Tag Archives: planned improv


Last Sunday was the beginning of season 10 of Project QUILTING, a series of one-week quilt challenges. I've participated for the past two years and this year I'm a sponsor. The theme for this week's challenge is Hope Springs Eternal. Well... I was out of town for the first 4 days of the one week challenge, and then I had to spend Thursday and Friday making serious progress on a quilt deadline that I'll be posting on my blog tonight. This means I didn't even have time to think too much about this challenge until yesterday.

I had a hard time with this theme. In the end, with 14 hours until the deadline (including overnight... and I needed to sleep) I had hope I could crank out a small quilt. How's that for hope springing eternal? My initial goal was a mug rug, then I decided on placemat sized, and in the end I trimmed it to 18.5" x 18.5". I'll be linking up with less than 15 minutes to spare.

I used a lovely piece of hand dyed fabric from my friend Mel Beach and my Planned Improv: All About Angles technique. After demoing my technique on Wednesday (7 times!) I'm excited to work on some All About Angles projects.

I used two sizes of Aurifil Light Leaf Green (#1147) for this quilt. It was pieced and bound with Aurifil 50wt and quilted with Auriful 80wt. I hadn't used 80wt and really love the fine line it creates. It's certainly quilting that's all about the texture and not the color. I chose a fast motif from my recent class with Christa Watson. It's way fancier than a basic meander, but not much more difficult.

Here's the basic breakdown of how I made the quilt start to finish in under 14 hours.

8pm - pull fabric
8:50pm - cut fabric
9:07pm - start sewing
10:50pm - bedtime

5:45am - back at the machine
6:20am - finished quilt top 
7am - quilting begins
7:45am - done quilting
8:40 - binding going on
9:25am - photos, then blog post
9:48am - linkup

Congratulations to everyone who finished the challenge! View them all at the Project QUILTING 10.1 linkup. Voting is open, so click over to check out the 124 submissions and vote for your 10 favorites.



The Curves Mini Quilts challenge for Curated Quilts ends today. I love quilt challenges for a variety of reasons. The small size of a mini quilt is a great way to play with a new or different technique. When the Curves challenge was announced I loved the palette (though I totally missed that white was in the list) and knew that I would do something with gentle improv curves.

I was out of town for 9 days in December without my sewing machine, so I packed along my fabric, rotary cutter, and small cutting mat. This allowed me to work in my hotel room to prep all my pieces for the mini quilt.

When I returned home I needed to finish up one last December project before I could get to work on this project beginning January 1st. But since my pieces were all cut and organized, the units went together quickly.

I trimmed them down to 4-inch squares.

I opted to add in the white from the palette with my echo walking foot quilting. The 10.5" x 10.5" quilt was finished with a faced binding.


I'm linking up to the Curated Quilts Curves Mini Quilt Challenge call for entries and Michelle's Beauties Pageant, and Wendy's Peacock Party, and TGIFF with Anja. There are so many other beautiful submissions. Congratulations to everyone who participated.


This week the new project on the design wall is my Improv Tumbler that I'm making for my Island Batik Ambassador "Whimsical and Wonky" challenge this month. All of my fabrics are from the Paisley Dot Brights 10" stack (provided to me by Island Batik). I'm going for a color wash effect. I was able to get all of my whole tumblers onto the wall. I have a pile of half tumblers that I will use to fill in the ends of each row and perhaps piece together to fill in if needed. These improv tumblers were cut freehand with a rotary cutter, without the use of a ruler or template.

I look forward to starting to get this one sewn together. It's shown on a 48" wide design wall, so I expect it will shrink up up around 36" wide.

Edited to add: A little more on this project can be found in this earlier post. And it's based on my Improv Tumbler Mini (which I miss).

What's on your design wall this week?