YOTS2017 / What is Improv Quilting and Do I Do It?

Quilting is all about following a pattern, measuring, planning and being precise.
A lot of quilters quilt like this, some of us work differently. 


When I started quilting again, I never used a pattern, I made things up as I went along. I developed what I called my "squares and strips" quilts by sewing together whatever I came across. Now I tend to take more inspiration from classic blocks or things I see other quilters doing, not just the fabric it's self. No matter what I take inspiration from, I don't use a pattern or a guide, I don't measure. 

When I was young, I learned to quilt from very strict and traditional quilters, but even as they taught me, their styles changed and grew. When I returned to quilting, I discovered improv quilters ranging from the quilters of Gee's Bend to new modern improvisationalists. Nowadays improv quilting is all the rage! 

"Improvisation: the art or act of composing, uttering, executing, or arranging anything without previous preparation. "


The definition above, doesn't precisely fit what I think of as improve quilting, but it does fit. Improv, to me, is going into a project with no clear finish but perhaps an inspiration, an idea, or a image that evolves as you go using swatches, sketches, references, trial and error, and anything else that helps you get to the end of your work. It's an exciting endeavor bc you are making it up as you go to see what happens at the end. It's a bit like putting together a puzzle in that way except the image "on the box", or in your head, is blurry so that you don't really know what you will end up with until you get there.  

Improv quilting means never know how much fabric one will need, but also often using what you have at hand. It goes well with my Year Of The Stash goals. 


Here's what my YOTS stash report looks like this month:
Fabric Added Since Last Update: Approximately 0 yd
Fabric Added Year to Date: Approximately 42.75 yd
Fabric Used Since Last Update: Approximately .5 yd
Fabric Used Year to Date: Approximately 14 yd

How many of my readers are improv quilters?