Crazy Quilts: History - Techniques - Embroidery Motifs

Crazy Quilts: History - Techniques - Embroidery Motifs

NOOK BookCRAFTS & HOBBIES / Quilts & Quilting (eBook - CRAFTS & HOBBIES / Quilts & Quilting)

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Crazy Quilts: History - Techniques - Embroidery Motifs by Cindy Brick, Nancy Kirk

"Here's your chance to get up close and personal with an amazing collections of crazies!" - Quilter's Newsletter Magazine.Made from the finest silks, satins, and velvets and stitched together with elaborate embroidery, the crazy quilt is a testament to quilters’ rich imagination and artistry. This beautiful book traces the bewitching history of “Crazies” from their earliest origins to the present day. Distinguished quilting teacher and appraiser Cindy Brick follows the crazy quilt from colonial times, the Civil War, the Victorian era, and through today, decoding the mystery and meaning of these curious quilts.

Also included is a detailed how-to section on constructing crazy quilts. Brick offers methods for planning, piecing, and embroidering or embellishing your quilt, and gives numerous helpful tips that only an expert could provide.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781610600057
Publisher: Voyageur Press
Publication date: 03/15/2011
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 1,024,687
File size: 53 MB
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About the Author

Cindy Brick travels the world teaching quilting and quilt history. A former editor for Quilter's Newsletter, she is also an American Quilter's Society certified textiles appraiser and professional quilt restorer. She has written hundreds of magazine articles and books, includingThe Stitcher’s Language of Flowers. She is the “Old Things Considered” columnist for McCall’s Vintage Quilts and has appeared in TV and online specials, including Simply Quilts and The Quilt Show. Cindy lives and works in Castle Rock,

Table of Contents

Foreword by Nancy Kirk

Author's Note

Part One The History of the Crazy Quilt
Origins of the Crazy Style
Early American Crazy Style
America's Oldest Dated Crazy Quilt?
The Emergence of the Crazy Trend
The Rise of the Crazy Trend
Popular Crazy Themes
The Flame Burns Low
Crazies in the Twentieth Century
Quilting Crazy in Modern Times

Part Two How to Make a Crazy Quilt
Planning Your Quilt
Cutting the Background Foundation
Three Piecing Methods
Joining Your Crazy Patchwork Units
Finishing Your Crazy
Embroidering and Embellishing Your Crazy Quilt

Appendix Embroidery Motifs
Works Cited
Additional Resources
About the Author

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

It is colorfully presented and well-written.  I enjoyed seeing all of the vintage imagery and even learned a few things. Take a look.  – Quilting Arts, March 2008 The history of the crazy is as colorful as the fabrics and stitches used in its creation.  This book could have been a pedantic treatise of boring facts and dates but it’s not.  A way to describe it would be that it is more lake a fascinating fabric/time treasure map. – Colorado Quilt Council Newsletter, March 2008 It’s a beautiful book…filled with many gorgeous pictures of both antique and contemporary crazy quilts to drool over. –, March 2008 I highly recommend this beautiful book to any and all who have even a passing interest in crazy quilts.  It certainly stole my heart. –, March 2008 After reading about the history of crazy quilts from their probable origin in the costume of the commedia dell'artes Harlequin through their heyday in the Victorian era to the present and after admiring page after page of brilliant, outrageous crazies, you will certainly want to create one of your own. – PieceWork Magazine, Sept/Oct. 2008 Here's your chance to get up close and personal with an amazing collection of crazies.  Quilt historian Cindy Brick explains how and why Victorians spoke in a symbolic language through their needlework and follows the crazy trend through to its influence on today's quilters.  The fascinating story is illustrated with beautifully photographed quilts and ephemera.  Should the lure of elegant fabrics, over-the-top embellishments, and fancy embroidery stitches inspire you to start some craziness of your own, you'll find basic instructions and quirky vintage motifs. – Quilters Newsletter, Sept./Oct. 2008 This comprehensive and loving look at the crazy quilt undertakes the difficult task of determining provenance and origins, and celebrates the persistence of the form with a high degree of historical integrity and grace…This handsome volume belongs on the shelf of any quilter touched by this rich tradition. Which in all likelihood includes all of us. –, October 2008


Crazy quilts are addictive, and once you get hooked they become a lifetime passion. They are full of surprises. I've seen something new in every Crazy quilt I've ever looked at-a new stitch combination, a new embellishment motif, a new fabric, a new painting technique, some new ribbonwork, a new historic ribbon-the list goes on and on.

Cindy Brick learned just how addictive these oddball creatures of the quilting world can be about ten years ago. She had been aware of them earlier, but when a job change allowed her time to take over the editor's position for the Crazy Quilt Society newsletter, she jumped in with enthusiasm, but without realizing what a consuming passion crazies would become.

Over the years, her exploration of the history of Crazy quilting has led her to new theories about the origins of the art form, which are mysteries that have long intrigued all of us who love these unique quilts.

If you are new to Crazy quilting, as a collector, a scholar, or a quilter, you are embarking on a never-boring, never-ending journey with wonderful visual adventures around every corner. As you turn the pages of this "common sense" history of Crazy quilts, you will meet quilters who broke all the rules of quilting. They invented a form of abstract art a generation before the painters who became famous for it.

If you have been in love with Crazy quilts for years or decades, you will see them anew as Cindy explores the development of the form over time. You'll find something new in every quilt-look closely. As a quilter, you will find techniques to adapt in your quilts today. As a collector, you'll see great examples of the breadth and depth of thefield.

As I have studied crazy quilts over the years, I've found parallels in other art forms. Crazy quilts are to patchwork quilts what jazz is to a symphony. Jazz is improvisational, but works within a structure. The final result is most noticeable for the individual touches the artist brings to the underlying foundation of the melody, rhythm, and key.

Similarly, Crazy quilts build on a foundation, use a structure of blocks or wholecloth style, and may borrow elements of "sane" quilts, like sashing and borders. But within those most basic elements of structure the artist takes off on a flight of fancy, adding stitches, embellishments, ribbons, charms, buttons, fabrics, yarns-even animals, toys, and more.

I always tell my beginning crazy-quilt students that I have three rules for Crazy quilting:

1) There are no rules.

2) Always underlap velvets (the opposite of overlap).

3) Crazy quilts are the one thing in life where more is more. In almost all other aspects of our lives, less is more-in design, architecture, eating-we are advised "moderation in all things." Crazy quilts are the exception. They get better the more you add, and a crazy quilt is only done when you can't stand working on it anymore.

Cindy Brick has learned these lessons well. Now she is sharing a decade of study and research with all of us. Enjoy!

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Crazy Quilts: History - Techniques - Embroidery Motifs 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have many books on crazy quilts, but still wanted this one, very inspirational.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wheres horseclan at?