Monday, November 15, 2021

QuiltCon 2022 Artisan Cotton Fabric Challenge

I've been a reluctant to share my QuiltCon entries. 

When an Instagrammer started the hashtag #celebratemyquiltsubmission I couldn't bring myself to share what I'd made. I must be more sensitive about others' opinions than most quilters who post pictures of their entries and brazenly state "It doesn't matter to me if my quilt isn't accepted. I'm proud of it anyway!" I'm being honest when I say, "That's not me. Acceptance matters. Even if it means more than it should."

I dislike the scrutiny, and what I imagine as critical comments (though unheard) about my quilts. But this post is about one of those entries -  my "QuiltCon 2022 Artisan Cotton Fabric Challenge" quilt. (Rules are here.) Fabrics used had to be from the Artisan collection by Windham Fabrics.
Columns, 49½" X 55"

I don't care for them. While fabrics are meant to "glow" as light hits different colors used in the warp and weft (like Oakshott cotton), the shine wasn't there for me. Though, even before seeing the fabric I bought yardage to make a large quilt. 

Since seeing other quiltmakers' entries on Instagram, I'm prepared to learn (by December 15) that mine is a QuiltCon "reject."  Nonetheless, it was a good challenge for me, as I had to figure out how to make different shapes fit into specified dimensions, and learn that it isn't easy to re-interpret an artist's design. 

Dimanche, by Auguste Herbin (1950)
My design inspiration came from mid-Century modern art created by the French painter Auguste Herbin (1882-1960). His colorful geometric style, and this piece -  Dimanche (1950) - in particular spoke to me. You can probably see how my design built upon his.

It was more difficult than I thought to make each shape fit into particular dimensions. I'm not pleased with the colors I decided to work with either.  But I tried to make the best of it with extras - the addition of raw-edged selvedges from the fabric (see the pink horizontal stripe)...

... and big stitch hand quilting with size 8 perle cotton.

Walking foot quilting came first. Then I put a lot of hand-work time into it. 

Since I didn't much like the fabric, I used up nearly every bit to piece the backing, needing to add a couple stashed prints (allowed in the back) to puzzle it together. 

At least, because it's the size it is (precisely why I prefer to make useable quilts) I will be able to donate it as a "baby quilt."

I attempted to take my usual - and favorite - outdoor photos from our Bismarck palm. However, after dragging out the six-foot ladder, I realized that days of using the palm for styled photos are over. The palm is too big to reach the lowest frond. 😞 I'm totally bummed about that. 

Hubs, understanding my disappointment, offered to hold the quilt. Without a pretty backdrop (Bismarck palm fronds), it's just another picture. Though I appreciate his helpfulness, I must find a new outdoor place to take pictures. Linda


  1. I marvel at your fabulous creativity and I think your quilt looks fantastic. I love your addition of hand quilting and I'll bet it's created wonderful texture on your quilt. You never quite know what the judges are looking for, so my fingers are crossed for you.

  2. It’s so hard to work with, much less finish a quilt from fabric that doesn’t hit our style. I applaud you for finishing and entering. The manufacturer liked the fabric enough to print it so it’s very possible the judges will be like minded. I am wondering where the “modern” is in this fabric other than being a solid.
    Time to take the golf cart out for evening drives to find a nice spot for photos. Maybe a glass of wine to help? Wait, can you drive or be a passenger in a golf cart with alcohol? Nancy in MO

  3. Some young mom is going to love this quilt, and it will likely get hung on the nursery wall rather than snuggling baby. Well done.

  4. I like the hubbs holding display.
    This quilt is well done, a treasure, Linda

  5. Anyone can see the work you put into this quilt. I admire the fact that you are willing to stretch your comfort zone...I stick to what I love cuz I feel like I don't have enough time left to do everything I want to do! I hope you get a ribbon to prove that your handwork has been appreciated...and how nice that someone's little one will have this quilt to learn shapes and colors!

  6. I guess we can learn from everything we create...I have one of those what I think is a "fail" hanging in my closet waiting to be deconstructed and "saved"... just don't know how to save it yet. Repurposing your quilt as a donation seems like a perfect idea!

    1. Hello Susan! You're a no-reply commenter, so I'm unable to respond personally to your nice comment. But thank you for taking the time to say something. You're right! Even if we've been quiltmaking for dozens of years (as I have) there's always something that can be learned. I sure understand about having a "fail" hanging in one's closet! I too have a couple of these. "Deconstructed to save" is the right way to say it. I am sure none of us has a clue about what to do with with them. Hmm. Wonder if we should be swapping them, as a challenge for one another! Might be a good way to deal with them. :-) Thanks for your understanding and encouragement!

  7. So very awesome. The colors are nice. The hand stitching is fantastic.

  8. I think you did a good job of distributing the colors, shapes and details in your design. And the added texture of your quilting really takes it to another level. I wouldn't have thought about the issues of scaling you dealt with to get rows to fit. I admire your desire to take on challenges and learn new things. I pretty much just want to play with fabrics I love and remix them in simple ways. Wishing you luck with all your entries.

  9. Your quilt is great. The addition of hand quilting and some of the blocks have the lighter background is my favorite part.

  10. You rose to the challenge, which is what counts. I was blessed with parents who taught me to go my own way and give others' opinions the credit they deserved (or didn't). I understand other people are more sensitive, though. Good call to make it a usable size--I preferred the original MQG definition of modern, which included the idea that a modern quilt is a usable size, not an art quilt.

  11. Clearly you learned a lot from this quilt and it's really a stand out in my opinion. I can see the artist influence and working with the shapes must have been both fun and a challenge. The colors look more vibrant in the daylight photo. You added so many wonderful details and your work is, as always, meticulously done. And, despite your sensitivity, you took a lot of risks in both making and sharing your entry. Well done, Linda!

  12. It's much larger than I thought. The hand quilting is beautiful. It's hard to work on something when the colors don't speak to you.

  13. I have sympathy for you, working with fabric you didn't like. But you did a great job at making something interesting, and that keeps the eye moving around the quilt. This -- making a quilt from challenge fabric -- was something that happened to me once, so as a result, I don't often participate in fabric challenges (and we always buy way more fabric that we get free!). Glad your husband was able to help you hold your quilt--when I did photos for Road entry, I had to use a quilt rack in my bedroom to get the photos! (But it's only for a quilt entry). Good luck on your MQG contest entries!!


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