“Not another mystery”, you say. “We haven’t seen the final results of the last ones.”
And you are correct. But the Muscat Quilt group, of which I was a member for too short a time, is running one, and I’m joining in with the friends I left there. It helps to know someone on the planning committee. I’ve really missed the social aspect of quilting since I moved to Norway, and this is one way to solve the problem.
The mandate was to pick two fabrics, small even prints or mottled tones, that display a good sharp contrast. The suggested amount – four meters of each. Sounds pretty easy. Or maybe not. Fabric is pretty expensive here, so I didn’t envision going out and buying eight meters of fabric any time soon. Good thing we hadn’t packed up yet, and my trusty stash was still fully shelved (and boxed). Even so, four meters wasn’t easy to come by. With the possibility of not seeing my quilting machine and frame for a long time due to our imminent move, Jo’s idea of a table cloth made sense. So I could look at shorter pieces of fabric as well.
When I was first getting my sewing room in order for moving, I chose a green/red print that I’ve had a very long time and a pale yellow that had very slight variations in the colour…. but somehow, I wasn’t satisfied. You see, there was something about the green print that I didn’t like, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. So, as time drew closer to the unveiling of the first clue, I scoured the shelves again in search of something else. I came up with several that I liked –
But there were problems – two large a pattern, not enough contrast, lines instead of an all-over print. After taking dozens of photos, trying to get the colours to show true, I polled my friends, not to have them make the choice for me, but just give me feedback. It sure is good to have friends you can trust to tell it straight in a clinch situation like this.
When I took a good hard look at that green print, I discovered that the tiny dots were sort of lime green, not yellow. I found a perfect match, and one that had some life to it. Still – the red, or the green.
I washed the green fabric (I don’t wash it as it comes into the house), and then I discovered WHY I wasn’t so keen on it before. With the sizing washed out, that stiff-as-a-board yardage turned into the most beautiful, soft fabric – a pleasure to touch and to look at. I chose the green.
Finally today, after promising myself to sew instead of sort and tidy and then sorting through all the kitchen cupboards anyway, I did my calculations to see how many blocks a table cloth would require and went up to clean. off the cutting table. I cut out the pieces for fifteen blocks of the green…. and then I cut one block’s worth of pieces of the red.
I guess it’s not hard to see where the contrast and life are, although the red would make a very pretty table cloth. I think I may do a whole table cloth in the greens, and just one block in the red, maybe for a table topper.
The real mystery, I’m thinking, is not what fabric to use, or what the quilt will look like when it is completed. The REAL mystery is why I spend so much time thinking about sewing and so little time actually doing it when I love doing it so very, very much.
I’m going to work on that one, but if anyone has a few hints as to my problems with photographing colour in fabrics, I’d sure love to hear from you.