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Downton Abbey Mystery Quilt Along!

The 2015 Downton Abbey Mystery Quilt Along Begins January 4th!

2015DAMQABadgeWe’re coming back with another mystery quilt especially for fans of Downton Abbey! And even if you’re not a fan, you can still play along.

Last year’s quilt along attracted nearly 3,300 participants from 50 US states, 9 Canadian provinces, and 24 additional countries around the world. We expect the excitement to continue with the next quilt along, and we hope you’ll join us for this one!

What is a Mystery Quilt Along?

Well first, let’s talk about what a quilt along is, and then I’ll explain the mystery part. I’ve designed a new quilt based on Downton Abbey, and I think lots of people would love to have a quilt to remind them of the series they love. So I’m inviting you to join me in making the blocks for the quilt.

I’m known widely as a die-cutting quilter, but I know that most quilters are not. So this year, the patterns will be written for rotary cutting but include die cutting instructions for those who choose to cut that way. No matter how you plan to cut, all are welcome!

Now what makes this a Mystery Quilt Along is that you will only see the quilt one block at a time! So you won’t know exactly what you’re making until the very end. This is exciting for some, and fear-inspiring for others, but rest assured that many of my trusted advisors (as well as Andover) have seen the quilt designs in all three colorways, and everyone loves them.

When does the Mystery Quilt Along start?

You can sign up for updates now, and registration will begin in mid- to late-September. The actual Mystery Quilt Along begins on January 4th, once the Downton Abbey series airs in the US. Over the coming weeks and months, I’ll be posting more details, the full schedule, and details on how to join the live Google/Twitter chats.

What does the quilt look like?

I can’t tell you how many people ask this question, and I always say, “It’s a mystery!!!” But I will tell you a few things about the quilt so you can start planning.

There are three colorways you can choose from: Team Cora, Team Rose, and Team Carson. The finished quilt is 72″ x 92″. There’s not really a border on this quilt, but you’re welcome to add one or more to make your quilt larger.

You’ll need to pick your colorway when you sign up, and you won’t be able to switch after the quilt along starts. You can certainly sign up to make more than one, but switching midway through is not an option.

Do I have to use the Downton Abbey fabric in my quilt?

It’s your quilt. Do what you want! I just think it is really cool to have a Downton Abbey quilt made with Downton Abbey fabrics, don’t you? Here’s a link to the fabric requirements so you know how much you’ll need. Keep in mind this is a tentative list of fabrics; we’re still doing sampling so don’t go whole hog and buy everything right now.

Will the pattern have EDeN Instructions like last year?

Yes and no. If you’re not familiar, EDeN stands for Equivalent Die Notation System, and it’s a way of standardizing common quilt shapes across all cutting systems to make it easier for people to know what tools they need to cut their quilts. Last year’s pattern was written primarily for those who die cut, and rotary instuctions were included. It turned out though that 90% of you ended up rotary cutting your quilts. With that in mind, this year’s pattern will be primarily written for rotary cutting, and the die cutting instructions included.  This will be a more natural way of reading the pattern I think. If you’re rotary cutting, you can just ignore the die-cutting notation.

Well, I’m going to die cut. What dies do I need?

If you are going to die cut, you need to familiarize yourself with EDeN. You can download a complete EDeN Chart over at the EDeN website, but a specific chart for the quilt along will be included in the pattern.

In terms of dies, if you participated in last year’s quilt along, you probably have most of what you need.  Here are the list of dies used through the project:

HST-2

QST-4

SOP-6

SQ-2

STR-2

HST-3

QST-5

SQ-4

HST-4

QST-6

HST-5

How much does it cost?

There are a couple of cost components to keep in mind:

  1. The pattern fee. If you sign up by November 21, the cost is $18.95. Signups after that date go up to $23.95.
  2. Your fabric. I won’t be providing quilt top kits this year, so you’ll need to shop your local quilt shop or favorite online dealer for a kit. I’ll have a list for you so you know what shops are participating.
  3. Shop fees. Some shops charge an additional program fee to participate in their events.

What does the pattern fee include?

  • Digital patterns for the colorway you have selected, and non-expiring access to the files. (That means even if you sign up late, you’ll have access to everything that’s been revealed as of your signup date, and you’ll be able to get back to them at any time.)
  • Rotary and die cutting charts tailored to the quilt along.
  • Block tutorials, videos, and other content to assist in the construction of the quilt.
  • Access to a private forum where you may post photos, questions and comments during the quilt along if you need additional assistance and want to interact with other participants.

What if I’ve never seen Downton Abbey?

Well, we’re not the television police, but personally I think you’re missing out.  I understand the urge though to keep NOT watching – why break your streak, right? After all, I’m still a holdout for Star Wars – haven’t seen any of it, and I’m on a pretty good roll now.  However, I do know who Hans Solo and Princess Leia are, I know the difference between an Ewok and a Wookie, and that James Earl Jones was Luke’s father, whatever that means.  All I’m saying is… if you’re not gonna watch, then just soak up some details so you’re not completely at a loss.

I want to give you money now. Where do I sign up?

Patience, grasshopper. We’re in the final stages of testing the new site which will enable you to fork over your cash for this project. Make sure you’re on the mailing list so you’re the first to be notified when we’re all ready!

I still have more questions that you haven’t answered yet!

We’re still working on the details of the quilt along, and we’ll update this page with information as it becomes available. For now, you can sign up for updates, and be among the first to hear about the mystery quilt! If you really have a burning question, just hang onto it until signups open.

If you’re a shop owner who wants to participate, sign up here – there’s a special list just for you!