a curious mixture

Thank you for your heartfelt comments on my quilt-story post, to Capture a Heart. It is always moving to hear that you remember Eleni, and it also seems fitting to share her from time to time with new readers. I am exceedingly grateful for this nourishing space.

After reflecting on the quilts that capture moments of Eleni’s story, I felt inspired to start something new to reflect this time of transition in our lives. This week I’ve begun my second improv project inspired by score #4 from The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters. Author Sherri Lynn invites us to let go of our expectations, freely create and say "yes, and..." to whatever will be. This is the score (an open-ended quilt pattern) that resulted in one of my favorite improv creations, Doodle Doodle.

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The immigrant experience sets everything topsy turvy. One doesn’t know what to expect or how things will work out. Half the time I don’t know how to do what I need to do, but I go for it anyways. This summer has been such a curious mixture of waiting, exploring and surviving. There has been loss too, as we feel out the emptiness where familiar people and places used to be.

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I brought along in my suitcase this collection of ombre solids by Cotton & Steel. It’s their Pigments line, which you can find in full at The Confident Stitch. Since ombres have gradual tonal changes, it’s like having access to a range of related solids. Perfect for traveling light!

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In our transition apartment, I’ve unpacked a few sewing boxes. These Tula Pink Tent Stripes emerged most serendipitously. In combination with the ombres, I think they will bestow a bold and hopeful energy that matches my immigrant experience. You can find Tent Stripes at Crosscut Sewing Co. and Gotham Quilts.

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So I’ve set about playing. I chose a Tent Stripe of golden yellow and blush pink. Let’s see what happens when we try it every which way.


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We have a doodle of blocks in various hues. I see the colors of our ho-hum waiting days, our frenzied days, our delighted days - all with that bold, hopeful core.

True to the style of Sherri Lynn’s book, I’m cutting and sewing entirely ruler-free. This free-form approach, gives my blocks a natural irregularity in size and shape. I find that ruler-free improv really connects me to my emotions and facilities such work.

I think it’s time for my doodle to move on. Stay tuned to see what happens next.