The Ugly Fabric Challenge

Quilt Show on a Windy Day.

2007. Machine pieced; appliqued; hand quilted. 29 inches by 34 inches.

A group of eight of us quilters each brought a piece of what we considered 'ugly' to one of our meetings. Each piece of fabric was divided among us and we took our little piles of mismatched fabrics home with us with the challenge to make a quilt.

I wasn't creative enough to make a single quilt from the fabrics so I made a bunch of mini quilts from them -- then got carried away and made a bunch more. The little quilts range in size from 2.5 inches square to 5.5 inches square.

Paper-pieced bear paw and Amish quilts each 4.5 inches square.
I used Electric Quilt to print the patterns.
Information about some other quilts and details.

Brown stars: 4.5 inches square. Brown printed fabric.
Toile: 3.75 inches square; paper-pieced using EQ pattern.
Red/green: 3 inches square; woven.
Blue/white sampler: 3 inches square; printed fabric.
Kokopelli: 4 inches square; machine-pieced.
Fused flowers: 3.75 inches square.
Bow: 4 inches square; embroidered on pink/white fabric.
Chair: 3 inches wide; paper-pieced -- adapted from Cynthia England pattern.

Quilts by other members of the group:

Gaile's Washerwoman has 3D ruffles on her clothing.

Squares. Machine pieced, hand quilted. 35 inches square. Made by Rose Kotzalas.

Rose says: The blocks are 3 1/4 inch square and are log cabins. My contention is that if you cut fabrics small enough anything goes together. Some of the ugly fabrics had large scale designs, giving my small cuts more color and value choices. For instance, the orange fabric had a range of values from light to medium-dark. The black and yellow African fabric did double duty, providing very dark and medium-light cuts. And a kokopeli designed fabric yielded a rainbow of color slices.

All fabrics were used. Some totally, some just barely. But they all happily coexist on the only fabric I added -- a neutral cream background. Despite its ugly beginnings, I think it turned out just fine.

Susan's fabric basket
shows all of the ugly fabrics
we worked with.

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