Color Challenge: Yellow

Provided my little WIP “allows” it, I hope to participate in all of the Colour Blog Series challenges this year at Factotum of Arts.


This month is yellow, and the challenge is to create a mosaic of nine prints that are at least 1/3 yellow. I had never created a mosaic before, so it’s good that Michelle provided a link and instructions for the tool she uses.

“I find yellow one of the hardest prints to buy online, as it varies greatly. Is it bright yellow or mustard or ochre?? It’s also hard to find a good bright yellow print.”

This opening statement of her Yellow post is exactly my experience in purchasing yellow fabrics online. Luckily, as my color confidence grows, so does my view of the potential in a yellow fabric.

When I first started quilting (nearly 20 years ago), this was the color I most shied away from. I found it intimidating. Even once I realized that a little pop of yellow could really turn a design into something special, I still feared getting it “wrong.” I did manage to recognize, however that if I found a yellow I really loved, I should buy more of it. As a result, two particular lovelies have made appearances in quite a few quilts over the years. 😀

Good yellows are far more abundant now than they were back then (thank you, modern quilting movement), but online purchases are still a little scary. Most of the time I won’t do it unless I have seen the fabric in person. Before starting this habit, however, I wound up with several greenish yellows, mustards, and tan-golds when I thought I was buying yellow. I’m okay with it. I know I will use them eventually. In fact, I really like the fact that my yellow stash has such variety in it these days.

So, on to the challenge: One of the items on my quilting bucket list is to create a quilt based on some of Gustav Klimt’s work. Several of my favorite paintings of his have quite a lot of yellow and gold in them. However, when I selected what to my eye is the most yellow of Klimt’s paintings, the palette turned out far different from what I expected.


“Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I.” Palette generated using Moda Fabric’s palette builder. Suggested coordinating Bella solids include golden wheat, cheddar, burgundy, weathered teak, espresso, and peacoat.

Not what I needed for this challenge. So…what else? Daffodils and lemons are the first things I think of when I think of YELLOW. I thought I’d try using one of these as a jumping-off point for my collage and went a-browsing. Then I came across this seahorse fabric from Heather Ross’ upcoming Mendocino line, and lemons and daffodils went out the window. Because the ocean (and anything related to it) is my first love. And I came up with this:


1. Drift in Pink from Cloud 9; 2. Sea Friends in Corn Yellow from Premier Prints; 3. Oval Elements in Golden from Art Gallery; 4. Ripples in River from Art Gallery; 5. Sea Horses in Cream Yellow from Windham; 6. Herringbone in Yellow from Free Spirit; 7. Crosshatch in Curry from Robert Kaufman; 8. Swim Class in Yellow from Windham; 9. Village in Mustard from Andover.

All but number two can be found at Hawthorne Threads and probably at your favorite online or local fabric haunt. Cotton Candy Fabrics (formerly is a new favorite of mine. I found the starfish on but didn’t realize it’s a home dec fabric until I’d completed the mosaic. I’ve seen a few quilts on blogs that use a variety of fabric types successfully but I’ve yet to try it. This Charlie Harper fabric (availability is still spotty–it just arrived in my favorite LQS) might be a good replacement.

With that as a caveat, I would love to make a quilt from these fabrics!  Throw in some solid white and a bit more hot pink, then back it and bind it with something like this or this or this. If I weren’t trying really hard to sew from my stash and only buy what I need for finishes, I’d buy these fabrics right now. Good thing Mendocino isn’t available yet. We’ll see if I can still resist it next month when I’m able to see it in person. 😀

If you haven’t already, be sure to check out Factotum of Arts and Michelle’s Colour series. Maybe you can learn something new!

Oh, and here’s a shot of that little WIP I referred to. On a yellow quilt, no less. He’s just turned six months old and is strongly anti-nap.025

Ooooh! I just figured out that I can adjust the areas of the painting that the palette builder matches and got this:


Suggested Bella solids are golden wheat, cheddar, longhorn, harvest gold, saffron, and yellow.

Now that’s more like it. For this challenge, however, I am happy with the seahorses. I will come back to Klimt another day.



4 thoughts on “Color Challenge: Yellow

  1. I’m not such a Heather Ross fan, although in the right setting her whimsical prints are nice. I like our mutual love of hot pink and yellow :). I once saw a post praising Kona curry as the ultimate setting fabric; I’m not sure I agree that it is the ultimate, but it’s a nice challenge to move away from white or grey as the “neutral” in a quilt.

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