Several posts ago I shared this sample block that I had drafted and stitched up to test my proportions and templates. At the end of the post, I noted that I wasn't happy with the background fabric color (Moda Bella Snow) because although I wanted something soft and light, I felt this shade was too yellow-ish. I asked for suggestions. A few of you shared info about preferred background fabrics for repro quilts and two blog friends jumped to send me generous cuts of their favorites. Unanticipated but very, very helpful!
I use a point-and-shoot camera so I wasn't sure this post would materialize (unplanned pun there). However, I think you can see the differences in the shades. Although most fabric manufacturers now offer a selection of solids, in my limited use of them I have generally stuck to Moda Bella and Kona Cotton. This is because I usually order fabric online and 1.) am familiar with the weight and feel of each cloth and 2.) have color cards of each for true color reference, though they are not totally up-to-date. When you're comparing shades of white though, tiny swatches glued in place don't provide much information to make a decision for a large project.
Using the above photo for reference, one friend sent #1, Moda Bella Ivory and #4, Moda Bella Bleached White PDF. As you can see, there's quite a difference between the two. The Ivory I found to be nearly indistinguishable from the Snow which I had used in my block (see below). And the Bleached White, while not as 'white' as its name implies, was too bright for my use this time. While I was waiting for the other sample to arrive, I stumbled across #3, Moda Bella Off-white at a local quilt shop. I was quite sure that this was going to be perfect in-between shade but I limited my purchase to a half yard until I could compare it. Surprisingly, it was not too far off of the Bleached white, though a 'bit' warmer.
Sample #2, French Vanilla from RJR's Cotton Supreme line of solids, arrived yesterday (and a special *thank you* to this friend who had to send it twice, due to some unbeknownst-to-us USPS rule). When I pinned it up among the others, I found it to be exactly what I was looking for in color and shade. Additionally, the weight and feel of this fabric is quite lovely, perfect for an applique project.
While I would (and will!) use all of these shades in one project or another, I'm definitely going to purchase some of the RJR with the intention of using it as a background for more of these blocks.
Although I did have my trial block pinned up over my Valentine quilt and must admit that gave me another idea....