Wednesday, April 18, 2018

All In

As I was planning for the Everyday Improv workshop I'll be teaching with McKinney MQG in a couple of weeks, I was listing all the improv techniques I wanted to share with them, and decided it might be fun to have a sample quilt using all of them. Crazy, no? Probably. Most definitely. But that's how All In came to be.

I chose some solids that I thought would be fun to work with, and they definitely were - Kona Bright Peri, Tiger Lily, Pickle, and Lipstick. I cut and pieced, adding segments to the design wall as I finished them, not really knowing where I was headed. Gotta say I love designing that way.

Of course things get rearranged as more is added, and eventually some trimming and make-to-fit is in order.

And as some point, you just start sewing parts together and figuring it out as you go. When playing with these techniques, I find I usually just squish things together - ie. go very maximalist and dense. One of these days I might think about giving these shapes some room to breathe. Another time!

For quilting I used Aurifil 50wt #2250 [Red], at first because that was the only coordinating thread I had, but the more I quilted, the more I loved the choice, and eventually that red component ended up following into the binding. About the quilting though.... I used the section of dots as a guide to start an organic grid - straight lines, though angled as needed to avoid quilting over a dot - and then just carried it out from there in both directions, approximately 1 1/2" apart. That's less compact than my usual, but I think it really suits this quilt. Maybe that's where I let it breathe a little.

Just for fun, I added in a little pieced scrap into the binding.

And then I chose just one more technique of sorts for the backing - drawing from a traditional block, the Improv Quarter Log Cabin.

Sooo.... there are 15 improvisational techniques pieced into this smallish 32.5" x 34" quilt. Hopefully my students will have as much fun playing with them as I did.