This contest is now closed. The winner is…………. Debbie Harman! Debbie – check your inbox for an email from us! Thanks to everyone who participated!
Want another chance to win a great prize? Amy’s giving away an EQ7! Head over to During Quiet Time for details.
Amy uses EQ7 to design her incredible paper-pieced blocks and quilts and so we had to share them with you! Plus she just released a new book, “Improv Paper Piecing.” Read our Q&A to find out more about the book, how Amy uses EQ7 for paper piecing and see a few quilts from her book! Plus, there’s a giveaway!
EQ: Hi Amy! Congratulations on the release of your new book “Improv Paper Piecing.” Tell us a bit about yourself and the book.
Amy: From the time I was a child, I have always loved to create. My interests have been broad, ranging from drawing and painting to printmaking and sewing. I studied Art History and worked for years as a museum curator. When my children were little, I launched my web site, During Quiet Time, where I share my modern quilt designs and patterns. I have authored two books, Intentional Piecing: From Foundation Piecing to Fussy Cutting and Improv Paper Piecing: A Modern Approach to Quilt Design. I am really excited about my newest book which is now shipping! I am a self-confessed paper piecing fanatic and have combined the freedom of design that paper piecing offers with the quirks and spontaneity of improv to come up with a new approach to design that I am calling improv paper piecing.
EQ: If you had to pick the best part of your book, what would it be and why?
Amy: I think my book is approachable for those who are a little nervous about improv. I hear people say that they do not know how to approach an improv project and are worried about not liking the results when they are done and wasting all that fabric. My book provides not only 10 patterns for those who love the look but don’t want to design their own quilts but also design prompts and exercises to walk you step by step through the design process so it isn’t scary. I start by using traditional blocks to explain the process of numbering and grouping paper pieced sections and also as the first improv design prompts. This makes every quilter comfortable right away! As Pat Sloan said, “Amy erases all fears of trying something new with chapter after chapter of lessons to help you branch into her freeform, improvisational-style paper piecing techniques.”
EQ: What are your favorite quilts in the book and why?
Amy: Oh gosh, that’s hard. I like different quilts for different reasons!
One of my favorites is Paper Trail. This quilt design looks so good in all different color schemes (I mocked a number of them up in EQ before deciding) but was also perfect for my stash of low volume fabrics. Plus, I had been wanting to make a cinnamon colored quilt and this was a great opportunity to do that. In my book, I confess that sometimes I think seams are beautiful…and the seams in Paper Trail are beautiful.
I also love Catawampus! I used a wide variety of fall inspired solids and prints and really enjoyed selecting the fabric strips as I sewed. I have never used yellow as a background fabric color before so that was a fun departure for me. I love the way it turned out.
EQ: What role did EQ7 play in the creation of this book?
Amy: I used EQ7 for all my design work. I improvisationally sketched my blocks in EQ and then put the blocks through a series of layout possibilities. I took advantage of the ability to easily rotate my blocks and flip them to create powerful, modern layouts. Here is an example of the stages that my Peacock Crossing quilt went through during the design process.
EQ: In your opinion, how does EQ7 compare to other methods of designing?
Amy: I enjoy using EQ7 because it saves me so much time. I could accomplish the same thing through sketching and then a series of more accurate drawings and photocopies, etc. But it would take me so much longer. There are other programs that are not made exclusively for quilting that could also get me where I want to go but require a lot more knowhow and training. I was able to learn EQ7 on my own and apply it to my design work relatively quickly.
EQ: What advice would you give to someone who is on the fence about buying EQ7?
Amy: I think that you need to know yourself. If you are more likely to follow patterns, or just want to select, layout and recolor traditional blocks and/or you are intimidated by software programs, EQ Mini might suit you just fine. If you are a quilter who wants to design his or her own quilts from scratch, I would highly recommend EQ7.
EQ: Thank you so much for doing this interview with me, Amy. Where can people find more information about you and your book?
Amy: I have a page set up on my blog all about my book. You can visit it here. You can purchase the book on Amazon or get a signed copy directly from my in my Etsy shop.
Please take a moment to visit my blog and my pattern shop.
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Amy was nice enough to let us borrow her quilts for our booth at QuiltCon in Savannah so I had to share a photo of that too. She even did a book signing! So many people stopped by to admire her work. Can’t wait to see more of her EQ creations!
We will give away 1 copy of Amy’s new book, “Improv Paper Piecing.”
To enter, leave a comment below and tell us which of Amy’s quilts is your favorite! (View Amy’s quilts here.)
Rules: One comment per person. Comment must include the name of one of Amy’s quilts. Entries accepted until Tuesday, March 14th at 11:59pm EST. Contest open to U.S. and Canada residents only.
Winner will be selected at random and announced Wednesday, March 15th. Good luck!