Sometimes it takes many rounds of revision before I hit on a design that I like. I can walk you through how this one came to be, so you can see what I mean.
First, I started with a regular layout of squares and triangle-in-a-square blocks. I used flower shapes (like in #243), but coloured the squares in between the blocks to make it look like the shapes were overlapping. I liked how those background stars appeared, but overall the design felt a bit too crowded for me.
To relieve the crowdedness, I changed the layout (expanding the overall size, and increasing the number of blocks), added some negative space around the perimeter, and emptied out the central square of each shape (using the square-in-a-square block that I introduced in #245). I liked this version more, but it still felt a bit busy to me.
After looking at that design for awhile, I realised it might look interesting set on point (that is, on the diagonal). So I revised the design (all of this was done in Electric Quilt 8). Setting the same layout on point also introduces lots more negative space, which helps to focus your eye on the design but also relieves the busy-ness.
You’ll notice that I also filled in the spaces I’d introduced in the shapes themselves – I decided I didn’t need that square-in-a-square block after all.
So – I liked the diagonal layout more than the standard layout. But I still wasn’t completely satisfied. So I tried a few more variations, where the two sets of shapes (yellow and blue) overlapped in different ways. Here’s one.
Don’t you love those background stars that emerge in the middle, where the two sets of shapes overlap? I liked this version, but ultimately decided that there was still too much going on.
So I scaled back the movement by making the two sets of shapes run in parallel instead of perpendicular. Ahh, that’s better.
In this version, I also coloured those background stars in white. You might not notice them at first, as the white is only a shade brighter than the light-grey background. But once you get your eye in, they’re easy to find. I can’t decide if I prefer the stars highlighted like this or not… so you get to see both versions!
I used the same triangle-in-a-square block in the last two weeks’ designs, and here it is again. (Unlike the classic triangle-in-a-square block, the base of the triangle in this block doesn’t span the width of the square; it’s half as wide here.)
This shape is so versatile. I made scads of versions by rotating it, tiling it in different ways, reversing the colourway, and generally just playing around with it.
The above version started a bit like the one below (more or less), but I thought it would be fun to extend the lines up to the border of the page.
The block works well in asymmetric as well as symmetric designs. This next one’s probably my favourite, to be honest. I might try making this one – maybe as a mini or at least a smaller quilt. And maybe even in this colourway – I really like this blue and black (well, dark grey) combo.
This week’s design is almost identical to last week’s, but with one small change. That tweak has created a whole new design with much more movement and colouring opportunities. Can you see what’s different?
I tried a few other colour combinations, and used transparency in each one.
The difference is that instead of using a simple square as the middle block in each ‘flower’ shape, it’s now a square-in-a-square block.
Remember last week’s chonky flowers? Here they are with square-in-a-square centres:
(Also, I’m in love with that blue and dark grey colour combo.) Here’s some more flowery palettes.
I prefer the chonkier flowers from last week; they’re less refined but just strike me as happier and funnier (and more fun).
But this new design creates opportunities for moving away from ‘flowers’ into other more abstract shapes. There’s now a connection between the different ‘arms’ of each shape – instead of the north/south/east/west arms being separate from each other, they’re now connected to adjacent arms through that centre piece. This creates a bunch of 90-degree ‘V’ shapes that can be coloured separately.
I’m still playing with these shapes, so I may have more related designs to share next week!