"Tip Tuesday!" - How to Mix Fabric Patterns
I love learning new things and then sharing that knowledge with my quilting friends. So, every Tuesday I'll provide some tips, hints, tricks, tutorials, shortcuts, etc. that I've learned over the years and share them here on the blog.
"Tip Tuesday" will be a collection of information about a wide variety of subjects garnered from a large variety of sources. I am not an expert by any means and do not take credit for being the great wizard behind all of these hints and tips. I will gladly give due credit whenever possible.
These tips will be archived and accessible to you just by clicking on the "Tip Tuesday" tab above.
Read, enjoy, and be inspired!
What is the most challenging thing about quilt for you?
For me, it used to be picking fabrics. I often struggled with making a pattern "my own" and simply purchased fabric that was almost exactly like the one the pattern cover or the sample hanging in a shop. After a while, I tried to stretch myself and pick my own fabrics, but often found that it was too "matchy matchy," safe, and quite honestly, boring. I wanted to be bold in my choices but was too afraid to do it. After all, if I chose fabrics that didn't "work" together, I'd be wasting a lot of money.
A number of years ago, probably 15 or so, Jack and I walked into an area quilt shop and he said that he signed my up for a mystery quilt class. What?!?!? Talk about being out of my comfort zone! To top it off, he then proceeded to tell me that he already bought all the fabric. Between my shock and horror (yes, I admit that I was scared of what he chose), I asked if he had seen the quilt before he picked the fabric. He said no, but that he spoke with the owner and she helped him pick the "supporting fabrics" after he chose his focus fabric.
When I saw the pile of fabric he picked out, I didn't know what to think. Everything was bright and there were lots of different designs and patterns. In retrospect, I realize that I had made a lot of quilts up to that point that had one or two "patterned" fabrics and everything else was a solid or Moda Marble. (Yawn!)
That class was a definite learning experience and the beginning of a fabric journey that has been fun and scary all at the same time.
I am not an expert and I will never be a color theorist; but, I do like to mix and match fabric patterns and colors. I don't always hit the mark, but I love the experiment. I still tend to be somewhat safe, but I do try to step back and push myself a little. My sister Ann and brother Jerry are amazing at choosing fabric; and between them and Jack, I am learning to go with my gut feeling.
I found a blog that has a really good post about choosing fabrics and mixing patterns. I think it's worth the read.