Through the happy sharing world that is pinterest, I've come across the stunning improvisational quilts of Susanna Allen Hunter. I had never heard of improvisational quilting before - the process of making up the creative design of a quilt as you go along rather than pre-planning. This practice was particularly popular with poorer communities across rural America.
Susanna Allen Hunter was an African-American quilter from rural Alabama, who used old clothing, scraps of fabric and sacking to create these abstract quilts from the 30s through until the 70s. I think they are so beautiful. I love the combination of fabrics & textures, the uneven lines, and how modern they look yet they were borne out of such a practical need for creating warmth and comfort from whatever materials were to hand. I'm so inspired by them and have been thinking about what a great use of my scrap bag this would be.
All the images below are from the Henry Ford Museum and their flickr page.