I was excited when I was asked to be part of the blog hop for Lu Summer’ new book Quilt Improv. It’s a delightfully colorful and playful book that focuses on Improvisational piecing of all types. And it’s extra fun to offer a copy of Lu’s Book to one lucky winner.
I’m not going to lie…Improv piecing is difficult for me. I know, I know…it should be easier because there is no stress about matching points. It is freeing. But for a type A personality like me, I find myself a bit at sea sometimes. So a book like this is a perfect guiding point for me. It is full of plenty of eye candy and ideas.
So I decided to tackle a project inspired by one of Lu’s Quilts, Farm Building.
I was really drawn to the use of mixed solids improv pieced in particular. Lu has a helpful sketch too that was a good jumping point for me to design my own quilt.
I started with purples…all solids (I set my beloved prints aside) and worked with tiny strips of fabric cut with very slight angles.
I am probably the most rigid improv quilter out there, so I couldn’t let go of all control and just throw together the fabrics. I wanted balance with lights and darks, and that takes some thought for me.
Then I moved onto oranges…
and then realized I had a beautiful Heather Bailey fabric that tied together my current colors and needed some more.
So then greens came in and lastly creams. I deviated from Lu’s design by only using heavily pieced sections and not dividing it up with solids. It was just a personal preference of mine and how I felt my piece had the most balance.
Quilting was a big decision for me, but with the help of pals on IG I got some ideas percolating. I ultimately decided on straight line improv quilting that was “perpendicular” to the piecing of each section. I quilted each section separately with a matching top thread.
I didn’t want to lose the detail and interest of the piecing, and I think that this quilting is true to the nature of the piecing. Although admittedly once again, I was pretty planned in my “improv” quilting. Hey, you can’t change overnight!
I bound it in the perfectly matching random polka dot which I love for adding a new shape (circles) to the visual of the quilt while also keeping all the colors pulled together.
It’s a small quilt for me at around 36″ x 45″, but I didn’t want to overwhelm the piecing with too many sections. This way I can focus on each color and the subcolors. It will either be a wall hanging or a baby quilt. I haven’t decided where this one should end up. Suggestions?!