Over the last few months I've been doing my best to keep you posted on my ongoing project to understand what Modern Quilting really is. If you haven't been paying attention, so far we've established that Modern Quilters tend to be younger than non-modern quilters, that they want to Break The Rules, that they love gray and white among their colors, and that they like to depict their quilts artfully draped over furniture or shrubbery rather than photographed boringly head-on against a neutral background.
This week I was happy to read that several Modern Quilting gurus have shared with us their ideas of exciting color combinations.
We all know that colors go in and out of fashion, just as patterns do. A year or two ago I was crushed to discover that it's very difficult to buy striped fabric -- just when I had realized that stripes worked marvelously with my newly developed style of piecing. I made a huge quilt that exhausted most of my stripe stash, and went out to buy more for a second quilt in warm colors, but oops, no stripes. Plenty of polka dots, though.
Most fiber artists that I know don't spend much time in the quilt shop, however, making most of their own fabrics with various surface design techniques, whether dyeing, painting, screenprinting, discharging or whatever. So maybe you will be as curious about what's hot these days as I was.
In a nutshell: gray and gray/beige, orange, mustard yellow, pink, warm dark red, grayed teal.
Should fiber artists spend even a millisecond thinking about this?
Maybe not. But then again, I was present in a room once when a Famous Artist was judging quilts in a juried show, and after some consideration, passed by a quilt that I thought was quite striking. Why? "Because the color palette is so old-fashioned, it just doesn't look fresh." And if you, like me, are toying with the idea of doing an article or book or pattern or workshop that might appeal to quilters who do frequent quilt shops, perhaps you would like to think that your samples look fresh rather than old-fashioned.
A few months ago you, my friends, pitched in and helped me win a contest in which I wrote about what I thought Modern Quilting meant. My prize included a nice little pile of fabrics that, sure enough, fit in nicely with this new color vibe. In furtherance of my own commercial development plan, which I'm not yet ready to go public with, I'm going to use some of these new trendy colors to make a quilt! And since my stash dates back decades, I can probably go into my drawers and find a lot of fabrics that are just as trendy to go with these new ones, saved from the last time orange and gray went around. When was that -- the 60s? the 70s? the 80s? I can't remember.