The Grid Design Workbook by Cindy Seitz-Krug is a terrific resource for quilters who admire professional quality machine quilting when seen on quilts, especially those in quilt shows and quilt books - and aspire to similar results in their own machine quilting. The author does amazing heirloom machine quilting with her domestic sewing machine; the book’s contents are applicable to longarm quilting as well. The book, which focuses mainly on background designs, starts with the basics of supplies for marking and quilting and jumps right into drawing grids to sew background designs of Clamshells, Cathedral Window, and Orange Peel designs with many variations. Then, on to Basket Weave, Optical Illusions which provide a secondary pattern of puffed areas mimicking trapunto, Checkerboard, Square-in-a-Square, Greek Key, Plover, Double/Triple Grids, Pinwheels, and Twisted Ginkos. So many choices for creating lovely background effects!
Often a machine quilting book starts with photos of intricate, professionally quilted quilts that feel beyond the capability of the beginning or average machine quilter. It was clever of the author to insert a gallery of photos of stunning award-winning quilts featuring gridded background designs toward the end of the book. By then, the quilter reading the book has absorbed numerous well-written and well-illustrated step-by-step instructions for many gridded patterns. Intimidation is replaced by inspiration, a recognition of how the backgrounds were sewn, and a burgeoning feeling of “I could this!”
I would recommend The Grid Design Workbook to other quilters wanting to improve their machine quilting skills. Before trying to quilt the numerous designs I plan to use the practice pages provided to draw various designs on grids, thereby training my brain and motor skills to remember the flow of the designs. Can’t wait to get started!