Hello again everyone. Happy New Year! It’s been a while! My apologies for failing to update my blog over the past few months. Since my last post, I have been trying to regain my balance a little. Despite making several plans, I have failed to complete any sewing projects since September. I’m hoping that, as things get better, there will be more progress with the sewing.
As ever, I’ve tried to keep up with the world of quilting by reading various blogs and my monthly copy of Love Patchwork and Quilting. I am facing a bit of a dilemma at the moment as, although I enjoy reading LPAQ, there haven’t been many projects in recent copies that I have felt tempted to make. Whilst the projects are always very impressive, they tend to use a lot of block colour (sometimes focussing on just one colour) and they would probably be described as ‘modern’ quilt projects.
I’ve recently been given a couple of copies of a new magazine, Today’s Quilter, (a new-ish publication in the Quilting World that is edited by former LPAQ editor Jenny Fox-Proverbs) and I’ve been considering this option too.
There has been much discussion in the quilting world about what’s known as ‘modern’ quilting. According to the website of the Modern Quilt Guild ‘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 colours and prints, high contrast and graphic areas of solid colour, improvisational piecing, minimalism, expansive negative space, and alternate grid work.’
Some of you will know that I joined the Quilters’ Guild a couple of years’ ago. They are the primary organiser of the Festival of Quilts and they always have a large stand at the festival. I was devastated to discover that The Quilt Museum would close due to a lack of funds so I thought that I could, in a small way, try to help by becoming a member of the Guild. All members receive a copy of the guild’s magazine, The Quilter, every quarter. In the most recent edition I read an interesting article written by Quilter Extraordinaire and All-Round Sewing Wonder Woman, Jo Avery (of My Bearpaw), who explained why she decided to re-join the Quilters’ Guild. There are several references in the article to ‘modern’ and ‘traditional’ quilting. Jo identifies herself as a ‘modern’ quilter. Her quilts are always absolutely beautiful and, although they do contain elements of the ‘modern’ quilt, there is always an aspect of them that can be linked to ‘traditional’ quilting. Perhaps this is why Jo’s projects appear in a range of magazines that cross both spheres.
So where do I stand in all of this? If I am going to make a quilt for our home, a rather lovely Victorian terrace, then I am perhaps more drawn to ‘traditional’ patterns. You will all have noticed that I absolutely love fabric designs that are based on old French patterns. French General is a favourite and I loved the designs of the fabric in the shops that I discovered in Marseille.
So am I a traditional quilter? Hmmm. I personally think that all art (as, indeed, quilting is an art-form) is a product of what has come before. Our quilting predecessors initially made quilts out of necessity. They didn’t have the luxury of brand new fabrics or all of the wonderful tools that makes our craft a little easier. The designs that were created were a product of society and circumstance. Now, perhaps, we have the luxury of choice. But we still use designs and techniques that have been around for centuries. We owe much to our quilting predecessors, even those of perhaps just a generation ago. We have simply reinterpreted the craft for the society and circumstance in which we find ourselves.
I still have much to learn so, for now, I think I will just keep reading and learning. I don’t think that I’ll ever be a designer but I hope that, whatever I create, my friends and family will appreciate my efforts. I think my approach at the moment isn’t so much ‘modern’ or ‘traditional’ but rather ‘hope for the best’ and ‘pray that my lines aren’t too wonky’ 😉
Till next time!