Search This Blog


Backing Day is Monday, May 31st!

Here's a reminder from your friendly neighborhood Cotton Patch that Backing Day is this Monday, May 31st! 

If you're new here and don't know what Backing Day is...

Bring in your finished quilt tops (100% complete, no more borders to add, done) on the last day of the month and receive 25% off your backing of choice, even Clearance!

The usual rules apply:

  • If the last day of the month falls on a Sunday when we're closed, then Backing Day is the day before (Saturday). 
  • Discount valid on single-fabric backings only.  Sorry, this is not valid on several cuts of different fabrics for a pieced backing.  
  • Sale prices not combinable with any other offer (this includes deals from Five Stars, redeeming points, and coupons)
  • Sale prices good in-store only on the sale day and limited to stock on-hand. 
We can't wait to see what you've created - see you on the 31st!


Color Theory, the Series! Part VI: Shades


I couldn't resist!  Who doesn't love a good Maggie Smith meme?  And indeed...the SHADE of it all.  Because this week is all about Shades.  

We've finally made it to the chocolatey center of the Tootsie Roll Pop that is our trusty Color Wheel:

Now... you may have already guessed...but Shades are Hues plus Black.  We often use the word "shade" colloquially to denote the different colors within a color (shades of pink, shades of blue, etc.) that aren't necessarily dark, light, or mid-tone, but I'll be the party pooper to say that's not technically correct.  But then again, since when are colloquialisms technically correct?  But we're talking about Color Theory here, not linguistics, so here a Shade is simply the dark versions of a color. 

Just like with Tones, because black is multi-colored, the effect can be wide ranging, from intensifying the color to a dark, rich color (for example, mixing red with a red-based black), or to counteract the warmness/coolness of it (for example, mixing a red with a green based black). Shades can range from just slightly darker than mid-tone, to almost black, depending on how much black is mixed with the original color. 

hades are great for pairing with brighter colors to make them pop, or pairing with other shades to create a sense of depth and richness. They work very well in masculine quilts and contemporary quilts, and are prevalent in reproductions and Primitives.  

Here's a gorgeous example of Shades and Tones together.  There's nothing boring about this quilt even though it's in a range of Shades - the colors are just beautifully rich. 

Have you made a quilt with all shades?  Would you ever consider it?  Post your response in the comments below!


Introducing the Secret Stash Program! FAQs

What is the Secret Stash Program?

  • A subscription box for any quilter who wants to build and diversify their stash, or branch out and try some new and different fabric styles they might not check out on their own! 
  • Choose your own adventure from Solids, Blenders, Batiks, or Prints
  • Receive a Secret Stash Box for $30 every month containing a minimum of four specially curated Fat Quarters from high quality manufacturers (including but not limited to: Benartex, Art Gallery, Clothworks, In the Beginning, Henry Glass, and more), a Pattern, and a Wild Card item following that month’s theme for your chosen category (Solids, Blenders, Batiks, or Prints)

 How do I join?
Call the shop at 503-463-1880 or stop by to sign up.  Choose from Solids, Blenders, Batiks, or Prints for your subscription.  Sign up is free; charges start the following month with your first box.  Shipping address and credit card authorization required at time of sign up.

How much is the subscription?
It is $30 per month for one calendar year from the first box you receive.  Shipping is included in the monthly fee. 

Can I pay for the whole year at once?
No, this is a pay-per-month program only.  We understand the convenience of a lump sum payment, but since we are a small operation, keeping the payment method and schedule uniform between all participants makes managing payments as simple and trackable as possible. 

What are the fabric category options?
Solids, Blenders, Batiks, or Prints

What do I get in each box?
You will receive a minimum of five specially curated Fat Quarters from high quality manufacturers, a pattern, a Wild Card item following that month’s theme for your chosen category.  Every box’s retail value is greater than the monthly charge.  You will also receive limited time deals and discounts for use in-store and online that are exclusive to this program!

Can I sign up for more than one box?
Absolutely!  Each box is $30 per month. 

What is the value of each box?
Each box has a retail value greater than the monthly charge but varies depending on the items included.    

How long is the subscription?
One calendar year from your first box.

Why is a credit card and shipping address required at sign up?
This is a pay-per-month, mail order program.  This information is required to be able to charge and ship your box to you on the 15th of every month, or the following business day should the 15th fall on a Sunday when the shop is closed. 

How does The Cotton Patch protect my card and mailing information?
Your information is kept in a locked filing cabinet, and not shared with anyone.  It is used solely for your monthly subscription charge and will never be used for any other reason.  If you choose to cancel, or not renew at the end of the subscription period, your information will be returned to you to dispose of as you see fit – it will in no way be retained by the shop. 

What if my card on file cannot be charged?
You will be notified by phone that the monthly charge did not go through; it is up to you to call or come in to provide updated payment information.  Your subscription will be paused, and you will not receive that month’s box or any subsequent boxes until new payment information is provided. 

I missed a box or two because my payment information needed to be updated – can I still receive the boxes I missed?
You will still be charged for the month your payment information did not go through, but if subsequent months were missed for this reason, you will not be able to retroactively receive those months as a box was not prepared for you for the months there was no payment information.  Your subscription will resume on the month new payment information was received. 

When do I get my box?
We use USPS Standard Flat Rate shipping and ship on the 15th of the month (or the next business day should the 15th fall on a Sunday when the shop is closed).  Three to five business days is typical, but shipping times may vary based on where you live in proximity to the shop (in state versus out of state) and the time of year (anticipate shipping delays during the holiday season). 

Can I track the shipment?
We will retain the tracking number for the shipment in our records – please give us a call if you’d like the tracking number.

Is the secret stash box eligible for points or rewards?
You will earn points on your monthly charge, but rewards are not redeemable on programs per our normal in-store policy on points and rewards redemptions. 

Can I pick up my secret stash box in-store?
No, this is a mail order program only.  We understand it may be very easy to pop in and pick up, but we are a small operation and this keeps the program streamlined and easy to manage. 

I don’t like the box I received this month – can I return it?
Part of the fun of the Secret Stash Program is branching out and getting fabrics you may not have considered before, but with that fun comes risk – you may not always like every single piece you get.  Monthly boxes are final sales and non-refundable once charged and shipped; they contain pre-cut fabrics and copyrighted patterns, which per our normal in-store Return Policy are non-returnable items unless physically damaged or defective.   Check out our blog post “Tips for Using Hard-to-Use Fabrics” for ideas on what to do with cuts you don’t like as much, consider a gifting to or swapping with a friend, or donating to your local guild.

Can I exchange or return a single item from the box that I don’t like or already own?
No; the Secret Stash Box is not customizable in that way.  Additionally, the box contains item that per our normal in-store Return Policy are non-returnable.  Exchanges are only honored if an item is damaged or defective at the discretion of the shop.  Check out our blog post “Tips for Using Hard-to-Use Fabrics” for ideas on what to do with cuts you don’t like as much, consider a gifting to or swapping with a friend, or donating to your local guild.

An item I received is damaged or defective – how can I get it replaced?
Contact the shop by email at and let us know – please include a picture of the damaged or defective item.  The damaged/defective item will be exchanged for a new version of the same item (if available) or reasonable substitution at the shop’s discretion free of charge and shipped to your address on file. 

Can I change my fabric choice(s)?
Fabric choices can be changed on a quarterly basis.  We will remind you of this option every quarter, however, it is up to you to call us and notify us that you want to change.  We’re a small operation and this keeps it simple to keep track of everyone’s choices. 

How do I renew my subscription?
You will receive a reminder in your Secret Stash Box on the month before your subscription is up.  Call the shop or stop by in person to renew.  Your subscription will NOT automatically renew if you don’t contact us for renewal. 

How do I cancel my subscription?
You may cancel your subscription at any time; if you cancel before the 15th of the month, the cancellation will be effective that same month.  If you cancel after the month’s boxes have been charged and shipped, the cancellation will be effective for the following month. 

Sign-ups for the Secret Stash Program are open NOW!  The first boxes will go out in July 2021!


Color Theory, the Series! Part V: Tones

 It's time to revist our handy dandy Color Wheel, and this time, we're looking at the third ring - Tones! (Not ringtones...those are different 😂  I'll show myself out.)

Not that the graphic isn't a total spoiler, but uh, Tones are the Hue plus Grey.  Not to wax philosophical here, but to me, grey is not a tone.  It's white and black, which depending on which was added to which, makes it either a Tint or a Shade but Shades are for next time!  

There are just about endless variations of grey because of the different blacks the white could get mixed with.  This means Tones actually have a deceptively broad range of color and warmth/coolness.  Depending on who you talk to, this is where you'll find your Neutrals too:

Again, the same Warm/Cool, Analogous/Complementary (WC/AC Rules henceforth) apply to Tones as well. Tones make for great additions to masculine quilts, and are extremely useful in creating shadow and depth for landscape quilts. They also offset bright colors very well, and give those colors a "glowing" effect. Tones are also prevalent in Primitives and reproduction style quilts as they're more muted than their counterparts.  

This is a good example of a quilt featuring Tones - excluding the gold, see how the purples and peaches are greyed down, even the darker pieces?

How do you like to use Tones - are they your neutrals, or do you like them as the focus?  Share your preferences in the comments below!