Happy New Year!  Hoping all your holiday celebrations and reunions were wonderful. 

At the start of a fresh, shiny new year, all slates seem wiped clean and the possibilities seem limitless.

Let's get to it!

                       Suzanne Zizzi Photography
My Christmas Card Quilt
Though the process was wrought with anxiety, I did complete the quilt I envisioned for this year’s holiday card [see left] in time to make and send cards.  I finished binding the quilt on Friday, December 18th and,  with no time to spare, pinned on a strip of muslin to the top of the quilt’s back side as a temporary hanging sleeve and started taking pictures.  It was a dark, overcast morning -- and one of the 
shortest days of the year to boot -- so my usually sunny dining room/photo studio was lacking sufficient natural light.  I supplemented the overhead lighting with five lamps from around my home [see right].  Once I got all the pix back, then could I start making, signing and addressing my cards.  All were post-marked before December 24th, so I’m counting this year’s effort in the win column.  If you’d like to see the individual blocks in detail -- and the previous quilts in my Christmas Card series -- click here for more photos.
What I'm Working On
The present blocks I showed in last month’s newsletter were exchanged at my quilt 
guild’s December meeting/holiday party. We had forty(!) members participate in the exchange and every- one ended up with a great assortment.  Though I still had my Christmas Card quilt to finish, I could not resist playing with the blocks I received to come up with the ultimate arrangement and I think I found it (see left).  Once sewn together, I’ll add a 4-inch border to bring the quilt up to the preferred size for donation to one of my guild’s charities as part of our Loving Hands program.
Best of 2015
As we face a new year of creativity, I thought it might be fun to look at some top prize winning quilts from major shows in 2015.  Back in February,        "i Quilt" (see right) won the Best of Show prize at QuiltCon in Austin, TX.  It was created by Kathy York, also of Austin.  To see more of the winners from QuiltCon 2015, click here and to see more of Kathy York's quilts, click here.
Then in April, "Majestic Mosaic" (see left) won the Best of Show prize at the American Quilter's Society show in Paducah, KY.  The quilt was machine appliquéd by Karen Kay Buckley and quilted by Renae Haddadin, both of Carlisle, PA.  To see more of the winning quilts from Paducah in 2015, click here and to see more of Karen Kay Buckley's quilts, click here.
In August, Janette Chilver's quilt "Kaleidoscope" (see right) won both Best Traditional Quilt and Best in Show at the Festival of Quilts in Birmingham, England.  To see more of the winning quilts from the Birmingham show, click here and to see more of Janette Chilver's work, click here.
Then in mid-October, "Fern Rising" by Claudia Pfeil of Krefeld, Germany won the Best of Show award at the Pacific International Quilt Festival in Santa Clara, CA. To see more quilts that won at the Pacific International, click here. More of Claudia Pfeil's quilts can be found on her website (which not surprisingly is in German) by clicking here and then clicking on the "Galerie" button.
And in late October, "Ewe Are My Sunshine" by Janet Stone of Overland Park, KS won the Best of Show prize -- and a $10,000 award -- at the International Festival of Quilts in Houston, TX.  To see more of the Houston winners, click here and to see more of Janet's quilts, including her series of alphabet quilts, click here.

Lastly, for a look at some of the entries and winners of one more 2015 quilt show, The Tokyo International Great Quilt Festival, check out this blog.
An Upcoming Quilt Show
The Road to California quilt show, the largest quilt show in southern California, is at the end of the month -- January 21 – 24.  I am looking forward to seeing all the quilts on display there and especially the exhibit by my guild, the Glendale (CA) Quilt Guild. This year, my guild has the honor of having quilts made by its members hang in the 45' tall atrium of the Ontario (CA) Convention Center during the show.
Since they are hung so high, the quilts need to be at least 72” in length and have to be bold enough so that they can be appreciated by those viewing them from the floor below.  The quilt on the left, "Woven Whimsy," will be my contribution to this exhibit.  I'll share photos of the high flying exhibit in next month's newsletter. For more info on the Road to California quilt show, click here
A Special Note
As my usual editor (my sister, Sheila Curran Lane) is on the ski slopes with her family this new year, I have a celebrity guest editor looking over my shoulder for this issue, Valerie O’Donovan Curran.  Thanks, Mom!  
FYI, I've added links to the previous editions of my newsletter on my website.  If you want to see a previous one, click here.
I'm wishing that everyone's new year gets off to a happy, healthy and creative start!  And may it be a sweet '16!  :)
Copyright © 2016 Art Quilts by Tina Curran, All rights reserved.

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