Wednesday, August 27, 2014

"Playing It" with the American Quilter's Society

It was another delightful experience at the American Quilter's Society Quilt Week in Grand Rapids, MI with 337 quilts from 33 States, and 7 Countries on exhibit, competing for awards and generally exciting the crowd. A Third Place Ribbon in the Wall Quilts-Hand Quilted category was awarded to "Playing It", 37" x 48" and I was the grateful recipient.    
Playing It hanging in the exhibit hall in Grand Rapids, MI
This quilt was a fun challenge. I consider it a composition of small studies joined into harmonious disarray.  The sections, or studies, were the result of exploration and play with color and shape, then joined in an arrangement to please my eye. It is a nonrepresentational image where no obvious scene or theme was intended.  The viewer's imagination is activated to wonder and make meaning of the quilt. Bonnie Browning, AQS Executive Show Director, wondered about the variety in color of quilting thread used. Like most quilters, I like color and I'm not afraid to use it.  I often like the quilted line to blend with the cloth, but sometimes I like the thread to add color as an accent or surprise. A few tiny seed beads were sewn to the surface of the quilt to offer a little surprise. The hand quilting is accomplished by doodling with needle and thread meaning no marking or planning is involved.  

It was a happy surprise to run into friends from the Beaver Island Quilt Retreat.  Here we are "cutting up".
Malisa, Pam, Sharon
Karen Duling is another friend from the Beaver Island Quilt Retreat, and look at her shine with the author's presentation.  Karen recently published Quilting for the Paws, AQS Publishing, 2014 and she gave a trunk show of her charming quilts and talked about her inspiration.  Karen started making quilts about dogs and cats as fund-raising items for her community animal shelter, and her work grew to include thoughtful gifts for those grieving the loss of a pet, and to simply celebrate the joy our pets bring to us.

Congratulations to Joni Morgan, another "Liberated Quilter".  Her quilt "Autumn in Boyle County was juried into the Modern Quilt Challenge on exhibit in Grand Rapids.

My mom was my sidekick and agent at the show.  She enthusiastically offered to introduce me to people standing near my quilt!  Because she is really camera shy, no photos here. Our last activity at Quilt Week was to visit the Quilt of Belonging exhibit, and that was a moving close to our time in Grand Rapids.  I'll have more to share about that at a later date.  Finally, Happy 30th Anniversary American Quilter's Society!   pjb



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