Baby Quilts in Black-and-White: Seeing Beyond Color

Stepping Stones Baby Boy Quilt Pattern Idea #1

When it comes to color, we can all be a bit biased. I realized that when I started searching for baby boy quilt patterns for my soon-to-arrive nephew and skipped everything that wasn’t neutral or had blues in it. It all changed when I figured out how to overcome color by using black-and-white. That’s where today’s Design Wall Tuesday story begins.

Name: Tiffany Warble

What I Do to Support My Quilt Habit: Director of Online Content at The Quilting Company

Where I Quilt: Fort Collins, Colorado

Where’d You Start: Truly it all started when I wanted to make our first nephew a quilt, but that was after I had been crocheting, knitting, making mixed media, and jewelry making. I was also a florist before fabric made its grand entrance. It’s as if one day I woke up and said, “Why not learn how to quilt?” I’ve made plenty of crochet afghans, knit hats, and small gifts, but I wanted to make him something extra special.

My Home Life: My husband will attest to our life being gloriously full of crafts. Given my previous answer, you can imagine what my studio looks like.

How About Those Quilts:  That first year I made a disappearing 9-patch for our nephew and a paper pieced quilt for our niece. Since then I’ve made a few easy panel quilts and some smaller projects, but the time has come for another full baby quilt.

What I’m Doing Today: With nephew #2 on the way, I recently started the search through our catalog of baby quilt patterns. Knowing their nursery colors are going to be grey and blue, I kept those in mind as I looked for the perfect design. That’s when I caught myself being color-biased!

I was missing interesting and unique patterns because I wasn’t looking past the colors on the screen. That’s when I remembered this post my co-worker wrote, where she showed her knit garments in color and black-and-white. Without color, it became all about pattern and interaction of the hues rather than the colors themselves.

So I searched through our popular quilts and started pulling them into Photoshop and making them black-and-white. What a difference it made!

Now it’s time to choose between five of our favorites. When you look at both color and black-and-white shots of each project, does the absence of color change your top pick?

  1. Stepping Stones – This surprisingly simple quilt could easily be made up in a variety of colorways. Pick similar colors to the original, go with blues and greys, or add a pinch of Pantone’s color of the year, Ultra Violet.
    Stepping Stones Baby Boy Quilt Pattern Idea #1

    This pattern is available to download or in Modern Patchwork January/February 2018.

  2. New Arrival – This might be for a “New Arrival” but this quilt pattern has the potential for many uses. Brighten up the nursery by picking fun colors or use fabrics with geometric patterns for a functional tummy time quilt.
    New Arrival Baby Boy Quilt Pattern Idea #2

    This pattern is available to download.

  3. My Only Sunshine – Just like the song, this quilt is sure to make a new baby happy. Now that you are seeing it in black-and-white, can you imagine this quilt in a series of neutrals as well as in brighter colors?
    My Only Sunshine Baby Boy Quilt Pattern Idea #3

    This pattern is available to download or in McCall’s Quilting July/August 2017.

  4. Sweethearts – It’s easy to see why this design is the most popular baby quilt right now. It’s layer cake friendly making it perfect for using that collection you’ve been eyeing.
    Sweethearts Baby Boy Quilt Pattern Idea #4

    This pattern is available to download for free or in Quilting Quickly January/February 2016.

  5. Twitter  – This unique pattern features pinwheel blocks and an ensemble of birds. Plus with two different appliques, you have even more possibilities for customization beyond just color.
    Twitter Baby Boy Quilt Pattern Idea #5

    This pattern is available to download or in Quiltmaker March/April 2018.

May the quilt making commence!


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