Pink Castle Blog

5 Different Ways to Use Solid Fabrics in a Quilt

Posted by Katie Remski on Jan 22, 2018 8:45:00 AM
  

Solid fabrics are undoubtedly essential in every stash, but sometimes it's hard to know how to best utilize them in quilts. Maybe you don't like solids, or only see them as background fabric, or just aren't sure how best to incorporate them into your quilts. Here's 5 of our favorite ways to use solid fabrics!

1. Use solids as a background

Maybe the most common use for solid fabrics, a smooth, unobtrusive background lets the prints shine and provides a place for the eye to rest between blocks. For this quilt made by Brenda using Liberty of London Tana Lawn, the white offers a separation of the very detailed prints so each one can be appreciated without distraction.

Liberty of London Quilt at Pink Castle Fabrics
Chocolatier BOM at Pink Castle Fabrics

2. Make the solids your focus by using a print background

For an interesting twist on tradition, try using a print background and use solids for the feature elements in your blocks. Here in the Chocolatier quilt by AnneMarie Chany, solids make the blocks look graphic and bright while the busy print background keeps the eye moving away from pesky background seams. Look at how the custom quilting shines within the solid spaces!

3. Use a solid where you would have used a print

It can be tempting to pack as many favored prints as possible into one quilt, but adding in a few solids actually gives the prints a greater impact. In this half-square triangle quilt (made by me!) white and blush pink solids are randomly scattered throughout the blocks, allowing the subtle prints and hand quilting to pop. If you want to showcase your most precious stashed prints, adding a few solids next to them will boost their impact.

Good Hair Day Baby Quilt at Pink Castle Fabrics

Aura Quilt Kits at Pink Castle Fabrics

4. Use only solids

Without prints to distract the eye, all-solid quilts look clean and smooth. Solids give you the opportunity to play with color value, hue, and shade to create interesting shapes and even optical illusions. The Aura Quilt by Nydia Kenhle uses a balance of bright and neutral Kona Solids to make her quilt look complex (though it's contstruction is anything but) yet still modern.

5. Use solids for backing/binding

Using one solid fabric as the backing for your quilts lets you emphasize a color from the quilt top, like this stunning emerald green (similar color here.) Sometimes I use solid backings because I want to use a favorite color in a pure, unobtrusive way. Solids also help show off interesting quilting. This photo is the same quilt as #1-- now you can really see the floral quilting! You can also see the binding is the same white as the background, which prevents a hard visual outline around the quilt that can sometimes be distracting. 

Liberty of London Quilt at Pink Castle Fabrics

Thank you to all of you who contributed to our solid fabric survey. Stay tuned for more posts about how to use this essential part of every stash. 

All Solids in Stock!

Topics: Liberty of London, Gen X Quilters, Lecien, solids, Quilting, Fabric, quilt finishing, Kona solids, Robert Kaufman, solid fabric, cotton

Interview with Violet Craft about Kona Solids

Posted by Katie Remski on Jan 5, 2018 8:00:00 AM
  
 

t's no secret we love sewing with solids, but sometimes choosing colors to use and how to stash them for later can be a little overwhelming. To help us learn about using and stashing Kona Solids from Robert Kaufman, we talked to some of our favorite designers! 

Violet Craft uses solids for her amazing Animal Abstractions quilts, with varying shades creating facets of color and bringing the creature to life. Read on to see what she had to say about her favorite colors, how she stays organized, and why Kona is her favorite solid.

 RKQM_1049 Violet Craft WHITE BACKGROUND.jpg

How do you Stash Solids? (How much do you buy when you don't have a specific project? What's the best size to stash, etc?)

It completely depends on what is in front of me. I often buy fat quarter bundles of colors because I love the way they've been used together. If I'm stocking up on a color just because I see it and have to have that particular color I will buy one to three yards. If it's just REALLY YUMMY, I'll have to get at least 3 yards.

What colors do you gravitate towards?

I like saturated pastels, like Pink, Coral, Mint, Aqua and Petunia

How do you use solids in your projects? (backgrounds, main feature, binding, etc)

All the ways!

What do you love about Kona Solids?

Kona solids come in such a wonderfully diverse amount of colors and have a great hand for piecing. They're sturdy enough that I'm not scared to slice them up and use them in all sorts of projects, but they have a beautiful finish that just feels great too.

What's one piece of advice you want to give about sewing with solids?

You need the colors you don't think you need. That beige-y cream-pink might not look so exciting on the bolt all by itself, but you pair it into your more saturated colors and it just makes them POP! Don't be afraid to get a good range of things and just start mixing and matching them up in piles to find the palette that works. This is why I love fat quarter bundles so much. You can get a smaller piece of a LOT of colors to play with.

Thank you Violet for your tips and tricks! If you're interested in collecting all 340 Kona Solids, click here

Learn about our Kona Complete Club!

Topics: solids, Fabric, Kona solids, kona complete club, solid fabric, violet craft

Interview with Carolyn Friedlander about Kona Solids

Posted by Katie Remski on Dec 15, 2017 8:00:00 AM
  

It's no secret we love sewing with solids, but sometimes choosing colors to use and how to stash them for later can be a little overwhelming. To help us learn about using and stashing Kona Solids from Robert Kaufman, we talked to some of our favorite designers! 

Carolyn Friedlander's use of color and solids in her work always inspires us to branch out and try something new. Read on to see what she had to say about her favorite colors, how she stays organized, and why Kona is her favorite solid. 

carolyn friedlander_2_667px.jpg

How do you Stash Solids? (How much do you buy when you don't have a specific project? What's the best size to stash, etc?)

I keep solids together in their own section that I have organized by color. This makes working with them super easy. Having a couple of color cards is a must for me. I have one that I cut up and one that I keep intact. The intact card is always a great reference and overview, whereas the cut card is perfect for project and palette planning

What colors do you gravitate towards?

Pickle, Orangeade, Wasabi, Leather, Lingerie, Cantaloupe, Astral--there are so many good ones!

How do you use solids in your projects? (backgrounds, main feature, binding, etc)

I use solids any and everywhere. They're handy!

What do you love about Kona Solids?

I love the wide range of colors and the overall quality. The weight and hand are perfect.

What's one piece of advice you want to give about sewing with solids?

Kona solids are great and easy to work with. I don't usually pre-wash, but if you are using them in a way that will get handled a lot (i.e. handwork), I've found that pre-washing can help limit fraying. This tip isn't limited to Kona solids, it's handy for prints as well!

Thank you Carolyn for your tips and tricks! If you're interested in collecting all 340 Kona Solids, click here

Learn about our Kona Complete Club!

Topics: solids, Fabric, Kona solids, Robert Kaufman, carolyn friedlander, kona complete club

Cotton and Steel October 2017: Sienna and Snap to Grid

Posted by Katie Remski on Aug 23, 2017 9:30:00 AM
  
Sienna by Cotton+Steel Snap to Grid by Cotton+Steel

Cotton and Steel has two new releases for October-- Sienna by Alexia Marcelle Abegg and Snap to Grid by Kim Kight. Let's take a look at what makes these lines so unique! 

Sienna by Cotton+Steel  "Sienna" has 16 prints inspired by the desert, featuring both brilliant turqouise and sun-faded reds and grays. Each print was hand stamped or painted by Abegg, which gives them a rustic, artistic look, and we love how they mix with textured solids like Essex Linen. 
"Snap to Grid" might be the most rad fabric we've ever seen! These blenders manage to be fresh and new while also being true to the 1980s spirit. Scattered shapes and splashes of neon punch up a palette of neutral and bright colors. You could use to add a little nostalgia to quilts and accessories, but I can't help but wonder if a ruffle-tiered skirt made from the aqua and pink permanent wave print would be appropriate workwear. Hmmm... Snap to Grid by Cotton+Steel

Shop Cotton + Steel Fabrics Here!  

Topics: Fabric

Chocolatier BOM - August

Posted by Brenda Ratliff on Aug 21, 2017 11:44:00 AM
  

Hi everyone!

Each month we will be sharing the current Chocolatier Block with you - we're grateful you've chosen to sew with us!

For all of the blocks in the Chocolatier quilt, we recommend pressing all seams open. Some of the pieces in these blocks can get small and pressing open can help reduce bulk when multiple seams collide.


June's blocks are called Rosebud and Arbor Window and use lots of little pieces, so precision is key! We'll be making one of each block. 


Like most months, we're starting off with HST units. those will be attached to a Chocolate triangle. Make 4 of these shapes.

Next, sew the rows to the White Polka Dot and Yellow fabric. This will make a 3 1/2" x 3 1/2" square.

Be VERY careful pressing these shapes. you can see that my block became a little distorted. 

Arbor Window is a simple block. Make sure all your squares are the cut well; this will really help your block turn out.
Carefully trim the block to 6 1/2" x 6 1/2"When you've finished this month's blocks, hop on over to Instagram and show them off using the hashtags #chocolatiersampler and #PCFchocolatier - we love seeing what you make!

See you next month! - Kara 

Topics: Block of the Month, Monthly Clubs, Chocolatier Block of the Month, Fabric

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