Let's say I want to make a double four-patch quilt, like the sketch below, and I want to make the quilt white (white areas) and blue (gray areas).
I make a blank sketch of the quilt.
Following the grid, I color in the light areas of the quilt sketch, one color per block. The light areas represent white for this project. I use Electric Quilt, but graph paper and colored pencils work just as well. By the way, the bottom row is #9, so I repeated row #1. You can extend this way anytime you have more than 8 squares.
Next I color in the dark areas of the quilt, following the grid again. The dark areas represent blue for this project. I call the finished coloring my map. This is a simple coloring. We'll get more complicated later.
That was a pretty simple coloring. Let's get more complicated now. Start with your blank sketch and color in the light areas like before. Here's where it's different. Before you color in the darks, turn the grid 90 degrees to the right or left. It doesn't matter. I turned mine to the right. Now color in the dark areas according to the new grid orientation. You'll end up with something like this:
The grid can be adapted to blocks that have more than two fabrics. Just turn the grid 90 degrees to color the next block element. I use light and dark for a two-element sketch. You may need to invent ways to designate the extra elements in your coloring, such as hash marks or polka dots. Do what you've got to do to keep things straight.
I hope you try my system. I'd love to hear how it worked for you, and I'd love to see your color map and finished quilt. If you have questions, please Email me.
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