Friday, October 15, 2010

Vivacious Curvy Quilts

Every once in a while a newly-published book makes me sit up and take notice for one reason or another. Dianne Hire’s Vivacious Curvy Quilts is one of those books. The colorful cover gives you a sense of what you are about to discover in the pages that follow: Template-free ways to cut, sew, and combine curvy pieced blocks into dynamic and creative quilts. Lots of clear illustrations and dozens of visually-interesting original quilts accompany Dianne’s well-written text. This is truly a playtime book, one that gives you the technical and design tools to venture successfully into quilt innovation. Dianne has graciously given me permission to share some of her quilt images and book ideas here.

Most of the blocks begin with a stack of 4 to 6 compatible fabrics cut into squares which are then rotary cut in a variety of gentle curves. For those with no curved-piecing experience, Dianne recommends starting with a gentle “continuous curve” cut (shown in the first-from-left block  in the top row of the quilt above). Vessel-shaped or chalice “curvies” start with a rectangle instead of a square, elongating your block designs. Corner curvies, below, are another variation.
Dianne’s quilt Curvaceous Squares, shown at the top of this posting, illustrates three different types of curvies: continuous, circular, and corner. Here are four different configurations for side-to-one-corner curvies:
 In Rain Clouds, shown below, Dianne experimented with larger rectangles and quickly put together this lovely wallhanging in under just three hours.

A final chapter in the book is devoted to bindings and edge finishing, including details on how to finish a curvy quilt with “stick-outs,” like Saffron, shown below.

If you love traditional geometric quilt designs but are ready to venture into more contemporary and original quilts, you will no doubt enjoy this book. AQS members receive a discount on this and other books ordered through our website,

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