You know what I need? A good, old fashioned fresh start to get myself moving again. And it feels like time to return to improv. Last September I started a series of improv quilts based on the scores from Sherri Lynn Wood's fantastic book, The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters. I made three quilts: Score #1, Zephyr
Score #3, Tipsy
and Score #4, Doodle Doodle, which was completed this March.
Once again I'm appreciating the subtitle's reference to "Living Courageously." As much as that fit when I was learning to cope with a seriously disabled baby, that sentiment is exactly right for pregnancy after HIE (Eleni's diagnosis). And I'm sure I'm not alone. We all need courage to live out fully the opportunities and challenges of our lives.
For this next improv quilt, I'm going to work with a set of solids I selected from the American Made Brand solids collection. This line of solids is 100% sourced, manufactured and dyed in the United States. It's nice to see a company choosing to responsibly carry on the tradition of American textiles from farm to fabric. The hand is lovely, and the colors offered are a tight collection of popular modern shades.
When I selected a range of beautiful blue fabrics with white and gray neutrals, I had in mind an ombre quilt. I was thinking an equilateral triangle quilt, well organized to create an ombre effect, with each blue triangle sharply paired with a neutral triangle of similar value.
Although that sounds lovely, plans do change! I've set my heart on Score #5 from the Improv Handbook and started "figuring it out" last night. I don't feel that this Rhythmic Grid score requires much of a departure from Wood's example. More than the other scores, following her directions will yield something pretty similar. I definitely want to repeat the side "borders" in a contrasting colorway.
Last night I arranged the solids like so. I'm imagining the quilt in 5 rows: a gray "border" row on left, an ombre blue row next, an ombre aqua row in center, an ombre turquoise row next (with a pop of aberrant royal blue) and a denim "border" row on the far right.
According to the score, I also need sashing fabrics for the center vs. border sections. I chose a variety of low volume Cotton & Steel fabrics for sashing in the quilt center and American Made solid white for sashing in the borders. I'm imagining the borders will be low volume compared to the center.
This morning, I refined my color layout, letting go of ombre just a bit. I realized the first layout made a right border that wasn't altogether low volume. To better define the center vs. borders of the quilt, I've moved the lighter solids to the right border: light denim, light aqua, light turquoise and shuffled denim into the blue row, light sky into the turquoise/royal blue row.
This feels right! Time to start cutting.
p.s. You can find American Made Brand solids at Gotham Quilts, Fat Quarter Shop and HoneyBeGood.