The “plus” sign is a universal signal that extends beyond cultural and language barriers. For over a century, at least since the founding of the International Red Cross, it has been recognized as a sign of relief during times of war, famine, and disaster. Right now, there’s certainly a lot in the world to feel down about. And yet, some people are naturally able to show optimism and hope. Others are more pessimistic, cynics or critics apt to see the negative.
No matter where your personality falls on this spectrum, all can benefit from seeking ways to add more positive energy to their lives. We hope our Plus issue will spread some good vibes into the world this spring and into the lives of our readers. Please enjoy a preview of some of the high energy quilts included in our 14th issue.
Treasure Map by Maria Shell @talesofastitcher
Maria Shell has been playing with the Crossed Square motif for almost a decade. Treasure Map was an early exploration of the pattern for Shell. The colors used in Treasure Map are playful and we find ourselves wanting to hop from block to block.
At the Junction by Marla Varner @pennylanequilts
At the Junction was made using a method taught by Sujata Shah. Improvisation and freehand cutting techniques were used to puzzle the irregular shapes together. Depth is added to the quilt with the careful attention paid to how the background colors blend into one another. It's as though the pluses grow out of darkness into light.
Scrap Positive by Amanda Anderson @mandyandydesigns
When Amanda is creating, she feels most inspired by scraps and making something useful and beautiful from something that’s considered less than. The subtlety of how the pluses build upon one another creates an interesting tetris effect.
Positivity by Don Wattam @drgriz
The plus sign in the center of Positivity was not part of the initial plan of this quilt but a ‘happy accident.’ The illusion of movement created by the microlines of the quilt keep the eye moving while the center plus grounds it.
Untitled by Nancy Purvis @nancypurvisstudio
This quilt was created using scraps from two apparel companies: Pamut Apparel and Ace&Jig.
Nancy says that, ‘By limiting my choices to the little amount of fabric I had, it created exciting parameters for me that I found challenging. I discovered cohesion between the fabrics, even though they were leftovers from two different seasons, from two different brands.” The quilt has an incredibly organic feel to it. Purvis has done a superb job mixing prints with solid fabrics in an interesting way that lifted the overall aesthetic of the quilt.
Plus Surround by Paige Alexander @quiltedblooms
Paige has softened the angles of the plus sign by adding a circular element to her quilt. The machine quilting lines radiate out from the center of the quilt, enhancing the circular feel of it.
Plus Surround is one of sixteen projects included in Modern Plus Sign Quilts, co-authored with Paige Alexander and Cheryl Brickey and published by Stash Books/C&T Publishing.
You can find these plus quilts and more in Curated Quilts, Issue no. 14: Plus. Purchase your copy today!
By Brittany Bowen Burton