Thursday, November 4, 2010

What Modern Quilting Means to Me!

When the Phoenix Branch of the Modern Quilt Guild got together a few weeks ago we briefly discussed what exactly modern quilting was. I was pleased at how most everyone seemed to be very open and flexible in what they considered modern. I consider myself a modern quilter, I only consider a few of my quilts to be modern.
Today I interpreted a class in which they were talking about "modern" and "post modern" architechture. It got me wondering if modern art, modern quilting, modern architechture all refer to the same styles or if we are using modern in different ways. Modern can mean "in recent times" but it can also mean "experimental" and while my quilts are all made in recent times, none of them are real experimental and most of them aren't "modern" as far as I am concerned!
So I read over the definition the modern quilt guild put out on is "a new twist on the traditional art of quilting" they then went on to explain the various ways you can do that including "using modern fabrics, modifying the block arrangement or even the scale of the also reflects the current aesthetic of the day." My favorite part of their definition is "in fact, if there were one rule in modern quilting it would be that there are no rules." I think this openminded approach really is inclusive and allows each of us quilters to piece and quilt what we want, the way we want to. So to me modern quilting is freeing!
To me a modern quilt aesthetically can include lots of solids, or a lot of a solid, sometimes it is white for a clean line other times it might be dark brown or grey for the background fabric. I know for some people they invent the pattern as they go along or purposefully let the pieces look as they look and don't worry about the perfect matching seam. So far I need a pattern and like a pattern! The modern quilts I have made have not had borders, they almost seem simpler or less complicated to look at but that isn't necessarily the case--they are visually interesting anyway. I usually use geometric shapes in my modern quilts, but on a recent one my quilter chose to quilt it with leaves which gave it a more organic feel that really fit.

My two favorite books with modern quilt patterns are "The Modern Quilt Workshop" by Weeks Ringle and Bill Kerr and Denyse Schmidt's book. I have looked through the latter book many times and finally made A Flock of Triangles out of it. Ringle and Kerr have a new book coming out any day now and I can hardly wait to get my hands on it--Quilts Made Modern: 10 Projects, Keys for Success with Color & Design, From the FunQuilts Studio. Do you have a favorite Modern Quilting Book?

Another interesting thing about modern quilts is that I think they often appeal to teenagers and those in their early twenties...more so than the average quilt anyway. Several years ago I asked my daughter to pick a pattern for me to make her and she had a STACK of my magazine and books and in no time at all she narrowed it down to "Outside the Box" and when my psuedo honorary daughter Rachel saw it she wanted one too. They were in their teens at the time. When I asked my son Mac which quilt he wanted he also picked a quilt from the same book--the black and red circle quilt is his. Now understand I have more than one shelf of quilting books and another whole shelf of magazines. This modern style is what all three of these teens wanted on their beds. They are funky or something.

Of course I also love regular quilts and scrappy quilts and anything designed by Bonnie Hunter too. But at heart I am a modern quilts girl!


Anonymous said...

Good read Angela! I think "modern" is what you make it, as it is, right here in the now. Clean and (sometimes) original. Your quilts are beautiful and modern!

Wacky Woman said...

I too love all the modern quilting. I intend to do more of it.

Roslyn said...

Hmmm that's food for thought, Andee, my interpretation of modern is quite broad, & all of your examples fit!

Sue said...

Whatever your quilts are....I love them all...You are an AWESOME quilter!

Zoey said...

Love love your patterns! The grey and red one is especially awesome! =)

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