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Border Crisis [Sep. 9th, 2012|08:46 pm]
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With the borders all cut and partially pieced, with one of them sewn onto the quilt, I had a crisis of faith about the colors I’d chosen for them. The green was too vivid, too strong combined with the focus fabric. I didn’t like the way it drew the eye. It clashed with the center of the quilt.

Too bright:
Holly borders green

I stopped working on assembling the borders and spent a few days mentally dithering, and then spent a fretful morning with the quilt laid out on the bed, debating if I should tear out all the work I’d done and try reds instead, vexed about using yet another red since there wasn’t enough of what I’d used before on hand.

Too dull:
Holly borders red

I was standing over the quilt, biting my lip and laying out red scraps, when DH stopped me.

“It looks fine with the green,” he said gently. “Take a break and come back to it.”

We went out for a walk and when we came back I had an inspiration. What I didn’t like about the green in the border was the brightness. What if, instead of taking green away, I added some? A thin strip of darker green as a second border might work. I folded a little of the dark green and gold fabric into a strip and laid it on the border edge. That narrow strip of darker green and gold really did the trick; the darker green tamed that bright green and the metallic gold added richness, like a gilded frame for this formal and ornate quilt.

Here’s the final design decision, complete with feline “helper”. The dark green outer border needs to be just a little narrower, but otherwise I really like this; it’s more interesting than an all-red border and less garish than the bright green by itself.

Just right:
Holly borders final

Click the photos to get a larger view.  And don't forget to check out what other quilters are wrestling with on Judy Laquidara’s Design Wall Monday.


From: Jean-sophie Wood
2012-09-11 10:55 pm (UTC)

It's magic

The effect of adding that darker green border is like magic. Now that lighter/brighter green looks right and makes the quilt sparkle.
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[User Picture]From: catlinye_maker
2012-09-11 11:08 pm (UTC)

Re: It's magic

Isn't it? Amazing the difference just a little frame makes. I never would have thought that the answer to "I don't like that green" would be "add more green!"
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