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Stained Glass Quilts Reimagined
Allie Aller

C&T Publishing (distributed in the UK by Search Press)
2 February 2017/ ISBN 9781617452864
How-To Books/Quilting

Reviewed by Rachel A Hyde


Stained glass quilts have been around for a long time, but here is a book that “reimagines” them by updating the whole idea and making it more versatile. Why only use traditional materials when there are so many other choices, and why only use traditional methods when there are all sorts of other options?

One of the reasons why handcrafts are currently so popular is the way so many of them have been reinvented for modern people’s time, tools and tastes. While traditional quilts are lovely, mixing it up a bit and coming up with something fresh and new is the best way of keeping things up to date, and this book manages all that well. The book begins by looking at patterns and ways of being inspired by them such as coloring books, old embroidery transfers and searching the Internet. The next chapter talks you through the process of making a typical stained glass pattern, from simplifying a drawing to resizing it, making it into a set of templates and transferring the pattern to a background fabric. Then there is a look at “leading” options, from basic iron-on to less conventional choices such as yarn and ribbons, and how to use them complete with practice exercises. When you are ready, there are six projects to make with patterns on a sheet at the back for a throw, bed and couch quilts and wall-hangings. Everything you need is listed and most of the steps have a photograph so you can see what your work should look like. This is not a book on how to quilt for beginners; there are many of those around (check out the Search Press catalog), but a book that shows quilters how to do this particular style. Basic quilting knowledge is assumed, but you don’t have to be too advanced to be able to tackle these projects. Subjects for the projects include a Tiffany style peacock, floral welcome wreath, Frank Lloyd Wright and Mondrian windows, leafy vines and abstract shapes inspired by wind and sun. There is a list of suppliers at the back if you are in the US, and even a helpful look at good work habits including organizing a work table and keeping things tidy. To sum up a lovely book that will have quilters itching to get started.

If you cannot find a good range of quilting materials locally, try for a list of suppliers. Beginner books on quilting can also be bought here.

UK Reviewer: Rachel Hyde's work can be found in Sewing World, Sew Hip, Popular Crafts and other magazines.
Reviewed 2017