Last week, I had a chance to wander my favorite fabric store in the world. It's local and called Superbuzzy. They have fabrics that I see online and dream about - except in real life so I can touch them, play with them and eventually buy them right there (feels like magic).
I went in with the intent to find fabrics for the baby girl quilt I have been excited to get started on. I didn't exactly have a color scheme in mind but knew I'd lean towards pinks and corals. Trouble was, I hadn't exactly decided on a pattern idea either. Triangles felt right for a baby, but I wanted something a bit different than all the triangle quilts I had made in the past.
I browsed their quilting books in the back of the store until I found an adorable equilateral triangle quilt (like this one)made up of small triangles of various kid-friendly patterned fabrics. Seeing it made me realize how cute it could look and I started to walk around the store to see what sort of patterns I could pull together.
I get a lot of questions about how I pick and match patterns for quilts. I don't know exactly how to answer that. The patterns make sense in my head in a way that I cannot describe, but here is what I will say about these specifically.
- I love each of the 12 patterns on their own. If I found a dress, leggings or a onesie with ANY of these designs, I'd snag it in a second for baby girl. The whole is greater than the sum of it's parts, but you should still love the parts.
- I tend to favor small patterns over big ones. This just works in my head and works for quilts where you only see a little patch of the fabric at a time.
- I always add in a few subtler patterns (like the textured solids or the tight orange hash marks) so your eyes don't cross trying to take in all the pattern action.
- I go for a mix of light backgrounds and dark backgrounds so the quilt has "weight" but isn't so heavy that it looses it's joy.
- I look for colors that complement but are not the exact same. I would never use two different pattern pinks where the pink shade is identical (though I am not as concerned about matching neutrals, like the grays in this quilt). To me, that's too matchy-matchy.
It just takes time. Time at home to cultivate your style and realize what you really like versus what is just trendy versus what you think you should like. And then time in the store, mulling over bolts of fabric and shifting things around.
In the end, I bought 1/4 yard of 12 different fabrics. This means I have three total yards for the top of my quilt. The fabrics averaged $10/yard so I got out of there for $33 with tax which felt like a total deal (for a personalized baby quilt.)
Fabric brands, from left to right : Riley Blake Willow - Herringbone, Moda Cross Weave - Red Yellow, Kei-fabric Honeycomb, unknown, Lotta Jansdotter, Riley Blake Willow - Leaves, no brand name but can be found here, Flea Market Fancy - Fizzy Dot, Riley Blake Willow - Dot, Kaffe Fasset Shot Cotton - Apricot, Japanese Fabric - unkown brand, Carolyn Friedlander Architextures - Hatch.
At home, I cut my fabrics into triangles that were about 4.5 inches (I got about 26-30 from each fabric pattern). My plan is to make this quilt about 45x60, like so many of the other quilts I have made. I don't have exact details yet on how many triangles this is going to take to get it that size. But I know I'll have enough fabric. I am excited to be working with slightly smaller triangles (though I know the sewing will be tedious).
After I started laying it all out and then stepped back to see it, I almost cried. Such a fan of this color mix.
ps. I'll be sharing more details on how I made this quilt when it's finished, but here's a quilt tutorial that includes details about all the tools I use to cut and sew fabric.