by Shayla Wolf, QM Associate Editor
It is that time of year again! Time to sit on a beach, on a patio at a lake house or in a foldable chair at a peewee soccer game. Summer is full of long car rides and other events that are perfect for some light reading. If you are like me, you grab the newest quilting book or magazine before you get on an airplane to make the ride fly by! I have compiled 20 sizzling quilting books for you to dive into this summer to keep the creativity flowing even when you are away from your machine.
Country Girl Modern
by Jo Kramer & Kelli Hanken
This book is full of beautiful traditional quilts with a modern flair. In addition to great quilt patterns, Country Girl Modern has a little peek behind the scenes of what it is like to be a mother-daughter duo and the inspiration behind each quilt. Another fun treat is the stunning and unique photography. The bright and bold quilts are draped over farming equipment, fences, hay bails and more!
The Quilter’s Practical Guide to Color
by Becky Goldsmith
This book is exactly what the title claims! Becky takes you step-by-step through color theory. The Quilter’s Practical Guide to Color covers the color wheel, color schemes, value, contrast, clarity, texture, scale, designing, auditioning and so much more! In addition to all the invaluable knowledge, there are 10 unique and fun projects! Becky takes the fear out of fabric selection with tip and tricks specifically geared towards quilters.
The Modern Medallion Workbook
by Janice Zeller Ryan and Beth Vassalo
Medallion quilts are all the rage right now! Janice and Beth brought 9 other modern quilt designers together to create this fun workbook full of ideas and tips. There are 11 patterns with different centers and borders that can be mixed and matched to create your very own medallion quilt. Detailed instructions cover bias tape making, the use of negative space, fabric auditioning and more. Plus, there are coloring pages in the back of the book to experiment with!
by Jen Kingwell
Quilt Lovely is filled to the brim with bright and beautiful scrap quilt patterns. Jen Kingwell is an Australian designer with a playful and colorful approach to quilting. Her unique style shines through in these 15 appliqué and pieced projects. In addition to detailed instructions and illustrations, the book contains great tips for working with templates, keeping your projects organized, multiple appliqué techniques and color direction.
Civil War Remembered
by Mary Etherington and Connie Tesene
Love reproductions fabrics? Then this is the book for you! Mary and Connie compiled 19 stunning traditional quilts into one book. Beautiful photography, amazing colors, multiple quilt sizes and breath-taking patchwork fill these pages. Learn from the experts how to achieve both scrappy and plan looks while creating these classic blocks. These distinctive designs will have you wishing for time in your sewing room. I know I am already picturing these quilt in my favorite colors!
Fabric Printing at Home
by Julie B. Booth
I picked up this book and immediately thought, “What a perfect summer project to do with kids!” This book shows you how to create wonderful designs with everyday objects, kitchen supplies, fruits and veggies! Detailed instructions, bright photos and fun tips will lead you through multiple family-friendly printing techniques.
Sew & Stitch Embroidery
by Alyssa Thomas
Looking for some fun handwork to keep your hands busy during a long road trip this summer? Alyssa, of Penguin & Fish, has compiled an amazing assortment of simple sewing projects with hand embroidery designs. Each project is unique and has a touch of whimsy! From owls adorning wall art to a whale covered shower curtain and octopus bedding to dinosaur finger puppets – this book will have you itching to stitch in no time! The book also includes the iron-on transfer sheet and a stitch library to aid those of us who are handwork beginners.
The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters
by Sherri Lynn Wood
If you are like me, improv quilting is a little intimidating. I love the look, but am nervous to let go! The Improv Handbook slowly takes you through approaches and methods to improv sewing and teaches you to set your own goals and limits. Instead of a book full of patterns to replicate, Sherri helps you discover your own style! Clean and bright photography on each page will keep you inspired!
By the Block
by Sioban Rogers
This book is perfect for what Siobaun calls “time poor quilters.” These are the quilters (and I am one of them!) who want to make large beautiful quilts that look complex but are simple to make because of time constraints. By the Block contains 18 beautiful and surprisingly simple quilts that can be made over a weekend. Fabulous quilts and unique fabric choices will keep you flipping from one page to the next in this great book.
by Rana Heredia
This book is just what the title states! Rana took classic quilt blocks and add a fun flair – string piecing! Simply Strings contains 12 quilt patterns that will excite everyone from novice to experienced quilters and modern to traditional sewers and step-by-step directions on the technique of string-piecing. Bright quilts and clear instructions make this a must-have for summer sewing. I mean… just look at those adorable houses
Step-by-Step Free-Motion Quilting
by Christina Cameli
Get inspired to finish some of those quilt tops this summer. Christina Cameli’s hand drawn how-to directions for free-motion quilting makes even the non-quilting sewers out there want to give it a whirl! Great illustrations break down 80 different quilting designs into manageable pieces that we can follow and replicate. With fun fills, unique scallops, twisty twirls, funky florals, leafy vines and more, you will surely find the inspiration to finish your next quilt.
1000 Quilt Inspirations
by Sandra Sider
Looking for inspiration? Look no further! This perfect coffee table book contain 1000 beautiful quilts that are broken down into 4 categories: Traditional Designs, Modern Designs, Pictorial Art Quilt Designs and Abstract & Conceptual Art Quilt Designs. Each category is individually inspiring and could lift us from our creative slumps.
When Bad Things Happen to Good Quilters
by Joan Ford
This relatable book will make you giggle in agreement. We have all been there and had something silly happen to us or a project and it is nice to hear we are not alone. Joan has created a humorous survival guide for fixing unfortunate mishaps and finishing even the most stubborn of quilting projects. This book is a great resource to have on hand just in case something unforeseen happens to our treasures quilts.
Smash Your Precut Stash
by Kate Carlson Colleran and Elizabeth Veit Balderrama
Get inspired to finally cut into those precious precuts you’ve been saving up! Kate and Elizabeth have created 13 fantastic quilt designs tailored for Jelly Rolls, Charm Squares and Fat Quarters with yardage. Not only are the quilts gorgeous, the tips and tricks will help you make a stunning quilt from the fabric you have stashed, resize quilts, adding and subtracting borders and create a special focus on color, print or scale.
The Paper-Pieced Home
by Penny Layman
This charming book is full of clever and creative paper-pieced blocks. Penny shares a step-by-step lesson on the technique and loads of tips for those who are a little nervous about paper-piecing. The Paper-Pieced Home includes blocks featuring retro televisions, fruit bowls, cast-iron skillets, men’s and women’s shoes, a claw-foot bathtub, a stack of books, paper clips, a viewfinder, lions, bulldozers, watering cans and so much more!
50 Quilts from Quiltmaker
by the editors of QM
You caught me! This is a little bit of a plug, but I find this book inspiring and think you might too! We compiled 50 of our favorites quilts patterns from the 100 Blocks series into one large book. Dividing the quilts into 5 sections makes the quilts easy to find when seeking out something special. We have appliqué quilts, pieced quilts, foundation-pieced quilts, mixed technique quilts and quilts with fun borders. See how we turned 12″ blocks into 50 fabulous quilt designs!
Where Poppies Grow
by Denniele Bohannon and Janice Britz
Where Poppies Grow is a block-of-the-month made to honor those who served in World War I. Denniele and Janice teamed up to create the beautiful book and remember Almo O’Kell, Denniele’s grandfather. Along with each stunning block pattern, you get a little peek into Almo’s life as a solider. This unique quilt book offers 7 additional projects to accompany the BOM quilt: 3 quilt striking quilts, two table runners, a poppy pin and a poppy pin cushion.
Irish Chain Quilts
by Melissa Corry
Melissa combined a little bit of everything into this enchanting book: Traditional Quilts with a Twist, Modern Patchwork, Improvisational Piecing and Appliqué! Each quilt is new and interesting take on the classic Irish Chain. It is amazing to see all the unique ways to make 1 design, each with their own style and flair. Irish Chain Quilts contain directions for 15 different quilts that are the perfect combination of color and movement.
You Inspire Me to Quilt
by Cheryl Arkison
10 beautiful projects, tips from top designers and stunning photography fill the pages of You Inspire Me to Quilt and boy does it make me want to get back in front of my machine! Designs from Jen Carlton-Bailly, Cynthia Frenette, Carolyn Friedlander, Andrea Harris, Rossie Hutchinson, Heather Jones, Amanda Jean Nyberg, Blair Stocker and Cheryl Arkison are inspired by everyday life. This book encourages you to spend a few minutes a day finding creative inspiration around you.
Every Last Piece
by Lynn Harris
Lynn takes you through her experience with scrap quilting and gives you permission to play in this thoughtful book. We all have scraps. It is a part of quilting. Every Last Piece covers every step of using leftover fabric pieces, from organization to string-piecing and more. Get inspired to dig through your scrap bins while flipping through the pages of Lynn’s personal scrap quilt collection.
Whew! That was a pretty long list. I hope something caught your eye! For more summer inspiration, be sure to pick up or new special issue: Quiltmaker Reader Favorites!