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The Best of Baltimore Beauties: 95 Patterns for Album Blocks and Borders [Paperback]

Elly Sienkiewicz
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)

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Book Description

May 15, 2000 157120086X 978-1571200860 illustrated edition
In response to quilters' demand, this book assembles the most acclaimed block and border patterns gleaned from the author's previously published and out-of-print collections, now available in a stunning volume that includes four brand-new Baltimore-style beauties.

Thoroughly indexed for finding multiple patterns of any block style-baskets, bouquets, papercuts, and so on-the collection comprises ninety-five full-scale patterns with annotations pertaining to history, symbolism, and construction.



Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Elly Sienkiewicz is a quiltmaker, teacher, and the author of Fancy Appliqu, Baltimore Beauties and Beyond, and other best-selling crafts books. She lives in Washington, D.C.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: C&T Publishing; illustrated edition edition (May 15, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 157120086X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1571200860
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 8.5 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #829,570 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I am a happy woman, a lucky woman. Born in 1942, I remain blessed by Wellesley's liberating education, two life-long friends and happy memories. I'm grateful my father dissuaded me from a French major ("A skill, learn it later,") suggesting instead History's tree "whereon to hang what you love -- art, literature, religion broadly studied." I was blessed by loving parents -- the Artist and the Physicist -- as they protected our childhood innocence by waiting 'til asked (1963) to answer, "What your father has (multiple sclerosis from before my birth) is not arthritis. He will write you a letter." Seven years as a high school social studies teacher, feeling middle-child middling, I asked how he, a famous physicist, had come to father two history majors and a sociologist? "Man's greatest question is the nature of his relation to the Universe," he had replied, "While physics probes the nature of man's relation to the Universe, history probes man's relationship to his fellow man." I decided on my career freshman year, when, after supper, wearing my pajamas -- real red 'Doctor Dentons' with the feet, the flapper, & red shawl-wrapped, a dorm-mate, looking up, offered, "Elly, you'll make a perfect grandmother."

Now with seven grandchildren, my career-dream has come true. Self-employed since after our first child, I have run a number of businesses from home, including landlady, Happy Mother Childcare, quilting classes, Cabin Fever Calicoes (1977-1985) a mail-order quilt-shop. Since 1983 I have written 30 books on appliqué and Album Quilts. I had never written a book, but in 1983 Spoken Without a Word was easily written, quickly, and with fervency. I was enthralled by these old quilts seen first on exhibition, and I thought I understood that these quilts were speaking to us without words. My next thirty years sang with Baltimore's Album Song as I learned the style and joined so many inspiring colleagues around the world, replicating or innovating, a 'revivalist' style.

A 30th Anniversary (of the book, of the international Baltimore Album Quilt Revival movement) Edition of Spoken Without a Word, 24 Faithfully Reproduced Patterns from Classic Baltimore Album Quilts and a Lexicon of Their Symbols will debut Spring, 2014. That book begins, "In Retrospect -- One cannot be interested in an ancient tongue spoken, wordless, on cloth-- without reconsidering the world around one, the images stitched, the human stories conveyed. Nor can she consider the history thus recorded -- without being curious about what it conveys about whence she came, who she has become. Spoken Without a Word is about needlework, old patterns, fine art that having touched us, is being stitched anew today. In the broader sense, these designs, their history -- all these are fundamentally about you and me, our roots, and America's story. A story both for those here born, and those who have come, for all privileged to strive 'neath a Liberty Tree's branches, seeking what fruit she has borne. The most distinguished body of Baltimore's antebellum Album quilts might well have been meant for us to see. They were made, I believe, as monuments to the Founders' vision of a country without a king, a Republic ruled by freemen, constitution-bound. With trepidation, Benjamin Franklin, having just signed that first hard-won document of self-government, had answered a lady asking what they had created: "A republic, if you can keep it." The Baltimore Album Quilts' greatest gift to us may well be their message of courage. Through three wars (1776 and 1812 in their neighborhoods) their mid-Atlantic, mid-19th century mid-Atlantic lives, were certainly (no penicillin then . . . ) harder than our own. And yet --there is no whining in their quilts. The 'high-style Baltimores stand dramatically apart, a body of work defined by an identifiable beauty. Those sturdy women, their supportive men, sang a strong song, sweetly stitched. You may decide it was intended for us to hear. For whatever reason their style has called, 30 years now, to us around the world. Privileged to do so we are comforted as we stitch our own beauty, witness to faith and hope, quilted and with loving courage bound."

In 1995, I founded The Elly Sienkiewicz Appliqué Academy®, an annual appliqué and quilt study conference each February in Williamsburg, Va. The Academy will be celebrating its 19th year in 2014 at the Kingsmill Resort in Williamsburg, Virginia, an annual week-long teaching conference with a large faculty. Top-rate teaching leavened by all-Appliqué daily exhibitions, good food, and girlish fun have earned 'Academy' the affection nickname 'Ms. Tesaa' even with 'never-able-to-be-there' friends who follow Tesaa's activities on my 'List Visit' at www.EllySienkiewicz.com.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
40 of 42 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Book February 8, 2002
Format:Paperback
I was disappointed. As a new quilter, I have been looking forward to doing a Baltimore albumn quilt. The book keeps refering to previous books and lessons to learn how to use the patterns, but does not attempt to explain or assist the reader in any way. I do not own any previous books so this one leaves me cold. Not recommended for new quilters like myself.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Baltimore Album Applique Quilt Block Patterns August 2, 2005
Format:Paperback
This is the second book of STRICTLY Baltimore Album Applique Quilt Blocks, sized for 12 inch squares. (if you want larger squares you would have to enlarge the well defined blocks) There are about 6 pages of color displaying variations of the same and similiar simple blocks shown in the body of the book. Most of the blocks in this book are contemporary designed blocks from students of the author. However there are some complicated floral basket designs from historical Baltimore Album Quilts as well. This book is only for the experienced applique quilter who is familiar with Baltimore album Quilts - since it is primarily only patterns to choose from in making your own quilt. This book will not teach you how to make a quilt, nor how to applique etc as only earlier books by this author contain these instruction. Since I have all the authors books, I found this a delight to add to my collection.
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31 of 34 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Where are the color pictures? December 26, 2000
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
I'm disappointed there are no color photos of quilts to show these patterns.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars fantastic patterns, but no instruction May 30, 2000
Format:Paperback
I love the patterns in this book! There is alot of variety - roses, wreaths, vases, papercuts, etc, but almost every block refers you to Baltimore Beauties and Beyond Vol 1 to know HOW to put them together. I am an experienced quilter and love to applique, but have never tried Baltimore-type blocks. I think Vol 1 is probably the book to begin with, and The Best of Baltimore Beauties is more of a pattern resource for quilters that are Baltimore-experienced!
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30 of 33 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The Best of Baltimore Beauties: 95 Patterns October 12, 2000
Format:Paperback
Elly Sienkiewicz books in the past have been absolutely fantastic. I am disappointed in that this book is a repeat except for a few patterns (7). There really is nothing new here. If I had never purchased any of her other books I would rate it a 5
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This is an excellent book for all fans of applique quilting. I've looked through almost all of Elly Sienkiewicz's previous books but have never yet purchased any of them. I'm glad I waited for this book. It really does contain some of the best designs by Ms. Sienkiewicz. Probably not for beginning quilters as the focus is on the patterns and not technique, but the experienced applique artist will enjoy the many challenging blocks. It's definitely a great addition to my quit library!
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars You need her other book. August 11, 2005
Format:Paperback
I found lots of patterns in this book. Great! However, all the pictures are in black and white and are taken from her other books. She tells us which OTHER books contain the instructions. In other words, buy "Baltimore Beauties and Beyond". You will get much more out of it.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Baltimore review September 29, 2004
Format:Paperback
Although there are many patterns and pictures, none are in color and most refer the reader back to Volume 1, Lesson #.....

Good for ideas, but difficult to complete if you don't own the previous volume.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredable book
Patterns and the history of the each. Also stating if it was a classic Baltimore or beyond. This is a must if you are working on a Baltimore Album quilt.
Published 14 months ago by Sharon Davis
5.0 out of 5 stars LOVE LOVE LOVE IT!!!!!
When I saw this book I put it in my cart and was deciding if I really wanted it. When I got a notice that there was a price reduction I jumped on it.
THANK YOU!!!
Published 14 months ago by Judy L. Oswald
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Addition to the Baltimore Collection
Purchased this book in my search for some original Baltimore patterns. I already have the "Best of Baltimore Beauties II' and had been searching for the first book. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Shela Simpson
5.0 out of 5 stars Baltimore Quilts
The book is full of wonderful Baltimore applique designs, but for people like me who do not have the know how and knowledge of applique it could be frustrating. Read more
Published on July 26, 2011 by irismary
4.0 out of 5 stars Book for an experienced quilter with a collection of other Sienkiewicz...
I am an experienced quilter who loves Elly Sienkiewicz style of quilts, and owns a number of her books. Read more
Published on April 3, 2011 by Ali Julia
5.0 out of 5 stars Baltimore Beauty
This is a fantastic book. I have just started making my first Baltimore Album Quilt. If you were to purchase one book, this would be the one, and if you could find the first one,... Read more
Published on November 13, 2010 by quteequilter
5.0 out of 5 stars What a book
GREAT BOOK as a companion to the Baltimore Album Quilts. A few more patterns to add to the blocks for you r quilt
Published on May 14, 2009 by A. J. Rowland
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic baltimore blocks
Contains 95 patterns in one book, value for money these days. Black and white patterns though.
Published on April 15, 2009 by Slowsteady
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best of Baltimore Beauties: 95 Patterns for Album Blocks and...
A true classic for anyone who loves Baltimore Quilts and Applique'. I was really fortunate to get this one as its now out of print. Read more
Published on September 26, 2007 by Jill
3.0 out of 5 stars 95 patterns
The patterns are great, but refer to other books for instructions. If you do not have the other books, you can still do the project, but on your own to some extent.
Published on June 2, 2007 by Patricia W. Psholka
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