Register Soon! Cindy Grisdela Only Has a Few Openings Left!

Fearless Curved Piecing

Artful Improv: Permission to Play

Don’t miss this chance to learn from Cindy Grisdela! Cindy will teach two classes for GAAQG, September 17 and 19.  Register for the Friday class, Fearless Curved Piecing, to learn two different methods for curved piecing, that are very forgiving and easy to master. This class only has a few openings left!

On Sunday, Cindy will teaching Artful Improv:  Permission to Play.  This class is SOLD OUT.



Cindy’s approach to teaching is to show some techniques and encourage her students to develop their own style. She’s passionate about helping others find their own creativity and believes that we all have the ability to be creative, given support and encouragement.

The Quilt Day lecture on Saturday, September 18, is titled Free Motion Quilting with Style. GAAQG members can attend the lecture for free. The lecture is open to non-members for a $10 fee.

Cindy creates lines and shapes with fabric, then adds stitching to add dimension and texture to her quilts, in effect “painting” with fabric and thread.  In her improvisational style, each step in the process grows from, and builds on, the previous steps, with the stitching used to integrate all the elements.  She says she likes to “feel the stitches growing” as she stitches. The ability to express herself through her work with fabric and thread is what “feeds” her soul, and she hopes to foster that joy in others.

She’s appeared on Quilting Arts TV and is a friend of Maria Shell, another popular GAAQG improv teacher!





As a child Cindy was always interested in making things and exploring different art media, and her parents were supportive and encouraging of her artistic endeavors. She learned to sew when she was young, making clothes for herself, as many of us did.

She came across quilting quite by accident when she found a spread about quilting in a women’s magazine while she was in college.  She was enthralled by it and decided to try it.  She already knew how to sew, she reasoned, so what could be so hard about making a queen-size quilt?  She quickly found out that it was not as easy as she thought, but she was very excited about the possibilities!

Cindy made traditional quilts for a while, but quickly got tired of following other people’s patterns, so she started tweaking the patterns.  Then she discovered Gwen Marston’s book, Liberated Quiltmaking, which introduced her to the idea of making quilts without templates or patterns.  It showed her a way to work, based on intuition and emotion, in addition to skill and technique.  This book and others helped Cindy to develop a style of her own.

A multimedia artist’s group in Cindy’s community welcomed her, and recognized her work as art, even though her media were not the traditional ones.  This group provided inspiration for her, and she soon started participating in local, then regional art shows.  This led to bigger art fairs, and Cindy participated in the Ann Arbor Art Fairs for several years.  She relates that it was very inspiring to interact with other artists and allowed her to travel around the country.

Cindy has authored two books: Artful Improv: Explore Color Recipes, Building Blocks & Free Motion Quilting, was published by C&T Publishing in November 2016.

Her second book, due to be published in September, is called Adventures in Improv Quilts.  It will include information about color and design and will also provide guided exercises for folks to try on their own.

Cindy Grisdela Art Quilts:

Instagram @cindygrisdelaquilts

Facebook @cindygrisdelaquilts



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This post was written by Susan Schwandt

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