Gallery
Lectures & Workshops Store Bio/Contact Me Schedule

Gallery


Color Wheel
Creating this fabric color wheel was like going on a scavenger hunt. I shopped and shopped to find the perfect fabrics: a blue-green that was equal parts blue and green, a just-right version of red-violet, a complement tint (the innermost circle) of green. It hangs, framed in black metal, in my studio and travels with me to workshops and lectures. See Store. 23" x 23"


Lustrous Squares II
Here are Lustrous blocks made using Gradations ombrés and Kaffe Fassett prints. I wanted to space out the blocks with sashing, and although I have many black-and-white prints, I went with this dramatic design. To keep the blocks from blending with the sashing, I added narrow red flanges. The skinny strips of intense color make the blocks appear to advance, as if they’re floating above a black-and-white background. Machine quilted by Cathy Stone. See Lectures & Workshops for the class. 48” x 48”




Lustrous Squares
This super-simple quilt takes advantage of the color and value gradations of ombré fabrics. By orienting the strips around the center square so that the light ends are in the upper right of each block and the dark ends in the lower left, you can suggest a sweep of light from a side source. A large-scale black-and-white border sets off the bocks but doesn’t compete. See the Store for a kit that includes the pattern and Gelato ombré strips, and Lectures & Workshops for the class. 50" x 50"

Batiks and stylized florals make great center squares for “Gradations” ombré fabrics.


Urban Ombrés
I love what happens when you combine prints, stripes, and variegated fabrics. In this quilt, rich ombrés are paired with one gray ombré to create the illusion of light sweeping across the surface. Marcia Derse's organic prints in the block centers give the design visual weight. Add black-and-white stripes to complete this "urban environment." Machine quilted in a random plaid pattern by Cathy Stone. 42" x 42" This quilt is a class; see Lectures & Workshops.


Brushed Metal
When I first saw the "Serenity" ombrés, their subtle gradations reminded me of satiny metallic surfaces. Orienting the ombré strips so the light flows in both directions gives the quilt a sense of movement. Aligning the motifs in the sashing creates a smooth visual transition. Machine quilted by Sandra Bruce. 46" x 46". This quilt is a class; see Lectures & Workshops.



Market Bag
Combining fabrics has to be my favorite step in making a quilt, or in this case, a bag. I chose a green Marcia Derse print, a Kaffe Fassett stripe, and a multicolored batik. The fabrics are sewn onto a foundation of pet-screen material—not the easiest "fabric" to work with, but it makes for a very durable bag.



Sassy Circles II
I love circles quilts! This one has lots of pattern action: highly patterned florals for the circles, near-solid ombrés for the background triangles, geometric stripes for the "shadows," and a large-scale white-and-black print for the sashing. It's almost too much, but I had so much fun. This quilt is a class; see Lectures & Workshops. 33" x 33".



Deco Circles
If the fabrics are right, you don't need many. One Alexander Henry art-deco fabric had enough pattern variation to create different yet related circles. The background triangles are made using Serenity ombré 108, available in the Store. I love the light and movement of the ombrés—they bring a quilt to life. Made using my Elegant Circles pattern, also available in the Store. 33" x 33"


White Opals and Gelato
Opalescence is one of the most elusive of the special effects with color because it relies on such subtle variations in value and color. I used an opal-like batik fabric for the inner triangles of this quilt, surrounded by triangles of slightly duller, darker shot cottons. To give the design some punch (but not overwhelm the opalescence), I chose brighter shot cottons for the rectangles. Corner squares cut from a subtle stripe create a shimmering secondary pattern where four blocks meet. 53" x 53", machine quilted by Cathy Stone.



Transparent Circles
Overlay transparency, the illusion that a lighter or darker shape of see-through color floats over a layer of color below, creates an ethereal effect in this simple quilt. I used two kinds of fabrics: Kaffe Fassett shot cottons in light and medium-dark values, with 11 different Marcia Derse patterned and mottled-color fabrics for variety. Click image for larger view. 44" x 44"


Black Opals & Ribbon Candy
Think “opalescence,” and most of us visualize the soft, milky colors of white opals. But when I discovered Australian black opals, with their flashes of brilliant color among much darker colors, I wanted to capture their natural beauty with fabric. This design is based on the Churn Dash block. By shifting the units in the nine-patch construction over and up by one unit, the secondary pattern (where four traditional Churn Dash blocks would meet) becomes primary, and the primary pattern takes on a supporting role. Machine quilted by Cathy Stone. Click image for larger view. See Store. 53 ¾" x 53 ¾"

And as you can see here, fabrics in different colors and values create very different designs. Can you find the Churn Dash block in these images? (The center square of one Churn Dash block is at the center of each image.)


Squares and Stripes
In designing this modular quilt, I gave equal consideration to the concepts of value, temperature, and intensity. Wider logs of lighter-value color surround narrower, darker ones. Warm and cool colors mingle, as well as bright and dull ones. Intense center squares, a staple of traditional Log Cabin quilts, add a dash of red-hot color. Using a striped fabric for the border and centering the stripes suggests that the design flows vertically and horizontally, beneath the blocks. Machine quilted by Sharon Cook. Click image for larger view. 38" x 38"


Elegant Circles
Three very different fabrics make magic in this little shadowed circle quilt, inspired by the work of Reynola Pakusich and begun in a Judy Mathieson workshop. Light appears to bounce off the borders; triangles of the same fabrics, in other colors, glow behind the intense patterned circles. Elin Noble fabrics in the remaining triangles and the quilt corners imply horizontal movement. Machine quilted by Carol Walsh. Click image for larger view. See Store. 32" x 32"


Sassy Circles
Light-value sashing makes a shadowed-circle quilt look airy and modern. The large-scale sashing fabric, which would logically take over visually, still recedes because it is mostly white. As a result, the brightly colored circles come forward and seem to float above a backdrop of funky flowers. 33" x 33". Machine quilted by Barbara Ceresa.


Luminaria
When it comes to the special effect of luminosity, color choices are everything: warm, intense colors surrounded by cooler, duller colors just seem to glow. Certain fabrics with dappled color—in particular batiks—help to create a luminous look. In this modular quilt you’ll find lots of batiks, but I also used a few prints and stripes for variety and an element of surprise. Machine quilted by Carol Walsh. Click image for larger view. 61 1/2" x 61 1/2"


Galaxy
Transparency is easy to achieve using a Nine Patch pattern; the pieces just naturally read as “parents” and “child.” In this asymmetrical take on the traditional block, color, value, and pattern create not only the illusion of transparency, but also a visual flow within each block. This quilt is one of two patterns offered in my Transparency workshop. Fabric is everything when working with transparency, and you must make mock-blocks to achieve the most convincing illusions. Machine quilted by Cathy Stone. Click image for larger view. 37" x 37"


Parfait Dreams
In this redesign of the traditional Connecticut block, the nine main blocks advance because the large triangles are dark and intense, while the alternate blocks and setting pieces recede, thanks to their mostly lighter and less-intense fabrics. The lighter-value striped border recedes even more, putting the focus on the center portion of the quilt. Machine quilted by Carol Walsh (quiltthis@sbcglobal.net). Click image for larger view. 42" x 42"

Earthscape
Value, temperature, and intensity are all at work in this small collage quilt. Light-value background fabrics by Elin Noble (www.elinnoble.com) suggest a sulfurous sky; dark-value foreground fabrics depict the volcanic landscape of Kilauea. Where the lava meets the ocean, light-value fabrics imply rising steam. The raw-edge pieces are adhered to the foundation with Misty Fuse. Machine quilted by Carol Walsh (quiltthis@sbcglobal.net). Click image for larger view. 28" x 36"


Lotus Leaves Squared
It’s all about value (lightness and darkness) in this design. Half of the blocks began with a red center square surrounded by a light, medium, and dark strip. For the other blocks, I reversed the order—a red center square surrounded by a dark, medium, and light strip. I then “whacked” each block horizontally and vertically to make quarter-units, which I assembled into the final blocks. I didn’t plan to border this quilt, but the Kaffe Fassett lotus-leaf print, which had languished on my shelf for some time, changed my mind. Machine quilted by Carol Walsh (quiltthis@sbcglobal.net). Click image for larger view. 59" x 59"


Puss in the Corner on the Courthouse Steps
Kaffe Fassett (www.gloriouscolor.com) and Michael James fabrics make up this design, which was inspired by Terry Atkinsonn’s “Tile Tango” pattern (www.atkinsondesigns.com/patterns/patternDetail.asp?productID=131). Ikat-wash fabrics in light green, peach, and lavender mix with darker prints and stripes in the Puss-in-the-Corner units; strips of darker, brighter ikat-wash fabrics “corral” the units and form the blocks. The striped border has an opalescent quality, a special effect that occurs when various colors in similar values are juxtaposed. Machine quilted by Teresa Leavitt. Click image for larger view. 68" x 68"


Tile Dance
This quilt is a replica of the glass tile backsplash I designed for my kitchen, down to the colors and dimensions of the pieces. Value plays a major role: medium-light 8’’ plain squares serve as the backdrop for darker 4” plain squares and multi-value 1” squares. Temperature is an important element, too: the mix of warm and cool colors “makes the quilt dance,” said a friend, hence the name. I used solids from Cherrywood and tossed in a few batiks and checks to give it sparkle. Machine quilted by Carol Walsh. Click image for larger view. 50 1/2'' x 66 1/2''


Tropical Hole in the Barn Door
Students often ask, “How do you choose fabrics for a quilt that repeats a single block?” I follow a color-and-value recipe to create variety and cohesion in repeat-block quilts. For a contemporary take on the traditional Hole in the Barn Door block, I followed this recipe: a red center square; batik surrounding squares; cool, dark inner triangles; light outer triangles; and warm strips that form the lattice. Machine quilted by Carol Walsh (quiltthis@sbcglobal.net). Click image for larger view. 52" x 56"



Siesta
This little leftovers quilt illustrates how easy it is to turn a secondary pattern into a primary pattern. Each olive green polka-dot square would be the center of a traditional Churn Dash block, with the striped triangles in the outer corners of the block. By shifting the block units, four striped triangles congregate to make a primary pattern. The light-value Kaffe Fassett stripe, pale batik, and polka dot fabrics form the backdrop and become the secondary pattern. Machine quilted by Teresa Leavitt. Click image for larger view. 44" x 56"




Double Four Patch
This block is the first exercise we do in my Color Camp workshop. To make the design work, you need just enough contrast for the pieces to separate visually, but not so much that one fabric "pops." Once again, I had a color-and-value recipe: the vertical small squares are warm and light, and the remaining small squares are warm and dark. The larger squares are cool and dark, while the surrounding triangles are cool and light. The fabrics are all from Cherrywood. Machine quilted by Beverly Bixler. 42" x 49"


Garments



Kimono Collage Vest
An exquisite Gingko-leaf fabric was the catalyst for this collage-and-surface-stitched vest. I fussy-cut the "postcards" from a Japanese fabric, then added shots of magenta and salmon to the predominantly yellow-green color scheme. Made from my pattern of the same name. I used this pattern to make many of the vests you see here.



Reversible Vest with Hong Kong Seam Finish
For this two-in-one vest, I lengthened my Kimono Collage Vest pattern two inches and bound the seam allowances on the inside (the Hong Kong seam technique) to make the vest truly reversible. I constructed the collar from two fabrics, though you could use one fabric that works with both sets of vest fabrics. This vest is a class; see Lectures & Workshops.





Woven-Color Vest
Raw-edge strips weave in and out to make the “fabric” for this blended-color vest. I wove the strips over a foundation of Osnaburg (an inexpensive, loosely woven fabric, usually natural in color, available at stores like JoAnn). Stitching along the edges of the warp (lengthwise) and weft (crosswise) strips, followed by vertical stitching, secures the strips. Narrow ribbon covers the lengthwise edges. Directions for the weaving are in my book The Quilter’s Color Club.



Circles and Stripes Vest
For this vest I decided to collage just the right front and do something simpler (and faster) on the left front and back. I used Marcia Derse and Kaffe Fassett fabrics on the right front. The left front, back, and backing (which functions as the lining) are all Marica Derse fabrics. A layer of Osnaburg between the collage fabrics and the backing fabric gives the vest body.



Rick Rack Circles Vest

The lower fabric on the fronts and the back of this vest looks pieced, but it’s one Marcia Derse fabric. I combined a variety of other fabrics to make the backdrop for appliquéd ombré circles trimmed in hand-dyed rick rack. I then layered the fronts and back vest pieces with Osnaburg and a floral backing fabric. This time I ran the stripes lengthwise on the collar and bound the edges with the same fabric as the collar, only cut on the bias.




Felted Circles Vest
A similar intensity unites torn squares of Cherrywood fabrics in this vest. I created the soft circles by teasing apart lengths of novelty wool yarn into roving, then needle felting them with an attachment for my Bernina. All of the seam allowances are on the outside of the garment, and are bound using the Hong Kong seam technique. You can see the effect on the back of the vest, which is made from one piece of hand-dyed fabric that I cut apart and rejoined.






Sail Away Vest

While in my “Cherrywood phase,” I made this summery vest. I am always in my “stripes phase,” so for this vest I created striped fabrics using Inkodye resist and Inkodyes (they turn color in the sun). I tore the fabrics into raw-edge squares, then stitched them to a background of pieced Cherrywood squares, large and small. The edges are bound with my striped fabric—cut on the bias, of course!



Crossover Collage Vest
This is an asymmetrical vest with button-and-loop closure; you’ll see two other versions below. Using batiks, prints, and woven stripes, I collaged the right front over a layer of Osnaburg and foundation fabric, which becomes the lining, then randomly surface-stitched and washed the entire piece to create the crinkly texture. The left front and back are a Japanese fabric. The raw-edge binding is couched with a narrow chenille yarn.


Kelp Forest Vest
A large-scale batik fabric in red-violet, blue-violet, and yellow-green was the inspiration for this collage vest; additional fabrics in other colors and values make the design more appealing. The detail shows how much surface stitching I did to create the actual texture and blend the collage pieces into one “fabric.” The left front crosses over the right front because it looked better that way.


Summer Triangles Vest
Here's an earlier version of my Crossover Collage pattern using Kaffe Fassett stripes and light-value batiks. Basic color theory is at work here: the darker-value striped fabrics advance, while the lighter-value batiks recede and read as background. The blocks are only 4½" square, a nice size for a wearable. The vest is lined, with a double-fold binding cut from the bias of one of my favorite Kaffe stripes.


Stripes and Squares Vest
Twin-needle stitching on a Kaffe Fassett stripe gives this vest actual (tactile) and visual (perceived) texture. I paper-pieced the squares that run down the sides and the back; a cotton lamé stripe connects the blocks and makes a smooth visual transition to the body of the vest. On the collar, narrow strips of a Japanese indigo fabric link sections of colorful hand-dyed and printed fabrics. (The pattern is Vogue 8000, which has been discontinued.)




Happy Jacket
The name I've given this colorful jacket is frivolous, but that's just how I felt when making it. And that's how I feel when I wear it—happy! Working on a sweatshirt is very forgiving; the raw-edge strips and surface stitching disguise any irregularities. (Translation: precision is not required.) Chenille circles and rick rack make it special.


Concentric Squares
Framing a block composed of squares accentuates the modular design. Watery batiks for the “rounds” and a woven plaid for the center square have a dreamy effect. The pieces are stitched to a muslin foundation, but the block is not quilted. I matted and framed the block using nonglare glass and a brushed-metal frame. 16" x 16"



Miniature Kimono Collage
A raw-edge-and-fused fabric “sketch” for a full-size vest takes on a life of its own as a framed piece. 16" x 24"



Off-Beat Nine-Patch
Designing and making these paper-pieced 6-inch blocks was so much fun that I went on to make “Squares and Stripes.” 25" x 26"