This is not your grandma’s swastika


This is a Swastika.

It is an equilateral cross with four arms bent ninety degrees.

It is an old symbol used by people around the world.

Then, it was adopted by someone who did something bad.

No one has looked upon the symbol the same since.


The symbol had no choice in the matter. It got picked and that was its bad luck.

You and I have a choice though.

We can choose to see hatred and violence in this symbol, or we can choose one of the other meanings and move forward from there (c’mon, you’re sitting there in front of the internet: go look it up!).

This is the quilt pattern I’m currently working on, Do-Si-Do:

Single Do-Si-Do motif (black)
Single Do-Si-Do motif (black)

Several people talk about seeing a swastika in this pattern. Yeah, there’s a loose interpretation of a swastika, but that wasn’t my intent.

When I originally designed this pattern, I had two objectives: create a block with fourfold rotation that extends outward. I’m pleased with the results.

But a swastika?

Compare the two drawings.

Besides having four arms each, they bear little resemblance.

The trunk of my Do-Si-Do windmill is rotated out of vertical; it has a “laid back” appearance. The four arms are open wider than ninety degrees, and the little triangle at the end looks like a hand.

I think my windmill looks friendlier than your swastika. What do you think?

2 thoughts on “This is not your grandma’s swastika

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.