Since I have been quilting for more than 35 years I seldom buy quilting books anymore. Most of them are no longer interesting to me – been there, done that. But browsing Amazon I discovered “Artful Improv” by Cindy Grisdela. I follow her on Instagram and love the quilts she makes and I liked the cover – all these bright and colorful blocks! I ordered the book and I can say it is one of my best purchases of the last year.
The book is a gentle guide to improvisational quilting. By gentle I mean that you start with blocks that still resemble traditional quilting – log cabin blocks, drunkard’s path and even houses. But when you insert angled strips, curved stripes and/or a lot of negative space you suddenly have a beautiful modern quilt.
The book is a treasure chest filled with an abundance of inspiration but also with very clear tips how to cut, sew, quilt and finish a quilt. What I like best are the numerous photos of quilts that show how much you can achieve with fabric and quilting lines.
This book opened up a new way of quilting that I thoroughly enjoy! (You can see my first improv quilt here.)
by Cindy Grisdela
C&T Publishing, 2016
My Book of the Month for February is
Inspired by Endangered Species by Donna Marcinkowski DeSoto
I discovered this book purely by chance browsing in an online bookstore and after seeing a few pages I just had to buy it. And I’m so happy I did.
After watching volunteers rescue a nest of turtle eggs and provide a safe hatching place for them, Donna Marcinkowski DeSoto started to study endangered species, beginning her research with the Red List of the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources). As a quilter herself she decided that quilts would be the perfect medium to educate people about endangered plants and animals in a non-threatening way.
This led to 182 quilts by 129 artists, each one 24 x 24 inches, depicting an abundance of endangered animals and flowers – breathtaking quilts on one side and alarming facts on the other. The whole collection premiered at the International Quilt Festival in Houston in 2019.
And at the same time Donna Marcinkowski DeSoto edited this beautiful coffeetable-book with all the quilts and interesting details concerning the animals and plants.
Since I got the book it’s on my desk and whenever I’m taking a break I’m browsing in it. The quilts are beautiful works of art and the pictures really do them justice. The information provided is interesting but sometimes rather depressing. But then you can always skip to the end of the book where 4 success stories are told.
I am really happy that I found and bought this book and I’m sure that everybody (not only quilters) will love it as well. Don’t forget to put it on your wishlist.
Inspired by Endangered Species
by Donna Marcinkowski DeSoto
Schiffer Publishing, Ltd., 2019