Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Solid Blocks

You may have noticed the blocks hanging from the ceiling at Bright Hopes Quilting lately. All the staff have been making them and as they come in, they go up and we hope to have the ceiling covered in a few weeks.

Each block is made entirely of solids. Only solids. The pure color allows the block to stand out and keeps things simplified. It has a rather Amish look to it. It is exciting for me to walk in and see new ones hanging.

Each block is at least 16" square. This is a great size because once the project comes down, people can turn the individual squares into sofa pillows or bags. With enough of them, a good sampler quilt is a definite possibility!

So, what are we doing this for?

Fun, mainly. Why not just have fun? Why have to make a whole huge quilt just to play around a little? I have my own personal favorite blocks: Dutchman's Puzzle, Variable Star, Card Trick, Rising Star (in fact I am almost finished with a huge scrappy batik in this block, I like it so much!) and I really like how they look all by their lonesome.

Challenge. Well.... let's face it, some people are skeptical of solids. "The heck!", you say.  

No, really! They are so bold and simple that they can intimate! 

Okay, here's a question for you: When was the last time you incorporated a solid into your quilt unless it was the background? hmmmmm?

These solids of ours started arriving last summer and I watched them float in, maybe 15-20 at a time. Gorgeous pure color. And I waited. After a few months, we had over 100 bolts of crayon-colors lining the shelves like soldiers and I just mentally malfunctioned.

They are so clean and strong and frightening! I mean.... part of what we do every day is attempt to match and pair colors with each other in a fabric line or for a pattern. With solids, it really is hit or miss and so very evident when you miss!

Here is an example: We got in the latest Kaffe Fassett's just before Christmas and I really like this bright, tropical floral. I knew the quilt I wanted to make, as well.

Gorgeous bold color and the antithesis of Winter. So, I picked up the bolt and waltzed over to the solids. With 100+ colors to choose from, matching these oranges and purples should be a breeze!

With two possible exceptions, none of the solids match the color exactly but they came together and played nicely with each other.

This is New York Beauty, a block I have wanted to make for quite a while. I knew I wanted to make the spikes in solids to really show them off!
 Everything else was negotiable.

I am showing below the blue I had chosen (originally) to use in this sample but as I was 'auditioning' the spikes in the New York Beauty to the prints and with the help of an honest friend (Thanks Kathy! You made it better!), I realized that this blue was never going to play nicely with the other colors. So I kicked him out. It was the closest blue to the Fassett print we had, so I took it. Didn't use it. That's okay too; it gave me a background color for a Solids Block.

What I find really interesting is those colors below, in this Little Sister block, are the same orange, purple and pink as you see above, but look how washed out the pink appears in the block! (I also want you to look at the tight points!)(another reason to make simple blocks... practice the points!)

Okay, all this being said, if you would like to join this project, make any square block you like (or multiples... we like participation!) using ONLY SOLIDS and make them at least 16" but no larger than 24". Pin your name to the back so we know who to return them to and drop them off at the shop.

There is no competition and no swap because the sizes would be confusing. Also, this is for fun!

We'll have them hanging on display for all to see.

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