I come from a long line of quilters and blanket makers. In fact, I still have the blanket my grandma made for me when I was a baby.

I Started Quilting in High School

My mom and older sister taught me the basics of sewing. Then I took a sewing class in high school. That is where I started my first quilt. A puff quilt for my older sister.

Here is a quilt I finished right after graduation. These are t-shirts and special photos from my time in high school.

Favorite Quilts

Since that time I have made many quilts. Here are a few of my favorites.

My oldest daughter LOVED Halloween all year long for several years. I made this quilt for her birthday.
This quilt is made out of pieces of my girls’ baby clothes.
I love to make Levi quilts! So warm and cozy with fleece on the back.

Passing along the tradition.

I told myself I needed to teach my girls how to sew, but we were always so busy with sports and other things. Well, during the pandemic, when the girls were home and everything was canceled, all my excuses went away and I did it. I taught my girls to sew and taught them several basic quilting blocks, sewing the blocks together, and tying a quilt. It was quality time together and I think their quilt turned out beautifully.

We started with a simple 9-square block. Then they each learned how to sew four more quilt square patterns.
Moving onto the final stages of the quilt & the final result!

Okay, okay…I’ll get to the books.

Hahaha. I know. This is a picture book blog. Not a quilting blog. BUT at least now you know a little of the history of my connection with quilting and why I was so delighted to read through a pile of quilting books to find my favorites!

THE QUILTMAKER’S GIFT by Jeff Brumbeau and Gall de Marken

This is a fable of a marvelous quiltmaker and a miserable greedy king. The king requests a quilt, but the quiltmaker will not make him one unless he agrees to give away all that he owns.

The king is angry and tries to have the quiltmaker killed.

When that fails to work, he reluctantly decides to try giving things away.

The more he gives away, the happier the king feels inside until one day the quiltmaker delivers the promised quilt to the king who now has few possessions, but a happy heart.

What a great message! And the illustrations are gorgeous!

THE ARABIC QUILT by Aya Khalil and Anait Semirdzhyan

When Kanzi and her family moved from Egypt to America, Kanzi brought along a beautiful quilt from her Grandma. One day Kanzi takes the quilt to school to share with her class. Then each member learns what their name looks like in Arabic and they make a class quilt with those letters to hang in the hall.

This book is full of emotion and warmth, showing the comfort of a quilt from a loved one and from an old home, the struggle of wanting to fit into a new culture, and the beauty of what someone with a different culture can add to those around them. I love this book on so many levels.

THE KINDNESS QUILT by Nancy Elizabeth Wallace.

Minna and the other kids in her class are working on a project where they create a paper quilt. Each quilt block represents kind things they have done for others. In the end, they have a beautifully covered bulletin board.

What a great idea! This is a great book to read during kindness week and make a similar kindness quilt in class or at home.

Based on a true story, THE ALL-TOGETHER QUILT by Lizzy Rockwell is about a community center where senior citizens and other adults join with kids in the neighborhood to create quilts.

I love that this book actually shows how to put fabric together to sew a block. It also includes quite a few of the simple quilt blocks. It is a vibrant and heartwarming story.

PAPA AND THE PIONEER QUILT by Jean Van Leeuwen and Rebecca Bond

Perhaps because of my own pioneer heritage and love for Little House On The Praire, I found this book endearing.

Rebecca is crossing the plains to Oregon with her family. As they go along, Rebecca collects pieces of fabric to remember their journey and in the end, her Mama helps her create a memory quilt. (I am telling you, I am a sucker for a good memory quilt.)

I love this simple story.

Do you have any suggestions for me?

I am always looking for great book suggestions! If you know of a wonderful picture book about quilts I missed, I would LOVE to hear about it! Let me know in the comments below.

Jamie Bills

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