QuiltCon 2015 Quilt Show!

Did you know that QuiltCon quilt show entries are now open?!? Think you want to enter the show? Wondering what you need to know before you do? This series of posts will provide information that will help you understand what will happen before, during and after the show. Jacquie Gering has been leading the Education Committee, made up of 17 members, on revamping judging for QuiltCon 2015. The MQG Education Committee has been hard at work at these posts so they will be jam packed with loads of information for you!


TODAY!: Show Overview and Choosing Your Quilt

Post 2: Challenge Details + The Submission Process

Post 3: Judging

Post 4: Post Show

Ok – so let’s get to it and dive into the first post of the series!

Quilt Show Overview & Choosing Your Quilt

QuiltCon is the convention of the Modern Quilt Guild and the quilt show, as the main event, is our opportunity to showcase the spectacular work of our members from around the world. In order to enter a quilt you need to be a member of the MQG. Not a member yet? Join here.

The first step is to submit a quilt for consideration. Quilt submissions opened July 1, 2014 and close November 30, 2014 so you have lots of time to get a fantastic modern quilt made to submit!

Submitted quilts will not automatically be part of the quilt show. There is limited hanging space at the venue, all submitted quilts will undergo a jurying process to choose the quilts that will ultimately hang in the show. Think carefully about the quilt(s) you’d like to enter. The jurors will look for quilts that fit the modern aesthetic as defined for our guild:

Modern quilts are primarily functional and inspired by modern design. Modern quilters work in different styles and define modern quilting in different ways, but several characteristics often appear which may help identify a modern quilt. These include, but are not limited to: the use of bold colors and prints, high contrast and graphic areas of solid color, improvisational piecing, minimalism, expansive negative space, and alternate grid work. “Modern traditionalism” or the updating of classic quilt designs is also often seen in modern quilting.

Quilts do not have to have all of the characteristics of the aesthetic, but since this is a modern quilt show we are looking for modern quilts. The jury will also be looking for quilts with visual impact and quilts that are well made. Quilts will be chosen so that the show is balanced in each of the categories. We want to showcase the best work of our members. If you’re unsure about what is a modern quilt, we recommend you take the time to watch Heather Grant’s webinar that is available free to members on the MQG Community website.

How do you choose which quilt(s) should be entered into a show?

  • The quilt doesn’t have to be brand new, but it does have to be in great shape and made in the past four years.
  • The quilt should be clean and shouldn’t have stains, pet hair, tears, or worn areas. You can of course also make a quilt especially for entry into the show.
  • Pick your best work. Choose a quilt that has maximum visual impact, a quilt viewers at the show will walk up to, or move over to from across the room, and say, “Wow!” about.
  • Submitted quilts will need to fit into one of the categories listed below. Read the category definitions carefully to determine where your quilt fits. The jury and judges will make the final category determinations for quilts that hang in the show. Your quilt may fit into multiple categories, that is ok!

Quilts will be placed in the following categories based on entry:

Group or Bee Quilts – Modern quilts made by 3 or more people

Small quilts –  A quilt that fits into the categories listed below that measures 36″ or less per side. The quilt can be any shape as long as it does not exceed the size limit. The challenge is open to individuals or groups. Individuals may only be involved in one quilt or group.

Quilting Challenge – Bias Tape Applique, sponsored by Panasonic – Quilts that include either machine or hand sewn bias tape as part of the main design element.

Fabric Challenge – Cotton Couture Pastels, sponsored by Michael Miller – Quilts must primarily use Michael Miller’s Cotton Couture Pastels. Coordinating Michael Miller prints and cotton couture fabrics are permitted.

Youth – Entrants 18 years and younger


Quilts will be placed in the following categories during the judging process:

Applique – Quilt includes either machine or hand layering of fabric where the quilt’s primary focus is applique.

Handwork – Quilt includes at least one element of handwork including, but not limited to: hand piecing, hand quilting, embroidery, redwork, cross stitch, crewel, etc. Hand stitched binding does not qualify as handwork.

Improvisation – Quilt is pieced improvisationally (without the use of a defined pattern or templates).

Minimalist Design –The design of the quilt emphasizes extreme simplification of content and form to achieve maximum visual impact.

Use of Negative Space – Quilt design incorporates a creative or significant use of negative space which is integrated into and/or organizes the composition of the quilt.

Piecing – Quilts that are machine pieced and reflect a particularly strong or innovative use of piecing.

Modern Traditionalism – Quilt design incorporates the use of an identifiable traditional block pattern and modernizes it by applying design elements such as alternate grid work, asymmetry, color, scale, etc.

The Details:

  • The maximum perimeter of a quilt in the show is 480″. If a quilt is accepted and larger then 480” it will not be able to hang.
  • Quilts entered in the show must have been made in the four years before QuiltCon 2015 happens, so no quilt that was made before February 2011 may be entered in the show.
  • All entered quilts will not make it into the show. Does that mean it’s not a beautiful quilt or that it’s not a quality quilt? No, it doesn’t. It simply means that it didn’t get into the show. Sure, you might be disappointed, but no risk, no reward.

In the next post we’ll review all the information you’ll need for the submission process.

-See you then!

The MQG Education Committee

9 thoughts on “QuiltCon 2015 Quilt Show!

  1. I’m new to this and a little confused about being placed in the categories on entry vs. during judging. If I just make a modern quilt by myself, that doesn’t seem to fit into any of the “on entry” categories. Does that mean it would be categorized during judging instead? Can you clarify?

  2. Pingback: QuiltCon Quilt Show: The Judging Process | The Modern Quilt Guild

  3. Pingback: QuiltCon Quilt Show Submissions | Quilting Jetgirl

  4. Is the group that juries the quilts into the show different from the group that does the judging? If so, will you be announcing the jury as well as the judges? Thanks.

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