Hoo’s in the Forest?

Our latest issue (March/April, No. 132) features a calming quilt by Julie Herman called Cornflower Fields on page 52. The Nature’s Notebook fabrics are from Moda Fabrics, and are available in local quilt shops.

cornflowerpic Hoos in the Forest?

Cornflower Fields by Julie Herman

A while back it was my job to find an alternate color scheme for the quilt which would create what we call a “color option.” You’ll see color options near the end of most Quiltmaker patterns, and they’re meant to expand your vision for a project by presenting a completely different look using different fabrics in the same pattern.

An interesting thing happened as I was thinking about another way to present Cornflower Fields.

cornflowercolors Hoos in the Forest?

Instead of the usual colored quilt diagram (above), I had a diagram with only the lines of the quilt, and no color (below).

cornflowerfields draft Hoos in the Forest?

I was surprised by how much this opened up the possibilities! Jumping right off the page were trees, trees and more trees. I couldn’t see anything but trees. And so began my inspiration for Hoo’s in the Forest?

A search through our fabric room, which is well-stocked with the latest fabrics from many companies, brought me to Robert Kaufman‘s “On a Whim” owl print. Perfect! I wanted the owls to take center stage, so plenty of tone-on-tones from Robert Kaufman’s basic lines such as Mixmasters Dot to Dot and Fusions fit the bill. For the border, a fun plaid with all the right colors from Flower Child framed the quilt nicely. I left off the border sections in this version, which made it a “design option.” A design option goes a few steps past a color option by changing not just the fabrics, but also how and where they are placed.

owlspic2 Hoos in the Forest?

Hoo's in the Forest?

Hoo’s in the Forest?, an abbreviated version of Cornflower Fields, is now a free online pattern. We’re excited to offer timesaving kits for Hoo’s in the Forest? as well.

I started thinking about how often I look at colored diagrams or even photos first, and I’ve decided that I’d be much more open to the infinite possibilities if I’d look at only the lines. In a future post I’ll expand on this idea and show you more examples.

About Diane Harris

I'm an editor for Quiltmaker magazine in Golden, Colorado, USA. For six years, I wrote pattern instructions, product reviews and how-to articles. Then I spent four years as QM's Interactive Editor, working to generate much of our online content. Now I'm back to patterns and how-tos, which is a great fit for me. I still love writing about quilt-related topics for Quilty Pleasures, and I always have my finger on the pulse of the quilting world. I teach a variety of quilt classes and give guild programs, too. Reach me by email: editor@quiltmaker.com.
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6 Responses to Hoo’s in the Forest?

  1. Peggy says:

    I would LOVE to know how to get B&W line drawings like this for a lot of quilts. Changing the colors makes such an amazing impact. Thanks!

  2. Tracey J says:

    You didn’t know how versatile your design was, huh Julie? :)

    Looks so good!

  3. SewcalGal says:

    Really cute design. A fun one to see in different colors too. I think this design would work in many different color pallets and be delightful in all.


  4. Uptight Seattleite says:

    I LOVE the bright one. So friendly and modern-looking.

  5. Lisa N says:

    Wow, what a difference! They are both lovely!

  6. i did wonder how the heck my yellow & blue quilt ended up like this!! but i like the story… and it really is so true how color can change everything!

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