Tuesday, 23 January 2018

AHIQ - share your improv #29

Welcome to the first AHIQ link up of 2018, and the start of a new invitational. We're thinking that we will run two this year rather than three, just to allow people some breathing space.  In the same spirit I have been trying to think about setting a challenge that might fit in with existing plans, for some of you at least.  I have hummed and hawed around this; there are 3 pinterest boards on the go and I have made notes on all 3 possibilities.  Even as I started to type this post I hadn't absolutely settled.  I do this in restaurants too - never know what I am going to order until everyone else has chosen and the waiter is looking at me expectantly.  But there comes a point when prevarication has to stop. So here goes...

I am suggesting that we have a play with the idea of scale.  When I started to think around this, I came up with lots of different possible approaches you could consider.  Here are just a few:
  • Mix large and small versions of one block.  This sounds, perhaps like the most obvious option, but could range from something quite ordered, like this  to something much more wild and organic, like this quilt by Rosie Lee Tompkins, this one, made in the 1850s in Wales, or this variation on a Blazing Star (IQSCM; Robert and Helen Cargo Collection - you can click on the images for more details).

  • Make one really big block, if you tend towards small bits (I'm looking at myself here).  I always admire single, large log cabin blocks but how about this giant pinwheel
  • Try working with some smaller units, if you tend to head for large ones.  This quilt, made in the early 1900s, is mind-blowing (the smallest pieces are about 1/2"). Or how about this one? (IQSCM: Ardis and Robert James Collection).
  • Throw some large scale prints into the mix.  This could work if you simply add large scale prints in with solids or small prints - here's a nice example - or what about this quilt by Alethea Ballard, who has used a large scale print to sash her housetop blocks?  A quick rummage through my fabric boxes threw up lots of stuff that I like, but that has been passed over lots and lots of times, mostly because I couldn't quite figure out what I wanted to do with it.

  • Try adding very fine lines to a piece, like Kathleen Loomis or this quilt by Paula Kovarik
  • Find an inspiration piece that fits, like the ones above and then see where it leads you
Given that this is improv your end result doesn't even have to look like it started here - it really is about the process as much as the product.  Of course you are more than welcome to come up with your own take on the theme and push it in any direction you like.

I'm calling this Playing with Scale, so if you post on instagram you can use #AHIQ or "AHIQplayingwithscale and there is  a pinterest board with lots more lovely examples. 


10 comments:

  1. I love using scraps. And I'm looking forward to seeing all fantastic quilts from you talented people. I don't know if there is a deadline for uploading quilts.

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  2. This is an interesting challenge. There are so many ways to tackle the subject of scale. I think I have a couple UFO's that would easily fit the theme and now I am thinking about how I could play with scale with quilting an oversized log cabin quilt. I will go home after work and pull it out of the pile. I will post a picture of it tomorrow and start to play with how I am going to quilt it playing with the idea of scale.

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  3. Of all my current projects, I think I'll take the Winkel inspired colors and change my approach to fit with this Playing With Scale challenge. Not sure what I'll do, but it won't be a mini spiderweb quilt.

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  4. I'm glad you chose this of the three ideas you've been mulling because it's the one I understand the least. Well, some ideas sound very straightforward but others will require more thought. This is something we can all sink our teeth into - lots of ways to develop change of scale.
    There are some old blocks in my stash that may work... Must get busy.

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  5. I love the idea of playing with scale. It's something I've been thinking about on occasion but haven't. It's going to be tough deciding on a project--I have so many ideas already!

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  6. Wonderfully exciting to read about the next prompt this morning! It's something that doesn't feel super comfortable, but exactly what is needed at this point in my quilting efforts.:) Love all the great inspiration photo's and links. There's one that is tempting to try and recreate, but of course my mind is off and spinning in every direction. What if? What if? These link-ups have been such a joy to me. Thanks for keeping the format in such a way that we can easily incorporate the new challenges into our current 'work'!

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  7. Oh boy! I can tell I'm going to learn something from you "improvers" again this year and I am happy!!

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  8. Oh! I think you gave me a much needed nudge to move forward with a few UFOs that fit variations of Playing with Scale! It should be fun, once again, to see how everyone interprets the challenge.

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  9. Playing with scale is a good idea, lots of possibilities for sure.
    I like the large scale print background effect like in Alethea's quilt.

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  10. I think your idea for the first invitational of the year is an excellent one,I doubt I would choose to go small, especially after seeing the minute pieces in your second photo, would love too know how long this one took to make!
    This is going to be very interesting for all concerned, I certainly now need to work through a few possible ideas.
    Quilts involving strips always appeal to me and yet like yourself I do admire those made of just one giant block, lots of food for thought with this - do I go with my usual bright and bold fabrics or play with saturated solids or throw caution to the winds and try something completely new!!
    Whichever way we choose to go it's going to be exciting and so good to have more time to play.


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