Tag Archives: improv blocks

In June, Chris asked us to make improv blocks using her chosen palette of colors in five color families: purplish, red-orange, yellow-green, blue-green, and green. I started by pulling solids that were a direct match for the Kona colors she listed for us, then filled in a little with colors that were close. She asked for our signature style improv piecing. I'd love to hear what you think of as my signature style of improv. Since I had just taught Improv Log Cabins I was inspired to make one of my blocks a log cabin.

There are a few things I enjoy including in an improv log cabin, the skinny strip (1/8" finished width), pieced logs, and wonky cutting. And my center "square" was pieced because the scrap of red I had wasn't a rectangle, so I just sewed some blue on to get started. In an effort to create a pieced log I created a strip that I didn't end up liking for my log cabin, so it was the "sourdough starter" for my second block...

I'm not entirely sure why I didn't love the blue and yellow strip for my log cabin, but the curve of it didn't help. In this block I embraced the curve to create smooth improv curved piecing.

I think these both feel like "me", but what are you missing that is part of my signature style? I'd love to hear in the comments.

Loide requested improv Christmas blocks for November in our Bee. She told us that anything goes for Christmas and our blocks could be traditional Christmas colors or something else.

After pondering about what I would make I started with a candle block, approximately 13" x 16".

Some others in the group had made some Christmas trees, so I pivoted and made a wreath, approximately 12" x 12". As I was working I decided that it would be a chunky square wreath, though I included extra background fabric for Loide so she could add some corner triangles to soften it up if she'd like.

Lastly, I chose a candy cane... it's some precisely pieced improv, but it was still built improvisationally. I sewed together red and white strips, then cut at an angle and pieced multiple pieces to make the length of the candy cane, approximately 10" x 13".

You can follow along with our bee, Quilts Unscripted, on Instagram.

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Last month, Chris gave us the open-ended invitation to play with line in our improv blocks for her. Straight lines and how they intersect, or how they don't. She asked for black background (I used Kona Black) and as many colors as we like (at least two) for our lines, preferably brights.

My lines all vary between 1/8" and 1/2" in width. I really enjoy the look and process of piecing a skinny 1/8" strip. So I started with that.

This first one is about 12" x 12" with 1/8" strips in three colors. Technically the lines intersect somewhere to the lower left outside of the block. This block accidentally has 90's neon laser photo backdrop vibes for me.

My second block is 8" x 8" and more precise with two 1/2" strips intersecting in the center of the block.

My last block is about 7" x 6" and I thought of the branches on a plant or the veins on a leaf.

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