Welcome to Day 3 of the blog tour for John Kubiniec’s book A New Spin on Drunkard’s Path from C&T!
John has been a regular contributor to McCall’s for the past few years and we’re happy to help him celebrate the release of his beautiful new book.
In fact, we admit to feeling a little flutter of pride: we published the first in a series of John’s Drunkard’s Path quilt patterns. These quilt patterns were inspired by the 2011 “Infinite Variety” exhibit of red-and-white quilts in New York City, which he called Infinite Possibilities. (A free quilt pattern for a lap-size version is available for download from our website.) Thank you, John, for mentioning us in the Preface!
You’re not alone if you notice a similarity between Infinite Possibilities and the quilt pictured on the cover of John’s book. Although the quilt block and the use of color are the same, the quilt patterns are different. But it just goes to show, there’s an enduring appeal of that gorgeous combination that makes up two-color quilts!
In case some of you are asking, “What is a Drunkard’s Path pattern?” here is the basic quilt block or unit.
And that’s pretty much it. Two pieces of fabric, one curved seam.
But as John shows in his book, the possibilities that lie within that basic block are pretty much infinite.
If you’re new to curved seams, it might help to see it in action. Fellow McCall’s Quilting associate editor Gigi Khalsa did this short video on sewing curved seams to demonstrate the technique used to make the Planet Block that was featured in McCall’s Quilting’s January/February 2016 Block Builders Workshop.
I’m like Gigi — I pin a lot when I’m sewing curved seams. (I’m a firm believer that quilters should pin as much or as little as they feel they need to; there is no right or wrong way to approach it.)
But even though John only uses three pins (!) when sewing his Drunkard’s Path quilt blocks, he does use a stiletto and talks in the book about stopping to adjust the fabric and needle as necessary. This is not pedal-to-the-metal sewing here — there’s a reason you don’t see Drunkard’s Path Race quilts out there — but once you get the hang of letting the bias work for you instead of against you, I think you’ll find this type of sewing to be immensely satisfying. John’s technique instructions are excellent and accompanied by full-color photos of each step, making it a great book for quilters of all skill levels.
Here are a couple of the patterns included in the book that particularly caught my eye:
Nightfall by John Kubiniec
Isn’t Nightfall stunning? An Amish-inspired palette of mostly dark solids puts the focus on the elegant lines created by the block setting.
Bowties by John Kubiniec
Meanwhile, Bowties goes full-on scrappy to an equally striking effect.
Both Nightfall and Bowties are made with the same basic block; it’s the choice of fabric and the setting of those blocks that makes for two completely different designs.
The fact that I gravitated toward two quilts made with the same technique tells me that this is a block I want to work with. When I get home I’m going to dig through my supplies — I’m pretty sure I have a set of Drunkard’s Path templates in there somewhere…
Speaking of templates, in the book John provides full-size patterns so you can make your own, although he recommends buying acrylic templates for their durability when cutting many patches for a full-size quilt pattern. He recommends Marti Michell’s 6″ template set, but notes that there are many available to choose from.
But, we want to make things easy for you, which is why we’re giving away a set of Marti Michell templates along with a copy of John’s book to one lucky reader.
To enter for your chance to win a free copy of A New Spin on Drunkard’s Path, as well as a set of Marti Michell Drunkard’s Path templates, leave a comment below by midnight MDT on Sunday, October 9, 2016.
The winning name will be drawn by October 10 and notified by email with a subject line beginning YOU WON. One entry per person, please. This contest is open to US and Canadian residents, excluding Quebec. Winners in Canada will receive an electronic version of the book.
To follow the rest of the blog tour, visit John’s blog to view the full schedule. And thanks again, John, for inviting us to participate!