A Guest Post by Kay Mackenzie

Hello Darcy fans! I’m Kay Mackenzie, Darcy’s friend and fellow quilt designer. Today Darcy’s letting me do the honors as I talk about my new book from That Patchwork Place, Inspired by Tradition: 50 Appliqué Blocks in 5 Sizes.


Today is Day 2 of my 10-day ‘virtual book tour.’ If you missed the first stop, by all means go to my blog All About Appliqué and get caught up! Click on the category “Book-A-Round 2.’ You’ll learn something new about Inspired by Tradition at each stop of the tour and get to visit a bunch of fabulous quilting blogs to boot!

The book just came out and I’m so proud of it. There are 50 different vintagey block designs, instructions for back-basting hand appliqué and fusible machine appliqué, an Appliqué Questions and Answers section, and a Little Gallery of Ideas for inspiration. And, very cool, there’s a bonus CD that allows you to select your block and easily print it out at home in one of five sizes… plus in reverse.

What I’d like to do today is tell you a little bit about the back story of this book.


Easy Appliqué Blocks came out in 2009. That Patchwork Place did a beautiful job with this eclectic collection of designs, and I loved the whole experience of publishing with them so much that I immediately pitched a followup.

Publishing a book is a long haul. After my second proposal, it was quite awhile before I got the green light.

Cupcakes by Kay MackenzieOkay, so they didn’t know my birthday was coming up on the 17th, but I’ll take it anyway!
I just heard from Martingale & Company / That Patchwork Place that it’s a go for another book! Yippee!

I had been working on the designs all along, but now I had to kick it into high gear to get everything finished up by the submission deadline.

Believe it or not, this is gonna be a book.


My eyes have been rolling in different directions as I get everything together for an April 2 deadline. That’s the day that things are due for my second book with That Patchwork Place.

Here we have a manuscript, a photo list, an illustration list, author guidelines, my first book to refer back to, my upcoming schedule, suggestions for book design, cover design, and title, and a blurb. These are just some of the materials, not including, say, the blocks themselves.

Coordinating the manuscript, the photo list, and the illustration list seems like it would be easy, but what’s easy is getting off track when things are in three different places and tied together only by numbers. Heaven forbid you should change your mind and move a photo or an illustration to a different part of the manuscript, Then you have to renumber it and everything else that comes after it. Right now, some things are held in place on the lists with repositionable sticky tape, just in case!

After that, it’s another waiting game while the publishing team works their magic.

Yesterday afternoon, Brown came rumbling in and delivered the “first pages” of my upcoming book from That Patchwork Place.

whig rose3First pages are like galley proofs, where the author gets to see the book laid out for the first time (instead of the words being separate from the illustrations being separate from the photos). It’s quite an exciting and nervous time for an author. Just as before, the tyvek envelope and its super gumglue defeated me, and I called the DH for scissors. Finally into the package, I took out the contents and glimpsed the cover. O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!” It is sooooooo beautiful. White with colorful blocks and a lovely typeface for the title.

And that title is now official! I’m pleased to announce that Inspired by Tradition: 50 Appliqué Blocks in 5 Sizes is due out in March 2011!

I couldn’t be more pleased with the name. As you may know, in traditional publishing the author does not have decision power over the title and things like that. I’m so happy — this was one of my first choices.

Now I have to settle back to earth, find a good editing pen, and get to work.

Earlier this month, Inspired by Tradition finally shipped to quilt shops and I’m on Cloud 9. Ask for the book at your favorite quilt shop. It’s also available from Amazon, and you can order a signed copy from my website.

But hold on! Courtesy of the publisher, we have a copy to give away! Leave a comment on this post and have a chance to win a copy of Inspired by Tradition. The contest is open to the U.S. and Canada only. The winner will be drawn tomorrow, that’s March 24, in the evening Oklahoma time.

Thanks Darcy!


About Darcy

Author/Owner -- Ashton Publications
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61 Responses to A Guest Post by Kay Mackenzie

  1. Pingback: Book-A-Round 2 ~ Day 2 : All About Applique

  2. Leslie says:

    This book is wonderful! Please, please, please may I have a copy!?!
    I am a die-hard appliquer, just ask anyone….
    Thanks for the giveaway,
    Take care, Leslie

  3. Kay says:

    Thank you one and all for your wonderful words about my “baby.” And thanks again Darcy for hosting a stop on the tour!!

    Kay Mackenzie

  4. this looks great! I definitely could use some more applique techniques!

  5. Chris says:

    I would love to have this book and try some applique! thanks.

  6. Colleen says:

    The book looks lovely! thanks for the giveaway.

  7. Thanks for the chance! Congratulations on your book 🙂

  8. joan powell says:

    Love your books. Count me in on the drawing. I made one of your cat blocks for a cancer donation quilt. Really like applique. Thank you.

  9. Ray says:

    So interesting to hear about how much work it is to write a book. I can’t wait to get my copy – hope I win one this week!!!

  10. Carla says:

    Looks like an awesome book! I’d love to try applique! 🙂

  11. Jen says:

    I hope I’m in time! I love the back story of this book. I was excited when I saw this book in the Martingale catalogue! I said “There’s Kay’s book!” I love that you included a CD with the different sizes. Congrats! And thanks for all your hard work!

  12. Kim says:

    Oh my goodness so much work to bring us those beautiful patterns and teach a new way to applique! I can’t wait to see it!

    thanks so much for a chance to win!

    Happy sewing

  13. Linda Erickson says:

    this looks like a really great book, and you should be very proud!! I’d love to win a copy.

  14. Kalli Inman says:

    I just plain love applique!!

  15. Patti O. says:

    What a great reference book to have on one’s bookshelf—and with an accompanying CD. What more can an applique lover want? Good job!

  16. Deb says:

    How very exciting to have a book published!! It certainly looks like a good one, and i’d love to win a copy!

  17. maryc says:

    What a fascinating look at the journey from creative mind to actual book. It looks like a must have book.

  18. Kelly says:

    I had no idea author’s didn’t get to choose the title’s. Amazing.

  19. Jocelyn says:

    This book looks fabulous! What an incredible applique book. Thanks for sharing a copy.

  20. Lorena Messenger says:

    Wow, didn’t have any idea you as the author don’t have control over the title. Seems strange, but glad to hear the title is one you really was hoping for. I really like the idea of the CD, that sounds like a great addition to any book that relates to sewing with patterns. Technology is great and I am grateful you are putting the two together. Our projects will be the better for it since patterns should come out better.

  21. Lynn D says:

    I love applique and love to try new methods. I’m hoping I’m going to be the lucky winner.

  22. Robin Gold says:

    Thank you, Darcy and Kay! Great to hear the “backstory”! And I can’t wait to get the book — I already have plans for some of the block designs!!

  23. Mary B says:

    Received you book Friday. Love it and love have the CD for the patterns and being able to choose the size you want. If I win I’ll gift it to a friend who is learning to applique.

  24. Angie Nudge says:

    Gosh, it takes almost a year to get a book published, and a lot of work. I’m all admiration for you getting this out to us.

  25. Sandy A says:

    I have tried several methods for applique and would love to learn how to do the back basting way. Please count me in on your give away! Thanks!

  26. julie love says:

    I’m sure this book is great resource for those of us “addicted to applique”. I plan to do a book review for our local applique society on this book! Thanks so much for the chance to win a copy!

  27. Marcia W. says:

    I want to learn applique and what better way to start than with the expert advice in this book. Thanks for the opportunity.

  28. Dori M says:

    What a wonderful book for my love of applique – thank you!

  29. Darlene says:

    This book looks like it has something for everyone.

  30. Amanda says:

    I love applique and this book would be a great tool for my library! Thanks for the opportunity to win!

  31. CathyC in Alberta says:

    Publishing a book looks like alotta work. Thank you for sharing the process. Like Eileen says: educating us on how to create wonderful blocks and then turn them into one of a kind quilts. To win the book would be spectacular!

  32. Leslie says:

    It must be so exciting to see the book “in your head” finally in your hands and on store shelves.

  33. Barb Colvin says:

    I love your Easy Applique Blocks and can’t wait to get Inspired by Tradition!

  34. VickiT says:

    I’m just learning applique so I am sure this is another book that would be a wealth of information for me to read. Thanks for the chance to win my own copy.

  35. Sallie says:

    Thanks for the chance at this great giveaway!

  36. Jane Freman says:

    I always choose projects that are too complicated and never quite finish them.
    This wonderful book of patterns gives the choice of how many applique blocks you would like to use and therefore will be great for all those future applique quilts.

  37. Patricia Emery says:

    I’m just starting to get into applique, but I’m really enjoying the hand work! This book looks AWESOME!!!

  38. Amy Flick says:

    It looks like a wonderful resource and if Darcy likes it, it must be terrific.

  39. Janis T says:

    I can’t wait to get my hands on this book! It looks absolutely wonderful and the cd is a fantastic idea! Thanks for the giveaway and the tour!

  40. BarbR says:

    I have the Easy Applique Blocks with the CD and use it frequently. I use the smallest possible for postcards. What fun to find more. =!=

  41. Lori Ginsberg says:

    Kay, I really feel like I am getting to know you. I loved reading the journey of “Inspired by Tradition”. Your designs are just my style. Discovering “my style” has been a journey in itself. Thank you for your wonderful books. They have been inspirational to me.

  42. Eileen Keane says:

    Hi Kay,
    I have been in love with applique for years. I think this book is a great way to approach it-you supply the block patterns but we create our own original quilts!

  43. Lisa England says:

    It was interesting to learn a bit about the process of publishing a quilt book. This one looks beautiful! Thanks for the chance to win.

  44. Deb G. in VA says:

    I would love to have copy of your 2nd book!

  45. SherriD says:

    I cannot imagine doing a book. I do a block of the month for our quilt guild and that is hard enough!!! Doing a whole book is beyond comprehension!!! lol

  46. Kathy Kline says:

    Love applique, your book looks great and the idea of a CD is super!

  47. Tammmie Bivins says:

    Wow, I love what your doing with this blog hopping and finding out all this interesting informtion! I love it! I love the book too ! I would love to win a copy!!! Please pick me!!

  48. Alberta in N GA says:

    loved the little bit you put in about how the book is made.

  49. loralynnann says:

    Love the CD included! Great book!

  50. Loralynn says:

    The CD is definately an inspired idea! I’m fairly new to applique and that would be invaluable to me!

  51. jacquie says:

    I have not learned applique yet, but it is on my list of MUST do things!
    This looks great..I love blocks of different sizes in the same quilt!

  52. Michelle M says:

    I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy of this book. I love applique!

  53. Eden Hunt says:

    I would love to add this book to my library (my plan for immortality is to have planned WAY more projects than are possible to finish in one lifetime!). I like the idea of the CD to make pattern printing a breeze in whatever size suits your need. Great book, congratulations!

  54. Robin says:

    I’d love to win a copy of this book – thanks for the chance! 🙂

  55. Georjana Mauldin says:

    Got my copy of your new book yesterday in the mail – preordered from Amazon – beautiful!! Can’t wait to start stitching!!

  56. Melody Muzyk says:

    Lots of beautiful new blocks-I’ll be first in line when this goes on the shelves.

  57. Akiko says:

    Applique book with CD??? How cool is that!!
    I LOVE hand applique but sometime size doesn’t come what I need.
    But 5sizes cover alot!!! And I can reverse, too??? WOW.
    I can’t wait to see the book!!!

  58. Donna Pheneger says:

    I enjoyed read about your new book came to be – thanks for sharing that with us. I also think applique cd’s are a terrific idea. Thank you again for the give-away!

  59. DebrafromMD says:

    I love the idea of the designs on cd. I wish more applique books would do this.

  60. kathy h says:

    This book looks great, especially with the cd to print out the patterns and in different sizes. Interesting to learn about all the prep work that goes into making a book. thanks for the chance to win a copy.

  61. Mary Kastner says:

    It looks like a lot of work to get to this finished book project that looks so awesome. I really like a lot of your designs. Thank you for the opportunity to win a copy.

    Best Wishes,

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