2016 Row from Crimson Tate, Indianapolis, Indiana

QuiltCon 2017 just wrapped up in Savannah, Georgia this past week.  Many of you saw the stunning Best in Show winner “Bling” as it popped up all over Facebook.

QuiltCon is an international quilt conference presented by the Modern Quilt Guild.  It’s a large juried show with vendors and workshops hosted by top modern quilters from around the world.

One of our 2016 Home Sweet Home rows was designed by Cassandra Beaver, a winner at this year’s QuiltCon.  Cassandra created “Columbus Skyline” for Dabble & Stitch in Columbus, Ohio.

“Columbus Skyline” Dabble & Stitch Columbus, Ohio. www.dabbleandstitch.com

Actual photograph Cassandra used to create the row’s design.

Back view of Columbus Skyline

See the process she used to create the row in her blog post here.

Cassandra took first prize in the Use of Negative Space category at QuiltCon 2017 with her quilt “Infused Plaid.”

“Infused Plaid by Cassandra Beaver
QuiltCon 2017 1st place Use of Negative Space
“A simply pieced central design creates the basis for this quilt which allows the quilting to become the star of the show. Linear matchstick quilting is done using the same color of thread as the fabric it passes through. This process extends the colors of the piecing across the surface of the quilt and develops a plaid pattern in the process.”

Use of Negative Space?  What does that mean?  And what is a modern quilt after all?

The Row by Row Mod Squad has some answers for you.

Modern quilting is a movement that began in the early 2000’s.  It takes inspiration from life all around us.

Quilt making is a form of decorative art and, in all art forms, change takes place over time.

Let’s look at other art movements in history.

Art Nouveau followed the Victorian period in the late 1800’s.

Art Deco arrived in the late 1910’s.  Mid Century took over before WWII.

The Mid Century style has considerable influence on today’s modern quilter.  Read more about Mid Century Modern here and here.

Weeks Ringle and Bill Kerr write in their book The Modern Quilt Workshop (Quarry Books, 2005):
“Modern quilting has its roots in our desire to do something different.  But our feet are still firmly planted in the field of tradition.  Modern quilting is our response to what has come before.”
“Although we appreciate and admire the quilts of the nineteenth century, our primary interest is in making quilts that are expressive of the time and culture in which we live.  We want to contribute new designs and innovative techniques to the quilt world.  We want to champion excellent craftsmanship and thoughtful design.”

Stash Walla Walla, Washington http://www.myfabricstash.com/

As the Modern Quilt movement continues, a unique aesthetic has emerged.

It’s a collection of principles that define and guide the movement.

These principles set modern quilts apart from traditional and art quilts.

The Row by Row Mod Squad, chosen from dozens of modern-inspired 2016 Home Sweet Home rows, illustrates seven of these principles.

1.  Use of white and gray as neutrals.

Piece by Piece Eugene, Oregon http://www.piecebypiecefabrics.com/row-by-row.htm

2.  Use of increased negative space.  Ahhh…negative space.  The space around or between the subjects of an image.  The breathing room around a subject.  The background.

Crafthouse Lincoln, Nebraska http://www.crafthouselincoln.com/

3.  Use of asymmetry.

Inspirations Hills, Iowa (319) 679-2207

4.  Use of minimalism and simplicity without embellishment.

Fidddlehead Artisan Supply Belfast, Maine https://www.fiddleheadartisansupply.com/shop/

5.  Focus on quilting and surface design.

Harts Fabric Santa Cruz, California http://www.hartsfabric.com/

Crinklelove Springfield, Missouri http://www.crinklelove.com/

6.  Use of reinterpreted traditional blocks, improvisational piecing and a lack of visible block structure with few borders.

Ruby Street Quiltworks Tumwater, Washington https://www.rubystreetquiltworks.com/

Thimbles & Things Orillia, Ontario http://thimblesandthings.com/

7.  Use of solid fabrics, graphic shapes, and on trend color combinations.

Owl & Drum Tulso, Oklahoma https://www.owl-drum.myshopify.com/

Urban Spools Dallas, Texas http://www.urbanspools.com/

Alamosa Quilt Co. Alamosa, Colorado http://www.alamosaquiltcompany.com/

The Quilted Cardinal Beamsville, Ontario http://www.thequiltedcardinal.ca/

Here are a few more 2016 rows with a fun, modern look.  Can you identify the modern quilt principles at work?

The Shop on Canal Street Bolivar, Ohio http://www.shoponcanal.com/

Apron Strings Quilt Shop Maysville, Kentucky http://www.apronstringsquiltshop.com/

Thimbles Lockport, Illinois https://www.thimblesquilts.com/

Congratulations to these 2016 winning quilts with a modern quilting feel.

Alice Dutton at the Quilt Asylum in McKinney, Texas http://www.thequiltasylum.com/

Jaycie Self at The Quiltmakers in American Fork, Utah http://www.thequiltmakers.com/

Tammy German at Heartfelt Hobby and Craft in Sandy, Utah http://www.heartfeltpages.com/

Quilt making allows us to express ourselves in so many ways.

Modern quilting is just one of them.

Always seek joy in whatever you do!

Happy rowing ahead from the Row by Row Mod Squad.

Coming this summer!  

Row by Row Junior for kids ages 6-14.

To read more about it, click here.