English Paper Piecing: Fresh New Quilts from Bloom Creek
By Vicki Bellino
Gifted by Martingale & Co.
Reviewed by Jessica Nichols, Editor of FaveQuilts.com
English Paper Piecing: Fresh New Quilts from Bloom Creek is a wonderful introduction to the art of English paper piecing. Author and designer Vicki Bellino includes 12 truly beautiful quilt patterns that showcase the versatility of the technique. This book goes far beyond the traditional honeycomb hexagon patterns and grandmother's flower garden motifs. Combining applique, machine piecing, and English paper piecing, Bellino invites readers to discover and share the joy of hand piecing!
If you thought English paper piecing was about stitching endless hexagons together, this book open your eyes to the possibilities of this piecing method. Bellino includes quilt patterns for not only hexagons, but also diamonds, Dresden plate segments (and their chrysanthemum-petal cousins), and pentagons. She shows plenty of ways the shapes can be combined to create beautiful design motifs. From stars to flowers and everything in between, Bellino demonstrates how English paper piecing is used to create unusual piecework and applique.
English Paper Piecing: Fresh New QUilts from Bloom Creek is divided into three chapters of patterns, with each chapter characterized by the shapes that are used in the pattern. The Hexagons chapter, which may be the most intriguing to quilters who are just beginning to explore English paper piecing, includes three patterns. The first, Suitable for Framing, shows how hexagon flowers can be used not as a central design motif, but as a border to show off swaths of attractive fabric. In the Black and Red and Gold All Over quilt and the Spinagons quilts, Bellino again turns the Grandmother's Flower Garden pattern on its head, showing how the classic layout can be altered to create more interesting designs.
Bellino is most prolific in the Diamonds chapter, where she plays with star flowers (rings of diamonds with applique centers), combining them with elements like applique stems and log cabin blocks to make gorgeous quilts. She also shows how diamonds can be used in more geometric patterns as well, designing quilts that contrast nicely with her more floral patterns and show her versatility as a designer. The final chapter, a sampling of Dresden plate and pentagon patterns, brings readers bright, playful patterns that every quilter will want to make.
Whether you're a devoted paper piecer or completely new to the technique, English Paper Piecing: Fresh New Quilts from Bloom Creek provides creative and unique new patterns that will deepen your appreciation for this time-honored piecing method.