Book Review Tuesday: Brave New Quilts

The first book review was successful. Thank you to all who commented and stopped by. This is so much fun, reading the books I bought and actually trying projects from the book. That alone is fantastic, otherwise they may have just gathered dust.

I am structuring these posts with a review section, project section and of course the give-away at the end :-). On to this week’s review….



Title: “Brave New Quilts” – 12 Projects Inspired by 20th-Century Art
Author: Kathreen Ricketson
Publisher: C&T Publishing/Stash Books
ISBN:  978-1-60705-719-2

I enjoyed this book, as it bought my two “art” worlds together – quilting and fine arts. The book covers each of the major art movements within the Chapters well, providing good descriptions of key techniques. These techniques were then tied to the focus quilting project. This made the book very unique.

This book provides an essential guide to quilt designing, which is seldom covered in the other books I have read. The introduction covers how to drive your idea to reality with color choices, fabric choices, the need for concept books, mood boards, design boards and design tools. This section was my favorite part of the book and resonated with me.

Each Chapter has 3 projects that focuses on lines, color, motifs and text. I have a few favorite designs that stood out to me in the book.

  • Use of Lines
    • Weave (a Bauhaus project) – is definitely my favorite project in this book. The simplicity is fantastic and could be used as a back or front of a quilt. NOTE: this is the quilt featured on the front cover.
    • Rhythm (An Art Deco/Cubist project) – The possibilities with this quilt is endless. I used this as my featured project below.
  • Use of Color
    • Sublime Triangle (An Abstract Expressionism project) – This project resonated as its more about color and playing with color design to make the quilt stand out.
  • Use of Motif
    • Seedpod (Midcentury Modern Project) – I loved the use of negative space, the color combinations and how the motif was used in this quilt. I will definitely be adding this as a quilt to make in future.
  • Use of Text
    • I liked the overall idea of the quilts but I would eliminate the use of text.

Each project has great design details, such as color choices to get an alternate aesthetic.

The drawback for this book was the appeal of the projects (4 out of 12). I would have liked to be more drawn in by the projects.

My rating out of 5 is:
images-9 images-8images-7


The project I chose for this review was “Rhythm”. I was inspired by 3 things:

  1. The mix of art deco and cubism techniques in this project.
  2. The new Kona colors – I used a mix of the Summer Skinny Stripes and yardage
  3. Martha Stewart Project: Framed Quilt Squaresmd106711_0111_frames_v2_036_vert

The design suggests using a paper guide for triangular lined block. Each line of fabric is added using improvisational techniques, which typically I thoroughly enjoy.  This time, I actually was surprised to feel a little uncomfortable with it. I chose to use the paper guide as a paper piecing template which embraced the art deco movement.


The quilting was where I could embrace more of the irregular and improvisational techniques influenced by the cubism movement. I framed the finished quilt block, which will be upcoming Christmas presents.


My soon to be finished blocks are again using an alternative color combination from the new Kona colors. These will also be quilted and framed.



One brand new copy of this book will be given away next Tuesday. Also, in spirit of the fine arts theme, Dot, a fat quarter of Lush Uptown, Paint by Numbers will be included (see below). All you need to do is leave a comment on which 20th century art movement would you most relate to. There is a second chance to win if you are a follower, just leave a second comment indicating you follow. A winner will be chosen at random and posted next Tuesday around 8 pm.


Next Book Review: “Modern Bee”.
Upcoming books will include: 500 quilt blocks, Quilting Happiness, Modern One-Block Quilts, Urban Views.

A disclaimer, all reviews and opinions of the books reviewed will be mine, unless otherwise stated. Please note, I may not respond to all comments due to volume and bandwidth.

Linking up with Lee over at Freshly Pieced for WiP Wednesday.

32 thoughts on “Book Review Tuesday: Brave New Quilts

  1. Anya King

    1. I have to admit I have been really taken by the idea of mixing other art movements with quilt design. Thank you for the review. I find that books that have really great information don’t always have great projects, so that isn’t a huge surprise. I may still pick it up though, since I love the art aspect of the book.

  2. buntyw

    7. I love the idea of framing blocks too – and a single block can be such a strong statement!
    I don’t know this book at all but I enjoyed your honest review!

  3. LINDA


  4. Amy C

    11. I love your framed piece – the quilting is the perfect compliment to it! If I received that for a Christmas present I would love the person forever!

  5. Laura C

    15. !!!!!! Must start martha stewart framed quilt block project asap. These blocks are so bright and look amazing! (And they are a smarter cleaner way of doing what I was trying to do with those wonky chevron blocks–these less wonky and I love them!) You were smart to choose bright solids and YOU QUILTED BEFORE FRAMING which I love. What a wonderful project, Michelle!

    Thank you also for the book review! I hope to look at a copy of this from the library soon.

    16. I follow

  6. Jen

    20. What a cool idea. I really like the colors you choose for the paper piecing, they are so bright and cheery. I’m sure they will be very well received come Christmas time 🙂

  7. The Sassy Quilter

    24. I love framed blocks! Yours looks great too. Such a statement.
    25. Follow on bloglovin. Thanks for the giveaway.

  8. clumsykristel

    27. You know, I don’t know a whole lot about modern art. I mean, deco, I recognize, but otherwise… I don’t even know!

    I’ve been waiting to borrow this book from the library, but they seem not to have it in stock yet. (They’re obviously planning to have it available, since I’m on the wait list and they don’t make wait lists for books they don’t intend to stock, but I don’t have a number on the wait list, which tells me the book isn’t actually available yet.)

    Anyway, I love the framed blocks you created – how beautiful is that?

    28. I follow.

  9. Allison C

    29. I relate most with Pop art. I like the idea of having advertisement and comics on my walls and I love the use of a lot of color.

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