Thursday, February 26, 2015

I Went to QuiltCon2015...

...and all I got was this AMAZING ribbon!!!!!



All of the ribbons were handmade by Elizabeth Hartman and they were definitely coveted! She did a beauty job with them and I'm thrilled to have one.

Blackbird Fly QuiltCon winner
Photo credit: Stacey Murton, T-shirt that says "I touched a quilt and I liked it" by CatandVee

See that crazy, ridiculous grin? It was pretty hard to settle those cheeks down all weekend whenever anyone asked about Blackbird Fly or wanted a photograph with the quilt. I cannot tell you how incredible it felt to have this quilt recognized by the three talented judges, each of whom I admire (Carolyn Friedlander, Janine Vangool and Stevii Graves) .  This quilt is the very first one that I set out to make just for myself, after more than 10 years of quilting for others. It has a tremendous amount of meaning to me, so I loved it from the start.  
Winning first place in the Use of Negative Space category was a surprise for sure. The quilts were categorized by the judges, not the makers.  We simply entered them and they were placed into categories.  Here are a few things I learned through winning this prize:
  1. You do some of your the best work when you work for yourself, not to anyone else's specifications, rules or schedules. Caveat: I've done some of my favourite work for challenges.
  2. Aside from the top and bottom cream borders, all of the background surrounding the letters is negative space. I hadn't thought of that before. I chose the fabrics very deliberately so that the words would require thoughtful deciphering. One of the judges commented that the final design had an "effortless-ness" about it. I love that.
  3. When one door closes, another one opens. CQA did not jury this quilt into their national show last year because "I needed to go back and hone my quilting skills", "the fabrics chosen could have been higher contrast so that the quilt was easier to read" and "the design could have been placed better for maximum visual impact when the quilt was on a bed". Also, they wouldn't let me enter it into the Modern category because I'd used a pattern for the letter templates (Denyse Schmidt's Proverbial Quilt pattern). I'm so happy the MQG jury saw this quilt differently.
  4. Referring to #3 above, there is a definite need and relevance for the Modern Quilt Guild and QuiltCon. I used to resist, thinking that we should all just be quilters and our work didn't need labelling or definition based on a prescribed aesthetic. However after attending the show, I can honestly say I get it now.  Standing in the middle of that vast exhibition hall, looking to my left and right, every quilt I saw was a treat for my eyes. Every one.  That doesn't happen for me at traditional shows anymore. It isn't because I don't like or respect traditional quilting at all, I'm just ready for an update and a fresh approach.
Photo Credit: Felicity Ronaghan

Further evidence of non-stop grinning. This is Jim Kaldenberg, part owner of APQS , American Professional Quilting Systems, and sponsor of my generous prize. I was so happy that he was at the show and that I could thank him in person for his support of the MQG.

For a great overview post on the other prize-winning quilts from QuiltCon 2015, have a look here.

I'll just share one more sweet story with you now. My quilt was hanging directly across from the Steady Betty booth, where the proprietress' husband Gerald watched people looking at my quilt for 4 days. Gerald approached me on Saturday and wanted to tell me that he had so enjoyed watching people scan the quilt from left to right, working out the words and suddenly when the song dawned on them, breaking into a happy smile. Don't worry, I hugged him.  Then I hugged him again when he said he'd never in his life been to a show "quite like this one" and all he could think about was going home and making his second quilt.  I can't be sure, but I think Reginald is on the sunset side of 65 and he's definitely a good 'ole Texas boy. I hope I get to see him again at Spring Market.

29 comments:

Anne / Springleaf Studios said...

Congrats on the big win. I really enjoyed your quilt . . . such a great song. It was also nice to meet you briefly. Cindy Wiens (my roomie) shared your book one evening and I look forward to getting a closer look now that I'm home.

paulette said...

WOW!! I LOVE your quilt!! Good for you!! Perhaps your pattern will go into your second book!! I couldn't be happier for you!! And YES, your smile says it all!!
Big hug!
P

Tammy said...

Krista, CONGRATULATIONS! I absolutely love your quilt. Nice job!

Esther Dunn said...

Congratulations Krista!! A truly beautiful quilt...Glad you have found your "tribe" with the Modern Quilt movement where you your talents are recognized.

Cheryl's Teapots2Quilting said...

Congrats!

Debbie said...

Very cool! So pleased for you!

Lise-Lotte said...

Wow! That's SO exciting- congratulations...I love this quilt (and I love that my daughter plays it on her guitar as we're all getting ready for bed). Her sister can't hear it during the day...she says it makes her sleepy.
Lise-Lotte

Charlotte said...

congratulations, again. It was so lovely to see you :-)

Karen Ackva said...

Congratulations! What an amazing quilt!

pennydog said...

Woohoo!!

myBearpaw said...

Love this post, brought tears to my eyes!! So happy you won that ribbon Krista and so pleased we have this wonderful movement that 'gets us'xxx

Leanne said...

I so love this quilt and it was so wonderful to see it win this so well deserved recognition!

Elsa said...

Congratulations Krista!!! I've always loved that quilt ~ it's one of my favorite Beatles songs!

SarahZ said...

Such a sweet, happy for you post! Love seeing the super great ribbon! And love your quilt made just for you!!

Rene' said...

Congratulations Krista on your quilt winning 1st place!! I loved reading your post and appreciate the observations you listed regarding the quilt entry/judging/winning process. So nice as well that you were able to meet the sponsor of the award. I like also that Gerald took the time to talk to you and share all the nice comments your quilt received. Oh, and of course, I LOVE the fact that I met you finally at QuiltCon!!!

momiji said...

Congratulations on a thoroughly deserved win! I loved this quilt the moment I first saw it, and I'm so happy for you. Your story is also an excellent lesson on the need for persistence. Isn't it fascinating (albeit frustrating) how one judging panel can completely miss the point of a work, while another so totally gets it?

Dianne said...

Felicity's photo of you makes my heart so happy!
I love that you honour your "traditional" quilting roots as you explore and embrace the next step in the evolution of Quilting. As the speaker at our guild meeting so beautifully illustrated with her antique quilts, we stand on the shoulders of those who came before. Their love of the craft informs and inspires our passion and that thread will be passed on to the next generation who will no doubt bring their own influence to this age old process. How lucky are we to be a part of that thread?!!

Judy Cooper Textile Images said...

Congratulations! Well deserved.

Mardell Grayhek said...

Congratulations what an honor!

cat and vee xoxo said...

Great post Krista, I love your thoughtful words and insight into the show. I loved your quilt from when I first saw it online, and it was an absolute treat to see it in person. Congratulations on your ribbon, that's just so exciting. It was so great to meet you - a real highlight for me was meeting so many gorgeous people, and being surrounded by people who really "get" what I love to do - because they all love to do it too! The whole long weekend was such an inspiration, and I'm so grateful to have been able to go. Thanks for mentioning our (*holey*) shirt too :-) Enjoy your weekend, Cat x

Ginette said...

I saw all the pics and comments about your win on IG but this is a great post Krista! I love to hear the stories! I would've loved to be sitting near your quilt and see everyone decipher the words, how wonderful! Congratulations on your ribbon! And thanks for sharing QuiltCon vs a more traditional show... I've been wondering about that myself...

Pétra said...

I love this post and never got to say congratulations on your win!! I'm so glad you let me crash your lunch see you this summer!!

Barb said...

Congrats Krista, I admit I was one standing in front of your quilt at Delbrook wondering what it said,

MariQuilts said...

Congrats, Krista......so exciting!!!!

Teresinha said...

CONGRATULATIONS!!!
Teresinha

Live a Colorful Life said...

It was SUCH a treat to finally meet you in person, and see this fabulous quilt--one of my all-time favorites--in person too.

KaHolly said...

I had the pleasure of viewing your winning quilt in person and was very impressed. Congratualtions!

Paddy Anne said...

Congratulations on your Win :) I have been reading your blog for a number of years, off and on through various life-events, and its great to see that between writing your blog, writing a book and doing all that you do, that it seems summarized (somehow!) by this win at the show. Congrats again!

Poppyprint said...

Thank you Paddy Anne for your lovely comment - such a nice thing to say! I cannot reply to you directly, so hopefully you'll find this here.