Colors of Summer

When you think of summer, what colors do you see?

That was our assignment for May in the do.Good Stitches bee.  Make two blocks with this tutorial.  Choose summer colors.

Now that is what I call fun!  I really enjoyed picking the fabrics for these blocks.

And it will be great seeing all these blocks together with each person's color impressions all in one quilt.

Are there "official" summer colors out there somewhere?  What are the colors that sing summer to you?

Getting the Baskets Out of My System

Even after many baskets, I still had the itch to make a few more...

I used the "girly" half of the Denyse Schmidt collection Picnic and Fairgrounds.  I added in some more neutrals and solids and ended up with a VERY different color palette for me.

I always find my tastes warring between a softer vintage look, and a bright modern look.  But I can be both, right?!  It's more fun that way!

And some Bliss Flannel on the back.  Nothing like some cozy flannel to finish off a baby quilt.

Squares: The Girl Version

I started with the Heather Ross Princess fabric in dark plum.  I added the mustard yellows, bright pinks, and grassy greens.  This combo sat on my shelf for a few months, waiting for it's moment in the spotlight.

Then I decided to make a girl quilt from simple squares and decided to use this stack.  Once again, my original choices had only half the fabrics you see here.  Somewhere along the way, I decided to add aqua to the color scheme.  And then I decided that most of the fabrics were too much in the mid-value range.

Technical terms like values and intensity, rarely enter my head when choosing fabrics.  I just put together what I like, and don't analyze why it does or doesn't work.  But lately I've been thinking a bit about values.  Putting it very simply for me, that would be the light, medium or darkness of the fabrics.

Take a black and white photo and you'll see the true "value" of each fabric.

As you can see, a majority of these blocks blend together in their mid-value loveliness.  I am not promoting any type of "rule" here, since I'm a firm believer in making things you love, not things that are "right".

It's just some interesting observations, since I've been thinking a bit more about this.  If you want your quilt to "sparkle" or certain aspects of the design to stand out, then definitely think about using contrasting values.

An interesting read about values here: (Scroll part way down to find the section titled "Values".  And check out the computer generated diagram of the two quilts.  Doesn't the one on the right just "sparkle" a bit?)

And a bit more about values here.

Anyways, whether this quilt has the right balance of values, or not, I'm rather in love with these colors right now.

Thoughts on Squares

When I make a quilt like this, with it's simple squares, the fun is all about fabric choices.  I love this simple and timeless design.  You're never going to have a flop with this pattern!

And sometimes, especially for a baby quilt, you don't want some intricate, amazing, piecing.  You just want something snuggly and homemade.

I had a lot of fun picking out the fabrics for this one.  I'm trying to talk about the process of this quilt which all took place at least a month ago, so I forget a few things... I somehow can't remember which were the fabrics I started with on this one, but I usually start out with about 5 or 6 fabrics, and think maybe this time I'll stick with less and make it more planned and less scrappy.  But I usually throw caution to the wind and start adding a bunch more fabrics.

I read once, I think it was on Anna Maria Horner's blog about the concept of choosing colors by dismissing the color or colors that you were NOT using.  I didn't think about that as I was pulling out fabrics for this quilt, but once it was together, I started thinking about it.

Somehow, I imagined that this quilt had quite a controlled color scheme, (at least compared to this!)  but when I really looked at it, I realized it had every color in the spectrum but purple.

Just an interesting tidbit, but I may think of it in the future.

And finally, my all time favorite fabric used for binding, Checker in Yellow designed by Early Bird for Cosmo Cricket.  I seriously LOVE this one.  It's just a great color with a great hand-drawn looking grid design.

What?! June already?

Time absolutely whizzzzes by!  I often wish that I had twice as much time, so that I could fit in all the things I'd like to do, all the skills I'd like to learn, and all the places I'd like to go, in this one short life.

On the other hand, that would be twice as many meals to cook, twice as many dirty bottoms to wipe, and twice as many loads of sandy, sweaty laundry.  So...

Ok, I was tempted to wax philosophical there for a bit....... but the urge passed.......luckily:)

On my last post, Liz (sorry, I couldn't reply to you Liz) asked me to talk a bit about my process in making that quilt.  Now, my problem here is that I LOVE to read about process from other folks.  Their thoughts, photos, just the whole path from beginning to end of the project.

BUT, I seem to find it very hard to do this myself.  When I'm in the middle of a quilt design, I have thoughts that I think I'd like to share here.  The problem is, this all takes extra time, and so before I know it, the quilt is finished, and I've almost forgotten how it went together, because I'm already dreaming of the next one.

The other problem is that when I sit down here to write, it all seems rather inconsequential.  Like, either this has all been said a hundred times before, or there's a tutorial for something like this already, or I just plain can't get my thoughts out here.

All this to say, I was inspired to show you my process in making this type of random pieced block.  I took a bunch of photos as I went along, and had it all written out in my head.

Then the sun peaked out from behind the clouds, I got the crazy idea to paint my dining room, and life in general happened!  So once again, my dreams of making a mini tutorial were thwarted.  But we'll see what the next week brings.