Wednesday, February 6, 2013


You have probably heard the furniture/accessory adage that 'buy what you love; and it will all go together when you get it home'.  Does this also apply to color and fabric?  I have spent years trying to figure out the relationships between colors with some success, but with a whole lot of failures, too.  It just doesn't seem to come natural to me - it takes a lot of practice.
Strange, I know, but two of my favorite colors are brown and black.  Do they go together?  I decided to do a pillow experiment using scraps of wool that I had on hand.  I gradated brown and black, light and dark to see if they blended together.
For years, I used this technique when making quilts from scraps.  Below is one of my old work sheets from a quilt I made. I would pick out a couple of fabrics (shown upper left in photo below) to use repeatedly to unify the quilt; then I chose fabrics from my stash to add.  I would lay them out in gradation; then squint my eyes or photograph them to see if there was something that stood out in a bad way.  I'm sure in this particular quilt I eliminated bright yellows, and used the brighter red as an accent.
This is the quilt that resulted from that exercise.  It ended up having 96 different fabrics in it.
Even after many, many of these worksheets/quilts, I still struggle.

So now do I think black and brown go together?  Yes, but maybe it's because I just love the two colors.  (By the way, I'm terrible at picking out paint colors - I need more practice!)

Check out the following blogs for lots of inspiration:
No Minimalist Here for Thursday Open House
The Shabby Creek Cottage for Transformation Thursday
The Charm of Home for Home Sweet Home Friday
Romantic Home for Show and Tell Friday
Funky Junk Interiors for Saturday Nite Special
The Dedicated House for Make It Pretty Monday
Cozy Little House for Tweak It Tuesday
Primp for Primp Your Stuff Wednesday
Ivy and Elephants for What's It Wednesday


Ceekay-THINKIN of HOME/Doublewide Decor said...

Brown, Tan, and Black....yep, that pretty much sums up my home! Love it!

Anonymous said...

Sally, I've decided there is no right or wrong way to work with color, it's all about what pleases the viewer, or in your case with quilting, the user! Sometimes colors smack us in the face (in a pleasing way) and sometimes they meld together and become a part of the background (also in a pleasing way). I say whatever floats your boat with color is the way to go.

Take care and thanks for the nice comments!


Donna Wilkes said...

I love brown and black together. The quilt you featured is beautiful. Great tip about taking a photo if you are unsure of color choices.

Anonymous said...

Darling pillow Sally!! Bet it looks even more darling in that wonderful home of yours!!

Got a Silhouette machine at Christmas and what little time I have I've been trying to figure that thing out!! Gosh it is much more complicated then I had imagined! Did end up making some darling little pillow box valentines for the employee's of Hospice in Walsenburg, Trinidad and Raton offices- they are such a great group of people. Hope they will enjoy their little goodies- I going to try and do a little post about them as I think they would be a great little gift anytime-

Been wanting to email you about some ministry stuff- will try and do that tomorrow!

bee blessed

Jann Olson said...

Sally, my youngest daughter chose brown and black for her wedding colors. All of her bridesmaids wore black and each had a different colored bouquet. It was stunning! The rest of the family was in black or brown. I love the pillow and you know that quilt is amazing!

Debra said...

ha ha I think that anything that YOU put together is going to go together ! :)

Daena from Bad Rabbit Vintage said...

Of course brown and black go together! Ha Ha As long as it is the right brown with black. Just go with your instincts and you'll be fine!