Tuesday, 15 May 2007

Need background advice

Having finished my String Star quilt today (pic when it has dried fully), I turned my attention to my next project, which is to finish off a vintage scrappy Lone Star that I purchased in Paducah from an antiques dealer. It is currently set in a hideous pale pink background, which likely used to be a sheet and has strange seams and stains in it, which I felt did nothing for the Lone Star. The Lone Star itself has a slight volcano thing going on in the middle but otherwise is reasonably constructed, but the maker obviously had a few shifts in their scrap bag during the making process and consequently the diamonds of the star are fighting a bit with each other. This makes it very hard to decide what background colour the replacement background should be, and I would appreciate any advice you would care to leave me.

The first colour I tried was this butter-yellow, which I though might bring out the 'provence' colours of the Lone Star. Instead, the bright clear yellow just makes the Lone Star look dirty (which it likely is a bit) as a lot of the fabrics have a vintage tea-colour tinge to them.

Then I tried a darker blue, which I though might throw the star fabrics into more prominence, but again the clear blue colour brings out the dirty acid tinge of the Lone star, plus I think the blue rather overwhelms the star.

So then I thought I should try a paler colour and pinned on this pale blue gingham, as there is a lot of checked fabric in the star itself. But the white in this gingham just makes the star look dirtier than ever and the background doesn't do anything for it.

Then I tried an ecru printed fabric, thinking the beige tone might suit better with the vintage tint of the Lone Star, but again this doesn't do anything for the star. Part of the problem is that there are so many colours and values fighting in the star.

By now I am getting fed up with pinning and unpinning fabric, and even the original wishy-washy pink is starting to look better. Help please! Leave me a comment with your suggestions or opinions.


swooze said...

Well I love the yellow. Could you take a small scrap and try tea dying it to see if it matches better. From the picture it makes everything pop...and I love yellow. Maybe more of a gold woould work as well. Can't wait to see the stripped star!

Kathy Wagner said...

What about black? It might pop all out the colours. I also wondered what a red gingham might look like.
The other thought I had was taking apart the large diamonds to alternate the bright ones with the dull ones...to move the bright colours around more?

Jeanne said...

I agree with Swooze and would pick the yellow. Good luck with it.

Rose Marie said...

This is quite the quilt and you just wonder what the story is behind all the different fabrics and why the person went in this direction. I think it will be gorgeous and definitely 'one-of-a-kind'. You've already decided on the blue and that is probably the best pick.

Quilt crazy said...

I would try a yellow that is a bit more mustard.

Jenni @ Fairybread said...

I too prefer the yellow. Maybe it isn't the perfect yellow for the quilt which is why you're not sure. Maybe take it to the LQS and try out the repro yellows. The yellow seems to me to be more like what the original maker might have used.

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