Gift Books for Quiltmakers

Pam, over at Hip to Be a Square Podcast, asked me to make a list of books I would recommend for holiday gifts. I was flattered to be asked, if a little mystified. After thinking it over I thought it was a good idea.

This won’t be a review post. If you want to read book reviews, you can click on the link in the idea cloud and read to your heart’s content. Most of the books I am recommending will be quilt books, but I am including a few non-quilt books as well.

Sandy did an amazing job in her list by categorizing and giving ratings in a recent podcast. I am not doing that.

In no particular order, the books I recommend are:

1. ColorPlay by Joen Wolfrom – this book about color begins the process of teaching a quiltmaker to make informed decisions about color and guides the quiltmaker through learning to put colors together.

2. Piecing: Expanding the Basics by Ruth McDowell – this book is out of print, but can be found as an eBook at the C&T site. You need this book if you want to be able to piece any shape to any other shape. This book will nudge you along the road to piecing odd angles and out of the ordinary shapes.

3. Adventures in Design by Joen Wolfrom – This book could be considered a companion to ColorPlay. While not the most comprehensive book on the subject, a good companion to others for learning about design. The examples in this book which illustrate design points are excellent.

4. The Quilter’s Book of Design, 2d edition by Ann Johnston – Johnston writes an excellent resource on design. I like the way it is laid out by principle and element. If used with Adventures in Design, the quiltmaker can get a good picture of design in quiltmaking.

5. Falling Together by Marisa de los Santos – de los Santos’ poetic language makes this a fabulous book to which to listen while sewing.

6. Threading the Needle by Marie Bostwick – another book, from the Cobbled Court series, that stands on its own very well. Recent economic troubles factor prominently in the story. New characters are introduced.

7. Masters: Art Quilts v.2 curated by Martha Sielman – art quilt eye candy. This book is all about inspiration. The photos are wonderful and this book provides a jolt to the creative process.

8. Quilts Made Modern by Weeks Ringle and Bill Kerr – I like this book because the tone is kind and because the authors weave additional information beyond how to make the included projects their way into the text. The book is infused with advice on color. The authors took the time to show and talk about a few color variations for each project. No, they didn’t make all of the quilts in multiple colorways, but used line drawings. This is not a “my way or the highway” design team. They want the reader to be able to envision the projects in different colors.

9. The Quilter’s Album of Patchwork Patterns by Jinny Beyer – This massive block dictionary includes nearly every block known to womankind. If you want to be inspired, this is the book for you. If you want to start learning how to draft blocks, this is the book for you. If you want patterns and projects skip this book. The 4,000+ block line drawings provide endless inspiration for quilts.

10. Sew What Bags: 18 pattern free projects you can customize to fit your needs by Lexie Barnes – this book is more than a bag pattern book; it really gives information about the structure of bags and how to design your own.

Happy Reading!