So much for squaring up blocks!

I said I was off to square up blocks, but it’s really not my favourite task, so I took a wee break to brainstorm Baby Jane colour schemes! I was going to play around with my colouring pencils but they’ve gone walkies, so I went geeky and used a spreadsheet instead!

Here are my first 4 ideas:

Ok, the next bit is quite long winded – sorry! I’m trying to work out what layout and colours to go with and I’m really quite stuck… Feel free to skip the rest, although if would be great if you had any comments or ideas. This is such a massive project that I really, really don’t want to mess it up and regret my design!

Now I know this is a traditional quilt, but I’d like to use modern fabrics and play about with the layout a bit so that it ends up looking less traditional.

So first up, layout. I really like the way this quilt has an off-centre diamond and I’d like to do something similar. I’d originally thought of having off-centre squares, but now I’ve tried a diamond layout, I think I prefer it.

In the original quilt, I really struggled to see the around-the-world pattern and initially though the block colours were random. I prefer logical to random so would like to make the layout more obvious. With a square layout, each round has more squares than a diamond, so I think this immediately makes the layout clearer. But I’m still preferring diamonds. Perhaps making each diamond 2 blocks wide would make them more visible?

Next up, colour. Now, if I ever finish this quilt, it won’t be living with hubby and I. Hubby is not a fan of this particular quilt and doesn’t want it in our flat. That’s fair enough – there are lots of other quilts I’d like to make that he’d love so I’m happy for this quilt to live elsewhere. So I’m going to make it for my parents house. I’ve wanted to make them a quilt for a while now and am pretty sure they’ll love the design. So this one’s for them.

All the blocks are made from 2 fabrics and for me, the background will be white, because I need to keep the costs down and Ikea’s white Dvala sheets are nice and cheap! For the foreground, I would L.O.V.E. to use hot pink and baby pink, but my Mum doesn’t like pink, let alone my Dad so it needs to be something else!

The quilt will be going in a room with yellow walls, hence the use of yellow in all the above ideas. Plus I like yellow, and although it’s not pink, yellow is good 🙂 If I’m going to be working with one quilt for the length of time I’m going to be doing this for, then I want to like the colours (is that fair enough?).

To make the layout more obvious, I’d like to keep the number of foreground colours down. I’m thinking two (oh, that was obvious from the pictures?!) but I’m not sure about the second one. Orange? Blue? Green? A different shade of yellow? Brights? Pastels? The carpet in the room is beige and there’s some red and green in the curtains and the furniture is all pale-coloured wood, so I’ve got a fairly wide choice for the 2nd colour.

I don’t know. If anyone has made it this far, then I’d love to have some opinions. When you think of “modern”, what do you see?


9 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Anna Cox
    Jan 23, 2010 @ 22:11:02

    I like the off centred diamonds, and my preference would be brighter colours. I like your blue and yellow in your spread sheet, but then have just been reminded of a sofa in an old flat from uni – and changed my mind.

    not much use am I?


    • whatktmadenext
      Jan 23, 2010 @ 22:34:40

      LOL! I have a feeling I may just have to go look at fabric and see if anything jumps out at me…


  2. elle
    Jan 23, 2010 @ 22:31:45

    This will certainly be a significant undertaking. Like you, I find the colours more random than not. Diamonds would be cool though. I’m thinking bright, blue, yellow, green and some rose work lovely on white. Us old folks see brights better than pastels and all this work should be quite visisble. IMHO


    • whatktmadenext
      Jan 23, 2010 @ 22:44:05

      Thanks Elle. Good point about brights verses pastels 🙂 I guess also, if this does get finished and it lasts for a long time, pastels will fade into nothing quicker than brights.

      Ok, I think brights it is…


  3. Cheryl Arkison
    Jan 26, 2010 @ 21:26:43

    So, you’ve decided on brights, but what about the second colour. If you wanted perfect compliments, and that would make the diamond shape really stand out, you might want to consider purple. Yes, I said, purple. But depending on the colour wheel it might also be that blue.

    PS I’m going to link to this on tomorrow’s WIP Wednesday post.


    • whatktmadenext
      Jan 26, 2010 @ 21:49:58

      I read purple and went “aargh, purple!”, but when I think about it, that could be interesting. Although blue could also be good. I really like Amy Butler’s Daisy Chain fabric, so perhaps that’s a good starting point…

      Thanks for linking from WIP Wednesday. Really, your restart of WIP couldn’t have come at a better time for me because I’m struggling on this big time, and could do with all the help I can get!


  4. Nichole Pyle
    Jan 27, 2010 @ 22:15:17

    i also like the diamond pattern. i think it will make it look really interesting. as for colors, i agree about the brights. i really love how bright, modern fabrics look against white. the contrast it just so crisp and works very nicely. in the layouts you have above i like the green and blue the most. i think those will both look really good with yellow.

    good luck on this project! the dear jane quilts are such an undertaking! i look forward to seeing how your’s turns out with the modern twist.


  5. Felicity
    Jan 27, 2010 @ 23:52:54

    I prefer the diamond pattern as well. And I love your use of a spreadsheet as a design medium!!

    As for colour, it might be useful to choose a main fabric, then use that as your guide for the second colour. So for example if your main fabric is a medium-scale print (DJ blocks are small so you don’t want anything too large-scale), you could choose a small-scale print of a coordinating or contrasting colour. I know you said you’d like there to be yellow in the quilt but I am thinking that a lot of yellow might be too matchy-matchy with the room colour; in that case you could choose a main fabric that has yellow in it, but select a coordinating/contrast fabric in a complementary colour like blue or – yes – purple!


  6. elle
    Jan 28, 2010 @ 18:34:56

    Did you know purple is often a neutral? Think about egg plant all the way over to the very palest lavender. I, too, wasn’t too fussy on purple but there are a gazillion versions of purple. But watch for the periwinkles, some are very chameleon, blue one time, purple the next. So google some images of purple and it’s compliment, yellow in the brights. Gonna be fun!


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