Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The Quilt Show "Circuit"

I entered my first quilt show in 2010 at the suggestion of guild friends. At that time I was still relatively new to machine quilting, but I'd somehow managed to complete a king sized and a queen sized quilt. I did not even think about attempting to quilt them myself; rather, I sent them to a longarmer who'd been recommended by my local quilt shop. Imagine my surprise when I won two ribbons! One quilt received second place and the other an honorable mention. The judge's comments were tremendously helpful in terms of what I'd done well and what I needed to do to improve. I took my ribbons home and put my quilts on the bed and thought no more about it.

Flash forward to 2012. This is when I discovered that many of my guild friends entered the same quilts in several shows before "retiring" them. I decided to enter two of my quilts into more than one show and accrued several more ribbons, though not for the same quilt.

This spring, I entered 3 quilts into my guild's show and was thrilled to receive a first place ribbon and a NQA ribbon for one and a third place for another. This past weekend I entered the same 3 quilts into another local show and received a first place ribbon (for the same quilt I'd previously received a first for), a third place ribbon (for the same quilt I'd previously received a third for), and an honorable mention for the third quilt. I was over the moon.

Next week I'm entering two of those quilts (the first place and honorable mention) into another local show before "retiring" them to my walls. Fingers crossed.

I'm sure there will be many more quilts that I enter that will not be acknowledged with a ribbon, but I'm suggesting that if you don't already do so, that you enter your quilts as well. First of all, we wouldn't have shows to attend if quilters didn't take the risk of putting their work out there. Second, the judges' feedback is very helpful. Third, it's a wonderful feeling to hear others "oohing" and "ahhing" over your work. You'll never know unless you try.