Friday, August 29, 2014

It's a Colorful Life

If there were more hours in the day, I'd create a blog on color like some of the other inspirational sites on the web that produce color story images like the one above. Since my schedule doesn't seem to be cooperating, I try to occasionally post photos that contain color combinations that inspire me.

The color story above is one that I think is really successful and I wanted to share because I think you'll agree that, if you like the colors, this family would be a great one to try in a quilt or other creative project. The thing that really makes this story successful to me, beyond the selection of the colors, is their relative values. They belong together in the same collection. This is like a soft and muted version of the colors I chose for my Lily's Garden Spice colorway:

In this color story, I worked to keep the same value across the colors, even though these are definitely deeper shades of the colors in the top image.

Although I really like the colors in the image below, the dark green is not working for me in the value shown. It stands out as being too deep a shade for the other colors selected and I would have pulled a green of relative value for that position. I think that a shade somewhere between the lighter and darker green, and a comparable value would have made this story more successful.

I adjusted the dark green in the image below and, personally, I feel the story works now. It's subtle, but it's like I just needed to "take the edge off" of the dark green to bring it into the same family of colors as the others.

As a designer, I feel as though I naturally extract the color stories from images I see, much like what has been done with these photos. Those who like what I do often refer to the colors I use in my fabric collections and quilt projects as the reason for their appeal or success.

If you who struggle with coordinating colors and want my advice, here you go: try to see the "families" of colors in the images you're drawn to because it's probably the relationship of those colors that is appealing and inspiring to you...just like all of the images on sites like Design Seeds and Photo Card Boutique. If you're feeling like you're stuck in a color rut, these sites can be a great source of color solutions and inspiration.

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  1. Great advise...I so appreciate your input and love those colors!!!!

  2. I checked out your blog post yesterday, but didn't look at the sites you linked to until today. I'm glad I waited! Today's design inspiration on Design Seeds was right up my alley! Although if I use it, I might be accused of being stuck in a color rut! :-D

    I tend to pick a medium to large scale print for my first fabric for a project and then use the color dots on the selvedge to help me pick coordinating colors. I may have to start checking out the color inspiration sites now! Thanks for the links!

  3. Love this color palette, it is perfect for a garden quilt, or something to make for a soothing home and country design... Your ideas are great, and I appreciate the links... I would have the tenancy to take this color palette, and add a spring one to it, with florals, and make up a big project with it. Thanks... Hope you pick up your blog again soon.