Monday, 28 March 2016

Looking for an Aggressive Fabric

Have you ever thought of fabric as being aggressive? I haven't, at least not until I was looking for fabric to use for borders for my Stars Over Africa quilt. The quilt is a project I'm working on to enter in the Johnson's Sewing Centre/Quilter's Dream quilting challenge. I purchased a 4 fat quarter bundle and have to use some of each fabric in my quilting project, and can add whatever fabrics I want. The quilt has to be a minimum of 16" square, but can be a bag, a jacket or other quilted project - not just a quilt. I opted for a throw size quilt, and here's what I have so far (ignore the purple square as that's part of a different project):
These are the actual fabrics in the bundle (Northcott's Karma Spirit):
Those elephants were just begging to be fussy cut. Originally I was planning on doing a scenic childrens quilt with elephants, water (aqua fabric), grass (green fabric) and flowering shrubs (pink fabric). I purchased the blue batik in the photo below to use as the sky:
I also added the coral fabric, just because I liked it and it seemed to fit in the colour scheme. However, if I wanted to win the challenge, I felt that I needed to come up with something better than a funky elephant scene. That's when I decided to use the black fabric and make the star quilt. However, I wanted it be at little more interesting and decided to set this section on point. I want to put a border around this section, add four more blocks (not sure what those blocks will be yet) plus setting triangles for the corners, then a final border. The setting triangles will likely be the blue batik. But coming up with a fabric for the borders is another matter. I'm trying to avoid purchasing more fabric, so I rummaged through my stash. I had to find something that both colours and patterns suited the rest of the quilt. Because the colours and patterns in the fabric are definitely not subdued, I realized I needed something "aggressive." 
Upper left and centre fabrics are just too "wimpy" for this quilt. Top right fabric is not quite the right colours, and the pattern is definitely not right. Lower left - the pattern is great, but the colours are not quite right, though I haven't totally ruled this one out. 
These two are awesome colours, but not bold enough for this quilt.
More great fabrics, but nothing really aggressive about any of these.
Ouch! The colours are right, and it's definitely bold, but the pattern really doesn't work.
The one on the lower left is what I purchased for the binding. I will probably use the one on the lower right for the first border. I don't want to use it for the outer border as it doesn't contrast sufficiently with the binding. I'm not really sure if the orange fabric in the centre will work, and there's not enough of it for the outer border. Still considering... I may have to break down and buy some fabric, which, of course, will be such a hardship. LOL!
Meanwhile, in my 5 days off work over Easter, I did a couple of mini quilts to enter in Moda's contest celebrating Electric Quilt's 25th anniversary. I would have dearly loved to win a copy of EQ7, but I didn't. I had fun anyway. 
This is Summer Star.
Here you can see it's been cat-tested and approved.
And this is Spools. 
And yes, I actually did free motion quilting on my domestic machine on both of these quilts. 
That's all for now. Time to give my grandson a bath, which is Grandma's privilege tonight.