Category Archives: Special Quilt Exhibits

The 2017 Cherrywood Challenge: Vincent van Gogh

Cherrywood Fabrics not only makes distinctive suede-like, solid colored, hand dyed fabrics. They also sponsor unique quilt challenges.

First was their Wicked Challenge in 2014.  Based on the hit musical, entries had to include specially dyed lime green fabrics (Cherrywood Wicked Greens) and black in their designs. The traveling exhibit was displayed at Road 2015 to much fanfare.

Cherrywood’s second challenge was The Lion King in 2016.  All entrants started with the same four hand-dyed Cherrywood fabrics (in golds and black) and designed their own original quilts within a 20-inch square. What made this theme especially significant was that 2017 is the 20th Anniversary of The Lion King musical. The traveling exhibit began 2017 at Road to California and will end its tour in November 2017 at the Minskoff Theatre in New York.   

During Road to California 2017, the next Cherrywood Challenge was announced – and it’s not based on a musical. Instead, the 2017 Cherrywood Challenge is a tribute to Vincent van Gogh, one of the world’s beloved artists. Entrants are encouraged to use Vincent van Gogh’s paintings as inspiration to think “outside the box” in creating new fiber art.

As with Cherrywood’s other challenges, each entry must include three official Cherrywood fabrics (this time they are the van Gogh Blues) and black. The quilt must “read” blue; 60-70% of the quilt top must be in blue hues. Accent colors may be used but they have to be Cherrywood fabric.

The final size of the quilt is 20” x 20” consisting of a top, a middle and a backing with a maximum thickness of one inch.  Any technique or fabric manipulation is acceptable as long as it maintains the color and character of a textile quilt. Embellishments may be added, with the exception of glitter, but must stay within the 20-inch size. No sleeve is required.

The cost to enter the challenge is $45.00 and includes the registration fee, shipping, return shipping and one fat quarter of each of the required fabrics.  Photos of the entries must be received by Cherrywood by 11:59 PM on August 1, 2017. Finalists will be announced and notified by email on August 11th. Finalist quilts are to be sent to Cherrywood Fabrics by August 25th. And then on September 1st, the winners will be announced as well as the quilts that will be included in the traveling exhibit.

Cash prizes totaling $1,000 is being offered to the winners.  Awards will be given for first, second and third place:

First Place – $700 Gift Card

Second Place – $200 Gift Card

Third Place – $100 Gift Card

The van Gogh Cherrywood Challenge Traveling Exhibit will debut November 1, 2017 at International Quilt Market and Festival in Houston, Texas. It will travel to quilt shows for at least one year through 2018, including at Road to California. We can’t wait to see all the creativity in this exhibit.

For more information regarding The van Gogh Cherrywood Challenge 2017 or with Cherrywood Fabrics, please visit their website.

Meet The Quilters Behind The Cherrywood Lion King Exhibit

Road 2017 was the second stop for the Lion King Cherrywood Challenge sponsored by Cherrywood Fabrics.

Cherrywood also produced a book about the exhibit, featuring each quilt and giving insights into each quilter’s design ideas and methods for their contribution. 

During the show, Cherrywood held two book signings at their booth with some of the quilters whose quilts were featured in the exhibit and the book. It was a great opportunity for guests to meet these talented quilters and find out more about their work.

Sandra Hankins from Lake Elsinore, California, created Simba. She has seen the Lion King musical 5 times!! “It is my favorite play by far,” remarked Sandra. She chose Simba because he is her favorite character. “He had to learn hard lessons to become the Lion King.”

Wim-O-Weh is the title of Tiffany Hayes’ piece. Named after one of the songs in the play, Tiffany came up with the idea for her quilt when she heard and watched one of her favorite bands, The Fulcos, play the song. Wim-O-Weh is paper pieced. The design was inspired by her daughter’s fiancé’s tattoo artwork.

From Acton, California, Anna Koelewyn likes to do improvisational piecing that is very abstract. She felt that it was hard to choose a lion to represent, so she decided to focus on the feel of the land and the umbrella trees for her piece, Serengeti.

Scar-Pretender of the Throne is the first quilt Eileen Paine of Riverside, California has ever finished!! She has been making Hawaiian quilts with applique for five years before starting this project. Eileen decided to “jump in with both feet” and wanted to go to “the dark side” of the play. The face of her “Scar” is asymmetrical to give the illusion of how he was “scarred.”  

“I loved the whole challenge,” commented Rod Daniel who came from Placitas, New Mexico to talk about his quilt, Sunset Maiden. The idea for his piece came from looking at African masks. Like Anna, he wanted to focus on something other than lions. And because he loves the skin tones of African-Americans, he went “crazy with color” with his design.

The next Cherrywood Challenge is Van Gogh’s Starry Night. Exhibit coordinator and Cherrywood Fabrics owner, Karla Overland, said that most of the fabric they brought to Road for this upcoming challenge was sold out so they are encouraged with the initial response. To learn more about this challenge and Cherrywood hand dyed fabrics, please visit their website.

 

 

Modern Quilting Unplugged

Modern Quilter and Founder of the Los Angeles Modern Quilt Guild, Latifah Saafir, presented a Lecture and Trunk Show during Road to California. She gave the history of Modern Quilting then shared some of her modern quilting work along with some insights on why modern quilting is unplugged i.e.; “cool, hip, original, fascinating, and likeable.”

The 2 A’s of Modern Quilting

Attitude and Aesthetic

One’s Attitude and Approach to modern quilting should be: “I don’t have to be perfect to start.” Never be afraid to try. With Latifah’s first modern quilts, she followed a pattern.Latifah Saafir Modern Quilting

Experience brought confidence, where today she makes her own designs. Latifah’s signature pattern is the Glam Clam: clam shells blown up to 12 inches.

The Aesthetic of Modern Quilting has distinct qualities that incorporate:

Functionality – Made to snuggle, give as a gift or as artwork

Asymmetry

Reinterpreted Traditional Designs- Take traditional blocks and motifs and mixes it up

Minimalism and Simplicity – which are harder to designLatifah Saafir Modern Quilting

Negative Space

Modern Art and ArchitectureLatifah Saafir Modern Quilting

Improvised yet Intentional Construction

Bold colors, on-trend color combinations, and graphic printsLatifah Saafir Modern Quilting

Gray and White is neutral

Incorporates Solids – cheaper to use and can better express the quilter’s voice

Binding can also be used to frame the quiltLatifah Saafir Modern Quilting

When quilting her own quilts, Latifah shared that she “loves walking foot quilting” with her domestic machine. She encouraged the guests that they “can do it” too. Her tips for walking foot quilting: “Be Conscious. Take Breaks. Have your machine on a table.”

In the end, Latifah pointed out, modern quilting is like all quilting: “cutting fabric and sewing it together like everyone else.”

   

 

Meet Latifah Saafir And Modern Quilting

Starting off Road to California 2017’s Special Events was a Lecture and Trunk Show featuring Latifah Saafir, modern quilter, pattern designer, and founder of the Modern Quilt Guild.

Her special presentation was held Tuesday evening, January 17th at the Ontario Museum of History and Art in conjunction with the exhibit being held there, Modern Quilts Redesigning Traditions.  

The lecture began with Latifah giving a brief history on how the modern quilting movement began in 1998 when it became “cool” to use solid fabrics again. Quilters Gwen Marston and Nancy Crow

along with the Quilters of Gee’s Bend and Yoshiko Jinzenji,

were some of the artists that championed the return to using solid fabrics. The first modern quilt book was published by Weeks Ringle and her husband Bill Kerr also around 1998.

Latifah shared that she “always loved quilts.” While she learned how to quilt from her mother when she was 6 years old, when Latifah got her first sewing machine at age 10, she sewed mostly garments. At age 15, she checked out quilting books from the library. Their designs were basically the traditional, Amish quilt kind. In 2008, Latifah saw her first modern quilt and said to herself, “I can do this.”

About the same time Latifah made her first modern quilt, the modern quilting community was also getting started. First, an informal Flickr Group was formed in 2008 to share digital images of the work being created by modern quilters. It was an instant hit among younger quilters. Then, after the Long Beach Quilt Show in 2009, Latifah started the Los Angeles Modern Quilt Guild with 25 members.

Other areas around the world wanted to duplicate what the LAMQG started and today there are over 100 guilds worldwide.

It’s been almost 10 years since the modern quilting movement began. When asked where does Latifah see the future of modern quilting going, she replied, “Who knows–!!” One thing is for sure: the interest and skill level in modern quilting continues to increase.

Jan has been a modern quilter for 7 years and belongs to the Temecula Valley Modern Quilt Guild. She was attracted to modern quilting because it is “non-judgmental.”  She is self-taught, doesn’t use a pattern and just “figures things out.”

(ltor) Sharon and Jan

Sharon came from Los Angeles and has been quilting just 6 months. She takes classes with Jan. She started quilting after she retired from nursing and has made one baby quilt. She heard about the lecture through Road’s social media and was interested in learning more about modern quilting.

Debbie, Maria, and Pat all belong to the Inland Empire Modern Quilt Guild. The guild was started in September 2016 by a group of friends and now has 20 members. They came to the lecture and trunk show because they are big fans of Latifah.

Even long-time quilters are turning to modern quilting. Denise lives in Orange County, California and has been quilting for over 30 years. She considered herself a “traditional, Quilt-in-a-Day quilter” and fell into modern quilting because she wanted to do something “different, new, refreshing and colorful.”

Latifah’s signature “Glam Clam”– clam shells blown up.

Latifah hopes modern quilting will continue to inspire quilters to take ownership for their work and most of all, that it will inspire a new generation of young sewers.

Special Exhibit: Modern Quilts Redesigning Traditions

Road to California has partnered with the Ontario Museum of History and Art to present a special exhibit that explores the modern evolution of traditional quilt patterns.

The idea for the exhibit came from Carolyn Reese (owner of Road to California) and Pam Overton (President of Southern California Council of Quilt Guilds). They thought a Modern exhibit would interest not only Road to California patrons but Ontario Museum of History and Art patrons also.

The exhibit was curated by Georganna Hawley, immediate Past President of the Ventura Modern Quilt Guild. She began calling for entries after Road 2016 and resulted in over 80 quilts from talented quilters from the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom.

The Modern Quilt Movement is nearly 10 years old. It started in the early 2000’s with an online community of like-minded quilters. These artists were inspired by modern design, bold colors, extensive use of negative space and innovative piecing. Today, Modern quilters continue to embrace a style usually not seen in traditional quilts.

Most traditional pieced blocks are based on geometric shapes: squares, triangles, and circles. Early patchwork quilters used geometric blocks because they were easily fitted and sewn together, and could be arranged into hundreds of patterns. As individual quilters gained skill and confidence, the shapes and combinations became more challenging.

Today’s modern Traditionalist quilters choose original quilt patterns from the 1920’s – 1950’s and shrink them, enlarge them, move them off-grid, or simply improvise the piecing to redesign the block.

The exhibit opened to the public December 1, 2016 and will stay open until Road to California closes on January 22, 2017. The museum is opened limited hours and the exhibit is free.

Modern Quilts Redesigning Traditions will also serve as a backdrop for a Lecture and Trunk Show hosted by modern quilter, Latifah Saafir on Tuesday night, January 17, 2017 and a Meet and Greet for Modern Quilters on Friday, January 20, 2017. both events are from 6:00 – 8:00 PM and are free to the public. Reservations however must be made by calling the museum at (909) 395-2510.

Road 2017 Special Exhibit: Altar Offerings

Altar Offerings, a Special Exhibit curated by Jane Tenorio-Coscarelli, is an exhibit that honors “our loved ones.”

In Mexico, the tradition of altar building is practiced for Dias De Los Muertos Or Day of the Dead which occurs October 31st to November 2nd each year. This multi-day holiday focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died, and help support their spiritual journey. Building altars helps celebrate these lives.

Jane had the opportunity of taking an altar building class in Houston, Texas.  Being a fiber artist, she decided to design her altar in fabric. Later, when Jane was teaching her annual August retreat, she had her students create quilts for this exhibit.

Each quilt in the exhibit had to incorporate elements found in altar building which include motifs that symbolize earth, wind, fire, light and smell. In addition, the favorite food, personal items and activities, religious items and photos of the deceased loved one were also added.

Of the quilts in the exhibit, Jane said, “I am very proud of how each person expressed their loved ones. And many said it help them work through their passing. They turned their grief into a creative energy.”

After Road to California, Jane hopes the exhibit will be shown at future quilt shows in 2017.

Jane Tenorio-Coscarelli is a renowned author, artist and quilter and is the creator of 1/4 Inch Publishing. For the past 20 years, she has successfully designed and produced her product line of books, patterns, fabrics and notions. To learn more about Jane, please visit her website.

Jane’s Self Portrait

Road 2017 Special Exhibit: Kona Color of the Year 2016

Do you know the Kona Color of the Year?

Each year, Robert Kaufman creates one new, LIMITED EDITION Kona Cotton Color of the Year, which is only available within that designated year and retires at its conclusion. The 2016 Color of the Year, Highlight, is a bright and refreshing yellow hue that can be a delicate addition, a bold accent, or steal the show altogether.

When the Color of the Year was originally announced, Robert Kaufman had a block contest on Instagram (#konaCOTYchallenge). The challenge was so popular that the idea was further developed into an exhibit of mini quilts. Robert Kaufman partnered with 60 of the industry’s leading quilters to bring about the Kona Color of the Year Special Exhibit.

Each of the designers have a special relationship with Robert Kaufman. Some are Robert Kaufman fabric designers, some have made quilt patterns for Robert Kaufman in the past, and others are artists the company admires. Robert Kaufman tried to pick people with a wide range of quilting styles so that the exhibit would be a well-rounded showcase of amazing quilts.

The exhibit is made up of 60 diverse quilts for every kind of quilter. The designers of the exhibit were each given an assigned color palette to create their 20” square mini quilts.

The company’s favorite part of the exhibit was seeing each of the quilts for the first time as the makers sent them back to them. It was such a special surprise to see what the designers created and how they used the Color of the Year, Highlight. The only direction was given the quilters was to make something truly “them” and they all created quilts that showcase their amazing styles and personalities.

Kona Color of the Year 2016 first debuted at the Fall 2016 Quilt Market/Festival. After it’s showing at Road to California, the exhibit will be displayed at QuiltCon in Savannah, Ga (Feb. 2017); Quilt Festival Chicago (April 2017) and AQS Quilt Week in Paducah, KY (April 2017).

 

 

Road 2017 Special Exhibit: Mountain Mist Historical Quilt Mid-Century Quilts Made New

Where would a quilter be without batting?

Cotton batting by the Stearns & Foster Company has been a staple of quilt making since the 1800’s. Long trusted by quilt makers for its strength and cleanliness, the batting needed a sales boost as the quilt revival of the 1920’s and 30’s took hold. Sales manager, Fritz Hooker, launched an ingenious marketing campaign to make Mountain Mist batting more attractive to quilt makers. His plan was to revamp the batting wrapper by adding colorful quilt designs that he developed in to the Mountain Mist pattern series. Fritz worked with professional artists as well as seasoned quilt makers to vet his choices.   After a pattern had been tested for design and work-ability, a model quilt was made. By 1950, there were about 100 Mountain Mist patterns and a model quilt for each design.mountain-mist-logo

Through the years, the company has shared these model quilts in various ways. They were loaned to state and  county fairs, fashion shows, and quilt events. On the 150th anniversary of Stearns & Foster, the complete set of quilts was displayed at the International Quilt Festival in Houston in 1996.

In 2012, the Mountain Mist sample quilts were acquired by Quilt House at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln along with other materials from the company.

fanquadfinal

This Fan Quadrille quilt pattern was first made available by Mountain Mist in 1942. The original is on the left, and an update (which requires no curved piecing) by Linda Pumphrey is on the right

 

The Special Exhibit, Mountain Mist Historical Quilt Mid-Century Quilts Made New, is curated by Linda Pumphrey. She authored the newly released book with the same title. mountain-mist-book

The book contains variations of 14 original quilts designed and released by Mountain Mist in the 1930’s and 1940’s on the back of the Mountain Mist batting wrappers, Some of the quilt designs were updated and simplified and some remained the same as the pattern using current fabric lines. The various designs speak to quilters of today just as they inspired quilters of the mid 1900’s.

This is the second time that quilts made from the Mountain Mist pattern collection have been shown at Road to California.   In 2009, quilts from the collection were shown to over-whelming response. This “new” exhibit is being shown for the very first time at Road to California 2017.zigzag1

In addition to sponsoring this Special Exhibit, Fibrix, LLC, the parent company of Mountain Mist, will be donating 800 batts to support the  Roadies Give Back Event on Saturday evening, January 21st as well another 200 batts for another Road initiative. Road to California is appreciative for all Mountain Mist is doing to support quilting at Road 2017.

Road 2017 Special Exhibit: The Lion King Cherrywood Challenge 2016

At Road to California 2015 – The 20th Anniversary Show, Cherrywood Fabrics presented their popular The WICKED Cherrywood Challenge special exhibit.Wicked logo

Road 2017 will be hosting Cherrywood’s second in their series of quilt challenges, The Lion King Cherrywood Challenge 2016. Explains Karla Overland, owner of Cherrywood Fabrics, “The Lion King was a natural progression after doing “WICKED” for our first challenge. The resources we had for that first challenge led me to the Lion King and it happens to be their 20th Anniversary in 2017. They will be showing off some of the quilts at the Minskoff Theatre in November of 2017.”Cherrywood Lion King

The exhibit is made up of 120 small art quilts that were submitted for The Cherrywood Challenge 2016. When displayed together, they create a dramatic (jaw-dropping) visual experience that covers 80 feet. The cohesive color, size, theme and texture of the Cherrywood fabric makes it easy for the viewer to see the entire exhibit as a whole. The excitement of discovering all the details of each little work of art makes this collection unforgettable.Cherrywood1

All entrants started with the same four hand-dyed Cherrywood fabrics (golds and black) and designed their own original quilts within a 20-inch square. Accent colors had to be Cherrywood as well, but techniques were wide open. Karla said that they “saw many examples of thread painting, coloring with pencils and pens, Zen tangle drawing, intricate piecing, all kinds of appliqué methods, and even tatting. Images of the final squares were uploaded to ArtCall, a website designed for the jury process. A panel of three jurors was enlisted to select the final quilts for the exhibit using a point system. It was an extremely difficult process considering there were over 300 quilts entered from 41 states and 9 countries. After the 120 finalists were sent to Cherrywood, three prize winners were chosen as well as a “Cherrywood Choice” and 20 “Disney’s Choice” quilts – they could not decide on just one!

Compared to the WICKED exhibit, The Lion King Challenge is slightly larger than WICKED which had 114 quilts. Since there were so many more submissions for The Lion King Challenge, Cherrywood was able to get the cream of the crop and select exactly what they wanted for the traveling collection. It was interesting to Cherrywood to see the wide variety of interpretations, skill level and workmanship.

The exhibit made its debut at AQS QuiltWeek Grand Rapids in August 2016. After traveling with AQS in the fall, it will be shown at International Quilt Market and Festival in Houston, Texas. The 2017 season kicks off with Road to California. After Road 2017, the exhibit will continue on to 13 other locations, ending up at the Minskoff Theater in New York City.Cherrywood Exhibit.left

Cherrywood has been able to already meet several of the artists who worked on the exhibit. While each quilt has an artist statements that adds to the quilt, Karla remarked, that hearing “them tell their stories in person is the best part of this adventure. We did get submissions from well-known quilt artists, and yet several people said they had never tried a challenge, or had never shown their work in public, and some had just started quilting!” Karla was able to meet the first place winner, Jill Cranford, and her family. Karla said that Jill “was a young woman who had sewn her whole life and was quietly teaching herself quilting on her own. I was so impressed with her workmanship from the design concept which has many layers, to the perfect stitching, both machine and hand. It is good to see up-and-comers in the quilting world.”

Cherrywood JillCranford.mom

First place winner Jill Cranford and her mother.

As with any quilt challenge, the intent of this project was to allow people to push themselves beyond what they are used to; try working with colors and fabrics they normally would not have chosen; and grow creatively. As Karla observed, “It is not easy to put yourself out there.” A photo book of the exhibit has been created to give the artists a chance to have their work published and be part of a timeless collection.

What will be Cherrywood Fabrics next quilt challenge? They will be announcing the new theme at Quilt Festival in Houston. Stay tuned…

 

 

Two Ways To Show Off Your Quilt for Road 2017

Do you have a quilt that you have been working on that you would like to share with the public?

Road to California 2017 is offering two opportunities for quilters to enter their quilt designs – one that we are known for and a new one for quilts to be part of a special exhibit.

First, there is Road’s annual Quilt Contest. For 2017, quilters have the chance to vie for prize money totaling $90,000. Once again, Gammill is sponsoring the Best of Show category, offering $10,000 for the top prize.

Best of Show Road 2016 - Silk Road Sampler by MelissaSobotka

Best of Show Road 2016 – Silk Road Sampler by MelissaSobotka

Road receives hundreds of entries each year in their annual contest for the fifteen categories.  In order to qualify to enter, quilts have to have been made since January 1, 2015 and could not have been entered in a Road contest previously. The quilts have to been made with three distinct layers and no pre-quilted fabrics can be used.

2016 Outstanding Modern Quilt by Linda M. Thielfoldt

2016 Outstanding Modern Quilt by Linda M. Thielfoldt

Individuals can enter up to 3 quilts in the contest. Entry packets can be obtained on the Road website and must be received at Road’s office (either online or by mail) no later than October 3, 2016. Entrants are notified by November 28, 2016 if their quilt is chosen for the competition.  Quilters then have until December 23, 2016 to ship their quilt to Road’s office.

2016 Director's Choice by Kathy McNeil

2016 Director’s Choice by Kathy McNeil

Judging for the contest will take place on January 17, 2017. Besides the top prizes, judges also consider three winners for each of the categories offered. All winners are notified the evening of the 17th.

2016 Outstanding Traditional Quilt by Bethanne G. Nemesh

2016 Outstanding Traditional Quilt by Bethanne G. Nemesh

For more information on our 2017 Quilt Contest, please visit our website.

If you have a modern design quilt that you are proud of, perhaps you might consider entering it in the Special Exhibit, Modern Quilts – Redesigning Traditions. While no prize money is being offered, accepted quilts earn the prestige of being included in this special display.jpgMQRTLogo_FINAL-300x244

The exhibit will be shown at the Ontario Museum of History and Art in Ontario, California, December 1, 2016 through January 22, 2017 – which includes time during Road 2017.

Modern Quilts: Redesigning Tradition, explores the modern evolution of traditional quilt patterns. Entries must adhere to the exhibit theme: traditional quilt blocks redesigned into a quilted item displaying Modern Quilting aesthetics. The traditional block used as inspiration must be identified by its commonly used name on the entry form.

Not Your Grandmother’s Wedding by Pauline Saltzman

Not Your Grandmother’s Wedding by Pauline Saltzman

Submissions considered for acceptance to the exhibit include quilts, bags, pillows, and table coverings. All entries must consist of three distinct layers: top, middle layer and backing and must be quilted by hand and/or machine. No entry can exceed 96” wide. Due to shipping restrictions, quilted upholstered furniture will not be accepted.

Square in a Square by Christa Watson

Square in a Square by Christa Watson

The deadline to submit entries is August 15, 2016. Accepted pieces will be notified by October 1, 2016. Interested sewists can request detailed information and an entry form from Guest Curator, Geroganna Hawley at ghawley@ontarioca.gov

Road to California is looking forward to all the submissions for both of these events. What quilt will you be entering for Road’s contests?