the evolution of my Kingfisher palette

Do you start a quilt by choosing the fabrics or choosing a pattern?  I definitely go both ways.  With Kingfisher, I started with the pattern, which Jodi and I had conceptualized months ago.  Knowing I'd be hand-sewing, I wanted to be sure to really LOVE the fabrics.  

Pretty Colorful Fabric Stacks.jpg

I started by pulling a stack of fabrics that made me smile.  I wanted something vibrant and colorful!

Cutting Fabrics for EPP.jpg

Then, I cut 2.5" squares for the hexagon flowers, beginning with all my favorite multicolor prints.  With such a colorful palette, I decided to use solid coordinating colors for the flower center in hopes of harmonizing a bit.

EPP Hexie Flowers.jpg

This is my first group of flower finishes.  At this point the palette is working for me.  I don't think I realized, though, that to continue along this line I'd need to use a monochromatic, understated background.  With all the variety already happening here, the applique background needs to be simple (like my black wooden table).

Fussy cut hexagon flowers.jpg

Now that I have more variety in my finished flowers, they began to feel incoherent.  Some are fussy cut, some are not.  Some are bold, others are soft, small florals.  I love each flower, but I'm not sure that they all belong in one work.

sweet toddler feet.jpg

To sort things out, I made possible color groupings.  These low volume, floral print flowers work well together, for example.

arranging hexagon flowers.jpg

I decided I want to use different fabrics for my diamond-shaped applique backgrounds.  This will allow me to define the diamond shapes and highlight both low value and dark value flowers.  But to go this route, simplifying my color scheme seems my best bet.

Kingfisher palette.jpg

Based on themes in my already-created flowers, I've settled on a purple/red/cool green palette.  I think it has potential, though it could get over-strong if I'm not careful!  Red and green, being opposite colors on the color wheel, have a tendency to shout.  Including purple and emphasizing cool greens should help.  Fingers crossed!

Looking back at my first batch of flowers, I'm sad to leave that color scheme behind.  I think that means I should plan another project that can capitalize on what I had going for me there!  I'll put my thinking cap on.