Well of COURSE I was going to say yes when JQA asked me to be on his book tour - especially since the date for my tour is actually his 40th birthday! Well, I'm kind of cheating a bit - my stop on the tour was actually September 23 and his birthday is September 24, but seeing as I'm writing this on the 24th in Australia and it's still the 23rd in the USA I'm still telling the truth. Right?
Anyway, on with the show... may I introduce to you BEYOND NEUTRAL, by my good friend, John Q Adams.
John's book sets out to showcase quilts that use the colours of nature as backgrounds, rather than white or cream. He calls them "natural neutrals". The book is divided into chapters by elements, such as Wind and Sky, Earth, Leaves and Grass. No surprise to me that my favourite chapter is Water - I love to be outside, but anywhere with water to look at, swim in, boat on or listen to is my favourite place to be.
Living near the Pacific then, no surprise that my favourite quilt in the book is the cover quilt, Pacific Crest.
I've had wonderous intention of making this quilt for my Oscar, who is a water boy too - however due to the usual dirty word (DEADLINE) I have no sewing life other than that for my next book so it will have to wait and be a treat for when I'm done!
I've also been pondering Canyonlands.... I think my dad would enjoy this one, in greys, purples and gold like the Sydney Harbour cliffs.
I guess what this brings me to is that although these simple, graphic quilts are a treat for anyone (and obviously can be made in pretty colours for girls, or whatever colours you like!!) this book is WONDERFUL for making quilts for men. I have two boys and a lot of special men in my life and I can say with conviction that there aren't a lot of great masculine patterns about - and something about the elements of nature, the directional patterns and the colour combinations make this such a fantastic book of quilts for men. Before you all jump up and down and scream about man quilters, I'm not being sexist!! It has NOTHING to do with the fact a man wrote the book - except of course that a man wrote the book, and perhaps it's his clever eye that gives the book it's own special character.