What Shade are You with Tara Faughnan

What Shade Are You Logo 2016

I had the idea in my head for this quilt for quite a few months, so when I was invited to be a part of the What Shade Are You blog tour, I knew immediately what I wanted to make. I usually don’t write down ideas and I don’t keep a sketchbook. If I like an idea it sticks in my head, and I will start to visualize it in that way. This quilt did take some turns as I was in the design stage. Originally I was just going to do a random zig zag quilt, but as I cut and laid out the pieces it was not coming together.


It actually seemed too crazy, and not cohesive. I rearranged the pieces and started to introduce the diamond shapes in a random manner…still too jumbled.


I kept introducing more diamonds into the mix and it came together for me.


For the construction of the quilt, I use a method of freezer paper piecing instead of traditional foundation piecing, which helps create precise points without a ton of effort or precise cutting beforehand. For the quilting, I chose to hand quilt. I like to have something to do at night, and hand stitching gives me an excuse to watch endless episodes of Supernatural and True Blood without guilt.


I used regular DMC embroidery thread, it’s super affordable and has a ton of colors to choose from-can’t go wrong with that!


So lets start with my shades and how to cut them:

Seafood 301

Toyboat 366

Notting hill 309

Nile green 90

Bora bora 328

Proud as a peacock 289

Riviera 274

Horizon 354

Twilight 353

Denim 106

Night 280

Navy 30

Custard 265

Golden topaz 285

Goldenrod 92

Goldilocks 368

Martini olive 343

Cantaloupe 209

Beach coral 355

Raging ruby 287

Bougainvillea 333

My Valentine 295

Putting green 290

Tiffany box 291

Optical white 33

Linen white 32

Flamingo 338

Bronze 195

Shamrock 109

Matcha 315

Bayou 344

Rio 311


Thank you RJR for inviting me to participate, and what lovely fabrics. They are truly a joy to work with-a soft hand, vibrant colors and easy to hand quilt. I had a wonderful time with this blog hop! Make sure to follow me on instagram and check out my website!



What Shade are You with Carolina Asmussen

What Shade Are You Logo 2016


Hi, here is Carolina Asmussen and welcome to my stop on the RJR blog hop! I bought my first sewing machine in 2010 in Switzerland and since then I never stopped to sew. I like to design my own quilts, most of the time for contests and exhibitions (you can check my instagram: @carolasmussen). Over the last 2 years I had the honor of being part of some important exhibitions, like the International Quilt Festival in Houston and American Quilter’s Society Quilt Week.

To design this quilt I was inspired by those balcony gardens some people have in their apartments. I don’t have any talent to take care of plants and flowers… I’m actually allergic to pollen! So, at home, the garden stays outside. But I love to see how people can be creative with their space limitations in their apartments and are able to create compact and colorful gardens. Luckily as a quilter I can bring all the colors I want with fabrics and threads inside my home (without any sneezing).

My mini quilt “Balcony Garden” (41” x 41”) was made especially for RJR Fabrics. For this quilt I used cotton supreme solids to make (64) 5 1/2” drunkard’s path blocks. You can find the template here. Download and before printing make sure you scale to 100% and your template is going to be exactly like mine.

So lets start with my shades and how to cut them:

2 + 1/2 yards- 33T Optical White (background), cut 64 templates B

1/2 yard – 319 Overcast, cut 8 templates A

1/2 yard – 175T Shell Pink, cut 8 templates A

1/2 yard – 286 Ruby Slippers, cut 8 templates A

1/2 yard – 282 Gale Force, cut 8 templates A

1/2 yard – 343 Martini Olive, cut 8 templates A

1/2 yard – 342 Peridot, cut 8 templates A

1/2 yard – 294RP Cove, cut 8 templates A

1/2 yard – 309 RP Nothing Hill, cut 8 templates A

and 3 yards – 362 Argento for the backing fabric and binding


Now it’s time to sew all your templates A and B together, making the 64 drunkard’s blocks. I like to piece every “flower block” first, and after that, piece all the 16 “flower blocks” making my top quilt design.


For quilting I coordinated my fabric shades with the colors of threads (its a good excuse do add more spools to my collection!). I used Aurifil 50wt and to quilt the background variegated thread.


And voilĂ ! My Balcony Garden! Many thanks to RJR for the fun! I was thrilled to work with your amazing cotton supreme fabrics!


What Shade are You with Sandi Hazelwood

What Shade Are You Logo 2016


When people find out my favorite color is purple, I am often asked how I use purple in my work. To me, “purple goes with everything!”.

So when RJR Fabrics asked me if I wanted to participate in their “What Shade Are You” design challenge, I knew I wanted to answer the often asked question through a quilt. I wanted to show how well purple works with other color and can be a “neutral” as a dominant background fabric. For my quilt, I used the following colors:

The Cotton Supreme Solid colors I chose for my quilt top are:

tiffany box
egg nog
gray stone


Once my color palate was chosen, I searched for a pattern to showcase the colors as well as my love for geometric shapes. The Woodcut pattern by Bijou Lovely has been on my “to make” list and fit perfectly with my vision for the quilt. The pattern was easy to use although I would size up the corner pieces by 1/2″ to give yourself extra room for trimming. Otherwise, I was able to make over forty paper pieces blocks with little trouble.



I wanted the quilting to echo the shapes in the quilt so I asked Carrie Hanson of Gotcha Covered Quilting to create the echo in her own design. I feel the quilting does a great job of making the colors “pop” and yet not take away from the overall feeling of the quilt.



What Shade are You with Christine Joubert

What Shade Are You Logo 2016

Hello ! My name is Christine, aka @lopolokko on Instagram I’m a self taught french quilter since 2012. Or let’s say I’m totally addicted since I tried my very first one : can’t stop buying fabrics, always a new design to try, 4 WIP ongoing in parallel and never enough time ….


So when RJR fabrics asked me to join their What Shade Are You challenge, I was very proud and excited, and immediately answered a loud YES !

The came the color card … What shade am I ? It took me ages to decide !!!! I wanted something luminous and bright, and when I received my bundle, yes it was, but I wasn’t fully happy. But RJR people are so nice they offered me to change my mind, and then came a second package.


The Cotton Supreme Solid colors I chose for my quilt top are:

Sunny delight 326
Mandarin 159T
Orchid 216
Hot Pink 217
Rio 311RP
Rhododendron 181T
Amethyst 215
Hydrangea 214
Feeling blue 335
Blue bayou 300
Riveira 274
Turks & caicos 292
Notting Hill 309RP
Peridot 342
Neon 348
On the rocks 283
Meissen blue 271RP

And I couldn’t resist to add some cotton + steel prints:

Sarah Watts – Bear Hugs 5053-1
Rashida Coleman Raindrop –Koinobori Pear 1936-01
Basic Notorious – Plummy 5000-006

For the quilt design, I fell in love with an off centre medallion pattern created by Jo Avery (@mybearpaw on IG) « mix+match medallion », published in love quilting and patchwork magazin #23. Although a few additions of my own, I tried my best to stick to this awesome plan …


So after a summer of color hesitations, I focused on making this quilt during the last months, giving up temporarily my other projects .


And here we are ! Taking the chance of holidays by the ocean, we went to the beach with the quilt and enjoyed a cool time shooting pictures under the sun !


Cotton Supreme Solids are high quality made, vibrant colors, a pleasant touch and it’s a quilter dream to work with these gorgeous fabrics .


Thank you so much RJR for letting me participate to this fantastic experience (Demi, Rachael, Jennifer you are my stars !)


See you soon with scraps and leftovers …

Love your Local Quilt Shop with Dawn’s Quilt Shop

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I started my shop in 2007 and with my undergrad degree in Visual Arts and its focus in fibers, playing with fabric every day is a dream come true. Being creative and picking out fabrics to make a new quilt or sewing project is the most enjoyable part of the process. Seeing it blossom into a beautiful quilt is the added bonus that makes it all very rewarding.


My shop is a family affair. Daughter, Katie, now in college, grew up in the shop, learned how to sew and help customers at an early age. My husband Todd works more behind the scenes, taking care of the books, website, and newsletter emails, while my parents, Marv and Teri Asche, help out in the shop whenever they can. My mom helps teach classes and cut kits, and my dad entertains the customers with his stories. I have three part time gals who help me out in the shop. They help fill in when I’m gone, are very knowledgeable and they are a great help to our customers.


I am a visual person, as are a lot of people, so I try to make as many samples as I have room for. This helps our customers see many different ideas and ways to use the great fabrics. With all of the samples on display, I am fortunate to have several “Quilt Fairies” to help me make the things I come up with. I carry many different fabrics in my store, but you will find a lot of novelties, brights, and modern feeling fabrics, including the full line of RJR’s Cotton + Steel.


I love creating new ways to use the fabrics together. I also love animals, especially cats, so I can say I may have the largest selection of cat fabric in Minnesota, if not in the entire Midwest. My shop resides in beautiful, historic, downtown Alexandria, MN, where, as merchants, we are so proud of our downtown, that we have formed the Alexandria Downtown Merchants Association to keep the downtown area alive and beautiful. This keeps customers coming back to shop day after day, week after week, month after month, and year after year. We offer classes, and I am always trying to reinvent the class offering to keep things fresh and not necessarily “copy” what everyone else is doing. I would rather be the shop that other shops want to copy, than be the one doing the copying.


We do many fun events throughout the year. For one event this year, we have the Designer for the 2016 Quilt Minnesota fabric, Teresa Magnuson, coming for a Meet the Designer/Pre-sell Party to get quilters excited about this year’s Quilt Minnesota statewide Shop Hop. We host several Shop Hop Bus Trips throughout the year and partner with other area quilt shops to come up with other events.


I have two Gammil Statler Stitcher Quilting Machines, which allow me to offer a faster turnaround on the quilts customers bring to me for finishing. These machines are running all the time, so I get to see a lot of great quilt tops from my amazing customers! These machines are out in the open, which allows me to tend to them as I run the store, but they are also great entertainment for the non-quilters, as the fabric lovers are shopping. My shop shares space with a custom framing store and a sewing/alterations studio. This is a great fit for all of us.

We are located in Alexandria, MN. Check us out on Facebook to learn more about our family owned shop!

What Shade are You with Jessica Schunke

What Shade Are You Logo 2016

I was so excited when RJR Fabrics asked me to join their What Shade Are You? Blog Hop. I love working with solids, so I jumped at the chance to try out RJR’s Cotton Supreme Solids for the first time. I’m a big fan of Cotton + Steel fabrics (a division of RJR), so I expected the Cotton Supreme Solids to be the same great quality, and they did not disappoint. The colors are so vivid, the fabric has a beautiful hand, and they were truly a pleasure to work with.


In fact, the hardest part was deciding which colors to choose. When the Cotton Supreme Solids color card arrived, I couldn’t seem to narrow down the options. They were all too good! So I shifted to choosing my pattern, which turned out to be a no-brainer. I’ve been dying to make the Tessellation quilt(pattern by Nydia Kehnle and Alison Glass) since I first saw it, and I knew it would look so good made up in solids, so it seemed like the perfect choice. The pattern calls for 25 fabrics, so I started with the blues and teals (my favorites) and then expanded to the cool pinks and purples to round out my selection.


The Cotton Supreme Solid colors I chose for my quilt top are:

237 Fairy Princess
86 Candyland
226 Charlotte
311 Rio
181 Rhododendron
331 Pink Orchid
333 Bougainvillea
214 Hydrangea
215 Amethyst
345 Caviar
179 Hyacinth
334 Periwinkle
281 Cloud 9
313 Carolina
316 Lancaster Sky
251 Anemone
296 Electric Blue
391 Robins Egg
274 Riviera
292 Turks & Caicos
354 Horizon
328 Bora Bora
392 Schooner
289 Proud as a Peacock
102 Celeste


Additionally, I used Geo Drops in Teal (from Rashida Coleman Hale’s Raindrops collection for Cotton + Steel) for the backing. I love how the hexie drops mimic the triangular shapes on the front of the quilt.


The quilt is composed of five triangle designs, and it was so fun to start playing with the colors to see how different combinations would work in each piece. I spent many a night with rows of paper-pieced sections laid across my work table and floor, shuffling and rearranging.



When it came time to quilt it, I struggled with choosing just one thread color, so instead I chose 16! The obvious alternative, right? I quilted diagonal lines in a triangle shape roughly one inch apart, changing my thread color every three to four lines. There are 15 thread colors on the front, reflecting the range of blues, teals, purples, and pinks in the solid fabrics, and one color on the back, chosen to match the color of the hexies in the backing print.


I’m so pleased with the final quilt in all of its saturated solid glory. The movement across the blocks makes me think of a sparkly geode or shattered glass, and it has such great visual interest, keeping your eye bouncing from one section to the next. This was definitely a perfect solids project, and it was a joy to get to work with these lovely fabrics.




A huge thank you to RJR and their wonderful team for the opportunity to play with their Cotton Supreme Solids! I had a great time.


You can find me and all of my other projects over on Instagram @blueskycrafter and my blog, A Blue Sky Kind of Life.

What Shade are You with Sharon Parcel

What Shade Are You Logo 2016

When RJR Fabrics asked me to join their What Shade Are You? Challenge, I knew I would be stepping out of my comfort zone. But I took the challenge and loved every minute of it! Every week, I have enjoyed all the amazing, beautiful quilts on Instagram and here on the blog. So now it is my turn to show my creation.


The Cotton Supreme Solid colors I chose for my quilt top are:

#351 Pewter
#339 Tropicana
#352 Meadowland
#274 Riviera
#349 Aloe Verde
#338 Flamingo
#331 Pink Orchid
#244 Bubblegum
#366 Toyboat
#228 Eggnog
#244 Rio

I must tell you that I had three different quilts running around in my mind, and finally chose a pineapple block. After taking a class from Gyleen Fitzgeral and using her Pineapple Tool…I was hooked on making pineapple blocks. Gyleen had recommended that we NOT use solids to make these blocks….I said to myself…Why not? I was stepping outside my comfort zone using all solids, so why not step out a bit further?


This is what I came up with. Deciding how to break down the pineapple blocks took a bit of thinking, but I am happy with how it turned out. It depicts God’s love for me…softly, raining down on me. One of my favorite hymns is “Rain Down”…thus the name. Still debating about a pattern for this…probably paper pieced for more accuracy in matching seams.


Working with RJR’s Cotton Supreme Solids has been a real treat. The fabric is the high quality which one has come to expect from RJR and the colors are amazing! The hardest part about this challenge was when I received the color card and had to choose from the amazing colors.


I want to thank RJR for the opportunity to take part in the What Shade Are You Challenge. It has made me think and step outside the box. This has been an enjoyable journey!

You can find me on Instagram: punkydoodle53 Or on my blog: www.yellowcatquiltdesigns.com

RJR Fabrics loves #quiltdots


Since our early beginning, we’ve been dedicated to the art and craft of making the highest quality fabrics for the quilting industry. 40 years later, the time has come to better explain who we are and what we stand for. Who are we? We make fabric so our customers can make quilts for the people they love. We are a family-run company, and there is care in every step of our process: From the design and manufacturing to the workers who place the fabric lovingly inside the boxes that end up in your hands.


Our logo is a reflection of our renewed commitment to explain who we are and what we stand for. Designed with a frame that is reminiscent of the border of a quilt and painted with bold colors, the logo communicates the love and the passion we have for quilting. In addition, our tagline: #quiltwithlove speaks to the personal connection that quilting brings to all of us. Sharing this new hashtag on social media, we can all display our creative work, our personal journey as quilters, and the stories we want to tell.


To share our love of quilting with you, we have collaborated with Quilt Dots to create a tin of 9 “Quilt with Love” magnets. If you haven’t heard of Quilt Dots, they are interchangeable magnetic dots that can be worn in jewelry, key chains, bag tags, needle nannies, bookmarks and more.


Each and every Dot is made by hand in the Rocky Mountains of Northern Colorado. See the collection here http://zappydots.com/quilt-dots/designer/rjr-fabrics.html We are having a fun giveaway on Instagram for a tin and bracelet. All you have to do is share your most recent quilt with love story and project on Instagram using the hashtag #rjrquiltdotsgiveaway for a chance to win.*Giveaway ends October 25th at 4pm PST*. If you haven’t already, make sure to follow @quiltdots on Instagram and Facebook.

What Shade are You with Michelle Wilkie

What Shade Are You Logo 2016

Today, on “What Shade are You” I would like to share with you on my design journey and inspiration for my quilt “Rails”.


I am Michelle Wilkie. I can be found on Instagram @ml_wilkie or on my blog Factotum of Arts.

I was so excited to be participating in What Shade are you, and when I received my bundle in the mail a multitude of ideas came to mind. The colors are so vibrant.


The Cotton Supreme Solid colors I chose for my quilt top are:

Optical White 33
Black 34
Turks & Caicos 292
Night 280
Electric Blue 296
Anemone 251
Citron 337
Sunny Delight 326
Tangerine Dream 276
Chilli Pepper49
Grape 121
Shell pink 175
Raging Ruby 287

Additionally, I used some C+S fabrics to add some interest within the solids:

Sprinkle in Corduroy 5023-004
Dottie in Fedora 5002-006
Dottie Cousins in Natural 1915-1

I get inspired all the time from the world around us. For this quilt, it was no different. My husband is from Mannheim Germany, where we both lived for a few years before moving to the US. My inspiration for this quilt came from the Neustheim Train Junction.


The lines fascinated me. I loved the idea of using improvisation strip piecing to try and mimic these strong direction lines. It was an interesting experience bending the fabric to make the gentle curves. Some tips:

1. I started this quilt at one end and added in one direction, using strips to mark out where I was adding curves that would intersect with other lines.

2. Use a lot of starch to get the pieces to lay flat and press often.

3. Make sure you trim your threads and additional fabric as you go, especially when using white.

4. Lastly, I glue basted this quilt while it was on my design wall. I pressed each layer to fix it to the one beneath. This technique was important as it helped the top to adhere flat to the bottom layers and hold in place as it stretched out some of the puffy areas.

Here’s a close-up of the quilt top. The predominant colors are blues, yellows and white, however as I stepped back with each addition, I decided to add pops of colors. This adds balance and richness to this quilt that helped also break up the stark bands of color. You can see the use of red, purple, pinks, and orange.


For the quilting, I used Aurifil 2410, 2021, 2120, and 2783. I used irregular-spaced wavy lines that flowed with the fabric strips, to complement the colors and design of the quilt. In the binding, I also added some interest and continued the flow of color by inserting a piece of C+S print and a small blue strip to my white binding.


This was so much fun to play with such vibrant colors. I loved the overall finish that the Cotton Supreme Solids provided. Thanks to RJR fabrics for the opportunity and to you for stopping by.

Quicker by the Dozen Block of the Month

Good things come by the dozen. We are so thrilled about a block of the month collaboration with Lynette Jensen and @cottonandsteel. The ‘Quicker By The Dozen’ quilt pattern is made up of twelve blocks that use twelve different fabrics, and can be easily modified to be either a throw or a queen. Quilters can use fabrics from Lynette’s new Thimbleberries line Riversong, or they can choose a selection of Cotton+Steel Fabrics!


Lynette about the collaboration: I was so excited to collaborate with the talented designers from Cotton + Steel. Much like them, my design career and pattern business blossomed out of my passion for quilting and the community it brings. In designing the BOM, I first spoke with the C + S team about what was important to them and their market. They wanted to make sure that the project would appeal to beginner sewers, and feature simple block construction. I began with several different design layouts. It was interesting to see the designs that they gravitated toward. They loved the simplicity of the block designs, and straight forward setting in Quicker by the Dozen, and felt it was the perfect design to launch as their first block-of-the-month. Cotton + Steel chose the vertical row setting because they felt it would carry greater appeal to the modern marketplace. Quicker by the Dozen visually demonstrates how by changing fabrics, traditional block-of-the-month designs can also appeal to the modern marketplace. Whether you are traditional at heart or consider yourself a modern quilter, this BOM says it all!

Why the name Quicker by the Dozen? Lynette called the project Quicker by the Dozen because it features a dozen fabrics, and you make a dozen of each of the six different block designs. Quicker because you don’t have to rethink instructions or assembly and you can chain piece. What’s more, each block is made with just 2 fabrics, making cutting and piecing easy. The BOM can be broken down into 8 months— Months 1-6 feature the 6 different blocks, Month 7 the pieced lattice strips and Month 8 quilt assembly. Quilters will learn a variety of techniques including: how to make hourglass blocks, half square triangles, accurate ¼ inch seam allowances, pressing techniques, and much more. Instructions are provided for making the project in two different quilt sizes, throw and queen. By simply changing the block size, you can make a queen size quilt for a bed. Also by enlarging the block size to 9-inches, the project becomes even easier to piece.


For over 24 years, Lynette Jensen has thoughtfully designed and produced countless high quality patterns, traditional fabric designs, and lifestyle books that reflect her distinct upscale country style. One of the first pattern designers to partner with a fabric company to build a brand and develop a distinctive look, Lynette recognized early on the tremendous potential quiltmaking had in social networking. Her biggest accomplishment has been in her ability to connect quiltmaking to a lifestyle. Shares Lynette, “My focus has always been on making quilts become a part of peoples’ lives. Not only showing how to make quilts, but also, how to decorate and live with them.” No other designer in our industry has come close to achieving the success that Lynette has enjoyed for over 2 decades.


Lynette Jensen was the first designer ever to create a Block-of-the-Month Quilt Club designed for retail shops to help them to build a continual revenue stream with Thimbleberries fabrics and patterns. The Club program, aptly called Thimbleberries Quilt Club, captivated the quilting industry, attracting more than 1,000 retail shop members and over 300,000 consumer members in the United States alone. Thimbleberries Quilt Club was the perfect vehicle for Lynette to grow her very loyal and avid Thimbleberries fan base. It ran for more than 22 years.

In addition to the BOM, Lynette has designed 6 project extras. These projects feature a mix of different collections from RJR and Cotton + Steel. The Free PDF patterns can be accessed from the RJR and Cotton + Steel’s websites in January. Here’s a peek at the extras. Stay tuned for exciting sew alongs with popular bloggers.


Cotton + Steel is honored to be collaborating with Lynette Jensen, one of RJR Fabrics’ most prolific and successful designers, to release a Block of the Month pattern called “Quicker By The Dozen.” Lynette Jensen is a pioneer in our industry. She was one of the first to create a Block of the Month program for quilt shops. Thimbleberries changed the face of the quilt pattern industry, becoming the benchmark for easy to follow and clear quilt patterns. Lynette has always felt that she wants every person who picks up one of her patterns to be successful.


Cotton+Steel shares the belief that sewing should be accessible and inclusive. Clear instructions and well written patterns are timeless. They transcend taste and trend, and they offer a reliable resource for passing techniques on to those less experienced, regardless of anyone’s individual fabric preferences, regardless of if it’s Cotton+Steel or Thimbleberries.

Because either way, it’s the same craft, same project, just a different stash.

Quicker by the Dozen is so fun and versatile, we decided to run it a third way in fabrics from our 1930s Everything but the Kitchen Sink. Those adorable small scale thirties prints are a perfect fit. Plus those yummy pastel shades…simply irresistible. Stay tuned for the big reveal next week!


The Quicker by the Dozen BOM will be available for shops to order at Fall ’16 Quilt Market, and will be available to buy in stores starting in 2017.