Thursday, March 15, 2012

Day 3: Arizona Quilters' Guild Show 2012

Here are some more intriguing quilts from the weekend of March 9-10.  As you can see, a wide range of styles and techniques were on display. Write us a comment below, as we'd love to know which one is your favorite.

The Ladies at Sunset by Nancy Norrander - Judge’s Choice Award

Nancy Norrander said: “I pieced and quilted 'The Ladies at Sunset' for our new home in Arizona. It represents a very peaceful time of day and a time to reflect.” The faces of the Ladies were made of ultra suede, and the dresses, made of crushed velvet, stood out from the surface of the quilt.

Close-up photo, The Ladies at Sunset by Nancy Norrander

All three ladies are adorned with real turquoise necklaces as shown in the close-up photo above. We recognize this quilt as the "Navajo Treasures" pattern from Sara Cibelli, which can be seen at Flamingo Island Designs (Florida).

Vintage Roses by Barbara Polston, quilted by Terri Doyle. Blue ribbon: First Place Mixed techniques- Large.

Vintage tatted linen inspired this original design by Barbara Polston, showcasing painted appliqued roses. We were impressed by the tatting, which was appliqued around the center panel, shown below.  Tatting was common in our grandmothers' day and it is not often seen.

Close-up, Vintage Roses by Barbara Polston

All of the roses were painted off the quilt surface and turned into appliqué elements.  Barbara Polston says that the quilt concept lived in her head for almost two years. From start to finish, the quilt took 18 months to complete and was meant to be a competition piece.

Arizona Charm by Reni Dieball, quilted by Diane Pitchford

Tumbling Blocks were hand-pieced and hand appliqued to borders; there are hundreds of hand-pieced Y-seams in this quilt. Reni Dieball decided to arrange the blocks by colors. The  wide variety of fabrics were obtained by exchanges with her quilting and sewing friends.  The detail below shows some of the fun fabrics which Reni used: a scarecrow with sunflower, candy cane, sun with smiling face, spools of thread, and a family of geese can be seen.

Close-up, Arizona Charm by Reni Dieball

Hexagonal Spirals by Sue Whaples, quilting by Barbara Harrell

This colorful quilt is an elaborate variation of a snail's trail, based on an original design by John Flynn.  Sue Whaples used John’s Hexagonal Spirals templates to make all the arms of the snails tails match up; she made the quilt rectangular and added borders.

Close-up, Hexagonal Spirals by Sue Whaples, quilting by  Barbara Harrell

The quilting, which was done by Barbara Harrell, was really exceptional; as you can see in the photo above, each triangle in the spiral was quilted separately - an enormous amount of work. 

My Civil War Bride by Janice Hartman - Exemplary Hand Quilting Award

This is the first Civil War Bride quilt we've seen in person and it received an Exemplary Hand Quilting award (turquoise ribbon) along with a 2nd place (red ribbon) in the Applique-Large category. Janice Hartman used reproduction fabric collected over several years. The applique stitching, which was done with silk thread, was nearly invisible.  Hand quilting was done around each applique and diagonally in the borders. It was a stunning quilt that must have taken thousands of hours to applique. Our apologies for this less-than-perfect photo of a perfect quilt; the quilt was hung in a back hallway where the lighting was really challenging; the left side was in darkness and the right side was under a spotlight.

The Civil War Bride quilt pattern, designed by Corliss Searcey of Threadbear (Australia), is done in the style of The Bird of Paradise quilt in the American Folk Art Museum in New York City. It is distinguished by heavily appliquéd blocks of flowers & leaves, birds & butterflies, animals and fruit.


  1. I like the Ladies at Sunset and the civil war bride quilt!

  2. So difficult to choose a favorite! I absolutely love the vintage roses and ladies at sunset! I love the colors of the southwest, so probably the ladies at sunset would receive my vote at the end of the day. Thanks so much for showing us all these glorious masterpieces from this show!
    Pat in Oregon

  3. These are all truly remarkable, but I agree with Gill that the Ladies and the Civil War Bride quilt are so magnificient! Thank you for sharing these - it is like going to the show with your great photos.

  4. Thank you so much for showing! I love the one with the tatting and the roses!

  5. So pretty! Thanks for showing the tatting up close.


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