I found a pattern online that I liked and decided that a rust print in my stash would be perfect for the outer border, and as a jumping off point for selecting fabrics. Of course, it would be scrappy - but the question is, how scrappy is too scrappy?
At first this was my selection. The rust focus print is on the top left, and the rust and gold next to it will be used in the pieced sashing and borders. I didn't photograph the mottled cream background fabric:
But then I got to thinking: is it TOO MUCH? I actually never thought I'd say that because scrappy is my "thing". But the more I looked at the stack of fabric and studied the photograph it seemed that the whole was waaaaay more than the parts, so to speak. It was screaming, not conversing with the viewer.
So I spread out the stack on the table and started thinning out to those fabrics which most seemed to relate to the outer border print. And I got it down to this:
A much more controlled selection which still picks up the rust/gold/olive/brown/tan palette of the print. It had more room to breathe. It had tonal range and variety in the prints, but none of the prints fought with the focus fabric. I was much happier with it.
This is a real admission for a "more is more" kind of gal.