Choosing colors is always one of the hardest parts of a sewing project for me. Especially when it comes to quilts and other projects that can use a lot of colors. After hemming and hawing and getting stuck. After filling up my cart with bolts of fabric only to stop and put everything back. After leaving the fabric store empty handed and being unable to start my project again because I can't make up my mind I came up with a solution. This is a method that works for me almost every time.
I tend to prefer plainer fabrics, solids and prints that act like solids. I prefer the overall piece to make a statement, not each fabric in it. So it was almost counter intuitive for me to come up with this method because I start out by looking for a pattern with lots of colors in it. Basically as many colors as I want in the whole project need to be in this one piece of fabric. Only after I've found a pattern that I love can I start looking for other fabrics.
My pattern this time
Once I've chosen a patterned fabric, I start selecting my other fabrics drawing from the colors in that pattern.
When I'm done, often I end up not using the original pattern fabric at all. ((This time I'm using it as a back.)) I'm left with a set of coordinating fabrics.
Sometimes this method gives me something I didn't expect, but it always gives me something I like.