Wednesday, May 23, 2018


I’m excited to announce that I’m now a BERNINA Ambassador! I’ve loved piecing, free-motion quilting, thread sketching and basic garment sewing on my two BERNINAs – the VIRTUOSA 153 QE and the AURORA 440 QE – for almost 15 years. 

With my mom, sewing on her 1958 Singer Slant Needle 404 in 1995.
My mother bought me my first BERNINA, the 153, at a time when I couldn’t afford a good, modern machine. (I was working on her 1958 Singer Slant Needle 404.) My mom was a home economics major in college, and taught in public schools for about six years, before she had me, and devoted herself to being a mother and wife. She was an excellent seamstress, and a really great quilter. I made my first patchwork quilt with her when I was 10. She recognized quality in the BERNINA machines, and had purchased a 153 for herself when she had to replace her 1980s-era Kenmore.   

It’s not an exaggeration to say that the new BERNINA totally changed my life. I was able to do things, like thread sketching, that I had never been able to do on her 1958 machine. It took me in new directions, into art quilting, and eventually to teaching classes nationally and internationally, to writing books and doing videos, and to becoming the host of Quilting Arts TV. After my mother died suddenly in 2011, I inherited her AURORA 440 QE. It was wonderful having a second machine as a backup, when my other machine was in for service. And I think of her every time I use it. 

Soon, I’ll get to play on the BERNINA 770 QE! This is one of the versatile machines we have on the set of Quilting Arts TV, and I’m thrilled that I’ll now have the time to get to know its features intimately. Stay tuned; throughout the next year, I’ll be blogging about my experiences and progress, and I’ll share some projects and tips on, BERNINA USA’s blog.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Shooting Quilting Arts TV Series 2200

We shot Quilting Arts TV Series 2200 at KS Productions’ studio in Solon, Ohio, last month. The 13 episodes in this series will be released to participating Public TV stations in late July, and will also be available on DVD and digital download through The Quilting Company then. 

Series 2200 guests are: 
Lesley Riley
Sandra Bruce
Luana Rubin
Susan Brubaker Knapp
Vivika Hansen DeNegre
Susan Shie
Jill Jensen
Maria Shell
Laurie Ceesay
Mary McCauley
Heidi Proffety *
Maggie Vanderweit*
Cindy Grisdela*
MJ Kinman*

*these guests shot segments in September that appear in both Series 2100 and 2200. 

Here’s a sneak peek at all the creative goodness coming your way soon:

Laurie Ceesay/
Pop art portrait quilts
Discount store embellishments
Creating realistic hair in a portrait quilt

Jane Davila/
Using sprays and stencils on alternative surfaces
Bohemian embellishments – tassels and pom moms
Bespoke edge finishes for quilts and pillows

Vivika Hansen DeNegre/Editor of Quilting Arts magazine
Overprinting on fabric
Matting special improvisational blocks
Attaching embellishments with embroidery
Quilts and prayer flags with a message

Sandra Bruce/
“Material Matrix” – Pixelated quilts
Stitching words
Bindings that match the inside of the quilt

Jill Jensen/
Linoleum block carving and printing
Free-motion quilting to enhance imagery in art quilts
Weekly quilt project

Lesley Riley/
Wet-cyan printing
Beyond the print – how to turn your eco and wet-cyan prints into unique works of nature inspired art with photo manipulation. (Shot for Series 2300)

Mary McCauley/
3-D Quilted vessels (Shot for Series 2300)
Greeting card pop-up
Gift box

Luana Rubin/
Trends from the Tokyo Quilt Show
Quilts with a message 

Maria Shell/
Improvisational piecing (shot for Series 2300)
Blow it up!
Sewing machine features you need

Susan “Lucky” Shie/
Journey of the artist
Sketchbooks and drawing 

Susan Brubaker Knapp/
Simplified soy wax batik
Succulent pin cushion
Free-motion starts and stops
Improving free-motion quilting: practice on panels

Many thanks to our
Quilting Arts TV Series 2200 sponsors:

BERNINA of America, LLC
Wooly Felted Wonders
Dharma Trading Co.