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Thread: Color?

  1. #1
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    I have been watching this board for a while now and have come to the conslusion that alot of what makes a quilt pretty, beautiful, or gorgeous are your color combinations. Seems like most of you can take the simplest pattern and make it stand out by your color combinations. Mine on the other hand are .........yawnable, if there is such a word. I've got the light, medium, and dark down, but how do you decide which colors will "pop"? Please let me in on the secret. Apparently color coordinating wasn't one of the genes I picked up.

  2. #2

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    I so know what you are talking about. Whenever I go shopping for fabric, I take my daughter along to help me choose the colours. Just can't seem to get it together like some of the beautiful combinations I see on here.

  3. #3
    Senior Member cowpie2's Avatar
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    I am so much like you on this. I always try to take some other person with me when I am purchasing colors. My son - who hates to shop and knows if he points to a bad one that I buy he'll have to go back with me is best. But friends or anyone will do. If I need three colors, I can find two and never the third, etc. etc.

    I recently made a quilt for a friend fighting cancer and took 2 friends with to pick out the fabric. I needed three each of two different colors. In less than 5 minutes the two friends had picked out all 6 and they all played nice together in the quilt. It would have taken me two hours and I would have ended up with at least 2 clunkers.

  4. #4
    Senior Member DMotyl's Avatar
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    Our quilt shop has at least one class in color so you definitely are not alone.

  5. #5
    Senior Member DMotyl's Avatar
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    Plus an advantage to using a local quilt shop has been their assistance in helping choose colors...

  6. #6
    Super Member TonnieLoree's Avatar
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    Distance really does make a difference in your fabric selections. I line them up in a cart, then walk over an aisle away. When I take that farther look, the ones that do not belong, will pop out at you. They also make a de-magnifying glass that will provide that distance if there is not enough room for a spacial viewing.

    Since I now have a portable design wall, I can audition my stash fabrics from across the room. The "stinkers" for this project just might be the "rose" for the next one.

  7. #7
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    Practice, practice, practice, and your color choices will improve. I couldn't match fabrics at all when I started quilting. Some people are born with the gift, but others (like me) have to work at it. Color from the Heart, by Gai Perry, is an excellent book to help with color.

    http://www.amazon.com/Color-Heart-Se...2106394&sr=8-1

  8. #8
    Super Member quiltsRfun's Avatar
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    Choose a print you like. Then look at the selvedge to see if it has those little color dots. This will show you all the colors used in the print and they're designed to look good together. Also, some paint stores have color cards with coordinating colors schemes. Use these as a reference.

  9. #9
    Super Member dakotamaid's Avatar
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    That is why I copy pic of color combinations that strike me and put in a folder on my computer. I can always go back and search for inspiration.:) Many of my saved photos are from this board.

  10. #10
    Super Member katier825's Avatar
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    It's not just colors that make the quilt. The scale of the designs also make a difference. Too many of a large print and they compete with each other (unless you use plain sashing). Too many of a small scale or solid can be boring. You need to mix them up. Use some of each color and scale for variety. To get ideas on colors, look at the designer collections. You can get ideas of what looks good together.

  11. #11
    RST
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    Here's a blog with lots of great color inspirations. http://www.design-seeds.com/ Just scan through it, find some that speak to you, and create a folder (or print out) those palettes for future inspiration. From there, you can either work from your stash or buy fabrics that will go with that collection of colors.

    Another way to come up with current and pleasing color selections is to use magazines or catalogs -- look for colors you like, and the combinations that are currently seen a lot in decor.

    A third way -- use some of the pre-cut collections as the base colors for a quilt, pulling in the same tones from your stash until you feel more confident yourself. The jelly roll and charm sqare collections of fabrics already coordinate nicely, and most often, they are popular colors that tend to work well with home furnishings currently in stores.

    Mostly, don't be afraid of color, and be willing to be wrong once in a while. In my opinion, most quilters make the mistake of playing color too safe and matchy matchy. The other common mistake, and one I often fall into myself is not having enough "white space" -- not necessarily white literally, but neutral, calm spaces that allow the design areas to shine.

    RST
    RST

  12. #12
    Senior Member lyndaloo's Avatar
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    OMG!!! I had no idea why those dots were on the selvedge! I do pick blenders to match the colors in the print, though.

    Thanks for some interesting info!

  13. #13
    Senior Member DMotyl's Avatar
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    I agree that practice will help me....

  14. #14
    Senior Member craftyone27's Avatar
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    Not sure if it is still available - but - a few years back I bought a lovely little gadget at Sherwin Williams called a fandex. It is one of those fans with all the paint colors like you see at the paint counter in the stores. At the time it was about $10 and well worth it. I can look at the colors in my house in the room I plan to use them and know they are going to march perfectly. Works with fabric colors too!!

  15. #15
    Super Member sewcrafty's Avatar
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    Here's a site that's fun to play with:

    http://colorschemedesigner.com/

  16. #16
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sewcrafty
    Here's a site that's fun to play with:

    http://colorschemedesigner.com/
    Thank you for sharing this with us, what a great site :D:D:D

  17. #17
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quiltsRfun
    Choose a print you like. Then look at the selvedge to see if it has those little color dots. This will show you all the colors used in the print and they're designed to look good together...
    I do this. I have made quilts with these colors and not used the inspiration fabric, just used it for color selection.

  18. #18
    Super Member DogHouseMom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lyndaloo
    OMG!!! I had no idea why those dots were on the selvedge! I do pick blenders to match the colors in the print, though.

    Thanks for some interesting info!
    ROFL - while it's a nice thought that they put those dots there to help quilters pick coorinating colors, but that's not the reason they are there. It's part of the printing process, they're color registers. Every color on the fabric uses a different print plate, printed one at a time. The dots tell the operator that he has the plate registered correctly on the fabric.

  19. #19
    Super Member charmpacksplus's Avatar
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    1. Contrast (light and dark, not too many mediums
    2. Complementary colors (see color wheel)
    3. Black or white (you said you wanted it to pop!)

    When I go to a quilt show I always pick one quilt that jumps out at me. It's usually one with only two or three fabrics, and lately those fabrics have been solids.

  20. #20
    rb.
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    I bought Jinny Beyer's book Color Confidence for Quilters. I highly recommend it. There are tips in there I haven't seen elsewhere. Left on my own, I see colours in my brain that look great together, but in reality they look really bad. LOL

  21. #21
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    Thanks for all your help. I knew I could count on you!

  22. #22
    Power Poster MadQuilter's Avatar
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    Maybe you have just been drawn to the neutrals. Now that you see the other options, your creativity is blossoming. Just wait and see what you will come up with. Give yourself a chance.

  23. #23
    Super Member pollyjvan9's Avatar
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    Use a color opposite on the color wheel to add that "pop" factor.

  24. #24
    Super Member AliKat's Avatar
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    I made myself use colors I really don't like: lime green, orange, and other such colors. I had to force myself to buy them. Guess what? After that I had no problem using different colors because that quilt was awesome. It was a child's quilt because it was easier to start with.

    I also used my EQ when I taught a beginning quilting class so students could have a line drawing of their quilts and then color them in. Each one used different colors and all turned out great.

    Going to quilt show also helps. You can see how others use color and scale of print to make their quilts. and ... of course you might see some quilts that absolutely turn you off. Going over what you like and don't like about the quilts will help you a lot. Just, please, if you don't like a quilt keep your opinions to yourself so you don't hurt someone's feelings.

    ali

  25. #25
    Super Member Grandma58's Avatar
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    I choose colors by how they make me feel. Do they move me in some way or not. The nots do not get used.

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