The road ends, but the journey continues...

Plays Well with Orange

I tend to let loose with my color splashes in the fabric realm.  Grabbing scraps and stitching them together with a rough nod to the log cabin process of construction is my usual modus operandi when in need of a creative break.

Dora Quilt and Future Shock Book

Orange Color Scheme Examples: Pastel-y/candy-ish Dora quilt and garish orange & black book cover

This time around my bottom line need to use up scraps in spontaneous quilted creations has been utilized in a very different way. I found a pattern (yikes, I haven’t used a pattern in years) that incorporated Charm Packs…and applied it for my personal use. I don’t own a single Charm Pack, but have plenty of 2½ inch strips of fabric from decades of projects that can be adapted for use in anything requiring 2½ x ? pieces. In this case, the pattern required 25, 5 inch square pieces of fabric cut in half…resulting in 2½ x 5 inch pieces to build a block as directed.
It’s been a long time since I colored within the lines.
Tired of my status quo random crazy log cabin approach to piecing, this pattern caught my eye and offered yet another way to use up my available scraps.  Infusing freshness to the same old scraps!
I am having a blast doing this, and it’s not at all limiting – staying within the ‘lines’ of this quilt pattern.  The lattice aspect is yielding an extra design element within the basic design and the size (30 x 30) insures a finished product within a reasonable timeframe.
Why the mention of a quilt project in progress? Well, to be frank, I’ve hit a wall on my editing/rewrites on the vignettes associated with the Goat Suite (Saga) and am in a state of limbo on going further with the completion of my actual EP featuring the music of said Suite. And that’s okay – it’s all part of the process IMHO.
Happy to say, delving into something 100% different from a current project often helps me in the advancement of the more ‘important’ one and hence, a focus on a mini-quilting project was born this past week.
The example picture of the above mentioned quilt pattern, Dora*, features an orange border; albeit more pastel-y/candy-ish than I personally like.
sc license plate orange & blue scheme

South Carolina’s Palmetto Moon in blue & orange

However, it got my mind to thinking: what really goes with the color orange?
Standby combos of Broncos colors and even the now discontinued (to my huge disappointment) regular issue SC license plate with orange and blue notwithstanding – what else really goes with this color?
Years ago, I had a store-bought quilt utilizing paler shades of orange with sage greens and periwinkle blues…and I have loads of gorgeous ethnic fabrics centered around an orange theme.  And let’s not forget that there’s always the garish orange and black of Halloween fame. (But, please, let’s do forget about the ‘70s burnt orange, harvest gold and avocado green fiasco!)
Woven colors and seashell orange color palatte

Orange Color Examples: woven fabric and seashell color palette

On a recent beach combing jaunt up near Wilmington, NC** I noticed glimmers of orange dominating the shell landscape and decided to gather them based upon a type of color scheme for orange go-withs. Nature often offers clues to color palettes, and I was eager to investigate what she had to showcase.
As I allowed my eyes to see orange in the everyday landscape, the reality of its easy compatibility with other colors became so obvious…

Orange may not rhyme*** with any (usable for poetic verse) word in the English language, but it definitely plays well with other colors!

*from: “3 Times the Charm!” by Me & My Sister Designs
**about 2½ hours northeast of FloTown
***Orange rhymes with Blorenge  (a mountain in Wales) and sporange (a technical word for a sac where spores are made)


  1. Lori

    Love earthy colors. Hey Laura, do you follow Anneli? She’s big into quilting.

    • laura bruno lilly

      No, I’ll go check her out, thanks!

  2. Anna Scott Graham

    I totally hear you about moving to a different sort of creative vibe, and this one is quite a stunner! Love those hues together; I don’t mind the pastel appearance. I do like the look of that SC license plate, too bad it’s discontinued. But from the sounds of it, you have a winning colour scheme all planned out!

    • laura bruno lilly

      I’m thinking the color scheme will actually be for another quilt other than the Dora one shown here…That one I’m committed to using my scrap strips (of which there are a few orange ones!) from decades of projects! HA! Besides, I have most of the blocks ready for the next stage of playing around with placement.
      I don’t have a quilt wall like you, it would certainly come in handy at this point! 🙂

  3. Lisa

    Orange is a happy color!

    • laura bruno lilly

      For sure – hope you have an orangey happy day today!

  4. Cindy Anderson

    Everybody needs a little orange in their life.

    • laura bruno lilly

      Spoken like a true quilter 😉
      Thanks for stopping by, Cindy.

  5. Janis

    I think it’s smart to turn to another creative endeavor when you are stuck. It keeps the juices flowing, just in another direction.
    I never thought that I was a fan of orange, but when we changed the main colors of our living room to blues and grays, a couple of pops of orange was just the thing to pull it all together.
    I hope you will share your quilts with us as you complete them!

    • laura bruno lilly

      Youngest son had a 100% Broncos Orange room until we moved to another home, where I insisted upon a Broncos Orange Accent wall! More sophisticated for the then teen and much easier for Mom to enjoy that ‘pop’ of color!!!

  6. Jennie Fitzkee

    I love this!

    • laura bruno lilly

      Thanks! Orange you glad you stopped by??? (I bet you get that knock-knock joke in the classroom a lot)

  7. L. Marie

    Laura, I emailed you, because I’m working on something with an orange theme also.

    • L. Marie

      I’m not sure my whole comment came through. After I typed and pushed Post, I saw only one sentence in under “comment awaiting moderation.” In case the rest dropped off, I agree with you about nature showing us harmonious color blending. I think that’s the same with writing. We work to make our creative works cohesive. (That’s the shortened version of what I wrote.)

      • laura bruno lilly

        You’re so right, L. Marie. Key word here: we work for cohesion.

    • laura bruno lilly

      Too cool! Will respond soon!

      • L. Marie


  8. Jill Weatherholt

    I’m sorry to hear you’ve hit a wall on your rewrites, Laura. But I’m curious to know more about your quilting project. Happy Sunday!

    • laura bruno lilly

      Photos to follow once it’s finished, to be sure.
      Happy Sunday to you, too!

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