Friday, April 24, 2015

Scrappy Modern

Yesterday Sue took a class with Jacquie Gering, co-author of Quilting Modern and author of Tallgrass Prairie Studio blog.  Here's what she has to say about it.

While I've admired "modern" quilts and have several books, this is the first time I've taken a class or tried this genre of quilting.  It was fun, but does involve thinking a little differently about your process.  Modern quilting (as I see it) includes a lot of negative space (background), simplistic design elements (at least they may appear so), more solid colors than traditional quilts, and clean shapes and lines.  As Jacquie put it, they have their roots in traditional quilts, but with a different interpretation.  And though they may look simple, they are less so when you start looking at the construction.

Yesterday's class was called Scrappy Improvisation.  We started out by making blocks from scraps (or yardage) that consisted of squares, rectangles, wedges - just random piecing; no specific sizes or shapes.  The difference between this and other methods of free-form piecing was that we incorporated pieces of the background fabric as well for "inflow" - so the background would flow in and out of the blocks, making them seem to "disappear" into the background.

Above Jacquie demonstrates how the blocks seem to disappear when placed on the background because of the orange built into the blocks.   Below is my pile of scraps and the first block I made.

After some time spent constructing blocks, Jacquie showed us 2 methods of working with the blocks to construct a quilt top.

Below are the blocks I was able to make during class. Here they are arranged next to each other, but that's not how they'll stay.
With assistance from Jacquie, I played with a layout of the blocks and background and starting filling in the gaps to construct the quilt top.  This is the arrangement I ended up with, though it's not finished.  I will likely make more blocks/pieces to make it larger, but feel like I've got a good start and a better understanding of the concept of "modern quilting".  And even though the background looks like it could be muslin, it's actually a very small print.  I think quilting the finished piece with a variegated thread will help transform the "muslin" look.

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