Introductions: Day #2
A Little Tour

Introduction: Day #3

Today's Introduction: Saltwater Taffy

It's always fascinating to me how the quilt and pattern industry goes in such clear and identifiable waves or trends. A few designers get inspired by something, then a few more and very soon there is an explosion of a colors or designs or patterns featuring said trend. Its unmistakeable and it happens like clockwork. I know that this is the way it is in most artistic or creative industries, but since I am most connected to this one, it is always so interesting for me to watch a "trend" spread into so many different venues and in so many different interpretations. I love watching it happen and I love being a part of it... especially when I am at the beginning of the inspiration LOL!



...Saltwater Taffy done out of Fresh Cottons with a tone one tone seafoam print pieced border and a seafoam medallion print as the outer border.

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[warning... tangent coming]


Now as a designer I do have to add that sometimes it is indeed a trend, in fact often it is a trend, something that catches on that everyone wants to be a part of. Sometimes it is separate cases of similar inspiration, and sometimes it is just plain plagiarism or in the case of our industry, the process known as "knocking off" of someone else's idea, design or product. In textiles and product design and more recently in pattern design, it happens a lot especially with the amazing access to design that everyone has via the internet. More than you would probably care to know. More than many people are willing to admit and recently a lot more than it used to... It is the part of the "trend" process that makes me sad or disillusioned, depending on the situation. Okay, done with my tangent. Just had to get that in there and out.  

[tangent done]

• • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Back to introductions.... the reason I started talking about trends in the first place is that we have been having a huge resurgence of hexagon and pinwheel designs over the last year or so. HUGE! They are everywhere in every kind of size and style. There is something about them that translates so well to both traditional and contemporary designs. And they are a lot of fun to make!



... made with Fresh Cottons. Closer up to show blocks & quilting.



For me, as with most things, I have shied away from some of these in the past because I hadn't yet figured out a simple way of doing the pattern without templates. For those of you who know me, you'll know that I am always on the hunt to recreate traditional blocks and designs into methods that we can use today without a lot of tedious templates, etc. Well we have done that with hexagons here, in a pattern that we released several Markets ago. Then I did another version here in this book, with the same hexagon method. Love those hexies in any form!

And now we are moving on to these spinning pinwheels [there are many traditional names for this block but heck if I can remember any of them right now when I need to!]. LOVE them.. now that I have figured out a way to make them out of a straightforward pinwheel and a few well placed trims. I think you might love this method once you use it! 

In the words of one of my seamstresses, who hates working with any kind of bias pieces, "Wow, I like this one enough to make it again for myself even after I am done making the sample for you!" That's high praise coming from Miss Cheryl I tell ya!


... flat shot of the same Fresh Cottons quilt.



... a tiny close-up because these are my favorite kinds of shots to take right now. Something so alive about them. Gives you an idea of what it would feel like to cuddle up with the quilt doesn't it?


... same quilt, different outer border. A bit more feminine perhaps.



.... made with Breakfast at Tiffany's collection with a slightly different style of border. Love the way the coral polka dots frame and set off this version!


... my artsy fartsy close-up shot of the same Breakfast at Tiffany's quilt.


... a better close-up of the borders sections.


... a flat shot of the Breakfast at Tiffany's version.



Name: Saltwater Taffy


Pieced by: Cheryl Hadley and Sherri McConnell

Size: 55 1/2" x 66 or 53 1/2 x 64 for the one with the coral dot borders

Fabrics Collections: Either Fresh Cottons or Breakfast at Tiffany's depending on which quilt & version you are looking at. 

Fabrics Used: Quilt starts with nothing else but (2) charm packs and some background yardage.

To look at precise yardage requirements look here under "VIEW LARGER IMAGE".


Talk to you soon.







Such a cute pattern! I'd love to make this one!

Love this quilt...cutting into my Fresh Cotton bundle today to make one!

I love this pattern! All of the quilts look wonderful but I especially love the last one that uses the Breakfast at Tiffany's collection . . . those polka dots call my name! :)

I love this pattern and I especially love it in Breakfast at Tiffany's!

I love this design... esp in the 'Breakfast at Tiffany's'
can't wait to get some fro me to work with
Hugs Dawn x x

Ahhh. So beautiful! What a fun design. I have never done one like that before, but you've made me want to go out and buy the pattern. And, your colors are pretty, yet still very fun. I love the quilts with the seafoam border and the polka dot borders the best. Thanks for sharing all of the lovely pictures!

Confession...I have been a bit obsessed with Saltwater Taffy since I saw it in a picture of your market booth (the fresh cotton version). I kept squinting my eyes trying to figure out which line you used and which new pattern, what it was called, how much fabric I would need.... phew! My head hurts. : ) Today you've answered all my questions. Thank you!!! I saw a similar pattern in a magazine recently with *templates*. Ugh. I remembered from Alden, you don't like templates! I was really hoping you found a way around them with this pattern. You did! Oh you clever girl. I am so excited to dig in.

You are such a talent. I am always so impressed with your patterns. I loved making jelly girl. Seriously one of my all time favorites. And I was doing the same thing Adrianne was doing. I love the colors of the fresh cotton version. But I am actually going to use my mill house inn fabric for this one. Love it! And thanks for your creativity. Your dandelion girl fabric came out around the time I started down the road of quilting. It was love at first sight. :) Thanks!

I just love everything you do. These quilts are gorgeous! Looking forward to trying my hand at this one.

Beautiful--the polka dots were speaking to me. The internet has definite pluses and minuses. The exposure is wonderful and 99% of the people are good. I'll never understand the need to copy others. Where is the satisfaction in that?

I completely understand where you are coming from, but - there are times, when two people on opposite sides of the world, or even opposite sides of the city - look at a traditional quilt pattern and come up with the same non-traditional way to make it. THere are so many quilters doing very much the same thing that it is conceivable, and it's happened to me a few times. The first time I was really taken aback - I thought for sure I had an original idea and there it was, something almost identical, in a magazine from Australia! And it was then I realized what a big quilting world I am part of. Having said that, it's what you do with your ideas that makes all the difference in making them unique!

Re: TypePad: [Fresh Figs] Jillayne submitted a comment on Introduction: Day #3

Absolutely. Like I said, sometimes it is just a case of the same inspiration at the same time. Thanks for sharing your perspective.

Re: TypePad: [Fresh Figs] Stephanie submitted a comment on Introduction: Day #3

Me neither! I love the polka dots too... Ive always gone for smaller ones. But these big ones are really making me happy!

Thanks for your amazing new designs. This one might just be my new favorite. Can't wait to see how you did it!
And thanks so much for sharing a bit of your insights about our industry. We all know its going on but most of us don't want to talk about it out loud!

Thank you.

I just love your patterns and fabrics and I hate templates. I just received your latest book and can hardly wait to find time to just sit and drool over it. Thanks again for your beautiful designs

This is so beautiful Joanna, I love the design and fabrics!! Love your little bags too, just adorable (like you in your video).

Come on!!! This is a blantant copy of another wonderful designer that you CLEARLY stole from. Shame on you.

Re: TypePad: [Fresh Figs] Eli submitted a comment on Introduction: Day #3

If you would like to share what you are concerned about, we would be happy to respond.

If you are interested, this is actually a classic block that has been in the public domain since the early part of the century and has been made dozens of times in dozens of different ways. The way that we created the block and set the outer border of the pattern is our unique design and has never been done as far as we are aware. It is a very unique method that we came up with. Its great and you should check it out!

Happy Quilting,


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