More on Improv

The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters: A Guide to Creating, Quilting, and Living CourageouslyThe Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters: A Guide to Creating, Quilting, and Living Courageously by Sherri Lynn Wood

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

My opinion changed as I progressed.

At first I wasn’t thrilled with the assumption that I didn’t do improv because I was afraid of failure and that I needed meditations to decrease anxiety. I am not afraid of failure, and I try many new things. I am not convinced that I need to abandon use of rulers entirely. I did not like the first several “scores” (what Wood offers instead of patterns). But I usually finish a book I start, and as I continued I began to like the samples better and  Wood also decreased the assumption of fear. So by the end, I enjoyed the book.

In the ten “scores” and the color chapter there are an interesting variety of approaches to improv piecing. I’d say I started out with about two or three of her tactics in my repertoire. It was good to have options expanded. Her explanations were mostly clear (and I reasoned, on those few times when I didn’t understand, So what? it is improv.)

A valuable section is her tools section where Wood explains techniques unique to improv: how to solve problems and inconsistencies that occur because of the free style cutting and stitching, like bumps and bubbles and matching up irregular seams other than straightening them.

A valuable book for quilters who want to do improv in more ways than random bits of fabric and wonky log cabin.

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5 Comments

Filed under quilting

5 responses to “More on Improv

  1. dezertsuz

    LOL, you are more tolerant than I am. I’m afraid I would have abandoned reading it. Obviously, she’s made assumptions based on a small sample. I don’t want to do crazy piecing as a normal practice. I don’t mind strings or wonky log cabins, or even mish-mash blocks. I just don’t want that as my FOCUS for quilting. That’s for my leader-enders and to keep from wasting fabric. I’ve no intention of cutting up perfectly good fabric to make improv designs. Another way you are more tolerant than I am. Good thing quilting has room for a lot of different styles! LOL

  2. Cher

    thanks for sharing your review.

  3. I’m enjoying her book so far, having done only the first score. At first I was a little put off by all the self-promotion that has accompanied publication, but I think that’s what is expected of authors these days. I think it’s the most original book I’ve seen recently.

  4. Ah thanks for this review, I have been eyeing this book. I am into improv so maybe I will consider getting it (to add to the 370 other craft books in my collection – ha!

  5. I enjoyed your review… and I agree, the ‘tools’ section was useful, indeed for any quilter! I also found the improv gallery sections interesting to see just how others had actually interpreted her ideas!

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