Saturday, December 27, 2014
Extemporaneous (revisited) 60"x60"
First of all, the reason for the break is that I packed up my studio way back in September in order to sell our house. Three months later it finally sold, and after another month of escrow we made our move to the central coast of California. However my studio still languishes in boxes in the garage as we finish a remodel.
Last week someone way up in Canada posted a lovely comment about this quilt and requested I explain how I composed it for "noob" quilters. Can I safely assume that means "newbies?" As I explained when I first posted it, the inspiration for this quilt was a Joe Cunningham tutorial on Craftsy. His class is titled Pattern Free Quilting, in which he teaches several improvisational methods for piecing. I've been a Joe C. fan for years--his unconventional quilts and wry humor.
My quilt took off from the piecing method he calls Fantasy Four Patch. I won't go into exact details because I think you should purchase his class on Craftsy for those instructions. But in general terms he says to start with a yard each of two fabrics--a dark and a light--which you cut into strips of varying widths. Next you sew different widths of the two together to create a series of pieced lengths, which are subsequently sub-cut into various widths. Those cuts are sewn into various permutations of four patch blocks. Then the blocks are assembled to your liking.
Where did I take off? I started with two blue and white fabrics and one mustard. Pretty quickly, though, I wanted that red in there. And when all was assembled on the wall, I wanted the navy blue border with patches from the interior breaking into its solidity. One of the things I love about Joe's four patch is that you can't re-engineer it just by looking. The oddball blocks blend so that you can't tell they were all the same size. So you get an original composition every time. That's talking my language!