By now many of you have received the new fabric kits for “The Pardalot’s Confusion”. For those of you acquiring your fabrics on your own using the Fabric List, this can apply to you too.
You may have noticed one of the Fuchsia fabrics and wondered, “what? how do I use this one?“, “Is she crazy?“.
When working on a small scale like we are, what might look like an improbable fabric choice actually is ideal. The Fuchsia petals are really small but need to incorporate more than one value to give the image life. Fabrics with large patterns and transitions of value will not work.
In small areas, this fabric gives me a light, medium and dark plus some transitional values in-between. Definitely what I like to call a home run fabric.
So how do I use it?
Looking at the image above, the “petals” in the fabric are used for the dark shadows (shown by arrows). Because I have to move from dark to light with high contrast due to the small area, the fabric offers me that option. The dark petals on a light background that also includes some areas of differing values in between in smaller areas that let me transition quickly from dark to light.
Although the first impression is that the lower Fuchsia petals are white, none of the fabrics used are a true white. Why? because the darker pink sepals in real life are reflecting color onto the “white” petals and therefore the petals are always going to have some hint of pink projected onto the white. The light determines the amount of hue, color and value.
Not only is the pink from the sepals reflecting color but the green from the stamens are as well. and underneath that Fuchsia’s “dress” the green concentrates which muddies up the pink a bit. So to keep things real, we need to reflect that color in the shadow.
Enter the Fabric for this shadow color:
Unexpected fabric eh? But how do I….??
Grabbing some of the darker color along with some transitioning value creates magic. Place the template to catch just a bit of the darker pink orange or orange, some of the salmon and a hint of the light value and voila! Because all of these values are present in such a small area, this fabric is perfect. This is what to look for when working with smaller scale imagery in applique.
So you see, there is a method to the madness. I hope this helps you understand how to use these fabrics better.
The Fabric List for those who do not have kits is available for download under the pattern listing in the website shop.