Silhouette Appliqué

I’ve posted about my Repliqué technique a few times in the past, but I don’t think I’ve ever featured the great way it works to create silhouettes on your quilts.

The very first time I tried it was for a challenge back in the 90’s. A year ago I did a post about that challenge (please click here to read that post), and this is the quilt I made for it:

Just so you aren’t too impressed with my artistic abilities, the floral design was actually printed on the fabric, white-on-white, and I simply stitched along the foliage.

What I loved about the technique was that it used machine free-motion stitching, but I didn’t need to be perfect at it, because the stitches wouldn’t show like they do when free-motion quilting. I’ve used it for many quilts since then. Here are just a few:

Silhouette design 1
Aunt Gracie’s Farm
Brad’s Grad Quilt

One of the projects I’ve been working on recently involves silhouettes of Mike and me with our grandkids. This one is of Hanna and me when she was 2 (she just turned 13 – oh my!)

After making this one I needed to do one of Grandpa with Willy when he was 2 (now he’s almost 11 – the years do fly by).

This past year I’ve made a quilt of Trey helping grandpa stack wood (he’s 3).

And Sommer quilting with me. She was almost 6 at the time. She may be a bit older than the others, but I loved the photo.

I hang them in a grouping using my Modular Memory Quilt technique (please click here for a previous post about it).

I’m in the process of writing a book on many of the techniques I use in my Modular Memory quilts and silhouette appliqué will be covered in it. So if you’re intrigued by this technique – stay tuned :-).

If you live nearby, and would like to try your hand at creating silhouettes in fabric, please consider signing up for my February 22nd class at WCTC.

You’ll learn to repliqué the floral pattern onto a beautiful background fabric, and the exciting part is – we’ll be doing free-motion satin stitching! It’s actually fun because the stitches are so close together it’s almost impossible to do it wrong :-). You can sign up at, but please do it soon. I need a few more students for the class to run. Email me at with any questions.


and one more thing:

I’m participating in an upcoming quilt show in Whitewater, Wisconsin called:

The Art of the Quilt

and here are the details:

A quilt show will be featured at the Whitewater Arts Alliance’s Cultural Arts Center, 402 West Main Street, from February 1 to 24, Thursdays through Sundays from noon to 5 p.m.  There is a free reception, open to the public, on Sunday, February 3rd from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the CAC.  

February will find one of the Whitewater Arts Alliance’s most popular exhibits returning to the Cultural Arts Center.  “The Art of the Quilt” will feature the work of several talented area quilters.  As of this date, the WAA has commitments to share their creativity from Mary Althaus (Whitewater), Chris Kirsch (Watertown), Rita Oehrke (Palmyra), Lori Schloesser (Watertown), Michele Smith (Whitewater), and Sue Theune (Whitewater).

I’d love to invite you to the reception on Sunday, February 3rd. All the artists should be there and it promises to be a fascinating show. I will have many of my favorite quilts on display. If you can’t make the reception, but you live in Southeastern Wisconsin, please consider taking a ride out to Whitewater during the month of February to add a bit of color to your snowy winter!

1 Opinion

  • Lynn Stephens said:

    Recently finished a quilt, washed it with color grabbers and still had the colors bleed. Purchased the fabric at a reputable quilt shop and began a class using the batik fabrics the same day. My question is would you please speak on fabric preparation before beginning process and also ways of rectifying disasters such as this?
    Normally I wash all fabric before starting, besides bleeding have had unequal shrinking concerns, but when taking a class, this is not always possible.


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