Saturday, April 4, 2020

Where did all the grey come from?

I wondered if I had enough light and medium neutral scraps to make a throw with my three sunflower blocks.  You should have seen the look on my daughter's face.  She looked at my stash shelf, then looked at me and laughed.

She was right.  I had plenty.  In my defense, I wasn't sure how much variety I had in that bin.  Still, as you see, I made it work.  The grey bin now contains a reduced variety of fabrics, and is comfortably full rather than bursting at the seams, but there are still plenty of grey bits and pieces to pull for some other project.

Where did all that grey come from??!!  I'm a brights gal!  This quilt has to be the most neutral, low-volume quilt I've ever made, and even that had those pops of yellow to brighten it up. I just had a look through my quilt pictures to see if I could figure it out. 

Since 2001, I have finished 74 quilts plus assorted table runners and place mats. Four of those quilts have grey backing.  Trimming the backing after quilting yields a lot of scraps, so I'm not surprised to find those fabrics in my sunflower quilt.  Still, there is a lot more variety than that in the quilt!

I didn't use any grey at all in any quilt until 2014 when a some grey block corners made an appearance in my son's Kaleidoscope quilt (finish #34). Eclipse Sky (#47) and Fundy Skies (#42) in 2016 were yellow/grey quilts, but there were only 3 different greys between them, and I only scraps had of two of the three.

Eclipse Sky

Fundy Skies

My daughter's bed quilt has a scrappy neutral background, including light greys and grey on white prints, though the greens and oranges certainly dominate it.  I used up the last of those scraps in this quilt.

Altogether I could only identify 14 projects that used any grey, in the top or the backing or both.  Scraps from three of those were too dark for this background, so didn't contribute.  There were four 1/4 yard cuts in the bin that I had bought for something yet never used, so that accounts for a little bit more of the variety. 

All this to say, I think scraps multiply.  How else did I get a whole quilt background from scraps from so few projects?

Don't worry.  I won't list all the quilts the yellows came from.  I honestly don't think I could!  I had expected my yellow stash to lack variety too...

I'm off to add prairie points accents to my sunflower quilt!  Thanks goodness for the yellow stash to brighten up the grey stash!

Sunflower blocks are from the pattern Soaking Up the Sun from the book Mini Wonderful Curves from Sew Kind of Wonderful.


  1. All your quilts are beautiful. Grey and yellow look great together.

  2. Wherever, you made great use of those grays and yellows in times past, and again in your Sunflower quilt. The prairie points really add a lot too. Have fun on the finish; I'll be watching for it! ---"Love"

  3. I know how those scraps grew. I'm telling you it's the scrap fairy, it's the only explanation that makes sense. At least in my house. :)

  4. The sunflower quilt is coming along nicely.

  5. I usually do not like the new colors especially grey, but you did a terrific job on the use of grey with the yellows! Really helps the grey rescind to the back! Hugs

  6. Love your creativity on this quilt. Beautiful. Also enjoyed looking at your other quilts!

  7. I remember these quilts... has it really been that long? I love your use of prairie points - I really need to try that out one of these days.

  8. The gray background makes the sunflowers shine more brightly. SEW perfect!

  9. Grey and yellow always look wonderful together! Here's hoping that the grey skies of the world turn sunny again soon :)

  10. Another pretty quilt! I love the pops of color with the grey. All the different greys really make an interesting background! The sunflowers are perfect to cheer things up!


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