Reviewed by Gillian Cooper
American Quilter’s Society $21.95
ISBN 1-57432-901-4 (s/b 96 pages)
Each year, the Museum of the American Quilter’s Society holds a competition New Quilts from an Old Favorite. The ‘Old Favorite’ is a traditional quilt block and quilters are challenged to reinterpret it in a new way. The winning entries and the other finalists are brought together into a book as well as into an exhibition that travels across North America. The 2006 competition had the Dresden Plate block as its starting point. This is a block which has rather old fashioned connotations for me and would not count as a favourite. However, the beautiful colour photos of the 18 chosen quilts changed my views on the block as the quilts were breathtaking in the variety of design, colour and quilting used. One even had a monkey on it. The quilts are made more satisfying due to minimum size requirement of 50in x 50in, so real skill and dedication is required to make them. The book does not give you instructions on how to copy the winning quilts, but is rather a good design source, giving you the pattern pieces and interviews with each of the quilters, who explain their inspiration and working processes. It is a great way to pick up ideas for improving your own quilts.