Nancy Crow workshop: strip-piecing days 3 through 5

On the third day of Nancy Crow’s Strip-Piecing and Restructuring workshop, we began a new assignment. We started sewing strip-pieced combinations designed to teach us about luminous colors. That is, glowing versus dull colors, or what I came to think of as “dead and alive colors.” We did some sections with bright versus dull colors, and then another set with just browns, grays, blacks, and white. It was quite a bit harder that it initially seemed. Then we added some stripes, plaids, and prints. Once again, all of these were cut freehand, and we were supposed to pay attention to proportions while we tried to create beautiful little combinations. I just kept trying to make nice curvy and wiggly lines. Here are some of the striped fabrics I created.

In all, we created about thirty combinations of stripped fabrics. That way, we would have a wide variety of options for our final project. All this cutting, sewing, and pressing took a day and a half, and we ended up working very fast toward the end!

Next came the restructuring. We cut off strips from the ends of everything we sewed and start playing around with how they could be creatively sewing back together. Sometimes we sewed them to themselves, or maybe to another section of pieced fabric, or maybe just to a plain piece of fabric. The idea was to create interesting little compositions. These are a few that I was playing with.

Once we liked one of the combinations, we were supposed to create repeats of it so we could create a large composition comprised of units. I ended up making repeats of these units.

Our final composition was supposed to have an intensely busy area and a quieter area. After quite a bit of experimenting with different compositions and orientations, my final composition looks something like this. I ran out of time, so I didn’t finish sewing the sections together, but now that gives me time to live with my composition a while so I can decide if I want to change anything. I’m not so sure about the left hand section. If I keep it, I think I will make it longer instead of cutting off the other sections to the right. I think I would like the longer proportions better. Or, I may just replace or eliminate the left hand panel altogether.

I certainly don’t feel like I’ve mastered the information that Nancy presented in this five day workshop, but I think it was a really good introduction, and I really want to learn it better. There are so many possibilities for applying all this!

6 Responses

  1. Sharon Driver

    What an interesting workshop! Definitely one of those bucket list experiences I’d like to have…….

    Thanks for sharing!

  2. Ann Wiseman

    Hmm. I like the panel on the left. It is definitely “quieter”. It reminds me of cracked and peeling paint! : ) You definitely worked hard in this workshop!!

  3. Sue DeSantis

    Wow, Maria! this looks like hard work! I love what you’ve ended up with – I have a slight preference for the red/green strip. I like the way the horizontal lines are a bit curvy in the midst of all those boxes and rectangles!

  4. Belinda

    Thanks so much for sharing! I lean toward the left brown/yellow panel. Love the stair steps it makes, but the others are so fun also.

  5. Sharon Robinson

    Hi Maria, Thanks for sharing the great posts about your workshop. I took the same one in February, so it was very interesting to hear another take on the experience. I really loved the process and am trying to “practice” until I can take another workshop next year. (And practice buying solid fabric, lol). I’m glad I wasn’t the only one completely baffled by her version of “warm” and “cool!” In my mind I called them “glowing” and “dull” or something like that, but I struggled to see it at all. I really liked your final composition, especially the green part. There are a number of posts on my blog about my experience too as well as some about the composition I’m STILL struggling with after three months!