Looking Back … as We Look Forward … and a GIVEAWAY!


It’s hard to believe that Modern Quilts Unlimited has passed the 4 year mark and is headed for the 5th year already. Wow! We have come a long way … and we want to thank Jacquie Gering (www.jacquiegering.com), Angela Walters (www.quiltingismytherapy.com), Diane Rusin Doran (www.dianedoran.com) and many others who helped us get this magazine off to such a great start. We have endured start-up issues, stiff competition, industry wobbles, closing of iconic publications and other issues typical for magazine publishing, and we’ve come out stronger than ever! This is thanks to you, our loyal readers and followers as well. So as we look forward to our New Look starting with Issue #17, we want to take time to also look back to the Premier issue (Fall 2012).

cover-fall-2012 modern-quilts-16-11-fall-cover

What we said then : Our Editor’s Letter introduced our thoughts on Modern Quilting … “Ever since we announced this new adventure, I have been asked “What is Modern Quilting?” There are many answers to this question. Modern quilting is a fresh approach reflecting each quilter’s personality and personal style. Modern quilters embrace functionality, simplicity and minimalism, and use asymmetric designs in their approach. They reinterpret traditional blocks and patterns, and are often inspired by modern art and architecture. Bold colors, graphic prints and simple quilt lines are favored, as well as solids. White and gray are used extensively as background and as neutrals. Modern quilters are diverse—young and more experienced, men and women, expert and novice. Rules are resisted, and traditional techniques are evolved. The use of internet and technology is integral. Sharing the aesthetics expressed by the early pioneers of quilting and bringing a modern perspective truly defines the movement.”

And now … pretty much the same thoughts. Fabric designs have evolved; colors come and go as favorites; batiks, wools and other specialty fabrics are making inroads; but the aesthetic is the same. Innovation, reinterpretation, simplicity, functionality continue to dominate the patterns and designs.

We want to know YOUR thoughts … how do you define Modern Quilting today? Leave a comment below and you could win a Fat Quarter Pack from our studio stash! Drawing will be held Friday morning, Oct 14 and announced here and on Facebook. Remember – to be eligible to win, your comments must be posted on the blog, not Facebook.

EDIT: We have a Winner in our Fat Quarter Pack drawing! Thank you all for the comments as we move forward with our New Look … Debbie Sipp – your name was drawn this morning! Look for the fabric in the mail very soon …


And as an additional thank you, we are including a free pattern for you from that Premier issue … Borderline Placemats by Diane Rusin Doran.



35 Responses to Looking Back … as We Look Forward … and a GIVEAWAY!

  1. When I think of Modern Quilting, I think of traditional with bright, bold colors, lots of negative space and graphic prints. The quilting is “fresh”, simple straight lines-very organic!

  2. Hi
    Defining modern quilting seems to be a real conversation starter…basically anything that isn’t a traditional quilt could be a modern quilt. I like wide open spaces for some interesting quilting and an emphasis on an uncluttered design elements but that’s just me!

  3. Coming from a 20+ year “traditional” quilting background, Modern Quilting to me is any time I can coax myself out of that box and feel that my quilt has a fresh look that appeals to my updated tastes.

  4. Modern Quilting to me is opposite of traditional, more negative space, (less piecing, more clean, crisp, etc). Just looks different, modern!

  5. Modern quilting means out of the box and random, it can be whatever I want it to be. Thanks for the giveaway.

  6. I fell head over heels for Modern Quilting (and this magazine). I love how solids and tone on tone are used with texture. The negative space makes quilts look cleaner with more places the eyes can rest to take in the art of modern quilting. I think you ‘see’ the quilt as a whole better and not just repeating patterns. I believe you can appreciate the ‘cleanliness’ of the actual quilting with use of more straightline quilting and other techniques. It has captured my heart.

  7. Rochester Modern Quilt Guild recently opened up the year with a discussion on “What is Modern?”. We concluded, it should include two of the following: Use of Negative Space, No Borders, Minimal, Bright Graphic Color Palette, Improvisational Piecing, Grid Work, Asymmetry, Modern Traditionalism, Exaggerated Scale, Texture, Less is More.
    Monthly Challenges will be to take a more Traditional Block and make it modern. Can’t wait to see what the membership thinks up! Your magazine inspires me to think outside the box. Thank you.

  8. Modern quilting is not using traditional block style of busy repetition but taking a more simple organic approach thus resting the eye.

  9. Modern quilting is extension of one’s inner voice: bold, brazen, subdued, optimistic, sorrowful, controlled, or uninhibited. I see less repetition leading to more artful, soulful, and intuitive expression. Rock on, modern quilters, rock on

  10. I own that premier issue and I do look back at it, I was hooked from the start. Thanks for a great read, I have used it as inspiration for many quilts. I would describe the MQ movement in a single word UNFETTERED.

  11. You’ve pretty much covered the “definition” above, if we really need to pigeonhole the quilts we make into styles or categories. I tend to think quilts are a modern style if they are fresh, have unusual block settings, possibly enlarged scale, quite a bit of negative space, little use of borders (or blended borders that match the background).

  12. Modern quilting means not being confined by the prescriptions of traditional patterns. It makes room for improvisations and new designs.

  13. Modern quilting is a departure from traditional patterns and fabrics. No more perfect symmetry , but that doesn’t mean they don’t have balance! This gives much more room for new designs and freestyle quilting!

  14. I think Modern quilts tend to be very colorful and have more negative space. Often they have less symmetry and the quilting has simple lines that go edge to edge.

  15. Modern Quilting is the all things old are new again quilting. I suppose it is the less definition with wide open spaces but isn’t that Bees Gees Quilts and they aren’t Modern? I’d say more color but I see alot of B&W, more geometric maybe or maybe just free range.

  16. Modern quilting uses lots of open space (often white) with bright colors generally and unusual combinations and/or designs. It is definitely a “I’ll do it my way” type of quilting.

  17. Modern Quilting, for me, includes updated traditional, improvisational, and contemporary with a fair or large amount of solids. I love the ability to get out of the box. Thanks for having a giveaway. Good luck to all.

  18. I define modern as lots of negative space, asymmetrical and using solids of bright fabrics. It’s a different way to look at the traditional blocks. So much inspiration and lots of discussion on this topic! Love the placemats!

  19. Congrats on four years, looking forward to MQU’s journey and the future of modern quilting! To me, modern quilting is being mindful of the past and embracing new interpretations of classic designs through the fabrics and quilting.

  20. This is certainly an involved question, as even those in the forefront have varied perspectives. Also, not every modern quilt contains all aspect of the aesthetic. Some indicators I would say include: original, abstract design; use of modern fabrics; non-standard-grid; negative space; no borders; and high contrast.

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