Splendid Sampler II

Rhonda Pierce Holding SCHMETZ Super Demo NeedleHello dear Splendid Sampler II fans! My name is Rhonda Pierce and I love to sew & quilt. I am spokesperson for SCHMETZ home sewing needles North America. Yes, in this pic, I’m holding a giant needle, the SCHMETZ “Super” demo needle. We travel together when I give SCHMETZ classes. In The Splendid Sampler 2, you will find my block Get To The Point on page 111.

To complete Pat Sloan and Jane Davidson’s sentence, I’m living my best quilting life when… I’m sharing needle facts, and at the same time learning from my awesome creative sewing public. That little 2” piece of steel, the SCHMETZ needle, has provided me with an awesome career and friendships around the world. I am forever grateful. Because of listening to YOU, I pushed SCHMETZ to color code needles by needle type and size. Color bands make needle identification so much easier. No longer do you need to squint to read the size imprinted on the needle shank. Check out the chart below. The upper color band identifies the needle type (left column) and the lower band identifies the SCHMETZ Needles Color Code Chartneedle size (right column). Universal needles have only one band of color to identify size. Feel free to download this handy chart: https://www.schmetzneedles.com/schmetz-color-code-chart/

SCHMETZ Microtex NeedlesMy favorite needle is SCHMETZ Chrome Professional Grade Microtex size 80/12. Using the chart to the right, the top color band is purple for Microtex and the bottom color band is orange. On this project, I first used SCHMETZ Chrome Microtex 80/12, but found the needle a bit heavy, so switched to a smaller needle, size 70/10, lower green. SCHMETZ Chrome Microtex 70/10 and Aurifil are perfect partners with Moda Fabrics.

On this project, what needle type are you using? What size? Popular needle types are Microtex, Quilting and Universal. Popular sizes are 70/10 – 80/12. With SCHMETZ you have options! Post pics of your Get To The Point block on the Splendid Sampler website to be in the running for a SCHMETZ giveaway. Sew SCHMETZ!

Get To The Point Block, SCHMETZ Chrome Microtex 70/10, Aurifil, Moda Fabrics
Congratulations to Pat and Jane for another awesome Splendid Sampler! Thank you everyone for making SCHMETZ needles a sewing room essential.

PS: Two more things –

  • Enjoy my free monthly SCHMETZ newsletters. Each issue includes new products in the marketplace and a needle fact that you can copy & paste into your own newsletters and websites. Sign up here: info@schmetzneedles.com.
  • Check out my new personal blog: www.sewmorestitches.com/blog. Get a glimpse into my world with creative & awesome friends… sew like you! 😊

Here is a link to their website. Enter the giveaway and learn more about their project:

The Splendid Sampler ™ 2 sew-along and giveaway Feb 21

Sew SCHMETZ & Grabbit® Too!


Which needle is your favorite for piecing quilts?

Which SCHMETZ needle is your favorite for piecing quilts?

Use SCHMETZ Chrome for smoother stitching.

Why Chrome?

· Less friction on thread passing through eye ·
· Penetrates fabric with less resistance ·
· Smoother stitch creation ·
· Resists hear for improved durability & performance ·
· A premium performance needle ·

SCHMETZ Chrome is available in eight needle types in a variety of sizes.

Available online at www.SCHMETZneedles.com
or at local quilt shops and sewing machine dealers.



SCHMETZ Chrome Professional Grade Microtex Needles

SCHMETZ Chrome Professional Grade Microtex Needles

The SCHMETZ Microtex, generically known as a sharp, is available with a chrome finish. The Microtex Needle has a very slim acute point. Yes it’s very sharp! Quilters love piecing & quilting with Microtex & is nearly mandatory when using batiks. Sewists love Microtex for topstitching & general sewing. Both love Microtex for precision stitches.

Available in sizes 60/8, 70/10 and 80/12.

Why Chrome?

· Less friction on thread passing through eye ·
· Penetrates fabric with less resistance ·
· Smoother stitch creation ·
· Resists heat – improved durability & performance ·
· A premium needle not available in big box stores ·



Swirly Girls — Making Magic Happen

Susan Emory and Christine Van Buskirk, Kindred Spirits

Susan Emory and Christine Van Buskirk, Kindred Spirits

Some of the most original patterns in the quilt industry are coming from the dynamic duo of Susan Emory and Christine Van Buskirk, a.k.a — Swirly Girls Design, Inc. out of Midlothian, Virginia. Since they established their partnership in 2008, they’ve made 100+ quilts a year, written two books, designed 20+ quilt patterns, and four fabric collections for Michael Miller.

So — how did this magic happen?

Susan Emory is a fifth generation quilter. Growing up, she believed everybody knew how to quilt. She went to school for graphic design and worked at an ad agency in Seattle. When asked where she gets her inspiration, she says “I love to make custom one-of-a-kind things for people and I sew every day. All aspects of quilting bring me joy — appliqué, piecing, paper piecing, curved piecing, hand piecing, and the actual quilting. I also do mixed media on canvas . . . and I upcycle furniture. I love to find a piece, an ugly piece — like this china hutch — and give it new life with fabric or paint.”

Christine Van Buskirk grew up learning the basics of garment sewing from her mother, who sewed all her own clothes.  But during her college years, then graduate school, motherhood and a job at IBM, her own sewing was limited to things like fun, easy-fitting Halloween costumes. During the 90’s, she was intrigued by her mother’s newfound love of quilting, and inspired by Alex Anderson to give it a try. Living in upstate New York, she took her first class at a local quilt shop. Logical engineering Christine fell in love. She says, “I was chomping at the bit to try every new technique.  There is so much geometry in quilting and I love playing with graph paper! The first block that made me really happy was 16 pieces coming to a perfect point in the middle. I didn’t know it was supposed to be hard.”

Swirly Girls at work.

Swirly Girls at work.

Their two worlds collided in 2002 when Susan and Christine’s husbands were each transferred and the two families moved to Virginia the same week. Both new in town, looking to make new friends  — they ended up at Quilter’s Corner in Midlothian, Virginia.

They soon realized they were kindred spirits — with two very different points of view. Susan was doing long-arm quilting full-time, and after she purchased the quilt shop — Christine became the manager. They loved designing quilts together. They established Swirly Girls Design because they saw a need in the marketplace for patterns that would showcase the newer fabric styles — the larger prints, the directional prints, etc. Swirly Girls patterns became known for having excellent written directions with a clever twist — like an unexpected piecing technique.

microtex-swirlygirlsWhen Susan and Christine were running the quilt shop — “SCHMETZ was the only machine needle we sold or used. We had the big display with all the different needle options. For piecing, we use the Microtex Sharp 70/10 and the 60/8 for machine appliqué. We use the Quilting needle to do our quilting, and we tell our students to use the Embroidery needle when sewing with decorative threads in appliqué projects.”

"Delightful" Books, Patterns and Fabrics

“Delightful” Books, Patterns and Fabrics

The Swirly Girls were often inspired by Michael Miller fabrics — and at the 2008 International Quilt Market, they had a meeting with Kathy Miller. “Delightful” was their last collection. “Daydream,” their fifth fabric collection, is newly released. Today’s quilters are inspired by Swirly Girls patterns, books and fabric lines. What’s next? They have created two quilting rulers for Creative Grids. And you MUST check out their very unique line of Monogram Buttons for Dill Buttons. Each button has a nine-hole grid so you can stitch out any letter or number. Once you stitch the letter, the buttons can be attached to any project to spell monograms, names, dates etc.  It’s such a great idea — you’ll wonder why you didn’t think of it yourself!


Nancy Mahoney’s Sewing Tips

Nancy Mahoney's Sewing Tips

Nancy Mahoney says . . .

Trying to learn paper piecing is like trying to learn ballroom dancing looking in a mirror … upside down and backwards.  Here are my three best tips:

• Precut your pieces

• Use Martingales’s Papers for Foundation Piecing

• Use a SCHMETZ 80/12 —