Greetje Hein – Architecture – I love Holland

Holland has a rich history in architecture. Especially the canal houses in Amsterdam are very famous for their different roof shapes.

The roof shapes are my inspiration for this “architecture” theme.

I painted “rectangles” on a white fabric. I used watercolor paint on wet fabric. For the different roof shapes I made a few stencils from freezer paper. These stencils were ironed on top of the rectangles. With paintsticks I colored the roof shapes on the fabric. To create houses I stitched just the outlines of each house. Because the watercolor look I did not want the houses look realistic, I just “sketched” them. I also quilted some windows and doors. All the quilting is free motion. Some windows I colored with inktense pencils.



close up view

close up vieuw architecture

painted fabric

painted fabric


  1. carolinehiggs

    I really like this, a stunning result.

  2. joanbrailsford

    I recognized the shapes and styles of the Amsterdam houses immediately, and I really like the way you have treated the shapes. The watercolour effect is an innovative way to approach this, and works very well.

  3. Oh, I really like this! The simplicity of style and technique, and the colour, and the way you have ‘sketched’ the houses with your needle and thread. Terrific!

  4. When I looked at the reveal this morning, I knew immediately it was yours ! there is something unrealistic in the composition : how the colours and shapes are sketched and the blurred effect of the watercolour.

  5. beautiful and like Chantal I recognised this as your work. The simplistic technique of watercolour and then stitching is a WOW. Bravo

  6. English quilter

    A wonderful soft portrayal of the tall, skinny Amsterdam houses. Reminds me of a misty Amsterdam morning. I love the effect of the watercolor paints contrasted with the stronger roof lines.

  7. When I was a young child we lived in New York, where the first local history was about a place called “New Amsterdam.” We learned about the gabled houses on what is now Manhattan and in Holland. I was fascinated. Your quilt brings it all back. The piece is lovely even without that association; I love the watercolor effect, and the dreaminess.


    A beautiful way of looking at the Amsterdam architecture. My roots lay there, I am born and raised in Amsterdam and still love to be in the city as a tourist. You catch the skyline in simple lines and give it a fairy like look. Nice work.

  9. I LOVE the colors and the simple design of the canal houses and since I have seen it in real I know that the picture doesn’t even do justice. It is definitely a very beautiful piece of work.

  10. I like the simplicity of the design and the way you achieved it. Very evocative of the beautiful houses in Amsterdam.

  11. Simple effective and just stunning

  12. Yes, I recognised the shape of the houses too. I love the simplicity and colouring of the houses.

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