Though the history of quilting dates back to colonial times in America, it remains a popular pastime even today. Quilters put in a lot of skill and time into their creations, and often regard their creations with sentimental value. Those who quilt as a hobby find it creative, engaging, and stress reducing. Quilters now have more options than ever, thanks to a wide variety of techniques, supplies, and fabric options.
Quilting is also one of the oldest forms of women’s crafting, and as we celebrate Women’s History Month in March, the program Quilting Through the Centuries on March 13th at 7pm, takes a close look at this rich art form.
Join Liberty Hall Museum, a historic house and garden museum located in Union, New Jersey, as we weave together how the history of quilting in the United States provides key insights into the history of women from colonial times to today.
Discover how changing technology altered the popular forms of quilting and how women have used quilting as a way to have their voices heard. Whether utilitarian or artistic, quilts provide clues of what life was like for American women over the past 250 years.
This talk is accompanied by images and videos of quilts and historic quilting techniques as well as actual hand sewn quilts from Liberty Hall’s collection.
Here are some nonfiction books on quilting available with your Livingston Library card to help you begin to or to further explore this enriching art.
Big Stitch Quilting : A Practical Guide To Sewing And Hand Quilting 20 Stunning Projects by Carolyn Forster
Classic & Colorful Patchwork And Appliqué Quilt Patterns by Jim Shore
Create Landscape Quilts : A Step-By-Step Guide To Dynamic People & Places by Meri Henriques Vahl
Everyday Quilting : The Complete Beginner’s Guide by Jennifer Fulton
Modern Quilting : A Contemporary Guide To Quilting By Hand by Julius Arthur
100 Paper Pieced Quilt Blocks : Fun Foundation Pieced Blocks For Happy Sewing edited by Sarah Callard
Quilt As You Go : A Practical Guide To 14 Inspiring Techniques & Projects by Carolyn Forster
Quilting Through The Year : 16 Delightful Designs For Every Season by Sherilyn Mortensen
Quilts To Make In A Weekend : 9 Time-Friendly Designs by Annie’s Quilting
Scrappy Improv Quilting : 22 Mini Quilts To Make With Easy Piecing by Kelly Young
Several magazines on quilting can also be borrowed via Libby.
And here are some engaging novels that feature a quilting theme. (Note: descriptions are taken from the publishers)
The Forgotten Seamstress by Liz Trenow
A moving story of two women tied together by an heirloom despite the decades that separate their times in England. In the early 20th century, Maria knows that, as a shy girl with no family, she’s lucky to have landed in the sewing room of the royal household. Before World War I casts its shadow, she catches the eye of the glamorous and intense Prince of Wales. But her life takes a far darker turn, and soon all she has left is a fantastical story about her time at Buckingham Palace. Decades later, Caroline Meadows discovers a beautiful quilt in her mother’s attic. When she can’t figure out the meaning of the message embroidered into its lining, she embarks on a quest to reveal its mystery, a puzzle that only seems to grow more important to her own heart. As Caroline pieces together the secret history of the quilt, she comes closer and closer to the truth about Maria.
The Goodbye Quilt by Susan Wiggs
As her only child Molly readies for college, local fabric shop owner Linda Davis shares one last adventure with her daughter — a cross-country road trip to move Molly into her dorm. As they make their way through the heart of the country, Linda pieces together the scraps that make up Molly’s young life.
Her Amish Wedding Quilt by Winnie Griggs
Spirited, forthright, impulsive — everyone told Greta Eicher she’d have to change her ways if she ever hoped to marry. Then her best friend Calvin, the man she thought she would wed, chooses another woman. Now Greta’s wondering if the others were right all along. Her dreams dashed, she pours her energy into crafting beautiful quilts at her shop and helping widower Noah Stoll care for his adorable young children.
Hope On The Inside by Marie Bostwick
Hope Carpenter finds new purpose in a new phase of life when her husband’s forced retirement strains both their savings and their marriage. Seeking inspiration and a financial boost, Hope gets a job teaching crafts to inmates at a local women’s prison with surprising results. Embarking on an ambitious quilting project, Hope and her students begin to bond. Together, piece by piece, they learn to defy expectations–their own and others’–and to see that it’s never too late to stitch together a life that, even in its imperfections, is both surprising and beautiful.
Knot In My Backyard by Mary Marks
When she stumbles over the body of baseball coach Dax Martin, middle-age divorcee Martha Ross and her fellow quilters must piece together the clues to figure out who in their neighborhood wanted the coach benched permanently.
A Quilt For Christmas : A Christmas Novella by Melody Carlson
Widowed and recently relocated, Vera Swanson is lonely in her condo-for-one–until little Fiona Albright knocks on her door needing help. With her mother seriously ill and her father out of town, Fiona enlists Vera’s help, and when she finds out her new neighbor is a quilter, she has a special request–a Christmas quilt for Mama. Vera will have to get a ragtag group of women together in order to fulfill the request. Between free-spirited artist Tasha, chatty empty nester Beverly, retired therapist Eleanor, and herself, Vera has hopes that Christmas for the Albright family will be merry, after all–and she may find herself a new family of friends along the way.
The Trouble With Scotland : A Kilts And Quilts Novel by Patience Griffin
The quilting ladies of the Scottish village of Gandiegow are known to piece together more than just fabric . . .Life isn’t going as planned and Sadie Middleton is rethinking her whole future. Thankfully one thing is staying the same- She’s able to share her love of quilting with her grandmother Gigi. The two of them enter a contest and win an all-expenses-paid trip to the Kilts and Quilts retreat in the Scottish Highlands. But their victory turns hollow when Gigi passes away before they can go. Sadie is grief-stricken, but her brother convinces her to take the trip to Gandiegow anyway. There she meets a charming circle of quilters who remind her of her grandmother-and Ross Armstrong, a handsome fisherman who brings a smile to her face.
— Archana Chiplunkar, Adult Services & Acquisitions Librarian