I received a quilt book as a Christmas gift that I am enjoying. It is called “Lovely Landscape Quilts” by Cathy Geier and can be purchased either at your local quilt shop or at Amazon through this link: Lovely Landscape Quilts: Using Strings and Scraps to Piece and Applique Scenic Quilts .
This book presents some very simple techniques for creating impressive landscape quilts. The techniques produce results that will be satisfying to an experienced quilter, but at the same time are simple enough for a confident beginner. I like the techniques enough that I am considering creating a new class based on this book. First I have to make a few quilts so I am sure I can get good results and be confident that my students will also get good results. I started with a very simple quilt using scraps.
Before describing the landscape techniques she uses in the book, Cathy Geier presents a range of landscape quilts by other artists. The very first artist presented is Ann Brauer. If you are interested in Ann’s quilts, she has an Etsy store where she sells her quilts and smaller items. She may also have a website or blog, but I haven’t looked for those.
The quilt I “copied” is called Rainbows of Summer. It uses a string piecing technique, making blocks using four to six fabric strips of varying widths. I started with paper foundation rectangles that I cut 6 inches by 8 inches. The paper rectangles were good for ensuring that my blocks were all the right size, but tearing out the paper afterward was tedious so I might try making the blocks using a template rather than a paper foundation the next time.
I spent a lot of time sorting fabrics into colors of the rainbow and cutting strips. My strips were all about 9-10 inches long and varied in width from 1 inch to 2 inches. Some of them were narrower at one end that at the other; this adds some visual interest to the finished quilt.
Sewing the blocks is very straightforward once you have selected the colors for each horizontal row of the quilt. I laid out piles of strips and picked out assorted fabrics as I went along, trying not to repeat the same fabric in one block and to vary the use of the fabric so that it did not always appear in the same position. I had 10-15 different fabrics for each color, so I had enough to choose from to create nice variety. Once I had enough blocks of each color, I squared up all the blocks to 6 by 8 inches. Then I assembled the quilt top one horizontal row at a time.
Here is the finished quilt top:
I really like the variety of fabrics and found this a great way to use up scraps. Of course I had lots of scrap strips left over so I will have to dream up another project to use them!