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Adventures in Design: Ultimate Visual Guide, 153 Spectacular Quilts, Activities & Exercises [Kindle Edition]

Joen Wolfrom
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)

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Print List Price: $29.95
Kindle Price: $9.99
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Book Description

Joen Wolfrom updates her classic book, Visual Dance, with spectacular new quilts from around the world. This is the quilter's design textbook, using Joen's internationally-acclaimed expertise and talent to illustrate the seven principals of design: line, shape, color, value, texture, proportion, and scale.

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Joen Wolfram is a renowned quilter, author, and teacher. Her work can be found in both private and public collections throughout the world.

Product Details

  • File Size: 37048 KB
  • Print Length: 144 pages
  • Publisher: C&T Publishing (September 1, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007Y59T88
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #626,141 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
38 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review of Joen Wolfrem's 'Adventures in Design' September 25, 2011
Joen Wolfrom is well known for her knowledge and use of color. I read her blogs on color regularly [...]. In Joen's new book 'Adventures in Design', she shares her knowledge of color, along with tons of other designing principles. In addition, Adventures in Design is like an encyclopedia of traditional and lots of art quilts. The book itself is colorful, with gorgeous colors on every page. Exercises are given after each educational chapter, and even the exercise pages are bright and colorful.
Adventures in Design covers many lessons for quilt designers: color, symmetry, balance, line and shape, distance, and so much more! I read this book in the evening, and it really woke me up, just looking at it. If you are interested in quilting, traditional or art, this is the book you need. I can't think of anything else that you would need to learn to design your own quilt!
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36 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Helpful Book on Quilt Design October 15, 2011
How do you make a "good" quilt great? How do you move from producing quilts that are "so-so" to quilts that are dynamic, that incorporate originality, sparkle with color, draw your eye with movement, and intrigue the viewer? Once you have mastered precision piecing and other aspects of technical excellence how can you move your quilting to the next level?

Joen Wolfrom is a prolific writer and designer who has produced multiple books on quilting and color that seek to answer these kinds of questions. She also owns her own pattern company (JWD Designs) and some of the quilts in the book by such notables as Ricky Tims and Alex Anderson are available as patterns from it. This book offers a beautiful presentation of 153 quilts, both geometric and representational. The representational quilts cover a wide range of styles--impressionist, surrealist, realistic, abstract, contemporary and traditional, large and small. The geometric quilts will put to rest any notion that more traditional patchwork and piecing is necessarily boring or outdated.

The quilts are accompanied by text that explains some of the design principles used in each creation. Along with this is an explanation of how to work to increase the beauty and success of any design using the principles that can be observed in nature. She has developed separate chapters on each of the design elements (line, direction, shape or form, color, value, texture, proportion and scale) There is also a chapter on designing blocks. Activities and exercises are presented at the end of each chapter. These exercises assume that you have a body of work (quilts or photo images, for example) available for examination or experimentation, or that you have the time and equipment to create them.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth buying October 10, 2011
This book was so interesting I read it from cover to cover in one sitting. I know I was supposed to do the exercises but I just wanted to keep reading. The text is engaging, easy-to-read and very useful if you struggle to make balanced, aesthetically pleasing designs. Definitely one for the bookshelf of every artist - quilt, fibre or otherwise.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous! October 30, 2011
If you find yourself struggling with the essentials of good design, need a refresher, or simply want a good design reference book, you'll want this book. Besides it being a visual feast, it is a journey down a creative path with Joen breaking down the principles of design, explaining the concepts, showing many examples of quilts and drawings to help illustrate those concepts, and providing activities and exercises to get you going.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Adventures in Design by Joen Wolfrom January 27, 2012
By Wendy C
Joen Wolfrom gives clear explanations of design elements and uses photos of a variety of quilts to illustrate each point. She covers line and direction, shape, colour, value, texture, proportion and scale, and visual balance. The best thing is that she talks about design problems and how to overcome or avoid them. At the end of each chapter there are activities for those who want to deepen their understanding. Joen assumes the reader has technical quilting ability and aims the book at those who want to develop their own designs. Traditional and contemporary designs are featured; I just wish that all the photos could have been large. Artists who use other mediums would also find this book useful. The book is great - you learn about design and get to enjoy many (153) beautiful quilts too.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great theories to follow February 7, 2012
As always the team at C&T Publishing have pulled out all the stops. This book is a visual guide to over 150 quilts, activities and exercises. It's the equivalent of a double back flip, a somersault and a high jump rolled into one. Learn, study and experiment is the philosophy of this book. As designers, we are always trying to improve. There are examples of work from different quilt artists, so you are sure to find work that inspires you. Some of the work is breathtaking. I liked Setting The Stage with all its design tips. The activities will set you on track and help you understand the processes involved. Anyone looking to improve their quilt art would benefit enormously from this book. I'm just going to mention a few favourite artists whose work is featured : Gloria Loughman, Ludmila Aristove, Norma Shlager, Sue Benner, Margarete Steinhauer, Paula Nadelstern, Janet Steadman and Robin M. Haller. Superb choice of works to demonstrate the theories. This review first appeared on yarnsandfabrics website.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is helpful picking color combinations for your work ...
This book is helpful picking color combinations for your work. I use it when l get stumped. A very well written book complete to give you confidence.
Published 2 months ago by Judysart
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great book!
Published 3 months ago by Wendy Mamattah
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars
Published 3 months ago by Legin56
5.0 out of 5 stars This is another great lesson in tweaking your designs to be more...
I have learned more about design from this author than any other. Every single one of her books is as full of design techniques as a college course. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Elizabeth Ward
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Inspirational- a book to be studied.
Published 5 months ago by TexasBookReader
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous!
This is a fabulous book filled with great detail and insight into designing art quilts!
Published 6 months ago by M. Lasker
5.0 out of 5 stars Well developed foundation
Design and color theory is explained in layman terms with clear examples, excellent illustrations. This is a solid reference tool.
Published 6 months ago by anna
4.0 out of 5 stars As described
I only gave it 4 stars because I was slightly disappoited that there were no actually patterns with the book. It is as decribed The Ultimate Visual Guide. Read more
Published 8 months ago by A. Rice
5.0 out of 5 stars Ultimate in color guides!
I have had the honor of studying under Joen Wolfrom in a workshop. She is amazing in her knowledge of color theory. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Kristy M. Ottinger
5.0 out of 5 stars Our study group
Joen Wolfrom is one of the art quilt/design gurus of our time. Four of us formed a "art quilt" group and her book was our guide of choice. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Kalynn S Oleson
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More About the Author

Joen began quiltmaking in 1974, after she left her career in the education field to become a homemaker and a stay-at-home mom. Her interest in color and design surfaced in the early 1980s. She has taught and lectured in the quilting field, both nationally and internationally since 1984. Her guest international work has included engagements in England, the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Canada, Germany, Holland, Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa. In the 1980s, Joen created commissioned textile art for many private clients and corporations. Her work is included in collections throughout the world. Joen is the author of nine books and products. Several were been bestsellers in the arts and crafts field. Her works include A Garden Party of Quilts, Color Play, Make Any Block Any Size, Patchwork Persuasion, The Visual Dance, The Magical Effects of Color, Landscapes & Illusions, Paper Crafter's Color Companion, and the 3-in-1 Color Tool. Joen's earliest bestsellers (Landscapes & Illusions, The Magical Effects of Color, The Visual Dance) will be available electronically in 2007. Joen is the owner of JWD Publishing, a pattern company that publishes designs by leading quiltmakers and designers. These patterns may be purchased at quilt and fabric stores under each designer's pattern-line name. Joen enjoys working in her garden, reading, photography, hiking, playing bridge, and spending time with her family. Visit Joen's website at and her pattern company's website at


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