I am very happy to announce that the 2nd edition of Simply Amazing Spiral Quilts is now available.  You can order it one of three ways:

Through my online store at www.ranaemerrillquilts.com
Directly from CreateSpace at https://www.createspace.com/5293179  (If you are ordering just books, or shipping to an address outside the USA, this is the best place to order.)
From Amazon.com

If you already own the 1st edition, and would like to receive the most important updates to the 2nd edition, please click here and the SASQ 2nd Edition Supplement (a PDF document) will be sent to you by email.

SASQ will soon be available in an eBook edition as well.  These editions have been updated, corrected and improved based on what I have learned from teaching my spiral quilting techniques since the book first came out in 2008.

In the second edition, instead of putting the templates and patterns on a CD, they are now stored in an online library.  This allowed me to include many additional templates that would not fit on the disc.  The address and password for the online library are included in the book.


About the first edition:

Okay, here’s the deal.  I tried to say this all nicely before (see the version below) but I got tired of getting mean-spirited emails from people who had nothing better to do than complain about errors in the book and blame me for them.

The second printing of SASQ  (1st edition) happened in Summer 2009 and the important corrections were made then.  How to tell if you have the second printing?  Look at the bottom right corner of page 97 — if it says that the instructions are continued on the next page, you have a corrected copy from the second (or later) printing.  The first edition went out of print at the end of 2013.

All of these corrections (as well as significant updates) have been made in the 2nd Edition.  If you already own the 1st edition and would like to receive the updates to the second edition, please click here and the SASQ 2nd Edition Supplement will be sent to you by email.

Here’s what happened: The publisher was selling the company and moving their offices when they were working on my book.  They changed editors on me multiple times.  I gave them a fully-corrected author’s proof, but the editing slipped through the cracks and it got published with mistakes. Too many of them.  I was LIVID and insisted that the publisher correct the book AND publish an errata list.  I even went through the book a second time and re-edited it for them myself. The publisher did make corrections on the second printing but refused to publish an errata list.  So, against their objections, I published my own, here, because it was more important to me that my readers have the right information than that I save the face of a publisher who dropped the ball. I did this, even knowing that some people would see me as the one responsible for the errors when I was not.

The errors in the book were not my fault, and I have done everything humanly possible to make sure that my readers get an accurate, completely edited book.  So please, if you have a copy of the book that was part of that first printing and are unhappy about it, don’t write me emails complaining about it. I have already done everything I can do.

And, instead of posting nasty reviews on other websites about what a crappy book you think this is (and thousands of people will tell you what an absolutely FABULOUS book it is), post a review that says “RaNae cares so much about her readers that she put her reputation on the line and went the extra mile to make sure her readers have all the correct information.”

In any event, it’s a book, not a matter of life and death.  Let’s keep things in perspective.  Go spend the time quilting.

P.S.: My second book Magnificent Spiral Mandala Quilts does not have a single error that I or anyone else has been able to find since it came out.  THAT is how I write books.



Here’s the nice version:

Spiros, every book gets published with errors.  And, the publishers usually don’t say anything about it because they don’t want to look bad.  Hopefully the errors get corrected in subsequent printings, but sometimes even that doesn’t happen. (I have in my possession a book  by a very famous quilting teacher which, even though it has over 90,000 copies in print, still contains dozens of errors that have not been corrected since the first printing.)

Even after careful review and editing, errors slipped into the first printing of Simply Amazing Spiral Quilts, but it was important to me to let you know about them, so here’s a list. (In the publisher’s defense, they moved their offices and lost three editors during the time this book was being written, and it’s still 99.9% accurate, so let’s keep things in perspective!)  You can still use the book quite easily and successfully even without the corrections listed here.

I have organized this list into three sections: Important Information, Clarifications & Improvements, and Nice to Know But Doesn’t Change The World.  The most important of these were corrected in the second printing, which happened in the summer of 2009.  The first edition is now out of print.

Changes are shown in bold face type.  Small typographical or style errors are not included, except where they might have an impact on whether or not you understand the instructions.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.  Happy quilting!

Important Information

Page 27, Step 5: The photo for this step should have had numbers at the corners of the shape, like this:

SASQ Page 27, Step 5

SASQ Page 27, Step 5

Page 27, Step 6: Like the one above, the photo for this step should have had numbers at the corners of the shapes, like this:

SASQ Page 27, Step 6

SASQ Page 27, Step 6

Page 48: Here are improved diagrams for bottom row:

SASQ Page 48, Dissimilar Spirals

SASQ Page 48, Dissimilar Spirals

SASQ Page 48, Planning Connections for Dissimilar Spirals

SASQ Page 48, Planning Connections for Dissimilar Spirals

Page 73, Group 6:  The bottom pair of fabrics should change places with the top right pair.  The text below then reads: “In the top pairs, separation occurs because dominant colors are the same but have different values, and the secondary colors are different.  In the bottom pair, the dominant color is identical, but the red is a strong secondary color that changes the value.”

Page 73, Group 7:  On the bottom row of fabrics, the green should be in the center and the black on the left.  The first sentence of the caption should read “Though different colors and different values separate these fabrics, the entire group is held together by pink as a secondary color.”

Page 73, Group 8:  The last sentence of the caption should read “Third, the top right pair is an inversion: the dominant color of one is a secondary color of the other.”

Page 97: Below are new and improved photos for Step 4.  This is because if you do a Next-Step Trim as shown on Page 93, the edges of the fabric line up exactly for a perfect 1/4″ seam allowance (or 1/8″, if you use the Add-an-Eighth tool).  Wouldn’t you know, I didn’t figure this out until the day after the shoot ended. Just goes to show, it’s an ongoing learning process for all of us, Spiros!  Here’s the beauty of blogging: I re-shot the photos at home with my little digital camera, and here they are:

The photo on the left shows a completed ring of triangles, after the next-step trim has been done. (See page 93 of the book for how to do a next-step trim.  I’m in LOVE with my Add-a-Quarter tool!)  The photo on the right shows a piece of fabric being positioned for the next ring of triangles, and you can see that the edge of the new fabric aligns perfectly with the trimmed edge of the previous ring.  Also, the fabric is a rectangular strip, not a triangle (easier to work with!).

Page 101, Problem: My spoke has jagged edges, Reason #3:  This should read “If you’re sewing a Pinwheel spiral, and there’s a jagged edge only on the last point, you are forgetting to leave open the partial seam of the first triangles.

Page 110, Cutting Chart for Spiraling Roses on My Table:  The instructions for cutting “Light Blue”, “Lights”, “Mediums” and “Darks” should say to cut rectangular strips [not triangles] from templates.  Use the Strip Method of cutting on page 89 for these pieces.

Page 112, Exploding Spiral, Supplies & Tools:
The first item — White paper — should be 25 sheets 8-1/2″ x 11″ or 1 square 40″ x 40″. 
Under “Tips For Success”, the next-to-last line should read “it may be necessary to fussy-cut small pieces….”

Page 113, Exploding Spiral, Step 1:  Last sentence should read: Trace the center markings, including the gray dashed line, to the 8-1/2″ x 11″ foundation material.

Page 114, Exploding Spiral, Step 6:  The third sentence should read: The strip should extend at least 2-1/2″ beyond the right raw edge of the top.

Page 117, The Court Jester, Cutting Chart:  To Color #5, add the following notation: (Photo shows two different shades because center 9-patch is vintage.)  Color #6 is Grey.

Page 119, The Court Jester, Step 7, 2nd paragraph:  The second paragraph should begin: Cut 3-wide strips crosswise into 1-1/2″ units.  3-wide refers to the combined strips that are three strips wide.  The width (though it is not relevant here) is 3-1/2“.

Page 119, The Court Jester, Step 7, 5th paragraph:  The measurements in figure G should be aligned like this:

SASQ Page 119, Border Trimming

Page 120, Zowie! Powie!:  The correct size is 48″ x 48″, not 41-1/2″ x 41-1/2″ and not 55″ x 55″.

Page 122, Zowie! Powie!, Step 5:  After “Reattach the corners to their corresponding spirals, matching block numbers and registration marks” add this sentence: Follow the Assembly diagram at right to put window and solid corners in the correct position on each block.

Page 125, Synergy, Cutting Chart, Color #4:  Color #4 in the Cutting Chart should be referred to in the first column as “Darkest spokes and sashing between spirals” so as not to confuse it with the background fabric which is Color #1.

Page 125, Synergy, Cutting Chart, Color #5:  Okay, Spiros, this one is a biggy, so listen up:  Under Color #5 in the far right column, under “As shown”, there is this notation: “(Sew 2″ x 3″ strips together end-to-end)”.  This was supposed to read: “Sew 2 groups of 3 strips together end-to-end.”  Ditto for the next note, a couple of lines down, which says “(Sew 2″ x 2″ strips together end-to-end)”.  This was supposed to read: “Sew 2 groups of 2 strips together end-to-end.

Page 125, Synergy, Cutting Chart, Backing and hanging sleeve:  No, you do not need 53 yards of fabric!  You need 3 yards.

Page 126, Synergy, Step 2:  Add the bolded words to the last sentence:  “Sew these rectangular pieces into place on the spiral foundation, then trim to the triangle shape in the Next Step Trim after sewing.”

Page 126, Synergy, Step 4:  Add the bolded words to the second sentence: “Use a touch of fabric glue to hold the A pieces in position on the foundation.”

Page 127, Synergy, Step 10:  In the middle of the paragraph, after “Trim ends even with top and bottom” add this sentence: “Turn border strips face up into finished position.”

Page 127, Synergy:  The caption under Star Variation should read: “Alternate version using star applique.  Add photos in the centers of the spirals.”

Page 143, Fruit Salad Spinner:  Missing caption should read: A Change of Direction: Compare this quilt with The Court Jester on page 116.  It has the same layout, but all the spirals spin in the same direction, instead of in mirrored pairs. 

Page 146-147, Yardage Calculation Chart:  I have edited this three times, and it seems that for every correction that gets made, another error creeps in.  So, to get the most accurate, up-to-date version of the Yardage Calculation Chart, click on the link below.  When you’re done viewing / printing it, click on the “BACK” button at the top left side of the browser’s window to bring you back to this page.

SASQ Yardage Calculation Chart

CD: 6-sided Spiral templates in EQ files:  If you look in the block listing, there are two files named “6-sided Pinwheel Spiral” and there is no file named “6-sided Nesting Spiral.”  The first of the two is actually the 6-sided Nesting Spiral and the second is the Pinwheel Spiral.  To change the name, select the block, then click on the Notecard button.  Type in the correct name and close.  You won’t be able to save the file on the disc, but you can save it to your computer, and when you do the name will stay changed.  If you just upload the block to your Block Library on your computer, you can also change the name when you do that.

CD: 6-sided and 8-sided Baravelle Spiral templates:  Spiros, some of these templates ended up being a different type of spiral than they were supposed to be.  My apologies — this is what happens when you’ve looked at a project so many times you’re just not seeing it any more!  The corrected files are listed below, in PDF form just like on the disc.  All you have to do it click on the link to open the file, then download it to your computer.  You can save the corrected files on a CD and keep it with your book, if you wish.  If you’re a “glass half full” kind of person, look at it this way — you got some extra templates!

6-sided Baravelle Spiral, 6″ sides

6-sided Baravelle Spiral, 8″ sides

8-sided Baravelle Spiral, 8″ block

8-sided Baravelle Spiral, 10″ block

8-sided Baravelle Spiral, 12″ block

Clarifications & Improvements
(Better ways of explaining things that occurred to me after the book went to press. )

Page 25, Step 3:  If the shape has an uneven number of sides, connecting every other corner will actually loop you twice around the shape before you arrive back at the starting point.  You will have hit every corner as you go around.

Page 52: Heading to page should read only “Centers“.  Captions for “Detail, Holiday Whirl” and “Detail, Splish Splash Spirals” are reversed.

Page 61:  EQ users, try this with Custom Layouts in the Layout Library.  Also try Electric Quilt 6’s Block-Turned Quilt tool.

Page 67: Caption entitled “Two Possibilities for Spiral Borders” should begin “In the examples below, the top one is made . . . ”

Page 69: In the yellow box entitled “Some Tricks for Seeing Value” the second bullet point should read “View the fabrics through a ruby beholder (a piece of transparent red plastic).  This reduces colors to value only.”

Page 69:  The next-to-last sentence of main text on page should read “Place fabrics with low contrast in areas you want to blend and hold together.”

Page 70:  Heading should read “Pattern“.  Second sentence of last paragraph should read “Even though different fabrics may have the same dominant and secondary colors . . . .”

Page 71:  Heading should read “Placing Color, Value and Pattern in a Spiral

Page 76, Inversion Gradation: The fourth fabric in the row is the “pivot” fabric — with equal proportions of both dominant and secondary colors.

Page 76, Color-to-Color Gradation: Envision the letters A, B, C, D, & E on the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th & 6th swatches respectively.  Then the caption would read “Use patterns to shift from one color to a completely different color.  Increase the amount of the first secondary color (A), introduce a new secondary color (B), remove the first secondary color (C), then shift the dominant color (D, E).”

Page 77, Flow Gradation: Add to the caption this sentence: “Flow gradations can occur in trunks, point and fans.”

Page 78:  The heading for this page should read “Directional Fabrics” and there should be a subheading over the first paragraph that reads “Stripes & Geometric Patterns“.  In the diagrams down the right hand side of the page, next to “Perpendicular Base” add “(See Spiral of Life, page 131)“.   Next to “Aligned to Increment Side of Triangle” add “(See Holiday Whirl, page 24)”.

Page 82:  Under “Translucent foundation materials” add “(See Foundation Choices, page 86).”

Page 83, Ink Runs When Wet: The first sentence should read: “Use a dry iron, or dry press with a wooden presser or a seam roller.”

Page 83, Toner Flakes or Melts: The first sentence should read: “Use a wooden presser or a seam roller to cold press.

Page 83, Foundation Materials: Clarification of second sentence: “Traditional methods of paper piecing involve drawing the design on opaque paper, then turning the paper over so the drawing is on the back, while the fabric is sewn to the blank side.  This presents two problems: (1) you can’t see what you’re doing from the front; and (2) the design on the front is the mirror image of the design on the back, so you have to work in reverse.”

Page 83, Caption to Photograph: The name of the first product is Simple Foundations Translucent Vellum Paper and it is available from C&T Publishing.  EQ Printables Foundation sheets are available from Electric Quilt.

Page 85, Step 4:  Add this sentence at the end: “Be sure to mark which side is the front.

Page 91, 1st paragraph: After “(see How NOT to Pin, below)” add “and also Pinning, page 103.”

Page 85, Step 4:  Add this sentence at the end: “Be sure to mark which side is the front.

Page 93, Next Step Trim (Pink box):  After “you’ll be able to simply align it along this trimmed edge” add “for an accurate seam allowance.”  Also, here are improved diagrams, showing the highlighted seam line all the way around the shape:

SASQ Page 93, Next Step Trim 1

SASQ Page 93, Next Step Trim 1


The caption that accompanies this second diagram should read:
Working one side at a time, fold the foundation back on the highlighted seam line for the next ring (yellow line).  Using the Add-a-Quarter tool, trim the fabric to 1/4″ beyond the fold.”

SASQ Page 93, Next Step Trim 2

SASQ Page 93, Next Step Trim 2


SASQ Page 93, Next Step Trim 3

SASQ Page 93, Next Step Trim 3

Page 96: Step 1 includes the instruction “Set the center (step 1, page 94).”  This really is the first step all by itself, separate from the rest of the instructions in this step, and if you give it its own number, as it should have, then all the other numbers on the next couple of pages correspond with the steps in the previous instructions on Page 94.

Page 98, Method 1, Step A: Add to end of caption “(red line in diagram above).”

Page 98, Method 1, Step C: After first sentence, add “(Red stitching in photograph above).”

Page 103, “Y” Seams:  Replace the sentence “Don’t let “Y” seams scare you” with “But foundations don’t stretch”.

Page 105, Binding: I won’t go into the whole story, but suffice it to say that after the book was all written and turned in, the editor insisted that I write instructions for binding and include drawings to illustrate the steps.  I took two days out of my vacation to do it.  And then the illustrations didn’t make it into the book.  SO . . . click the link below to bring up a PDF page of instructions — with the illustrations.  When you’re done viewing / printing it, click on the “BACK” button at the top left side of the browser’s window to bring you back to this page.

Binding a Quilt

Page 111, Spiraling Roses on My Table, Step 3Aligning and attaching the ivory triangles to the green leaves will be much easier if, on the back of the ivory fabric pieces, you trace the seam line around the paper template.

Page 148-151, 154, 155 Template Library, Triangles & Squares: The sides of the triangles and squares are 4″ long, to make it easy for you to calculate enlargement.

Page 148-151, Template Library, Five- and Six-Sided Shapes: The sides of the pentagons and hexagons are 2″ long, to make it easy for you to calculate enlargement.

Page 148-156, Template Library, Twelve-Sided Spiral: The sides of the twelve-sided shape are 1″ long, to make it easy for you to calculate enlargement.

Nice to Know but Doesn’t Change the World

Acknowledgments:  Lila is Lela and Trevor is Treva.

Page 15 & 57 (and several other instances throughout the book):  The name of Evelyn Larrison’s quilt is Goodness, Gracious, Great Ball of Fire!

Page 19: Crop Circles: How’d They Do That? is on page 137.

Page 32, Quilts With Double Spirals in This Book: The list should include Enjoy the Journey, page 132.

Page 32, Quilts With Interrupted Spokes in This Book:  The list should include Bev, Barb & A Bottle of Wine, page 142.

Page 58:  Yellow box title should read “Other Quilts With Appliqued Spirals