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Book review:Create your own free-form quilts

Paperback:96 pages Publisher:C&T Publishing (December 16,2011) Language:English ISBN-10:1607052504 ISBN-13:978-1607052500

Author:Rayna Gillman

This book is your key to learning how to create original,eclectic and visually engaging quilts without feeling the need to follow rules about seam sizes or what fabric and color combinations to use.  You’ll find Rayna’s stress free approach to free form cutting,piecing and blending that stack of hand dyed and printed fabric you have with the off the shelf commercial prints a refreshing way to approach creating your next quilt.

Broken down into 8 main chapters beginning with some guidelines on getting organized and ways to sort your fabrics.  This opening chapter will have you thinking twice about tossing that ugly fabric you think is unusable after you read the case study of an ugly fabric that beautifully illustrates that no matter how ugly you think a piece of fabric is,if you cut it up it can be transformed into something wonderful.  Now that you’re looking at your fabric stash with fresh eyes it’s time to start cutting and sewing strips.  No rulers necessary for this step.  Strips are cut free hand and Rayna’s clearly illustrated directions on how to cut and sew strips of various widths as well as how to create strip sets with curved edges are easy to follow and understand.   The next several chapters of the book show you how to transform those strip sets by slicing,dicing,combining,adding borders and strip slices,cutting and rotating and encourage you to continue to be fearless with your rotary cutter and to trust your instincts with regards to color combinations without worrying about breaking any rules about what color should be placed to the one next to it.

In the last chapter of the book Rayna introduces you to working with a design wall and your design partners,“ad hoc” and “slow”.  Again taking a no rules approach here to spontaneous creating she doesn’t just show you a finished quilt but illustrates with photos the process of auditioning different options for putting together modules of your strip steps.  This chapter has a different tone than the rest of the book in that Rayna encourages you to approach the design and composition of your quilt with your strip sets and modules at a slower more thoughtful pace.  Taking time to step back from your design,reflect on and letting it evolve without rushing through it.

Rayna has a engaging conversational tone that make the book a very enjoyable read and the entire book is beautifully illustrated with clear,bright,vibrant photographs of step by step directions,examples and artwork.  Highly Recommended!

7 comments to Book review:Create your own free-form quilts

  • I have Rayna’s first book and love her have at it attitude. This one looks just as promising and I gifted myself the book for Christmas.

  • I just got the book by Rayna Gillman and I love it. I haven’t tried anything yet,but hope to after Christmas.

  • B. J. Berlo

    Just received the book in the mail from Amazon and LOVE<LOVE<LOVE it! I especially like the no ruler advice and her "just do it"advice. I've already read it cover to cover twice and have sent a copy to my quilter-sister for Christmas. There are no rules to follow (except your own) and Rayna makes you feel that you'll be successful no matter what you do. Definitely,my kind of book.

  • Marijke Donath

    Sounds nice. Will it be available in the Netherlands?

    • Administrator

      Marijke I don’t know if the book will be available in your area. You’ll need to check with your local booksellers or stockists and ask them for it.

  • Sounds like my kind of book.

  • Sandy Jandik

    It sounds like an interesting book.