Current Series, Parts 4 and 5

I’ve been making a series of improvisational blocks from a bundle of fat eights and a single solid blue fabric, which is intended to tie them together visually.

Each set of 4 blocks has a theme, such as triangles from a strip set in this one

I trimmed each block to 6-1/2″ wide; the length is random

and random arrangement of free-cut squares in this one.

All blocks are 6-1/2″ in one dimension to give them some chance of fitting together eventually!
Set 4 had the theme “log cabin”, and I am fond of little lines in my designs, so it had some of those, too:

“Lines” was the theme for set 5:


Despite using a bundle of coordinating fat eighths and a unifying solid, I think these are getting to be too diverse to go together well. I’ll try to attack that problem in the next set. Please stay tuned, and share any suggestions you may have!

 

Current Series, Parts 2 and 3

In our “first exciting episode” about this series, I showed the fabrics and the first set of improvised blocks, which were based on triangles cut from a strip set…

For the second set of improvisational blocks, I set these rules:

  • Start with a strip set
  • Cut and recombine the strip set in random ways
  • Continue to do the final trim so that each block is 6.5″ wide; any length is OK

Here are the blocks:

I wasn’t crazy about these and decided to return to a more planned approach with the next set.  The rules for it were:

  • Start with a strip set
  • Recombine it into loose grids
  • Keep to 6.5″ in one dimension for each block.

I’m marginally more satisfied with these, but that 3rd block in this set makes me think that the next set will need some diagonal lines.  Stay tuned!  And thanks for visiting 🙂

With a little help from my friends…

One of the things I love about blogging is hearing from people who comment and share their ideas.  Here are a couple of ideas that I thought you might enjoy, too.

When I blogged about some household items that are useful for quilting, Peggy commented that she cuts up her old calendars and uses the numbers to label her blocks and rows.

It was the perfect time of year for that handy hint, so I promptly cut up an old calendar. The numbers worked great for labeling pieces for a complex project. I clipped them to groups of fabric for the various sections of the quilt using binder clips–an idea I got from Judy Niemeyer’s class years ago.

Another friend, Claire, responded to my post on making single-color slabs by asking what I do with fabric that is a mixture such that no one color predominates.  I had been cutting out sections based on the predominant color, and that seemed to work.  But…

When I came to this piece, I realized I had NO desire to cut out chunks small enough to be mainly one color.  Then I started looking and saw that I had a number of prints from which I would NEVER be able to cut single-color pieces of any size.quilt slab, slab block, quilt block, modern block

So I made a block of multi-color pieces.  It is pretty wild, but so were some of the fabrics that went into it.  I’ll see how it looks with the single-color blocks when I assemble a quilt.  What do you think?  Make more of these or give up on the truly multicolored fabrics for slabs?

 

My Modern Sampler: Improv Block I

Sherri Lynn Wood’s book finally arrived,Improv Handbook, Sherri Lynn Wood and I’ve been enjoying it.  I have NO intention of making a full-size quilt for every exercise in the book!  However, an improv block for my sampler quilt seemed just right.

The first exercise in the book involves cutting fabric into squares, then using background fabric as needed to join them improvisationally.  I’ll mostly let the pictures speak for themselves here.

Improv quilt block

I chose  2 fabrics and a background to start–my notes are lying on the background fabric

Improv block

Then I cut a bunch of squares

About half way through, the design looked too static to me, so I cut a triangle of background fabric to set in the middle and throw the whole thing onto diagonal lines.

Improv block

I joined some of the pieces, but then…I decided to add a triangle!

The finished block:

improv quilt block

The finished block, which will be 12-1/2 inches square

This ended up resembling my previous work much more than it resembles Sherri Lynn’s quilts.  I think that may be sort of the point 🙂  Here are some of my previous improv blocks:

I’ll probably go on to Improv Block II, etc, as I go through the book.  Stay tuned!

The other posts in my modern sampler series can be found here:

My Own Modern Sampler–It May Take A Year!

The Modern Sampler Continues