A Modern Take on Traditional

I have been hooked on Crystal’s terrific blog Modify Tradition – a quilting blog dedicated to modern quilting. She is challenging other quilters to turn tradition on its head with their quilting (you can see examples of this on Crystals Flickr group for this challenge).

In about two weeks I am taking a class to learn how to do free motion quilting (A “no-marking” approach to machine-stitched, freeform quilting designs) and we have been asked to bring a completed block to the class…specifically an Ohio Star block. So I decided to put a modern spin on this very traditional quilt block. Here is what I came up with:


*click on image to enlarge

I added a border because I decided I am going to make a pillow from this block…it will go perfectly on my porch.  And then because I really fell in love with how these bold fabrics came together, I decided to make a second block with the same fabric combination – this time a “traditional” nine-patch with a modern spin:


*click on image to enlarge

What do you think? Won’t these look cute sitting on my porch swing? I think so!

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    • Kailana on November 7, 2009 at 11:06

    I think they will look great on your porch swing! Quilting is about the only crafty thing I am any good at, but I haven’t done anything with it in years!

    • Verbatim on November 7, 2009 at 11:19

    I’d love to hear how the free-motion quilting class goes. I just spent several days experimenting with my relatively cheap machine, and I just don’t think it’s possible for me. Well, I *think* it’s the machine, and not me, but one never knows . . .

    • paula on November 7, 2009 at 12:59

    Wow Wendy, these blocks are terrific – especially the Ohio Star – you have become quite an accomplished quilter!

    • EL Fay on November 7, 2009 at 15:07

    They’re very retro-looking. Normally I’m not crazy about ’70s colors and patterns, but these look really nice! I think it’s the traditional aspect.

    • Staci on November 7, 2009 at 18:42

    I absolutely love the patterns you choose and the color combos are refreshing!! Love it!!

    • Tammy on November 7, 2009 at 18:48

    I love your blocks, they will look great as pillows on your porch swing. Enjoy your class. I learned to free motion from books and it worked fine, but when I finally took a class it made all the difference!

    • Wendy on November 9, 2009 at 08:22

    Kailana: Thanks! It is so much fun!

    Verbatim: Funny you should mention trying to quilt on your machine. I initially bought a relatively cheap machine…but when I started trying to quilt larger lap quilts, I had a problem with the machine not being able to handle it. It was very discouraging. I recently went back to the store and “traded up” to a more professional machine…and wow…what a difference! I think if you are serious about quilting, you probably need to have a decent, more powerful machine to do the job. I am really looking forward to learning free motion quilting.

    Paula: thank you, dear sister 🙂 That was a fun block to make.

    El Fay: I am really liking the retro colors lately…and like you, I wasn’t always fond of that look. But pairing them with traditional patterns I think makes a difference.

    Staci: Thank you!

    Tammy: Thanks! I learn best with hands on teaching…so I like taking classes. I think it is sometimes hard to learn something like quilting just from a book.

  1. I love quilting and the way you can take fabric and move from traditional to modern in just a few seams. Looks great.

    • Wendy on November 20, 2009 at 08:37

    Beth: I totally agree!!! I love the creating/designing part of the process…choosing the fabrics and placement is so satisfying! Thanks for stopping by 🙂

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