The lure of indigo is strong — the classic blue and white combination found in many Japanese textiles is cool, crisp, and so appealing.
Classic, cool blue and white paired with modern design
6 hours: From classic kimonos to denim jeans, indigo has been used by many cultures for dyeing cloth, and the Japanese have refined the use of indigo to an art form. This is the class to use all those lovely blue and white shibori fabrics you’ve dyed yourself, or use carefully curated blue and white fabrics from your stash.
Each participant will develop a simple geometric block design based on unfolded origami shapes, set a theme and create variations, and combine them into the beginning of a fresh and modern mini quilt top.
We will start out by stitching practice blocks from blue and white paper, to explore composition using minimal, modern shapes inspired by origami. A PDF will be supplied with blue and white images of fabric, which you can print at home or at a local copy center.
We’ll then translate our ideas to fabric, and I will demonstrate simple pattern making using cereal box cardboard. You will choose between three possible modern designs for your blue + white quilt top.
If you don’t have any Japanese-inspired blue and white fabric already, I recommend purchasing vintage Japanese yukata cotton fabric from OkanArts.com, where they have specially curated 3-yard packs available for your project. Please stick to the blue and white theme. You will want to have some solid dark blues plus some whites/creams to blend with the patterned fabrics.
Shop for vintage blue + white yukata cotton fabric:
This workshop is a 6-hour live-stream event, conducted on Zoom, consisting of live instruction (no recording, please). You should have the current version of Zoom installed on your computer or laptop. Guidance for getting started will be sent in advance of the workshop.
Here a short video preview of what to expect in this workshop:
Zoom Workshop Details
- Look at how to take inspiration from unfolded origami paper
- Stitch some practice blocks using blue and white paper, and explore composition using your smart phone or digital camera to take photos along the way
- Keep the lines and shapes very simple and spare for a modern look
- Transfer your design to cardboard, label and cut out pattern pieces
- Select blue and white fabrics for your simple block design
- Audition fabrics for contrast, pattern, texture and placement
- Use cardboard pattern pieces to cut out fabric, leaving a generous amount of extra fabric for seam allowances
- Sew 9-12 blocks, and explore how multiple blocks interact with each other, creating new shapes
- Sew more blocks as time allows to build up a mini quilt top
- Discuss surface design options: hand stitching and machine quilting
- Watch a demo of facing a quilt for a modern look, and joining finished quilt blocks
I will provide full hands-on instructions in class. Bring blue and white fabrics, including some solids, that you would like to use. If you’ve done some indigo dyeing, or have some vintage Japanese yukata fabrics in blue and white, they will be perfect for this workshop!
This is an all-levels workshop. You should be comfortable using your sewing machine, and it should be in good working order. I look forward to sharing and sewing with you!
“I just wanted to say thank you for the awesome class yesterday. I really enjoyed it, and you have such a relaxed and kind approach to your teaching style.
This was my first zoom class, and would definitely do it again. You’ve raised the bar for my expectations and hope other teachers can meet that standard.”
“Thank you, David for a terrific workshop! You are an inspiring teacher, well organized, enthusiastic and encouraging. So often participants in a class all leave with the same piece with little variation. In fact many students hope to replicate the teacher’s work.
However, the way you present the guidelines allows everyone to come away with something quite unique. Offering three options also gives everyone the opportunity to go beyond the class on their own and explore further. I was delighted to see the range of results.
Your suggestions to students in their fabric choices and quilting ideas were very useful. Yet you never imposed yourself more than a student requested. Many thanks. I cannot wait to do more, the 6 hours flew by!”
“I really loved your workshops this past week… I have been in a creative slump, so I needed a jolt! Can’t wait to settle in and focus and come up with something I like! Love your process. Thank you!”
“I wanted to say that I really enjoyed and benefited from your class today. I loved your insights on design; it is especially meaningful to me as a newbie to a modern quilt guild. Your love of indigo is inspiring. I have had several indigo pieces for many years, yet feared cutting them. Now, I have direction. You did such a good job of giving your attention to a full class, working the “room” to help everyone. Kudos to you for a job well done! ”
AVAILABLE VIA ZOOM!
This live-stream workshop is available to book using Zoom technology. It is 6 hours long with regular breaks. I would be happy to arrange this workshop for your guild or artists’ group, please contact me for details. I also will give this workshop in person, when we are allowed to meet again.
Contact David if you are interested in future dates for this class, or to book this workshop for your guild.