Book Review: Creating Children’s Artwork Quilts by Shannon Gingrich Shirley


Ready for a super fun book review? I was sent this quilt book and think it is just wonderful! It is all about making quilts, as well as other things, from a child’s artwork. It is not a book about how to make a quilt but rather how to take a child’s artwork and turn it into something utilizing fabric. The book is Creating Children’s Artwork Quilts by Shannon Gingrich Shirley.

About The Author

I love how the book provides a lot of ideas and methods for transforming pictures into something that is a real keepsake. Shirley has several pages that show how one drawing can become so many different things. The picture is of a bird and a nest on a branch. She shows us many different finished products and explains the steps she used to achieve each piece. I love how so many things are inexpensive and/or something most of us have laying around the house.

A Little Birdie


In Chapter One: Artwork Selection and Technique Shirley discusses many different methods of approach such as fusible applique, embroidery, and painting. She provides information about different techniques and talks about quick simple projects as well as more elaborate projects.

A Little Birdie embroidered


In this picture below you see a sample of how she proceeds with a particular method; utilizing different fabrics to achieve a “look” she wants to achieve. This is from Chapter Two: Preparation, Tools and Tips. She talks more about embroidery, painting, and fusible application in a picture.

A Little Birdie fabric/elements selection

What makes The Book Special?

One of the really great aspects of this book is just how Shirley is able to take away a lot of feelings of intimidation many people may feel when trying to transfer a child’s picture onto fabric. There is a simplicity to it all, coupled with whimsy and sheer childlike joy at a child’s art. Her work made me want to hunt down artwork from my children in the past and to have my daughter send me more drawings from my grandsons! I especially love the section on combining many drawings into a project. Here are some wonderful examples of that.

I Love You Dad
Cat Nap

This is a sample of a quilt the author made for the grandpa of the children and I think those footprints are just so adorable. The quilt speaks of years of childhood.

Grandpa’s Quilt


I truly enjoyed this book and it really inspired me to make some things from my grandsons’ artwork for their birthdays and Christmas and there is plenty of time! Shirley truly simplifies many methods and explains the history of her own children’s art work, including how creative her children are. It is far more than a simple how to quilt book but a guide to provide inspiration for the wondrous keepsakes many people may accumulate from children. I think it would be excellent in a classroom setting for children as well, making them feel like the true artists they all are. I highly recommend it for anyone who would want to try out different projects and I also think it would be a perfect gift for any parent!

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