Thursday, June 21, 2012

A List of My Favorite Quilt Books

This afternoon I was working in my quilting room (a stolen corner of my boys very large bedroom), when I had to be amused at what I was hearing from the stereo.  Eric Clapton.  Chosen by my 11 yr. old son!  Hey, he's totally normal in every other way, but it got me to thinking about influences and how I got where I am today quilty-wise.
Air drying some quilts on a nice day.
I'd have to say that my Grandmother on my mom's side (an avid and talented quilter) was my earliest known association with quilting.  All of my oldest siblings and I have excellent memories of fighting over the best quilts at G'mas house when we got to sleep over.  That was when I was quite young.  But later on?  I'd say some great quilting books were the most genuine influence and, it almost goes without saying, inspiration.

I decided to put together a list of the best quilting books I have ever bought or received as a gift.  These are books that I have returned to time and again throughout my years of quilting.  I couldn't possibly be where I am today without these books sitting on my shelf.

  • Plaids & Stripes by Roberta Horton
  • Whimsies & Whynots: A Playful Approach to Quiltmaking by Mary Lou Weidman
  • Out of the Box: Unleash Your Creativity Through Quilts by Mary Lou Weidman (a follow up)
  • Spectacular Scraps by Judy Hooworth
  • Transitions: Unlocking the Creative Quilter Within by Andrea Balosky
  • Quilting With Style: Principles For Great Pattern Design by Gwen Marston & Joe Cunningham
  • Setting Solutions by Sharyn Craig
  • Great Sets by Sharyn Craig (even better than previous book)
  • Around the Block by Judy Hopkins
  • 501 Rotary-cut Quilt Blocks by Judy Hopkins (a more comprehensive follow-up book)
  • Collaborative Quilting by Gwen Marston & Freddy Moran
  • Freddy & Gwen Collaborate Again by Gwen Marston & Freddy Moran (a follow up of previous)
  • Wednesday's Best by Cheri Saffiote of Indygo Junction, Inc.
I also have many other books that I love to look through time and again by authors such as Barb Adams & Alma Allen of Blackbird Designs, Sue Spargo, Kathy Doughty & Sarah Fielke of the Material Obsessions 1 & 2 books, Mary Mashuta, several Amish style Quilt books, Carrie Nelson of Miss Rosies Quilt Co. , Kim Diehl 's books and of course lots more books by the incredible authors Roberta Horton and Gwen Marston.

I love books that encourage spontaneity, individual expression, the telling of stories, freedom from restrictive quilting rules, and the basics to finding and building personal creativity.  Pattern books alone cannot begin to cover all the information life-long quilters crave.


  1. Oh, I love the photo of the quilts on the porch. Just makes me want to sit and sip an ice tea while I admire the quilts. As far as your book list goes...I couldn't agree more about Freddy and Gwen's books (love them) but you mention a couple I've never heard is that possible!?!? I'm off to google them now! Thanks for sharing!

  2. great picture! wish I was sitting on the porch! I agree I love books that inspire me
    I see a picture of a quilt and get an idea!
    and off I go , thats a good book to me! I also love quilt books to use for references like the book quilting with style, great book to look though for quilting...
    one never has enough books!

  3. So fun to see your list...I have all but two of these books!

  4. I totally agree with your list! I have most of those books too. Expect for the Andrea Balosky one - I'll have to look for that one!
    But I have to add that I also find Gwen Marston's books Liberated Quiltmaking II, String Quilts and now the new book on Liberated Medallion Quilts are at the top of my list. She's a big believer in making your OWN quilt, not a copy of someone else's.
    And Tonya Riccuci's book Word Play Quilts is an inspiration to me too!
    I'm sure there's a couple that I'm forgetting. My favorite books aren't full of patterns but full of how to make your own quilt. Technique over patterns!


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