‘Swedish’ Hearts Block Progress

I’m working on a lap quilt for my mum.  It’s not been coming together well at all!  I know what block I want to use – a heart block that looks like Swedish hearts we used to make for the Christmas tree.  I was going to use bright rainbow colours on a white background, however my husband knows my mum likes Japanese fabrics so thought using some of my red and blue Japanese fabrics would be nice.

Here are the first blocks; I didn’t feel they were quite right from the start:
Another day, another new project. I think these colours are too dark. #qulting

I wasn’t understanding what was wrong but knew it was the contrast within  the block.  My friend Cathy told me a good way to see this; looking at them in black and white reveals what was wrong:
Investigating contrast #qulting

The deep red and deep blue tones were just too close and didn’t bring enough contrast within the block to see the pattern. This would be true with all the reds and blues I had. So I tried adding a medium grey for contrast within the block
Hearts with medium tones - Colour

This helped a bit, but still didn’t feel right. I attempted to add some more colour:
I'm still not sure I'm feeling the love for these fabrics using this block. #qulting

(BTW I didn’t realise until today that there was something else wrong with half the blocks above; can you spot it?)

Although I liked the blocks, I didn’t like them with the other blocks. So I decided to try playing with just the red and blues, but this time with slight metallic fabrics:

Hearts Blocks - black and white

Hearts Blocks – black and white to check the contrast

Hearts Blocks - colour

Hearts Blocks – colour

Hearts Blocks - detail with a hint of silver

Hearts Blocks – detail with a hint of silver

Hearts Blocks - detail with a hint of gold

Hearts Blocks – detail with a hint of gold

Hearts Blocks - reds with goldl

Hearts Blocks – reds with gold

I think these reds would look lovely with the gold. So what to do? Where to go? Keep going with reds and blues? Do it just red/gold or just blue/silver and grey? Do something else entirely?! Grow a beard and go into hiding?!

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