Value in a quilt has to do with the how light or dark a color reads. While many give credit to color. It is value that does the heavy work. Value effects the look of your quilt. Use it to give depth, interest and make your quilts pop.
When creating a quilt you want to have a good range of value. Failing to do so will result in a quilt that mushes all together and has no definition. Where as if you have a good color scale you can use only one color and still create a quilt full of interest.
An easy way to check that you have a good value scale is to put your camera on it’s black and white setting. Next take a picture of your fabric pull. If you can see a good range grays (from almost white to black) your quilt will have interest and zing. My Finding Hidden Quilts lecture and Trunk Show gives more examples of how value effects a quilt.
Any time you want something to stand out in your quilt. Placing a light by a dark or vice a versa will make it stand out. Change up the value of that aspect. While 3 Red Hot Kisses design gets lost due to value issues. The three red x’s stand out because they are darker than the rest of the fabrics. This is just one example of how you can use value in your quilt.
While designing my current sew along, September Sun, I found the design good. Yet, something was missing. While the fabrics were different colors they were very similar in value. Nothing popped. To fix this problem I started adding darker fabrics throughout the quilt it. This created interest and depth.
Have fun mixing up where you place lights and darks in a quilt. It will give your quilt a whole new feel. Shooting Stars looks totally different with a dark background verses a light background.
As you can see values effect on your quilts has a great impact on the overall quilt. I encourage you to experiment with this great tool. See what possibilities it opens up for your quilts.