Book Review : 1000 BLOCKS by Quilter Marker Magazines

1000a-BLOCKS -2090

1000 BLOCKS by Quilt Maker Magazine  is a collection of the first 10 issues of their block collection.  It is organized similar to the way the magazines had been organized from the beginning:  Applique, Foundation Pieced, Mixed Techniques ( fused, raw edge, hand sewn applique on pieced blocks, partial seaming, stitch and flip, pieced then slash and sew back together, foundation and standard piecing in the same block) and Pieced blocks.  What I really like about this book is the patterns are on a cD for the templates and many of the patterns. 


This book was great for me because I missed several of the issues that were sold out at my LQS when I went to buy them.  Since I now have this book I can give the magazines away to friends without guilt. 


The blocks in this book was sent in by both nationally known quilt divas and regular quilters who wanted to design blocks and quilts.  What I did notice when you looked at all the blocks the quality of the block designs greatly improved.  They were true designs and not rehashes of traditional blocks.  When a traditional block was submitted I disliked they did not use the original names but renamed the block.  I feel that dishonored previous designers and quilters.


One thing I did not like was how some of the blocks were dependent on the use of specific fabrics often no longer available.  These blocks can be made using other focus fabrics of the same scale, but I usually do not have suitable fabric.


I liked expansion of the block idea as there are magazines depicting  quilts made from the blocks.  (Only some of these quilts are in this book as illustrations.)  I always liked seeing the quilts made with the blocks as many of the quilts have secondary patterns.  I wanted to see more illustrations of the quilt blocks but that would make for a very fat book costing a lot more.  I have a feeling I will be re- drafting some of these blocks in EQ7 to see what the quilts look like.   I am hoping Quiltmaker and EQ7 (or another drafting software company) will publish these patterns similar to BLOCK BASE.  It would make it so much easier to make quilts.


The links to blogs and websites are noted when available this allowed me to add a lot of new blogs to my Feedly blog reader.  I see fun and quilts in my future when insomnia strikes.  I liked the designer index that is included in the book as it showed which designers submitted blocks over and over again.


I would like QUILTMAKER magazine should sponsor a challenge to quilters across the country to make quilts (crib, baby, child size)  with the block designs in this book.  These quilts could be exhibited in the AQS shows then donated the quilts to LINUS or various children hospitals and charities.  QUILTMAKER of course could publish an issue of the challenge entrants.


One thing that had me concerned as many of the pictures looked like an EQ7 rendering rather than a picture of an actual block.  This might be due to the fact many of the blocks were made in solid fabrics.  Pictures of the blocks proves someone actually made the block.  EQ7 renderings is great for designing but can the block be sewn as designed?  I know in the past when I tried my hand at designing I found there were times the block could not be sewn.


  The blocks in the book are all sized to 12 inch finished blocks so a sampler quilt can be made.  Or the blocks can be made in multiples and placed in a quilt top of your choice.  Examples of settings and yardages is included in the book.   


  I will still recommend this book to my friends.  I think it offers a lot for the cost and I love my encyclopedia of quilt block books since they provide inspiration and potential. 


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