Pick fabrics that hold a good crease when pressed, and aren’t too thick to fold more
than once. We recommend medium-weight commercial quilting cotton, hand-dyed fabrics
Keep in mind that if a print is the right size, you can adjust your folds so that
the desired portion of the print is on top each time, no fussy cutting required.
And if you’re looking for a scrappy quilt, the folded pieces could each end up showing
a different value/colour, making it look like you used a lot more fabrics.
If you're new to combining colours, here are a couple of suggestions:
When selecting a fabric palette, start with a multicolour print that really appeals
to you. If it’s too big a print to be useful in the blocks, it can be used for borders,
backing, and/or binding. Then choose a group of coordinating and more-or-less monochromatic
prints for piecing the blocks. Another approach is to find a colourful item that
you like, such as the upholstery of your favourite chair or a pretty vase, and select
fabrics in that colour scheme.
Generally, eye-catching quilts include contrasting values and colours. Try selecting
a dark, a medium, a bright and a light in one colour. Or select three colours side
by side on the colour wheel (e.g. soft warm yellow, vibrant medium blue and a rich
green, the colours of forget-me-nots or spring violets). Then, for a shot of colour,
add a reddish purple or an orangey red. Even if you don't usually go for shocking
combinations, in small amounts they can really add kick to the overall impact of
your finished work.
However, if you prefer low-contrast, quieter quilts, the folds add shadows and give
a block depth that a flat block wouldn’t have. Even a selection of white fabrics
can give a pretty effect with this technique.
Larger multicolour printsmake interesting borders, but are trickier to work with.
If your fabric selection is based strongly on value (e.g. cream, rust, and dark chocolate),
including a print with no sharply contrasting values (e.g. a layer of autumn leaves)
can be extremely effective in adding interest to an otherwise simple colour grouping.