Monday, January 4, 2016

Outlined Plus, Let's Get Started!

I'm so happy that many of you are joining me in making the Outlined Plus quilt. Quilting together, while in person or online, is always fun, motivating and inspiring. I love seeing many versions of one pattern. Everyone has their unique interpretation ~ I'm looking forward to seeing yours!

Let's start today with an overview of how it's going to work and a bit about selecting your fabrics.

  • Every Wednesday starting the 6th, I'll be here sharing my progress and some tips on making the quilt. 
  • I'd love you to share your progress on Instagram. If you're not on Instagram, you're missing out. There is tons of inspiration there, in a simple, easy format. I'll be talking a bit more about Instagram in one of my weekly posts. One of the great things about Instagram is that through hashtags, we'll all be able to see each others photos on one simple page. We'll use the hashtag #outlinedplusquilt. If you want some direction on getting started now, here's a great tutorial.
  • The Quilt Along will end on Wednesday, February 17th. You'll need to have 9 blocks completed to eligible for a chance at one of 5 prizes. Yes, I said prizes! Cheryl is offering a pincushion from her etsy shop (US only) and 2 of her digital patterns to two different winners. I'm offering an 8 fat quarter bundle of Day Sail by Bonnie and Camille for Moda (US only) and a handmade item {made by me} as a bit of a souvenir of the QAL.
  • You don't need to have a blog or be on social media to win! 
You can be entered to win a prize by completing at least 9 blocks by 2/17 and letting me know in one of three ways:
  1. Post your final photo on Instagram. Use the hashtag #outlinedplusquilt, tag me @clammon, and note that it's your entry in the comment. (This would be my preferred method for you to enter)
  2. Comment on any Outlined Plus blog post here before the 17th with a link to your blog or flickr and your photo.
  3. Email a photo to me at

I will respond to your entry, so you know you're in.

I'll remind you of all this again :-)

So let's talk today about choosing your fabric. My favorite thing! You already have your pattern, right?

Option One - Choose a collection. Designer collections are great because everything is already coordinated for you. Just cut and go! This pattern is so versatile - I can't imagine a collection that wouldn't be gorgeous!

Option Two - Use a collection plus. This is one of my go-to methods of pulling fabrics. I love collections, but I always like to add my own touch to them. Just find different prints that are of similar colors to those in your collection. Often using earlier lines from the same designer is an easy way to start. I'm using the new collection from Maureen Cracknell called Fleet and Flourish. The top row is the collection and the bottom row has the pieces that I added.

Option Three - Choose a color scheme and select fabric within that scheme. You can get ideas for color schemes from multicolored fabrics, photos, magazines or even some websites like Design Seeds. I like to collect color palettes and keep a Pinterest board for ideas. I got an email last week that had a mint, coral, black and white scheme. I pulled this group from my stash. I really like it and may have to use it for something!

Whatever colors you choose for this quilt, you probably want to be sure that what you use in the "outline" portion of the plus is in high contrast to the plus and the background. You don't want to do all that piecing and end up with the outline not standing out. Remember contrast means how light or dark one color is next to another. The outline portion is a great place to use a really dark fabric or a really light fabric, but it's always relative to your other pieces. Solid or almost solid would work well.

You can see that my white really stands out in contrast to my other fabrics in this block:

That being said, it might be interesting to make 2-3 blocks with lower contrast. A block or 2 that is a bit different from the rest draws the eye into the quilt. Viewers will naturally want to examine the composition a little longer to "figure" it out consciously or unconsciously. I love adding a "wild child"  block or two to a quilt! Maybe in a sea of blue and green blocks, you might add one red one!

Here's a great example from my fabric pull of a block with lower contrast...

That's it for today! I'll be back on Wednesday to talk about cutting. If you have a fabric that's directional or stripey I have some directions on how to cut that so everything lines up.

If you have any questions throughout the QAL, please leave them in the comments. I'll answer them there so everyone can see. {You know you can always email me}

I'll be labeling all the QAL posts, so you can click on the label in the lower right.


  1. Surely I can get nine blocks done! Cindy, thank you for hosting quilt along!

  2. I am playing along Cindy... and posted my test block today on my blog and on IG. This is going to be wonderful... because, it's a project that I intend to make just for me!!!


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