Monday, April 27, 2009

What a Show!

There aren't enough "wows!" to describe the 25th Anniversary Celebration in Paducah last week. From the incredible Best of Show quilt by Mariya Waters of Melbourne, Australia to the excellent entertainment by Ricky Tims, Eleanor Burns, Nancy Zieman and Helen Squire and the hundreds of vendors offering amazing fabrics and helpful tools, it was a fabulous week. Another special event was the Book Fair; 17 authors were on hand to sign their books, and a fun time was had by all.

An AQS show is always a good time to discuss potential book projects, so plan now to bring your ideas and proposals to Knoxville, July 22 - 25 or Des Moines, October 28-31. Of course you can send a completed proposal and one or two representative completed quilts to AQS any time: Attention, Andi Reynolds, Executive Book Editor, 5801 Kentucky Dam Road, Paducah, KY 42003. We look forward to reviewing your fresh, creative approach to quilting today!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Collectible Books

The annual AQS Catalogue of Show Quilts is here! Whether you attend the 2009 25th anniversary show in Paducah or not, this highly collectible book showcases all of this year's entires in a beautifully formatted presentation. The quilts are shown by contest category with the entry number, quilt title, quilt size, maker's name and maker's location. True keepsakes, these books document the trend in today's quilting world. AQS item #7931.

Another gem of a book is Collection of The National Quilt Museum. Dedicated to the founders of the American Quilter's Society, Bill and Meredith Schroeder, it summarizes the history of the quilt collection that is the nucleus of the museum. Each quilt is shown with a statement from the artist or a summation of their work, to give the reader insight into how these beautiful works of art came to be. Although some of the museum's collection quilts are always on display and rotated, this book is the definitive catalogue and a real photo essay on how quilting has evolved since the early 1980s. A limited print run makes this a book to buy quickly and keep for posterity. AQS item #7933.

Old and New

AQS's two most recent books span quilting's timeline in America from the very old to the latest rage.

A Baltimore Album: 25 Applique Patterns by Marsha D. Radtke came about serendipitously. Marsha discovered a Baltimore Album quilt in the attic of the rural Maryland parsonage she shared with her husband. On close examination, she realized there were two inked names on the quilt, and they were locally common names. A certified quilt appraiser dated the quilt as circa 1850! This means Marsha found a truly original Baltimore Album quilt in the area this style was created and made popular.

When the old beauty began to deteriorate, she decided to replicate the quilt. Both new and old quilts are shown in the book. The original had 25 blocks, one of which was a duplicate pattern. The color palette is red, green, and gold -- typical of the era. Just as the work on the original was very fine, so is Marsha's rendition.

Baltimore Album and applique lovers will want this book as a library of genuine, dated patterns created near the source of this ever-popular applique style. Ask for AQS item #7927 and enjoy creating a piece of history yourself!

And as time has gone by, quilters now create masterpieces using machines. To help your quilts stand out anywhere, Nan Moore wrote Machine Freehand Patterns. Every one of the 95 pages has one or more machine patterns drawn freehand. You can follow these exactly, shrink them or enlarge them, alter them or use them as inspiration to create your own freehand quilting designs.

Nan provides a very basic guide to using continuous motion patterns - it's almost entirely visual, so if you've wanted to try machine quilting, this could be the very book you're looking for. Her book is AQS item #8022.