Thursday, January 12, 2017

A New Day, A New Score

Got the initial top put together for the Improv. Pinwheels, which, incidentally, seemed to have turned into wheels. Now it's getting an opportunity to simmer while I decide what the border will look like. Not quite ready to stop with this one as it doesn't feel finished yet.
Improv. Pinwheels
Also, yesterday saw me diving into another Improv. project. And right after I was so determined to get three other on-going projects up to a quilt top stage first!*sigh  It was one of those days. Put a kaleidoscope to your eyes, turn just a tiny bit and wallah, your whole viewpoint is changed. Yesterday was one of those humdinger of a days where 'what I thought' wasn't quite my reality any longer. Oh the joys of belonging to a large, fairly close-knit family. Things happen because well, there's a bunch of us.
Score #4--Patchwork Doodle
Which doesn't mean we have any control over any of it, except perhaps for our reaction. So to settle my jittery, out-of-sync self, I impulsively decided to turn to improv. work. After first buying Sherri Lynn Wood's 'The Improv. Handbook', the intent was to slowly work myself through all of her scores, one by one. Thus far I have only attempted two of Score #1 'floating squares' and numerous tries with Score #2 'strings'. The strings of course have been my favorite and where I have gladly stalled out for several months. A place I'm sure to return to because of how immensely satisfying they are to work with.

Anyhoo! About yesterday. Opening the book, I flipped past Score #3 'round robin' {don't have quilting partners to work thru that at the moment} and ventured straight into Score #4 'patchwork doodle', a score I've had serious doubts about the validity of. What's the point of playing with lots of different units in the same quilt. Chaos? The title to that particular chapter is 'Letting Go of Expectation' which yeah, completely appealed to my current frame of mind.
The strangely intriguing vintage fabric....
I took a second to think and then grabbed a stack of odd fabrics sitting on the back of the counter.  A smallish chunk of vintage, picnic style fabric {bought at a quilt show a couple years ago} had been luring random bits and pieces over there for months now. Strange color combination to be sure, but I've been kinda intrigued with the novelty of it. Why not play instead of carefully plan out? See where it might lead?

The neutral fabric being used here is a really light green fabric that doesn't want to photograph very well, but I think it will do the job as negative space. As uninspired as the initial results were, I didn't really care. Honestly. I just needed to cut and sew. No rulers, no plan beyond one unit at a time--no precision or serious forethought. Two improv. rows at a time {one repeated unit at a time} and eventually I reached a point where a subtle adjustment on the design board gave me something to be interested in. Instead of placing the rows together in sets, right now the intent is to move outward from the middle, mirroring unit rows top and bottom. It's starting to, well...., turn into a plan of sorts? Ha! Only up to and as far as sewing the next set of units! The one thing we quickly learn about improv. is that the outcome is very fluid. And that's okay.

Being in a mood really helped bring about instinctive decision making, something I've noticed {after the fact} two other times in my quilting life. When I don't actually care, it becomes a gut reaction, something a bit more primal. The thing is, if I were really awake on all fronts, I would have quit after the first unit results and probably tossed it all in the trash, emptied all the fabric pieces back into the proper totes, {what was I thinking!!} and promptly turned to another, much prettier project. Being on auto-pilot definitely got me over the hump of feeling queasy about design decisions and yes, firmly up to the point of considered thought and contemplation. Hmmm.... What do we have here?

I'm so glad to have fabric as a calming effect, working it's magic and smoothing out the rougher edges of life. Gotta say, in hindsight, yesterday is nothing that's going to change the course of my life or my love for anybody--one way or the other.

20 comments:

  1. love your pinwheels !! and sometimes being able to sew and not think too much is so good for the soul !

    ReplyDelete
  2. Your doodling looks very satisfying. Sometimes (especially when life slips completely out of control), it feels really good to just shut down the overly-critical part of our brain and just let our eyes and hands play together peacefully. It lets all the batteries recharge, and we often end up with something beautiful as a bonus!

    ReplyDelete
  3. pinwheels looking good and improv blocks certainly work very well for you

    ReplyDelete
  4. Happy Wheels ! :)
    You can title your improv " In a Mood " ! :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. iTS FUN TO JUST START GOING A DIRECTION AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS.Oops, sorry! I like to do that in real life, but not my quilting so much.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I like where you're going with the improv. Yes, I'm very thankful for the soothing power of cutting and sewing.

    ReplyDelete
  7. All I can say is, you are the best darned writer in Blogland! I love the way you look at life. And, thanks for the improv nudge.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Glad you found some calming. Big close families come with challenges but are so worth it. Just gotta love em.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Wish I could just let the fabric, rotary cutter, and thread flow. Maybe someday. . . Glad you found a way to release pressure and find peace (piece?). Your improv design wall group has a lot of potential, I think.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Since your family is giving you fits, I might as well add my two cents worth and see if I get banished from your blog. The real spelling of wallah is viola'. It is french for "here it is." But you probably knew that.

    When I first spied your improv, my eyes saw minions. Your write up and experience sewing the scraps together is, it is like a relationship (or a family) and it goes through the awkward, funny stage, eventually if you stick with it, it gets really awesome. Keep sewing. I am doing the same thing with a 5 yr old UFO that already has me wondering, what was I thinking? But I am pushing on.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Oh Jane at the risk of getting corrected and put in my place .....wallah!! I adore the slips of language and new words that emerge. Our family and many others have kept those glorious mispronounciations and made them our own. We often describe things as being "boo...fil...ooo" a word that my daughter came up with when she could say beautiful. I adore your writing Audrey, I feel your emotions and how quilting and creating help ease our mind. Keep being just who you are, and please don't take away the Wallah! I for one love it, it's part of you, individual, creative and beautiful. xxxx

    ReplyDelete
  12. What fun to see both your improv quilts in progress. It's interesting to hear how you started the second one. I think people who naturally store bits and pieces might find the doodle score a bit easier.

    ReplyDelete
  13. How lovely both these are. I especially like the fabrics in your doodle - quite an unexpected group but they are sitting together very happily and I am excited to see how this will develop. What would we do without sewing to turn to when things, yet again, turn upside down?

    ReplyDelete
  14. I admire you're free thinking and just seeing where it will lead you. I seem to naturally always follow my GPS, having a route already planned out.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I love the soothing nature of sewing, and your free wheeling seems to have done the trick for you! Love your Improv Pinwheels.

    ReplyDelete
  16. I may have to check out this book!! I love the color mix on your Patchwork Doodle, a bit Greenery and I love it!!

    ReplyDelete
  17. wee - your pinwheels are so fun and look like candy to me.
    Your improv looks great.
    Aaaahhh quilting therapy is the best!

    ReplyDelete
  18. Amazing connection between quilt-work and life-work. Fascinating how our inner selves make their way into our week. I can't wait to see what's next.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Love your improv pinwheels! And your 'doodle' playing looks wonderful, great selection of fabrics!

    ReplyDelete
  20. Yum! those improv pinwheels are wonderful! I want to see more of them! A friend & I were discussing recently that we 'makers' often don't allow ourselves time to play or experiment, time to just see where a new thought or technique might take us. I know I always feel that because I work full time, my sewing time is precious & that I shouldn't just 'Play'.

    ReplyDelete

Thanks so much for visiting! Getting comments always makes me happy. I try to respond personally to each comment but if you happen to be a 'no-reply commenter' then you'll have to leave an e-mail to be hearing back from me!

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...