Passion for a creative endeavor is an interesting beast. For me personally, I have it bad. Real bad. I think about sewing projects, quilt designs, color combinations, and want-to-make-lists 24/7. In addition, I own and work every day in a business connected to my creative passion. A delicate balance. Once I figure out the secret to that you’ll be the first to know!
So let’s keep it simple. Some afternoons, after the team has left for the day, I start pulling bolts and just enjoy the fun of matching and stacking and mulling over the possibilities. A quiet time of creative contemplation.
1001 Peeps has sparked this latest exercise in creative imagining. Caitlin LOVED Castles Peeps. It came and went before I even knew what happened. She LOVES 1001 Peeps just as much. Gotta love the mommy-gets-a-second-chance opportunity, how often does that come around ?! Mommy loves 1001 Peeps too so this is going to be fun. So… a new quilt is in the planning stages.
Combine that intro with a comment left on the last post about how I match fabrics for a quilt. I think color matching is pretty personal and we each have our own approach. Here’s my thoughts on the matter:
- I like to start with some base level of color inspiration. This can be an image from a magazine, a picture I’ve taken or a fabric design that I really like. In this example, I asked Caitlin which 1001 Peeps colorway she liked the best. The answer was ‘the orange ones’.
- I take that inspiration piece and begin to assemble colors and textures that play off of it.
- I look for a couple of things when I match to a fabric collection:
What is the general feel of the collection: is it graphic, modern, floral, cute, retro, boyish, frilly, sophisticated, serious?
What is the theme of the color palette: muted, bright, warm, cool?
What is the texture. This is a bit more visceral, does it feel soft or hard, what are the patterns? are they sharp or gentle, what shapes emerge? dots, lines, squares, diamonds, curlicues, organic.
- I then start pulling bolts. Sometimes I know in advance something I’m drawn too and I start with that and see where it takes me. In this case I knew I wanted some of the Laura Gunn Painter’s Canvas prints. There were some colors that I knew would work well and I thought the ‘feel’ of the texture would be a great fit with 1001 Peeps. A merging of artistic styles.
- Basic Grey’s Grunge fabrics were next on the list. They add an additional texture to the mix. I also like that each Grunge color is a unique combination of colors. I chose base colors that accented 1001 Peeps and then brought in a coordinating color. Dauphine is a mix of a Raisin base, dark chocolate strokes and a haze of gray/stone. Hot Cocoa is a mix of a Cocoa base with dark chocolate strokes and a smattering of bluish/red-orange overlays.
- I pulled in the Patrick Lose Brown print for color and shape. It mimics the lamp print in 1001 peeps and has a fabulous mix of dark chocolate brown/orange-ish cocoa brown colors.
- Finally, I look at the solids. I often begin by color matching directly to a print in the collection. In this case, I wanted to echo the orange, blue and gray/sand colors. A few points on this:
Blue is important here because it only appeared in one print but it adds a layer of color that really makes the ensemble pop. Step back and imagine if the blue wasn’t there. Everything would be too flat. The blue makes it SING. This is VERY IMPORTANT to me when I’m pulling in coordinating fabrics. I often look to the quiet color that is sitting in the background and make sure to play off of that and highlight it. In a quilt this is very important. It will move the eye around the design (same with texture).
The Orange lent itself to lots of possibilities. I chose to go deep and dramatic. Again, there’s a certain POP that a solid will add if it’s bold and saturated.
Neutrals keep things melodic. It’s the supporting actor. The workhorse that never gets mentioned. The genius that will keep everything else balanced and looking its best. I add this type of solid at the end. I lay the bolt over the whole pile, step back, and make sure it looks pleasing to my eye. If it clashes in any way I keep looking. It really needs to melt into the color palette otherwise it’ll be distracting.
From top to bottom:
Free Spirit Solids Tango (LOVE that name!)
Lizzy House 1001 Peeps Illuminate Purple (not in the colorway I started with but I LOVED this design and this color!)
Not in picture: Moda Bella Solids Stone (shown in first photo of the post, this was the final neutral solid that I added to my pile)
Now I have to figure out what quilt pattern I’d like to use. I usually pick the fabrics before the pattern. What do you suggest!? This will be a twin sized quilt.