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Wednesday, February 22, 2023

A Lesson Learned and NTT

Welcome to Needle and Thread Thursday, friends!  Today I get to share my latest quilt top, made from that gorgeous Anna Maria bundle I shared last week.

This is a pattern that I designed several years ago, and though I think the quilt is lovely, it has reminded me of an important lesson.  The scale of prints for a quilt MUST be right for the pattern.  I really wanted to use the rich colors of Anna Maria's fabrics, and though I thought I was using fabrics that would work when cut up, I'm not sure they do.  This quilt is really pretty, but it's because the fabrics are pretty.  The pattern itself gets lost.  Here is the pattern mock up as I designed it.  

(Just a note- these are Anna Maria fabrics in the mock up, but the scale is not accurate, proving my point that print scale is critical for certain patterns.)

A fairly big difference, wouldn't you agree? Here, you can see that smaller scale prints really allow the pattern to shine through.  You can clearly see the primary flower shape, as well as the secondary square shape with the "flower buds" created when the blocks come together.

If you study the quilt you can make out the flowers, squares, and buds, but with the best marriage of fabric and design, I don't think you should have to study a quilt to discern the pattern.  Even a quilt made with a mix of smaller prints, blenders, and a few larger prints would probably work,  but this quilt made entirely from larger prints just doesn't (for my purpose, anyway).  I'm calling this one Blossoms and Buds, and I think I'm going to have to make it again with different fabrics that show off the pattern better if I want to release it for sale.  On the plus side, the larger blocks go together faster than I expected, so that shouldn't be too difficult.

It just goes to show that even if you have a gorgeous bundle of fabric and a pretty pattern,  it doesn't always mean that they are a good match for each other.  You can't always force certain fabrics into certain quilts, no matter how gorgeous they are.  A good reminder for myself!

What do you think?  Do you agree with my assessment?  Is it worth remaking and releasing?  Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

Last week's party was filled with eye-candy, like this puff quilt from Quilting Gail-

Anne-Marie at Stories From the Sewing Room shared this fresh quilt top finish-

And this lovely version of the Exploding Heart quilt is from Rita at Quiltpiecer-

Okay then!  Let's get to it!

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  1. Your quilt is lovely! The large prints invite me to explore the different patterns on the fabrics.

  2. For me, the first thing I do when seeing a new quilt, is trying to dissect it's piecing. I love that part. I also love quilts that don't give away their piecing path straight away. A challenge keeps pushing us forward. I think the fabrics you used are lovely for this project. I suppose to sell it as a pattern it needs to look simpler?

  3. It is a lovely pattern and the fabrics are gorgeous. I see your concern and often struggle with it myself. I feel like a bold/large scale print needs some room to shine, like negative space around it so that it can be truly seen. Like a castle that needs a large garden around it so that it can be viewed from a distance.

  4. I think your quilt is pretty and I see what you mean with mock up vs. reality. Something to think about. Thanks for sharing my quilt.

  5. that is a pretty pattern. I have trouble with large scale prints

  6. Your quilt is really pretty. I think the fabrics do work well. Sometimes large scale prints can steal the show though.

  7. The scale of prints definitely impacts the overall design. The great news is that you will still have a functional and beautiful quilt when this one is finished. But if you are going to release the pattern, I'd probably make a different one as a cover quilt (and then look, two quilts of the same pattern make a great teaching aid...). :)

  8. I do see what you mean in regard to the design getting lost in the fabric, but I still love it. It’s so cheerful and happy. Gorgeous!

  9. I agree, Kelly. The fabrics are lovely, but your design is lost. Scale is a difficult concept for new quilters (which I know you are NOT) so I'm glad you have shared this.


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