I’m a member of the Modern Quilt Club at my LQS (local quilt shop) Mill House Quilt. On the third Thursday of every month we meet from 9:30 to 10:30 in the gorgeous upstairs of this lovely shop and discuss Modern Quilts. In the quilting world the definition of ‘modern’ has drummed up a lot of controversy and disagreements. This group is nothing like that. We share what we’re working on, our thoughts and help each other with the next step of a quilt.
My definition of Modern Quilts? Completely still on the fence. Some folks at the last meeting said they thought my work is modern – I have to say I don’t agree with that. My work is contemporary and completely my own but I don’t think it’s of a modern aesthetic. That being said, I am dabbling into the modern world a bit because of this club and my membership in the Modern Quilt Guild.
This year our club is going through the Lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making: From Color to Quilting: 10 Design Workshops by Your Favorite Teachers. Each month a member of the club volunteers to share a lesson from a chapter in the book. This month I shared the ‘improvisational piecing’ lesson.
I highly recommend checking out the chapter about it in Lucky Spool's book! It felt like the words about how I feel about improvisational piecing where taken from my head and put on paper in a cohesive form!
Before I got to the lesson I shared some of my work that I used improvisational piecing (or free form piecing).
“Barn Bones” was my first attempt at free form quilting. When I first started this method I was inspired by Rayna Gilman’s book Create Your Own Free-Form Quilts: A Stress-Free Journey to Original Design . I highly recommend it. It has become a book I reference often!
Then came the ‘Amazing Technicolor Dream Quilt.’
And with a slightly different method along came, the ‘Amazing Technicolor Dream Heart’.
After I had made my first two free form quilts I was lucky enough to attend Victoria Findlay Wolfe’s workshop based around her book 15 minutes of Play -- Improvisational Quilts: Made-Fabric Piecing Traditional Blocks Scrap Challenges . It is always great to see what others are doing and see what their thought process is.
For my lesson I showed the group two different blocks I had work on.
This one was purely a grab and sew from my scrap bin. No thinking, just sewing, cutting, sewing and sewing some more! Definitely a fun start to … something! We’ll just have wait to see what!
Next I wanted to show the group how to do improv color blocks. A friend had just given me a whole bag of her scraps. Capri and I sorted them into brown paper bags by color.
I randomly grabbed a blue bag of scraps, free form pieced it together and then made this fun little mini quilt! It was a quick and freeing project. I can’t wait to play with the quilting in this one.
Before the group left I gave them an assignment of making their own improv color blocks.
Pip randomly handed out paper bags that were full of random scraps all color blocked together. They are to spend 20 minutes grabbing fabric randomly out of the bags and piecing them together without thinking about it. Next month we’ll get to see what everyone comes up with! Most of all – I hope I hear they had fun and did something they never expected to!
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