Guest Blogger Month at the Quilting Gallery

Annie Unrein

Greetings, Quilters! I’m so pleased to be invited to be a guest blogger (thanks, Michele!) and to connect with other quilters.

I am Annie Unrein, a pattern designer and teacher who lives in St. George, Utah, and Sitka, Alaska. (Yes, I truly have the best of both worlds, as I get to enjoy the sunny desert southwest in the fall, winter, and spring and then retreat to the beauty of Alaska when it gets hot!)

A quilter for over 30 years, I have been designing patterns since 2000. In addition to patterns for quilts and lots of fun bags, purses, and fashion accessories, I also have great patterns for organizational items that help you organize all your sewing and quilting supplies. A place for everything and everything in its place is my goal. Of course, if any of you have ever seen my sewing studio, you know that is often a pie-in-the-sky-type goal!

Fortunately, I am lucky to have a husband who is very handy. We moved into a new (to us) house last spring and my pride and joy is my 19′ x 30′ sewing studio. I really love the big cutting table that Al made for me. It is sized to fit perfectly over six rolling wire basket units which hold part of my sewing stash. (See that door in the background? It opens into a big closet which holds more supplies. There is a matching closet on the other side!)

Fabrics are arranged in the wire bins by color and type. I love being able to slide out a drawer and see everything easily. Even better is being able to remove one piece of fabric without disturbing everything else.

Annie Unrein

We also bought four 4′ x 8′ sheets of 1″ thick Insulfoam at the local building supply store. Al glued them to the wall using a caulk gun and a tube of glue specially formulated for gluing foam. Then I covered the sheets with a big piece of Warm and Natural. It makes a terrific design wall!

Annie Unrein

On my design wall right now is a quilt that I am making from blocks exchanged with my best quilting buddies. The title is “You Know You Are A Quilter When. . . ” which I’ll put at the top of the quilt. I embroidered a number of quotes to go with each block. The quote by my block is, You have more projects planned than you could stitch in ten lifetimes.” Oh, how true that is for me! See the give-away below!

I get inspiration from so many talented quilters and am lucky to have Heather Purcell, aka Mother Superior of Superior Threads, as a “partner-in-crime” in many of my quilting adventures. Heather is terrific with color and design and several of my quilt patterns began in her amazing brain. (She once told me that she can actually hear the electrical currents crackling in her brain. It didn’t surprise me one bit!)

I travel to quilt shows all around the country with Superior Threads, where I get to see amazing quilts, meet talented quilters and designers, and share my patterns and designs with others.

Here’s Heather holding a quilt that we designed together. We called it Chinese New Year because it reminded us of a sky full of exploding fireworks.

Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year

I used only two fabrics to make Chinese New Year: a solid Michael Miller black and a beautiful hand-painted batik from Bold Over Batiks!. I love their bright, bold fabrics and have used them in a number of patterns. Go to my website to see kits for my Executive Carryalls and Laptop Computer Carriers made using the Bold Over Batiks! fabrics. They are stunning!

Executive Carryalls

I love to teach and was just designated an official “Superior Educator”, having spent three wonderful days teaching at the Superior Threads School of Threadology Seminar here in St. George, Utah. We introduced a brand-new product which is used to easily create texture on fabric. In one of the classes, each student texturized a piece of fabric and used it to make a cute little drawsring bag from a pattern that I designed.

Texture Magic Bag

It will be at least two or three months before this fun new product is available. So, watch my blog or subscribe to my email newsletter to be sure that you’ll be notified as soon as it is available for shipment.


Please share your ending to the sentence “You know you are a quilter when. . . “ in the comments section of the blog. We’ll choose a favorite and the winner will receive the pattern of their choice from my website, Feel free to include the name of the pattern you’d like when you submit your quote. A winner will be chosen on Thursday, February 19th.

It was a pleasure to share a little of my quilting world with you! Thanks again for the opportunity, Michele.

Happy stitching,


Annie Unrein of Patterns by Annie

26 thoughts on “Annie Unrein of Patterns by Annie

  • February 16, 2009 at 3:44 pm

    You know you’re a quilter when you are traveling in the backseat with your 1 1-2 yr old grand-daughter and she spots the BP Dahlia logo on the sign and asks if it’s my quilt!

  • February 16, 2009 at 8:01 pm

    You know your a quilter when your family eat’s on TV
    trays in the living room for week’s at a time because the dining table is “otherwise occupied”. My favourite pattern is by far Love’s Me!

  • February 17, 2009 at 3:25 am

    You know you’re a quilter if…You’d rather Cover your stash with your quilts.

  • February 17, 2009 at 4:06 am

    you can see new patterns to quilt, in the pattern on floors or tiles!!

  • February 17, 2009 at 7:02 am

    You know you’re a quilter when . . . you’d rather quilt than eat.

  • February 17, 2009 at 8:49 am

    You know you are a quilter when you cant go past a quilt shop without going in and cant walk out empty handed.

  • February 17, 2009 at 9:42 am

    You know you are a quilter when….you can’t wait for your son to leave to go away to college so you can set up a long arm frame in his room.(Instead of making a guest room!) This is of course knowing that you already have stored fabric in his closet!

  • February 17, 2009 at 9:51 am

    Sorry, I forgot to add that I especially like the 4 season pillow pattern!

  • February 17, 2009 at 9:55 am

    Great contest!
    You know you are a quilter when you have a little blurb in your will about who gets your fabric, who gets your machine, and who gets your quilts!

  • February 17, 2009 at 9:57 am

    oops, I forgot to mention, I love all your organizational patterns, but I think my fave is the bucket organizer. It was a toss up between that and the door organizer, but since I don’t have a door on my sewing studio, it came in second

  • February 17, 2009 at 10:50 am

    You know you are a quilter when all you dream about is quilting new designs.

  • February 17, 2009 at 11:07 am

    You know you are a quilter when…. you successfully share your addiction with your best friend, your coworkers, and even your 78-year-old dad! He taught me how to sew clothing, crochet, knit, woodwork, and take apart cars, years ago…. This past weekend, I ordered him an even-feed quilting foot for his 50-year-old sewing machine because he has taken up quilting, BIG TIME. Score! After all these years of traipsing into quilt shops with me and helping me find fabrics, he’s assembling his own stash! Another convert!! :)

  • February 17, 2009 at 12:51 pm

    You know your a quilter when…your married and college-age daughters say, “I need my own cubby” in mom’s sewing room and that “I’ll just shop here” meaning in my stash.

  • February 17, 2009 at 3:37 pm

    You know your a quilter when your quilting friends come to your house to match fabrics for quilts that their grandmothers made because they know you still have some of that fabric in your stash.

  • February 17, 2009 at 3:40 pm

    You know your a quilter when you offer to make a baby quilt for ANY new bride, whether you know her or not, knowing that someday she may need one.

  • February 17, 2009 at 6:08 pm

    You know you are a quilter when you design the plans to build a new home and your husband volunteers to cut the square footage down in the Master Bedroom instead of your quilting room.

  • February 17, 2009 at 6:31 pm

    You know your a quilter when…..Your husband has plans to go away for the weekend and you can’t wait for him to leave, so you can quilt tell your hearts content.

  • February 18, 2009 at 12:34 am

    You know you are a quilter when you go to sleep thinking about the quilt project you are working on and you wake up thinking about what your next project will be and what quiltng you want to accomplish today!

  • February 18, 2009 at 12:37 am

    You know you are a quilter when you go in the restroom at the community center or the hospital and get inspired by the tile floor.

  • February 18, 2009 at 5:45 pm

    You Know You Are A Quilter when every day is beautiful and exciting because you get to quilt.

    (submitted by Annie Unrein on behalf of Merilyn who couldn’t get the computer to take her comment!)

  • February 18, 2009 at 11:36 pm

    You know you are a quilter when you sit down to plan your calendar each year with birthdays and anniversaries and quilting events! “I’ve been Framed” looks like a lot of fun.

  • February 19, 2009 at 6:03 am

    You know you are a quilter when you find yourself daydreaming about quilting designs while your double chocolate sunday is melting beyond recognition!

    “Indian Summer” is a great pattern.

  • February 20, 2009 at 2:31 am

    We have a winner! I loved reading all the comments on the blog and hearing how you all know you are quilters. It was hard to pick just one as they were all excellent and I have to say I could relate to every single one of them. So, I used the random number generator at to pick a number and the number it picked was #12. So, Joy Bury, you are the winner of the free pattern of your choice at Congratulations!

    And thank you to everyone who read my guest blog and again to Michele for the great opportunity to connect with so many wonderful quilters.

    Happy stitching to all!


  • February 20, 2009 at 3:27 am

    Oh my goodness! I’m speechless! Thanks so much for a fun contest and thanks especially for the opportunity to pick out a free pattern! I’m off to go look at patterns!! Thank you!!

  • December 27, 2009 at 6:04 pm

    Thankyou for introducing Annie Unrein to us. What a talent! Even though I feel slightly intimidated by Annie’s achievements, she has given me some great ideas for new quilting projects.
    I’m sorry I missed your competition – hope you launch another one soon.

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