2015 Pantone Quilt Challenge: Marsala

2015 Pantone Quilt Challenge: Marsala

Pantone chose Marsala as the Color of the Year.  The bloggers at Play Crafts and On the Windy Side are hosting a quilt challenge/competition to use this color in a quilt.

I pulled some fabric:

marsala stash

I did some sketching and that didn’t inspire any ideas. I looked through a few quilt books and got the idea to make some paper “snowflakes”, which turned out square:

paper cuts

I cut navy “snowflakes”, 15 by 15 inches, with marsala-inspired blocks as the background and vice versa:

sifter blocks

It seemed heavy. So I ditched the navy and went all out Marsala:


I liked the background but that was it. I started over. I went back to my sketches and found a design called The Three Bears with three Bear’s Paw blocks. I took that idea and created one, oversized, Bear’s Paw block I’m calling, “Mama Bear.”

mama bear block

I made a practice block to see what thread I wanted to use and to practice my free motion. I recently purchased the book, Shape by Shape, by Angela Walters. Using her book as a guide, I tried a few designs:

practice1 practice2 practice5 practice6

I didn’t like the pink thread and chose the wine color, Aurifil No. 2460, Dark Carmine Red, 28 weight, which looks more like the marsala color:

mama bear left paw5

This is the quilt, under construction. I had the idea to create “footprints” with pebbles filled in. So far I’ve quilted one of Mama Bear’s paws. I’m going to need more thread. The 28 weight goes fast, but I really wanted the stitching to stand out. By the way, Angela Walters uses Superior Thread So Fine in 50 weight in most of her quilting.

***My concern is that it won’t be “marsala” enough but too berry wine. I’m also concerned it won’t have the graphic impact I want. I’m too far in now to change Mama Bear’s mind, though.

Now that I recognize Marsala, I see it everywhere. I could see this blouse, seen on FleurBonheur’s site on Etsy.com, interpreted as a Marsala quilt:

Flamenco--romantic embroidered blouse, top, textile collage, wearable art, hand dyed, hand beaded details,


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