STRIP-PIECING & RESTRUCTURING• Length: 5 days
• Level: Beginning to Intermediate
• Sewing machine used
Note: This 5-day class contains different groups of design exercises from The Best of Strip-Piecing I and II. (All of Nancy Crow’s workshops are based on figure/ground composition and progress sequentially from beginning to very advanced composition).
Strip-piecing is a way of creating a “fabric vocabulary” out of existing fabrics that have been cut selvage to selvage. It is an invaluable way to learn more about color, value usage, proportions, line and shape in a very fluid manner.
This 5-day class begins with Design Exercises for creating “simple strip-pieced fabrics” in color and value that will then be used in a medium size composition; as students compose this initial composition they will be challenged to work intuitively. Students will work freehand without the use of a ruler.
Next, students will begin working with their large palettes of colors, cutting out, designing, sewing and creating a wide variety of exciting new strip-pieced fabrics based on “FABRIC DESCRIPTIONS.” After finishing these fabrics, new Design Exercises will be given in which students are introduced to the concept of “restructuring.” Students will begin the process of thinking about how fabrics can be cut-up and re-combined/restructured into new fabrics or small compositions or studies.
Since students will be pinning work as it progresses onto the wall, they should bring at least 2 boxes of good ball-head pins including silk pins. All exercises will be done in direct machine-piecing technique.
Please come with an open, sponge-like mind with no agendas, ready for growth and for risk-taking.
- Optional but important: Each student should come prepared with a digital presentation/laptop or 3-6 actual quilts and be prepared to make a short (3-5 minutes maximum) but articulate presentation about their work including future goals. The Crow Timber Frame Barn provides use of a digital projector connected to a laptop.
- Sewing Machine
- Digital Camera/Printer (Canon SELPHY printer recommended)/Paper
- Swing Arm Lamp
- 24” x 36” Cutting Mat
- 7’ x 7’ Batting/Flannel (White) on which to pin work (optional)
- Extra Large Rotary Cutter and Blades
- Iron/Iron Cleaner (optional as Barn has irons)
- Ball-Head Pins (very fine and regular size)
- Small Water Spray Bottle for Ironing
- Glue to Adhere Snapshots into Sketchbook
- Multiple Outlet Power Strip/Adaptors/Heavy Duty Extension Cords
- Sketchbook/Pens/Other Supplies You Want
- Packing Tape if shipping boxes (plus return labels)
- CROSSROADS, 2007, Breckling Press (catalog from one of Nancy’s exhibitions) - signed/dated editions available at the Crow Timber Frame Barn
- NANCY CROW, 2006, Breckling Press (book covering Nancy's work from 1989-2005) - signed/dated editions available at the Crow Timber Frame Barn
- NANCY CROW, MONO-PRINTS: SELF-PORTRAITS: FOCUS, 2012 - signed/dated editions available at the Crow Timber Frame Barn
- COLOR IMPROVISATIONS 2 & CIRCULAR ABSTRACTIONS: BULL’S EYES QUILTS, 2016, (books from two exhibitions curated by Nancy) - signed/dated editions available at the Crow Timber Frame Barn
Unfortunately, the following titles are out of print, but your local library may have them or order on Amazon.com.
- GRADATIONS: FROM THE STUDIO OF NANCY CROW, Quilt House Publishing
- NANCY CROW: WORK IN TRANSITION, American Quilters’ Society
- NANCY CROW: QUILTS AND INFLUENCES, American Quilters’ Society
- NANCY CROW: IMPROVISATIONAL QUILTS, C&T Publishing
6 yards each of:
- SOLID BLACK and SOLID WHITE
- SOLID OPAQUE COLORS (wide range in light, medium light, medium, medium dark, dark values so you can be free to work) - reds, pinks, blues, teals, greens, limes, violets, browns, yellows, golds, oranges, purples, maroons, turquoises, rusts, etc.
- GRAYS (wide range in light, medium light, medium, medium dark, dark)
- TANS (wide range in light, medium light, medium, medium dark, dark)
- OFF-WHITES ...warm white, cold white, cream
- GRAPHIC BOLD GEOMETRIC (high contrast) PRINTS, PLAIDS, CHECKS, BATIKS, HAND-PRINTED
- Bring BOTH the GLOWING and the FLAT versions of as many of these colors as possible.
- Please wash and shrink all fabrics! No need to iron though if you fold at end of drying cycle.
- We will use everything listed above so do not decide to leave anything out!
- DO NOT BRING FAT QUARTERS. We will be cutting strips selvage to selvage.
- Do not bring marbled fabrics.
- Bring enough variety so you are not hamstrung!
NOTES REGARDING FABRIC SUPPLY LIST
Yes, the rumor is true!!! Yes, I do ask that each student bring lots of fabrics. My personal theory embraces the belief that one will be freer to be creative if one has many fabric choices available in class. After 30+ years of teaching, I consider each class I teach to be on a graduate level and therefore I expect students to arrive prepared with all necessary supplies. In that regard, I have outlined those fabrics we will use in this class. For some students, my fabric supply list will seem overwhelming in quantity and variety, while for other students, the selection they bring will never be good enough.
About solid colors - the more shades you have to work with, the more you will learn about how to work with color. Color is Joyous!!! Color does not cause pain!!! Take DELIGHT in color!!! Working in color does not mean only using BOLD colors or HOT colors; working in color means learning to be versatile in all types of colors.
Overall during the class, we will use many solid colors, but still.... please bring the requested prints. When choosing both solid colors and prints to bring to class, be sure to bring both warm and cool tones.
I caution you to not bring mostly middle value solids, rather bring a wide variety, including:
- Light values
- Medium light values
- Medium values
- Medium dark values
- Dark values
GLOWING tones: Any colors that are mixed with yellow and which have a glow coming off the surface.
FLAT tones: Any colors that are mixed with black and which have a dullness and subdued nature.
Many students arrive with their own hand-dyed solids or stacks they have purchased from other
dyers. By all means, bring hand-dyed if you want but they need to be opaque and not have multiple values swimming across them ... meaning white or light splotches on dark colors.
But flat solids (dyed commercially) are equally acceptable.
I usually work with flat colors or my own subtly dyed flat colors. My own palette includes approximately 500 shades.
I cannot specifically tell you to only bring 1/2 yard cuts of each color because I know we will be using at least a yard of some to many colors depending on each student’s color preferences. If you bring a yard of each – say 5 blues, 5 reds, 5 yellows, 5 greens, etc., but one each in light values, medium light values, medium values, medium dark values, & dark values, that would be better than not having enough. So bring 1 yard of as many colors as you can afford and shorter lengths for the rest.
Remember, we will be working selvage to selvage.