Scrap Republic. Isn't that the most perfect name ever? I mean, I would have bought it on the name alone, not to mention all the delicious, scrappy, rainbowy goodness. So I bought this book almost without thinking about it. The $$ low investment helped this hasty decision somewhat! I've almost finished my second quilt top from this book. (Well, one was following a pattern, and one was "inspired" by a pattern)
So now it's time for a little book review. I've pondered whether I should even give my own little review like this. To me, a book review isn't worth a lot unless it's honest and not involving a free book in exchange for blogging about it. NOW before you get huffy, please...I'm not downing bloggy book tours because I think they're a great way to spread the news about your new book and all. I'm just saying that the reviews that have made me buy a book are the ones where I can tell that the person really did like the book just.because.they.did.
The problem with honest book reviews though, is that I absolutely do not want to say anything to hurt the author's feelings if perchance they did ever stumble upon my post about their book. So hmmm...my solution: When I find a book that I can't keep quiet about, then I'll tell you about it. And yes, I'll be honest if there's something less than perfect about it, but obviously I love the book, so my gushing praise should be enough to make you go out and buy it, pronto, right?!
Here I am, busy at my machine, sewing my second!! quilt top from this book. That alone should tell you something (other than the fact that my scraps are getting uncontrollable)
This book is packed with color, and I'm a sucker for Emily's style of quilting, so everything is win/win here. Little photos of beautifully pieced quilt backs and bindings and dense quilting with lovely texture. The photos honestly have me squinting and holding it up to my face in hopes of seeing more!
Now, I'll say that the instructions aren't just overly clear, but then I've never seen a quilt book that matched up to the lovely online tutorials we see nowadays with so many great photos, so that's hardly worth mentioning, and should not deter you if you've made any quilts before. That is because these quilts are all fairly simple in design so they're not too confusing to begin with.
Here's a little glimpse of the first top I made. Most of the patterns in this book are for fairly small quilts. For example, this strippy rainbow one, (yes I'll show you more of it yet) I made into a large lap/almost twin size. This one I didn't follow the pattern or directions at all, just took inspiration from the yummy quilt in the book and dug in. And you don't have to use scraps or use this color scheme. See this pink one? Wonderful! And she includes instructions for making every one of these quilts from yardage.
Now this one is the really astounding one! I made this log cabin patchwork quilt completely by following a pattern, down to the exact diagram and not changing ONE thing!! Here's my experience with this pattern.
There's a cutting diagram that tells you the exact size and amount of strips to cut from each color of the rainbow. While I was cutting, I was thinking that this was taking a long time and maybe overcomplicating it a bit. BUT, I was having a blast! I just immersed myself in my scraps and didn't spend a moment thinking about the final design. I just cut 3 pink strips 2.5" x 8" and 5 pink strips 1.5"x4" and on and on.
And then the sewing. All that time cutting made putting the blocks together go REALLY fast. And this was all laid out precisely in diagrams too. (you can kind of see it in the top picture) I had a blast digging around in my pile of cut strips and pulling out the next treasured piece to sew on.
I haven't had so much fun putting something together for a long time. And when I had all the blocks together, I was actually kind of sad... and that is VERY unusual for this quilter with a short attention span.
So I'll be making this pattern again, only instead of scraps I'll choose six fabric to take the place of the rainbow scrappy colors. (yes, the instructions make this easy too!) And maybe with a darker background color?! Yummy!!
So overall, I'd say that the general way of constructing these blocks is different than what I'd do. I'm much more improv and less exact directions, whereas Emily seems to be more mathematical and precise. I think though, that the reason I'm enjoying this book so much is the fact that I'm letting go of the design, (cause let's face it, I love every design in this book) and just playing with color. Well, duh, that's what any pattern does for you right?
Well, I've rambled on and I hope I've convinced you to go buy this book. If you don't, you're just gonna be jealous whenever you see these bright scrappy quilts showing up around here!