I find beauty in traditional quilting patterns, too. I particularly like the log cabin pattern for blocks and triangles absolutely rule. I usually resort to paper piecing to get those precise points. Of course, when I explore the traditional techniques I have to use some outrageous colors to really wow the viewer. See for yourself!
Wonder of wonders, this is actually a functional piece! Its a lap blanket and a play on the colorway you often see in vintage amish quilts: all solid fabrics with lots of black combined with jewel and even pastel colors. This quilt is called "A hare off amish" which is a play on the composition of the black fabric which was a vintage print that had gray bunnies with yellow or blue capes on the black background.
Can you see the bunnies here? Its kind of cute and yet somehow ominous-- all that black, and why are those rabbits wearing capes, anyway? Another wonder--this quilt is hand quilted, something I don't really do anymore. The size is exactly the that of a plane lap blanket ('cause thats what the batting is!).
This quilt features some of the fabulous fabric designed by Kaffe Fasset. He does big bold and colorful prints that really resonate with me. Because of their large scale they are often difficult to incorporate. Using them as a border is a good strategy.
Another one of my favorite fabric designers is Jane Sassaman. Combining brights with black and white is a favorite technique of mine. I think this quilt looks a little like one of the old timey test patterns. The points of the quilt are reinforced with TimTex so they do actually maintain their stiffness even when hung on the wall.
Bright colors, paper pieced blocks combined with black and white stripes--all my favorite tricks!