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Christine's Color Connection

A newsletter for quilters in love with color

October 2015    

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The Quilter's Color Club has lots of info on every aspect of color. You can find my book on my website  
It's Finally Fall!     
And I'm as busy as ever, traveling to teach and minding my online store. This issue is mostly about my one-woman show in Weaverville, CA, but be sure to scroll all the way down for info on my "Color Made Modern" workshop this coming weekend at Sugar Pine Quilt Shop in Grass Valley. It's my favorite class to teach, so come and find out why.

My Gallery Adventure
Two weekends ago I drove north to Weaverville, home to an active art community and dear friends Evelyn and John Ward. (Evelyn is an amazing watercolorist.) This was my second show at the Main Street Gallery, where Evelyn is on the board. Besides being a lot of fun, it was fascinating to hear comments from people who aren't familiar with contemporary quiltmaking. I thought you'd enjoying hearing what others think, and wonder, about quilts.

"Wow!" was the comment I heard most as people walked through the door the night of the reception. When hanging the quilts the day before, I asked if we could put the more colorful quilts on one wall and the less intense ones on the opposite wall. I call it a "color connection," when fabrics or quilts have related, but not matching, colors. To my eye, they seem harmonious without looking too planned.   

Evelyn and I met when we worked for an ad agency in Sacramento. I was an intern and a total rookie, but it was a great job because we became friends. After careers in publishing, we're both happy to be doing what we love. Good for us!

About the transparency quilts above, I was surprised at how many people were drawn to this effect, and how curious they were to know how to create it. It's really about choosing the right values and keeping the intensity consistent. The term "shot cotton" (a fabric woven with different-colored threads) drew a number of questions, too.

Black-and-white is always a winner. We hung the quilt above and my color wheel side by side because they both have intense colors and black.  

You've seen this quilt, "Solids + Plaids" before, but I wanted you to check out Sandra Bruce's cool quilting. She's the best!

"Puss in the Corner on the Courthouse Steps," below, combines two traditional blocks, but it has lots of contemporary fabrics: ikats, prints, and stripes by Kaffe Fassett and opalescent stripes by Michael James. I was so happy to hear comments about the sense of depth and layering in this quilt. Hey, I thought, they get it!

On to the more neutral wall. "How do you choose your fabrics?" was probably the most-asked question, followed by, "Where do you find these fabrics?" Those questions reinforce my belief that different types of fabric (woven stripes, ombrés, Japanese prints, for example) make a quilt more interesting. 

We put my framed, paper-pieced, nine-block composition next to "Urban Ombrés" because of their black-and-white connection. Ombré fabrics were new to just about everyone.

People noticed the sashing, though the term was unfamiliar, in quilts like "Brushed Metal," below.

"How did you decide on that black-and-white print?" I auditioned at least six different fabrics for the sashing in "Lustrous Squares II," below, and to my surprise, this was the one. Bold and busy as it is, this print still reads as background, making the blocks appear to float. The narrow red flanges help with the effect.

"How do you decide on the quilting?" was the question about "Earthscape." Carol Walsh did a phenomenal job free-motion quilting this wall hanging, and it was fun to point out the different shapes and textures she created with thread. More than a few people asked about Elin Noble's hand-painted fabrics in the background. "You mean you can paint fabric???" 

"Well, these aren't like any quilts I've seen" was my favorite comment, It was fun to watch people look at color and quilts in a different way. Some told me about quilts in their past and how much they meant to them. That's what keeps us making quilts, the memories they evoke and the people who made them.

Join Us! 
Changing gears, I'd love to have you join my "Color Made Modern" workshop at Sugar Pine Quilt Shop this coming Saturday and Sunday. Email me for details and the supply list; call the shop to sign up at (530) 272-5308. Below is the "Japanese X Plus" block. In addition to making cut-and-paste mock blocks, you'll have the opportunity to begin a new quilt using my piecing directions for two favorite modern blocks.

This block has hand-dyed solids and a wild print by Kim Schaefer.
Here's another version, with Kaffe Fassett prints and a Moda white-and-black.
  That's it for now. Thanks so much for looking and listening! 

Lecture and Workshop Schedule 


October 20-21, Redondo Beach CA, "Buying Fabric with Color in Mind" lecture, "Elegant Circles" workshop, South Bay Quilters Guild


October 24-25, Grass Valley, CA, "Color Made Modern," Sugar Pine Quilt Shop, (530) 272-5308


November 15, Lakeport, CA, "Color!" lecture, Ladies of the Lake Quilt Guild 



March 9, Stockton, CA, "Color!" lecture, Tuleburg Quilt Guild

March 23, Stockton, CA "Modern Color" workshop, Tuleburg Quilt Guild

April 15-17, Durango, CO, lecture and workshop TBD, Four Corners Quilt Gathering

May 5-7, Sammamish, WA, lecture and two workshops TBD, Block Party Quilters

June 11-12, Susanville, CA,  two workshops TBD, Susanville Quilt Guild

September 5-9, South Lake Tahoe, NV, workshop TBD, Artistic Alchemy Retreat

October 20-22, Las Vegas, NV, "Color!" lecture, "Modern Color," and "Sassy Circles II" workshops, Desert Quilters of Nevada

November 17-18, Paradise, CA, "Color!" lecture, "Color Camp" workshop, Ridge Quilters Guild

About This Newsletter   

If you've received this newsletter, you may have attended one of my workshops or bought one of my books, patterns, or color wheels. It's easy to opt out, below, but I hope you'll stick around to see what's in store. It's all about color, using it, enjoying it, and sharing it with other quilters.


Thank you! 

Contact Info

Christine Barnes