If you have visited here before you know that I am rather partial to modern quilts, so of course my review of Festival of Quilts 2019 had to be about the Modern category didn’t it?  In fact it really did because it was one of only 2 sections that I actually managed to see whilst at the show!

Jardin a Manhattan by Sheila Frampton-Cooper

Modern Movement by Rachelle Denneny

There were 101 entries into this category and whilst I would love to share them all this post will feature those that caught my eye the most.

Blikfang by Anne Lillholm Jorgenson

Hot Medittaranian by Greta Fitchett

There really was a great variety of quilts in this category and through subsequent chatter on social media I have heard that several people who entered Modern were advised in the Judge’s Comments that it would have fitted better into Contemporary.

Three Sprouts by Olga Krylova

Flight Factory by Esperanza Blanco Ruiz

It really is a contentious issue this defining quilts, but I think the difference between Modern and Contemporary is more hotly disputed than most.

Le Sentier by Sophie Zaugg

Wonky Log Cabins by Jessamie Self

But do you know what I think?  Unless you are only entering to win it doesn’t really matter what other people think.  Make what you love, make it to the best of your ability and enter it into the category you think it fits best.  Because remember – it is YOUR QUILT!!

Triangle Colour Study III by Nicholas Ball

Twelve by Nataliia Davydenko

If you want lots of negative space in your quilt then go for it …… it means there’s lots of opportunities for quilting.

Geo by Bev Mayo

The Orphan’s Got the Blues by Carol Harrison

If you want a maximalist modern quilt well then you just make it and fill it with as much colour and pattern as you can.

Surf Sea Trinket Quilt by Gill Roberts

Or conversely if your aesthetic is minimalist – well that’s just fine too!

Window to the Waves by Jo Westfoot

Negative Space? by Helen Butcher

On the quilt above, I didn’t realise it’s message until I saw it through my camera lens!

Or maybe you are more a Modern Traditionalist ….

NY Squared by Mary Palmer

Whatever your making style I would highly urge you to have a go entering a quilt into a show.  It doesn’t have to be Festival of Quilts because there are lots of smaller shows around the country.  It really does engage you with the show more and it really is very exciting to see your work hanging up their amongst its peers.

So here I am urging people to enter and the more eagle eyed amongst you will see that there is not a quilt above that is credited to me.  There should have been.  It was entered.  But sadly, due to unforeseen family circumstances and an injured elbow, it wasn’t going to be finished by the date of delivery and so I had to withdraw it.  Oh well looking on the bright side I have a great head start for my entry into Modern next year!


  1. Maggie Attfield

    What beautifully photographed, annotated and attributed quilts! Thank you for that. You do raise a very valid point about definitions. Perhaps next year, the judges will clearly delineate guidelines for both Contemporary and Modern quilts to ensure quilters submit to the best category.