Springtime Christmas Crosses Quilt!

Oh dear – the season is coming. I enjoy Christmas, but I sometimes feel overwhelmed by the red and green and cheeriness everywhere. So I was a little suprised when a quilting doodle on the computer turned into something quite season-appropriate…
A cheerful semi-christmas color palatte and simple patchwork
Maybe a springtime christmas?  The stripes are a little candy-cane-esque, and the entire pattern seems playful and cheerful to me.  I’ve also been playing with red crosses on a different quilt honoring nurses – for all the time I spent on that quilt, this is equally effective.

The pattern I played with after seeing this quilt on etsy; I jumped right in, but the pattern is called officially a bento box.  I rotated and played with the color arrangement – here’s my illustrator screen…Different layouts for a bento box quiltThere’s a lot to play with in the original pattern as well, but I wasn’t enjoying the sharp dislocations on the screen. I feel like it would be softened by slightly uneven seams from hand-sewing, or a less contrasting color scheme.  The bottom middle quilt is my first effort, and the most basic.

The white crosses were a little stark, so I closed the gap with the pinwheel blocks.  The simple block border and addition of a (gasp!) really graphic border fabric enlivened the pattern, so I pulled the red striped fabric into the body of the quilt as well.

Having the simple Illustrator version might help you see what happens after the patchwork is set. In Photoshop, I add a linen-type texture, a photo for meaning and to add some variation in values (this quilt has a picture of my family Christmas tree in 2006), stitching emphasis, and tweak the color values and a number of other settings to get a final quilt I’m pleased with.

A corner from the Christmas Crosses quiltThanks for checking it out!  How do you feel about the red-and-green invasion of the holidays?

(got curious about making it a little bigger- big big bed size – I think the pattern works this way too)

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