Oh, how we all love fabric! You know the feeling when you walk into any quilt shop and your breath is taken away from the colors in the fabric display? Oh my! Sometimes, I literally have to stand there and just soak it all in.
Well, that is how I felt when my Block of the Month fabrics arrived from Bluprint. The Boundless Blenders Aura collection took my breath away. That is no exaggeration! I remember standing in my kitchen when I opened the box, clearing my counter top off so I could display all the gorgeous fabrics. It was like I got a “high” from it. I took pictures and sent an email to my editor Linda thanking her for choosing me! I was so excited.
You know what? Fabric choice goes a little further than just choosing a few colors and off we go a-quilting.
We have to study the fabrics, their values, hues and how they complement each other. There’s also the “feeling” you get when you look at a quilt and its colors. Do you feel excited? Do you want to touch the quilt because you get an amazing vibe? Do you want to grab the quilt and wrap it around you to feel the security, the love that it exudes; does the quilt suggest playfulness, comfort?
Quilts do that, you know, and it’s because of the colors you choose. This brings me to the fabric color I chose for the background of the quilt: taupe. I realize that some of you would have chosen a different color for the background — for example white, gray or black. I chose taupe because of the softness it brought to the quilt. Taupe allowed the other colors to shine, but not an “in your face” kind of shine. It just kind of rests in the background.
Let’s take a look at the fabric colors in the Broadway Star block
To create a shadow-like effect, I chose a dark shade and a medium shade for the purple and red units. For the blue and green, I chose a medium shade and went to a light shade.
The reason behind my choice is I wanted your eye to move around the block so that you see all the colors. And they work well in their placement, having the Comet block and the lone star surrounding it.
If I had chosen the same blues that are in the Lone Star block, then the Broadway Star would blend; it would not stand out. I could have easily chosen to make blue and green units with dark and medium fabrics, but I wanted to mix it up to give the “wow” factor, to keep the eye moving.
What about the Marquis Diamond block?
I used purple and green. Both the purple and the green are the darker tones of fabric. I love purple and green together, don’t you?
When looking at the Marquis Diamond, what stands out? Is it the purple diamond or the green squares? Did you actually see two different sized green squares, or did you just see the larger green square and not the smaller ones resting in the corner? By choosing the same fabric color for both squares, they are not competing with each other. Nor are they competing with the purple diamonds.
Now, let’s look at the Aura Star block
When you first saw that block, did you think it was paper pieced? I bet you did! I was determined to not paper piece this block. Aren’t you happy I chose another method?! I know I am!
When you look at the Aura Star, what do you see? Do you see a navy blue star coming out from behind the red star? Is that not the coolest?! I chose the two dark colors and the taupe background so that you would have that very effect.
If I had chosen to only use the blue fabrics — navy, boys rule blue and periwinkle — the Aura Star would not have the “wow” factor. It would blend with the surrounding Lone Star and Comet blocks.
Instead I used the deep, bright red to separate the navy and periwinkle blues, which draws your eye right to the block. It allows the Aura Star block to say, “Hey! Look at me!” Now, the Aura Star block does not blend with its surroundings.
I hope you are enjoying learning how to piece these new blocks, playing with the variety of colors and are looking forward to finishing the quilt.
This journey, this adventure, is wonderful — learning new techniques, piecing somewhat traditional blocks with just that little twist. Till we meet again, keep on quilting!