I usually don't like surprises. I'm afraid I won't like what I'm surprised with, or that it won't be exactly what I would have bought for myself. The same is true with me and fabric. To get that guarantee that all the fabrics in a quilt go together, I've been using pre-cuts and yardage from the same line. It's a safe way to get a well-balanced look in a quilt. But I love to use batiks. Since most batiks bleed, I must be able to pre-wash them, which is impossible with pre-cuts. So, I use a limited number of batik fabrics in a project, and agonize over selecting ones that coordinate with each other. Thankfully, there is a little collection of color cards that are a big help to me. If you are color-challenged, check out the Ultimate 3-in-1 Color Tool by Joen Wolfrom. It is a big help at the quilt store, and I'm usually pleased with the results.
Lately, I've been wanting to make one of Jenny Doan's easy, scrappy quilts with batiks, but have been thwarted by the idea of finding a myriad of fabrics to work with. Lucky me! Batiks Etc has been having a Fat Quarter Frenzy (20 fat quarters for $30). So, I just sucked it up and ordered a bundle online! Scary, for sure, trusting a total stranger to pick 20 fabrics for me, but I could get 20 fabrics and not have to select a single one. I told them that I like cool colors, and which colors I like the best and just waited to see what I would get. Well, today the happy collection showed up in my mailbox and I am very pleased with them! Whoever had the job of picking out the fat quarters did a wonderful job!
Seems like a lot of us quilters want to be in control of our fabric choices - at least most of the time. My hunch is that many of us need to be in control of other things in our lives, as well. Maybe it's time for us to learn to relax a little, and trust someone else to make a fabric choice for us. We might be pleasantly surprised.
Have a great week! Now, let's go quilt something.