Reported by Susie Ziegler
So many terrific craft events come through my fair city of Chicago. Several of us Craft Critique reporters and editors live in this terrific urban area, and we recently attended the 2010 International Quilt Festival/Chicago to see glorious quilt artistry from around the world.
Detail of “Grid Growth” by Margie Davidson. She used sunprinting on her fabrics.
“Units 1” by Benedicte Caneill. The fabrics are monoprinted and then stitched together using a simple rail fence block pattern.
Best-In-Show winner Rosalie Baker with her quilt “Let’s All Spring Forward.” The red-eyed tree frog is so charming. Rosalie has hand-dyed, hand-painted, and hand-appliqued her fabrics. The quilting is done by machine, as are many of the quilts in modern quilt shows.
“Spring Revival” by Deborah Kemball. That’s Deborah in the photo; she won 1st Place! Her quilt is all done in 100% silk applique. She told us that she backs all the silk with very lightweight interfacing, and she prefers Gutterman silk thread for her applique stitches. Here is a detail photo. Can you see the shimmering fabric? Well, you might have to imagine it. It really is beautiful in person.
“Spring Field” by Akiko Kawat. These are dandelions in a green spring field. I agree with the artist that the first dandelions of spring are lovely. I’m not nearly so enthusiastic about them later in the summer.
This is just a sampling of the quilts we saw. The show takes place in a large convention center space. Half of the space is this art display; the other half is a large vendor section. Vendors were selling the latest in fabrics, fibers, patterns, notions, and tools. Also for sale were vintage and new quilts, and handwork from around the world. You can spend the whole weekend watching presentations and taking classes from talented teachers and artists.
This particular festival is presented by the International Quilt Association and they have an upcoming show this summer in Long Beach, as well as their HUGE annual show in Houston in the fall. Next year, sadly (for me), this Chicago show will be moving to Cincinnati.
I bet there is a local quilting guild show right in your area with very impressive quilts on display. I hope you try to attend a quilt show to see beautiful fabric artistry in person. Maybe you’ll be so inspired, you will enter your own quilt into the competition!