproduction prints. Focus on color and mix it up! The more the merrier!

Please tag us on Instagram and Facebook and show us how you’re including Warp + Weft Premium Yarn Dyes in your projects!

20 Years and Counting

design, fabric, general crafts, inspiration, just a thought, needlework, quilting, sewing

Happy New Year friends. It’s going to be a big year for us as we celebrate our 20th anniversary in May. There will be special events, new products, new online tutorials, new classes, new publications and lots of new fabric throughout the year as we mark this important milestone. Many of you have cheered us on since the beginning and we’d love to hear what’s of interest to you.

Mostly we want to help you find time and space in your life to make things that bring joy to you and your loved ones. It doesn’t matter to us if it’s modern. It doesn’t matter if it’s made with our patterns. It doesn’t matter if it wins ribbons or gets accepted to prestigious shows. What we know for certain is that the art of making things is an inherently optimistic pursuit. Who couldn’t use a little optimism at the start of a new year? Regardless of how the rest of your day or year has gone, there’s a wonder in our eyes and minds when we’re making things. We need more of that.

So as we start this first day of 2019, join us in committing to a year of great making. Let’s clear space in our homes, our minds and our days to make whatever brings you joy for even 30 minutes per week. Even daydreaming about projects counts! Let’s make 2019 the year we take a cold, hard look at the barriers that get in our way of making and commit to removing those obstacles. We’ll do our best to share our tips throughout the year for everything from taming your stash to helping you figure out what to do with all of those UFOs. Let us know on our Instagram and Facebook pages as well as in the comments below, how we can help you to have a great year of sewing, quilting and making. Fresh starts. New possibilities. Ready, set, go!