Tag: AQ Magazine

AQ Magazine Review

AQ Magazine, also known as American Quilter, features a stunning black and white quilt with a splash of mint green on it’s cover. Get a review of this issue right here.

As you read on the cover of AQ Magazine, their motto is: Discover, Inspire, Create.

You’ll likely enjoy the first article in this issue is called, “Give Your Quilt a Bath”! It gives you step by step guidance on how to bathe a quilt that just can’t go into a washing machine. I found the specific instructions (with illustrations) from how to submerse to how to remove the quilt very helpful.

Inside AQ Magazine, you’ll also find seven “irresistible” quilt patterns, some “how-to” articles, and features by contributors. The seven quilt patterns include three “easy”, three “intermediate”, and one “challenging”.

American Quilter is a perk of membership with AQS (American Quilter Society), but is also available on the newsstand. This March 2021 newsstand issue is $6.99.

You’ll find a feature display of MJ Kinman’s “Bourbon Diamonds” which is as interesting as the quilts are beautiful. You might recall the exhibit featured at The National Quilt Museum in Paducah, Kentucky in 2020.

One regular contributor, Gail Garber, discusses the use of color versus contrast with many photo examples.

I hope you find this review of AQ Magazine helpful. Because I’ve found American Quilter to be a high-quality publication, I started with this issue. I can say from a personal standpoint, the company is delightful to work with. I’ll leave a few pics of Merle’s Bouquet here. It was a lot of fun to have her featured in this quality magazine!

Image of AQ Magazine Cover
Image of Quilt in AQ Magazine
Image of Quilt and Focus Fabric
Merle’s Bouquet Pattern and Focus Fabric Kit

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Remember “Merle’s Bouquet” Quilt?

If you remember Merle’s Bouquet, you’ll see the difference a focus fabric can make!

To review, you might recall that Merle is my neighbor and owner of this vintage watering can. When Merle leaves town, this is the can I use to water her flowers.

I happen to love vintage watering cans, too. Therefore, when AQS requested a quilt design that used both beautiful sides of fabric, I instantly thought of arranging a bouquet in Merle’s vintage watering can.

Image of AQ Magazine
Image of Merle's Bouquet for AQ

Use both beautiful sides of one focus fabric.

As a result of the editor of AQS (American Quilter’s Society) requesting a new pattern for their magazine, I asked Merle if I could photograph and sketch her beautiful collection of vases and her vintage watering can.

As a result, the watering can made the cut!

Similar to Little Susie, the mason jar or Noelle, the ice skates, and Kate (plus many more), this bouquet will be made with a modern broderie perse technique. The bouquet and binding are made from the RIGHT side of fabric, while the watering can is made with the REVERSE.

Notice the light value of the watering can (made from the reverse of the focus fabric) seem to reflect the bouquet made from the front. The flowers are cut from the fused fabric (broderie perse) and arranged as the quilter desires. Aside from auditioning and choosing fabrics for the background, this is the most satisfying part of the process! Quilters in classes really enjoy watching their bouquets “grow’. Each individual’s vision of their bouquet makes these quilts a little work of art.

Learn more about Broderie Perse.

New fabric, new look.

Remember Merle's Bouquet Quilt
Merle’s Bouquet

This vintage watering can quilt has a new, bold look, due mostly to the focus fabric. This RJR Digital floral has a bold motif of painted flowers and birds. Because the value of the focus fabric is strong, it can handle stronger background fabrics.

Auditioning both sides of fabric.

Each pattern describes how to audition both sides of fabric. It’s all about value. In fact, when you learn to audition both sides, you are honing a skill you can apply to all your future quilts! Using of both sides of fabric is like a study in the nuances of value. Learn more HERE.

Finally, remember Merle’s Bouquet is made from floral focus fabrics, but might find other fun motifs as well or ones with little extras, like butterflies, bees, or birds!

Shop more than 50 quilt patterns designed to use BOTH beautiful sides of fabric.

See the AQ Magazine Review here!

Introducing Merle’s Bouquet!

A quilt pattern made from a vintage watering can? You betcha!

My fun, sweet, adventuresome neighbor travels from time to time. When she’s away, I walk over to her house and water her flowers using her vintage watering can.

I’ve always admired that can. They don’t make them like that anymore!

So, when the editor at AQ Magazine asked me for a quilt design, my first stop was Merle’s house!

Merle has lovely vases and other containers. I took photos of them all. But before I left, I asked if I could photograph her watering can. “That old thing?” Yep!

That old thing was perfect for a quilt pattern!

Without further ado…here is Merle’s Bouquet!

Image of Quilt
Merle’s Bouquet by Karla Kiefner, Creative Bee Studios

As you can see, she’s made with both beautiful sides of one floral fabric on a scrappy background. When using a combination of fusible applique and broderie perse, the technique is what I like to call “modern broderie perse”.

You see, the watering can is cut from a template, using the REVERSE side of the fabric. The flowers are cut using the fabric’s own motif.

Fortunately, finding fabric with a beautiful reverse isn’t hard. It just takes knowing what to look for and how to look! Each pattern that uses both sides of fabric (more than 45), teaches you how to easily audition both sides of fabric.

Learn more about The Tricky Traits of Value HERE.

Because of the long time between designing a quilt pattern and publication date, it seemed the day would never arrive. One day I got a call from my friend, Nancy, to look in my mailbox. I knew it was time!

I raced out to the mailbox and ran over to Merle’s. It was fun for Merle and I to open the issue together.

Image of magazine cover

Finally, here is the original quilt as it appears in the magazine.

Image of Quilt Pattern in Magazine

Subsequently, I made another version. This focus fabric gave the quilt a whole new look and feel! It’s pictured here with Merle’s can.

Image of Quilt and Watering Can

This RJR fabric has a vivid, painted look with a variety of flowers and birds to add the bouquet.

Image of Quilt and Magazine

You can shop for Merle’s Bouquet quilt pattern HERE.

Image of Quilt and Fabric
RJR Digiprint Arcadia “Secret Garden” Focus Fabric for Merle’s Bouquet

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How do YOU Quilt Week?

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

Quilt shows are like Disneyland for us.

In which land of the quilt show park do you like to hang?

Quilt show lands.

Firstly, do you map out a plan for conquering the whole “quilt park”? Secondly, do you stick to your plan? Or are you more of a “go with the flow of people and see where we land” kind of quilter?

Quilt show park passes.

Overall, here’s my generalizations of the types of visitors to quilt shows.

  • The quilt study. This quilter’s priority is to carefully see and study each quilt entered, reading the program notes as they go.
  • The land drover. This quilter needs to see each section, floor, and adjacent activities within the entire city hosting the show.
  • The vendor supporter. This quilter must hit all booths and find all new tools of the trade!

How do you conquer the quilt show challenge?

Initially, our little group starts with a plan. In the same fashion, we often change our plans!

Individual priorities.

That said, some of us are students, some are shoppers, some want to see it all!

Against the crowd.

Apart from our differences, we generally agree to go against the crowd. By that I mean, we first go to the furthest “lands” in the park. Once the crowds have cleared from the park entrance, we go see the mainland (winner’s circle).Some years we really study the quilts. There are some years that we REALLY shop the vendors.  Other years we’ve taken classes. Some years we throw our plans  out the window and just go!

This was a big quilt show year for me.

At the time of this writing, more than 10 of my quilt patterns and quilts were featured in Hancock’s of Paducah for Quilt Week in Paducah, Kentucky. Needless to say, I spent a good deal of my park time in this establishment!

Free pass.

Moreover, to celebrate, any friends who posted their photo with one of my patterns or quilts and #usebothsides was entered into a drawing for a free pattern of their choice.

And the winner is…

(drum roll and scroll down)

Quilt Show Week in Hancock's of Paducah
Rose, Pepita, and Emily hang in the distance.
Image of Quilts Hanging for Quilt Show Week
L to R: Sally, Kate, Lily, Belle, Phoebee, Something’s Brewing, and Fiona hanging at Hancock’s of Paducah!
Karla Kiefner with patterns at quilt show week in Hancock's of Paducah.
That’s me looking at Phoebee and Pepita patterns hanging in Hancock’s.
Image of Hancock's Post
Fiona was a featured quilt in Hancock’s of Paducah Facebook Promotion.
Image of Honey Pot

Finally, all the names went into the honey pot and the winner is Cindy Spaeth! Congrats, Cindy! Pick out your pattern, girl!


SHOP more than 50 quilt patterns that use BOTH beautiful sides of fabric HERE.

Learn how to use both sides HERE.

Trial by Combat – Quilt Competitions

Entering quilting competitions can be scary.

I’m guessing people who aren’t quilters might find that funny. Quilts are quilts – how can they be scary? I bet you’d agree though, if you quilt for family and friends or for your personal enjoyment, putting your heart and soul on display for a judge, strangers, and peers to see, pick apart, and make written comments on,  just might take the fun right out of those stitches and turn them into perfectionism and a bit of anxiety!

Mostly, I enter my local guild’s show which is held every other year. Easy enough. It’s a great show to be in because it’s fun to see what your quilting friends are up to and it’s always interesting to see how each show’s judging preferences change from year to year. I’m especially looking forward to our next show’s new category: Modern. Look here to see my study on defining modern quilting.

I did enter a quilt in a big show (AQS Chattanooga) a couple of years ago and the stress of entering that first time was high! I was terrified I’d do something wrong and miss getting in on a technicality of the process. I had chosen Chattanooga because it was a new location and I thought that would give me the best chances of getting in (I call that my Super Strategy). I guess it worked! I was super excited when I got the email that Bella Vista was accepted. My quilt was gonna be in a book (I thought)! When we got to Chattanooga, I found out they only make the pictorial books for Paducah shows (argh). I knew the quilt wasn’t “going anywhere” at that show because, well…I’ve been to these shows! The work is indescribable and well beyond my skills, knowledge, patience, and determination! But that was fine with me! Getting in was an honor and I had a great time wearing my contestant ribbon! If you’ve never been to a large regional show, GO! Every year I look at many of the quilts at AQS Paducah — no,  make that MOST of the quilts at AQS Paducah and just stand there and say, “How.” They are THAT good.

Image of Italian Landscape Quilt

Bella Vista was a semi-finalist in the AQS Chattanooga Quilt Show

So skip ahead to May of year 2017 and some emails I got saying, “Last chance to enter the NEW Fall Paducah quilt show… and, well, you know my Super Strategy is to enter into a new show, so I’m all in! Apparently, the strategy worked ’cause, GUESS WHAT?

Yep, guess who’s wearin’ a contestant ribbon at the Fall Paducah Quilt Show?   Moi! And here she is:Image of Quilt Depicting HeavenSee Sometimes You  Gotta Look Up.

Again, I say, if you haven’t been to a big quilt show, you should go because you will see amazing works of art which will make you stand there with your mouth wide open while you think, “HOW”.

If you haven’t entered quilts in a show, give it a shot! You just never know!

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Tell me what quilt shows you like and what your favorite thing is to see!

Please share, pin, and tweet away! Thanks, Karla