Friday, 29 March 2013

Book Review Friday- "Ultimate Quilting Bible: A Complete Reference with Step-by-step Techniques" by Marie Clayton

I have accumulated a few books on my progression from one of life’s less creative folk, to a lass who just loves to be tinkering at… anything! At any given time I may be; knitting on my sofa, planting a few herbs, brewing blackberry wine, sewing a dress or foraging for wild garlic. The more you make, the more you want to create and the more I buy books.
I bought this book in anticipation of making quilts more regularly than what I actually have done. Only now have I begun to make a quilt, the “Rainbow Crayon Quilt” is shown in the book under the term “Triangle Squares”

I scrupulously research my book purchases and thought that I would write a review every week to help with the decision of what book to buy on what topic. The books that I am reviewing have been purchased with my own money and bought because I wanted them, unless otherwise stated.

So, to the review.

  • ·     Hardback
  • ·     304 pages
  • ·     Published by: Collins & Brown (1 July 2009)

Very helpful instructions on how to save time and understand the quilting process; my particular interest is the patchwork quilt, which has a 92 page chapter to educate and whet the appetite. Interestingly enough, the first ever quilt that I am making is actually the first demonstrated project of the “Pieced Quilt” chapter. Intuitively, I have chosen to make the easiest and more straightforward pieced quilt. Good. At the very least, I am starting as I mean to go on and develop my quilting skills gradually instead of jumping in at the deep and being a ropey and mediocre quilter.

Chapters are set logically into:
1. Introduction
2. Getting Started
3. Quilt making Basics
4. Whole cloth and stripy quilts
5. Pieced Quilts
6. Appliqued Quilts
7. Embellished Quilts
8. Folded Quilts
9. Advanced Techniques
Then… Glossary of Terms, Resources, Index and Acknowledgements.


Artwork wise, it’s beautiful. Aspirational, yet achievable in the setting, I particularly like how it demonstrated how a quilt can be a modern addition to a home and with the right planning- can look amazing in the home.


VERY clear. Quilting is not a mythical and complex process. It requires tools, planning, fabric and imagination. In no way does this book lead you into thinking that you can’t do this. You can! The pictures in the instructions and diagrams and the end results are beautifully pictured leading to the thought process of… “I can do that…”
If you have decided on starting a project, there are templates that you can photocopy and use. Included are hand-quilting sewing templates and also pieced quilt templates like a log cabin design. Very helpful and can be enlarged using a photocopier to your desired size.

Good Points:
  • ·         Beautiful pictures
  • ·         Logical in layout
  • ·         Templates to photocopy

Bad Points
  • ·         Not for an utter novice, if you have never wound on a bobbin before… this is not the book for you. It requires basic sewing knowledge
  • ·         No ‘voice’ from the author. I don’t see this as a bad point; but some people will. I do believe that this will put some people off in our ‘craft community’. We like to chat, to share and to express ourselves. I don’t ‘hear’ the author’s voice as I read through this book; she is very clinical with her explanations.

In conclusion, I do think this book is lovely. If you are interested in owning a book to compliment your quilting journey, this is for you.  




  1. At the end of last year SewRuth ( nominated my blog for a blogger award. It has taken me a while to pass on the accolades, but I'm delighted to let you know that I've nominated your blog in my list of nominees. Please head on over to Sally Sews Something ( to pick up your award.... and thanks for all the inspiration! :)

  2. There's nothing quite like curling up on the sofa with a cuppa and a creative book of sorts. Just need more hours in the day to make all the lovely things inside them!


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