Friday, April 15, 2011

Design tips from Jennifer..

Jennifer from That Girl That Quilt is visiting us today.. She is sharing her ideas on how she designs her quilts. She is inpirational..
Designing a quilt is probably my favorite part of quilting next to actually quilting the quilt. When I first learned to quilt I remember being amazed at patterns and quilters who could write a pattern or design a quilt as they went along.
But it didn’t take me long to start designing on my own. With quilting constantly on the brain, I began to see quilts everywhere I turned.
I find inspiration in geometric patterns that I come across in daily life…
I sit down and experiment with a flying geese block and an entire quilt comes together in an afternoon…
My best design friend is my sketchbook. I keep it with me all the time. Some of my best ideas come while I’m stuck on a conference call or waiting in the Dr’s office. My second best design friend is Adobe Ideas on my iPad. I can sketch with my finger which really gives me a feel for the design. I love trying different patterns, colors, and the eraser tool is very handy.
I also have a folder of pictures on my iPhone of “things that should be quilts”. Don’t be afraid to snap a picture when you see a pattern. Floors, upholstery, paneling, etc are all great sources of inspiration.
 Do the same thing for colors. Nature often gives us the best color combinations. This entire quilt was inspired by my yellow and purple Iris that bloom each spring in my yard. Purple and yellow were never colors I considered together until I was taking some pictures of my flowers…
Once you have found your inspiration, sketch it out to see how it flows. If you are pleased then make a block or even a mini- quilt with just a few blocks. Decide how large you want the actual quilt and work backwards to determine the block size. Don’t forget to include all your seam allowances for the block and the pieces that make up each block!
And my last favorite design tip... when you are trying to figure out the layout of your blocks, take a picture. It helps your eyes "step back" and see the entire picture. Can you spot the one HST that is off in the picture? I saw it almost immediately but never realized it until I looked at the picture instead of the blocks in real life.
Thanks for having me today. I hope you will hop over and visit me on my blog really soon!


  1. Thank you Jennifer for your design tips. It's amazing at all the patterns you can see in everyday life.

  2. I love all those quilt patterns, thanks so much for sharing!!

  3. I never had thought to take a picture of a potential layout. I love that idea and I'm going to start doing that beginnign with a block I'm working on today! What a great idea. Thanks for sharing your tips and your quilts! :)

  4. It's like looking for Wally! The more I look the less I see! I can't see the HST that's off :o( Your quilts are all so beautiful and individual!

  5. Thank you for sharing! I love the taking the picture idea. thanks.

  6. Beautiful designs. I use photos when I have things on the design wall but I hadn't thought of using my phone when I am out great tip!

  7. I am with Karen on this one. The more I look the less I see - I can't find the HST that is off either. Thanks for sharing you ideas. I carry a note book with but I didn't think about taking pics with my phone.

  8. I see it...I think!:)

    I always take photos of my quilts and put them on my computer before sewing the bits husband sees it from across the room and always finds something that should be someplace else!:)

  9. I take photos of my quilts but not before I put the blocks together. Maybe I need to reconsider that part.

  10. Lovely work with color and design. And I could not spot the HST you say is off....sorry. I looked and looked (for far tooo long in fact, because I was so curious). PLEASE, please tell us which one it is!!!


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