Monday, November 3, 2014

Wholecloth Quilting by Hand

The Liberty Bedcover: vintage re-purposed fabrics

Since I've added another book to my list, I decided to update my post on wholecloth quilting resources. Here it is again: my advice for books on wholecloth quilting.

Quilting is a popular craft right now, but hand-quilting is rare. A lot of the women I meet who are quilters only do pieced quilting, and then take the quilt in to have in machine-stitched, or only do even easier tie quilting, and most fabric stores cater to that market by stocking more blanket fleece and quilting cottons than quality apparel fabric. Wholecloth quilting is time consuming, but there's great appeal in the hand-quilted look. The simplicity of wholecloth quilting is just as beautiful to me as a pieced quilt!

Good books about Wholecloth and Whitework Quilting

Quilts of Provence, by Katherine Berenson, published 2007. Gorgeous color photos of original antique quilts and quilted clothing. This book focuses on French wholecloth quilting of the 18th Century, with some patterns shown in the back. I love this book. It's worth buying.

America's Quilts and Coverlets, by Carleton L Safford and Robert Bishop, published 1987(a good year). I picked up an old copy of this book for $1.50 at a book sale, and it's really a neat book! Since it's about all kinds of coverlets, not just quilts, there's more variety featured than just wholecloth quilts, but still a good resource. It's an older book, so the photos aren't nearly as good quality as in "Quilts of Provence", but it does cover a wide variety of American quilting and related folk art. Very interesting and pertinent to wholecloth quilting.

Whitework Quilting, by Karen McTavish, published 2004. I don't own this book and the library doesn't have it, but in a world with fifty million books about pieced quilting, this one is about whitework, so it has to be good. It's currently out of print, so even used copies are a little expensive.

Quilting by Averil Colby, published 1971. Another book I picked up at a thrift store for $3. I like this book a lot because it is mostly about wholecloth quilts. The book has chapters on tools, filler, and patterns, then goes through the centuries in order, starting with a chapter on 16th century quilts and going through early 20th century quilts. Great pictures, though all black-and-white, and lots of pattern detail from old quilts. Averil Colby is an interesting figure in herself; read a bit more about Averil HERE.

The Essential Quilter, by Barbara Chainey, 1993. I read a recommendation for this book on some other quilting website. It's a really cheap buy on Amazon! This is a great book for those beginning to quilt by hand because the whole book focuses entirely on hand-quilting, and describes the basic techniques in detail. It's an older book, but still with good pictures and relevant information. Especially considering the price, it's worth buying.

Also check out this list of resources and events at the Nebraska State Quilting Guild website. 

Quilt on!

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