Saturday, September 11, 2010

Orchid Show Quilt

Bouquet Extravaganza 
Recently I entered a quilt into the Orchid Show Challenge in Palmerston North. The local Orchid Society was having a large convention and they approached Rose City Quilters to organise a quilt challenge which would be open to anyone in NZ, you did not have to belong to a club to enter and there was no entry fee, the only stipulation was that the quilt was made especially for this competition and that it related to the theme of the show "Orchid Extravaganza". We got 23 entries from Paraparaumu up to Whangarei. These quilts were judged by a quilt judge and a director of a local gallery who is into textiles and prizes were awarded, then the quilts were judged by the Orchid Society judges who chose one quilt as their Best in Show and I am so happy to say that the orchid judges chose mine as the Best in Show.
I hand painted silk for the background as I wanted it to shade from dark outside to light behind the flowers. Then I appliqued cotton fabric for the flowers and leaves, adding paint for detail on the flowers and then using thread painting to emphasise the detail on the flowers and leaves. I machine quilt on a domestic machine and stitched a loopy pattern which creates a texture for the background. I did not use a standard binding but a faced binding so it is not seen and does not interrupt the flow of the design. I did have to study lots of photos of orchids and then it was hard choosing which ones to feature. I really like several species so I decided to include them in a floral arrangement to make the most of them. I was amazed how many different orchids there are and that many do not look like what I think of as orchids. I am pleased all my research and hard work was appreciated.

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