quilting, sewing

Don’t Miss Modern Basics (and a marvelous giveaway!)

Today I’m veering off the ReSew blog tour path for a moment to share the buzz about another new book with you. It's by an incredibly talented cyber-friend of mine. It’s all about today’s modern style. It’s all about the basics of quiltmaking. It’s all about Modern Basics: Easy Quilts to Fit Your Budget, Space, and Style!

Modern Basics cover
People who’ve been quilting for awhile will instantly recognize the value in Modern Basics. It’s a wonderful collection of go-to quilt designs to stitch up in time for the wedding, the birthday, the holiday, the anniversary. The [insert celebration!]. Simple, sophisticated, fresh, beautiful. You can make them just because, too. For that alone, I say skip the giveaway below entirely and grab yourself a copy here right now!

But today, I’d like to focus on beginning quilters—or those of you would like to be. Amy Ellis is the author of Modern Basics, and she’s one of those rare quilt designers who’s hit on a brilliant combination: simple sewing = stunning quilts. Since I published The Little Box of Baby Quilts in 2007, I’ve had a lot of beginning quilters approach me about how to get started. The same questions come up: “What stuff do I need? How do I choose a pattern? How do I pick colors? Where should I sew? And how DO you sew, anyway?”

Beginners, Amy’s got your answers.

If you’ve been timid about trying quilting, Amy’s friendly, step-by-step approach will warm you up to setting up, and help you let go of any anxiety about giving quilting a try. She makes it so you can get right to the fun of it all. And that’s what creating quilts is all about!

Here are just a few of the “keep it simple” themes throughout Amy’s book, along with a look at the beautiful quilts she’s made.

Start with a design that contains just a few colors.

There are designs in Modern Basics that make color choices an absolute cinch because they use solid-colored fabrics. If you haven’t tried quilting because the choice of fabrics at the quilt shop is overwhelming (common beginner complaint!), try one of these first:

B1058_g02 “Tumbling Cubes.” Three colors. Super-easy sewing. Cool, minimalist vibe.

B1058_g13“Basic Puzzle.” This quilt is created row by row (instead of block by block)
to create a visually complex effect with solid fabrics.

Start with a design that contains simple shapes.

Once you’re ready to play with patterned fabrics, you can jump in and try one of these gorgeous quilts. Each is deceptively simple to make because of the easy-to-sew blocks they contain.

B1058_g08“Modern Maze.” This quilt is made with just five fabrics. Plus, Amy will
introduce you to a modern marvel of a technique in quiltmaking—strip sets!

B1058_g10“Twisted Bars.” This quilt is also made with strip sets. You add a teeny-tiny twist
by tacking triangles to opposite corners of each block. Here, Amy’s created
a wonderful way to ease into using triangles in your quilts. Take
that, triangles!

Start with a design that you love so you’ll finish it!

From first fabric cut to last binding stitch, quilts do take time. They aren’t something you can typically whip up in an hour or two. You have to commit. So you’ll want to make sure you choose a design that you really love. That way, you’ll see it through to the end.

Here are two of Amy’s quilts that I personally will be seeing through to the very end, very soon.

B1058_g12“Modern Mirrors.” Boy, does this quilt speak to me. The unusual color
combination is fantastic. It reminds me of Italian spumoni. Yum.

B1058_g14“Knotted Squares.” The visual intricacies of this quilt are deceiving;
Amy’s made this design very easy to attain. Beautiful and simple.
The best kind of quilting combination.

When you finally have Amy’s book in your hands, I have one last piece of advice for beginners:

Quilting is addictive. Proceed with caution. Adjust the rest of your life accordingly.

Okay beginners and beyond, it’s time for a special giveaway! I am thrilled that Amy has offered to give a free copy of Modern Basics to one lucky winner at the wildcards this weekend. Just leave a comment about this post for your chance to win. (Please make sure to sign in before you post so I have your email address, or include it along with your comment.) Just one entry per person, please. The giveaway will close at 10 p.m. (MST) on Sunday, February 27th. I'll announce a random winner on Monday. Good luck!


And the winner via RANDOM.ORG is:

Comment #75 from Kimberly, who writes:

"After reading you post I really am looking forward to
reading this book and trying her patterns! Please pick me!"

Congratulations, Kimberly! I know you'll just love Amy's new book.

One last thing… I’ve heard so many people say they want to quilt, they wish they could quilt, etc. With Amy’s Modern Basics, it’s time. Amy’s book will smash your intimidation at the first page, so have no fear—get ready, get set, and go for it!


You can learn more about Amy at her blog, Amy’s Creative Side. And check out another incredible creation of hers, The Sewing Summit, to be held in Salt Lake City this October. Can’t wait!

Amy’s blog tour also includes these fun, quilt-loving blogs.

February 21st: Piece N Quilt       
February 22nd: SewCalGal
February 23rd: Old Red Barn Co
February 24th: Terri's Notebook
February 25th: Crazy Mom Quilts
February 27th: BumbleBeans
February 28th: Fat Quarter Shop
March 1st: One Shabby Chick
March 2nd: Canton Village Quilt Works
March 3rd: Diary of a Quilter
March 4th: Fat Quarterly
March 5th: Amylouwho

Follow Amy's blog tour and enter each day's drawing for your chance to win a free copy of her beautiful book!

160 thoughts on “Don’t Miss Modern Basics (and a marvelous giveaway!)”

  1. I’d love to win a copy of this book. It would help me with my quilting & I love the patterns. Thanks for hosting…
    mistyfuji (at) yahoo (dot) com


  2. Such good advice. I am a beginner and i am learning so much from lovely people like you who are happy to share their wisdom.
    Thank you for sharing.


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