The one thing I get to do as the host of the Modern Sewciety podcast is chat with authors in the sewing industry. It is a pretty dreamy job I must admit. I am a cheerleader of others’ accomplishments so the podcast just seems to be a the perfect form of media for me. My guests and I can have a chat while we are still in our jammies which is a win/win for both of us. The relaxed format for the podcast really helps me have a genuine chat with my guest. I feel like it really let’s us get to talk about the details of the book they have just written, the real nitty gritty details. I love those chats when the guest really tells us the ups and downs of the reality of writing a book. Today I am sharing my top 5 picks for your quilting library and many have been on the podcast so I have added those links as well. I hope you will check out the books and the podcast.
I love to invite a guest on to chat about their book because I always imagine the hours and hours of planning, writing, and proofing a book that I am sure come with a fair share of ups and downs. I often refer to books as the author having a book baby. The process of writing a book is usually something like this – the formation of an idea, formulating an outline or proposal for the book, deciding if you want an agent or to self publish, writing the book, proofing everything in the book several times, and then printing it. All of those tasks usually happen behind the scenes and take months and months then once the book is released into the world the author now has to work on promoting the book. It is a lengthy process that I am sure can be grueling but also exhilarating. The promotion of the book really dictates its success or failure so the author wants as many people as possible to see, hear, read, and ultimately buy their book. I am so happy to be one of the promotional stops for authors in the sewing industry. It makes me so happy to see someone accomplish something so big and personal.
I thought today I would share my top 5 books for your sewing library. Let’s get started.
My sweet friend Amanda Jean Nyberg, from Crazy Mom Quilts, is a lover of scraps. Like she LOVES them and USES them to make amazing quilts! She can use the tiniest piece of fabric that other quilters may toss in the trash and make it useful. She creates some amazing quilts with scraps and I often wonder how she gets those tiny pieces organized into a quilt that looks so effortless. Well in Amanda’s second book, No Scrap Left Behind, she is showing us how we can take those small scraps and make them into something beautiful and useful. It is the perfect blend of loving to sew but also loving to use up every.single.last.piece of that fabric you most likely paid a good penny for. Note:: Amanda’s first book with Cheryl Arkison, Sunday Morning Quilts, is amazing as well. I would highly recommend both books as must haves.
Blair Stocker, from the blog Wise Craft Handmade, is just creative when it comes to using what you have to make something useful, and more importantly, beautiful. She is a blogging pioneer and has been blogging her handmade journey since 2008. She doesn’t just quilt but dabbles in a variety of sewing and DIY areas that she documents on her blog. She recently released her second book, Wise Craft Quilts, which focuses on using recycled materials to make a variety of projects for your home. Have you ever wondered what to make with your wedding dress? Have you ever scored a bundle of vintage material? What about those dress shirts your husband doesn’t wear any longer? Baby clothes you can’t part with? Blair has a great variety of projects in the book to use up those loved treasures. I wanted to put this on list because I think it is a great way to make something without a lot of money in materials upfront. Note:: Blair’s first book is Wise Craft:: Turning Thrift Store Finds, Fabric Scraps, and Natural Objects into Stuff You Love.
Carolyn Friedlander is a fellow Floridian and quilter. I have been lucky enough to have lunch with her often when I travel to her hometown which is just surreal to me. Definitely a perk of the job and living in Florida. She is such an amazing creative in the way she thinks about the materials she uses, the intentionality of the process, and presentation of her finished projects. She is a trained architect turned fabric designer and I feel like the sewing industry really gained a gem when she made the switch. Her debut book, Savor Each Stitch, is one of my all time favorite books. I read the entire book cover to cover the moment it landed in my hands. She has a variety of projects in the book but the amazing thing about the book is the stories she shares about each project. I haven’t mastered hand sewing yet but I think Carolyn is going to be the reason I do some day which is what the book encourages. It isn’t about finishing something fast but finishing it with happiness and intention.
I chatted about Savor Each Stitch with Carolyn on episode 032 if you want to check it out.
Heather Jones is an artist with a passion for sewing. She looks at fabric and thread as a way to express the many beautiful things in her every day life. I drive by a building and think that is a cool pattern of windows but Heather drives by and thinks I need to make that into a quilt pattern. I have always wanted to make what I see in my every day life into a quilt, cue the design I see on the walls every time I walk by a local store in town, but I just didn’t know where to start. Heather’s book, Quilt Local, helps you through the process of looking at the every day things we love so much and translating them into a sewn project you can love and cherish. I also like that the designs are modern and doable with several different examples to show how different fabrics make each pattern unique.
I chat about the book with Heather on episode 074 if you want to check it out.
Amy Gibson, from Stitchery Dickory Dock, is a creative powerhouse and has been blogging since 2011. Her second book, The Quilt Block Cookbook, takes simple blocks to a whole new level. Amy looks at simple blocks most quilters enjoy making already in a whole new way by combining them into new blocks that are nothing short of awesome. The idea behind the book is to learn about the simple blocks as the ingredients and you put the different ingredients into a recipe making many different combinations of quilt blocks. This is my number one choice on the list because I have recommended this book to experienced quilters who love all of the different block variations while the beginners really learn the basics of quilt block assembly. It is one of my all time references for sewing and inspiration. The pictures are outstanding, the instructions are clear, and the options for projects are endless. Note her first book is For Keeps and is a great addition to any quilting library as well.
I chatted with her on episode 098 about the book if you want to check it out.
I do have plans to have Amanda and Blair on the podcast to chat about their books so stay tuned for that. You can subscribe to the podcast here so you don’t miss any new episodes. I also would love to have Carolyn back on for a chat since our chat was several years ago.
I hope that you enjoyed reading my favorite books in my quilting library.
NOTE:: This post contains affiliate links. Please read my legal information page for more info. I received a free copy in some cases for review but all opinions are my own.