Class samples

The sample for Night Village is up at the shop and I’m ready to make a second sample for Improv Quilting With a Modern Slant.

Designing Summer 3

I actually started this one with scraps for my Curvy Improv class and liked it so much that now I want to make it into a full size quilt. And I think I have enough scraps for that, even though it’s a two color quilt, red and ecru.

As always, I just start making pieces and throwing them up on the design wall, without doing any arranging. I’ve got quite a few done already and I’ve started to think about my 40% theory on modern quilts…I’ll explain that in a minute.

Mod sample 1

I try to have a combination of super quick stack/slash/switch blocks and more complicated blocks. The stacked ones can fill a design wall in a very short time, but don’t give you enough variety.

Mod sample 3

The more complicated looking ones are not necesarily harder to do. They just take longer.

Mod sample 2

And either way, you need a lot of blocks for a full size quilt.

Now, about that 40% theory. Modern quilts have a huge following right now but many ‘moderns’ have a hard time with a definition of what’s different about modern from the traditional. Okay-usually more graphic, more solid colors, alternative grids. But there are a lot of modern quilts out there using traditional block designs, too.

In an effort to simplify things in my own mind, I just think anything that has more than 40% background is a modern quilt. Maybe a bit too simplistic, but it works for me.

This sample is much closer to 50/50 right now. It needs more background ecru, so as it continues to grow and as I assemble it, I know that I have to keep adding background, NOT more red. It’s tempting to use up all those red scraps, just because I have them, but I have to keep the end goal in mind here. I’m trying to illustrate improv with a modern slant, not just my usual crazy improv!

Let’s just see if I can get there…



8 thoughts on “Class samples

  1. I spent time at AQS in the modern quilt display trying to figure out what makes a quilt modern and discussing it with my companions. There didn’t really seem to be much of a commonality in the quilts. Many had a lot of background, but some had minimal amounts of background. I found it interesting to see their display.


    • There are some principles that the Modern quilt movement tries to adhere to–negative space is what most people know about. Alternate grid, engaging the edge, heavy use of solids, simple/minimal/stark…lots of considerations, including traditional quilts that fit into that aesthetic. It’s also about the community of modern quilters and how they connect. It truly is a movement and it engages my interest as much as traditional quilting, contemporary quilting, art quilting and the slow stitching movement. I love all aspects of working with fiber, but I also like to study the elements involved in each aspect. I guess it’s just my passion!

      On Sun, Aug 24, 2014 at 9:41 AM, Quirks Ltd. wrote:



    • Thanks, Angie. I’m trying to develop a modern quilt aesthetic and studying up on all those modern elements!

      On Sat, Aug 23, 2014 at 9:03 PM, Quirks Ltd. wrote:



  2. I like to work the way you do, by putting things on the design wall, arranging and rearranging and watching it grow. You’re off to a good start.


  3. Your best post EVER. Thank you for this observation in percentages. I knew this but had no simplified way to explain it in a class. You have just given me the formula. Also, I can make samples with a 50% background and 60% background for comparison.


    • I have tried very hard to figure out why modern quilts are so attractive and that’s the best I can come up with! It works for me!

      On Tue, Aug 19, 2014 at 8:20 AM, Quirks Ltd. wrote:



Comments are closed.