I wasn't sure about my selection of fabrics for Dena Crain's class at Symposium so I emailed her, asking if she could take a quick look at my blog post to see if the choices I made would work. She replied promptly with some very good advice and suggestions. In fact my email prompted her to add some images of fabric graduations (gradations as they say in the USA) so I'm glad I asked. Here is part of her reply:
Your printed gradation is fine, but not for this class. Save it for future Darned Quilt projects, ok? I really want you to assemble your own gradation. It's a good exercise in color and value, as I think you will realize once you've seen my blog page and the WebFabrics page.
As for your collection of gradated fabrics, compare it with what you see that I have posted. Look, Helen, for higher contrast in the gradation. Without that contrast, the Darned Quilt won't work very well.
The way to test contrast is to place the fabrics from each end of the gradation next to each other. If the difference between them is low, as it is in your posted set, then your Darned Quilt will be less successful than it should be. Make sure your gradation covers a lot of territory from one end to the other, and you will be a happier Darned Quilter!
The internet is so wonderful for things like this. How did we manage 'before sliced bread'?
You can see what the class is about and the examples of the fabric graduations here. You can also see more graduated collections of fabric on the WebFabrics page. I've pulled more fabrics from my stash and put others away. I'm going to think on it overnight. I keep wanting to pull 20 fabrics when I am supposed to have only 6-8. This is a bit of a challenge for me. I guess I can take 20 and then make a final choice on the day. The trouble with taking classes is that I want my whole stash with me!
I also see on her blog page about this class that I need a "Good selection of cords, ribbons, laces, trims, yarns, 6-10 yards of each, and decorative threads". This part of the needs list seems to have been missed from the Symposium printout. Yikes, now I'm very glad I asked! I'd better start looking for some.