Have you ever walked into a fabric shop, knowing exactly what you wanted, only to leave with something entirely different??? I know I have and frustrating as it might be, there’s a reason behind the insanity…..it appears to be our mood! What a relief as here all along I was thinking I just got overly excited seeing other fabrics and lost my train of thought!! Nope, it seems it just might have been my mood.
Psychologists have been saying for years that we need to choose colors that help us feel good (aka our mood), rather than following design trends. The same holds true for choosing fabric; the fabric colors and designs we pick, may add energy to our mood or simply create a tranquil feeling within ourselves. For instance:
– “soft blue” colors are soothing colors that can help lower stress levels,
– “orange” is considered a shade that expands creativity and is energizing,
– “red” stimulates energy and our appetites (just what I need),
– “green” can evoke composure and tranquility,
– “purple” has long been related to royalty and can also help stimulate the creative side of the brain, and
– “yellow” stimulates conversation and makes our thoughts more focused.
Our choice of color can also be influenced by the change of the “season”; like spring brings about light pastel colors, summer brings warmer and deeper colors, fall comes along with those deep gorgeous rich mixtures of all the colors, and last, winter creates those soft, clean “bleak” colors.
Recently I read an article about Roberta Horton, who was one of the pioneers of the quilt renaissance in California in the early 1970’s. She said every piece of fabric has three characteristics that need to be considered: color, value, and pattern. In her book, which is out of print, The Fabric Makes the Quilt, Roberta provides six tips on color that I want to share with you:
– Every color is good,
– Colors don’t have to be used in equal amounts,
– Use colors together that mismatch so that they will read as individual pieces,
– Don’t worry about color schemes,
– Warm colors come toward you and cool colors recede,
– and finally, the greater the number of colors on a fabric, the busier it will be perceived.
While those tips are “sinking in”, I want to share some posts from a few of my very talented bloggy friends, that talk about fabric, color, value, etc. You might want to take a few and check them out.
– For quilting, check out Doreen at Treadlemusic. Her magic fingers combined with her “Ms. Sweetie”, produces some amazing “free motion” machine quilting. Her choice of design and thread brings every quilt that she touches to life! In What’s Better than… post I think she used the perfect design. Don’t forget – this is all FMQ!
– Now if you’re a designer or love to piece, Melanie at Catbird Quilt Studio loves to design medallion quilts that are simply colorful and stunning. Of all the many blogs she’s written, Fairy Border 3 provides detailed information on color and value – a must read for anyone that quilts.
– For those of you that love to weave, farm and quilt, TextileRanger at Deep in the Heart of Textiles, is fabulous at understanding color. She collects plants to make her own dyes for wool dying before weaving. This post talks about what type of plants make which colors. Don’t forget to check out her quilts as they reflect color, color, color!
One final thought…remember to take time to browse the store and let the fabric speak to you, but most importantly…. know your mood before you shop!,