In the end I decided to go with the 10 color option, and I am really pleased with how it came out. Especially since I finished it a whole MONTH before the wedding! The pattern is a classic, called the Trip Around the World, chosen because of my friend's love of travel, and partially inspired by a poem that was read at my wedding. Each fabric is indicative of a place/environment on earth, many of which relate to the very different places that Alison, her fiance, and I all grew up.
Purple - Migrating Cranes for Alison's graduate thesis in costume design, Madame Butterfly, which took place in Japan.
Arctic Blue - Abstracted Mountains for the icy cold poles that only the bravest travelers visit.
Mallard - Quiet Waters for the tropical islands we imagined running away to during grad school.
Hunter Green - Forrest Dreams for the forests in the Pacific Northwest where they now live.
Leaf Green - Meadow Grass for the Midwestern prairie where her fiance, Dan, grew up.
Saddle Tan - Jazzy Zebra Stripes for Africa, where Dan served in the Peace Corps.
Squash Gold - Forest Ferns for the fall foliage where I grew up in New England.
Cinnamon - Tonal Crackle for the south western desert where Alison grew up.
Wine - Sunset Ginkgo Leaves to represent Asia.
Deep Garnet - Lavish Woodgrain as a solid frame to build their life together.
This is the poem that helped inspire the quilt, by Wendy Paris:
I want to go everywhere with you.
I want to go to Italy and Israel and down the street.
I want to lie on a raft under the sun in the South Pacific with you and float and float and float.
I want to go to the tallest building on the highest mountain, in the biggest city.
And I want to go up on the roof with you and look around.
I want us to pool our talents and pool our resources and create together, that which we have not been able to create independently, alone.
And I want you in smaller ways, too, right here, holding my hand and kissing me.