Three inch squares of ugly scrap fabric are addictive. I didn't realize that. I thought I was cutting up the stuff and sewing it together in a way that will hopefully disguise some of its ugliness.
The lights and darks were giving me trouble until a picture in a quilting magazine provided the answer. Muslin! It's definitely light, lighter than all but a couple of the fabrics I'd been trying to use. Next to it, pretty much everything else can work as dark or medium. And I've got muslin.
This is fun. I cleared all of the toys out of the front room this morning and laid out what I had. It didn't look like much when I was crawling around on the floor, but it's photogenic!
That's about half of the squares I need for the size I'd planned. I cut the rest of the pieces this afternoon, so now all that's left is sewing and pressing. Oh, and joining the blocks together and finding backing fabric, and all of those pesky little details.
I am so happy with the way this is coming out!