Michele, thanks for hosting me at Quilting Gallery for the fifth stop on my two-week blog tour! I’m Maria Peagler, award-winning quilter and author, and I’m excited to premiere my new video tutorial here and introduce my revolutionary new way of approaching color in quilting from my eighth book: Color Mastery: 10 Principles for Creating Stunning Quilts.
I’ve had a life-long love affair with color, but I was frustrated with my uneven color results in my quilts: I knew what colors I loved, I just didn’t understand how to make them work together in a quilt. And I didn’t know how to break out and use other colors. I had tried to learn and use the color wheel, but it seemed like a dull, academic way of selecting colors that sucked all the joy out of quilting.
So what changed? I became a watercolor painter, and I had to learn how to use the color wheel. Once I truly understood color theory, I had an enormous “Aha!” moment when I realized quilters needed an entirely different approach to color than other artists: we aren’t mixing two colors to get a third. We are putting colors next to each other on a quilt, through either piecing or applique. So our approach to color should be focused on fabric and color contrast, not on mixing. Much of color theory simply isn’t necessary for quilters – instead, it gets in the way.
I began teaching color classes at my local quilt shop, and found many gorgeous books on color in quilting, but none I could use in class. The projects were too complex and required a six-week course on color. I wanted a one-day class where people could get instant color results and a finished quilt top. So I developed exercises and projects that made the class fun, quick, and playful. Women loved it! It was a big success, and thus the book (my eighth) was born.
I emphasize in Color Mastery the color wheel as a tool: I use it like my rotary cutter or machine quilting discs. It’s not the focus of my quilts, but it makes them far better than if I hadn’t used it at all. The color wheel is an important first step, but not the whole, of the Color Mastery process. And here are four ways the color wheel can transform the color in your quilts:
- it’s a road map to how colors will interact on your quilt
- it gives you unlimited options for innovative color palettes you never would have imagined on my own
- it shows you how to see color the way artists do, in terms of relationships, not absolutes
- it shows you what colors you have in my stash and what you lack
Here’s a short video on how to create your own color wheel from the fabrics already in your stash, and it’s the first exercise I have students do in my classes. I approach making a color wheel in an entirely different way that makes it fun to do. And here’s a special offer for Quilting Gallery readers:
- Watch the video
- Make your own color wheel (chart available here)
- Send me a photo of it! Just send me the photo at email@example.com and put Quilting Gallery Color Wheel in the subject line.
I’ll create a virtual exhibition of all the gorgeous color wheels here at Quilting Gallery and select one lucky winner to receive a copy of the book!
Thanks Michele, and I wish all Quilting Gallery readers beautiful color in their quilts!
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