Bookcase Wall Quilt

A friend from church approached me about making a quilt for the church retreat in October.  When I heard that the theme was “Connecting Through Stories”, I just knew which quilt design I wanted to do.  I’d had my eye on a bookcase quilt for ages and wanted to give it a try, so I used this as an opportunity to finally make one.

I started by cutting my scraps into various strips of width and length.  I did stick to fabrics that I felt someone would be able to write on and be easily visible.  Of course, every once in a while I threw in a darker color for balance.

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Then I sewed those scraps into large pieces of white muslin and trimmed them all to be about 12.5″ long.  From there, I sewed the “books” into blocks of roughly 12.5″ square.

Bookshelf scraps
Scraps for a bookshelf quilt

I also used some of the particularly smaller “books” to make stacks.

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The hard part came when I knew I needed to make about four books that leaned.  I did this by attaching white fabric all the way around and then using my grid to skew the cut, making sure to leave .25″ of white at the corners so that my book didn’t look like it was sinking into the shelf.

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From there I made my “shelf”.

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I did find a nice wood grain fabric at JoAnn’s, and I used it for the shelf.  The wood grain fabric was pretty pricey, though, so I went with a more cost-effective brown fabric for the back since it would be in a wall anyway.

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I decided to only quilt on the wood grain fabric since the shelves and books needed to be open for signatures, but I do think I’ll go back and quilt those sections at least a little before all is said and done.

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I did have one large brown block in the center of the shelves.  This actually isn’t a book but rather a frame.  My idea was to take a group picture of everyone at the retreat, print it on fabric, and then make it look like a photograph on the shelf.

The last step was to add a hanging sleeve. I can’t wait for everyone to see it at the retreat!

Related blogs and posts:

The Making of the Bookshelf Quilt: Planning Stage

Bookshelf Quilt