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Quilters’ Inspiration All Around Us

Quilters’ Inspiration All Around Us

By Janelle Cahoon, Quiltcentric

Inspiration is “any stimulus to creative thought or action,” according to Webster’s Dictionary, and clearly any of us can be inspired in many ways as quilters.

Major sources of inspiration for creative artists throughout history include natural surroundings, life experiences and cultural traditions.  Quilters can use these inspirations just as painters or sculptors do – sometimes with literal interpretations like realistic flower appliqué, or sometimes with an abstract work in sunset colors.

If you’re looking for inspiration for your next quilt, where do you look first?  Maybe photos or other quilts on the internet or in magazines, maybe patterns at the quilt shop, or maybe a particular piece of fabric.

Try broadening your search and look all around.  Consider your flower garden, the kitchen floor, the colors in your new blouse, or a walk through the woods.  Broaden the sources of inspiration even farther and think about your favorite sayings, literature, and the music on your iPod.  Now consider the color red, the feeling of cold, or the birth of your first child.

What kind of quilts could you make with inspirations like these?  How would these inspirations change and enhance the quilts you already make?  Try it.  You’ll be pleased with the results.  Whether you prefer realistic or abstract interpretations, broadening your sources of inspiration will open new doors of creativity and your quilts will be more unique and interesting. You’ll see yourself grow as a quiltmaker and as an artist.


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