Denyse Schmidt on County Fair

on June 24 | in Interviews + Profiles, Products | by | with 34 Comments

We recently shared an interview about the trend towards home dec weight fabrics in many of our latest fabric collections. As we eagerly await our shipment of Denyse Schmidt’s County Fair, Denyse was kind enough to share her own thoughts on this exciting, new home-dec collection.

SMS: Your quilt-weight collections were big hits. What made you decide to do a home-dec group?Denyse Schmidt: I was interested in a fabric with a little more weight that could have wider use than the quilting-weight fabric. I also liked the idea of a wider fabric which makes it easier to use for upholstery.

SMS: Westminster calls the fabric “canvas.” How would you describe the weight and finish?Denyse: I chose the “canvas” because it’s essentially a plain weave with a little tooth. I have a lot of vintage fabrics I’ve used in my quilts over the years that are similar in weight and texture. The texture and weight remind me of some of those funky prints from the 60’s and 70’s that were used for apparel mostly, though County Fair has a softer hand.

SMS: What do you think are the advantages to sewing with these wider and heavier fabrics?Denyse: I would say the fabrics have more body; they aren’t really as heavy as some people assume. I think it makes it nicer to use for bags, pillows, hats, curtains or drapes, and anything you where you want the fabric to have more body. It is great for upholstery projects, especially where you’d use linen-type fabrics. The cotton canvas has that kind of softness/weight and ease of use, without the wrinkling or stretch that linen has. It is definitely NOT “upholstery-weight,” like the heavy, fuzzy stuff you’d find on a couch from your parent’s basement. The width is great for apparel or upholstering things, as it is 54″ wide (standard for home decor projects). That means you need less yardage for big projects, with fewer seams in large-scale cushions or upholstery. I did a large tote bag too that was one piece, since the fabric is wide. Time saving!

SMS: How was designing this group different from designing a quilt-weight collection? Denyse: It’s not really any different. In fact some of the prints are from Flea Market, re-colored and in some cases re-scaled. We have found that makers just never got enough of those fabrics, so it made sense to make them available again but to make them a little different too. The Patchwork Promenade cheater print WAS different to work on. It’s an idea I’ve wanted to do for years, but you can imagine that it is a lot more work to design and produce something that complicated. It uses 15 colors, the maximum for screens that wide. It was a challenge but so worth it! I love that is has 6 totally different “pieced” blocks. The individual blocks could be used for fast to make pillows or apron pockets, or any smaller projects. A few yards will make a entire quilt or duvet cover – with just a few simple seams! I love it for upholstery too. We all need some easy gratification now and then to keep us motivated for longer-term projects.


Thanks, Denyse! We can’t wait to start sewing with County Fair!

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34 Responses to Denyse Schmidt on County Fair

  1. Tia says:

    Great interview! I just recieved some of the Patchwork Promenade (the cheater print) And I LOVE it. It is very similar in weight and hand to Amy BUtler’s Nigella line. When I first heard canvus I thought it would be heavy and stiff, but it is wonderful! I can’t wait for your shop to get the line, I want MORE!!!


  2. Kim says:

    Beautiful! Fun! Can’t wait to get my hands on some of that goodness!!! :)K

  3. Rebecca says:

    I love this new line!

  4. Julie says:

    The fabric is fabu!!!

  5. Mika says:

    Thanks for the info about the new home dec fabrics from Denyse Schmidt. The extra info about the fabric weight is quite helpful!

  6. Carrie says:

    Oh I am so excited for her home dec line. I am getting out patterns now!

  7. Lily says:

    Holy cow, I want this fabric…and the heavier weight will be perfect for some pillows I’m itching to make!

  8. Michele says:

    Beautiful fabric! The quilt on the top is fantastic!

  9. Emy says:

    I cannot wait for the cheater cloth! It looks wonderful as upholstery and I have a rocking chair just crying to be recovered. Now to convince the husband! I love these new colors.

  10. Christina says:

    I love this new line! I can’t wait to see it in person… so fresh!

  11. orata says:

    I love the Patchwork Promenade!

  12. Sarah says:

    Wow, what a fantastic idea! Love the pre-peiced quilt fabric, and I will definitely have to check out the home decor weight, perfect for bags!

  13. Erin says:

    The cheater cloth is gorgeous!

  14. Stacey says:

    Soooooo pretty….

  15. Allison says:

    Beautiful Fabric!

  16. Amy says:

    love her fabric!

  17. kerri says:

    hot dog! she is the best and i have missed her. this stuff looks amazing. thanks, denyse!

  18. Christine says:

    Gasp! I love the colors and patterns!

  19. Mellissa says:

    Gorgeous fabric, I’m so glad that it will be on canvas this time. The colors are great, too.

  20. Laura says:

    This sounds lovely. I have had wonderful fun quilting with other “upholstery weight” fabrics- Marimekko, Anna Maria Horner, and good old IKEA fabric come to mind- and they have given a lovely drape and substance to the quilts. They were also easy to mix with lighter weight fabrics. Can’t wait to see this in person!

  21. Georgia says:

    I really love that cheater cloth. beautiful.

  22. Janis says:

    I’m anxious to see the collection. I love home dec and these colors are gorgeous! I can’t wait, I can’t wait!!!

  23. nikole says:

    just gorgeous!

  24. Amanda says:

    How lovely! Can’t wait to add some to the collection.

  25. Elaine says:

    What a great idea! I love the idea of slightly heavier material.

  26. min says:

    I’ve always liked her dots fabric, but I found it to be too thin for my liking and too see through, so I’m looking forward to this batch of thicker fabric. She’s right, people don’t tire of cute designs.

  27. jackie bateman says:

    i am so excited for this line! my first project will be a bedspread from the cheater fabric.

  28. carmell says:


  29. Jacquie says:

    Can hardly contain myself I’m so excited for this fabric to appear! So, when can we expect it?

  30. Rita says:

    when will it be available?

  31. Teresa says:

    I love that bench…can I have one on my front porch? Beautiful fabric!

  32. fiona says:

    what amazing fabric! i love that all you have to to is the side seams!instant gratification!great colours:)

  33. linda p says:

    I can’t wait to order some of that fabric. It’s so pretty!

  34. Amber says:

    I cannot wait for this fabric to come out – it’s so great!

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