Making a quilt, part 1

I’ve been encouraged to share how I make my quilts.  Most of what I do is fairly intuitive, so I’m interested to see how well I can give form to the process.

Every quilt starts with fabric choices, which means heading to the fabric store or the stash.  I store my stash in two bins below my cutting board, with warm colors (yellow, orange and red) in one, and cool colors (purple, blue, and green) in the other.  I’ve got a third bin for storing neutrals and projects in progress, and the top bin holds scraps.

My fabric stash

My fabric stash

Today I want to make a green and yellow piece, so I’ve pulled out a bunch of fabrics to audition.  I’m going for green, yellow green, and yellow, and I want a range of value, from very light to dark/medium dark.  In general, yellow has a lighter value than green, but if I work it right, I’ll have some greens that are lighter than some yellows.  I can’t stress how important it is to have a good range of value in a quilt.  They say value does all the work, and color gets all the credit.  It’s true.

First choices

First choices

I’ve decided to remove a few fabrics.  The two greens below don’t have much movement and are monotone with white, so I don’t think they’ll give me the look I want.  (I might revisit the lightest one on the left.)  The peacock feather in the middle has the perfect amount of movement and color changes, but it is far too blue.  It would be great in another quilt, but not this one.  And, looking at the photo above, I think the top left fabric reads to pink for this quilt, so that’s going to be removed, too.

Rejected fabric choices

These ones aren’t going in – for now

There are a couple of other fabrics that I’m still unsure of, but for now, they’ll stay in the pile and I’ll probably make blocks with them.  Whether those blocks make it in this quilt, well, we’ll see.  I might end up throwing in a little bit of orange, too, just for fun.  But for now, here’s what I have.

Final (?) fabric choices, stacked by value

Final (?) fabric choices, stacked by value

Now I’m off to start cutting these lovely fabrics!  I’ll cover that and the sewing of blocks in the next post.

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One thought on “Making a quilt, part 1

  1. I have a similar “audition” process around my beadwork, putting lots of colors together and then removing some until the right ones remain to play.

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