Free quilt pattern: Modern Squares

June 25, 2019

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“I smile because you are my sister; I laugh because you can’t do anything about it.”

Imagine what feisty fun two impish sisters who grew up in fast-paced New York can have opening a quilting studio together in Austin Texas—the self-proclaimed city of “Keep it Weird!” Sisters Susan Rubino and Chris Wenz, opened APQS Austin/Over The Top Quilting Studio in 2015, but have been quilting over 40 years! Even after that long, sibling rivalry is not allowed because their 98-year-old mom, Thelma Macaluso, serves as their creative inspiration (and chief binder and “frogger”—removing any errant or unwanted stitching!)

Since Austin is also known as a hot bed for The Modern Quilt Guild, the sisters decided to create a quilt from that genre. Their design, “Modern Squares”, leaves ample white space for quilting but also tells a subtle story. As sisters, Chris and Susan are closely interlocked. Depending on the day, one sister is dominant and the other slightly recedes. But they are always together acting as a single unit. While this quilt’s story is all about sisterhood, it could easily make a fast wedding gift represent a young couple joining in marriage!

Though it might look complicated with two squares that appear to float on the background, this modern quilt is easy and fast to put together. The pattern includes simple cutting instructions and describes how to assemble individual units that quickly come together to form the overlapping squares.

Susan and Chris chose to quilt the top using the APQS Quilt Path with an overall pattern called “Hickory Dickory” from Anne Bright Designs and peach-colored thread. Its circles and squares provide just enough contrast to make the quilt special.

Over The Top Quilting Studio is a full service longarm quilting studio that sells APQS longarm machines and provides full machine service and repair. APQS Millie 30, Millie, Lucey,  Lenni and George are all available to visit with at any time. Their retail area stocks over 100 bolts of wide backings, and they also carry a selection of high quality fabrics for binding quilts.  Our motto is ‘From Buying the Fabric to Binding your Quilt, you can do it all yourself at our Studio’. And if you’d like them to finish your quilt for you, they offer that service too.

Their longarm rental program is a very popular and easy way to finish quilts. A Rental Certification class teaches you all you need to know to use the machines to finish your quilts yourself.  Quilters are voracious learners! The studio offers classes to meet a wide range of needs, including Fabric Dyeing, Beginning Quilting, Longarm Ruler work, Improvisational Quilt Design, Kids’ Quilting camps, even crochet and hand embroidery! Check out their schedule at

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