In 2009, PP ran a monthly journal quilt challenge, and we thought we might like to revisit some of the techniques we explored.
Journal Quilts are like a kind of a block of the month scheme, where rather than being given the block, you are given an idea to make or a technique to try. In each issue in 2009, we highlighted a different technique and gave you some examples of journal quilts made using this technique. Over the rest of 2015, we will republish these pages here on the website, and hope you might like to experiment and try some new things, so maybe reinterpret the techniques you enjoyed in 2009.
We challenge you to make your own A4 piece using the technique, as inventively as possible, using your own theme and fabric choices. You could have a theme that runs through all your pieces, such as the weather, what you feel like on the day you made the piece or those inspiring photos you took on holiday, always intending to turn them into patchwork. Alternatively, each one could just be individual and unrelated to the others. There are so many possibilities! Once you are finished, you can upload a photo here on our website or just file the quilt away at home and put it down to experience.
Over the course of this year, we are going to have lots of exciting quilters explaining amazing techniques. All you have to do is try the technique. It may be one you love already; it may be something that has always filled you with horror. The idea is to experiment and expand your horizons, discovering hidden depths of textile skills you were unaware you had. If it doesn't work out, it doesn't matter as it is all about trying and as the size criteria is only A4 (the size of a sheet of photocopy paper), you won't have wasted too much time. At the end of the year, you will have twelve mini quiltlets, which you could display in a line around your living room, join together into a throw, large bag or simply file away for reference in case you ever want to try the technique again.
The instructions are going to be deliberately brief: the idea is not to slavishly copy our experts' quilts, but to create your own quilt and working methods. If it doesn't turn out as expected, have a think and see if you can rescue the quilt, or even part of it. It could be used as a highlight piece on a plain background or as a postcard or just put away out of sight.
If you get stuck, you're welcome to start a discussion with others making the journal quilt and see what they are doing or if they have any advice on how to improve your journal quilt in progress. Be experimental – throw out the rule book and just play – this is meant to be fun! For the moment though, make your first journal quilt and if you wish, post a photo of it.
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