My Improvisational Journey Expands

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Since the beginning of the year, I’ve been honing my ‘Modern Improv’ techniques on some exciting quilt projects. You may recall, several Cheryl Arkison workshops, which were crazy fast-paced fun. Then, the more relaxed session with Tina Michalik, who taught an easily scalable Improv block and quilt design. Now with my mindset primed, I recently began another ‘Improv Journey’ that will undoubtedly keep me busy well into the next year and beyond!2015ImprovJourneyHandbookImprovisational Quilting isn’t new by any stretch of the imagination. Quilts have been sewn without patterns from clothing scraps and remnants for many years. However, Ms Sherri Lynn Wood recently published a book directing modern quilters to consider sewing quilts using ‘scores’ and parameters instead of patterns and rulers.

Working without a set pattern makes me particularly giddy after focusing on my traditional Shaded 4-Patch and Carpenters Wheel projects in previous years. My life has been a blur of HSTs (half square triangles) for SO long!

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Take A Chance on Improv: the Retreat

Has life become a mad rush of family constraints, work commitments, house construction and social engagements?
Time to rejuvenate yourself with a creative get-away!

There’s a certain freedom that comes to mind when I think of 3-4 days of simply creating art in the midst of like-minded individuals. My only focus is on fabric, sketchbook ideas and a design wall, with someone else providing tasty meals, bonus points for contemplative surroundings and a puzzle-solving hike or two. Such was a recent Quilty retreat experience.2015BAMRetreatAAlthough I brought several ‘projects in progress’ (PIPs) so I wouldn’t get stuck, I spent a bit of time on ‘philly’ sewing (for charity/philanthropy) and the 4 planned Improv exercises. Sometimes that happens when you ‘take a chance on Improv.’ 😉

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Tina’s Fabulous Improv Workshop

With much excitement, I signed up for Tina’s Fabulous Improv Workshop two months ago.2015TsFabImprovNow, after my sweet kitty lost his battle with intestinal lymphoma just a few short days ago, I feel lost myself. I’m certainly in no shape to face the world, even full of dear Quilty friends.

But as Miss Molly would say, “I paid my money and I’m gonna finish this race!”

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Heartbroken

Found crawling across the sidewalk of a Denny’s in King City when he was days old, this little ‘bitey-scratchy-bouncy-off-walls kitty’ so endeared himself to us over the years while driving us crazy!
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Grateful for the time he spent as part of our family eating blueberries & peas, spinning on chairs & opening sliding glass doors, grooming & keeping Shiitake company, being my shoulder cat & quilt weight…2015OrionApril

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Improv Spoken Here

At the beginning of the year, I had the awesome privilege to expand my Modern Quilt-making chops through an Improv workshop series on CreativeLive with Cheryl Arkison. Working creatively with value/volume choices, improv piecing techniques and design intention, the four of us in the workshop feverishly sewed through two days and four intense and fun sessions.

In all honesty, I had no idea what I was getting myself into, however, my friend, N and I jumped at the chance to shake things up. And we were not disappointed!

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Piecing a Folded Marsala Rainbow

March is always a good month to learn new techniques.

That said, I jumped into an intriguing workshop today: Paperless paper-piecing with Cristy Fincher. (more about Cristy here) We used her Folded block template.
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There are some super fun ways to piece fabric and Cristy’s glue-basting technique is quite ingenious. I don’t tend to like pins, so this was especially perfect for me. (Look: no-pin sewing!)
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