Color and Pattern


Now that a new quilt for Emma is done, and a proper “quilt rest” has followed, next comes a quilt for Ian’s bed. I’ve been wanting to make this Marquee pattern (above), from the FunQuilts Studio book The Modern Quilt Workshop, since the book came out in 2005, and when I started trying to gather ideas a few months ago, the idea that this pattern still inspires me convinced me this is one I’ll go with next. The effect of the tiny strips of color, surrounding the “ground” fabric feels traditional and modern to me, which I really like. Its described in the book as the strips of color being like flashing lights in Times Square. I can see that. Its a relatively easy pattern for me, which will be a nice change after the curved templates for the Single Girl. This pattern uses no templates, just plenty of rotary cutting strips and blocks, and I really like projects that involve nothing more than pretty fabric, a good sharp rotary cutting blade, and This American Life.
I’ve shared glimpses of Ian’s room before…orange walls (which he LOVES, by the way, I, myself probably never get a wink of sleep)…lots of Lego’s and toy cars…a shark’s tooth necklace…a log…and his Goodnight Moon quilt, which he’s used faithfully since the day I finished it. The idea behind making a quilt for his bed when he already has one is partly to have a seasonal change, something lighter than the green in the quilt he uses now, and partly because that’s what I like to do (and the family no longer asks why). Seattle is chilly at night right up until mid to late summer, when we get a brief heatwave that everyone complains about (including me) but is actually thankful for, so mid-weight quilts are an almost constant layer here. Plus I love the color and pattern challenge this quilt pattern presents for me. The quilting fabric market seems heavily bent towards large-scale, feminine prints these days, which is lovely for almost anything I would sew that would not end up in Ian’s room. I’ve had to look long and hard for what I liked that fit what I was looking for. The ground fabric in the photograph above has a subtle, tiny, all-over pattern that feels like a solid. That’s kind of what I’m looking for in the tiny pattern strips. Its been tough. I ordered several patterns from here (great sale prices on Denyse Schmidt’s Katie Jump Rope and others there, if you’re interested) When they came in the mail yesterday I was so happy to see some good harmonious pattern play going on and that I didn’t just order random prints that didn’t make sense together.

The ground will be Kona cotton gray (I can never remember exactly which gray, but a light one). There are a few more prints I plan to use that are not pictured here, but this sort of gives the idea I was going for around the gray. Small scale prints, some white, a little red and brown thrown in (and some old, solid green corduroy JCrew pj pants of mine that I’m donating to the project). I laught at the act of completely overthinking all of this type of thing, then realizing that it always seems to work in the end, whatever was chosen. I feel like I can move on. What do you guys think?

And that little guy?? right up there?? looking at the doggie in the rhinestone collar?
He’s quite the marquee himself.

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