I can now tell the complete story of my little green and purple quilt. First of all, it has a name, "Dahlia Revisited". And it was created for a very special reason. I made this quilt for the contest that Quilters Newsletter was having to celebrate their 45th Anniversay. The rules were simple, create a quilt that celebrates 45 years of quilting, make it 45"x45" and attach an artist statement explaining why the quilt represents 45 years of quilting. I found out a few days ago that I was chosen as a finalist and that my quilt placed in the top 5! I've won a great prize package and I found out my quilt will hang as part of a special exhibit for QN at the Quilting Live event in Atlanta next month!
I didn't even know anything about the contest until after our quilt show in April when I was catching up on some reading. The grand prize was a Bernina - which kind of caught my eye. I've never owned a Bernina and thought that would be fun. But I didn't know what to do that would represent 45 years until I did the math. I made my very first quilt 45 years ago - 1969!!
Here is my very first quilt - simply named "Dahlia". It's a Lemoyne Star with a gathered star flower in the center. Not a typical pattern for a first quilt - but it must have seemed like a good idea in 1969. There are 30 blocks, it's a generous queen size, and it's completely hand pieced! Not only are the blocks hand pieced, but all the sashings are hand pieced.
Lest you think that was easy, you can see here that I had a little bit of trouble. To make things more interesting, all the white fabric is a sheet. I guess I thought since the sheet worked so well on the front, I would use another one on the back!! True story - but remember it was the 70's and I had no clue what I was doing. (The quilting speaks for itself.)
In addition to having trouble doing the hand piecing, it seems I also had trouble with the applique. I wish someone would have told me to match the thread. Guess I had a lot of white thread lying around LOL!!
But back to the challenge.... What led to my idea for "Dahlia Revisited" was when I realized that somewhere in my stash there were scraps from this quilt and I was pretty sure I knew where they were. Yes, I've been saving my scraps for 45 years!
I searched EQ7 for a pattern and couldn't find anything close. I also couldn't find anything similar on the internet. So I made a Leymone Star block out of my original 1969 fabric and tried to create my original block. After 45 years, I didn't have a clue how I'd made them so I had to just kind of make it up as I went along. It's not exact, but it's close enough. This block does look a lot like a block I found called Amish Dahlia. Does anyone know anything more about this block?
Well I eventually got the block made and then found lots of fabric from my stash that I could use. If you remember from previous posts, I agonized quite a while on the quilting, but in the end, I was pleased.
It's such a happy quilt. The colors were a little hard to match exactly, and I didn't know what to use for the vine. Suprisingly, what looked best was the original fabric. I found a long piece cut on the bias that I had used for the binding. It was perfect.
So here they are together. I am so thrilled that QN thought enough of my quilt to award me a finalist prize (even if it wasn't the machine LOL). When they told me that these quilts would hang as a special exhibit in Atlanta next month, I realized that "Organic Pink Pickles" will also be hanging as a special exhibit for the NYC MQG DWR Challenge at the same event. Two of my quilts hanging at Quilting Live!! It really doesn't seem real. Needless to say, I am planning a trip to Atlanta next month to see both my babies :)!!
It will be Sept. 11-13 if anyone is interested in going. I'll be there :).
Thanks for sharing in my joy,