Creating Color Harmony

Creating Color Harmony

Creating color harmony is the act of putting multiple colors together to create a palette of harmony. Using different colors in different ways can greatly affect the character of your quilting projects. When I am working on a new quilt project or designing a new pattern these are the the steps I take in choosing my fabrics. I will be demonstrating these steps using my quilt pattern Concerto.

Step #1: Perception & Feelings

Consider how you want the quilt to be perceived. Perhaps you’re making a quilt for a new baby girl and you want it to invoke feelings such as fresh, new, and sophisticated. You can achieve this perception through your quilt by using colors properly.


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Tutorial: Reversible drawstring bags

Tutorial: Reversible drawstring bags

Welcome Megan Dye of Meg's Monkey Beans to The Swatch & Sttitch! Today she's sharing her cute drawstring bags, a wonderful and eco-friendly way to wrap up your gifts this holiday season.


• Fabric for bag and lining (I used Retro Christmas by Cynthia Frenette and Kona Cottons)
• One 1.5” strip of fabric for casing (double the width of your bag minus two inches)
• Cording/drawstring (double the width of your bag plus a few inches)
• Two small pieces of fusible hem tape (optional)
• One spring cord lock
• Sewing machine, thread, pins, rotary cutter, and mat

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All About Vanessa of V&Co.

Do you know Vanessa? She's a super crafty mom of four and I want to be her when I grow up. She probably thinks I'm crazy for saying that but in all honesty V rocks and her blog is always inspiring. Read on to learn a bit more about her and have the chance to win one of her patterns.


1. V, I just love this banner pattern! How in the world did you get this idea?

you know, i kept seeing banners everywhere, and i kept thinking to myself, wouldn't that be a cute quilt pattern? and well it took me 7 months after i thought that thought, to actually get it done in real life, but i think it was worth making it no matter how long it took me to make it a reality!


2. You often mix simple appliqué with a pieced quilt for a flawless design. Did you always mix the two?... or how did you get started on combining them?  

i love that you can create anything you want with applique, so yes in the future you will continue to see me do the two together. i personally love simple designs,so you will see in my quilts either one very pronounced applique (like my just dandy quilt) or you will see it in repetition like my banner quilt and in a couple more quilts soon to debut in a magazine. new applique quilts pop up in my brain on a daily basis, so keep a look out for more of that in the future...if only i could make my hands work as quickly as my head...i'd have a whole mess of quilts happening daily!


3. You use a lot of texture in your projects. Do you have a lot of trial and error to get things to look how you want or do you just go for it?

absolutely on trial and error!!! BUT, sometimes the mistake is even better than the original thought. love that.


4. All of your projects show your great sense of color. What color or colors do you think are going to be big in 2011?

 ha! well last year i was lucky and was right when i told you about gray becoming the new it color, so this year, if i'm right again, i would say more neutrals like biege and creams and whites and some stone colors. but don't rule out gray i think it's just started to make the scene,  so watch for more designers making that as part of their palate. but then again...what do i know? :)


5. If you ruled the world for 24 hours and everyone had to do what you wanted... what would that day look like?

holy hannah, what kind of fabric quilting question is that? okay well i'll answer it two ways. my miss universe answer would be: i would make everyone work to help each other out, weather it be call the elder neighbor and tell him you are bringing dinner, or make a blanket for the flood relief...for 24 hours you would have no choice but to do good and help others without wanting recognition, a reward, or some kind of payback. 

and my completely selfish no judgment given answer would be: that everyone would give me whatever the heck i wanted.  back massages? granted!  a bazillion dollars in my acct? done! not having to wipe little kids butts? absolutely! kids not give me lip about having to do homework? YES PLEASE!  i think after a while that would get old real quick...but for 24 hours? yeah i think i could deal with that.


I fell in love with Vanessa's Banner Quilt as soon as she posted it! I decided to go bright and girly with my fabric choices. It's Remix mixed with Quilter's Linen. I've been working on this quilt for a while. I did the applique on the flights to and from LA and it was a great project to do on the go. Vanessa's PDF pattern has 14 pages and goes into every step with photos.


It's snowed here again last night and it's super cold and crazy windy. Getting a good photo of the quilt this morning wasn't easy... but I guess the flags just want to be flying in the wind!

I decided not to do a pieced border since my prints were so bright and bold. Instead I opted to do a flange and a brighter pink border. The flange is put on between the 2 borders using the same method as my binding flange tutorial.


Stash Stack Quilt {tutorial}


This is a Stash Stack. Stash Stacks are bundles of 12 coordinated Fat Quarters. They are great to work with because the coordination of colors has been done for you!


Have you ever needed to make a quilt on short notice? If so this is the tutorial for you! Grab a Stash Stack and a solid and you'll have a quilt in no time! 


In order to make the quilt super soft I chose to use cuddle by Shannon Fabrics as the backing for this quilt.  It really makes you want to grab the quilt and cuddle with someone underneath it.


Download the full tutorial here.

{ Julie Herman blogs at Jaybird Quilts }

Get to Know: Darlene Zimmerman & Clothesline Club


1. Tell me a bit about you: name, location, affiliations, personal stuff. 

My name is Darlene Zimmerman, and I'm from a very small rural community in southwest Minnesota. I have a degree in elementary education, but after teaching two years I realized it was not for me. Instead, we started our family, and for many years I was a stay-at-home mom. I love all types of needlecraft-- crochet, knitting, embroidery and sewing. Then I discovered quilting and everything else went by the wayside


2. How did you get started sewing/quilting?

I have always sewed. I grew up in a family of six girls (no brothers). My grandmother sewed, my mother sewed most of our clothing, and we all learned to sew at an early age. I made doll clothes, embroidered and hemmed tea towels and then graduated into making most of my own clothes (including designing and making my own prom dresses). Later, when my children were small I also sewed craft projects and dolls.

3. What do you like best about quilting?  

I like every aspect of quilting, but the best part is playing with fabric, color and design.  Even my spare time is filled with quilting!

Quilting has also put me in touch with women all over the world who have quickly become my friends. This common interest bonds women of all ages and backgrounds together. Think of all the friends you have made through quilting! 

4. What is the hardest thing about quilting?  

That's an easy question-- not enough time!


5. How much time do you sew or quilt during an average week?

It really varies. It seems to be feast or famine. Some weeks I have office work or pattern writing to do and don't have time to sew. Other times, such as when a deadline looms or a new collection of fabric just arrived, I do nothing but sew, sleep and eat for weeks. Ideally I would like to sew everyday, all day. When I relax in the evening I always have either a hand applique or hand quilting project that I pick up.

6. Do you name your projects or label them? 

Yes, I always name my "babies", but also forget what I've called them. Labeling? I always recommend it strongly as I am also a quilt historian, but am not good about following my own advice. 


7. How did you start designing fabric?  

It happened as a lucky accident. I was demoing my tools at Quilt Market, and there was a new fabric company in the booth next door. When I looked at their fabric swatches, I noticed they were old designs, but in modern colors. I commented that their colors were wrong for the time period, and they promptly asked me if I could do better! After Market I sent color swatches and a selection of vintage fabrics that showed how the colors worked together, and that was how my first "Granny" collection was created. I designed 30s fabrics for Chanteclaire Fabrics for eight years, and for Robert Kaufman Fabrics for the past 5 years.

8. What is your favorite step in the fabric design process?  

I like all the steps, but probably creating the different colorways for each design is the most fun.

9. How did Clothesline Club start?

I had so many requests for patterns and ideas for using the 30s prints, and many shops were asking for a 30s club.  


10. What can people look forward to this year in Clothesline Club?  

The three collections; Buttercup, Sweet Pickin's and Sweethearts are some of the best collections I have ever created. The projects range from large to small; and teach a variety of techniques. 

11. You also design tools & rulers for Simplicity... tell us more!

Back in 1991 I was teaching quilting in community education classes. While teaching, I discovered a need for a quarter-square triangle tool (cuts triangles with the long edge on the straight of grain). I had my husband cut the triangle out of plexiglas and discovered how well it worked with an existing tool, Easy Angle. I contacted that company and after only nine months I convinced a man (non-quilter) At EZ Quilting to manufacture and sell my tool, Companion Angle. This was my ticket into the quilt industry. I also started publishing pattern books at that time. I now have twenty tools with EZ Quilting (Simplicity), and have published five books with EZ Quilting and seven books with Krause (F & W Media), with a new book coming out Fall 2011.

12. What inspires you? 

Anything and everything. The colors of nature, the colors and designs of antique quilts, and the world around us. There are pattern, design and color everywhere we look, and we just need to pay attention to it.

13. Anything else you want to tell us?

I would just like to give a big hug and thank you to everyone that has helped me along the way; to friends that have encouraged me and fellow quilters who use my tools, sew my designs and buy my fabric! I have been so blessed to be a part of the quilting world for almost twenty years.


Darlene's Booth at Fall 2010 Quilt Market

-Want to join the Clothesline Club?  Ask about it at your Local Shop.


Where to Buy Section

of the Robert Kaufman site will be updated with the 2011 Participating Shops soon.

-Also you can see more photos from

Darlene's Booth and Quilt Market on Flickr



Photos from

Julie Herman

Interview questions from

Nicole of A Stitch in Design

as seen on the

Philly Modern Quilt Guild Blog


I'll be back on November 19th with A Little Birdie Told Me!

volume 1 post 7

{ julie herman blogs at 

jaybird quilts


All about Amanda Murphy

All about Amanda Murphy

Amanda Murphy is one of the newest designers at Robert Kaufman. Her debut collection Ambrosia is shipping to stores now. The fabric features idyllic florals and gentle foliage in two graceful colorstories. The Spring colorstory presents a soft palette of subtle lavenders and sky blues while the Summer colorstory offers a brighter, bolder palette of playful pinks and garden greens. Her second line Swiss Chocolate will be shown to shops next week at Quilt Market!

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Daisies and dots are where it's at!

Every once in a while a collection comes along that gets you really really excited... 

...for me this is one of those collections!!!

daisies & dots is designed by

piece of cake designs

you know... becky & linda.... the amazing queens of appliqué!

The debut fabric collection by Piece O’ Cake Designs from Robert Kaufman features three bright & cheery colorstories, a trademark of Piece O’ Cake’s popular look. Playful dots in all shapes and sizes create an overall retro feel, while sweet & whimsical florals add a feminine touch.

Piece O’ Cake Designs is owned and operated by Becky Goldsmith and Linda Jenkins. The pair first met in 1986 at a quilter’s guild meeting, and since then have become especially known for their appliqué designs. Becky and Linda are also top selling authors for

C&T Publishing

. Their quilt books and patterns can be found in a variety of places: at local quilt shops, on many quilting websites, from C&T Publishing, at many book stores, and on the

Piece O’ Cake website


d&d will be in stores january 2011

i took a lot of photos for you!!

small dots

i think the orange is my favorite of the dots

giant dots!

in three yummy colors

here are the big dots with the little dots to show you scale

tiny daisies

bigger daisies... on bright yummy colors

flowers and ribbons

big flowers!

i really like the blue ones

these remind me of bubbles...

the last print in the collection is tiny flowers & dots

this collection has it all

great bright colors

and a big variety of scale!

once i got the fabric i started playing right away...

and i have a few projects in the works with it.

first up is another

circle around


daisies and dots will be available Ten Squares

pair it with some

chocolate kona crush

... and you have a quilt!

my favorite blue again!

it'll also be available in Roll-Ups

and fat quarter bundles by color way!

if you love daisies & dots as much as I do... tell your local quilt shop!

Piece O’ Cake Designs also created the Daisies & Dots free quilt pattern.  The finished quilt measures 52-1/2” x 52-1/2” and will be available to download free from


. The quilt pattern includes three border variations, each shown in a different colorstory.

and since i told you my favorite print... which one is your favorite?

and what are you working on?

p.s.  giveaway on my blog featuring d&d on monday!!


I'll be back on September 24th!

volume 1 post 3

{ julie herman blogs at

jaybird quilts



on 2010-09-14 16:39 by Robert Kaufman Fabrics

Hi all! If you are here for Julie's Daisies & Dots Giveaway, please make sure you not only leave a comment here but on her blog as well. You can click this link here. And don't forget to mention @jaybirquilts and @robertkaufman on Twitter for a bonus entry! Thanks everyone and best of luck with this giveaway!

Mon Sheri Waves {tutorial}


As promised I have a tutorial for you today!  I've always been interested in doing a quilt with the traditional Drunkard's Path block... but putting a twist on it.  Once I saw the Mon Sheri fabric I immediatly had my idea.  I decided to set the blocks on point and arrange the colors to create waves.

I hope you love this quilt as much as I do!  I've prepared a PDF tutorial for creating the quilt as well as a YouTube video.  The YouTube video goes through cutting your blocks and sewing them together using the Curve Master foot.  I saw this foot demonstrated at the Lancaster AQS show and was amazed at how easy it was!  Typically sewing curves requires a lot of pins and with this amazing foot it doesn't!  It was one of my best purchases of the show.

quilt details

fabric is Mon Sheri by Khristian A. Howell {avaialable in october}
pattern - Mon Sheri Waves
designed by me
quilted by ... {not quilted yet!}
started on 7/3/2010
top finished on 8/26/2010
quilt measures - 48" x 67.5"

Thanks again for joining along with me and my new column A Little Birdie Told Me.  I'll be back on September 10th!

{ julie herman blogs at jaybird quilts }