Saturday, 6 February 2016

Counting Inches #3

Great news!

After totaling up the inches from December and January meetings, we are able to announce that we’ve made it as far as Winnipeg, MB. This is amazing as there were some guilds who didn’t have a meeting in December.

It’s a good thing we are making progress. Going through these COLD months (and also the colder provinces right now), we sure need all those quilts to keep warm! 

Don’t forget to send your inches to Marilyn at We'd like to make it to Toronto in time for Quilt Canada 2016!

Here are some pictures of Show and Tell:

Quilt from Annapolis Valley Quilters
Quilt of Valour quilt that was quilted by one of their members.

Victoria QG

Manitoba Quilters - one of their ABC (Adults, Babies, Children) quilts

Nanaimo QG 

Kemptville Quilters 

Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Quilting Stitches Served Straight Up

Zoë MacDonald is E-Commerce and Social Media Manager at Canada’s
largest manufacturer and wholesale distributor of quality sewing, quilting, and knitting supplies. Crafty lady and recent quilting convert, she is keen to share her love for the latest in notions.

I spent the weekend away before the holidays and ended up stumbling upon a charming boutique filled to the brim with locally handmade items. Despite the offerings, I was determined not to buy anything for myself: In a decidedly gift-shopping state of mind, I couldn't be tempted.

Now weeks later, my holiday gifts purchased or made, wrapped, and unwrapped already, something from the store is still haunting me. I'm experiencing that much dreaded feeling - the aversion to which causes many of us to buy more fabric than we often “need”: Buyer’s Remorse’s cousin, Buyer’s Regret.

The item was a beautiful, heavy quilt with a crinkled cotton texture and clean linear piecing. The jewel of the crown was lots of simple but chunky hand quilted stiches in a contrasting colour. Something about the expertise with which it was made combined with its cozy vibe reminded me of my Auntie Susan’s quillows. In retrospect, I can’t believe she let us take those camping, and immediately made a mental note to adopt her tremendous chill about her fine work.

Armed with a combination of nostalgia and FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out), I decided to have a go at something with a similar style: A simple quilt that’s all about the stitches. But, instead of making an impact with creative stippling, lots of straight bold lines will let the thread speak for itself.

Knowing this quilt is all about the right thread means it’s all about the right needle, too.

Piecing with a Microtex Needle

For piecing, I usually use trusty Gütermann Sew-All thread (I’m not a natural fibers purist) with a Universal needle. This time, I decided to plan a little bit better (a long standing quilting resolution of mine) and choose something more specialised: Sulky Polylite 60 weight with a size 90 Microtex needle.

Piecing with a Schmetz Microtex Needle

Using a finer thread will reduce bulk, which discourages quilt top lumpiness. The Microtex needle pairs well for precise work and super straight stitching since it is slim and extra sharp. For finer cotton, especially at the piecing edges, this combo worked perfectly well and sewed very smoothly, making piecing a piece of cake.

Quilting with a Metallic Needle

Once I had a good look at the completed sandwich, I decided to add some sparkle to the plus signs. They already reminded me of a European pharmacy sign and so I wanted to accent this with concentric plus signs. I used a variegated version of Gütermann Metallic thread, pulling in a few of the main colours in the floral print. The effect was a shiny rose-gold.

Quilting with a Schmetz Metallic Needle

For the bobbin thread I chose a quilter’s classic, Gütermann cotton thread. Once I found the perfect neutral-ish colour, I decided to back all the top threads with it.
Since the back pattern is busy, I liked the idea of creating texture instead of contrast. The Metallic needle (size 90) was an obvious choice though I could have also used a Top Stitch. The key is an extra-large eye, which prevents the shredding of specialty threads. Of course, I followed all the rules for successful sparkly stippling.

The main print ended up looking a little bit more babyish than retro, so I pulled from a darker colour for the main body quilting stitches to break it up. Still set on straight lines, I went with a classic crosshatch: some bold, some fine.

Bold Cross-hatching with a Topstitch Needle

Bold Cross-hatching with a Topstitch Needle

Having loved the look of the variegated metallic thread, I opted for another variegated thread in a heavy weight: Sulky 12 weight Blendables Cotton. To accommodate the gauge, I paired this with a size 100 Topstitch Needle.

Fine Cross-hatching with a Quilting Needle

Fine Cross-hatching with a Quilting Needle

When using a lighter weight thread, like this 30 weight Sulky Blendables Cotton, the quilting needle is an obvious go-to. (I used a size 90) Its sharp and pointy tip is designed to sew through multiple layers without snagging or damaging your fabric while the tapered shaft is low impact on your finer cottons.

When in doubt

Even if you know needle selection is important, it can be tricky to remember which is best for what. Luckily, most needles are named by purpose: A Denim Needle leaves little to the imagination. For more specialty or nuanced quilting needle education – there’s an app for that!

Inside the Schmetz Needles App

If you’re not an iPhone user, you will find the same information at

Next time, the finishing touches: binding and labelling!

To get your own Schmetz Needles & quality quilting thread, visit your local Canadian quilt retailer.
For more inspiration and product education, follow H.A. Kidd and Company Limited on Facebook.

Friday, 29 January 2016

Check out the Vendors at Quilt Canada 2016

Quilt Canada 2016 in Toronto ON is shaping up to be the biggest conference to date. Our Merchant Mall is huge! So much so, we had to make it bigger to fit in all these awesome vendors that are coming to see you! They are there to help you with your quilting needs!  They will be bringing the newest, most colourful, different and unique products to show you what is hot and trending in quilting these days!

We are thrilled to introduce you to the incredible  line up of vendors for Quilt Canada 2016!

APQS Canada/Whirls n' Swirls Quilting
Black Sheep & Ewe
Blue Fig
Border Creek Station
Brother International (Canada)
Bytowne Threads
Cobwebs and Caviar
Collection Inedith
Country Clothesline
Country Concessions
Cozy Quilts
Creative Sisters
Creemore House of Stitches
Distinctive Sewing Supplies
Earthly Goods Quilting
Eddycrest Furniture

Fabric Please
Fabric Spark
Fabric Spot
Flare Fabrics
Fun with Stitches
Grantham Books
HA Kidd
Handi Quilter
Harebrained Happenings
Inspired Getaways
JP's Quilt Studio
Kalabandar: Scarves from afar
Kallisti Quilts
Kawartha Quilting Systems
Kindred Spirits Quilt Co
Meerkat Trading
Pastime Pieces
Perfect Pear Quilts
Quilt Thyme
Quilters Line
Quilters Nine Patch
Quilting by Design
Quincy's Quilting Inc
Redfern Enterprises
Ruti's Needlebed Ltd
Sew Fancy Inc
Sew Little Time
Sew Sisters Quilt Shop
Sewrite Distributors Inc
Soft Impressions
Stone Threads Fibre Art
SVP Husqvarna Viking
SVP Pfaff
The Cotton Mill Threadworks
The Quilted Cardinal
The Quilting Bee
Threads that Bind 
Tiger Lily Quilts
Ultimate Sewing Centre
Village Square Quilts
WonderFil Specialty Threads

Friday, 15 January 2016

You Are Wanted at Quilt Canada 2016

You heard it right! You are in hot demand at Quilt Canada 2016 as a VOLUNTEER!

Not only that, we have some pretty awesome perks  if you volunteer for a shift or two!  
It gets better, we have a whole varied selection of fun and different ways you can help out. There will be something for you without a doubt! 

Do you know how much fun you can have amidst all those friendly quilters from across the nation, mingling on the show floor admiring the incredible quilts on display? Don't wait, sign up today to be a part of this amazing experience!

Head on over and check it out! We would love to have you help us deliver the biggest quilt conference Canada has ever seen!

Sunday, 10 January 2016

Try Out a Long Arm or Mid Arm Machine at Quilt Canada 2016

Do you machine quilt? Would you like to machine quilt? Do you sometimes experience frustration trying to ram that big quilt under your domestic machine?  If you know there is an alternative but you really don't know much more than that, or you want to learn more about these machines, we have the solution for you at Quilt Canada 2016! Read down to the end to find out the best part!

Handi Quilter has generously donated for your use a classroom of Sweet Sixteens for you to try! The best part is the workshops are only 3 hours in length and the topics vary to suit your needs. Sweet Sixteens are considered a mid arm machine that you can sit down at.

It gets better, Handi Quilter is also bringing in an Avanté long arm machine that the instructor will demonstrate in lecture style with a projector and big screen so you can sit in your chair and see close up exactly how she does her quilting. And these lectures are only 3 hours in length so you still have oodles of time to head over to the Handi Quilter booth and try an Avanté, take in the quilt shows or visit the merchant mall!

Did I mention that we are bringing in their top instructors in the industry?  We are, Amy Von Gurp and Sue Patten are coming to teach! They are both teaching 8 different workshops/lectures which gives you 16 opportunities to get informed and try mid arm and long arm quilting.

Take a look at just a few of the lectures and workshops they are offering.

Here is a sampling of two of Amy's classes:

3021- Ruling the Ruler
3021- Ruling the Ruler Sweet
Sixteen Hands-On - Two students per machine 

3 Hours: Friday, June 17, 2016, 8:30 - 11:30 a.m. 
Kit Fee: $25.00 (Students should also be prepared to purchase a ruler of their choice at the beginning of the class). 
Skill Level: All levels
Cost: Members:$60; Non-Members: $67
Note: Lunch tickets are available for purchase.
Be intimidated no more!  Come and learn how to use rulers safely and properly to finish your quilts.  In this class we will be exploring the different ways you can use a ruler to finish any quilting projects from clam shells to feathers and background fills.
SUPPLY LIST: Sketch pad, pencil and pen.
3521- Modern Quilting on Traditional Quilts
3521- Modern Quilting on Traditional Quilts
Long-Arm Lecture style workshop 

3 Hours: Friday, June 17, 2016, 1:00 - 4:00 p.m. 
Kit Fee: N/A 
Skill Level: All levels
Cost: Members:$50; Non-Members: $57
Note: Lunch tickets are available for purchase.
In this class we will explore ways of using modern quilting designs and techniques on traditional quilts.  We will be using a variety of tools that include rulers, computers and micro handles.
SUPPLY LIST: Sketch pad, pencil and pen.

And here is a sampling of Sue Patten's lecture/workshops:

1010 - Add, Alter, Delete, Change
1010 - Add, Alter, Delete, Change...
Long-Arm Lecture style workshop 

3 Hours: Wednesday, June 15, 2016, 8:30-11:30 a.m. 
Kit Fee: $5.00 
Skill Level: All levels
Cost: Members:$50; Non-Members: $57
Note: Lunch tickets are available for purchase
This new class will take six design concepts and turn them into DOZENS of designs for every area of the quilt top.  Sue will teach the glass to go beyond what they see to discover what each design can be if you add, alter, delete and change it.  This class takes each design concept and creates blocks, borders, sashing, background, and edge-to-edge designs or all over designs, covering the complete quilt - all in one class.  Students will have the chance to share a design they use all the time and have it transformed into a multitude of variations to fit every area of a quilt.  This is a fast paced, all out fun and exciting class that will leave students with a whole new way of looking at their designs and the designs they will learn in other classes.  Come see beyond what's there and discover what any design can become as we Add, Alter, Delete and Change the way we design and quilt!!!
SUPPLY LIST: Sketch pad, pencil and pen.
1510 - Rule Your Quilt!
1510 - Rule Your Quilt!
Sweet Sixteen Hands-On - Two students per machine. 

3 Hours: Wednesday, June 15, 2016, 1:00-4:00 p.m. 
Kit Fee: $25.00 
Skill Level: All levels
Cost: Members: $60; Non-Members: $67
Note: Lunch tickets are available for purchase.
If you are hesitant about using rulers, you will love them after this class.  Learn to handle rulers and templates safely and properly, as well as how to work with rulers to achieve amazing designs.  So join us and discover how rulers can add beauty and precision to all your future quilts.  Skills Featured: Straight line quilting; Fast continuous-curve method; Right angles and echo quilting; Cross-hatching; Piano keys and borders.
SUPPLY LIST: Sketch pad, pencil and pen.
Head on over to our classes to see what interests you and sign up today, so you don't miss this incredible opportunity!

One more little thing, when you sign up for a class/lecture, you get a ballot to enter into an amazing draw to win your very own Avanté!

Thursday, 7 January 2016

Enter our Youth Challenge!

Cantik Batiks Youth Challenge 2016
'My Favourite Game or Sport'

Calling all Teachers, Students, Grandmas, Moms, Sisters and Aunts
(Grandpas, Dads, Brothers and Uncles too)!

Teachers, students  moms, grandmas, and neighbours are joining in the fun of helping a youth produce a creative quilt of 'My Favorite Game or Sport' for our Youth Challenge. Already we have run out of our first batch from Cantik Batiks who are graciously supplying more fabric. 

Make a quilt based on the theme 'My Favourite Game or Sport' The challenge fabric must be used in the quilt. It can be any size, like placemat, crib, whatever you want!

The student categories of entrants are - Elementary, Middle and High school students. Do not miss this exciting challenge and the prizes it will bring.

CQA/ACC members, you can sponsor more than one entry - so start today to plan with your school agers and get those entries rolling in.

This quilt may be art, traditional or modern but must include all or part of a fabric square you will receive from our Youth Coordinator Volunteer, Rolanda Tovey. Create your 3-layer quilt any size. You may use any technique and embellishment.

Deadline: Feb. 28, 2016 for the receipt of a photo of your quilt entry.

From March 3 -15, 2016 you will be able to vote for one of the entries to win the Viewers’ Choice award. There will be prizes for each student category, the Viewers’ Choice and for the sponsor of the Viewers’ Choice winner.

Click here for more info and to see all the rules.

Click here to view the photo gallery of all the Youth Challenge quilts from 2015. 
2015 winner titled 'Shelby's Aquarium'

Sunday, 3 January 2016

Mystery Quilt for Canadian Quilters to Celebrate Canada's 150th Birthday - Block 3

We are thrilled to show you Cantik Batiks 3rd block for their fun mystery quilt to celebrate Canada's 150th in 2017!

Shania Sunga, their Canadian designer, has designed a 13 block Canadian Themed Mystery Quilt available at Canadian Quilt shops. Every 6 weeks, a new Province or Territory will be featured until April 2017, in time for Canada’s Birthday!

Their 3rd block is Alberta. 

Alberta is a province in Western Canada which landscape encompasses mountains, prairies, desert badlands and vast coniferous forests. Alberta has more than 600 lakes and is rich in mineral deposits.
Named for the fourth daughter of Queen Victoria, Princess Louise Caroline Alberta, Alberta is known as the Princess Province, but also nicknamed Sunny Alberta.
Barns have joined the ranks of “Endangered Species” New barns which are being built today lack the cultural and architectural interest from earlier years.

For more information go to