Monday, August 22, 2016

tip #37--go negative

I have to be careful with this post. No pictures are included.
We usually look at quilts and think, "I like that. That one too."
Take a bit of time to "go negative".
What is it about the quilt that you don't like.
This is TOTALLY subjective.
It doesn't mean it is a bad quilt, it just means I would make different choices in making it.
This helps me define my own style.

A quick look at quilts with this mindset shows my aesthetic is irritated by:
-scale that is just a bit too big
-strong checkerboard effects in scrap quilts (hard to define this one, but I know it when I see it--when there is too much planning in layout, no seridipity of things falling where they may)
-primary colors
-30's repro quilts with no brown or black in them
-too much repetition of value
-use of one fabric line in a quilt
-odd proportions--table runners irritate me!
-quilts that are "girl" or "boy'--I was more of a unisex dressing mother
-bed quilts to the floor

THEN, after going negative, let it go and appreciate the work of the quilter.
But, know and own your own style!


Scrap and quilts said...

Great post. Lots of food for thoughts in here. I love polka-dots fabric but don't like quilts with too many dots or tiny flowers fabrics. They look, to me, like they have chicken pocks! Although I have made one for my In-Laws, (because that's what they like), I don't like quilts that have one block repeated 20-25 times made all the same. So boring. Nothing to retain the eye's attention. Anywho! That's my spaghetti for today! Now that the ugly is out, let's appreciate what we love most about quilts. ;^)

mereth said...

Hmm, this is harder than I thought. I hate log cabin quilts where the blocks are made of fabrics all sewn in the same order and you get a heavy line where they meet up. I hate patterns that have four squares of the same fabric sewn together to make a larger square. Just cut the larger square in the first place. I hate over the top quilting, so that the quilt is as stiff as a board. I don't like portrait quilts unless they are Really well done(so many are less than flattering) and I don't like Sunbonnet Sues AT All. Nor do I like row by rows...this is getting easier...and halloween quilts and.....

Cynthia@wabi-sabi-quilts said...

I really like this post - it's a good exercise and one way to help define an individual aesthetic... I so agree about the "one line!" I tend to like either real scrappy, or striking two-color, but I am bored by the old "focus fabric with matchy matchy coordinates" look. Also, why does so much long arming look like "scribbling over the quilt" to me...

audrey said...

What a great post! I make a list every year of those quilty elements I want to see in my own quilts. Never really thought about going 'negative' and working from that direction!

Anita Wolff said...

I agree this is a good exercise for defining my own approach. I agree that too-large scale can be off-putting, looks cheap. I'm not too crazy about lots of diamonds forming a big starburst, whether in pastels or [cringe] earth tones. Photo-realist flower prints. Insufficient border element, although I do like allover scrap quilts with just a binding.
But I think primary colors can work just fine. I'd like to learn some once-common techniques like setting in squares.