Kansas Troubles


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I signed up for my first quilting class more than 25 years ago at a local quilt shop. When I admired a pattern with houses and stars, the owner asked if I’d like to make a sample for the shop with my payment as a kit for the same project. I returned a week later with two completed quilts – one for the shop and one for me. The sample for the shop was made exactly like the pattern had instructed with dozens of template pieces and y-seams. My quilt was a bit different… I had simplified the pattern by using connecting corners and layered triangles. That’s when the shop owner informed me, “You’ll never amount to anything as a quilter if you can’t follow instructions.”

I took this as a challenge.

For the next few years, I made little quilts to sell and peddled my own patterns locally until I finally took the leap and attended International Quilt Market. A Block-of-the-Month quilt I’d created using mostly Moda fabrics caught their attention and I was asked to join the Moda Designer team the following market. That was almost 17 years ago. More than 50 fabric collections later, I still embrace the nature-inspired color palette and prints that are Kansas Troubles’ classics.

I’m continually learning and growing as a designer, developing more simplified ways to piece traditional quilt blocks using my Layered Patchwork technique. I enjoy sharing my quilts and methods with quilters all over the country, teaching at quilt guilds, shops and on cruises. What a delightful way to spend your life, surrounded by quilts and quilters!

  • KT August Special
    Bend in the RoadOur new Kit To Quilt series is off to a great start! We're thrilled that so many of you have signed up to receive our Mystery Kit six times a year. Now, we'd like to share with everyone else what you missed and give you the opportunity… Read more »
  • Moda Summer Charm Swap Week #6
    This week, Vanessa Goertzen, of Lella Boutique, shares her quilt using a charm pack from Lisa Bongean's wonderful red, white and blue collection. I'm a little partial to red/white/blue since my birthday falls on July 5th. I try to set aside time to make myself a little quilt each summer… Read more »
  • Unpacking...and repacking
    KT WinnerFinally catching up after two weeks on the road. Congratulations to the winner of our Mini Table Treats 4-pack of patterns.Roxanne B. - Twice in PA this month and I will miss you. I would love to catch your layered technique workshop. I guess I'll just have to come… Read more »
  • Moda Summer Charm Swap Week #5
    This week's charm swap challenge was for Lisa Bongean of Primitive Gatherings. Barb & Mary of Me and My Sister Designs sent one of their charm packs to Lisa to do her magic. And she did! What an adorable little quilt for all of Lisa's ducklings (read grankids).Find Lisa's instructions… Read more »
  • Moda Summer Charm Swap Week #4
    Barb Groves and Mary Jacobson of Me and My Sister Designs always keep us in stitches. This week is no exception with their adorable charm quilt using a Minnick & Simpson charm pack and fabric.Find the pattern for this charming quilt HERE Read more »
  • 20 Years of KTQ
    As I'm writing my quilting life story that covers the past 20 years, it's still hard to believe I'm been designing fabric for Moda and making quilts this long. I'm on the road teaching, but in the evenings, I'm trying to put into words how much this journey has transformed… Read more »
  • Moda Summer Charm Swap Week #3
    It's Week #3 of our Moda Summer Charm Swap. I'm loving the projects so far and can't wait to see what Laurie has in store for us. Find her quilt HERE. Check out all the designer's blogs at the links below. See you next Wednesday!July 3 ~ Sherri McConnell  https://www.aquiltinglife.com/July… Read more »
  • On the Road Again...
    I'm off on another adventure with my grandaughter, Aleece. We're heading to The Olde Country Store in Intercourse, PA this week for workshops and a trunk show Friday & Saturday. I'll share my Layered Patchwork technique to simplify flying geese in Chasing Stars, and a goose tracks block in the… Read more »
  • Moda Summer Charm Swap - Week #2
     Vintage Charm by Sherri McConnell A few months ago, several of us were chatting at market - three designers that create brighter fabrics and three of us on the darker side. We hatched a plan to swap charm packs and play outside of our normal boxes. What fun we've had!On… Read more »
  • KT July Special & More
    KT WinnerCongratulations to:chasepell -Love prairie winds a bunch, I'm totally gonna have to make it soon. I remember piecing a bunch of layered patchwork geese for gooseberry lane, and your method saved me so much time and cutting. Hopefully I can make it to one of your retreats soon as… Read more »

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