Tuesday, October 11, 2016

I Like My Blocks Big and My Palette Subdued

I’m a few dozen projects into my quilt-making career, and I’m still trying to figure out what my style is, what kind of quilts I like to make and design. I know that I gravitate toward quilts that straddle the line between modern and traditional. I also like lots of white. (I recently took a class with Timna Tarr and, when asked what my favorite color was, responded “Kona Snow.” True story.) And I really, really like my blocks and overall quilt designs big.

Here are three examples from the From Bolt to Beauty archives ...

* My Double-Sided Diamond Quilt features 18-inch diamonds.

* Bring On the Dancing Horses boasts even bigger diamonds.

* Obsession, designed by Laura Jane Taylor, is composed of four 40-inch blocks.

Longtime readers may remember my big geese from last year. I designed a quilt of gigantic triangles, some as long as 40 inches. The scrappy look I was striving for didn’t work in such dimensions, however, and I shelved the project.





But I couldn’t get the design out of my head. At the heart of it, this quilt is about shapes, so I set aside prints and color and mocked the design up in grays to emphasize these triangles and their size.



I’m halfway through piecing this project, and it’s been hard to stick with the gray palette. I cut up some precious Catnap prints to insert some color and character into the mix, but it didn’t work. I think I’ll forge ahead with Kona Shadow and Kona Pewter, and complete piecing the blocks in grays before I try to tweak anything again.


What does the subdued gray palette say to you? Do you find it serene (as Kim has been trying to convince me) or boring?!

Linking up to Let’s Bee Social and Needle and Thread Thursday ...

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19 comments:

  1. I love the double sided diamond. My favorite color is krona snow too.

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  2. I love this in grey and white! Maybe with just one single goose in that magenta color. It is beautiful.

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  3. A gray palette to me says "quiet, rest, relax...". It is calm and subdued but also really chic. On the flip side of what I think are strong positives that I just listed... I also had a slight "how is that going to stay clean" moment. :) But the big blocks are a huge yes!

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  4. Grey and white is pretty... when other people do it. Though I just finished a mostly gray baby quilt (+rainbow additions), so maybe I'm catching up? Usually it's just bright, bright, bright, around here. :D

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  5. I tried big scrappy flying geese last year too and I also abandoned them. I may cut them up at some point and use them somehow.

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  6. I like gray and white together. I think the look is modern and fresh and clean. But I'm also loving that little pop of dark pink up there, so maybe just one little pop of something somewhere? I love an element of surprise in a quilt, and a smidgen of color in an otherwise serene color palette might be just the thing to calm your nerves. :)

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  7. I am a huge fan of gray. I think it looks anything BUT boring! You'll be happy you used that Catnap print. :) It's great that it's featured so nicely here. Maybe put your scrappy geese on the back?

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  8. Wow, those are some big blocks! I like the gray and snow together. It comes across as "soft" to me. I think this would be a great way to showcase some interesting quilting and texture.

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    1. I forgot to mention that I love that pop of raspberry. Just a few triangles in a bright solid would visually interesting as well.

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  9. The greys will make a perfect bed quilt that will be timeless. That is my home style, but my quilting style is completely different. I agree with finding a quilt voice, it's hard and ever evolving. Although the pops of color is very appealing. I love the layout so keep going!!!!

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  10. The greys will be calming, and are a wonderful neutral. And, Kona snow is also my favorite in the white palette. After all, who doesn't love Kona solids? Your style of quilting is very refreshing and modern.

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  11. You see quilts in neutrals along the cream/off white line and they are beautiful. So why not in the gray line. I like your quilt!!

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  12. Oh dear. I now have an ear worm for the rest of the day. 'I like big blocks and I cannot lie. You other sewers can't deny.' (And I am not a fan of the song!) I love your giant geese idea, however!

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  13. I love to work with grey and I think your combination with white is great. I would keep some small touches of bright colour though.

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  14. I like how you are so willing to play around with designs. I'm more apt to follow a pattern, but I have stepped outside my comfort zone lately and made some original creations. PS: I vote for serene. Not boring.

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  15. I love over-sized blocks too. I like how your quilt is developing with the gray and white with pops of color and print.

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  16. I need to start working with bigger blocks. And there's nothing wrong with grey.

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  17. The great thing about quilting is that what you like and design now doesn't have to be what you like and design later...it's all good! Embrace your subdued palette. I love the different geese sizes with the limited colors, it works.

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  18. I really like the muted palette with the pewter and can visualise this lovely and big quilt - this really works for me and lately I've been all rainbow brights - might be time for a change!

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