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  • Love Letters and Other Sweet Things

    To all the sweethearts out there, Valentine’s Day is coming in a couple of weeks and what better way to express your affection than with a lovely fabric Valentine that hold concealed pockets to tuck notes, flowers or chocolates into. This will be the project for my upcoming Art Journal Quilt classes at two locations – Pioneer Quilts and Montavilla Sewing Center in Gresham. The class will be at Pioneer Quilts on Friday February 2nd and at Montavilla Wednesday February 7th.

    The mini-quilts are decorated with hearts cut from pretty fabrics – some are simply fused on but others are clandestine pockets that you can tuck little treasures into. Those of you who enjoy embellishing will find plenty of options to apply decorative braid, lace, beads, buttons, sequins and/or decorative embroidery or stitching. As this project goes together very quickly, there will be plenty of time to complete your Valentine before Valentine’s Day.

    Now for a word on what we consider ‘romantic’ design and color. Growing up and participating in Valentine’s card exchanges at school, the cards were pretty much red, pink and white. Walk into the card section of a store as I did yesterday and you will see a vast ocean of those very same colors but what do YOU think of as romantic? You will see in my two photos that one of my quilts was created in a sort of Victorian style with salmon colored brocade, black velvet and floral prints with black lace and pearls while the other is a Renaissance Fantasy of a vibrant silk brocade, gold silk, exotic embroidered braid with beads and a little golden key (to someone’s heart). The beads on either side of the bottom beaded fringe are the result of one of my last last Journal Quilt classes I had at one shop where we made embellished fabric beads.

    I do hope you will consider joining me at one of these two sessions to make your very own Valentine for a sweetheart or just for yourself, after all – you deserve a little love too. Contact the shops for more information or to enroll.

    Victorian Romance
    From Romeo to Juliet

  • By Popular Demand – My Color Theory Class!

    Hello dear students and fans,

    One of the popular classes I have taught over the years is a class on Color Theory. I started teaching this class in response to several situations I encounter on a fairly regular basis. One is the scenario where a student might tell me they don’t feel confident about assembling their own color schemes for their projects; they are fine when recreating a palette identical to that in a pattern or book but feel overwhelmed if they walk into a quilt shop to pick their own composition. The other common scenario is when someone tells me they ARE color confident – they know what they like and picked colors they loved when they spread them out to work with but upon completion of their quilt, they didn’t like it and are not sure what went wrong.

    Yet another more abstract concept is that we tend to confuse pattern with color, we are quick to dismiss a promising pattern simply because we don’t like the color we see a sample made from not realizing that we might love it if it were in a different color scheme – I am guilty of this myself.

    If any of these sound familiar to you then you might consider taking my color class. It is a very thorough exploration of color using a series of cut and paste exercises on how color behaves, how to use color to emphasize pattern and design and  what common mistakes are made in working with color. Color is basically a science and you can learn the skills of working with it even if you do not have an intuitive color sense.  In addition, you will learn how to pick great color compositions by using a color wheel along with some other ‘innovative’ approaches that will allow you to pick unique color combinations that yield stunning results in your quilts.

    Fabric is far too expensive these days to risk investing that kind of outlay (both financial and the time spent) only to be disappointed in the finished quilt. My class is scheduled for this coming Thursday, January 25th, at A Common Thread; contact the shop to register for the class. If you can’t make this class, it will be repeated again in the Spring.

    Meanwhile, for your enjoyment, check out these two quilts in progress made by a couple of students in my Maplewood class at A Common Thread last week. These are both the same color scheme pulled from a formula on a color wheel – and a rather challenging one to make look sophisticated (usually). Both are stunning and though based on the same formula, each is uniquely different from the other.

    Two student quilts from my Maplewood pattern made in a Triadic color scheme.

  • ALERT! Error on My New Maplewood Pattern

    I recently self-published my Garden Windows pattern Maplewood and yesterday found an error in the measurement of two pieces on the cutting legend.

    I have only sold limited quantities to several specific shops and have recalled all the ones remaining in their inventory  to add the revised page but they did sell some patterns before I caught the error. I have a corrected page for any of you who purchased the pattern that you can download by clicking here.