Tuesday, March 17, 2015

How to Make a Modern Quilt

Modern: of, relating to, or characteristic of the present or the immediate past: contemporary. Merriam-Webster Dictionary

Lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making, From Color to Quilting: 10 Workshops by your Favorite Teachers, including 16 Patterns, Complied by Susanne Woods is designed to aid the intermediate quilt maker to learn new skills for their toolbox.

The local quilt shop is home to the local Modern Quilt Guild. I have not done any 'modern' quilting myself. I hand quilt, hand appliqué, and my quilts themes look to the past and not to the present. I am far from 'modern.' I guess I'm archaic! But an old dog can learn new tricks.

I was a relative later comer to quilting, starting in 1991. I have seen a lot of changes: rotary cutting, Batiks and Reproduction fabrics, to machines that cut shapes and websites that print custom designed fabric.

Modern Quilts are hugely different from what has been going on for years. They seem to have little in common with traditional quilts. There is the simplicity, the basic geometric shapes, the sophisticated use of negative space, the dense machine quilting. Solid fabrics and improvisational piecing stand in contrast to the floral prints and high standards of precise piecing. These new quilts are like 1960s art with its lines or geometric shapes of color on a white background. As Mid-Century Modern is all the rage with young people, it seems right that the quilt world responds with minimalist designs.

 The workshops presented in the book include:

  • Principles of Color by Kari Vojtechovsky
  • Working with Solids by Alissa Haight Carlton
  • Working with Prints by Dan Rouse
  • Improvisational Patchwork by Denyse Schmidt
  • The Alternative Grid by Jaquie Gering
  • Circles and Curves by Cheryl Arkison
  • Paper Piecing by Penny Layman
  • Large-Scale Piecing by Heather Jones
  • Modern Quilting by Angela Walters
  • A Study of Modern Quilts by Heather Grant
Many of these workshops will be useful to quilters of any style. For instance, the principles of color has twelve pages full of color illustrations to explain the basis of color theory. A pattern for a 57 1/2 x 57 1/2" quilt includes cutting diagram and visuals for piecing the blocks, assembling, and finishing the quilt.

"Working with Solids" considers solids, cross weaves, and textured fabrics, the importance of value, composition and line, improvisational piecing, use of negative space, featuring prints, straight-line quilting, and a pattern for a 60" x 72" quilt. 

The workshop on machine quilting offers detailed step-by-step illustrations. It made me think that even I could do it! We are told that machine quilting is like driving a car; one must always look ahead of where you are. 

There are a total of 16 patterns included.
The last section is a virtual quilt show of 50 modern quilts, something to inspire every quilter. Several of the quilts or quilters I recognized as recent show winners. 

I was impressed by the book. I thank NetGalley and the publisher for the free ebook in exchange for a fair and unbiased review.

To learn more about Modern Quilting see:
https://themodernquiltguild.wordpress.com
http://quiltconwest.com

lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quiltmaking
The Taunton Press, Inc.
ISBN: 9781940655000
$28.95 paperback