Tag Archives: improvisational piecing

Abstract, Improvisation, Intent

Our Guild has decided to participate in the QuiltCon Charity Challenge 2016. The theme is Improv with intent and it uses a limited color palette. I have been so inspired by #beesewcial (check out the hashtag on IG) that I was so excited about this challenge, even though the color palette is a little scary (1/2 the colors very bold, the other 1/2 very neutral).

Our guild did things a little different but playing in the rules:

  • Each person was allowed to pick fat eighths of any or all the colors that the MQG had selected.
  • We chose to stick with solids only.
  • Also, we added that the block must have a triangle in the design.
  • One block required by each person who collected F8’s.

I am so inspired right now with the abstract movement, I think that you will definitely see that in both my designs. My first design, I wanted to use the white, black and grey in stripes and just have pops of color. ImprovIntent_Design1

That turned into this…
ImprovIntent_Block1
I loved the whole process of using no rulers and just using my rotary cutter, ignoring 1/4 seam allowance as I pieced pieces together.  It made it seem so much quicker (maybe 30 minutes).  I had plenty of fabric left over.

That night, I was thinking about how the past week at work, deadlines and having family visiting had made me feel a little more stressed/pressured lately. I was trying to relax and the idea of a second block popped into my head, opposing triangles pushing down (or up) on a line. I literally jumped off the sofa and put the idea into this next improv block.
ImprovIntent_Block2

I have to say this is one of my favorite blocks ever. I really wish I was making the whole quilt :-)…maybe over Christmas break I can come back to playing/experimenting.

It is so fun seeing my guild’s and other guild’s blocks coming alive….check out #quiltconcharityquilt.

 

Mothers Day Sewing

I hope you all had a great Mothers Day. My day started of wonderfully at a local french patisserie.
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I indulged in coffee and sugar!!IMG_4168

The rest of the day, I decided that I would play with an idea that has been in my head for a while. I put away my projects that have deadlines etc….just a day of play. It was fantastic!!

I recently bought the book “Unconventional & Unexpected: American Quilts below the Radar”. I have bookmarked several pages.
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One of my favorites is this Cross quilt (pg. 179 c. 1940-1970), which is behind inspiring my play today.
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I wanted to make my blocks in black and white print fabrics, with a splash of color striped fabric.  I am using strips of black and white cut at 1.5″, 2″ and 2.5″. I then put them in a bag and pull them out randomly (brown bag method), and sew them together, trim them down to 12.5″ squares.

At first, I thought I could use these squares and cut the block across the diagonals. That actually gave me the cross blocks, but also gave me these square blocks as well. I am not sure about the combination yet (??)

cross+square_blocks

For now to save on fabric, I am sewing strips vertically together, using the improv. brown bag method, until it was 6.5″ x 31.5″. I then cut the triangles along the 45 degree angle.
Triangletemplate

This is how my cross blocks look so far. I really like where they are going. I plan to build them out a bit more and see how they go.

Cross_Blocks

Oh! Apparently, I have a lot of black and white fabrics which means no need to buy fabrics….I can sew from my stash. I am hoping to give an update on these again soon (once I get my projects deadlines complete).

Sew Down Nashville: FMQ and improvisational piecing + Winner

Sew Down Nashville was fantastic. Heather, Elizabeth and Jen, from The Modern Quilt Guild, organized the best weekend activity/conference, I have ever attended.

Friday evening, kicked off our sewing with open sew, where you could sew any project with others, in a social environment….like a giant bee. I worked on my hexagon (EPP) lap quilt which is slowly progressing; perfect when traveling. Can you believe it, I finished around midnight.
Hexagon_OpenSew The weekend did not slow down a second from then on. Each class exceeded my expectations. First up, was Angela Walters Free Motion Quilting class. If you ever get a chance to take her class – do….she has such a great flow and structure in her teaching…..she is funny and down to earth which made it a lot of fun. I know!! FMQ fun!!Angela_Me

This was one of her quilts she had on display….one of the quilts, you say, “When I grow up I want to be able to do this”:Angelas_FMQ

I struggled with the more curvy designs. Pebbling, which was our first lesson and my first time I have attempted it, was hard more due to the fact I got lost and didn’t know where to go next. Pebble_FMQ

My favorite designs for Angela’s class was the more geometric shapes. To get the points to be more prominent instead of rounded corners, she passed on the knowledge to pause and then move on so that the needle/stitch catches well. Great tip!!, now I just need to not keep my foot on the pedal and sew 2-3 stitches in the same place 🙂Geometric_FMQ

Practice, practice, practice. Angela talked about how she would for 15 minutes a day just sit at her sewing machine and practice…I think it will be my next months challenge (Sarah @ Berry Barn Designs….sounds like a 3030SC right??).

Victoria Findlay Wolfe, was up next for improvisational piecing. A fantastic class to take those out of their comfort zone, especially if you are a pattern follower. Of course, this one was right up my alley and loved it!

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These were some of my favorite mini quilts that she had bought with her. I love that she has all these vibrant colors in her quilts. All those small pieces did not start out small, it’s all about how you piece the together…and then trim.Victorias_Quilts

In her class I learned how to do a Y seam…folks nice and easy – why was I freaked out about these before 🙂 Also, I managed to improv two blocks…I now have a new project in my head on how I would use these.Improv_YSeam_VictoriasClass

 

Saturday finished up with another open sew and can you believe it I was almost first one to breakfast each morning (7:30 am – yes hubby, I can be an early rising) and one of the last to leave each open sew.  I finished this open sew with a completed block!!
HST_OpenSewBlock

Final part of business today….the winner of Quilt Essentials (btw, I met the author at sew down!!)…is
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Who is Sarah @ For Russia. Congratulations, I will send C&T Publishing/Stash books your details.

I am linking up with Lorna @ Sew Fresh Quilts for Let’s Bee Social (see button on right).