"January Thaw"—typical winter conditions—except on my
driveway. There snow became black ice. Thawing a little in time for the nightly freeze.
As I write, a glance outside reveals a dull gray
pall reminding us that more winter will come. These
days are perfect for reading about, planning for,
and starting something quilted. Choose bright, happy
colors to lift your spirit, and a simple pattern,
easy to assemble. Easy to follow designs are
9-patch, 9-patch improved, Mock Log Cabin, a 9-patch
variation. An Amish design,
"Square-in-a-Square," is easy to assemble
and can be done in plain colors (Amish) or
combination of print and plain fabric.
Avoid dark and dull colors and fabrics that are
difficult to work with—sheer, knit, polyester, and
silks. Personally, I use "eye" appeal in
Quilting magazines and quilt class instructors
use color wheels to teach color selections for
quilted projects. Alex Anderson, teacher, designer,
lecturer says, "It’s not whether you like a
particular color. It is simply a matter of
understanding how various colors work
together." Ms. Anderson lists three basic color
combination, complementary, triadic, and analogous.
Complementary colors are opposite on the color
wheel; such as, red and green. Triadic colors; such
as red, green, and yellow, are determined by placing
an equilateral triangle over the color wheel.
Analogous color appear next to each other on the
color wheel; orange, orange-yellow, and yellow. The
purchase of a color wheel is a good investment if
you have trouble selecting colors for your quilt.
Art supply stores, school supply stores and some
quilt shops carry color wheels.
I would like to add a fourth color combination to
the age-old basic three. I would call it abstract
color design. In the quilt art of newer quilters, it
appears the "picture" they want is
obtained by using color combinations other than the
basic three. The effects are shocking and dramatic,
interesting and sometimes pleasing.