This past Sunday I took a workshop with Malka Dubrawsky at Sewing Party in Laguna Hills. I have seen Malka's projects in Stitch Magazine and in the Flickr "Fresh Modern Quilts" pool so I started to follow her blog. When I heard she was coming to California I was really excited to have the opportunity to take a workshop from her. She taught "Strings Attached", which you can find in her book, "Fresh Quilting: Fearless Color, Design, and Inspiration" as a potholder and trivet, although we made larger versions. This was my first formal quilting class I've ever taken. Everything I know about quilting I learned by taking my sewing machine and projects to quilt shops and just sewing with quilters. It's funny that rather than take a class to learn to make a very intricate pattern, I instead sign up to learn about improvisational piecing where there is no pattern and no real rules. I have to say that at first it felt strange but by the end I felt really empowered and loved the process. Malka encouraged us to trust our own eyes, which essentially means to have confidence in yourself as an artist.
I created this from fabric I had in my stash, starting with the solids and sparingly adding in a few prints with stripes and circles. I like the organic, hand-drawn look of the circles. Building on the orange stripes in one of the prints, I add orange to build up some of my wonky squares in the middle that turned out a bit more rectangular (we were cutting without rulers afterall, nothing here is squared!). I decided to keep the orange "boxed in" by not using it in any of the outside squares.
I shared this at our May meeting of the Orange County Modern Quilt Guild show and tell (my first time bringing something to show) and I was really flattered by the feedback. The ladies liked the color palette and gave some good suggestions for quilting it. I post an update to show you how it turns out!