Geometric and Directional Fabric No-No

All the quilting rage these days is to use geometric and directional fabric designs – now known as part of the modern quilt movement.  Mind you, there have been directional and geometric fabrics around for a long time, it’s just that a lot of the modern quilts are made with geometric and directional fabrics.  Sometimes though, this is not the best course of action for a beginning quilter.  A beginner can be as modern as they want…until they can’t.

When is that a problem?  Take a look at this quilt block:


With the right fabrics (right being deemed by the modern quilt movement’s establishment) and colors, a simple log cabin quilt can become a thing of modern beauty.  Now take a closer look at the plaid red and white fabric strips.

I had been quilting for about 25 years when I made this quilt block.  And I made this “beginning quilter’s” mistake.  The lines on the fabric are not straight.

I can call this whatever I want – the fabric wasn’t printed straight on the grain, the fabric shifted when I cut it out, it’s handmade and looks handmade, etc. etc.  I can call it whatever I want to, but the truth is that I would never recommend this type geometric/directional fabric to a beginning quilter.  If a person who has been quilting for as long as I’ve been quilting cannot cut a straight line in the fabric, how can I expect a beginning quilter to do so?

Please remain calm.  This is not a post on bashing modern quilts.  It’s not a post on bashing fabric manufacturers.  This is a post outlining why I choose not to design quilts with geometric and/or directional fabrics – I design quilts for beginners and above!

If you are a beginning quilter and wish to make modern quilts, stick with a pleasing color palate without the geometric and dimensional fabrics.  You can grow into them as your quilting advances.  Or if you use those fabrics mentioned and your lines do not come out straight – go ahead and call your quilt a handmade modern quilt.

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