Tuesday, 12 July 2016


Q&A With Trish Stuart

Join us as we welcome an adorable project from one of our amazing sponsors WonderFil Specialty Threads!

Texas-based Quilter, Author, & International Teacher

For the full Q&A visit the WonderFil website.

Raised in Alaska and currently residing in Texas, Trish’s art is heavily influenced by nature and color. She has a broad range of techniques and styles, ranging from traditional piecing, her own method of easy curved piecing, small and large scale appliqué, painting on fabric and mixed media. She currently can be found working in wool and embroidery. A former “Sewing Star” for both Pfaff and Viking, Trish has been a repeat guest on nationally broadcast television programs, is featured on Craft Daily as one of their online teachers, has been published in national quilting magazines, traveled and taught both nationally and internationally. She has published 12 books and over 200 patterns. Her passion is inspiring others to succeed in their own creativity, encouraging them to work out of the box by showing how to get from A to B. The point is to have fun doing it!
Trish has been with the WonderFil Teacher Program since 2009.

For the full interview / Q&A with Trish Stuart visit the WonderFil website.

For great tutorials, DIY project, and more visit the WonderFil.ca blog.

With Love and Threads,

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Hand Quilting Tips and a Modern Quilt Project

About our author:
Annette Millard is passionate about sewing and has worked in the sewing industry for many, many years and is always happiest with needle, fabric and thread in her hands. She currently enjoys supporting the Coats & Clark community writing blog posts about products and projects for the Coats Sewing Secrets Blog.

Quick! Fast! Easy! Instant! These seem to be the words we frequently think most important when we’re planning a task. Even our leisure lives become invaded with this mantra and too often, I find those same words crossover into my quilting and sewing life. So, let’s stop, even if just for a minute and think about why we quilt. What drew us to this magical art and what keeps it enjoyable? Was it speed? Probably not. So perhaps, slowing down and mindfully enjoying the process of what we can create with our hands could recreate the joy that first caused us to take up needle and thread.

And, so . . . Hand Quilting, a slow, mindful form of stitching that makes every project unique and distinct. Not “quilt in a day”, but a fabulous, purposeful, creatively, joyful form of quilting that connects our ancestral traditions with modern trends and recharges our passion for stitching. If you haven’t tried it, I have good tips, a marvelous thread, resources from your favorite experts and a beautiful project for you. And, if you’ve already discovered the amazing calm and fulfillment of Hand Quilting, you’ll enjoy adding even more info to your “by hand” file.

So let’s talk thread - one of the most important “tools” for hand stitching success! Coats and Clark makes a wonderful Hand Quilting Thread that is designed specifically for your hand stitching needs. You’ll find it in over 25 beautiful colors, so you’ll easily be able to match your fabrics. Many quilters find it’s best to choose threads that match each of the fabrics you are using as Hand Quilting stitches are larger than machine stitching and will be more distinctly visible. Other quilters suggest matching the thread color to the backing as those stitches tend to be longer than the top stitches so they will “hide” best in a matching color. You may find that you want to choose a busy print for your backing so that the threads that match your top fabrics will blend in well on the back, also. Whatever you choose, just be sure those swatches are tucked into your pocket when you go out to choose your thread!

Coats Hand Quilting thread has a glace finish and is made from a cotton wrapped polyester core that makes it strong as well as flexible. The polyester core is a uniform size, so it creates a smooth thread that holds up well to any stress we may put on it as we’re stitching. Click here for more information about this fabulous thread. You’ll find a download link for a PDF of those gorgeous colors, too!

Before you begin your Hand Quilting adventure, you’ll want to thread several needles with 45 to 60 cm lengths of thread, so you can efficiently keep stitching. Choose your needles carefully. Hand Quilting needles are betweens and a size 10 is a good choice. You’ll want an eye that isn’t too small to easily thread on a needle that is strong enough to slide through your layers of top, batting and backing. Click here  for a short, fun YouTube video on threading multiple needles onto one spool of thread.  Such a great idea!

Using a fairly short length of thread (none of those meter long lengths, please), will help prevent tangling and keep your working thread manageable. Lack of knottiness, is another one of the reasons I love the glace finish on Coats Hand Quilting Thread. Although many quilters use a waxing product to prevent knotting, the gorgeous finish on the Coats thread inhibits and resists knotting all on its own. The very last thing you want when Hand Quilting is to find unwanted knots in your working thread!

Now, what about those little stitches and how do you get them even? Well, here’s the wonderful thing about handmade - practice makes perfect and . . . it doesn’t have to be perfect! Seasoned hand quilters will tell you that the more you stitch, the more even it will become and if you examine those stitches up close, there are always variations and it’s okay.  To quote Marianne Fons, “Hand quilting is like going for a walk for pleasure rather than getting in your car to go somewhere quickly. “ Slow down, enjoy what you’re doing and the patience you’ll develop from the process will enrich your life in so many ways!

Sometimes, you just need a buddy to hold one hand while you Hand Quilt with the other, so here’s some help from our friends in the big, wide quilting world.
Click here for the Quilty Hand Quilting video, mentioned above, featuring Mary and Marianne Fons.
Now, click here  to learn Alex Anderson’s Top Three Hand Quilting Cheats. Thank you, Alex!
And, finally, click here for a marvelous Craftsy post on the Hand Quilting Stitches you’ll need to know, like you see in the photo above. Quilter’s Knot, Running Stitch, Tunneling and Rocking will soon become a natural part of your quilting vocabulary!

Are you ready? Feeling better now? Good! We have a beautiful Modern Traditional Quilt for you that features both machine and hand quilting. It’s the perfect combination of tradition and modern style and you’ll love making it. You’ll machine quilt some areas of your quilt then finish with beautiful hand echo stitching around the white sections. Coats chose lovely Free Spirit solids, but you may want to use prints or dynamic florals. Put your “hand” to it and make it your own!

Click here  for the quilt project that includes a link to the PDF tutorial. Full color to make it clear for you!
In Summer, my very favorite thing about Hand Quilting is it’s portability. Take your charming, calming stitches along on your next road or day trip and carry it along to the kids’ sports practice. And, for even greater joy, get your friends involved, plan a gathering and invite those kids, too. Stitching is always better in community and a Play/Hand Quilting group will make your Summer the best ever!

Thursday, 23 June 2016

An Email that shows the Kindness of Quilters

This email was received by a Board member. Quilters truly are remarkable people with very big hearts! Read on:

Our local quilting group The Huron Shores Quilters have devoted the month of May to making quilts for Fort McMurray.  We had the local paper The North Shore Sentinel do an article on our efforts.

We have just sent the first 14 quilts to Erie Quilt Art in Calgary and have about a dozen more in the process of being finished.  We hope to have the rest off by the end of June.

I have, "courtesy of the North Shore Sentinel", attached a photo of our group with many of the quilts, 

Each of our quilts has a label indicating it has come from the Huron Shores Quilters of Blind River, Iron Bridge, Thessalon and Bruce Mines in Northern Ontario, along with an email address.    

It was the CQA who first let us know about sending quilts through Erie Quilt Art - so thank you.

Linda Stemp
Fort McMurray Quilt Project Co-ordinator

Huron Shores Quilters

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Cross Stitching DIY Project

Cross Stitching DIY Project

Join us as we welcome an adorable project from one of our amazing sponsors WonderFil Specialty Threads!

This hand-made project makes a great personal gift for any special family or friend, and is simple enough to complete even for beginners.

Here are all the materials you will be needing for this project:

  • 1 piece of 11 count aida cloth 7”x8” (will vary based on size of design)
  • Size 22 tapestry or darning needle
  • 12wt Fruitti, a 100% Egyptian cotton thread <link to: http://www.wonderfil.ca/fruitti> (Colors used in our project: FT20-Storm, FT10-Roses, FT15-Carnation)
  • Pattern: www.cross-stitch-pattern.net <link to site> (pictured: “Thank You for Being My Friend”)
  • Embroidery scissors
  • 6” Cross-stitch hoop
The first step is to choose the pattern you would like to cross stitch with your personalized message. We used a free pattern from this great website where you can find a variety of different designs for your cross-stitch.

For the full tutorial on this DIY project visit the WonderFil.ca blog.

With Love and Threads,

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Q&A With Ana Buzzalino!

Q&A With Ana Buzzalino!

Join us as we welcome an adorable project from one of our amazing sponsors WonderFil Specialty Threads!

Calgarian Fibre Artist and Quilt Instructor

For the full Q&A visit the WonderFil website.

Ana has been a teacher on a variety of quilting techniques for the past 20+ years. Some of the recent workshops have focused on free-motion quilting and surface design. She is currently working on a new series of work that includes mixed media and is a frequent contributor to quilting arts magazine and quilting arts tv.

Many of ana’s quilts have won several awards at local and national shows, and have been juried into major international shows.

Wonderfil is proud to have counted ana buzzalino as part of our teacher program since 2009.

For the full interview / Q&A with Ana Buzzalino visit the WonderFil website.

For great tutorials, DIY project, and more visit the WonderFil.ca blog.
With Love and Threads,

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Chevron Embroidered: Pillbox Pincushion

Join us as we welcome an adorable project from one of our amazing sponsors WonderFil Specialty Threads!

 The WonderFil team would love to share with you a wonderfil little project that would not only be fun, simple and easy to make, but also useful. For this project we decided to use the WonderFil’s Razzle and Dazzle threads.

The Razzle and Dazzle threads are perfect for hand embroidery, the silky soft 6 ply rayon thread adds a beautiful shine and sparkle to any project. Simple stitching and the usefulness of the pillbox make it the perfect project to try your hand at embroidering. This is a great project that can simply be modified and customize. Have fun with the pattern and design, these pillbox pincushions make the perfect little gift.

With a few simple seams and a little stuffing, you will be moving your pins into their new home before you know it.


  • Wonderfil dazzle - 6180, 3130
  • Wonderfil razzle – rzm03, rzm15
  • Wonderfil designer -  white - ds426
  • Linen fabric, 1/4 yd.
  • Fusible fleece, 1/4 yd
  • Fiberfill stuffing
  • Button


  • Rotary cutter
  • Ruler with 60 degree angle markings
  • Fabric marking tool
  • Soft sculpting doll needle

Basic supplies

  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine
  • Pins
  • Hand sewing needle,
  • Iron
  •  Pressing surface

For the full tutorial on this DIY project visit the WonderFil.ca blog.

Make sure to visit our booth at the Quilt Canada 2016 in Toronto from June15–18.

With Love and Threads,

Monday, 13 June 2016

An Alternative to Invisible Monofilament Threads

Join us as we welcome an adorable project from one of our amazing sponsors WonderFil Specialty Threads!

Looking for a better alternative to invisible monofilament threads? Most of us know invisible thread as clear nylon or polyester that come in "clear" or "smoke" colour and resembles a fishing line. Some of the most common complaints are that they have a lot of stretch, become brittle or break easily, cannot withstand heat, can turn yellow, don't feel very soft and will sometimes cut into the fabric. These threads also tend to have a shine, meaning they still show under the light.

InvisaFil is an excellent alternative as it is an ultra fine 100wt thread, meaning it is thin enough to disappear into the fabric. It is also a cottonized polyester which reduces the stretch in the thread and gives it a matte finish, allowing it to blend into the fabric even further. InvisaFil is soft and silky to the touch, making it an excellent choice for quilts, and is also ideal for stitch in the ditch, hand or machine appliqué and English paper piecing because of its super fine weight, resulting in extremely flat seams (as you can see pictured).

For great tutorial, DIY project, and more visit the WonderFil.ca blog.

Make sure to visit our booth at the Quilt Canada 2016 in Toronto from June15–18.

With Love and Threads,