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International Quilt Festival – Art – Pictorial

Wow!  The competition in this category, Art Quilts – Pictorial, was fierce.  It is an honor just to have one’s quilt accepted into this show.  Winning an award, even an honorable mention would be like a giant scoop of icing on the top of the cake!  Enjoy this selection!

Oklahoma Windsong by Cherrie Hampton, Oklahoma City, OK

Oklahoma Windsong by Cherrie Hampton, Oklahoma City, OK

Oklahoma Windsong won the Future Of Quilting Award, sponsored by Omnigrid and a $1,000 cash prise.  The quilt, by Cherrie Hampton is masterful!!!  Sadly, I did not photograph the sign that accompanied this quilt so I cannot provide detail on the story behind the quilt.

Faith Alone by Jerry Granata, Palm Springs, CA

Faith Alone by Jerry Granata, Palm Springs, CA

Another beauty by Jerry Granata.  He writes, “Doors represent opportunity and mystery.  This quilt was teh result of an art group challenge.  Fabrics were batiks, commercial cotton, and my hand-painted cloth.  Also used were vinyl, theatrical gels, felt, yard, ribbon, and twine.”

Does He Make My Butt Look Big, by Kristen Bryson, Houston, TX

Does He Make My Butt Look Big, by Kristen Bryson, Houston, TX

The whimsical nature of this quilt, due in large part to the title, makes this a particularly interesting quilt.  Kristen writes, “This quilt was made in response to a challenge to enter the Ultimate Guild Challenge.  Our chosen them was “Out of Africa”.  When I saw the photo taken by Maqsood Mughal, I had my inspiration.

Aquarium by Yoshiko Miyamo, Nishinomiya City, Hyogo Ken, Japan

Aquarium by Yoshiko Miyamo, Nishinomiya City, Hyogo Ken, Japan

Yoshiko writes, “The idea of a pair of quilts is adopted from traditional Japanese sliding doors. I especially tried to detail muscles which control beautifully delicate movement of fins.  I have realized from goldfish given the life in the aquarium that human life is given by the Earth.”

Ancient Echoes, by Jan Reed, Grass Valley, CA

Ancient Echoes, by Jan Reed, Grass Valley, CA

Ancient Echoes won 2nd Place in the Art – Pictorial category, a complex quilt that combines the iiguana of today with ancient cultures.  Jan Reed writes, “This iguana is using his sunbathing hours to reflect on his ancestors’ interaction with the past glory of the Mayan culture.  over 250 pieces of fabric were used to create this image using both applique and reverse applique.”

Cock of the Walk, by David Taylor, Steamboat Springs, CO

Cock of the Walk, by David Taylor, Steamboat Springs, CO

How can one not simply fall in love with the creative, colorful and whimsical quilts of David Taylor.  He writes. “This is my second rooster quilt, and this one has a whole lot more attitude!  Finding the perfect had-marbled fabrics was the key to the feathers . . .  that, and amassing enough different red “textured” prints for his wattle.”

Honu Harmony, by Eileen Williams,Cedar Point, NC

Honu Harmony, by Eileen Williams, Cedar Point, NC

Eileen Williams has captured the underwater scene beautifully with her exquisite detail in Honu Harmony.  I can almost imagine myself to be the snorkeler coming upon this scene.  She writes, “Earth’s oceans are home to vast numbers of sea creatures, many of which have become endangered.  Sea turtles are not on that list and are facing the threat of extinction.  We must work together to preserve these creatures and their habitat, and be mindful of the human effect on the balance of nature in our seas.”

Forest Spirit, by Hollis Chatelain, Hillsborough, NC

Forest Spirit, by Hollis Chatelain, Hillsborough, NC

Closing out this section is another incredible quilt by Hollis Chatelain whose threadwork, painting,  and quilting always combine to create a masterful image.  She writes, “The drawing of Forest Spirit was made while visit the Milford Sound rain forest in New Zealand. On of the bewildering things to me is the fact that there is very little wildlife in this lush and compact forest.  Nevertheless, I knew that there were beings hidden among the shadows, forest spirits that I could almost feel peering out of the depths of the vegetation.”

Stay tuned .  . .

 

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International Quilt Festival, IQA Competition – Art Abstract

Back to International Quilt Festival!  As I look through the remaining images, it is interesting to me to see what captured my attention.  There is a definite preference for Art Quilts, but I didn’t take as many photos of the abstract designs as I expected. However, the ones that appear below really spoke to me, a combination of large and small abstract categories. Each was an incredibly creative endeavor with outstanding workmanship.

It all Comes Around, by Karlyn Bue Lohrenz, Billings,MT

It all Comes Around, by Karlyn Bue Lohrenz, Billings,MT

Karlyn Bue Lohrenz writes, “I kept my hands and heart busy as I watched my 17-year-old granddaughter apply for, interview for, and accept a full scholarship to study abroad.  We went through many emotions as a family, and I finished this quilt the day she was greeted by her host family in Germany.”

Antelope Canyon by Kimberly Lacy, Colorado Springs, CO

Antelope Canyon by Kimberly Lacy, Colorado Springs, CO

I love the way the colors play on each other in Kimberly Lacy’s interpretation of a slot canyon.  Kimberly writes, “The slot canyons on the Navajo land in Arizona were my inspiration for this piece.  Narrow canyons of undulating sandstone capture light in unexpected and delightful turns and twists.”

Spider Lilies, by Enid Gjelten Weichselbaum, Rochester, MN

Spider Lilies, by Enid Gjelten Weichselbaum, Rochester, MN

Sadly, my photograph does not do justice to this magnificent small quilt by Enid Gjelten Weichselbaum which won third place in the Art Abstract – Small category.  She writes, “I am intrigued by the elegant and sparse, leafless spider lily when in bloom.  A Jane Sassaman class helped me turn the lovely blossoms into and abstract quilt.”

Regeneracion de Elementos, by Marisa Marquez Cortezon, Madrid, Spain

Regeneracion de Elementos, by Marisa Marquez Cortezon, Madrid, Spain

This fascinating combination of elements by Marisa Marquez Cortezon converged in a single quilt, speak eloquently of the human life cycle.  Marisa writes, “Life is constant movement, ever changing through birth experiences, life, and eventually, death.  The forces of nature shape and mold us.  The circle represents the cycle of life. . . the elements that surround and affect us, and the Phoenix, the everlasting fiery bird, and its ability to overcome even death by reviving from its ashes.”

Bullseye by Barbara Oliver Hartman, Flower Mound, TX

Bullseye by Barbara Oliver Hartman, Flower Mound, TX

Beautiful! Another masterpiece by Barbara Oliver Hartman in subtle tones.  Note the heavy quilting that gives this quilt texture that compliments the design.  Barbara writes, “This original design was a computer drawing that was enlarged to create a full-sized drawing.  I love to work with shapes that interact to produce an interesting design.”

BTW, if you are wondering why I haven’t shown any quilts by New Mexico artists, I am saving all of those for a special post about Quilting in the Land of Enchantment.

Stay tuned . . .

 

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Painted Stitched Canvas Class with Katie Pasquini-Masopust

A minor blog emergency happened here yesterday — my laptop died!!! Yes, it is really dead, all dead, even though it is only 6 months old.  The good news is that it is still under warranty so it will be fixed up, good as new, in another week or so.  But, I didn’t get a blog post done yesterday.  So, I bundled up my hard drive with all the photos on it, and took it to the office — where it still sits.  Now, back home and ready to post on my big computer, the photos from Houston aren’t here!  I guess it’s time to take a little break from showing IQA competition quilts and explore more local happenings, right here in good old Albuquerque.

Katie PM Demonstrates Painting Techniques

Katie PM Demonstrates Painting Techniques

We are very fortunate to have such a well-known quilt artist living just down the road in Santa Fe, a mere hour’s drive.  Katie Pasquini-Masopust taught her two-day Painted Stitched Canvas class at Ann Silva’s Bernina Sewing Center.  I was lucky to be one of the 20 students in her class.  Even though  I had taken the class a couple of years ago, I had so much fun that I did not want to miss out.  Besides, Katie had new material.

Painting Canvas - Red to Blue

Painting Canvas – Red to Blue

We began by painting three canvases, each in a different color palette.

Paintings Drying on the Floor

Paintings Drying on the Floor

This allowed us to continue painting while the wet canvases dried on the shop floor.

Painting Canvas - Work in Progress

Painting Canvas – Work in Progress

We added bits of fabric for texturs and then added more paint.  What a blast!  Most of us didn’t want to stop the building our layers.  But, stop we must.  One of the items on our supply list was to bring a painting shirt – which most of us did.  It was about then that Steve Silva, shop co-owner, strolled by the classroom, wearing in his perfectly pristine blue shirt — not a spot on it.  We set about correcting that asap!

Painting Steve - Hands All Around!

Painting Steve – Hands All Around!

Painting Steve - Katie adds Stamps

Painting Steve – Katie adds Stamps

Painting Steve - A Work in Progress

Painting Steve – A Work in Progress

Painting Steve was progressing well, but he just needed something else . . . . and, Katie had taught us about splatter painting.

Painting Steve - the Final Touches

Painting Steve – the Final Touches by Ginny Gaskill

Out back they went, Steve and Ginny, for the Finishing Touches.  It’s a good thing that Steve is a good sport!  But, back to work on the real reason for being in class!

Painting Canvas -Work in Progress

Making the Collage -Work in Progress

The next step was to cut the three canvases apart and reassemble them – just like we do in quilting.  We created a painted fabric collage from our parts.

Making the Collage - Work in Progress

Making the Collage – Work in Progress

It was fascinating to watch the various combinations emerge.  Great creativity in this room, inspired by an amazing teacher.

Stitching the Canvas - Lynn from Gallup

Stitching the Canvas – Lynn from Gallup

Once the collage was to the student’s liking, the pieces were stitched together.

Student Projects

Student Projects

Above are just a few of the student projects!  We all have enough work completed to make even more combinations.  Katie also taught us to make a Six-minute Zipper Bag and book covers for the not-so-lovely paintings.  What a great two days! Thank you, Katie, for being such a great teacher and Thank you, Steve, for being a good sport!

Painted Canvas Collage by Yours Truly

Painted Canvas Collage by Yours Truly

Here’s what I did in class!  I highly recommend this class for everyone, even novices!  It is way too much fun and the sewing skill level is easy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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International Quilt Festival – IQA Competition – Art Quilts – Whimsical

As you can imagine, I photographed MANY of the quilts in the various Art Quilt Categories, so many in fact that I will have to show them for a few posts.  I tried to separate them into their categories, but was not always successful.  Next year, I WILL photograph the category marker too!  These were among my favorites of the entire IQA Show.

Alice's Kitchenby  Miki Murakami, Kawasaki-si, Kanagawa Pref, Japan

Alice’s Kitchen by Miki Murakami, Kawasaki-si, Kanagawa Pref, Japan

Simply charming, with its bright, brilliant colors and excellent interpretation of theme, Alice’s Kitchen won first place in this category.  Miki writes, “In the story of Alice in Wonderland, there is no kitchen scene; however, I think it would be fun if a kitchen appeared in the world of Alice.  So, I imagined such a kitchen in this quilt.”

Did You Wash Your Beak? by David Taylor, Steamboat Springs, CO

Did You Wash Your Beak? by David Taylor, Steamboat Springs, CO

If the picture in this quilt is worth a thousand words, this stitching says it all!  This beautiful piece by David Taylor won the Judge’s Choice award from IQA judge, Carolee Hensley.  He writes, “Birds have always been my favorite subject matter to turn into quilts.  I hope I captured the attitude of the mother bird as she looks appalled at her baby’s manners.  I spent weeks debating with myself over the background colors, and ultimately stayed true to Steve Byland‘s photograph.”

Artie Facts by Joyce Patterson, Ukiah, CA

Artie Facts by Joyce Patterson, Ukiah, CA

I think that I love dogs just as much as birds, and I found several that delighted me at this year’s show.  Artie Facts was a uniquely wonderful interpretation of the theme.  Joyce Patterson writes, “I have long known that dogs have their own set of rules and facts about how the world works.  So, faced with a Mendocino Quilt Artist’s challenge to create a quilt based on the theme Artifact my mind went to dog facts.  Artie is the representative of the dog world and these are some of the known dog facts.”

Mt Ruffmore by Pauline Salzman, Treasure Island, FL

Mt Ruffmore by Pauline Salzman, Treasure Island, FL

There were several quilts that focused on dogs at this year’s show; almost all were whimsical.   Pauline Salzman writes, “These are the President’s dogs:  Bo, buddy, Barney, and Heidi.  Man’s best friend transcends all political party affiliations.”

Fanicful Flora by  Lois Podolny, Tucson, AZ

Fanciful Flora by Lois Podolny, Tucson, AZ

This fanciful floral arrangement in bright, bold colors epitomizes whimsy!  Lois Podolny writes, “This is a fantasy flower arrived at by starting with random shapes and seeing where the journey would take me.  It was inspired by a class with Jane Sassaman.”

Tutti Frutti Main Street by Susan Bleiweiss, Upton, MA

Tutti Frutti Main Street by Susan Bleiweiss, Upton, MA

This quilt by Susan Bleiweiss is just plain fun!  The judges liked it too and awarded it an honorable mention in the IQA competition.  Susan writes, “Part of my ongoing “Tutti Frutti” series of art quilts celebrating the use of vibrant color and whimsical imagery.”

The Birders by Suzanne Marshall, Clayton, MO

The Birders by Suzanne Marshall, Clayton, MO

Closing out this post, I saved my absolute favorite for last.  I simply adore this quilt, in part because of the hilarity of the scene portrayed by the expert hand of Suzanne Marshall.  The workmanship is exquisite and I wonder what went through her mind as she created this quilt.  It was awarded 2nd place in the the Art-Whimsical category. Suzanne writes, “Creating a new and humorous composition, inspired by a manuscript from 1565, made me laugh while quilting by hand.”

 

More art quilts to come . .  .

 

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International Quilt Festival – IQA Competition – Applique

The quilts below are some of my favorites from the show.  Some are prize winners, while others are quilts that I found to be exceptional.  They represent more than one category of applique quilts.  I always admire those quilters who can make these exceptional quilts either by hand or machine applique.

Heralds of Spring by Joann Webb, Grain Valley, MO

Heralds of Spring by Joann Webb, Grain Valley, MO

Although not a prize winner, this quilt was one amazing piece of work.  I marveled at the detail in the blossoms!  Joann, writes, “My goal was to put all of my favorite spring flowers into a bouquet that will never wilt.  Flower sprigs are arranged as petals in one large flower head.  Mandalas were also an influence.”

Heralds of Spring - Detail

Heralds of Spring – Detail

Three dimensional applique was created by using ruching and off-the-cuff fabric manipulation.

Heralds of Spring - Detail

Heralds of Spring – Detail

Here, you can see more of the detail in the flowers.  I especially loved the Lily of the Valley, which was a common flower at my childhood home in Minnesota.

Designer Bootique by Holly Nelson, Comfort, TX

Designer Bootique by Holly Nelson, Comfort, TX

Here’s one of my favorites!  I saw this one a long time ago and actually wrote a blog post about this quilt by Holly Nelson, who wrote to ask permission to feature Flying Geese in one of the boots.  I was thrilled and honored.  Holly writes, “If some of our iconic quilters designed boots, what would the look like?  This is what I imagine they would come up with.”

Celestial Splendor by Rachel Wetzler, St. charles, IL

Celestial Splendor by Rachel Wetzler, St. Charles, IL

Rachel Wetzler’s choices of color drenched fabrics makes this one a winner.  I love the detail and the way the colors shade throughout the quilt.  She writes,”Canterbury Cathedral’s central tower ceiling served as the model for this geometric composition.  Known as Bell Harry Tower, this magnificent example of English Gothic architecture was designed by John Wastell and completed in the 15th century.”

Four Loons and Friends by Patricia Sellinger, Ann Arbor, MI

Four Loons and Friends by Patricia Sellinger, Ann Arbor, MI

Another of my favorites, Four Loons and Friends, won Honorable Mention in the Innovative Applique category.  The unique use of the medallion style, featuring appliqued birds that are realistically portrayed make this a show stopper.  Patricia writes, “This quilt pays homage to my love of birds, and my fondness for the symmetry founds in traditional quilts.  These are all birds that are found in my home state of Michigan.  The call of the loon in quite something to hear.”

Willow by Debra Crane, Marco Island, FL

Willow by Debra Crine, Marco Island, FL

I don’t quite know how the judges were able to make the decisions about which of these stunning quilts would be prize winners.  In my mind, each of them was a winner.  Willow, by Debra Crine, is an original design inspired by antique tapestries.  She writes, “Hand-dyed fabrics were used for the applique and fused to the silk background.  It was quilted with silk thread.  The applique motifs were inspired by Deb Kimball, and the border quilting designs were by Sharon Schamber.”

My Hope by Sachiko Chiba, Morioka, Iwate, Japan

My Hope by Sachiko Chiba, Morioka, Iwate, Japan

My Hope won Third Place in the Merit Hand Quilting category.  Sachiko writes, “I wish that many pretty flowers of hope bloom for all the districts his by an earthquake.  I hope the people can live in peace and quiet.”

Birds and Blooms, by Janet Watson and Kim Norton, Coldspring, TX

Birds and Blooms, by Janet Watson and Kim Norton, Coldspring, TX

Janet Watson writes about the colorful quilt she created with Kim Norton, “I made a few changes from the original pattern because that is what I do!  I love the birds so I added a few.  I rearranged blocks and added some color.  This was an opportunity to make my first perfect circles and I really enjoyed it.  This was a fun quilt!”

Love by Yuko Muakami Kousi-shi, Kumamoto-Ken, Japan

Love by Yuko Muakami Kousi-shi, Kumamoto-Ken, Japan

The attention to detail in this quilt is almost unreal!  Among the handmade quilts, either applique, piecing or quilting, the Japanese quilters far outshone their colleagues from other countries!  Their work has characteristics that are unique to their nation.  Yuko writes, “I would like you to look at the new quilt.  I hope you will be blessed with lots of happiness too.”

Letter Carriers by Janet Stone, Overland Park, KS

Letter Carriers by Janet Stone, Overland Park, KS

Mixing a touch of whimsy with a mostly traditional design, Letter Carriers won First Place in the Mixed Technique category.  Janet Stone writes, ” A love of basket blocks sparked the idea to try to create some by weaving bias strips.  An additional 26 pieced basket blocks in the border are embellished with 26 letters.  Prairie points, hand-covered buttons, and half-penny circle edging are just a few fun highlights.”

Wow!!!!

Stay tuned . . .

 

 

 

 

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International Quilt Festival – IQA Competition: Traditional Quilts – Sometimes with a Twist

Good morning!  As I continue to sort through the hundreds of photos that I took at International Quilt Festival last week, I discovered that I sometimes failed to capture the category in which the quilt competed.  A big duh on my part!  Note to self: Make sure you get that next year.  Below is an assortment of traditional, or traditional with a twist quilts that I particularly enjoyed.  Sadly, I can’t always identify the category.

Eureka, by Marilyn Badger, St. George, UT

Eureka, by Marilyn Badger, St. George, UT

I first met Marilyn Badger, in September 2013 when I was fortunate to teach classes in beautiful St. George, Utah.  Marilyn is well-known in the quilting world for her incredible machine quilting (watch for a future post all about Marilyn).  Her quilt, Eureka, won second place in the Merit Machine Quilting category at the show.

Marilyn writes, “This quilt was inspired by Jacqueline de Jonge’s Circle of Life quilt.  The Lone Star in the middle is surrounded by parts of Jacqueline’s design with my original flowers and borders.  Over 2,000 crystal beads were hand-sewn after quilting, and couching with Razzle-Dazzle was added to highlight some of my original quilting designs.”

Outta the Loop by Karen Marchetti and Eyvonne Smith, Port St. Lucie, FL

Outta the Loop by Karen Marchetti and Eyvonne Smith, Port St. Lucie, FL

How could I not just fall in love with this quilt instantly!  Might it be the use of bright, bold colors, the strong contrast, and the more subtle designs quilted into the background?  Karen and Eyvonne write, “We modified the Elements of Nature pattern by Jacqueline de Jonge by enlarging the pattern and adding various elements.  Additional stars and Flying Geese in the quilting create movement and add interest . . . a true collaboration between friends.”

Red Licorice by Linda McGibbon, Beaverton, MI

Red Licorice by Linda McGibbon, Beaverton, MI

This wall-size quilt has incredible detail combined with strong contrast and bright, bold colors, all of which I find very appealing.  Linda writes, “I used Pineapple blocks in a diamond shape.  I then used black background fabric in some of the pieces and Stitch in the Ditch  to make the design three dimensional.”

Together in a Friendship World by Geta Grama and Quilt.ro Group, Rasnov, Brasov, Romania

Together in a Friendship World by Geta Grama and Quilt.ro Group, Rasnov, Brasov, Romania

I was immediately drawn to this quilt by Geta Grama and friends.  It won Third Place in the Group Quilts Category.   I also believe it is the first entry that I have seen from Romania.  I visited Geta’s Blogspot page and enjoyed reading about her, “I am a passionate quilter living in Romania. Unfortunately, here quilting is an unknown craft to most people. I love to share my quilts with you!”  Take the time to check out her site.  I know you will enjoy reading about her and her work.

About their quilt, Geta writes, “This quilt combines traditional English paper piecing technique and an altered three-dimensional Grandmother’s Flower Garden with a mosaic background.  The 3-D effect is enhanced by the vivid colors of the flowers, which float over the large white ball.  Intricate quilting follows the flower patterns and flattens the background, contributing to the 3-D aspect of the quilt.”

Roman Tilles by Ann Petersen, Aurora, CO

Roman Tilles by Ann Petersen, Aurora, CO

This is one of the first quilts that caught my eye.  I found the detail to be extraordinary and enjoyed Ann’s use of a limited color palette that allows the more subtle painting and stitching in the background to flourish!  Below is a detail of the piecing on this quilt.

Roman Tiles detail

Roman Tiles detail

Ann writes, “My original center star, borders, layout, quilting designs and painting we added to a small piece started in a workshop by Norah McMeeking.  The quilting was inspired by Roman Mosaic tiles.”

What a great show!  It was a privilege to be among so many beautiful quilts!

Stay Tuned . . .

 

 

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International Quilt Festival, IQA Competition – Miniatures

The quality of the quilts entered in the two different IQA miniature categories, “Miniature” and “Art-Miniature” was absolutely mind-blowing!  I have combined the images from both categories in this post in order to condense the overall number of posts about Quilt Festival and to bring you images of my favorite quilts sooner.

Wind by  Masanobu Miyama, Chofu-City, Tokyo, Japan

Wind by Masanobu Miyama, Chofu-City, Tokyo, Japan

“Wind” won the Superior Thread Master Award for Thread Artistry.  What an incredible quilt!  The threadwork that creates the image draws one right into the quilt, where you could easily imagine being there with that happy dog on a windy day!

Masanobu says this about Wind, “My dog’s long fur was streaming in the wind while I walked her at the riverside.  I thought it might be fun to express the invisible wind with streaming fun, waving grass and so on.  The original micro-fused applique technique is applied to create the dog precisely.  I also hand-dyed almost all of the fabrics I used to match the color”.

Life on the Mesa by Mary Ann Hildebrand, Comfort, TX

Life on the Mesa by Mary Ann Hildebrand, Comfort, TX

This beautiful miniature won 1st place in its category, Art-Miniature.  Mary Ann wrote, “I participated in a challenge in which I was to interpret a quilt passed to me.  The quilt was a southwestern scene with a mesa in the background.  I chose to concentrate on the mesa and depict it as realistically as possible”.

Miniville  .  . .or It's 5 o'clock Somewhere by Karen Eckmeier, Kent, CT

Miniville . . .or It’s 5 o’clock Somewhere by Karen Eckmeier, Kent, CT

This stunning little quilt almost escaped from my camera lens and then I took a second look.  Wow!  What detail, and in such a small scale!

Karen Eckmeier writes, “Three days without electricity during a winter storm prompted me to start a collage project so small that it could fit only my living room table and be seen with my hiking headlamp!”

Miniville detail

Miniville detail

And what detail there is!  I still can’t quilt believe that Karen could create this diminutive piece with all this detail.  It was the 2nd Place winner in its category.

House in the Valley #5 by Laura Wasilowski, Elgin, IL

House in the Valley #5 by Laura Wasilowski, Elgin, IL

Third place was awarded to this whimsical piece, created by Laura Wasilowski.  She says that this piece is a view of her house as observed by a busybody bird!

Mission San Juan Capistrano by Sharon Schlotzhauer, Castle Rock, CO

Mission San Juan Capistrano by Sharon Schlotzhauer, Castle Rock, CO

The threadwork in this piece was amazing.  Sharon Schlotzhauer writes, “Founded n 1776, San Juan Capistrano is the seventh of the California missions and is designated the “Jewel of the Missions”.  This quilt depicts one of its lovely courtyards.  I visited this historical site as a child and again earlier this year, which was the inspiration for this piece”.

Eagle Eyes by Margery Hedges, Kingwood, TX

Eagle Eyes by Margery Hedges, Kingwood, TX

Of course, it is nearly impossible for me to not photograph any of the quilts that feature birds, especially when as well executed as Eagle Eyes.  Margery Hedges writes, “I enjoy doing close-up views of animal faces, and this look of intense concentration makes you feel as if you are really face-to-face with this awesome eagle”.

Tranquil Swim by Melanie Marr, Houston, TX

Tranquil Swim by Melanie Marr, Houston, TX

Another masterful piece, Tranquil Swim features the incomparable Wood Duck, among nature’s most dramatically plumaged birds.  “This quilt was inspired by a photo taken of a Wood Duck at the Houston Zoo.  The ripples in the water made the perfect background with abstract patterns,” writes Melanie.

Dutch Flowerpots by Lahala Phelps, Bonney Lake, WA

Dutch Flowerpots by Lahala Phelps, Bonney Lake, WA

This traditional miniature won honorable mention in its category and captured my attention with the lovely contrast between the red and cheddar as well as the fine detail.  Lahala writes, “A favorite quilt of mine is Pots of Flowers pictured in the book, A Flowering of Quilts, by Patricia Cox Crews.  I thought why not try making a miniature Pots of Flowers quilt?  I designed my own and used a cheddar background seen in many Pennsylvania Dutch quilts”.

Betwixt and Between by George Siciliano, Lebanon, PA

Betwixt and Between by George Siciliano, Lebanon, PA

No miniature exhibit would be complete without at least one piece by George Siciliano, and the IQA exhibit featured two of his. He says, “This quilt is a micro-mini version (one-fourth the size) of my miniature quilt called Crop Circles.  My new, self-taught, silk techniques have enabled me to sew a one-inch square block with 49 individual pieces.  This quilt has over 2,874 pieces of 100% Dupioni silk fabric.”

Some Assembly Required by Gerge Siciliano, Lebanon, PA

Some Assembly Required by George Siciliano, Lebanon, PA

Closing out this post is George’s other entry that contains 4,860 pieces.  “When all the pieces of silk were laid out, and in order,” George wrote, “A funny thought crossed my mind.  In 1975, my partially-blind son was six years old.  We passed a flatbed tractor-trailer, and it was loaded with all the raw materials needed to build a house from roof trussed to flooring.  My son whispered under his breath, “some assembly required.”  These are my thoughts exactly.”

Congratulations to all whose quilts were accepted into these two categories.  The competition was intense.

Stay tuned . . .

 

 

 

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International Quilt Festival: Special Exhibits – Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative

Taking a short break from the competition quilts, I want to focus on the incredible work of one woman, Ami Simms, who started the Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative back in 2006.  Ami began this journey after her mom, Beebe, developed the disease, and she struggled to find medications and treatments for this terrible disease.

Ami Simms, Founder of AAQI

Ami Simms, Founder of AAQI

Ami had this to say about AAQI, “When I created the AAQI back in 2006, I never expected it to become so successful! I also never imaged how much work it would take to keep it going. What began as one person’s response to sorrow and frustration has grown into a national charity embraced by a large portion of the quilting community. More than 13,000 quilts have been donated, turning sweat equity into over $973,000 for research as of the beginning of Quilt Festival. For many donors these quilts were healing works of art which helped them grieve as they stitched for the greater good. Hundreds of thousands of people have seen the AAQI’s two traveling quilt exhibits about Alzheimer’s. Through this artistry came the realization for many that they were not alone on this journey of heartbreak; others understood, perhaps for the first time, what a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s really means.”

As some of you know, my own mom, Sylvia, was stricken with Alzheimer’s Disease and succumbed in November 2012 after and eight and a half year battle.  I have been active in the effort since the beginning.

Wednesday night, Preview Night at the show, the AAQI booth was hopping!

Priority Alzheimer's Booth 2013

Priority Alzheimer’s Booth 2013

And, by noon on Thursday, Ami and her cadre of dedicated AAQI volunteers topped their goal to raise $1,000,000!!!

“Together quilters have funded 17 research studies at universities and medical schools. More studies will be funded in early 2014. Because of the AAQI, scientists know a little bit more about Alzheimer’s than they did before. Hopefully this understanding will bring us all closer to a cure.”

Please check the link to the AAQI site to read more about Ami’s journey and that of all the others who have joined in the effort.  Way to go Ami and Co!

 

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