Improv Patchwork - Free Form Piecing
Tutor: Janice Gunner MSDCCourse Code: 1920-07


A course with a difference! Using an inspiration source, I will show you how to design your own unique and exciting patchwork blocks. This liberated improv/free form piecing will transform the way you think of block patchwork! You will have the opportunity to include strip pieced and other free cut methods transforming your work as you go. During the workshop you will make a series of samples or begin turning them into a piece of work, using machine piecing.


For some years now there have been some amazing quilts produced using improv/free form piecing with straight line geometric shapes and/or curved shapes or strips. I'm talking free cut piecing with no templates. Some are random shapes, seemingly put together without any thought, others look carefully pre-planned, but most of these quilts are dynamic, free and often a riot of colour, whereas others are more subtle. Curves are sometimes gently flowing or excited wiggly curves, other times they are barely curves at all! Most of the techniques involve layering two or more pieces of fabric, right sides up, free cutting and then taking pieces from alternate layers and joining them, but during this workshop we will be exploring a variety of different methods, including using appliqué and quilting.

What is great about this method is the freedom that it brings to your work. You don't have to worry about rulers or precise seam allowances, or the use of pins. Just lots of enthusiasm, an open mind and to be able to use the sewing machine and iron!

Please bring with you

Choose an image as your inspiration taken from a photo or magazine cutting. It could be trees, plants, building etc
Please also bring:
Assorted plain fabrics in the colours of your theme/inspiration; up to 8 fat quarters will do but consider bringing some bigger pieces if you want to add borders to your work.
Crib sized piece of cotton or cotton/polyester wadding to use as a design wall
Similar sized backing fabric in case you complete your work ready to quilt!
Sewing kit, pins, fabric scissors etc
Rotary cutter, mat and ruler (a square ruler, if you have one, is best for this technique)
Sewing machine, don’t forget the foot pedal & lead and any specific feet you might need. Spare needles.
Small amount of fusible web (Bond-a Web) in case you want to applique on your piecing
Note pad, sketch pad and pencil, colouring pencils if you wish
Digital camera – optional
Masking tape

The following items can be purchased from your tutor

Vintage Japanese kimono fabrics – cotton and silk.
Liberating Log Cabin books



Course Location

Missenden Abbey
Great Missenden, Buckinghamshire HP16 0BD


Janice Gunner MSDC

Janice Gunner MSDC

Janice Gunner is textile artist, quilter and author. She learned how to embroider at the age of five, made her own clothes from the age of 10, has been quilting for 44 years and has spent almost 30 years of those teaching patchwork & quilting, including 23 years teaching City & Guilds courses. Janice is currently studying for a MA Textiles at UCA Farnham.

9th to 10th May 2020
Saturday to Sunday

Enrol on this Course


9.30amCoffee on arrival
9.45amWelcome and tutor introductions for all
10am-1pmTeaching session
1pmLunch for all - residents may check in
2-5.30pmTeaching session
6.45 for 7pmDinner for residents
From 7-9.15amBreakfast for residents
9.30am-1pmTeaching session
1pmLunch for all
2-5pmLast teaching session

"Excellent, enjoyable day." (Summer School 2019)