Blossoms Quilt Sampler with Rulerwork Part 2

I’m BERNINA Expert Amanda Murphy and I’m back to show you how to quilt the first two blocks of the BERNINA Blossoms Sampler.

BERNINA Blossoms Quilt with Rulerwork

The BERNINA Blossoms Sampler

BERNINA Blossoms Rulerwork Sampler Series

Block 1

BERNINA_Blossoms_Sampler_Block_2Block 2

I’ve prepared a video to walk you through the steps, but personally I also like to have a printout to refer to when quilting, so I’ve prepared PDF directions with diagrams for you as well.

Download a  PDF with quilting instructions here. 

Make sure to watch the video at the end of this post for tips and tricks though—and pay special attention to how I’m holding the ruler and positioning my hands in general if you are on a domestic machine or a sit-down Q 20! You can find more tips in my new book on rulerwork— The Ultimate Guide to Rulerwork Quilting for C&T Publishing.

To quilt with rulers on a domestic it is very helpful to have a flat table or to have the machine sunk in a cabinet. I also like to use a Supreme Slider or Free-motion Glider.

BERNINA 790 Plus for Rulerwork Quilting

How I set up my BERNINA 790 PLUS for rulerwork quilting

Lower your feed dogs. IF YOU HAVE A MACHINE WITH A HOVER YOU MUST TURN IT OFF! You don’t want to be pushing a ruler into the foot and have the foot come up.  I show you how to turn off a hover on the 7 Series in the video.

Layer your backing, batting, and quilt top and pin or spray baste the sandwich. I prefer pinning to spray basting but if pins bother you you can also run long basting stitches by hand with water soluble thread every few inches. Then you don’t have to mess with taking pins out as you come to them.

BERNINA_Blossoms_Quilt_SamplerPin basting about a fist's-width apart

Pin basting about a fist’s-width apart. Make sure your pins aren’t too far apart or the layers will shift.

Baste all the way around the quilt top in the binding area. I like to use a ruler for this because it gives me an opportunity to warm up, but you can use a walking foot if you prefer. If you are using a ruler, you can either keep the stitches long as they will be covered by the binding OR you can use the opportunity to practice your stitch length.


For domestic machines, it is important to establish a rhythm. You want to move smooth and steady.   Happy machines sounds happy and sad machines sound sad, and you don’t want a sad machine because you will have sad stitches, so go for a smooth purr. If you hear your machine speeding up and slowing down and lurching in terms of speed, there is no way your stitches will be even. If you struggle with this try moving your speed slider closer to the left and then floor the foot pedal. You might need to play with the speed to find the ideal setting for you.

(Yes, if you are lucky enough to own a Q 20 you can use stitch regulation with rulers and have the machine handle the stitch length even while you vary speed, but the rest of us have to keep steady ourselves when using rulers.)

When stitching a straight line you want to go for a stitch length that looks like it is between a 2.5 mm and 3.0 mm stitch if you were piecing. The feed dogs are down and you have a ruler foot on so the stitch length has nothing to do with machine settings. If your stitches are even 80% of the time you should give yourself a pat on the pack. Actually, give yourself a pat on the back regardless because you are conquering your quilting fears and trying a new technique and we are in a global pandemic and the world needs MORE pats on the back!


Too long is when the threads will catch in the wash or on your rings or are a temptation for your cat.


Too short is when you just give up when you try to get the stitches out because it is too hard.

You’ll quilt the area between the sashing and the border, then quilt around each block, then mark the blocks and quilt a rulerwork design in the first and second block as directed.

Quilting the BERNINA Blossoms Sampler: Stabilization & Blocks 1 and 2

I show you two different options for starting and ending threads so that you have options.

Note that I never ever bring my ruler over to my stitching area until I put my foot down. This is probably the most important piece of advice I can give you. Get into the habit of making sure your foot is down BEFORE the you bring the ruler over. Also note that I keep both fingers from both hands on the ruler and fingers from both hands on the fabric at all times.

If you are using the original BERNINA ruler sets I recommend taping them together to give you more surface area with which to work. Your motifs might be a slightly different size than mine and that is okay! I showed you how in the the videos I did for my BERNINA Rulerwork Sampler.

If you feel nervous use matching thread and your mistakes won’t show.

So now for the giveaway; did I mention I was going to be visiting here a lot in the next few months BERNINA and I can’t tell you why yet but we have some fun things planned! What types of free-motion motifs would you like to see me cover? Comment below for a chance to win a copy of all my patterns for my brand new line of quilting cottons for Contempo of Benartex—Crescendo! If you love these fabrics, please ask your local shop to order them through Contempo of Benartex and join us in my Facebook Group, Quilting with Amanda Murphy, where we’ll have some fun sew-alongs this fall!

Crescendo line of fabrics for Contempo of Benartex

My Crescendo line of fabrics for Contempo of Benartex

One lucky WeAllSew reader has the chance to win my new patterns for Cresendo!

The giveaway is now closed, thanks to our WeAllSew fans who entered. Congratulations to the winner, WeAllSew fan @ababe!

Amanda Murphy patterns for Crescendo

All you have to do is post a comment below and answer the question:

“What types of quilting patterns would you like to tackle next?”

The the giveaway is open through Friday, August 21st.

The giveaway is open to residents of the 50 United States and the District of Columbia. One comment per fan. Comment must be submitted to the blog by Friday, August 21, 2020 at 11:59 PM Central Time. Winner will be chosen randomly. Winner will be notified by email and will have 48 hours to contact to claim the prize.

Good luck!

I’ll meet you back here in two weeks with your finished BERNINA Blossoms top so we can finish our sampler!

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72 comments on “Blossoms Quilt Sampler with Rulerwork Part 2”

  • So intrigued to try all of your techniques, but really looking for tips on how to plan the quilting. I am interested in whole-cloth quilting, and how to plan it, start it, and keep it interesting.

  • I am interested in seeing your video and getting more information on the whole cloth quilt you talked about on Thankful Thursday. I love the way that it is done in individual blocks.

  • Thank you Amanda for sharing your knowledge with us. I used to like piecing a quilt better then quilting it. But since I bought my Q20 I now enjoy quilting more then piecing. I’m finding because of this I’m looking for more patterns with open space so I can fill it with quilting. To answer the question, I’m looking for patterns with open spaces to fill with beautiful quilting stitches.

  • I need to answer as which type of quilting pattern first! I’ve been a life long sewer, including heirloom garments and quilts but have never machine quilted until this summer. I had a whack at it but do not yet own a walking foot or free motion foot with questionable resilts. I’m very excited to learn machine quilting properly on my beloved Bernina

  • Hello, I would like to become more confident with creating designs with my rulers and actually using them on this quilt…..I’m good with straight lines, but planning and filling areas that are a little larger (like these 12″ blocks…I become very boring…..your designs are just so interesting and pretty, not just a bunch of straight lines….Not that they don’t have a place. I want to be curvy and pretty and floating across the quilt block. Also, how to divide up a blank space into smaller segments that all work together. Thank you for doing this! Hugs.

  • So happy to see you on We All Sew! I love learning from you through Thankful Thursday and your YouTube Channel. You inspire so many with your gifts, talents and passion for the art of quilting. Thank you for teaching with the beginner in mind to the advanced quilter. Blessed!

  • I have just started learning rulerwork quilting. I would also like to learn free motion. I am planning to start this Blossom sampler and also looking forward to Amanda’s Diamonds quilting-along this fall.

  • As a beginner, I really appreciate your quilting explanations. I would like to better understand how to determine a quilting design. Another topic I’d like to understand better is using the star ruler.

  • I would like to learn how to plan a design , and what looks best with a square shaped blocks or with a more rounded shape block. What shapes complement these different quilt block shapes.

  • I’d like my next quilt to be made using a pattern containing lots of flying geese. The flying geese can have various sizes and be scrapy.
    Thanks for the opportunity to win your fabrics.

  • As far as quilting style for the flying geese quilt, I tend to like a segmented style. Curves and swirls over a geometric shape will round out the straight lines.

  • I struggle with planning “what to quilt where” when it is “custom” quilting. i also have a difficult time picking the right color(s) of thread, especially if it is E2E quilting. Thanks for your comments.

  • I’d like to see the feather templates and how to judge their placement in a border – ex: how many repeats and what if it’s not a complete design? I have such a time with borders.


  • I am new to ruler work quilting, so I’m interested in all quilting patterns. Also, I would like to know tips for how you choose the quilting patterns for the quilt. I just viewed the new rulers you have coming out and I can’t wait to see your videos on the star and lollipop rulers.

  • I am interested in learning more about whole cloth quilting with the rulers. Also learning more about how to design quilting to go with my piecing.

  • I’m always trying to perfect my quilting movements on my Q24. Swirls that look consistent and pretty at the same time is my next design to tackle.

  • I really appreciate all your informational videos and articles. I would like to know more about what design to quilt on pieced quilts using a ruler and or free hand. I’m just starting to do my own quilting on my tops…feeling a little intimidated.

  • I’d love to win! I love you fabrics and embroidery/quilting designs.
    I really want to learn more about ruler work. I’ve done a couple of simple things, but would really love to learn the more detailed designs.

  • I want to learn how to quilt different block types, how to focus on a design, and then how to fill the background in. I would also like to learn how and when to use the lollipop rulers.
    Thank you for all your teachings

  • Thank you, Amanda for your great information. I have been a quilter 70 of my 75 years and still love to quilt. I taught quilting as an adjunct professor at a local college special programs for about 10 years. I purchased the quilting rulers and foot for my Bernina about three years ago and they are still in the box. I have not had satisfactory results machine quilting in the past and am shy about using the rulers. I sooooo want to learn and hope your tutorial will give me the courage to make this work for me.

  • I would like a design to use for borders that I don;t have to mark. I can do swirls or vines with a leaf but they seem better suited to narrow borders.

  • I am so looking forward to having my new Q20 set up in a week or so to do this project! I think I’ll sew the quilt top on my 880 and then do the quilting on the Q20. Should I still use the Supreme Slider??? Nice project. I love ruler work!

  • Larger ones. I’ve started with small wall hanging sizes. I just bought the fabric for this as I like the retro colors, Nordic design & it’s a good size. Plus, I have new rulers to play with!

  • I will sometimes quilt with the embroidery machine, so learning some free motion fills would be very helpful. I first used the embroidery machine to quilt with Amanda’s Jubilee quilt. The designs look great. Thank you!

  • Have just started watching your ruler work videos. Love the methods and how you explain the creative use of the rulers for a diversity of patterns.

  • I love everything you show us. Slowly I’m getting better with the rulers. Could you have a series of free motion background fills. Thanks for all you do for us guilters.

  • I would love to know how to plan a whole cloth quilt using rulers and free motion quilting. I do love your rulers, Amanda and your heart for teaching! I have learned so much from you already. Thank you.

  • I am incorporating Amanda Murphy rulerwork in a very colorful growth chart quilt. I am interested in suggestions on selecting thread color on multi color print fabric. Ideas on which templates/designs are best on 4 inch blocks and larger fill in areas would be appreciated.

  • I like it when you describe how you decide to quilt spaces in your quilts. I look at a square and have difficulty envisioning what design will look good.

  • Would love to get more comfortable with my rulers and planning the overall quilt design.
    Thanks for the excellent instructions on the sampler, looking forward to getting more practice
    using your rulers.

  • My latest quilt top, Sedona, has plenty of different geometric designs pieced everywhere except the corners, which are fairly large negative spaces. Would like ideas on how to use ruler work!

  • Hi I really like your rulers, so thank you for those. I like the markings that are on them. I have a Bernina Q20. I would like to see info on different stitch count settings. I know I could try out the different stitch settings but what is recommended. Does the amount of quilting make a difference, or just based on what one wants to see. Or does it depend on the thread weight? Then the biggie is thread tension. Any info on this would be appreciated.
    Thank You, Vickey

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