Friday, 23 November 2012

What is modern?

When I saw the Modern Quilt Guild  was having a quilt show, I decided to come out of my comfort zone and enter a 'modern quilt.'

Sometimes I'm not even sure what modern means and I get it confused with contemporary and lots of other words that get bandied around when it comes to quilting.

So I've just made a quilt that I think is modern, with things that I love: lots of text fabric and a tonne of colour.



I even blocked the quilt which has made a huge difference to the way it hangs. There are several different methods out there. I chose to wash the whole quilt and lightly spin it. Then I lay it out flat on a carpeted spare room, measured it square, then pinned it into the carpet and left it there for 48 hours by which time it was square, flat and dry.


...although it doesn't really show nestled on a row of strawberry plants...


And I quilted the living daylights out of it.



But now I'm wobbling.

(Bit like the quilting really)



Because it's not perfect.




Some of the Drunkard's Path corner blocks don't match up perfectly and the quilting is more utilitarian than award-winning.

And I don't want it to be dissected by Those Who Wear White Gloves.


And I suppose the final nail in the coffin is I wouldn't have a clue what category to enter it into: Minimalist Design, Use of Negative Space, Modern Traditionalism - I have no idea.

So I'm thinking this is my test run for this year and maybe next year I'll have a proper go at being modern.

Linking up to Finish It Up Friday

44 comments:

  1. Well I think it is freaking amazing. No one's quilts are perfect in their own eyes so let us be the judge. You did such a fabulous job, the fabric choices are impeccable and the finish with that quilting is just right for the quilt you made. So there! ;-)

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  2. it's gorgeous! You should *definitely* enter it!!!!

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  3. that is really wonderful....very inspiring

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  4. This is a gorgeous gorgeous quilt. My non white glove wearing hands would like to reach through the screen and scoop it right up. I agree that choosing a category to enter it in won't be easy, but I don't think that, or the imperfections only you can see, should stop you. Go for it!

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  5. it is really cute and unique, were you thinking of Lancaster show?

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  6. Fantastic use of the text fabrics for the background. I love your modern quilt!

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  7. Wow -it is very cool!! Whether it is contemporary or modern it is definitely AWESOME!!

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  8. Ok, so I am having the same debate about a quilt or two to enter. I just adore this one, it is wonderful in every way. How about we both enter and just give it a try.

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  9. Every single internet discussion I read about modern quilting eventually says something disparaging about "white glove ladies", so I will bet you a million dollars that there will be no such ladies at the modern quilt guild show! It is freaking awesome so have no concerns on the perfection account! I agree the hardest thing is finding the right category for it - I am not sure at all where the boundaries are. But don't let it stop you: enter it!

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  10. I think it is a wonderful quilt. I know what you mean about snooty judges, but I think it would be great to give those who go to the show the chance to see your quilt, regardless! After all, you love it, and we all do too!

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  11. It's superb! I definitely think you should enter and it could go in any of the categories you mentioned so if it were me I'd enter it in the category that I thought would have the fewest entries ;o)

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  12. I for one *love* imperfection in quilts. The ones with the consistently perfect points and eerily even quilting stitches can feel a bit...lifeless.

    But to the point: I definitely think you should enter this - but should also measure your love for this and all your other beautiful quilts by standards quite independent of those (mysterious ones) used by quilt show judges. Your work is fabulous!!

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  13. I guess you never know unless you do it. This is a wonderful display of fabrics and design. Go for it ; )
    P.s. did you count how many pieces there are ?

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  14. Yes enter! Allow more people to see this beauty! Read through the categories (and definitions if any) one last time and immediately choose what YOU think closest matches YOUR quilt. Mostly, have fun!

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  15. Ok, I'm going to weigh in on this...You raise so many valid points. #1 being how absolutely unsure and insecure we all are with our art, our quilts, our ideas. You get an idea and run with it, and you think "I've nailed this" - and then... as soon as you think about putting it up to be JUDGED, all your self confidence melts away, and you start looking at the negatives. We all do it! And as the creator, we see all the things that are wrong, or that we could have done differently. But we have to learn to quit doing this to ourselves!! We are not machines. Thank God!!! We are human, we come with imperfections! And as artists, we are looking to create things that are beautiful in our eyes and others - not engineers that are trying to perfect a mechanical design that needs every wheel and spring to work perfectly!! It's ART. And sometimes it's those "mistakes" that take and turn a design into something even we didn't see - something better! Right? You've had those late nights where you make a mistake and in the morning you go - oohhh nooo... and that turns into... ooohhh, that's kind of cool actually! LOL And you take it in a different direction. IT'S ART!
    If you look at some of the amazing designs that have been shown in the modern quilting arena, you can see just that! You can see where they changed their minds and threw caution to the wind and just went for it! - And ya know what? THOSE are the ones that make MY heart sing!!! The ones that against all odds, just work!!
    So... all that being said - this is one of those pieces that stole my breath away! Your use of light value/text fabrics in the background keep your eye moving, but the colored portion (which i think is absolutely genius!) takes center stage and makes an impact! Your quilting choices perfectly enhance the design, not detract from it! This quilt makes a statement!! And it's your design, and use of color and line that really make it work! THAT is what should be judged - NOT whether or not you have a seam that didn't quite make the cut! And, I believe that is what makes the modern quilting "movement" different from traditional quilt quilds and such. They are based on patterns, and whether you have a perfect 1/4" seam, and how well you nailed that pattern. Production, not artistic. (maybe that's why traditional quilting has never really appealed to me? lol)
    Quit second guessing yourself!!! You have created an absolutely beautiful piece of artwork, that SHOULD be shared with others - and who gives a rats ass about whether or not it wins a ribbon?!? LOL (although I think you may be very pleasantly surprised on the outcome!!) WE can see it for what it is - amazing!! You still have your creator glasses on and are only seeing where it isn't "perfect". Take em off girl, and step back and try to look at this in a fresh light! YOU DONE GOOD!!!!!!!! :D And you're nuts if you don't enter it!
    And.. since I've already written a novel, i think it falls in the minimalist design, or use of negative space catagory. :) Just BREATH, and DO IT! :D xo

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  16. I think those small imperfect details gives your quilt an absultute charm! I love the design and quilting, it became a very "strong" work to look at. So please give yourself the chance and enter it for the exhibition!

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  17. You're right, it sucks. send it to me and I'll burn it.

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  18. but don't ask for proof of that.

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  19. I am reminded of a quiltcon block that was sent in at the last minute--I knew it was late and the seams didnt' lie flat (oh, the horror) so how could it possibly be chosen and yet, it was. The design was someone else's and the quilter simply elaborated on it. Again, wholly surprising that it was not only allowed but chosen to be in the raffle quilt. So you don't know what Those Who Wear White Gloves are thinking. (Unless, of course, they choose yours. Then they're geniuses out on weekend family pass from the asylum.) ♥All kidding aside, this is a spectacular quilt and definitely (infinitely) worthy of the chance to win. enter it today.♥

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  20. I think it looks bloody splendid whatever you want to call it!

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  21. I completely agree with all the comments! Your quilt is AMAZING!

    If it makes you feel better, I am entering a non-perfect quilt. I figure that even if it doesn't win that people will want to look at lots of different examples of modern quilting and that they won't be able to see my mistakes from behind the ropes. ;) They need to see yours too!

    I would say either minimalist or use of negative space. Because it is a minimalist design, but I also love what you did piecing the background. Tons of interest, but still subdued. I would say it is a toss up.

    ENTER IT!

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  22. What a stunner!
    Every judge would think the same!!

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  23. Oh, come on, enter it! You've got to start somewhere and if the judges put their critique in writing it can only help, right?

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  24. I think it's wonderful and you are being quite hard on yourself. Take the plunge and enter it! You'll be glad you did.

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  25. I think it is fantastic and you should definitely enter it. What have you got to lose?! Better to try and possibly fail (or more likely, not fail) than to not try at all... Just sayin' :)

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  26. We all know it's great - why not give them with the white gloves the chance to think so too?

    Maybe we should all put a quilt in a competition - I'm sure we'd all learn something from the process even if it is only that we don't share the same aesthetic as the white gloved set!

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  27. You must, must, must enter this beautiful work! Take care, Byrd

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  28. I think it looks amazing, I especially like the contrast between the bright colours and muted background. And I think the quilting adds texture to it.

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  29. I absolutely love it and I think you should enter it, because even if Those Who Wear White Gloves don't like it, the rest of us common quilts would fall over themselves with joy

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  30. Hi!! I love it Looks modern to me!!! Love the colors!!! Love all the quilting you did!!!! Enter it!!! It will be a fun adventure!!!!

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  31. Oh, you MUST enter it. It's a fabulous quilt. I don't know anything about "modern" quilting, but the last category makes sense to me -- it's an innovative interpretation of a traditional block. Right?

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  32. Go for it. Don't worry about what a judge thinks as that is just one person's opinion. I never worry about entering a quilt in the judged category. I am usually looking for the judge's thoughts. I take what I want from them and go forward to the next one.

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  33. I'm speechless! This is a work of art. Perfection isn't art. Art is found in the bits in between and this is it. Enter it!!

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  34. If I could make a quilt that stunning, I'd enter it for everything going!!!!

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  35. Modern or not, it's fantastic! I live the contrast of the text print with the bright, warm colors! It would be a winner at my show :)

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  36. Well, your quilt looks awesome!! I recently went to a quilt store here in New Jersey USA and I was told "Modern" was a "style" Of quilting ,NOT progressive thinking !!!! Go figure..In other words I thought modern meant "do whatever you like" with no traditional rules. They said , NO we have rules because it is a STYLE LOL !!! I was corrected!

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  37. I really like all the dense line quilting. I of course am sad when people don't like my art but I try to take any of their notes as encouragement and knowledge for next time. At least half of your quilt is a showcase of your art and creativity and your skill set doesn't have much bearing on that. I've read that in the 1800's people would put a purposeful mistake in it so as not to be too perfect. Your quilt should be seen by lots of people!

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  38. Well I have no idea if it is "modern" or not.

    But I like the colour and the texture blocks and the different shades of the text neutrals.
    Oh and You know the little bits that arnt "perfect" are what makes it. :)
    Gives it some character and dimension.
    Well done. x

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  39. You totally need to enter it. I think perfection is over-rated, and I think the MQG in general agrees with that idea. I have a feeling this is going to be a really different kind of quilt show, and I think you should enter it. It would be a shame not to, because this quilt is truly fabulous :)

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  40. Enter!!! i hope you do! I has color, interest, movement and solid design. It's very on trend yet totally your own.

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  41. that is gorgeous! I am loving your quilts.

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  42. I too am confused by terminology these days. I love this quilt! I think you are a bit harsh on yourself. Your curves looked wonderful in the photos! To answer today question where does inspiration come from... answer: you. I have a bunch of low volume charms squares from a swap that I didn't know what to do with until now! Thank you!

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