Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Denyse Schmidt Quilts Book Review

Lately I've been digging into the book Denyse Schmidt Quilts, and loving it. When I bought it, I read it cover to cover. Actually, I bought it right after I had seen the movie "Julie and Julia" and I wondered if I should make every project in Denyse's book the way Julie in the movie made every recipe in Julia Child's cookbook. The reality of how much time that would take eventually dawned on me, so I abandoned that idea, but I have made a couple projects from the book.

At first, I expected the book to give me some insight into Denyse's creative process and explain how to improvise patchwork projects the way she does, but it's actually a book of projects with pattern pieces that when sewn together, look like you've improvised a free-form patchwork piece. Being such a newbie to quilts and patchwork, this method is probably a good thing for me. It's like someone holding my hand while I get use to the construction methods. Her ideas are cute, modern and very doable.

Her scarf pattern uses a foundation piecing method. The strips of wool and silk are successfully sewn to a muslin foundation fabric until you have the right dimensions, then square it up and stitch it a soft wool lining. It was quick and I love the look. Our weather has turned cold the last few days, so it was done just in time to be put to use!

I made this fun apron for a housewarming present for my niece. She loves vintage things and all the fabrics I used came from a pile of old fabrics I bought at a garage sale last summer. It's a very easy pattern with a wonky log cabin block pocket. I'd love to make an entire log cabin quilt some day. But in the meantime, these small projects are fast and satisfying. The pom pom fringe is a fun sassy addition. I also whipped up a couple pot holders to match using my own design. The thing I like about these is the pocket on one side. With my hand inside the pocket, I feel like a have more control when grabbing something out of the oven.

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