Força Barça by Rosa Rojas & Olga Gonzales Angulo (Show 1912). [Image by TheQuiltShow.com]

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Understanding the Principles of Design, which include balance, contrast, movement, rhythm, emphasis, pattern/repetition as well as unity/variety is fundamental when it comes to presenting your work. As the last lesson of this major unit, we want to focus on contrast and the important role it plays in tying all of your elements together for maximum appeal. Força Barça by Rosa Rojas and Olga Gonzales Angulo (Show 1912) is an example of a quilt with maximum visual impact and would stop any quilter in their tracks.

Do you remember at the beginning of our Principles section (Lesson 30) where we used the example of a very involved cake for a special occasion as a way to illustrate the important roles that each of the various parts played in making the cake remarkable?

It is with contrast that you as the quilter can bring life to your work. It is the last element in the cake assembly process. Contrast is the difference between all of the elements within the entire design. Each part of the cake (e.g. blueberry sauce, lemon curd, mascarpone filling, the layers of cake) is unique and interesting, but when combined, helps to bring the finished cake to a whole new level of enjoyment for those who receive a slice at the party.

Creating contrast can be achieved in a number of ways including:
Light vs. Dark
Warm vs. Cool
Black vs. White
Soft vs. Detailed
Large vs. Small
Text Size / Font

Let's say you want to design a quilt featuring blue circles. But find that the design is not that interesting in and of itself.






How about using just two circles, with one being considerably larger than the other?






How about a bit of texture (Lesson 4) [with quilting or fabric choice] to make the circles stand out from the background?






Color can certainly make a huge difference. But if the colors are of the same value (Lesson 19) and, as in this example, direct opposites on the color wheel, the combination can be jarring to the eyes. This might not be the direction you want to go, unless you want to create that bit of unease for the viewer.





Colors that are farther apart on the value scale within a design present a calm and quiet message.





If both elements (background and circles) are in the same color family and closely located on the value scale (Lesson 19), there is still contrast. But the message, again, is of a quiet and calm nature.





Let's look at some examples of quilts featuring various forms of contrast:








Text / Font:


Click here for more topics related to The Art of Quilt Design program


TQS continues its feature of quilts from the exhibit Log Cabin Today! Presented by Brigitte Morgenroth, a series of log cabin quilts created by Brigitte Morgenroth that were featured at the Houston International Quilt Festival in 2015. The exhibit is described as:

"Twenty-five years ago, Brigitte Morgenroth discovered quilting when she lived in Bophuthatswana (a former homeland in South Africa) and Libya. She creates modern and interesting Log Cabin quilts, with her choice of expressive colors and material, combined in different variations and arrangements: Log Cabin with a twist, triangular, undulating, or pineapple. Silk and polyester satin are her favorite materials, sometimes combined with patterned cotton. Mainly, she sews large quilts and sometimes smaller, more sophisticated ones. All of her quilts are hand-quilted. She gives this old pattern a modern, interesting character."

Please enjoy Brigitte's tenth quilt from the exhibition.

Title of Quilt: Berlin

Quilter's Name: Brigitte Morgenroth

Photos by John Anderson


When Sue Colozzi and her husband visited Ischia, an island near Naples, they came across the town of Sant' Angelo. It was at that moment Sue knew she had to commemorate her visit by making a quilt of it. Enjoy the view of Sant' Angelo - Wish I Was There.

Sant' Angelo - Wish I Was There by Sue Colozzi of Reading, Massachusetts was featured in the Pictorial category at Houston 2019.


It's now 3 weeks until Quilters Take a Moment and the Quilt Alliance would like to let you know more about their fundraiser for this year and how to get your tickets to the show.

From the Quilt Alliance:

"This year, our annual fundraiser has moved online, but not out of reach. This historic year requires a unique approach and we have a whole world of content planned for you. Four hours of live talks, interviews, panel discussions (recorded, for you to listen to on your own time if you prefer), an exquisite exhibition, Known & Unknown, demos, sponsor messages, door prizes, and a time to laugh, sway and share quilts together. Let's do this--let's dance! Thank you to Meg Cox, Earamichia Brown, Clark Eselgroth, and David Bowie for helping us make this promo."

Click here to go to website.
Click here to register.



While poking around in our archives we found these three adorable Sunbonnet Sues. They were winners in a contest featured in The Quilt Life magazine back in 2012.

Enjoy !


Ricky, Come See What I Found by sforster395



Sunbonnet Sue and Friend by PatHobbs


Patriotic Sue by clhughey


Alex continues her tours of fun quilting studios and sewing spaces. This class is scheduled to see the studios and ideas of Libby Lehman and Ricky Tims.

The LIVE starts Friday, September 4, 2020,  at 10am PDT, 1pm EDT, and 6 pm London. All classes are recorded so they can be viewed later.


No matter which puzzle you usually do...

First do the 35 non-rotating and let people know your time in the comments. Just for fun & interest. 


All quilts mean something to the quilter's who make them, but this one was especially significant to Sujata. Mom And I was mostly stitched while Sujata was sitting next to her mom and talking to her after she had experienced a stroke. To her, it represents that life needs to still go on when the going gets tough.

You can learn from Sujata in Show 2705.

MomAndIBySujataShah - 35 Pieces Non-Rotating

MomAndIBySujataShah - 99 Pieces Non-Rotating

MomAndIBySujataShah - 300 Pieces Non-Rotating

MomAndIBySujataShah - 35 Pieces Rotating

MomAndIBySujataShah - 99 Pieces Rotating

MomAndIBySujataShah - 300 Pieces Rotating

Original Photo: Kristin Goedert


All quilts mean something to the quilter's who make them, but this one was especially significant to Sujata. Mom And I was mostly stitched while Sujata was sitting next to her mom and talking to her after she had experienced a stroke. To her, it represents that life needs to still go on when the going gets tough.

Learn from Sujata in Show 2705.

Original Photo: Kristin Goedert


We continue our selection of quilts exhibited in 2019 at the Houston International Quilt Festival as part of their 45th Anniversary, the Sapphire Anniversary. The Sapphire Celebration exhibit is described as:

"Quilters have long used the color blue to symbolize trust, loyalty, wisdom, confidence, intelligence, faith, truth, and heaven. Sapphire is also the chosen gem to celebrate 45th anniversaries—which International Quilt Festival is doing this year (2019)! These new and antique blue and white quilts will be suspended from the ceiling in a spectacular and unforgettable display."

To be a part of the exhibit, quilts had to fit the following criteria:

  • Entries may be Traditional, Modern or Art.
  • Entries must have been made between 1974 and 2019.
  • The minimum size is 50” x 50”

Please enjoy the twenty-ninth quilt from the exhibition by an Unknown Maker.

Title of Quilt: Wild Goose Chase W/ Bleeding Heart Border

Quilter's Name: Unknown Maker


We return to the home of Alex Anderson and TQS is visted by not one, not two, but three fabulous guests! Jennifer Sampou, a fabric designer for more than twenty years, discusses how she uses modern technology to create digitized ombre fabric. Then, Julie Silber and Joe Cunningham bring their considerable knowledge of vintage and antique quilts into play as they discuss how to look at an older quilt for inspiration in creating a Modern quilt.

Watch Jennifer, Joe, and Julie in Show 2706, when it debuts Sunday, September 6, 2020.

Top 10 Reasons to Join the Quilt Show!

(Click on the box next to the YouTube logo to enlarge the screen.)

Learn about
Apliquick appliqué tools!

Watch Show 1912
with Rosa Rojas (free!)

Apliquick Rods


Apliquick - 3 Holes Microserrated Scissors


Apliquick Ergonomic Tweezers