How I work/ Part 2/ Color and size.

Once  I am done my research and thinking I have to begin the physical process of starting a quilt.
I usually have an idea of what size and shape I would like a piece to be. And I normally block off that size on my wall. It gives me boundaries and a starting place.  I use black stiff binding tape and I try to get my top line as level as possible. I actually use an a construction level to make sure the horizontals are really horizontal- although I confess that by the time I am done- I often can not see my original lines.... but it is a start.  I do this whether the pieces are going to be large or small.

Then the fun part begins- I get to audition  fabric colors. I spend a fair amount of time looking at fabrics from my stash. Sometimes I may need a certain color so I will put an order into my dyer- but usually I have lots of color on hand. I normally take swatches of a lot more colors than I think I will use and I will pin the swatches up on the wall to see how the colors look both up close and far away. This is actually just a narrowing process. A lot of the time I will think that there is not enough contrast or too much and pieces come off the wall and others get attached. Once I have a general idea I will pin up large pieces to see how the colors look in large swaths. I do not work with small pieces so it is important to see how the fields of color really look.

I can play around with large pieces of fabric for hours. But at a certain point I stop and leave the room for an hour and will come back and reevaluate the color choices to see if I really am still happy. I also start to re-pin my selections to see how they look adjacent to different colors.
Once I have my palette established I generally put all of those colors in a separate bin, and put the "rejected" colors in another bin since I may want to change up colors once I start.  I am pretty fastidious about cleaning up before I start cutting and designing- so all the fabric I am sure I will not use gets put away for another day.

by JudyK