31 December 2019

First AHIQ Prompt, 2020

Improvisational quilting takes many forms. Some people think it means bright {or even gaudy} colors. Others think it means mismatched seams. This list of "rules" goes on and on until it robs us of all the joy of creativity. So stop and make a New Year's resolution to listen to your inner voice, to commit to making what you need, to expressing the inchoate ideas filling your heart.

Kaja and I take a very broad view. We believe improvisation means figuring out a way to use your resources - including but not limited to fabric, thread, dye, embellishments - in any ways that meet your ideas. Perfection is not the goal; completion is. Finishing one often leads to further visions as we meet the technical realities of creation. Everything is welcome but utility quilts delight our hearts - those that are made to be used rather than stored in a box to be taken out on special occasions only.

Our goals for this blog include encouraging recognition of the originality and creativity of every creator, to see the tangible evidence of love quilts represent. We invite new quilters to take up this craft. We hope to teach future generations to admire quilts and to love these gifts from their family.

So it could be a new block you are working out, or a fabric you've wanted to use, or the need to put warm covers on your family's beds. You might want to stretch yourself to sew scraps together more creatively or to test a new technique. All experimentation means improvising. Use of limited resources can also equate with improvisation.

Please share your work here and participate in the prompts as you feel inspired. They are designed broadly to encompass many definitions, to spark individual ideas and we hope this site is a general location to share with each other.

Kaja and I email each other regularly discussing future prompts and we both had the simple hourglass block in our lists. Hourglasses and the turn of the year both mark time so this seemed quite timely. {Pun intended.}

It's a very simple block made of four quarter square triangles {QSTs.} It can be cut with rotary tools or freehand. Sujata Shah made several quilts using this block in Cultural Fusion Quilts.  The traditional arrangement highlights the hourglass shape by using a light and a dark fabric on opposite sides but there is no reason to follow that suggestion unless it inspires you. It can be a center or a border; it can be an entire quilt or part of a larger block such as an Ohio Star. Scrappy or limited palette. Large or small.

Or you can take the idea and do something else with it. That's improvisation. What does it mean to you?

We invite you to join us in exploring Hourglass. Use the hashtag #AHIQhourglass so we can find your work and post your progress on the AHIQ blog here.

Happy New Year!


Quiltdivajulie said...

I have two fabric pulls that are ideal for this challenge. Time will tell how I do with this. Thanks to both of you for offering us these prompts and space to share our work!

Monica said...

Lovely post! And hey, I have a bunch of half made blocks for this sitting in a drawer! Happy new year!

audrey said...

Looking forward to it!

Mary Marcotte said...

I like the hourglass block. Already there are "inchoate ideas floating around."

patty a. said...

My goal this year is to reduce my scraps and hourglass blocks would work great for using scraps especially those triangles! I will be jumping in on this train!

Cathy said...

I like this prompt! I have an hourglass UFO to move forward that is inspired by a vintage quilt (Clarissa); also sewed together some leftover QSTs for a medallion and have another idea that I'm going to try with crumbs.

Ann said...

It seems like lots of us will be able to try this prompt. How exciting to see the results!

Janie said...

Hour glass blocks are great fun!

Mary Ellen said...

Are we able to share our work here, other than comments? Can we post photos?
N I don't see how to do this.

Ann said...

Mary Ellen, I sent you an email, too. Read the "who we are and how to join" page, make sure your websites are https and send one of us a request. Thanks.