February seems to be all about spreading love to our special someone as well as to others around us. The symbol of that love is often a heart. In keeping with this theme, EQ8 used the Striped Heart as this month’s spotlight.

To be honest, it isn’t my favorite heart block (I am a bit more of a traditionalist), which of course makes the challenge that much more intense. I tried about ten different ideas before this one struck me. The striped hearts are more modern, so I looked for more modern blocks to accompany it, which included this Louver Fan block. by connecting the Striped Hearts with the Louver Fans, the block took on a rounded effect. This left a blank in the center and was a little bland.

It needed something to bring the elements together rather than have them floating. I filled in the triangular area between the hearts and fans. Then, I carried that triangle shape between the hearts. This brought continuity and gave it a bit of a start effect in the center. Borders of course help provide boundaries. Using the combination of thin and thick borders echoed Striped Heart.

But something was still missing. It didn’t have the wow factor I wanted. Making fancier borders would draw away from the quilt center. So that was not an option. Maybe applique? I wasn’t feeling it. It was the blank space in the center that was drawing my eye and it felt empty. I searched for blocks that may compliment my design. It needed to pull from existing elements rather than add a new one, which would muddle things. I found the perfect block in the oddest of places – Contemporary Pieced – Frames. The block is called Odd Fellows Chain Frame. It provided the continuity I wanted with a dash of fancy for the center.

The color choices were also a bit of fun. I like using Hoffman Watercolors for their tone on tone quality. The reds from light to dark are Strawberry Daiquiri, Flame, and Garnet.

With the Striped Hearts (Love), the Louvered Fan (Fanning), and the Flame fabric, the perfect name seemed to be “Fanning the Flames of Love”! It is the perfect sentiment for spreading love this month.

Happy Quilting!