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Monday, July 24, 2006

1930 Crazy Quilt Block Step 2

Yesterday, I decided to help teach begining crazyquilters how to use color and embellishments to balance a block.

Chosing your focal point is the first step as this will lay the path for your color choices. Working with a focal point helps to take the guess-work out of your piece. This way, you won't be sitting around wondering where to start or what to do. You can be stitching instead!

Anything can be used as a focal point such as a piece of jewelry, a cross stitch motif like the ones I've been doing for the 100 Details In 100 Days project, a SRE motif...the possibilities are endless.

Choose your focal point and then pick your fabrics based on those colors. In this case, my fabrics are based on the vintage hankie print. Red, pink, yellow and blue are the main colors.

Once you have your fabrics ready, you can begin your foundation piecing. I'm not going to spend any time on that step as there are several different ways to do foundation piecing and there are many resources already available for that information.

An excellent book for crazypatch instruction is "The Magic Of Crazy Quilting" by J. Marsha Michler. A good online resource for piecing instructions can be found at Annie Whitsed's website.

As you can see, my piece is ready for stitching. I explained yesterday how I placed my fabric colors so please refer back to that post.

I like to work in what I call layers. Once the foundation piecing is complete the stitching and embellishing is layered onto the block. I start with my lace, my appliques and my fancy trims. In the case of this piece, I chose one Venise lace applique which I used on the left to "frame" that side of the hankie print. To balance the block out on the opposite side, I added piece of straight, flat lace.

As you all know, opposites attract. Or in this case, opposites are attractive. That's the key to balancing a block.

I painted my lace to again, bring the colors out of the hankie print. Do you see how the yellow flowers in the applique brings the yellow flowers out in the hankie print? Can you see the triangle of yellow? Step back from your monitor and you should be able to see the balance. The yellow gingham at the top left, again to the right of the block and then the yellow flowers in the applique to the bottom of the hankie. This is what makes the eye move around the focal point. By creating a "triangle" of color.

More tomorrow....

1 comment:

norththreads said...

Beautiful fabrics here & love your crayon fruit!!

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