Thursday, December 19, 2013

Book Review: Quilting Wide Open Spaces by Judi Madsen

Available from Amazon here
Quilting Wide-Open Spaces by Madsen
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I have drool all over my computer keyboard, and it is all Judi Madsen's fault. I have been following her blog, Green Fairy Quilts, for about a year now, and I continue to be mesmerized by her approach to machine quilting -- her uncanny ability to create the perfect quilting designs to complement any style of pieced or appliqued quilt that comes her way. I tell myself that, one day when my piecing and applique skills get good enough, maybe I could hire Judi to work her magic on one of my own quilts, but in the meantime I am delighted to finally have been able to purchase this book. Judi walks readers through her creative and technical process with clarity and a fresh, conversational voice, like she's standing right next to your sewing machine, cheering you on. Her enthusiasm and warm personality comes across on every page -- a breath of fresh air. When she breaks down her spectacular quilting step-by-step, anything seems possible -- and I haven't even looked at the additional resources on the included CD yet. I usually don't make the projects in quilting books, just use them as references, but the "wide open spaces" concept is very appealing to me. I spent hours practicing free-motion quilting on fat quarter "practice" quilt sandwiches throughout most of last year, and have nothing to show for that but a pile of samples. Judi's projects are a logical next step in the quilting journey, moving on to simple pieced quilt tops with plenty of "wide open spaces" just waiting for quilty goodness. To whet your appetite, check out Judi's blog post here where she shows sneak peaks of some of the projects in this book. 

I hope Judi writes more books in the future. I would especially love to see a book with before and after photos of her quilts, or possibly several identical quilt tops with totally different quilting designs. Often when viewing a finished quilt with absolutely spectacular quilting, perfectly suited to the quilt, those quilting designs seem like the only possible quilting. I think it's hard for many beginners, myself included, to envision the different quilting possibilities when we're staring at the wilderness of a freshly-finished quilt top and trying to decide what to do with it.

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1 comment:

Queenie Believe said...

Judi is an amazing quilter. I love Love LOVE her book... total drool city! I like that she emphasizes that you have to practice FMQ to get better and that it is a process but do-able.
Have a great day.
Always, Queenie