Sunday, February 5, 2017

"The Grid Design Workbook"

For all of us machine quilters who are looking for some new ideas for quilting designs, this is a wonderful new book by Cindy Seitz-Krug, an award winning quilter and teacher who uses her home machine for quilting, published by AQS.

What is great about this book and a bit different is how effortlessly the "workbook" idea leads you through all kinds of lovely designs, shows you how to break them down into simple do-able elements that are controlled by a marked grid.  Sometimes in the end you see the grid, others times only curvy lines and designs that make the viewer ask "how in the world was that done???"

Below, details of Cindy's quilting:

The designs are great, but all the options she shows us with size, color of thread, scale of design, where and how to use them really help when trying to figure out what design to use where in a quilt.  There are tons of illustrations, diagrams, quilted samples to help you achieve these designs.  The workbook idea insures you will be able to start at the beginning, follow along, and get a quilted design by yourself!

One of the first grid designs I tried years ago when I was looking for a simpler method for a design of overlapping circles was one I called "Diane-shiko" (below) as it was a new way to mark and quilt an old Sashiko design.  When the marked lines are removed the circles emerge so it looks as if you quilted circles.  This is the basic idea Cindy uses to create all sorts of designs with the grid to guide you.

Above you can see the 1/2" marked grid, and the stitching around the lines to form this timeless design.  Below, the design used in one of my quilts, "Shadows of Umbria," which Cindy also has featured in her new book.

A grid design will showcase curvy designs with its formality and regularity.  These designs look difficult but many are absolutely beginner level and with some practice you'll be adding many of Cindy's designs, methods, ideas to your own quilts.  

Visit Cindy at her website and blog to find out more:  

Below, one more peek at her quilting:

If you were in some of my last classes I taught a design called "Ginkgo."  In Cindy's quilt above she uses it as fill around larger scale designs.  Below is one of my samples of this lovely design, and Cindy includes a much easier way to mark and quilt it called "Twisted Ginkgo" in this new book.  It's one of my favorite designs ever in the way it looks, and how much fun it is to quilt.

I experimented and tried Cindy's method to quilt this design, and it worked perfectly.  I'm thrilled she could explain it so well, and the diagrams and photos are exactly what you need so you too can add this design to your skills.

Congratulations to Cindy on a great book and for her recent award at Road to California for Excellence in Machine Quilting for her wholecloth quilt "Blush." 

Hope winter is giving you lots of time to quilt, and to play with ideas on your sewing machine.  

Keep quilting!  Your work gets better every day!


margaret said...

very tempted I have both your books but still struggle the quilting part of a quilt, had 12 flimsies in a pile but now working though them 7 done but they leave a lot to be desired, cannot seem to be in coytrol of my machine it takes control of me! I think maybe a bigger machine would help but not sure I can justify the cost and they say bad workmen always blame their tools maybe that is what I do too.

Diane Gaudynski said...

Margaret, Your machine is very important, but bigger is not always better. An extended arm can help as there is more room for your quilt in the machine itself, but you still are the one doing the quilting. It's not a bad idea ever to try out different/new machines and see if your quilting is easier and better.

The other thing is to slow down and work on one technique or design until it shows improvement, then use it in a quilt. There is something about working on an actual quilt top rather than a practice piece that makes you improve! Every time you master a design keep using it so that it continues to improve and add a new one to learn as well. Your library of skills will grow. If you try them all at once it's overwhelming.

Once you get to the point you don't have to think about moving the quilt, even nice stitches, thread tension, stitch length, and it is all flowing nicely then just about any motif is possible.

I like Cindy's book and grid designs as most of my students were very successful with them as they corral and contain the design in an area under the needle with guidelines so you know exactly where to quilt. They are repetitious in nature so skills are repeated and learned, and flaws do not show but blend in.

Good luck, hope your work improves and makes you happy!

Joan said...

OH ,Diane!!!
How I loved this post. There are so many quilting motifs out there everyday , that I had forgotten about this old ,favorite of yours. So this morning I drew the grid and practiced . It felt like "riding a bike".... all came back to my hands and brain. I love that you are blogging again. I took your classes so many years ago and now I am REFRESHED!!!!

Diane Gaudynski said...

Thanks Joan, hope you enjoy your rediscovered skill! It's fun to try out "old" things too....

Mrs. Plum said...

So nice to read your blogs again, Diane. I was privileged to be in one of your Empty Spools classes in 2010. My quilting definitely improved after your class, though it still has a long way to go. Thanks for your review of this book. I have wondered about it, as well as a number of other books on the market now, and appreciate your comments.

Jenny K. Lyon said...

So good to hear from you Diane! This looks like a fabulous book and I've already ordered it based on your review! Thank you.

Jocelyn said...

Beautiful and totally amazing!

QuiltShopGal said...

Thanks Diane. I love checking out new books on free-motion quilting to find more designs, tips and inspiration. I look forward to checking this one out, as I had not heard about it before. Sadly, I had heard a rumor that AQS was getting out of the publishing business. I hope it is not true as they have done such a great job publishing books from talented people, like yourself. Wouldn't be the same without AQS Publishing.


Featheronawire Sally Bramald said...

Thank you Diane. I have just ordered a copy. It isn't often there are good books on backgrounds.