Sunday, April 21, 2013

More of My Work from the class

There are three of the pieces that I made in the class that didn't make it into the window before I took the pictures.
So, first let me share those with you.
 This one above looks similar to one of the others I made.  In the window, it looked like stained glass.

This one is a fairly simple block that I cut a diagonal line through and added the blue strip. This was my first try on this way of altering a block, although the block was already "free-pieced."

This third one was dubbed "Pickles and Peanut Butter" by Julie who sat next to me.  I showed her the two pieces of fabric and said "I am going to use these two pieces in a block"  She replied "What?!?!  That is like pickles and peanut butter."  She didn't think they went together at all. It is a bit unusual but I think I like it. I used what I remembered of a technique that I learned in a book.  Of course I didn't remember the exact method, so I had to just wing it.

There was plenty of fabric to play with.  China and Mary Ann brought in several bags and tubs of fabric. It was all piled on or stashed under two tables. I call this the "Pile o' fabric"
This photo was AFTER the students had gotten fabric and started sewing. However, it was different again at the end of the class.  I know that I added some from my scrap bag back onto the table.  I probably used more fabric from the table than from what I took with me.  I have fallen in love with using solids.  I think there is a Zen feeling that solids can bring.

One of the students sewed everything by hand.  At lunch we were discussing it and she said "I work in front of a computer all day. I just didn't want to be sitting in front of another machine."  She had lots of pre-cut strips laid out and sewed them into  strata. Here is a picture of her basting them onto the batting and backing while China visits her.
And here is her quilt pin basted.

She did all of this by hand in the class time from Monday night until Thursday morning.

Now, let me show you the two pieces I have made since getting back.

For the first one I took a piece of fabric that I had embroidered on and used it as the center. I pieced pieces together and worked out and around from there. 

For the second one, I simply started piecing odd bits together and "making" fabric.  In both of these I added some bits of muslin that I had stamped with fabric paint and my leaf stamp.
In doing this process  of free piecing, I have learned to use my scissors more than I ever did before. it is much easier than jumping up to go to the cutting table to trim a seam.

Let me challenge you to try making this type of block.  There is no pattern, no templates, and best of all no rules!  Let yourself go and try things.  Don't over think it - that limits your creativity.  Just play like you are a kid and the fabric is your box of crayons.  Color outside the lines.  Trust me it is fun!


Barbara said...

I love this, Gene. But I honestly don't do well at this kind of piecing. It reminds me of crazy quilt work, something that always eludes me. I love that one of your classmates worked by hand. We always did that with a church guild quilt, but it took a whole year to complete the quilt!

Beth said...

Gene, your blocks are just amazing. I want to try just grabbing fabric and sewing, but I am not sure that I can. Maybe I will get a bag and put fabric in it then I will just pull and stitch.
Love the hand pieced top, it is beautiful.
Thanks for the inspiration.

Eat Sleep Quilt said...

I love the way you play with fabric, it really is freeing when you don't have to follow (usually someone else's) pattern. Solids do have a different attitude, don't they?

Teresa Quilts said...

You know you are crazy quilting, don't you? LOL Love your blocks! So colorful!

Janarama said...

The blocks you created are really very pretty. They are right up my alley because of the beautiful bright colors you used. Would love to see what you create with them.

Rhonda said...

Oh Gene, I love your pickles and peanut butter quilt. I think the 2 fabrics lend a 3-D effect.

Jean(ie) said...

I Love this! It really took you out of your box and inspired you. This makes me smile.

I will try something more improv-style. I have difficulty letting go. But I have some solid charm packs I can cut up and use.

Jackie said...

I love all your blocks...simply wonderful... way to go Gene!

Royce said...

I really love all you have done. I even like the pickles and peanut butter - they seem to work together very well to me. Solids are very freeing aren't they. This type of piecing does look very zen. I like doing improvisational piecing too, very freeing. Kind of lets you have a more intimate conversation with your fabric. I bet your whole trip was a joy.

IHaveANotion ~ Kelly Jackson said...

Challenge me all you want will be awhile before I can make a block and then asking me to remember to do it....well that's a whole other topic! LOL

I saw the Marcia Derse fabric in one of your pieces... the, love, love it.

The one you did looked like Convergence by Ricky Tims....but like I have a brain cell left to recall much of anything.

I'm just so darn glad you had fun and loved what you were doing. You know I loved the piece the gal did by hand is always wonderful when people create and are congruent with their own energy and spirit.