WInter Windows

Yesterday  I blogged about Lilac Crush, one of the quilts in Quilting Modern. Today, I am going to share Winter Windows, another quilt in the book. This was the quilt that taught me a lot of about quilting negative space.

Quilting Modern- winter windows

Unfortunately, I didn’t get a picture of the whole quilt, but I think that you can get the idea from this photo. The center of the quilt is pieced with random, irregular blocks with large areas of negative space on the top and the bottom.

At that time, I hadn’t quilted a whole lot of modern quilts, so I was still trying to figure out how to make the most of the negative space.

quilting in negative space

I ended up quilting the same random shapes in the top and bottom of the quilt, kind of like ghost blocks. They echo the piecing without distracting from the quilt top. This was the first time I had done that, but it wasn’t the last. This is one of the techniques that I talk about in my book.

Since the quilting in the negative space is dense, I opted for a simple echo quilting within the blocks. I also think that it provides a little bit of contrast.

piecing of modern quilt

So, the next time you are quilting a quilt with a lot of negative space, try quilting “blocks” in it. Not only will it break up the large areas, it will help emphasize the quilt pattern.

What do you think? Do you like quilting the negative space in a quilt?

In other news, I think I have a soon-to-be quilter on my hands! She loves my new Janome sewing machine!

my janome



  1. One of my favorite memories, etched as clearly as your sweet photo here, is of my nephew Parrish’s little hands, the ones that are miniatures of brother Wick’s tapered and talented fingers, guiding strips through the machine to make his first quilt: a small log cabin trivet. I don’t know if there’ll be a second or third. Visits with my nieces and nephews are precious owing to their distant homes. I hope so.

  2. I love the idea of echoing the blocks in the negative space. Great job!!

    You better get that little cutie her own sewign machine! You could lose a lot of sewing time that wya. 🙂 🙂


  3. The quilt is beautifully done and the picture of the little one is priceless! 🙂

  4. I love it!!!! and I can’t wait to get your new book:)

  5. Anonymous says:

    New to your blog and really enjoy it. Such great ideas. Signed up for one of your classes at MQS. This quilt pattern is really neat and I love the way you quilted it, such inspiration!! Like Theresa, I can’t wait to get your book. See you soon! Tammy

  6. Wow! Does ‘Little Bit’ look like her mom much? Love that smile.
    Gotta love when a kid catches the creative bug.

  7. My soon to be 6 year old is getting the Hello Kitty Janome for her birthday!

  8. I love the idea of ghost blocks in the negative space and this quilt looks very cool with that technique. And it’s lovely to see the next generation ready to go!

  9. I love negative space quilting,and your idea of quilting block shapes in the negative space is great – will have to give this a go! Do you mark outlines on the quilt before you start?

  10. Wow- I would have definitely looked at that quilt as a real challenge. I really like the ghost blocks though- that is why you are so great- it is an excellent idea and a really lovely effect. I would definitely like to quilt a quilt like that someday and I would also definitely be borrowing from your brilliant mind. Now… in other news…. does it get any cuter then that- what a little doll- looks like the apple didn’t fall too far from the tree!

  11. I find negative space a little tricky to decide what to do. But, as my confidence is growing I’m trying new motifs and getting more ‘adventurous’

  12. So fun to see your little girl at the sewing machine. My daughter (28 in a couple of days) used to sew with me a lot. She has made quilts and her own clothes. I believe her early start gave her a love for anything fiber. She knits weaves spins hand dyes her own yarn and gives lessons in all of the above. So it is time well invested for sure.
    Thanks for letting me brag :). I am amazed by you young women who at so young an age are successfully running your businesses and choosing careers that is doing something you love and being home lots with your families.
    Keep up the good work!!!
    PS Cant wait to get your book!

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