Monday, October 14, 2013

Design Challenge

I recently participated in a design challenge through my local guild - The Heber Valley Quilters.
As I was working on this years challenged, I reflected on years past when I have participated in this fun yearly event. 
I have been a member of my local guild since 2003.  Since that time I have participated in the design challenge 5 times.  It has been fun to look back and also remember the quilts that I designed for this event
as well as all of the wonderful quilts designed and made by the talented ladies in my guild.

This year the challenge was to design a quilt using half square triangles that we traded with other members of the guild.  So I ended up with 18 pairs of half square triangles that were all different.  The rules were that we had to use all of those mismatched triangle pieces and then add at least one other size of half square triangles to the design.  The finished size was to be at least 20" x 20".

So... this is what I designed.  I like how it turned out!

I am trying hard to remember what years that I did the rest of the quilts.  I really can't.  I guess that is why quilt labels are so important.

The first challenge that I participated in must have been in 2004.  Because it was before my 5th child was born and he was born in 2005.  The challenge of this quilt was very simple.  They passed around a bag of all different candy bars and we were to grab one out without looking.  We were to then design a quilt using some aspect of that candy bar. (This really pushed our creative limits.)
Here is the quilt that I designed.
Can you guess what candy bar I picked out?


My idea for this quilt came from my children and their little fingerprints that they leave everywhere.  Each one of their hands are represented on a block that I traced each one of their hands and then appliqued the shape onto the block.  I had each of them write their name and then embroidered that image.  Instead of binding it like a normal quilt, I thought it would be fun to frame it.  It is a fun keepsake.

I am trying so hard to remember what year this challenge quilt was made.  I really don't remember, but I think it was the second that I did for the design challenge.  Everyone who wanted to participate in the challenge swapped charm squares.   This was before you could buy the commercial charm packs.  So for a few months our assignment was to bring precut squares to trade.  The challenge was to design a quilt that was a "charm quilt", meaning that each piece of fabric in the quilt was different.  A true charm quilt.  
Mine was very basic.  As I remember I needed to make something that was quick so I made a small quilt that had 144 different fabrics, each one a 1 1/2" square.
This took a lot longer than I thought it would.  Cutting out all of those small squares out of different fabrics and then piecing them together one by one.

The next quilt is one of my favorites.  The theme for this challenge was "Everything I need to learn I learned in Quilt Guild."  The rules were simple.  We could use anything that we had learned in quilt guild to make this quilt.  We also had a group that did Round Robins every year.  I had not yet jumped onto that bandwagon, but I liked the idea, so that was the premise for my design.  I wanted the Round Robin look.  The center of the quilt was a crooked pieced Buggy Barn style heart.  (Both methods that I learned at quilt guild.)  A checkerboard border, which was one of my favorite designs at the time.  Then, the final border I did hand applique, which I also learned how to do at quilt guild.

Another quilt that I designed for the design challenge was a brown monotone log cabin quilt.  I don't remember the exact details of this challenge.  Each person participating got assigned an earth, wind, water or fire theme for the quilt.  Our quilts would reflect each of these themes.  Each month for several months we would get the next assignment for designing the quilt.  The only one that I remember is that one of the months we had to add beads to the design.  I didn't get this one totally finished.  I don't remember why. It is still sitting in a stack of quilts that need to be quilted.  One of these days....

Do you belong to a guild that hosts a design challenge?  If not, suggest it.  It is a lot of fun!

Happy Quilting!!!!!