Applique with Kay: Book-A-Round Day

>> Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Today is my turn on Kay Mackenzie's Book-A-Round.
I am thrilled to be able to share Kay's new book with you.

This is Kay's second book {and second book-a-round!} I found Kay in blog land shortly before her first book was released. Actually, I think it was her posts about the process of getting her first book published that drew me into her blog.

I have been quilting since 1997 and have always admired applique. But I always wanted a quick finish and avoided the "A" word for many years - thinking it was too time consuming and precise for me. I love using bright colours and mixing contemporary fabrics with traditional block patterns. When I found Kay's first book I was finally ready to explore applique my way - with lots of colour!

The flowers in my banner this month are from Kay's first book.

I used them in this quilt that I made for one of my nieces. You can read about this quilt here.
I hope you'll take some time and explore my blog a bit. You can check out my tutorials here.

I asked Kay a couple of questions about colourful fabrics and applique. I also made a project with one of the blocks in the book. I hope you enjoy both!

How would you advise someone to shop for appliqué background fabrics if they've never done appliqué before? Is there a foolproof fabric?

It actually all depends on the look you want for your project. I guess white or cream is pretty foolproof, especially for the old-timey blocks in this book. I use them a lot, especially cream. I enjoy subtle tone-on-tone prints but there's nothing wrong with solids. Toiles can work beautifully as backgrounds too. A black background is striking and dramatic. What you want in the end is contrast between your background and your appliqué motifs. That will set off your appliqué the most effectively.

{I picked my background fabric from this collection of fabrics}

I was wondering how you go about deciding on background fabrics. Do you find the background to match your appliqué shape colours or do you match your appliqué to the background?

It can work either way for me.
It just depends on what I've got in my stash,
the project, and the final look that I have for it in my mind's eye.

This is one of the sample projects in the book that caught MY eye!

Do you have any tips for scale of prints on fabrics for appliqué - specifically I guess for the Baltimore album 'look'? Is there a size you would recommend - or one that doesn't 'work' as well.

I don't think there's any right or wrong for that. You can't even tell a large-scale print is large-scale when you cut it into smaller pieces. Just go for what looks good to you. Tone prints work great, and you can work in plaids, stripes, polka dots, prints, whatever! A surprise when you look close is fun and can add a spark.

Here is my project: a distelfink pillow cover

Made with fabric scraps leftover from my Layer Cake of Prayer Flag by April Cornell
and a fat quarter of kona solid to go with my Layer Cake Quilt Along Quilt!

Kay's applique blocks are very simple and versatile.
Plus, she gives great advice and tips without making me feel like
I should know it all already!

She explains several different methods of applique and makes it,
well, hard to resist!

Plus, the CD makes it easy to print out accurate
{with NO enlarging required!}
block templates
for whatever method of applique you choose - in 5 different block sizes!

Here are my applique fabrics spread out on top of the template.
I even made notes around the edges of the template as I went.

{donated by her publisher, That Patchwork Place}




Thanks for visiting today! Remember there are more stops on the Book-a- Round. You can still go to Kay's blog for a guided tour.

With Joy,
Sarah Vee

p.s. Thank you for all of your kind comments! I am reading them all, but using my husband's work computer so I'm unable to take the time to reply to you. Normally, I do! And for sure, you will be receiving an email from me if you are the winner!!


Rhonda the Rambler March 29, 2011 at 7:13 AM  

I sooooo want to get my hands on this book because I have tried applique (various different methods) and have had no success at it. I am hoping this would help.

Michelle March 29, 2011 at 7:15 AM  

i would love to win this, Sarah! i haven't done much applique work.. i find it intimidating too!

DebrafromMD March 29, 2011 at 8:07 AM  

The more I hear about this book, the more I want my own copy. It's already on my book wish list if I don't win a copy on the Book-A-Round. Fingers crossed!

Kathy H March 29, 2011 at 8:55 AM  

I have been reading about this book all week and it looks like it would be perfect to work with. I love that there are different size blocks all ready to go with the cd. Thanks for the chance to win a copy.

Unknown March 29, 2011 at 9:34 AM  

Sarah I would love to be a winner. I also love your blog.....

Unknown March 29, 2011 at 9:54 AM  

I would love to expand my resources with this book. A must have! Thanks for the giveaway!

darlene March 29, 2011 at 10:18 AM  

I would love to have a copy of this new book.

Dolores March 29, 2011 at 10:32 AM  

I really like the black background you used. It shows up the colours that you used in your distelfink. Thanks for a chance to win this wonderful book.

Sundar Koyal March 29, 2011 at 10:33 AM  

Appliqueing has always been such a mystery to me, until I read all the reviews of this book. I would love the chance to win this book so that I can broaden my horizens in the world of quilting.

Lisa England March 29, 2011 at 10:41 AM  

I've been following the blog hop about this book and it looks great. I love your pillow cover and your choice of fabrics! Thanks for the chance to win.

Joanna March 29, 2011 at 10:47 AM  

Compliments on your blog banner and nice to know your inspiration was Kay. You have a lovely blog, and the quilt you made for your niece is gorgeous. I'd love to win Kay's book because everything I've seen of it is beautiful.

Deb G. in VA March 29, 2011 at 11:08 AM  

Kay's new book looks wonderful! I would love to win a copy! Thanks for the chance!

BillieBee (billiemick) March 29, 2011 at 11:20 AM  

This book just keeps calling's the birds...grin.

KaHolly March 29, 2011 at 11:32 AM  

This book looks so terrific!!!

pinkquilter March 29, 2011 at 11:38 AM  

I love your site! I will be coming back to visit! I love how you put things from her book and telling us how she answers question and doesnt make you feel like we should already know the answer! That is important to me! I love her book and am praying I win!!! I want it so badly! Thank you for hosting today! Your the best! Looking forward to see more of you!! Have a great day!!

Linda E in NM March 29, 2011 at 11:38 AM  

This looks like a wonderful book. I especially like that you can get the appliques in different sizes, neat idea.
Sure hope I can win!

Anne March 29, 2011 at 12:03 PM  

Your projects are wonderful! I adore that Distelfink design with your fabric selections.

Sallie March 29, 2011 at 12:21 PM  

Great post. I would love to win this book. Thanks for the chance.

Mary March 29, 2011 at 12:28 PM  

This book looks terrific for us appliquers. Thank you for the opportunity to win.

Beth March 29, 2011 at 1:14 PM  

I love your use of color in applique! I am a much more reserved quilter, and I find the combination of your vivid color choices and Kay's charming patterns to be quite inspiring.

wordygirl at earthlink dot net

Marcia W. March 29, 2011 at 1:15 PM  

The bird is my favorite applique. I want to learn to applique and this book sounds like a great guide for a beginner like me. Thanks to you and Kay for the opportunity to enter (and win) this giveaway. alternate email mlwright29(at)hotmail(dot)com

VickiT March 29, 2011 at 1:27 PM  

I love what I've seen so far of this book, especially the CD to print the templates in any size I want to use.

BeachQuilter March 29, 2011 at 1:35 PM  

Great questions (and answers!) This book is on my must have list. I'm pleased to have found your site!

Vicki B March 29, 2011 at 2:04 PM  

This was a very fun read for me. First time on your site but I will be back.Love the book and the projects you have done with the patterns great inspiration. Thank you

Laura March 29, 2011 at 2:10 PM  

I am a very inexperienced appliquer and would love this book to help further my skills! the cd is such a great idea!

susan March 29, 2011 at 2:13 PM  

This was a great post! Love your blog and would love this book - Sue

Sherri March 29, 2011 at 3:05 PM  

I can't tell you how much I appreciate you and the other bloggers doing this give-a-way! I would love to win this book! Thanks again!

Ed and Lori G March 29, 2011 at 3:14 PM  

Wow Sarah, I LOVE your motto: "Quilt Something Happy!" Quilting and my quilts make me happy.

magicthimblecreations March 29, 2011 at 3:26 PM  

This is my first visit to your blog, but not my last. I love the vibs of your positive outlook and your happy colors. Thanks for hosting this give away...

Marjorie March 29, 2011 at 3:58 PM  

Sarah, truly enjoyed reading your blog and appreciate an opportunity to win the applique book. The past year, the world of applique has really opened up to me, and I'm loving it.
Marjorie Busby (

Anonymous,  March 29, 2011 at 4:08 PM  

I love your site header!! I'm keeping my fingers crossed!! I just bought Kay's first book, so I'm really, really hoping I'll get lucky and win her second book. Kelly midnightsewin at yahoo dot com Thanks!

Carla G March 29, 2011 at 4:47 PM  

I would love to win this book! I've always thought applique was so neat, but I've never tried it. Thanks for a great giveaway!

Sewgirl March 29, 2011 at 5:06 PM  

Great to find your blog. I have been enjoying finding new folks blogs to read...but how do you post and stay on top of everyone else, and get anything done? BTW, would love to win a copy of Kay's book. It looks terrific.

Jen March 29, 2011 at 5:32 PM  

I love the idea of a CD with this book, it's practically fool-proof! thanks for the giveaway, I love your applique needlekeeper!

Barbara C March 29, 2011 at 6:19 PM  

This book looks so interesting - I'd love to win it.

Candace March 29, 2011 at 6:32 PM  

I would really like to win a copy of this book! It looks like sew much fun!! Thanks a ton :D

Misty March 29, 2011 at 7:42 PM  

It was nice to read about your experience of not wanting to do applique and then eventually changing your mind. Sometimes, you just need to right tool or approach to get started learning a new technique. I'm pretty new to applique and I have this book on my wish list!

Michele T March 29, 2011 at 8:00 PM  

Oh my gosh! You came to Canada and now you drove past my neck of the woods (Northwestern Ontario)- what a thrill! I would love to win the book, I love the look of applique. Thanks for the chance!

lovetostitch March 29, 2011 at 8:32 PM  

Sarah, You write with such joy, and I feel your excitement!! Great post on the Book a Round and I cant wait to get my copy of Kay's book. Love the color choice on your pillow!

scottylover March 29, 2011 at 8:58 PM  

Would love to have this book! Thanks for the chance to win it!

Sandy A

WoolenSails March 29, 2011 at 10:39 PM  

I love the projects you made from the book and wonderful fabric choices. You definitely make me want this book, even more. I love books that you can mix and match patterns with.


Nancy Sue March 29, 2011 at 11:56 PM  

Thank you for participating in the blog hop. I LOVE the "niece's" quilt. I'm totally intimidated by applique, so maybe this book is exactly what I need to boost my confidence (ie hold my appliqued hand!).
nsue21702 at gmail dot com

Lyn March 30, 2011 at 1:16 AM  

Orangey-red and blue....a great combination. The distelfink came out great! (That tablerunner is attractive too...going to start that next?)

Unknown March 30, 2011 at 7:56 AM  

Thank you Sarah, for reviewing Kay's book. The more I read about it, the more I want it! :-) I love many of your ideas and the colors you use are wonderful! Thank you for sharing with us!

LesQuilts March 30, 2011 at 8:03 AM  

Hi Sarah!
Thanks for participating in the bloghop and having the giveaway!
I am a die hard appliquer and I would love, love, love a copy of this wonderful book!
Take care, Leslie

Gerald March 30, 2011 at 8:15 AM  

Another great site to visit as I continue on this blog hop. I have seen and read some amazing stories on the blogs and of course bookmarked many to come back to each day whilst I enjoy my morning coffee.

This book looks like a great one to have. Hope I win one,

I too am using my husband's computer as I type, so if I win you can contact me at my email address of Thanks, Lorena

Mommarock March 30, 2011 at 8:37 AM  

Thank you for help with fabric selection. For applique using printed fabric for me i thought that would be difficult, but somehow you make it all seem possible. Thank you.

pinkquilter March 30, 2011 at 9:38 AM  

The sample project you have on your site is just to die for! I have to make that one!!! Oh please pick me! I keep coming back and looking at your site just drooling over everything! I think it's a must that everyone own this book!!! LOL Have a great sewing day!

Mishka March 30, 2011 at 10:08 AM  

I have Kay's first book, and would love to have her second one too.

sophie March 30, 2011 at 10:33 AM  

I seems I want to add at least a little appliqué to all my quilts and I think this book would be a fantastic resource. I'm glad to know about it, whether I win or not ... but winning a copy would be awesome.

Penny from S.C. March 30, 2011 at 10:36 AM  

Oh, I'd love to win this book. I love her work. Thanks for the chance.

brenda March 30, 2011 at 11:03 AM  

I'm enjoying reading these blogs every day and would love a chance to win this book.

Sandy March 30, 2011 at 12:31 PM  

I am very excited about this book, and the more I read about it...the more I am likely to buy it even if I don't win. Could really use the needle holder too...even tho it is wonky ;)
Heck, it is made by a fellow Canadian quilter, of course I want it!

Angie in SoCal March 30, 2011 at 12:32 PM  

I really like your ideas for using Kay's blocks - expands my thoughts on how to use them. Good questions. Like your blog.

Marilyn S March 30, 2011 at 12:45 PM  

I love to machine applique, but haven't tried any other technique. It would be fun to have instructions and ideas. I would love this book.
Thanks. Great blog too.

Dee March 30, 2011 at 12:47 PM  

I would love to have this book. Had the opportunity to her her lecture in DesMoines - such as creative mind.

Lena March 30, 2011 at 4:24 PM  

What a cute needle holder - and the book is quite lovely. I would be very pleased to be a winner! I haven't used a CD to create patterns and it sounds much less time-consuming. Would like to give it a try!

Unknown March 30, 2011 at 5:31 PM  

love the handprint block.would be awsume to win the book.Thanks for the chance to win.

Janet March 30, 2011 at 6:06 PM  

This looks like a wonderful book. Thanks for a chance to win.

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