Lu Summers’ Quilt Improv

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.

Lu Summers' Quilt Improv

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…

 Lu Summers' Quilt Improv

and then realized I had a beautiful Heather Bailey fabric that tied together my current colors and needed some more.

Lu Summers' Quilt Improv

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.

Lu Summers' Quilt Improv

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.

Lu Summers' Quilt Improv

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!

Lu Summers' Quilt Improv

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.

Lu Summers' Quilt Improv

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?!

Lu Summers' Quilt Improv

162 thoughts on “Lu Summers’ Quilt Improv”

  1. Your quilt turned out great. I find improve hard to do but I love the effect and have been using it more often – practise makes it easier to do. I would love to have this book in my quilt library. Thanks for the chance!

  2. Sometimes I cannot tell if a quilt is an improv quilt or not. I have seen many quilts that look like improv quilts, but turn out not to be and some that I didn't think were improv quilts and they turned out to be. So, I have come to the conclusion, it really doesn't matter and your quilt is nice.

Leave a Reply

Shopping Cart
Scroll to Top