Thursday, December 22, 2016

QuiltCon Rejects/QuiltCon Accepted

On December 14 the MQG sent acceptance and rejection emails to those of us who entered quilts in QuiltCon East (February 23-26, 2017 in Savannah, Georgia). We were told that 1,500 quilts were entered; I have no idea how many were accepted. I only know that for the three quilts I entered, I received three emails. Two quilts were rejected and one was accepted. While you might think that I would be wildly thrilled, and I am very happy, the accepted quilt is the one I like the least.

Here are all three entries - full quilt shots, and one close-up, just as I submitted them.

Can you pick the one that was accepted?

I renamed my Make it Easier (a quilt I designed to teach newer quilters more about piecing) to "Basically Modern" because the quilt incorporates traditional blocks with modern characteristics - alternate grid layout, color, and negative space. And I quilted it dickens out of it! I thought that with Angela Walters being the 2017 QuiltCon keynote speaker - have you seen her elaborate longarm quilting?! - the judges might be accepting. I put a lot of extra work - ruler work, custom designs, and different thread colors - into this quilt to make it look like it was longarm quilted, even replicating designs from Kathleen Riggins, Angela Walters, and Christa Watson.
"Basically Modern," 52" X 58"

Triple Layer Nine Patch was my entry into the APQ Nine Patch Challenge. My design incorporates three layers of nine patch blocks. The first layer is a vertical nine patch; the second layer is a nine patch on the diagonal that's accomplished with transparency, a technique of seemingly overlapping colors; and the third layer is the quilting which is laid at another angle.
APQ Nine Patch Challenge, "Triple Layer Nine Patch," 45" X 45

"Lime 'n Luxe" was my entry for the Michael Miller Luxe Fabric Challenge. We had to use Luxe fabric (sort of satiny, slightly slippery and thin-ish to work with) and could add one other Michael Miller solid. I chose lime. A personal challenge was to quilt only straight lines, something that's not only not my style, but also because my theory is that QuiltCon judges look for simplistic quilting.
"Lime 'n Luxe," 34" X 35"

I wasn't wrong about that. 

Are you surprised to learn that the last one - Lime 'n Luxe - is the one that was accepted?!

To say I'm disappointed in the outcome of my entries is an understatement. I wish I could let it go as easily as some quilters are saying they do! I've spent more than a week recovering from my news, seeing some of the accepted quilts on Instagram (one quilter had eight quilts accepted!), and thinking about this.

And, as if this isn't enough... yesterday (December 21), I received an email from the MQG, inviting me to share my Lime 'n Luxe quilt in a book that the MQG is publishing! Good grief.

The Modern Quilt Guild has partnered with C&T Publishing to produce a book documenting the modern quilting movement from its early beginnings through 2017. At the heart of this book will be quilts from our members showcasing the best of modern quilting design and technique. Documented through beautiful, full-page photography, the Modern Quilt Guild walks readers through the rise of the modern quilt movement and the formation of the Modern Quilt Guild. From the earliest landmarks through 2017, they offer up more than 175 quilts that showcase the best and most pivotal quilts from the past 20 years of the modern quilt movement.

So here I've been, lamenting that - based on my QuiltCon rejects (check out that hashtag on Instagram to see some awesome quilts!) - I apparently don't "get" modern quilting, and then this quilt is chosen for a book! Go figure. 

I'm still of a mind to not enter QuiltCon again, but perhaps time will temper that.

Christmas is coming! Since we aren't going anywhere, and no one is coming to see us, I have days of sewing time ahead of me. A few quilts are on my want-to-make list. And isn't it nice to just work on whatever one wants? Yes it is. Linda


  1. Linda, you have to remember that you are not just a quilter. You are an ARTIST with a sewing machine. As with any art, beauty is very subjective. Having seen some of your work up close and personal, I think you probably just intimidate the judges with your skill and the beauty of your quilting. Shake it off. Most of us can only dream of having your talent!! MERRY CHRISTMAS!!

  2. I really love your 9 Patch challenge quilt. What a great concept! And the quilting on you sampler is amazing! Enjoy your holiday sewing time!

  3. Linda, I'm not a modern quilter (I like little Civil War era quilts) but I do enjoy your blog and really appreciate your honesty. I liked your 9 patch quilt idea.

    1. Hi Laurie! You're a "no-reply commenter," so I'm not able to respond to you personally, but thank you for your sweet comment about my blog. You know, I mostly write it for myself, to document each year which I then having printed into a book, so you do get the real me - honesty, and more personal information than perhaps you really want to know! Thanks for liking my nine patch challenge quilt too. That's a personal favorite, though another quilt I've no place to hang or use... the downside of living in Florida! Ha!

  4. As one of the Quiltcon rejects I can only say congratulations on having a quilt not only accepted, but singled out for special attention to be part of the MQG book. Like you, I feel your other two quilts are finer, and I know you enjoyed their creative journey much more, but apparently this Challenge quilt was what they wanted for Quiltcon. I don't think it means your others don't fit the 'modern' style. I've been blown away by the imagination, creativity and beauty of most of the quilts shared with the #quiltconreject hashtag on Instagram, and this has helped me feel better to be one, even though this is my third year and it's getting to be a habit! Be happy your excellent work has been recognised­čśü

  5. I think Di said it all--congrats on getting your quilt into their book--that's a big accomplishment. I look forward to seeing it there. (PS I'm not a fan of Michael Miller's solids, and now I know to pass this one by, too. Their fabric is more like a batiste than a quilting cotton, I think.)
    Overall, I am in awe of your quilts and your skills, so don't worry about what the others think!

  6. Congrats on the acceptance and the publication of your Lime 'n Luxe quilt! From what I've read on various blogs over the past couple of years, entering is quite a gamble. Maybe the Modern is a new enough concept that nobody is quite sure of what qualifies or what the standard for acceptance is? But your quilts are so wonderful regardless of where they travel or don't!

  7. Congratulations! I could tell the Lime 'n Luxe was accepted! It is very original and modern!
    You are a winner!

  8. I think Elizabeth (occasionalpiece) nailed it..don't worry about what others think! I entered my first and last quilt show this year and was totally disheartened with the ridiculous feedback (that my quilt had wavy edges- which it didn't!!) So I make for me now, what I like and what I like making! Your quilts and quilting are beyond awesome and its their loss! Keep making what makes you happy!

  9. One really wonders what the jury of this competition are looking for. One way is to study the accepted quilts and then make your next quilt accordingly. But wouldn't that be beside the point and boring as well? Looking at your three quilts it seems to me they don't want anything than straight line quilting. Wonderful news about your quilt which will be included in a book!

  10. I really like all of your quilts and although I haven't checked out the hastag yet (I will look) I'm hearing that a lot of people are really scratching their heads about this issue. I guess I won't have to worry in the future whether or not to enter into that show. I sounds like it wouldn't be worth it.

  11. I,too, am of a mind not to submit to QuiltCon again. I do enjoy attending and seeing the quilts, and I am hoping to get to say "Hi" to you in person in Savannah. However, the combo of not getting any feedback from the judges and the more-arbitrary-than-other-shows criteria for acceptance make entering a questionable use of time, money, and energy for me. Hope to see you in Savannah!


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