Kalona Quilt Show: A Visual Tour

April 28 was the opening of the annual quilt show in Kalona. It’s a mix of old and new quilts, and the old ones are definitely the thing that turns my head.

Though there seemed to be fewer this year, there were still a few knock-outs. Unlike years past (here and here), no purchases were made, but it was an enjoyable evening nonetheless. I went with my friend Kristin, who has a much better appreciation and eye for the quilting. I was grateful for her perspective because my attraction to color and pattern often overrides my notice of how much quilting adds (or detracts) from the overall piece.

So, for your viewing pleasure, here are some of the highlights…

Appliqué”Daisy,” year unknown
Pineapple. year unknown (this was my favorite of the show)
Churn Dash, 1900s
Pickle Dish, 1940s
A signature quilt—forgot to take a photo of the information card. Thought the colors were so unusual
Hole in the Barn Door, 1880 to 1900s (This was Kristin’s favorite)
Top left: Hearts and Gizzards, 1880s, and bottom right: Bow Tie—unusual to see blocks set this way

Art Quilts of the Midwest is Launched!

I really will post soon about something other than Art Quilts of the Midwest. But last night Codi held a book launch party at Home Ec Workshop and it was so much fun for me. There were lots of friends, old (as in 20+ years old) and new (people I’ve met while working at Home Ec) and in between. There were several folks that I was especially touched to see, including a group of my former colleagues from my days at the University of Iowa. Several of us had made quilts for one another for significant life events (here, and herehere).

Here Codi and I look oddly formal (considering that I must have hugged her 27 times over the evening). But she gave me this bouquet of daffodils tulips and I wanted to include it in the picture. She put so much effort into the evening, and I was so grateful.

This was the only shot I got of Erick, and we didn’t get one of Astrid (the book’s foreword author) at all. She and I each said a few words about our involvement in the book, and Erick showed a portion of the film he’s made about his work that included the pieces he has in the book.

The funny part was that the crowd was so much larger than anticipated and we realized we wouldn’t fit into the workroom. So Codi, Astrid, and I delivered our remarks from Home Ec’s kitchen, and Erick showed his film in shifts in the workshop. Our friends listened patiently and there were so many great comments about Erick’s film.

Emily, in the black and white jacket, was one of the book’s jurors

It was an evening that reminded me how much the Midwest has given me. Though I rant and rave every year about my dislike of the cold and the snow, the community that is Iowa City makes me so very happy. As Astrid said in her remarks, it’s a place filled with people who are hidden gems doing surprising things, and having this group of artists, professors, shop owners, scientists, realtors, poets, graphic designers, knitters extraordinaire, biologists, etc. come out to support the book meant so very much.