Touring Quilter – National Quilt Championships, Sandown UK

I had a lovely day out on Saturday, visiting the annual National Quilt Championships at Sandown Racecourse. The sun shone but it was not too hot and although the traffic on the M25 motorway/carpark was heavy our journeys too and from the venue did not spoil the day.

Starting with lunch… We sat outside on the main stand of Sandown Racecourse and enjoyed the panoramic view of London.

Sandown 2019 View (1) by Allison Reid
If you look very closely you will see the triangular shape of The Shard between two tree tops to the right of the photo. The Shard is the tallest building in the UK.
Sandown 2019 View (3) by Allison Reid
Look closely at the horizon and you’ll spot the arch of Wembley Stadium gleaming in the sunshine.

As members of Roundabout Quilters we were keen to go see our Group Quilt hanging in the exhibition. Our quilt, along with all the others was displayed well and it was especially pleasing to see other visitors stopping to look and making positive comments.

Sandown 2019 Group Quilt (2) by Allison Reid
Roundabout Quilters entry with the winner of the Group Quilt category in the foreground.

Sandown 2019 Group Quilt (1) by Allison Reid

And look the quilt gained a Judges Merit! The first time Roundabout Quilters has entered a quilt in a show too! The Quilt will be first prize in the Charity Raffle we are holding as part of our bienneial exhibition in September (more details here).

Now for your delight and inspiration here are just a very few of the quilts on display at Sandown.

Sandown 2019 Quilt (1) by Allison Reid
‘Modern Quilt’ by Maureen Crawford.
Sandown 2019 Quilt (2) by Allison Reid
‘Tutti-Frutti’ by Pam & Nicky Lintott.
Sandown 2019 Quilt (2.1) by Allison Reid
‘Tutti-Frutti’ quilting detail

Part of the exhibition space was given over to Sandy Chandler’s huge wholecloth quilts. Here are close ups from two of her quilts:

Sandown 2019 Quilt (3) by Allison Reid
Detail of wholecloth quilt by Sandy Chandler

Sandown 2019 Quilt close up by Allison Reid

Sandown 2019 Quilt (4) by Allison Reid
‘Storm at Sea’ by Pat Coverdale
Sandown 2019 Quilt (5) by Allison Reid
‘Seaside Sewing’ by Gill Tilburn was hand pieced on holiday!

Of course, there was opportunity for retail therapy too. I had a good therapy session… picking up fabrics for Myra’s Jelly Roll Waves QAL starting in a week’s time; backing fabric for the Square in a Square quilt tops I made earlier in the month; a book about Bargello quilts (this is a patchwork pattern on my bucket list!); a couple of fabric pieces for my stash and a little collection of notions (I know, ANOTHER ruler! 😀 ).

Sandown 2019 Jelly Roll Wave fabrics by Allison Reid Sandown 2019 Notions by Allison ReidSandown 2019 Backing and Stash fabrics by Allison Reid

Roundabout Quilters met a few days after Sandown for a sewing evening. As well as being very happy with our first experience of having a Group Quilt hung in a national show we were in general agreement that attendance at quilt shows is declining year by year. I wonder if you have experienced the same? The biggest and most popular UK show is the annual Festival of Quilts held over a long weekend in August at the NEC, Birmingham. Perhaps there will have to be a reduction in the number of national shows held throughout the UK with the key event being the Festival of Quilts? As footfall declines and exhibition entries fall, vendors and exhibition goers alike may have to acknowledge that the number of shows on the calendar will need to be reduced.

On a positive note I wonder if a reduction in the number of national quilt shows will lead to a rise in the popularity of the exhibitions held by local quilt groups? Less travel and reduced costs for vendors and visitors alike, along with the pleasure of seeing quilts hung in a variety of spaces could be the way forwards. I’d be interested to know your thoughts on the present state and future options for quilt exhibitions.

Joining Lorna for the Let’s Bee Social link up at Sew Fresh Quilts. Lorna is sharing her latest animal pattern called ‘Lamb Chops’!

Allison

Quilting Feathers & Being Ambitious!

Ooo! I did so enjoy meeting Trudi Wood and taking part in her workshop last Sunday. Trudi quilts the most beautiful feather designs using a domestic machine as well as her long-arm. The workshop was very relaxed, Trudi gave us all confidence as she explained how to free-motion-quilt feather designs. We had plenty of time to practice – a bit of pencil to paper muscle memory work to begin with then our sewing machines began to whir!

First feathers by New Every Morning Patchwork & Quilting
First feathers

Feather meander by New Every Morning Patchwork & Quilting
All-over feather design

Feather wreath by New Every Morning Patchwork & Quilting
Feather wreath – second attempt

It was amazing to come away with a credible free motion feather wreath – I had no thought of creating anything so ambitious by the end of the day.
Pieced backing by New Every Morning Patchwork & QuiltingAs usual, I have more than one project on the go! Three have all reached the same stage at the same time: as a result I’ve spent quite a lot of time spreading out fabric and wadding on the sitting room floor trying to figure out how to piece backings and working out if my wadding pieces will be big enough. Here is the backing (including label!) for the ‘Chocolatier Variation‘ quilt.
Then, of course, comes the dreaded basting.
I finished basting the Beginners Course quilt (and attached a label!) – it’s up on my design wall to brighten the place up while there’s no piecing going on.
Beginners Quilt No5 by New Every Morning Patchwork & Quilting
I also basted ‘Carrie Nation Variation’ – it is pretty large at 76″ square and weighs a tonne!

My ambition with this quilt is to enter it in The Festival of Quilts (an annual event held at the NEC, Birmingham). I’m hoping I’ll be able to stitch some half decent feather patterns across the quilt. This morning I’ve been stitching in the ditch around some of the patchwork, mainly to stabilise the layers but also, I have to admit, to put off switching to free motion mode!
It’s time to do a bit of housework but those feathers are calling 🙂
Linking with Kelly at My Quilt Infatuation for Needle and Thread Thursday. Kelly is sharing memories and photos of her time at the recent Quilt Market.
Allison