Quilt Photography Hints & Tips

We know that quilt photography can be difficult, so here are a few hints for when you submit your project photos. If you're looking for our project submission guidelines, or you want to send us a pattern idea, visit our Pattern Submissions page. To see examples of finished projects, and get a taste of our style, read an issue or two of our magazine, and peruse our Pattern Gallery

Along with your project submission, we will require a minimum of four photographs of your finished project. For quilts, we require one main photo of the finished quilt looking absolutely fabulous, and one of your quilt flat so the quilt layout is clear. These photos must be portrait style. You may also like to submit photos of the finished block/s and step-by-step photos. If you pattern requires templates or diagrams, we would prefer these be drawn on the computer. If you are unsure about this, please contact us before the deadline so we can assist. 

A few photography tips to help you get the best shots

  • We require a portrait orientation photo to use as the main cover photo for your project. Keep this in mind, so we don’t have to crop your lovely work to make it fit.

  • Take your photos in natural light where possible – beside a window so the light is coming in to the side. Use a piece of white cardboard or foam board on the other side to bounce the light back. Avoid using flash.

  • Photograph outside, out of direct sunlight. Consider a variety of backgrounds – parklands, beach, riverside, playgrounds… even your garden! Frame your photo to make the most of the background but make sure you keep the focus on the quilt.

  • Keep your background clear – make sure nothing distracts from the object you’re photographing (we’re talking accidental distractions and photo bombs, you can add props).

  • Stage a photo of the object in use – e.g. a bag with keys and phone, a table topper with a candlestick, a quilt wrapped around a child.

  • Use a white background for any close up photos showing steps or directions for the pattern. When taking close ups, get in close, focus on the subject and fill the frame with the object. Try getting on eye level with the quilt to give the best perspective.

  • Take lots of photos. Feel free to include a ‘hero shot’ of your project for us to consider for the front cover.

  • Do not resize your photos before uploading them to Dropbox (preferred), Google Drive or any similar online fileshare program.

Some examples of quilt photography from previous issues of Make Modern

Make Modern Issue 31 Cover.jpg

Example of a great cover photo – portrait style, featuring the full quilt with room around the outside for cropping – Wanderer Quilt by Paige Anderson from Issue 31.

Issue 28 Preview-page-004.jpg

Draping quilts, or hanging them on fences or over chairs can work well too. Here's a lovely example of a quilt in the wild – Kissing Arrows Quilt by Amanda McCabe from Issue 28.


Examples of block progress shots, a full flat quilt photo, and a close up showing the quilting – Which Way Is Up Quilt by Velda Roy from Issue 26.


More great examples from a small cushion project – block photos, digital computer-drawn diagrams, and a full cushion photo – Bush Gum Blossoms Cushion by Kristy Lea from Issue 25.