Thursday, October 29, 2015

Auditioning fabrics

Hello, everyone.

I have noticed that a lot of people who quilt online seem to start with a particular fabric design and use its brandmates to make a quilt. They make a lot of lovely quits, table toppers, and so on by this method.

My method comes out of the scrappy-quilt universe. I pick a general theme: unisex baby, in the case of the mathematical tesselating quilt, and the general idea of the piecing and then start auditioning fabrics to join the project.

Fabric auditions for the mathematical quilt looked like this, in part:
I was in love with the peacock feathers and wanted something bright (to stimulate Baby's mind) and cheerful, that would work for either a boy or a girl.

I didn't use this boat design, but it was cute. The other color selection ended up in my Cafe Press shop on a couple of items.

Settled on tessellating design instead. The blue X marks are where the tessellation doesn't carry through. This stage was followed by several days of on-floor placement tests before the squares were labeled with their places in the grid and sewn together.
Quilt in use, some several months back.
Now I'm auditioning fabrics that will play well with the bright, cheerful Michael Miller Modern Basics charms I received. (Thanks, folks!)

These little blue birdies play nicely with the dots and houndstooths in blue. Possibly I could use plain black for the other color and call it victory. Or be brave, go for springlike colors and use pink and yellow.

The secondary colors play fairly well together, and then the only issue I find is visual compatibility in the pattern sizes. (Too much similarity in scale is tiring to look at IMHO.)

More playing in the secondary colors. The red is a quasi-solid. The purple is an actual solid.

Trying out a square design. I notice that making the small triangles for the top of the heart reduces the overall square size considerably. The red and white, though, go well with the small hearts pattern and the white on white fabric. Maybe I'll do the primary colors in hearts like this. The dots play better as the bottom of the heart than the houndstooth. Must consider more!
And that's where things are with finding the best use of the lovely charm squares. I am strongly leaning toward using dots and coordinates in the hearts and maybe doing something zigzag or pinwheelish with the houndstooths. The direction change on the heart on the right is a little bit dizzy making otherwise.