Mar/Dec 2022 – Make A Face Challenge

Lead by PHXMQG Members Claire & Cindy – 3/12/2022

This will be a fun improv class where we will be spontaneous and create a fanciful face on the spot in a short amount of time. The face will not be realistic so it’s your chance to let loose and have purple hair or green skin if you choose! There is no sewing at this point, you will go home with your project glue basted together. Suggestion is to use fabrics from your stash.


  • 1 fat quarter for background (approx. size)
  • 1 fat quarter low volume for face (approx. size)
  • 10-15 scrap pieces in various colors/patterns – bring some to share if you have
  • Full Size Scissors (no snips)
  • Tweezers
  • Glue stick (washable) and or basting glue
  • Piece of cardboard or tube or something to transport your project home (optional)

Part One:

If you were unable to “take the challenge in person” and now you want to (presents and prizes – yay!) or just want to do another…we included the step-by-step directions. 
If you want to do this the way we did, you go one step at a time (don’t read ahead) and just let it happen. Even if it looks awful (which it might at some point) keep on going. Don’t forget this is quick improv, not fussy cutting (although that can come later).

The initial set up of the face should take around 40 min or less and then you can spend as much time tweaking and adding and finishing up. 
This is meant to be a fun improv exercise – where you will be spontaneous and create a fanciful face on the spot in a short amount of time. No rules! The face will not be realistic so it’s your chance to let loose and have purple hair or green skin if you choose! Suggestion is to use fabrics from your stash.
  1. Before you start make sure your background fabric and head/ face fabric are smooth – iron if necessary
  2. Lay down background fabric – at this point you are cutting and designing. No glue is needed until the end.
  3. Cut an egg or round shape for the head out of a piece of fabric 8” x 10” or one hand width across, 1 ½ hands for the height – Fold the fabric in halve before cutting if that is easier for you. Don’t worry about accuracy. Center on your background
  4. Cut and add the neck – a large triangle, cut off the top, curve the sides if you wish or you can cut a rectangle
  5. Cut the eyes, 2 at a time, an almond or football shape, and place half way down in middle of face
  6. Cut the nose, about a fingers length, a long triangle shape with nostrils. The bottom of the nose meets halfway between eyes and chin OR
  7. Cut a shadow of the nose – a hint of the bottom of the nose with 2 nostrils. Place half way between eyes and chin
  8. Cut eyelids for above the eyes and for under the eyes – can be as thick or thin as you choose. Should be width of eyes
  9. Cut the lips. Can cut as one, or separate. The top of the lip has 2 gentle mountains, the bottom a gentle curve. The bottom of the lips meets a line halfway between nose and chin
  10. Cut eyebrows; they line up with corners of eyes and edges of nose
  11. Cut the ears – align top with center line (eyes) and bottom with bottom of nose
  12. Cut and fill in the iris and pupils
  13. Cut and add the hair – be creative – spikes, pony tail, bangs, braids
  14. Fill in and adjust rest of details, – cheeks, hair barrettes, ribbons, glasses, hats, earrings – have fun – use your tweezers to reposition and then glue down when satisfied

Part Two:

Thank you for taking the “Make a Face” challenge at our meeting.  We hope you had as much fun as we did! We were very impressed with the wide range of interesting personalities that emerged in just a very short amount of time.

And now, the next step – Part 2 of the Challenge is to finish it up. You can make a small wall quilt, maybe a tote bag or how about a pillow? That is up to you.

  • You have until the December meeting to complete this. As you finish your projects please share at meetings and on Instagram, you need not wait.
  • Looking for ideas on how to finish? The improv face is not a new idea – a quick Google search (improv fabric face for instance) will show you that and ideas as to how you might quilt/finish.
  • We will exhibit the projects at our December Holiday Party and each participant will receive a small gift. There will also be a random drawing for a gift card to a local quilt shop.

Any questions – contact Claire


  1. Make a face challenge,

    I have joined and wondering when this is taking place? Is it at Pyle after meeting or in lieu of meeting?
    Sonja Brunswick Winter.

    • Hi Sonja – this will be the main program at the In-Person meeting this Saturday (3/12) at Pyle Center.

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