Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Two Big Winners at the Houston Quilt Festival

Sue McCarty of Roy, Utah, who did the fabulous Tolkien quilt from last year, won big again this year with "Meditation", which won the "Superior Threads Master Award for Thread Artistry"($5000). Last year Ms. McCarty won a similar prize for Tolkien, PLUS the Viewers' Choice award. Her Tolkien quilt still ranks as the single most amazing quilt I've ever seen anywhere, but the quilting on her "Meditation" really rocks too. 8)

My other favorite of the big winners was "Tea with Miss D." by Sandra Leichner of Albany, Oregon. Ms. Leichner's quilt is simply charming! "Tea with Miss D." won the Fairfield Master Award for Contemporary Artistry ($5000). This rather unassuming little quilt is incredibly special in so many ways.

Let's start with the back for a change, shall we? Have you ever seen such a darling label? It's an invitation to a tea party!

She made realistic looking tea bags for the quilt by using both french knots and buttons, then covered them with organza. They look so real! The bowl of all the teaspoons are triple appliqued to give the illusion of depth.The attention to detail on this quilt is unbelievable. There's piping, buttons, embroidery, applique, and absolutely gorgeous quilting, yet it remains dainty and charmingly artless, with an "Oh this? It's just something I threw together last week." sort of appeal. Absolutely delectable!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Dear Janes at Houston!

I saw two exceptional Dear Janes at the Houston International Quilt Festival this past weekend. The first one was "Jane Through the Centuries" by Nancy Ryder, quilted by Cat Marion. You would recognize this stunning "Jane" in a heartbeat.

This traditional version was a premier member of the Texas Guilds' Award Winning Traditional Quilts, non-judged exhibition. I was very impressed by the skill level demonstrated by ALL the Texas ladies in this exhibition.

I didn't even recognize "Jeepers... It's Jane!" by Beth Schillig of Columbus, OH as a daughter quilt until I read the placard. What a stunner, and so impressively innovative. Ms. Schillig really made this Jane her own. It was placed appropriately enough in the "Mixed Technique" field, where it failed to take a ribbon, but won high praise from everyone who saw it.The colors were delightful and her technical ability was superb. There's nothing like making a Dear Jane to really hone those fine quilting skills. 8) Lovely!