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Showing posts with label Free-Form Quilting. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Free-Form Quilting. Show all posts

9 Apr 2018

Improv Quilting: The modern scrap quilt

One of my favourite piecing techniques is Improv. I come from a fine arts and design background so I love to go off the beaten path. I enjoy the freedom Improv provides. I believe it's quilting for the soul. There are no real rules for Improv quilting. You are basically piecing scraps together in a free-form way. The results are stunning. The textures and all the combined colours can result in a true work of art.

My piece Summer Aspen below was submitted for a new wing at a local hospital. The theme for the submissions was trees. I chose the Aspen tree because I love how Aspen leaves rustle in the wind. Unfortunately, the piece wasn't chosen but I ended up with a very nice quilt for my home.


Improv quilt Summer Aspen by Monica Curry
SUMMER ASPEN by Monica Curry

The strips I used for the tree trunks in Summer Aspen were cut from fabric that was printed from a linocut I made. I wanted each strip to look like an actual Aspen tree.





I liked how this quilt turned out and it hung in my office for a couple of years. I now enjoy it as a sewing machine cover.



My art quilt Closing Time below was shown at the Manitoba Crafts Council Exhibition 2013. The quilt was named after Leonard Cohen's song Closing Time. While I was making the quilt this line from the song kept coming up in my head, "and the men they dance on the polka-dots" because of the polka dot fabric I was using.

CLOSING TIME by Monica Curry


CLOSING TIME (Detail) Photo by L. Norman


Improv Quilting Books

Several years ago I bought Rayna Gillman's book Create Your Own Free-Form Quilts: A Stress-Free Journey to Original Design. I wanted to try something new and push the envelope a little. I also had a ton of little scraps I couldn't bear to throw out. The result was my improv quilt called Summer Aspen (shown above). I really enjoyed making this quilt. Gillman's book is very comprehensive and well written. She provides very good step-by-step directions for her "free-form" quilting technique.




In 2017, Rayna published her new book Create Your Own Improv Quilt: Modern quilting with no rules and no rulers. I haven't bought it yet but from what I can tell her style has changed from her first book.



See more great examples of Improv quilts at my Pinterest board.






1 Nov 2015

Free-form quilting art quilt

This quilt, Happy Hour, was created for the Manitoba Crafts Council 2013 annual members' For the Love of Craft art show.

free form art quilt black and white

I enjoyed making this art quilt. It was inspired by Rayna Gillman's book Create Your Own Free-Form Quilts. I named it Happy Hour because the polka-dots reminded me of Leonard Cohen's song Closing Time. There's a line in the song that goes "and the men they dance on the polka-dots." I was humming that tune much of the time I was finishing up the quilt, and I couldn't get that line out of my head.

free form art quilt detail

One of the most enjoyable things about free-form quilting is that it keeps you thinking outside the box. There's no real plan, which means all kinds of cool things can happen.

28 May 2015

Sewing machine cover from an old art quilt

I made a sewing machine cover with an old art quilt that hung in our office. I had been trying out improv aka free form quilting for the first time and created this mini quilt Summer Aspen. I love the colours but grew tired of it on the wall.

"Summer Aspen" improv quilt by Monica Curry

I used Rayna Gillman's book Create Your Own Free-Form Quilts to make this quilt art. This book guides you along very well and has beautiful examples of some of Ryana's pieces.



At first, I thought it might look nice as a bag, but I changed my mind about that and decided to turn it into a sewing machine cover. I love how it turned out.

sewing machine cover art quilt