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  • 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.

  • Starting Something New for the New Year

    Last year I started to teach classes at Montavilla Sewing Center in Gresham. It’s a nice location for me from the standpoint of proximity to where I live but also to fill a blank spot on my teaching map and open up an area where I was previously unrepresented. As of January, I am starting my Journal Quilt classes there. These are ongoing monthly standalone classes that focus on artistic techniques the in many cases go beyond the methods you might usually find in a more traditional quilting class.

    In The Art Journal Quilt classes we explore techniques such as embellishment, fabric manipulation, fabric dyeing and painting and in some cases, the lesson might involve a different creative approach to design. The projects are small – usually the size of a sheet of paper. Why the small size? This is so you can explore the technique on an experimental project before committing to a larger, more expensive and more time consuming quilt and work out the logistics plus see if it’s something you really want to pursue on a larger scale. As a bonus, many of the students actually complete the project and we all know how satisfying it is to check those UFOs off your list.

    Shell Dreams #1. A woven textures panel embellished with seashells and pebbles and textured quilting

    In our January class we will play with weaving curvy strips of different fabrics into panels that can be a standalone composition or used as a background for embellishment as I have done with my sample Shell Dreams, or an applique focal point as a couple of my students did in a previous class.


    The fabrics do not need to be 100% cotton and in fact, you can get interesting texture variations by combining different fabrics such as silk or satin with rough fabrics like corduroy and linen.

    These 3 hour classes at Montavilla Sewing Center in Gresham will take place the first Wednesday of each month from 10:30 am to 1:30 pm. Come join me to explore just what you can do with fabric and your sewing machine.

    Ardie’s Tribal Mask Applique on a woven textures background
    Joy’s Tribal Mask Applique over woven textures background