Ever since attending QuiltCon in February, I’ve been giving some serious thought to modern quilting and what it means to me.
While filling out a recent application to teach a quilting class, I was asked to define how I interpret modern quilting.
This is what I said, “I’m attracted to quilts with bright clear colors, bold geometric designs, and lots of negative space to showcase extensive machine quilting.”
I was very pleased to find that the Modern Quilt Guild has refined their definition of modern quilting to the following statement, taken from their website:
“Modern quilts are primarily functional and inspired by modern design. Modern quilters work in different styles and define modern quilting in different ways, but several characteristics often appear which may help identify a modern quilt. These include, but are not limited to: the use of bold colors and prints, high contrast and graphic areas of solid color, improvisational piecing, minimalism, expansive negative space, and alternate grid work. ‘Modern traditionalism’ or the updating of classic quilt designs is also often seen in modern quilting.”
I love this because coming from a traditional quilting background, I find myself drawn to modern traditional quilts. Probably the thing I love most about modern quilting is seeing all of these quilters taking classic quilting patterns like log cabins, stars and hexagons and interpreting them in new ways.
One of the definitions I heard at QuiltCon was that modern quilting was definitely not “art quilting”, although one could argue that they are very artistically well-done and they certainly are beautiful works of art!
I appreciate the quality workmanship that goes into making a modern quilt and the fact that modern quilters are not afraid of doing handwork or projects that may take a little longer to complete. I recently wrote a blog post about slowing down and enjoying the process and I think that is the epitome of modern quilting.
Many modern quilters will also dive right and and quilt their own quilts, something that thrills me immensely! (Read my soapbox post about quilting your own quilts!)
As one of the lecturers at QuiltCon noted (I forget who), I am a quilter first, a modern quilter second.