Home sweetest spot to create memories, quilts

Margarita Korioth of Longwood, Fla., won grand prize with her mixed media entry in the 2012 “Home Is Where the Quilt Is” contest sponsored by the Quilt Alliance. She titled hers “Quilting Makes My Heart Blossom” and received a Handi Quilter machine system.

Jamie Fingal of Orange, Calif., made “Home Is Where Your Story Begins” for the 2012 Quilt Alliance contest and auction. Her creation won first place.

“Home Is Always An Open Door” by Joyce Hughes of Warminster, Pa., received a second-place award. All 119 entries are being auctioned on eBay to benefit the Quilt Alliance and its many programs.

Nine members of the Broadway Gentlemen’s Quilting Auxiliary of New York won third-place honors for “Open House,” which unfolds to reveal a cozy room inside, below.

This is the time of year when the importance of home, and all of the comforts therein, are on the minds of all those who gather within. Holidays and homecomings go together like pumpkin pie and whipped cream.

Dec. 10, house-shaped quilts made in the theme “Home Is Where the Quilt Is” — a play on the saying “Home Is Where the Heart Is” — are being auctioned on eBay to benefit the Quilt Alliance of Asheville, N.C.

The nonprofit organization was founded in 1993 to document, preserve and share the history of quilts and quilt makers.

Of the 119 quilts submitted as fundraising donations, one was named grand prize winner, three finished in first, second or third place, and 10 more received honorable mention.

Quilt Alliance officials chose this broad theme to celebrate the form and meaning of home for their 2012 contest.

All techniques and materials were encouraged, with the requirement that each piece consist of three layers (a standard definition for a quilt). Each entry measures 15 inches wide by 19½ inches tall.

The top two winners hail from the West Coast and the East Coast. I wonder what are the chances that sewing machines were simultaneously whirring on these projects on both sides of our country?

In Longwood, Fla., Margarita Korioth pieced, appliqued and machine- and hand-embroidered her mixed media quilt titled “Quilting Makes My Heart Blossom.” She also used a silk screen process, paper lamination and metal leafing in the scene of a woman’s figure, a heart and a flower bed in full bloom. Her grand prize was a Handi Quilter machine system.

In her artist statement, Korioth says she wanted to demonstrate that cloth and recyclable materials can be used to create and interpret our thoughts.

“This is an enjoyable technique that I feel is just the beginning of a new and innovative way to do art,” she says.

“I feel happiest when I am at home quilting. Like the garden, my family blossoms when I nourish them with love.”

Meanwhile, in Orange, Calif., first-place winner Jamie Fingal combined commercial cotton, batiks, printed chiffon and wool blended felt to create “Home Is Where Your Story Begins.” It features a typewriter with hand-drawn keys and zipper trim.

Fingal recently lost both her parents in a four-month period, and sorting through their household possessions has been bittersweet.

“Throughout this time, I find solace in writing,” she says. “I honor the things I have chosen to keep, as they remind me who I am and where I came from. Through love and loss, we go on creating our own stories.”

Life and the passage of time also have brought many changes for Joyce Hughes of Warminster, Pa., who was awarded second place in the contest with “Home ... Is Always An Open Door.”

The focus of her quilt is just that — an open door — surrounded by a lush floral display and a stone garden path.

Her technique included raw edge applique, thread painting and embellishments.

Hughes says she always wants to go home to “celebrate my happiness and to have shelter and security during the difficult times.”

“For me and my family, the door to comfort will never be locked.”  

That same open-door policy is the philosophy of the Broadway Gentlemen’s Quilting Auxiliary of New York, N.Y., whose group project, “Open House,” was the third-place choice.

Together the nine of them stitched an entry with a traditional log cabin cover, but they cleverly built a scene behind it. When unfolded, the quilt reveals a room inside with furnishings and other decorations.

Because their passion for quilting and for Broadway brought them together, their artist statement reads, they extend their hospitality to all audiences.

“Pop up for a visit. Pull up a chair and a needle and thread, and make yourself at home,” their invitation says.

The auxiliary members include Michael Cole, Maggi Gordon, Shahnaz Khan, Frank Klemens, Michael Michalski, Jennifer Rice, Eric Sciotto, Steven Skybell and Melanie Vaughan.

You can view the entire “Home Is Where the Quilt Is” collection at http://www.quiltalliance.org.

If you’re inclined to check out the eBay auction, bidding starts at $50 and different quilts are offered on a weekly basis (these are posted on the Quilt Alliance Facebook page).

While you’re browsing among these cozy little vignettes, give some thought as to what makes your own house a home.

Email Sherida.Warner@


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