Every day begins with a choice.

Not to be too philosophical, but those are words I truly believe and try to live by. Some choices are easy: get up early and go to the gym or hit the snooze button and benefit from the extra rest? Others really aren’t that straightforward. Each choice we make, no matter how big or small, makes a difference in the outcome of our day.

As quilters who love the modern design aesthetic, we can also apply this philosophy to our work. Every quilt begins with a choice. Large or small? Prints or solids? Improv curves or paper-pieced points? Symmetrical or off-center focal point? Some of the most important design decisions we make when starting a new project make a huge difference to the overall impact of our finished pieces. The truth is, bold design choices lead to bold quilts. And bold quilts are frequently—and unabashedly—modern.

This issue of Modern Patchwork features longarm quilters, designers, and—yes—quilt patterns that make bold design statements. For instance, the innovative use of scale, cropping, and asymmetry in Sylvia Schaefer’s quilt “Minimalist Churn Dash” had the entire Modern Patchwork editorial team talking. The traditional Churn Dash block is a staff favorite, and Sylvia made her design shine with innovation and creativity. What was once a familiar block became more interesting and creative with the designer’s implementation of a series of bold choices. What if she had played it safe (in essence, hit the snooze button) and centered the block or repeated it in a more traditional pattern? I’m sure the quilt would have been lovely, but it might not have had the same dramatic impact or visual presence.

As you browse this issue, take a look at how other blocks have been stretched, scattered, or styled to feature innovative design choices with surprising results. And while you are at it, try starting your next quilt project with a bold design choice that stretches your creative muscles. I’m sure you’ll love the result!


Table of Contents

Quilts + Projects


  • Intentional Improv by Candy Glendening
  • Nurturing the Creative Soul by Kim Soper
  • Makers With Quilts by Amy Garro and Tisha Nagel
  • Stitch by Stitch by Timna Tarr


  • From the Editor
  • Fab Fabrics
  • Hot Picks
  • Call for Submissions
  • Project Index

Modern Basics

  • Foundation Paper Piecing
  • Flying Geese Blocks—Four at a time
  • Half-Square Triangle Blocks—Eight at a time
  • Curved Piecing
  • Half-Square Triangle Blocks—Two at a time
  • French-fold Binding
  • Half-Rectangle Triangle Blocks—Two at a time

Pick up your copy of Modern Patchwork for this pattern and more!

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