Improv Pillows in Black + White
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In her book The Happiness Project, Gretchen Ruben talks about her love for the phrase “X is the new Y” as in “40 is the new 30” or “sleep is the new sex.” Well, I’d like to coin my own version of that statement by declaring,“Black-and-white improv is the new color improv.”
Lest you think that improvising with black and white means no color, this process allows solids in particular, but also selected stripes and prints, to really shine. Using these fabrics in select places, primarily to help the block components fit together, makes these spots of color or pattern all the more intense. As in traditional improvisation that is focused on color, the final product with this approach, despite being based on traditional blocks, has a distinctly modern aesthetic and visually works whether the block is standard or supersized.
Finished Size: Makes 1 pillow
- Fabric for pillow top
- 1/2 yd. black (Simple Strips, 3/4 yd.)
- 1/2 yd. white (Simple Strips, 3/4 yd.)
- 7–10 bright solids, 5" × 10" or larger
- Backing, solid color, 1/2 yd.
- Muslin, 24" × 24"
- Zipper, 18" or 22"
- Batting, 24" × 24"
- Binding, ¼ yd. (optional finish)
Originally Published:Modern Patchwork, Summer 2015.
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