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The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters: A Guide to Creating, Quilting, and Living Courageously Paperback – April 28, 2015
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A beautiful book, with lots of photos of finished quilts from beginners and experts who tested the improvisational scores. You'll love paging through and seeing so many fantastic quilts, and you'll grow as a quilter when you work with Ms. Wood's instructions.
This book is genuinely liberating; I did not realize how beautifully your work can turn out when you're not trying so hard to do everything with strict, straight lines and angles. I love that these show so much character and soul of the people who create them - I don't feel like traditional quilting really allows that as much. I am also shocked that you don't have to use a ruler at all and that you get breathtaking results nonetheless. This never occurred to me, but I love it and cannot wait to use this technique.
The pictures are incredibly bright and lovely. The projects are quite open to interpretation and offer a lot of room to put your own spin on them. The methods are easy enough that even I can understand and see myself putting this into practice without hesitation. I generally don't feel that after trying to learn something entirely new from a book (rather than video, etc.), but this is so clear and simple to read and understand that I was amazed. The results she shows, and how other people came up with such different takes on the same project guidelines she gives, are interesting and beautiful as well.
I highly recommend this book; it has already changed my view on quilting drastically and for the better. I feel fortunate to have found such a great resource that opens my eyes to the fun I can have without the strict parameters I thought had to be there!
The book is helpfully divided into five sections with the techniques at the back so that they don't distract the artist. The first two sections connect quilting to spiritual discipline and encourage the readers to allow themselves to explore without judgment. The author invites us to improvise from a 'score' and offers ten scores -- each with multiple variations.
This is not a book for those who prefer to copy quilts and it is not for the faint of heart. There are no straight lines and no pre-designed 'squares'.
The improv gallery that follows each 'score' allows the reader to see how different quilters took the same instructions and created wildly different pieces. There is no 'right' and 'wrong' to improv quilting.
There is an excellent section on colors and an equally excellent one on finishing the quilt (both with many helpful illustrations.)
I would give up every book in my library before I would give up this one!