Fabric Design Must-Haves

I have been thinking about fabric design a lot lately. I think it is something that I would love to do. Well, the finished product with my name on it would be great. After hearing Anna Maria Horner talk about the process, I am not sure if I am motivated enough to do all the work entailed for an actual fabric collection. If a fabric manufacturer came knocking, I would definitely find the motivation!!

One of the things I have been thinking about is must-have motifs in a collection. What parts of a collection do I always buy? Stripes and dots, definitely.

Eliza Stripe by Westminster
Eliza Stripe by Westminster

I like the above stripes, which I bought during my week away at Fabric Crush in Magnolia, because they are relatively bright and regularly spaced. I also like the ratio of white to color. In my regular fabric psychosis mind, I keep thinking “oh dear! I didn’t buy enough! I should have bought 2 yards!” despite the FACT that I haven’t used any of them and they were just washed over the weekend.

I also liked the stripes from P&B’s Pop Parade collection if the mythical fabric company wants some wonky stripes.

Ta Dot/Michael Miller & Emmalynn's Days of the Week
Ta Dot/Michael Miller & Emmalynn's Days of the Week

Above are a couple of the dot motifs that I like. Both are regularly spaced, but have slightly different sized dots.Β  The Emmalynn’s Days of the Week by Susan Osborne are on the top and the Ta Dot is below. There are some scatter kind of dots that I like as well. I find myself gravitating towards the regularly spaced dots lately. I think I need something to count on in my life lately. πŸ˜‰

Perhaps in my mythical fabric collection I would have a couple of regularly spaced dots (smaller and larger??) as well as some scatter dots or spots.
Barbara Brackman brought a new thought in this vein to mind in a post where she talked about how paisleys were must have motifs in a certain era (Civil War??) of fabric design. I haven’t noticed many paisley type prints lately so I don’t know if they are modern enough to go along with the popular prints today. I haven’t been looking, so they could be out there. I have bought a few paisleys in the past as I recall. I definitely won’t be a designing fabrics in Civil War era colors! Still paisleys are an interesting shape and have a lot of opportunity for designexploration. I’ll have to play around with some paisleys and see what I come up with.

I’ll have to think about what else I would include. I am not sure if I would want a focus fabric as I have no idea what I would design for a focus fabric. Flowers? Trees? Snowflakes? I don’t know. A collection without a focus fabric may be a total non-starter for the mythical fabric company that comes knocking on my door, so I’ll have to think about it.

I have always thought that ‘basics’ collections were very appealing. You can buy a lot of them in many colorways (regular stream of income for the company!) and they are useful for a variety of projects. They tend to stick around in terms of being able to buy them, which is an added bonus for those of us who don’t manage to finish projects very quickly. πŸ˜‰

I would love to see basics types collections be expanded upon rather than just dropped because the Color Council issues new colors. I think Moda Marbles are an excellent example of a successful basics collection. Not only do they have their basic tone-on-tone version, but they expanded out to the Moda Marble Dots and the Moda Marble Stars. Very clever of Patrick Lose to expand in that way. How about Moda Marble Stripe, Patrick?

P&B New Basics was fabulous as well. I have linked to their current colors, which are very dark and not as interesting to me as the previously issued brighter colors.

So, I wonder if I should include some tone-on-tones in my fabric collection? It might be easier to coordinate them with the Moda Marbles or another basics type collection? Hhhmmm…

So, you can see what wanders around in my head as I navigate the rest of my non-quiltmaking life. What do you think your must haves are when you consider purchasing a whole fabric collection?