Thursday, February 17, 2011

Red, White, and Bold

The red-and-white quilts we've shown so far have featured red elements on a white ground. Today's thoroughly modern quilt reverses the trend, with white squares that provide a high contrast to the square red field. We love this quilt, which is emblematic of Debbie Grifka's bold, graphic style.

Bold, 40 x 40", by Debbie Grifka at Esch House Quilts

This quilt displays all of the core elements of good design. Notice that the vertical column has seven squares, while the horizontal row has five squares (the "rule of odds" suggests that an odd number of subjects in an image is more interesting than an even number.)  Also, exact bisections of the picture space have been avoided.  This quilt does have a focal point (can you identify it?) Finally, the pure red space that makes up the bulk of the quilt is the equivalent of 'negative space', but it is not 'empty space'. Check out the quilted diagonal lines; some of them are set at oblique angles.

Red is a color that is thought to raise the heart rate, but this red quilt is almost soothing. The fabric has a low luster, which makes it seem to absorb light. Debbie Grifka explains: "When I decided to make Bold, I just knew I had to use a Cherrywood Fabrics red. The subtle colors and texture were just what I needed. I didn't want to order over the internet since I really wanted to see the color. So my friend and I drove to the International Quilt Festival in Chicago, where they were vending, and back in one day (10 hours round trip) mostly so I could get that fabric! I still think it was worth it - a little crazy, but worth it."

The pattern for Bold and other modern quilt designs can be obtained online at Esch House Quilts.

Image credits: The image of Bold is shown with the generous permission of Debbie Grifka.


  1. It is so refreshing to come to this blog - I will be here every day - it's great to see something new with a different perspective and interestingly explained

  2. Today's post is a good prompt for me to get a red/white quilt top out of the closet and finish it!

  3. I've been loving all the red and white quilts, even though this one appears quite simple it somehow draws you in, reminds me a bit of an Amish quilt.


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