Modern Quilts - A Guide to Collecting Modern Bedding

The Joy of Collecting Quilts

When it comes to collecting quilts, I would imagine that most people think of collecting antique or vintage quilts as they would be an investment or for the charm. Modern quilts are overlooked. They, too, could be an investment for the future since quilt making is an art in its own right.

Modern quilts and vintage modern quilts do hold a lot of charm. They make use of modern fabrics and designs and can be abstract quilted bedspreads to whimsical and charming baby quilts. Stories are told by the quilter in the fabric that they use. Stitches are crafted and a unique story line appears. The fabric choice alone can be a heartwarming quilting adventure. Silk; soft, flowing and adventurous like a river. Corduroy; tough and determined like an organic farmer. Or cotton; plain and simple yet enduring like your grandmother. Turn that quilt over and view the back side stitching. There might be a visible trade mark used by the artist. This is another way to complete a quilt's story.

What makes a modern quilt valuable? Sometimes it is the pattern other times the fabric. Often it can be the artist. Finished crazy quilts with a date can be valuable. Look for a date or marking on the reverse side. Marie Webster patterns are prized because there are only a few of them. Another quilting artist who is sought after is a quilt maker named Ann Orr from Nashville, Tennessee. Kit quilts are hot and so are quilts from the 1960s and 1970s.

What about current quilts? Ever heard of Quilt Con? It exists and solicits quilts from modern artists to be used at the convention. Visit them at Quiltcon.com. Current modern quilt bedspreads take on traditional crafting methods while incorporating modern views and current designs while allowing the artist to show their own personalities through the quilt.

Modern Women Exhibition
Modern Women Exhibition | Source
QR  Code Quilt
QR Code Quilt | Source

More on Modern Quilts

It is interesting to note that while modern quilting methods focus on rebellion and non-traditional methods, a modern quilter cannot make a quilt without knowledge of traditional methods. Tradition is respected but the need for individualism is sought after. Modern quilters can pick and choose traditional techniques that will work in their modern quilting efforts while attempting to reinvent techniques and structure. Here are typical modern quilt traits:

  • Make functional rather than decorative quilts
  • Use asymmetry
  • Reinterpret traditional patterns and styles
  • Focus on minimalism
  • Use negative space
  • Aim for lack of visible block structure
  • Take inspiration from modern art and architecture
  • Use improvisational piecing
  • Use bold colors and graphic design elements
  • Use grey and white as neutrals
  • Increase the use of solid fabrics
  • Focus of finishing the quilt on a sewing machine

In many ways,modern quilting has returned to the basics of quilting techniques. Bold colors and plain fabrics are standard. When collecting modern quilts look for the use of modern fabrics or Japanese prints. Bold colors and themes will stand out. Quilting may be done on a grand or large scale and graphic elements ensue. The internet supports a large and growing modern quilting community.

Quilt Rack
Quilt Rack | Source

Display Your Quilts

Besides ebay, one of the best places to find current and modern art quilts for wall hangings or quilted bedding is on Etsy.com. A rare, highly ornate modern quilt for a wall display or bedding is the perfect addition to your home. Quilts can be displayed easily on quilting racks or hung on the walls. If you have a large collection of quilted bedspreads they look fantastic folded and shown in an open hutch unit or on open shelving. Throw quilts over the sofas and chairs for a laid back and fun way to display you quilts.

Denyse Schmidt, Kaffe Fassett, Sarah Fielke, Weeks Ringle & Bill Kerrare very popular modern quilters. Look for their art, books and quilts to add to a modern collection. Use your great taste for bold colors and abstract shapes and you will be on your way to owning a gorgeous collection of modern quilts.

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Comments 4 comments

Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

Great info and pics. I always love quilting hubs and there are not too many of them. Thanks.


cabmgmnt profile image

cabmgmnt 4 years ago from Northfield, MA Author

Thanks Glimmer Twin Fan,

This was a sporadic and spur of the moment hub for me. I wanted to learn more about current quilts and well, here we are. It was lots of fun and I want to buy a truckload of them. Glad you liked it!


jellygator profile image

jellygator 4 years ago from USA

I can't sew a stitch worth a darn, but my best friend and my daughter do quilting and I love seeing what they come up with. Your hub has some beautiful photos. That QR code is such a whimsical idea, too!


cabmgmnt profile image

cabmgmnt 4 years ago from Northfield, MA Author

Thanks jellygator,

I love that QR quilt, too! Great thing about modern quilts is that they can be so bold, graphic and striking. I envy artists who have the patience to do art work like that!

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