If you were a quilter in March of 2011, you will probably recognize this image.
Infinite Variety: Three Centuries of Red & White Quilts, the five-day show of Joanna Rose’s quilt collection at the Park Avenue Armory in New York City. It was a spectacular display of 800 red and white quilts. The color combination is an iconic one for quilts and quiltmakers, whether the fabrics are solids or prints.
To celebrate her love of these iconic two-color quilts, award-winning quilter, designer and historian, Linda Pumphrey has authored a gorgeous book Red & White Quilting: An Iconic Tradition in 40 Blocks. Just so you know, Linda really knows her “stuff”… she’s served on several international and national boards, including that of the International Quilt Association, the International Quilt Study Center & Museum, and the Quilts, Inc. Advisory Council. During her time working for Mountain Mist, the batting company, she acted as the curator of the Historical Mountain Mist Corporate Quilt Collection.
Drawing inspiration from the Red and White quilt collection at the International Quilt Study Center & Museum in Lincoln, Nebraska, the book presents forty quilt blocks and fourteen quilt projects inspired by the museum’s quilts. Meaning… this is Red & White Quilt Block book and a Red & White Quilt Project book. It doesn’t get any better than that!
This is Drinking Party – it combines a Drunkard’s Path block with a Sunburst Block.
Note: All images from the book have been generously provided by F+W Media. (I whined.)
In addition to the gorgeous blocks and quilts, I love that the history of red fabrics – Turkey Reds – is provided. A Foreward by Deborah Roberts, a noted quilt and textile historian provides the history of the fabrics, and a Preface by Carolyn Ducey, Curator of Collections at the International Quilt Study Center & Museum, provide a subtext to the enduring popularity of this classic color combination. Linda’s Introduction continues that.
Oak Leaf Block.
As with any really really good quilt book, there is an excellent chapter on Tools & Techniques. It includes Linda’s list of go-to supplies and sections with advice on Choosing Fabric, Pre-washing or Not Pre-washing , Making Blocks, Pressing, Choosing Batting and Measuring. Since one of my hobbies is “picking the minds” of quilters, especially those that know as much about quilting as Linda does, I particularly liked this part of the book. I always learn something.
My favorite line is – There is more than one way to accomplish the same result.
You had to know this Sawtooth Block would be one of my favorites.
The chapter on The Blocks is excellent. It includes a little history of each block, the size, Materials Required, Cutting Instructions and Block Assembly. Pictures of quilts and projects are interspersed throughout.
Oak Reel Block. For the book, the blocks were appliquéd with a popcorn/star stitch or blanket stitch. Hand-appliqué is obviously an option.
Unnamed Block. (Another one of my favorites because of all those triangles.)
Ring Around the Rosy. This is a 52″ wall-hanging that combines Oak Reel Blocks with a Wagon Wheel Block.
Starry Flower Garden – this quilt measures 80″ square. It combines Oak Reel and Flower Blocks with a Paper Cut Appliqué block, surrounded by an over-sized Ohio Star Block.
All of the blocks and almost all of the quilts in the book were pieced and/or appliquéd by Linda, and the gorgeous machine-quilting was done by Karen Kielmeyer. Mary Pumphrey snuck in a quilt.
Even if you have no interest in making a quilt using a solid red and a solid white, Red & White Quilting is an excellent addition to every quilter’s library. Every one of the blocks and projects included could easily be made using prints in any style or color palette. Including… blue and white.
To help at least one of you add this book to your library… we’re giving away a copy of Red & White Quilting and 3 yards each of the same Bella Solids Linda used for her quilts – Bella 16 – Christmas Red and Bella 200 – Off White.
Simply leave a comment by Midnight on Sunday, October 15 telling us if you’ve ever made a red and white quilt. Did you use solids? Or prints?