Art Quilt Maps

I love maps.  I love the different ways geography is shown.  I even took a cartography class once. So why did it take this book by Valerie Goodwin to make me consider making a map as a quilt?

It’s hard to explain how to use Art Quilt Maps. If you’re looking for quilt patterns with yardages and step by step instructions, this book will disappoint. However, it’s great for inspiration and new ideas. It’s more an album of art quilt maps, though Goodwin presents the materials and design process she uses, and her sources of inspiration.  After that, though, you wing it.  I can’t help but like a book that suggests haikus as starting points for quilts.

art_map_examplesGoodwin is a professor of architecture so she’s used to representing the world as lines and symbols on a flat surface.  Architects are taught to construct scale models of their designs and draw blueprints (or the electronic version of them.) Their work is both functional and aesthetic.

Goodwin’s preferred construction materials are a bit unusual – cotton crinoline (available online), silk organza and Liquitex soft body acrylic paint.  She uses the stiff crinoline as her base and then layers mostly neutral or solid fabric scraps (cottons and silks), blending the joins between pieces with paint and organza.  Stamping, hand stitches, and machine stitches mark the objects – roads, water courses, buildings, etc. I enjoy the way she summarizes her techniques.

art_map_techniquesI found that Goodwin’s development process is much more complex and layered than I had thought on first looking at her quilts. The fourteen steps she shows to make Stonehenge add nuance but don’t call attention to themselves apart from the whole.

stonehenge_Goodwinstonehenge_construction1stonehenge_construction2I like that Goodwin suggests a creating a map of an imaginary place, though I’m thinking about a fabric map of an actual place, my favorite hiking trail. Or maybe a map of Middle Earth.


Filed under Books

5 responses to “Art Quilt Maps

  1. Pingback: A Map Quest | The Snarky Quilter

  2. Thanks. Looks like a worthy book!

    • I think it’s the kind of book that sneaks up on you. It inspired me to check out a book called “Lights of Mankind: The Earth At Night As Seen From Space.” It has amazing ideas for a map type quilt.

  3. i loved this book! She came to our guild and the workshop was fantastic. If you get a chance to see her or take a class, do it!

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