Make Low Volume Quilts with Bright Colors
Making low volume quilts with bright colors is a great way to create a very modern design. Fat-quarter friendly, these quilts allow incredible fabric selections with many different layout options. Stock up on your low volume fabrics (aff link) and pull out your favorite bold batiks (aff link) It’s time to make low volume quilts with lots of color!
Download your Free Low Volume & Batik Pattern
What Is A Low Volume Quilt?
Low volume quilts and fabrics are neutral, light colored, prints used in an all over pattern. The distinction of low volume fabrics is the overall color and design which are neutral enough to be considered a background fabric. Subtle and understated, low volume fabrics blend well together creating a beautiful backdrop for your showcase fabric pieces.
When I first used low volume fabrics, I purchased multiple curated fat quarter bundles. This gave me about thirty-five different fabrics to work with and resulted with a beautiful overall quilt top.
Low Volume Quilt Companion Fabrics
This is where the fun begins! Low volume fabrics are beautiful on their own and create a soft subtle feel. But don’t overlook the opportunity to use low volume fabrics as your background. The variety of patterns and designs develop a very interesting base to build on. Start to add your favorite fabrics in a color scheme you really like. This is a great project to bring in some favorite fat quarters!
Try using bright, bold prints like the batik fabrics in this quilt. They become areas of saturated color that draws the viewer’s eye. Bold, bright fabrics are captivating and create a quilt full of colorful energy.
How to Choose Low Volume and Bright Color Fabrics
Neutral and Strong Colors
The primary characteristic of low volume fabrics is their neutral color. This generally includes shades of white to beige to grey plus any pastels you choose to include.
Now it’s time to add your strong, colors for lots of contrast. Whether you want a monochromatic color scheme, or every color of the rainbow, aim for high contrast. There are no pastels here.
Subtle and Bold Colors
Low volume fabrics have low color value and the prints recede into your quilt design. With minimal color intensity, these fabrics all blend together into a great background.
For a bold contrasting design, choose intense, vibrant colors to stand out against your neutral background. Also vary the shades of each color blending them to add further interest.
Low and Intense Contrasts
Low volume fabric prints vary significantly and generally tend to blend together rather than stand out on their own.
Choose your bright fabrics to do the opposite. The bolder, vivid designs with contrasting prints work perfectly. The more difference in fabrics, the more interesting your design will be.
How to Design Low Volume Quilts with Bright Colors
Patchwork blocks are an easy, quick way to piece a quilt. They fit together well which makes combining different colors and patterns quite easy. Whether you make blocks with squares that are all the same size, or you choose to mix it up, here is where you begin to build your quilt design.
Choose How Much Contrast
These examples are made with 36-patch blocks. Each block is six squares wide by six squares high. Your next decision is how to balance the color in your quilt. Each of my blocks have from four to eight batik squares grouped together with the rest being low volume squares. This makes the bolder batik fabrics really stand out against the low volume fabrics. You may also choose to add a few blocks that are all low volume fabrics to make an even bolder statement. Or sprinkle a few extra batiks throughout your quilt for a fun confetti look.
Let Your Bright Colors Carry the Design
The easiest method to add color is to simply piece colorful squares randomly throughout each block. You can keep each block monochromatic or really mix it up with a multitude bright colors popping all over. If you make each block with similar colors, you can lay them out to transition from color to color across your quilt. I chose to mix my color blocks up randomly.
How you piece your bright color squares will determine the look of your quilt top. You can see that I chose to stack my blocks in different directions for a graphic, modern look. It’s a fun way to group your favorite colors and make a bold statement. You can also mix and match your square sizes to emphasize a favorite fabric or color. The beauty of working with squares is that they are so customizable.
You may also choose to really jazz your blocks up. From a few simple wonky corners, to adding triangles or circles, you can create beautiful blocks with contrasting low volume and bold color fabrics. You can also try some crazy quilting, or log cabin blocks with asymmetrical strips. The beauty is all the different options you can choose from. Pick one and make a block. Then make another. Either the same way or differently. Then combine it all together for an amazing quilt. However you choose to design your blocks, it’ll be a fun adventure in playing with colors.
Fat Quarter Quilt Binding
A Step-by-Step Guide for a Perfect Finish Every Time!
Don’t forget to add a fantastic finish to your new quilt with a fat quarter quilt binding. Choose a striking fabric that will set off your quilt beautifully. See all the details in the video above and get your fat quarter quilt binding started today!
Here’s a beautiful quilt submitted by fellow reader, Coleen. She used my free low volume & batik pattern with fabulous results! Give this pattern a try yourself and create a beauty you’ll enjoy for years to come.
Please be sure to post your projects on Instagram #LeaLouiseQuilts.