I currently have three quilty books on my wish list. For Keeps and The Quilt Block Cookbook by Amy Gibson and Wanderlust Quilts by Mandy Leins. If I started looking around I could easily add a dozen more to the list. I LOVE to read quilty books. They have beautiful pictures of beautiful quilts, they are inspiring, they are often funny or enlightening, and they get me excited to sew.
So today I decided to share some of my favorite quilty books. Keep in mind, I have not made most of the projects, but I do read these books like they are novels, from cover to cover, and I go to them when I am looking for inspiration or just something pretty to drool over.
Weeks and Bill are a husband and wife team and they have been making “modern” quilts since long before it was cool. These two designers/quilters are true artists and have received commissions from museums and have been featured in the New York Times, O, and TIME Magazine, among others. They have written several books and are down to earth, uber-talented and passionate about quilting.
What I love about this book, other than the beautiful quilts, is that nearly 50 pages are dedicated to design principles and then they spend the last 30 pages covering quilt construction. While a lot of this is stuff I already know, it is great to have as a reference right alongside the 10 patterns they feature in this book.
I was attracted to this book because of the title. I am a member of an online modern bee myself, so when I saw this book, I was very curious. This book explores the journey of 12 quilters who each month work on a quilt designed or conceived of by one of the members. The quilts are all very modern and very different and the voice of each quilter is distinct and beautiful. What I loved about this book, even more than the quilts, was the story it told. The sisterhood that is shared by these women, many of whom have never met in person. I could really relate to this experience because I have had a similar on with my bee. I also appreciated that they spent a few pages discussing how to set up and organize your own bee and they also devoted one chapter to tips and techniques for everything from selecting fabric to binding.
by Boo Davis
I don’t really know what to say about Boo Davis and her book other than “WOW.” It is page after page of awesome. From her whimsical owl to her punk rock skull, she takes quilting by the horns and doesn’t let go. Her designs may not always fit the current definition of modern, but there is nothing traditional about them either. Her patterns are simple and easy to follow and yet yield very complex looking designs. She also includes some quilt basics at the beginning and tons of gorgeous photos of the projects.
Jacquie is considered one of the leaders of the modern quilting movement and this book is a great exploration of what has made her so popular. The projects are interesting and different and some I love more than others, but what I do love about the book is the way she writes about improvisation. It is inspiring and empowering. Paired with stunning detail shots of the quilts, this book is a must have for anyone interested in the modern aesthetic, whether they are brave enough to dive into it or not.
I have written about this book before, but no accounting of my favorite quilty books would be complete without further mention of this book. It is the book that started it all for me. I had just begun quilting when I happened upon this book at a bookstore, not a quilt shop. It was like a breath of fresh air after everything I had been seeing at my local quilt shops. Denyse’s designs are so simple and unassuming and yet simply stunning. I want to be just like her someday!
That’s it for my current favorite quilty books. But I will leave you with two other titles that are not exclusively quilty but would still be awesome for anyone who sews: Bend the Rules Sewing by Amy Karol and Handmade Home by Amanda Blake Soule.