The Library Springfield-Greene County Library District Springfield, Missouri
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Piecing Together Your First Quilt

For many, quilting is an enjoyable hobby that not only satisfies a need for artistic expression, but also leads to the creation of a useful product. There are many different techniques for creating a quilt, and they can be made both by hand or with a sewing machine. Here is a sampling of some of the books in the Library’s collection intended for quilters of all experience levels. 

You can find additional materials on this subject by doing a subject search for Quilting on the Library's catalog.

How-To Quilt Books

 Learn to Make a Quilt From Start to Finish by Carolyn S. Vagts. With simple instructions for beginners and insider techniques for quilting veterans, this book walks stitchers through the process of making a quilt with the aid of step-by-step photographs.



 Ultimate Quilting Bible: A Complete Reference with Step-by-Step Techniques by Marie Clayton. Each chapter is devoted to one key area of quilting, including basic skills, advanced techniques, embellishments, designing and adapting, and caring for quilts.



 Donna Kooler's Revised Encyclopedia of Quilting is a comprehensive guide to the history, techniques, and patterns for the quilting enthusiast. From the origins of the first quilt to today's modern techniques, this book has information valuable to quilters at every skill level.


Quilt Pattern Books:

 Simple Style: Easy Weekend Quilts by Sara Dierpersloot. A collection of more than 15 quick-and-easy projects using a variety of styles, prints and fabrics. Each project is easy enough for beginners and intriguing enough for seasoned quilters.


 Beginner-Friendly Quilts. The 14 quilts in this book feature rotary cutting and quick piecing techniques. This book is for beginners as well as experienced quilters who prefer easy patterns.



 Simple Contemporary Quilts: Bold Designs for the First-Time Quilter by Valerie Van Arsdale Shrader. A comprehensive introduction to quilting with a thoroughly modern attitude, plus creative ideas and time-saving tips. The book includes 20 projects, from small wall hangings to large blankets, that reveal the versatility of today's quilting.


 Favorite Traditional Quilts Made Easy by Jo Parrott. Discover the secrets to creating gorgeous traditional-style quilts simply and easily. Using strips, squares, rectangles and the folded-corner technique, this volume shows you how to turn advanced block-designs into simple cutting and sewing projects. Featuring 7 projects for quilters of all levels, you'll soon be creating accurate blocks and gorgeous quilts with ease.

 Baby and Kids Quilts: 34 Projects for Tots to Teens by Marianne Fons and Liz Porter. Wanting to make a gift of love for a special baby or youngster is often the reason many people get started in quilt making. The small size quilts are fairly quick to finish, and the cute designs are just plain fun! Each quilt is shown in a lifestyle photograph and an assembly diagram, and are accompanied by a complete materials list and step-by-step instructions. There are projects for all skill levels, as well as styles from soft and sweet to bold and bright.

 Modern Basics: Easy Quilts to Fit Your Budget, Space and Style by Amy Ellis. With bright, modern prints and simple patterns, new quilters are eased into a creative adventure. Uncomplicated instructions guide you at every step, from cutting and piecing to finishing your quilt.


Look to these online resources to find more information on quilting patterns, technique and history.

The Quilt Index: An online research tool designed to provide access to information and images of quilts held in private and public collections. You can search for quilts by type of pattern, quilter, time period, style, fabric or location.

Quilts and Quiltmaking in America 1978-1996: Showcases materials from two American Folklife Center collections, the Blue Ridge Parkway Folklife Project Collection (1978) and the All-American Quilt Contest. The collection includes recorded interviews with quiltmakers and over 400 images.

America’s Quilting History: A resource containing quilting history articles and old time quilt patterns.

Quilt University Library: Includes links to glossaries for computer and quilting terms and a metric conversions table.


For some, the best part about making a quilt is giving it away to someone who can put it to use.  Here are some local organizations who take donations of new handmade quilts.

Newborns in Need provide hospitals and clinics in the area with baby items such as quilts, blankets, bibs and burp cloths to the families of less-fortunate babies in need.

Project Linus works to provide children who are seriously ill, traumatized, victims of natural disasters or otherwise in need through gifts of new, handmade blankets and afghans.


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