Rose's Quilting Blog

Fabrics That Work Well for Blending

Good morning everyone, 
and a brilliant one it is at that, for no other reason than the day just has a fantastic feeling about it. 
The view out my window in my office here, is just beautiful, the shadings of light and daybreak, the peacefulness and the sound of the birds just starting their day.
Ahhh... such a perfect time of the day, always one of my favorites.

You'll find that I often talk about colour quite a bit,
as this always seems to be one area where many people have problems and learning how colour works together. I tend to find that if you get small snippets of information at a time, then you'll often remember it,as your brain is not so overwhelmed.
Today’s “Inspirational Tip” hopefully will help you within your
personal sewing journey.


 Fabrics that work well for colour blending: 
When I'm choosing my fabrics for a new quilt, most of the time I'll choose all my fabrics at the same time, even though I do not work from patterns. Many of you already know that I just get a “picture in my head” and from there I start, normally never needing to draw it up.

So into a favoured store I go, and I start to work with my main fabrics. 
Once I have these somewhat decided on, then I need to bring in many blending fabrics. 

So let’s say that I'm making yellow roses. I would start off with a yellow fabric, then I need to bring in several shadings of that colour. I'll possibly blend these out to a light lemon and then to a light pink or an orange fabric, for the outside petals and tip of the flower. As the outer petals are often a different colour shading depending on the Rose itself. I'll then blend from the middle shading out to some darker shadings of that colour as well.






Many times I may use approx 10 "shading fabrics" of the one colour.

Then again as the flower gets a little older the outer petals will go much lighter.

By having all these different shadings of the one colour,helps to create a much more natural look to your work, and it is often very “subtle” through the gentle changes of shades or colour. These are normally all blended heavily amongst any "patterned" fabrics that I may be using.


I always find that the best “blending” fabrics are.....
Shadowplays, as they come in many shades of the one colour, they are slightly mottled and they just blend well with other fabrics.  I also find Hoffman “mottled” style of fabrics to be really fantastic for blending as well, and you'll find that within my “small stash” or “palette” as I prefer to call it, mainly this style of blending fabrics.

Many hand dyed fabrics will also work very well for blending, but please do be careful of these as they sometimes can very easily have dye runs happen, no matter how much you treat them before use. They're beautiful to work with though and their colours are often just what you need for a particular area.

You may like to check out this blog posting I wrote about removing dye runs from your work.

Anyway, I can feel that my fingers are wanting to take off here, as there's so much that I could write about colour and tonal values, etc, so before I grow this posting into a novel, I'll leave you all here today to ponder over your fabric stash and blending fabrics.
Check out my personal favoured style of blending fabrics below.

I will be back again real soon though,
In the meantime

Make sure that you share a cuppa
and some time with someone who’s
“Special” in your life.

Have an absolutely beautiful day.

Rose Lewis Quilting


     Left ... Hoffman style      Centre ... Hand dyed     Right ... Shadow Play

How to Bring More Life & Light to "YOUR Quilts Easily!


Good morning everyone,

As I sit in my office writing this to you, it's just on daybreak, the sun is just trying to poke through, the chooks have started to cackle, and the Magpies are happily warbling away in the neighbors very large Gum tree that overhangs into our property, and there is a beautiful vase of golden daffodils sitting on a table in my office, with their very happy faces.

It all makes me feel so very appreciative to have so much abundance of nature and beauty surround me.

I spent my weekend "playing" in dirt and mud to some degree, while working out in our front garden where I have totally stripped out a water feature that wasn't working so well these days, and I'm totally revamping this. It is half done and hopefully this coming weekend I'll get the waterfall part of it built. I'm just waiting for some slate pieces to arrive and the liner to go into the pond.

Today's posting is one that I'm bringing back from a previous website that I used to have, and I know that some of you will have already read this, but there are thousands of people who haven't and I feel that it's a good one that gives a little more insight on just how to make colour work for you within your quilt.

Today I would like to give you some insight in how to bring your “quilt” to life with colour to give your beautiful quilt “light”.

As I like to draw, but not as much as I would dearly like to, due to time and other things that I also do in my life. Geoff and I love going to art galleries whenever we get the chance.
There's always lots of inspiration within the walls of an art gallery. If you actually “open your eyes”, you'll be amazed at just what you're really able to see.

My favourite type of painting is the Impressionist’s, with my favourite being Claude Monet. I had read on several occasions that he ALWAYS places “WHITE” somewhere within his paintings, to give him “LIGHT”.

We visited an exhibition in Melbourne, some time ago now,
that was exhibiting some of “Monet’s” many works, which as we all know and recognise, these are incredible pieces of timeless art, and couple of year's ago while visiting Paris, we went to the Musee D’ Orsay, art gallery, where for most of the time we spent there, approx 5 hours, was in the Impressionists area.This was one of my highlights of our trip to Europe, and I would dearly love to go back to this art gallery.

I spent a very long time studying “Monet’s” paintings,
and yes they all appear to have white within them somewhere, and yes this white does bring light into them.

Now, I am no “Claude Monet” by any means,
but when I look at the “quilts” that I've made, I see that I've also added white throughout the biggest majority of my quilts; maybe this was just something that my subconscious already knew!

If you look at my “Through the Garden Gate”  quilt ,you'll see that I've added quite a bit of white in the lower part of this quilt, as not only was white the colour that was needed for the particular flowers that I had made, but the bottom definitely needed this extra “light” to bring it alive, as the bottom part of this quilt is very heavy looking.



We can learn a lot from our great artists of times gone by.
It's a shame that they didn't have the quality of paints, brushes, thinners, lights, canvases, etc that we all have today, as they were such great master’s in their time, imagine how much better they would have been in today’s time, as if they needed any improvement!

Most of us are very aware that if you wish to bring a photo up closer
on our computer screens, we just click on the image and roll the mouse in, to see the image closer and in more detail of a particular area. The further you roll your mouse in, the more pixelated, the image becomes. We seem to think that this is a very new and brilliant way to see colours.
It isn’t…….

While looking at the paintings at the Musee D’Orsay, there are several different artists including Georges Seurat, Paul Signac and of course Claude Monet, who had discovered that colours were strongest when placed point to point, alongside each other, of course creating pixels. This is in the approximate era of the 1880’s.

Georges Seurat had studied this for some time, as he thought of “colour” as a science,
and made precise investigations into this. I quote from a paragraph of writing in a book I have, called “Impressionism, 50 Paintings You Should Know”,   page 92…
“Georges Seurat concluded that the brilliance of a painting was the greatest, when pure colours were placed, point by point, alongside each other. He transferred these findings to his paintings”…unquote…

These pictures were painted using tiny, tiny dots and lines….pixels. The image here is a photo that I have taken out of the above mentioned book.

Now if we go back to what I was saying about rolling your mouse in further on your computer,
until the image is no longer recognisable, you'll notice that your image is now starting to pixelate......Bring your mouse in even further, and this is a great way to really see just what colours, that colours are really made from.

Go ahead and give this a try, if you are not already familiar with this technique.
Scan an image of something into your computer, then click on an area with your mouse, and just keep rolling it in until the image is totally pixelated. I find it to be rather amazing. You can easily use this, for working out what colours you need to place within your quilt for a particular effect.

When choosing the colours for my  “Through the Garden Gate” quilt, I had used this technique to get the colours just right, particularly the Clematis buds and the part opened flowers.

You'll actually be amazed at just how many colours are within “white”.

I will leave you with the above information here today, to really think about
“How you can add "White & Light" into your quilts”.

I could write about this forever, but I don't want to overload or bore you with too much information. I'm positive that I'll touch on the subject of colour many times throughout my journey of writing to you, as it's such a diverse subject. Please feel free to leave an awesome comment as well, as this is where I'll be able to connect with you all.

Till we chat again,
Find yourself some time to sew and most of all
have the most “amazing” week.


Rose Lewis Quilting

A Simple Thing Added To “YOUR” Sewing Machine That Can Make A HUGE Difference to “YOUR” Sewing



Good morning everyone,

and I certainly hope that your day is progressing very nicely.

I know that it's winter in my part of the world, but wow, those frosts that we've had over the last couple of weeks have certainly told us that winter is here....minus 2 degrees Celsius is cold, although many parts of Australia experienced minus 7 degrees. This, in my thoughts, certainly makes good weather and a fabulous excuse for sitting in front of the fire doing lots of sewing.

 There are many shows happening at this time of the year right around Australia that'll give you lot’s of brilliant inspirations, enthusiasm, knowledge and new creative energies.

 We all LOVE going to shows, seeing new products, the amazing quilts that are hanging that have all been made filled with love, excitement, ideas and creativeness. Some will have ribbons on them, some will not, but that doesn’t mean that there is anything wrong with these quilts, it’s just that sometimes the judges just don’t have enough ribbons to give to everyone.
That to me would be such a hard job and decision in deciding just which quilts to give the ribbons to, of course there are some big criteria’s that the judges need to abide to when doing their judging and award giving.

 Anyway today I’m going to ask you:

Do you struggle sewing on those borders, doing your quilting, etc from not having enough or the correct support for your quilt when sewing?

 I have a very easy answer for you on this question.

When I’m sewing my quilts, whether they are as small as a sheet of A4 paper, or as big as 3 mts square, or whether they are as light as a few sheets of A4 paper or as heavy as 7 kgs, I like to always work on a very solid and very flat area while sewing.
You need to have your work well supported, where you won’t get any sagging, and you need to have the flat area quite big.

When sewing small pieces it's fantastic to be able to have them flat while you're sewing, and not to have the edges drop over the edge of the machine. You can see your work so much better when it's sitting flat and straight while sewing.
Larger quilts need lots more support and once again, you need to be able to easily see what you’re sewing.

Having a really big and solid sewing machine extension table will alleviate many problems that people have while trying to sew or quilt either without a sewing machine extension table or one that is very small and is often quite flimsy within itself.

I myself, have the most brilliant wooden sewing machine extension table that's very solid, but very light, it's absolutely huge being 59.5 cms X 89 cms, easily slides on and off the machine and is also very simple to carry if you need to take it with you anywhere.

Without this sewing machine extension table that I myself personally have,
that my husband made for me approx 10 years ago now, I would definitely find it harder to work with my quilts, both in the creating, the piecing, the sashings, the quilting, adding the binding & hanging sleeve, the huge amount of appliqué & trapunto that I do, and anything else that many of you do as well.

Today I would like to share more information about this sewing machine extension table with you all, so that hopefully many of you can also enjoy one of these for your personal machine. Yes, this sewing machine extension table can also fit “YOUR” personal sewing machine.

So here is a “new” 3 minute video for you to check out,
you also get to see me and to hear my voice for a change and soak in some of my quilting enthusiasm as well. When you've also fallen in love with the idea of you, yourself, having one of these brilliant tables, you can easily and quickly purchase the book & pattern in either an instant downloadable PDF book & pattern, or for those in Australia, you can purchase the paperback book.

It's very simple to make, simpler than you could imagine,
and I've added in many images and precise clear instructions.

So do enjoy this short 3 min video.

The first step to achieving something,
is knowing that you want it,
and I just know that you want one of these.

Have the most brilliant day
and I'll be back again real soon
with something else to help you grow
within "your" personal sewing & quilting journey.