Almost two years I joined the Modern Quilt Guild. At the time, I was living in Pittsburgh, PA and met a lovely group of ladies who came to the shop I was working at to use the classroom. I'd been quilting for several years, but had never found a group to share my passion with. The group didn't disappoint once I joined either. They were friendly, informative, encouraging and diverse. Every month's show-and-tell offered a smorgasbord of different views, interests, and creative curiosities. I miss these awesome ladies.
The Modern Quilt Guild also has an amazing online presence. Even if you're not near a guild, I would still encourage any quilter to join this national guild as an Individual Member for the sheer amount of resources online. They offer monthly webinars, a quarterly magazine, free projects and quilt blocks, plus the opportunity to meet other like minded quilters in the virtual world. And in these times of COVID-19, they've increased their webinars and free content to members. I love this guild.
One of my favorite aspects of the Guild at the national level are their quilt challenges. Every so often they have a challenge coupled with a fabric manufacturer and/or fabric designer. Should you choice to participate in the challenge, you're sent a small fat-eighth bundle of the challenge fabrics along with guidelines as to how to use them and a deadline. Then the designer chooses a winner(s). But the cool part, is getting to see all the variations based on just a handful of fabrics.
Last year I participated in a challenge sponsored by Riley Blake fabric. There were four fabrics, a mottled turquoise, blue and white stripe, blue dots on white background, and white dots on pink background. (BTW - this fabric was awesome to work with; a great weight and high quality fabric.) You can see my creation above, and I'ii post more pictures below. I call my quilt, "Spinning Stars." I used a LeMoyne Star block - something I've always loved but had never tried - and pieced the blue/white stripe to give the allusion of movement. I then quilted the three Stars with circles while the rest reflects the background straight lines, adding to the desired effect of spinning.
The stars are three different sizes: 20, 12 and 8 inches. The smaller two pieces were paper pieced because I love doing paper piecing. But I wanted to challenge myself too, so I did the biggest star as traditional pieced. The additional challenge of the LeMoyne star are the Y-seams. (A "Y-seam" happens when 3 pieces of fabric come together at a corner, and resemble the letter Y.)
The last picture is the quilt image from EQ8 (Electric Quilt version 8 is a quilt planning software). After I constructed the quilt, I ultimately decided to remove the border, and used a quilt facing instead of quilt binding so the design ends on the edge of the quilt crisply. Quilt backings rarely get much thought, and since this quilt is for display and not use, I decided to use the extra fabric as a pieced backing. I don't usually take pictures of the back of my quilts, but I thought this was interesting especially since you can see the quilting.
Have you ever done a quilt challenge? Maybe this challenge? Let me know!
Check out the Modern Quilt Guild at: www.themodernquiltguild.com
Check out Riley Blake fabric at: www.rileyblakedesigns.com
Go to Instragram to see more challenge quilts by searching for: #mqgfabricchallenge