Tuesday, April 25, 2017

One Patch Color Theory & Rainbows

 "Tutti Frutti"

The monthly sewing group gathers late this month so I've allowed the studio to fall into chaos before the big clean up midweek. Lots of digging through bins asking, "What's this, and why did I save it?" I delegated things into piles of Move On and Keep. That process led to stacks of fabric piled onto the table, and cut up into piles of 4" squares. 

I've Got This!

I feel a great relief at finally finding a method that works well for me. No more making lots of decisions every time I deal with scrap cutting. KISS: I get as many 4" scraps as possible from a piece of scrap fabric then turn the rest into strips of 3", 2.5", 2", or 1.5". I needed a cut and dried method, and settling on one I could be consistent with was a blessing. These measurements and combinations of are flexible enough to be used in most scrap patterns easily.

Seeing Fabrics In a New Light

One of the biggest surprises I have while cutting fabric is seeing how a print is transformed. A tiny print may come off as a near solid, a geometric as a dot, and a large print can change all together. It's no longer a jumbo sized piece of fruit on fabric I have no idea how to deal with. It's usable. As the saying goes: Ugly fabric cut up small enough is beautiful. Reach that point, and it's fun to base a grouping for a quilt or comforter on color alone.

Tutti Frutti

The design above uses large and medium prints, and several solids. The solid colors do not all follow the rule of being included in one of the prints, nor did I follow a strict pattern. Still it works. The jelly bean looking print and big fruit had me humming the Little Richard song as I worked along, and it's a lively, happy composition. Can you see how the busy jelly bean print recedes into the background beside the solids? 

Seen from across the room those jelly beans are just dots. Squint to see the yellow diamond, and how those pink points at the edges become important in helping to create the circle with the big fruit fabric. I just love the one patch, folks! 

Buried in one of my piles was a gorgeous, bright panel with a black background. I'd held onto it a few years, and thought there must be something special to do with it. After a few tries I gave up, and cut it into 4" squares, too. I selected pieces that contained similar compositions--all floral, black borders, etc., and started building outward. The bright green gave a nice contrast, and helped the yellow flowers to glow. The colors shown above are the truest.

Keeping in the same colorway I built on. I kept adding bits of the panel to keep it interesting. I was afraid that at this point it was feeling too dark.

Just one row of yellow gave a zing of illumination to the whole piece, and I finished it off in like colors.

Yes, it's bright and loud, and almost hard to look at for a long time, but there's something about it I like. And think about all the fabric scraps that are out of my space! Remember, these projects are about using up fabric that isn't particularly your favorite, and the design is based on what's on hand. You have to make some concessions in your normal color choices, but those surprises that result are the real prize.

What a different view from across the room!

Wouldn't this vibrant quilt brighten up the walls 
of a child's playroom?

Breaking Down Rainbows

We had a swift and heavy storm come through Gnadenhutten the other night. This was the view as the rainbow arced over the Heckewelder Moravian Church. You can see the bands of color rather clearly when it's right in front of you. ROY G BIV moves from the outer bands in.

But from farther away, you see the extent of the rainbow from one end to the other. It not the individual bands you pick out, but the overall glory you enjoy. How interesting!

Come on, Doxie girls.
Let's go sew.

*These are designs done for Mennonite Christian Committee's Connections Thrift Store in Kidron, Ohio, and are available for sale in the store.


Unknown said...

I think "one patch" patterns is unlimited!! Such great creativity is unleashed! Again - you inspire me!

Angie in SoCal said...

Love all these one patchers. That last one looks like tiles. Great job, Julie

Stitchin At Home said...

Each one you do I can the growth of skill and confidence. Way to go Julie!

Kate @ Smiles From Kate said...

I have been coming to the realisation that I will start using my scraps when I cut them into manageable sizes, rather than them being a hodge podge of odd shapes in a jumble. It's a great lesson in using up fabric, maybe I can use up all the old stuff I always reject if it were in a manageable size.

Kate said...

Beautiful one patch projects. Very helpful lessons in color theory and scrap usage. Hopefully your scrap bins are getting at least a bit less full.