BIRDS IN THE AIR
*GEOMETRIC     
Geometric Quilt Design Books
& Recommended Related Collections

Though many of these books are out of print,
all are still (amazingly) available, new or used, try —
Alibris | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Strand
(many historical books include interesting bibliographies)
(see links below for free graphics software and online
Texture Sources for faux fabric fills)

« INDEX for ANTIQUE GEOMETRIC QUILT DESIGNS
Illustration (Top): BIRDS IN THE AIR
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Spacious & Diverse Compendiums
(arranged by date)
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• THE QUILTER'S ALBUM OF PATCHWORK PATTERNS by Jinny Beyer (2009)
(4,050 pieced geometric blocks, fabric filled illustrations, grid sizes, sources, plastic graphing templates — historical essays, colorful, enjoyable, exquisite)

• 5,500 QUILT BLOCK DESIGNS, by Maggie Malone (2005)
(bright, bold, solid color graphics, highly recommended)

700 TRADITIONAL PATCHWORK PATTERNS, CD-ROM and Book (2004)
(Mac / PC, with Dover Electronic Clip Art, ed. by Susan Mills) (Google PREVIEW)

Carrie Hall Blocks

• CARRIE HALL BLOCKS, by Bettina Havig (1999) (also EXHIBIT) (opens new window)
(photos of over 850 historical blocks, created 1900-1938, Spencer Museum of Art)
Provides an excellent source for a wide variety of templates for designs listed in the section called "Patterned Blocks" (see p. 83 and following), and which can then be reassembled to create innumerable designs, beyond those illustrated.

Barbara Brackman's Encyclopedia of Pieced Quilt Designs

• ENCYCLOPEDIA OF PIECED QUILT PATTERNS, by Barbara Brackman (1984 / 1993)
(more than 4,200 illustrations, early sources, cross-references, invaluable)
(also available as PC BLOCKBASE software)

• 849 TRADITIONAL PATCHWORK PATTERNS by Susan Winter Mills (1980 / 1989)
(pictorial handbook, excellent graphics, geometric arrangement) (Google PREVIEW)

• THE COLLECTOR'S DICTIONARY OF QUILT NAMES AND PATTERNS (1980 / 1988)
(by Yvonne M. Khin, 2,400 blocks, large graphics, dates/sources — "A must for collectors of American quilts...inspiration for anyone working with quilts...gold mine for designers" — The Fashion Newsletter)

• THE NEW QUILTING AND PATCHWORK DICTIONARY, by Rhoda Ochser Goldberg (1988)
(alphabetical arrangement, all blocks drafted on full grids, 1,745 illustrations)

• THE QUILT I.D. BOOK by Judy Rehmel (1986)
(4,000 illustrated and indexed patterns, great guide to identify a design)

• 500 FULL-SIZE PATCHWORK PATTERNS by Maggie Malone (1985)
(historical, large graphics, block sizes, paper templates for tracing, yardage)

• 1001 PATCHWORK DESIGNS by Maggie Malone (1982)
(drafted on piecing grids, large graphics, interesting selection, well organized, includes interesting pre-1981 bibliography)

The Perfect Patchwork Primer by Beth Gutcheon

• THE PERFECT PATCHWORK PRIMER by Beth Gutcheon (1973)
(how to create traditional or your own designs, 472 illustrations, quilt history, best fabrics for patchwork, samples of Op-Art as quilt designs, includes a philosophy of freedom and self-reliance, whether in quilt-making or designing, highly recommended)
A Precious Few on Special Topics & Related
(books & online articles/exhibits/collections by latest)
___ ___ ___


• COLOR MOVES: ART AND FASHION BY SONIA DELAUNAY (2011)
("Swatches Illuminate a Painter’s Other Art," by Roberta Smith) (EXHIBIT)
(early 20th c. geometric painting and textiles, NY Times Review)

• SMITHSONIAN NATIONAL QUILT COLLECTION (Ongoing) (ONLINE)
(at the National Museum of American History, antique quilts)

• INTERNATIONAL QUILT STUDY CENTER (IQSC) (Ongoing) (EXHIBIT)
(The International Quilt Study Center & Museum houses the largest publicly held quilt collection in the world. The 3500+ items date from the early 1700s to the present & ongoing, see also ELEGANT GEOMETRY, 2011)

• CRAZY QUILTS: by Cindy Brick, Foreward by Nancy Kirk (2011)
(history, techniques, embroidery motifs)

• THE STANDARD BOOK OF QUILT MAKING AND COLLECTING, by Marguerite Ickis (2010)
(1949/59 reprint, 160 most famous geometric designs, p.223ff) (Google PREVIEW)

• JAPANESE TAUPE QUILTS by Susan Briscoe (2010)
(125 block designs in elegant and neutral colors)

• BETTER TOGETHER: TWO BLOCK DESIGNS FOR DYNAMIC QUILTS, Karen Sievert (2010)
(geometric designs for 2 different blocks sharing one grid, 10 quilt projects)
Bridget Riley, Fragment 5
• BRIDGET RILEY / COMPLETE PRINTS (2010)
(A founder of Op Art and a modern master of color and geometric abstraction)

Bridget Riley, Pause

• THE EYE'S MIND: BRIDGET RILEY (2009)
(Collected writings on perception, geometrics and op art, 1965-2008)

• AMISH ABSTRACTIONS (Collection of Faith & Stephen Brown), Essays by Janneken Smucker, Robert Shaw, Joe Cunningham (2009) — "At first glance, Amish quilts may appear curiously similar to works by the great abstract artists of the twentieth century. [...] Closer examination reveals that the principles of the Amish faith — simplicity, humility, discipline, and community — are masterfully stitched into each design. Colorful and dynamic, the remarkable quilts radiate the harmony and dignity of Amish life while providing a window onto the history of American art and textile traditions."

• DOROTHEA ROCKBURNE: GEO/METRIC (2009) (online EXHIBIT)
(aquatinted, geometrically folded paper book, Museum of Modern Art, NYC)

Gunta Stolzl
Gunta Stölzl (b. 1897)

• GUNTA STÖLZL: BAUHAUS MASTER by Monika Stadler (2009)
(Illustrates 100+ key works, Museum of Modern Art Catalogue) (Google PREVIEW)

• BAUHAUS WOMEN by Ulricke Müller (2009)
(art, handicraft, design, with special section on Women Artist Weavers)

Nancy Cabot Photo
• QUILT HISTORY STORIES: LORETTA LEITNER RISING (NANCY CABOT) (2008)
by Susan Wildemuth, article on the Chicago Tribule author Nancy Cabot (ONLINE)

• JAPANESE QUILT BLOCKS TO MIX AND MATCH by Susan Briscoe (2007)
(125 patchwork, appliqué & sashiko designs, thumbnails index) (Google PREVIEW)

• TESSELLATION QUILTS by Christine Porter (2006)
(sensational designs from interlocking patterns) (Google PREVIEW)

• TRADITIONAL QUILTS WITH A TWIST by Maggie Ball (2006)
(exciting new looks for your favorite patterns)

• WOMEN OF DESIGN: QUILTS IN THE NEWSPAPER by Barbara Brackman (2004)
(designs from the Kansas City Star and other regional newspapers, 1928 - 1961)

IT WAS BLUE AND GREEN

• [Abstraction in] GEORGIA O'KEEFFE (1887–1986) by Lisa Messinger (2004)
(Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History, The Metropolitan Museum of Art. — "Remarkably, she remained independent from shifting art trends and stayed true to her own vision, which was based on finding the essential, abstract forms in nature.") (ONLINE)

• GEOMETRIC ABSTRACTION (IN ART) (online ESSAY)
(Heilbrunn Art History Timeline, hosted by the Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC )

• DESIGN DYNAMICS OF LOG CABIN QUILTS, Curator Judy Schwender (2004)
(online IQSCM EXHIBIT with downloadable, beautifully illustrated PDF)

Quilted Diamonds, by Linda Franz

• QUILTED DIAMONDS: JANE AUSTEN, JANE STICKLE & FRIENDS, by Linda Franz (2002)
(historical diamond patchwork, numerous diagrams, step by step instructions)

• THE GENESIS AND GEOMETRY OF THE LABYRINTH, by Patrick Conty (2002)
(inspires a philosophy of geometry as universal mystic path, diverse illustrations)

• DESIGNING TESSELLATIONS, by Jinny Beyer (1999)
(the secrets of interlocking patterns, fascinating, kaleidoscopic)

• 520 QUICK AND EASY PATCHWORK DESIGNS, by Kei Kobayashi (1993)
(the amazing paper-folding method for endless variations)

• 65 DRUNKARD'S PATH QUILT DESIGNS, by Pepper Cory (1991/1998)
(makes these more difficult designs easy and fun) (Google PREVIEW)

• QUILTS! QUILTS! QUILTS! by Diana McClure & Laura Nownes (1998)
(quiltmaking guide, 30 designs, step-by-step patterns)

• OPTICAL ILLUSIONS FOR QUILTERS, by Karen Combs (1997)
(unique, creative, inspiring, with bibliography)

• QUILTS FROM THE CIVIL WAR: by Barbara Brackman (1997)
(nine quilt projects, historic notes, diary entries) (Google PREVIEW)

• DEAR JANE, by Brenda Papadakis (1996)
(the 225 patterns from the 1863 Jane A. Stickle quilt, beautiful, inventive, magical)

Women's Work by Sigrid Wortmann Weitge

• WOMEN'S WORK by Sigrid Wortmann Weltge (1993)
(textile art from the Bauhaus, Cubist and geometric patterning)

• OLD PATCHWORK QUILTS AND THE WOMEN WHO MADE THEM by Ruth E. Finley
(1929 / 1992 reprint with intro by Barbara Brackman, patchwork, designs, photos)

• CLASSIC QUILTS by Ami Simms (1991)
Patchwork Designs from Ancient Rome (2nd-4th c. AD), templates, photos, drawings

• DRUNKARD'S PATH by Anita Murphy (1991)
(an easy, no pins technique, 18 designs, paper templates, piecing instructions)

• TEXTILE DESIGNS: TWO HUNDRED YEARS OF EUROPEAN & AMERICAN PATTERNS
(1991, by Susan Meller, includes 1800+ color illustrations, fabrics) organized by
motif, style, color, layout, and period

ABSTRACT DESIGN IN AMERICAN QUILTS by Jonathon Holstein

• ABSTRACT DESIGN IN AMERICAN QUILTS by Jonathon Holstein (1991)
("The exhibition Abstract Design in American Quilts opened at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City in July 1971, and quilting has not been the same since. From this universally acknowledged seminal event dates the study of quilting as a serious art form and the tremendously important international cross-fertilization among art historians, textile scholars, and the artist-craftspeople who work in quilts.") (Book cover: wool quilt constructed entirely of NINE PATCH blocks, dated ca. 1890, New Jersey, Holstein's collection.)

• SONIA DELAUNAY PATTERNS AND DESIGNS by Sonia Delaunay (1989)
(c.1930, Dover reprint, Delaunay's magnificent geometric abstractions) (SAMPLES)

• CLUES IN THE CALICO by Barbara Brackman (1989)
(a guide to indentifying & dating antique quilts, fascinating, great illustrations)

• DESIGNER'S GUIDE TO COLOR (VOL 3) by Jeanne Allen (1986)
(full color, glossy paperback of 942 "modern" color combinations (CMYK%), excellent)

• QUILT PATTERNS FOR THE COLLECTOR, by L. K. Meeker (1979)
(with keys for drafting, interesting bibliography, self-published, spiralbound)

• JAPANESE DESIGN THROUGH TEXTILE PATTERNS, by Frances Blakemore (1978)
(fascinating collection of geometric and pictorial stencil patterns in Japanese kimonos)

• CLASSIC AMERICAN PATCHWORK QUILT PATTERNS by Maggie Malone (1977)
(110 large, lovely, inspirational drawings, with pattern templates, superb)

• QUILT DESIGN WORKBOOK by Beth Gutcheon (1976)
(Gutcheon's first quilt design publication — on the flyleaf she states the following: "Quilt making means more to me than any other craft for many reasons. First I can do it at home without special equipment. Second, the products of the craft are genuinely useful. Most important, there is no necessary connection between how good a patchwork design is and how hard it is to make. And that means that even the rankest beginner can do work that is not just not rediculous but is really good.")

• THE PIECED QUILT by Jonathon Holstein (1973)
(Extensive essays on historical quilts in connection to the history of fine art and design, with full quilt illustrations — interesting reflections on Amish patterns and their "discordant,"color combinations, but which are now perhaps "more agreeable to contemporary eyes." It is Holstein's opinion that the tradition of intense Amish colors reflects their "gaiety of spirit.")

• FRAMELESS QUILTMAKING FOR BEGINNERS by Jeanne Fadely (1971)
(Self-published introduction, step by step instructiions, with design illustrations, templates)

• MODERN PATCHWORK by Rachel Martens (1970)
(Forty-four exquisite 1920's patterns from the FARM JOURNAL, and with historical introduction: "Patchwork is as old as needles. There is a wall painting in Thebes of an Egyptian sailing boat which appears to have bright colored patchwork sails. Archaeologists have traced mosaic in silk and brocade to ancient China traders. In the MIddle Ages, Crusaders carried banners of "applied work" into battle. Church [wall banners] and vestments were done in patchwork. There was even a reference to a patchwork bedcover in an early French poem. While the early history of patchwork is sketchy, American writers have built a more complete record. We can trace patchwork from the first settlers in New England — the thirty pioneers who brought the techniques and patterns with them to the New World.")

• THE MYSTIC SPIRAL : JOURNEY OF THE SOUL, by Jill Purce (1970)
(geometry as the ultimate journey, profound, colorful fine art illustrations)
 
• THE ROMANCE OF THE PATCHWORK QUILT IN AMERICA
(by Carrie A. Hall and Rose G. Kretsinger, 1935)

• GRANDMOTHER CLARK'S PATCHWORK QUILT DESIGNS: Books 20 & 21 by Barbara Bannister (1930's, reprinted 1973)

• OLD PATCHWORK QUILTS AND THE WOMEN WHO MADE THEM by Ruth E. Finley (1929), (with Introduction by Barbara Brackman, 1992)


Photo: Amazon.com

• OLD FASHIONED QUILTS by Carlie Sexton (1928)
(antique compendium of classic quilt designs, detailed drawings)

• OLD TIME QUILTS by Prudence Penny (Bernice Reddington) (1927)

• EARLY AMERICAN QUILTS by Carlie Sexton (1924)

Full Texts Online
(with downloads)
___ ___ ___
Ruby Short McKim Patchwork Patterns

• 101 PATCHWORK PATTERNS by Ruby Short McKim (1931) (ONLINE)
(Dover reprint 1962, beloved early collection, templates, delightful drawings)



Marie D. Webster

• QUILTS THEIR STORY AND HOW TO MAKE THEM by Marie D. Webster (1915)
(Full quilt photos, excellent essays, history, illustration above: "Star of the East" — Webster is the great ancestress of all modern books on quilt design and quilt making) (ONLINE)

• LADIES ART COMPANY CATALOGUE, St. Louis (1898) (ONLINE)  

Most of the quilt block graphics for this site were created on a Mac (Snow Leopard via Rosetta) with LINEFORM — vector graphics, precision grids, customizable fills, CD available at Amazon.com. And in addition, with GOLDBERG 2.5.1, an invaluable, free image editor by Opus Software (does not work with Mac Lion or higher unfortunately). For a great substitute, and with pixel-editing graphics, texture fills, and color inverts (like the old Mac Superpaint program), try Seashore, available for free download online (highly recommended), and it also has a pdf guide. Last but not least, here's a marvelously useful, free and fun application called COLOR SCHEMES, developed by Paul Young.


For Free Fabric Fills and Seamless Texture Sources (no login needed), see:
22 Free Seamless Vector Pattern Sources!!!!
Free Vector (Wow!!)
Open Clipart, all free
Pixels & Ice Cream (very nice)
Patterrific (and it is!!)
Free Vector Art & Graphics
Ava7 PatternsRGB Free Stock Photos
Backgrounds Patterns Maker
DinPatterns, Free, Seamless, Art Deco
Tartan Background Pattern Generator
AMG Web DesignersStripe Generator
Background LabsVector Open Stock
• Free Premium Vector Patterns
Free Design Hot Resources
Vector TilesAll Free DownloadsGRSites

Oriental Seamless Texture Sources:
Japan Vector Free Art & Graphics
Japonizer / Create Traditional Designs
Shizoo DesignsTraditional Chinese Motifs
Traditional Japanese Pattern Collection
Japanese Patterns: David's Blog

 

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