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Power Ties In Bloom: The Unveiling of My ArtPrize Quilts

Ok, folks. Here they are, the much hyped (by me) quilts that I have been obsessively laboring over for weeks and months in order to get them done the international ArtPrize competition that kicks off tomorrow here in Grand Rapids. I have no plans to win this competition, so the pressure is off now that the quilts are done. (Scroll down for more quilt photos.)

I finished the quilts Saturday and then immediately loaded them into my car to deliver them to the venue, so seeing them up on the wall at the David D. Hunting YMCA was a kind of like viewing them for the first time. And I’m pleasantly surprised that I actually like them. I was worried because several of them gave me fits.

As many of you know, the quilts are made of neckties donated by West Michigan community leaders using an English paper piecing technique. The goal is to sell them off during the show. The proceeds of the sale will go to Safe Haven Ministries, a local agency that assists survivors of domestic violence. It’s important work that they do and they need funding to keep it all going.

Here’s a quick look at “Power Ties In Bloom,” quilts 1-5.

I’ll be at the opening reception at the David D. Hunting YMCA, 475 Lake Michigan Drive NW Grand Rapids, Mich., from 6-8 pm. tomorrow and will be passing out free English paper piecing sample packs supplied by, (THANK YOU!) the company that I purchase all my hexagon templates from. So stop on by if you want to know how to paper piece. I LOVE to encourage hand-piecing addictions.

If you still want to know more, you can read the column I wrote about this experience that was published in today’s edition of The Grand Rapids Press. (My apologies to those of you who looked for this article yesterday. I looked for it, too.)

Thanks for all your support, dear readers. Your e-mail messages and and comments helped me complete this artistic mission. Thank you so much!!!


Comment from Beth
Time: September 21, 2010, 5:14 pm

Wow! They are so beautiful! I bet you stood beaming at your quilts once you had time to rest and could stand back and look at them. :)

Comment from Martha Barrett
Time: September 21, 2010, 5:54 pm

Congratulations! They’re beautiful. Wish I could be there in person, but truth be told I should be in Sequim, WA tomorrow for my father’s 92nd birthday (coincidentally) and I’m not doing that either. My looms came and they are also beautiful. Already successfully wove something on the small one. Will email you later about that. Anyway, good luck with the voting— I’ll be thinking good thoughts for you.

Comment from Bonney
Time: September 21, 2010, 6:03 pm


Comment from Kelgurl
Time: September 21, 2010, 6:14 pm

they look wonderful. can’t wait to see them in person! I enjoyed your article in the paper too.
get some sleep tonight ;)

Comment from jo 戎嶋
Time: September 21, 2010, 6:15 pm

wow, they look great! well worth the hard work, sadly Japan is too far to pop in and look at the in real life, I hope they sell well.

Comment from Kim T
Time: September 21, 2010, 6:47 pm

Wonderful work Jennifer!

Comment from Ellyn
Time: September 21, 2010, 7:42 pm

fabulous! I wish I was close enough to come. You did a great job

Comment from Sandy
Time: September 21, 2010, 8:16 pm

Jennifer …. I have been following your blogging on these quilts and was so interested to see what you would do with them. I was expecting a traditional flower-garden quilt … and it was delightful to see what you did with the motifs. I hope whoever gets these fully appreciates the tradition, the innovation, and the deeper meaning of the entire enterprise.

Comment from Emma Treadgold
Time: September 21, 2010, 8:24 pm

I have loved watching you put these together, a real labour of love. Now you can sit back and enjoy the satisfaction that completing an epic artwork brings!

Comment from Kristyn
Time: September 21, 2010, 8:46 pm

Congratulations. The quilts are beautiful.

Comment from vicki
Time: September 21, 2010, 10:13 pm

They are gorgeous! This isn’t what I expected, either, but I love what you did with all the blooms. The turquoise and light blues in the centers of some of the flowers are so pretty. Congratulations!

Comment from Diane
Time: September 21, 2010, 10:46 pm

Congratulations Jennifer! The quilts are beautiful and a real joy to see! A job very well done, indeed!

Comment from Debbie-Esch House Quilts
Time: September 22, 2010, 7:16 am

Congratulations Jennifer! What an accomplishment – the installation looks amazing! I hope someone really understands what these are worth and they raise lots of money for your charity.

Comment from Lori Lynn
Time: September 22, 2010, 8:29 am

Your quilts are so lovely! Great job!

Comment from Traci
Time: September 22, 2010, 1:56 pm

I agree with the others. I was expecting a traditional grandmother’s flower garden. This is so different and refreshing. Kudos to you. Hope you raise a lot of money for this great cause.

Comment from deborah
Time: September 22, 2010, 2:14 pm

It’s an awesome final result – great job. Thanks for an inspiring podcast, it helps to keep me going when the making world gets tough.

Comment from Becky
Time: September 22, 2010, 2:23 pm

I think your quilts are stunning and articulate. I loved reading about your determination and how hard you pushed to complete these. Congratulations! Your hard work inspired me, but even more importantly, your support of this cause has made me stop and figure out where I can help as well. You have set an outstanding example for your two girls (and your readers too)!

Comment from melissa
Time: September 22, 2010, 2:27 pm

go, jennifer!!!

Comment from Felicia
Time: September 22, 2010, 2:43 pm

Wow Jennifer, they look great! I love nothing more than seeing fluffy flowers quilts :) Good for your for finishing them and enjoy the reception.

Comment from Sarah
Time: September 22, 2010, 4:06 pm

Well done lovely girl! Great work. x

Comment from dana
Time: September 22, 2010, 7:33 pm

hi there. congrats on finishing. they look great. i am continually inspired by your no-holds-barred approach to crafting.

i wondered if there’s a list anywhere of the tie donors?

thanks, dana

Comment from Kim – B.B. Bellezza
Time: September 22, 2010, 8:36 pm

Congrats!!! I feel so relieved for you as I’ve been in project-crunch-why-did-I-start-this-will-I-ever-get-it-done mode before myself!

They are amazing and gorgeous!

Comment from Gayle Grier
Time: September 22, 2010, 10:14 pm

These quilts are wonderful, Jennifer. You did a fantastic job on them. Congratulations on your accomplishment! I love listening to your podcasts and hearing about your crafty life.

Comment from linda
Time: September 23, 2010, 3:12 am

Wow, beautiful! All that hard work paid off…great job!

Comment from Ann Martin
Time: September 23, 2010, 10:33 am

Wonderfully abstract! Congratulations on all your hard work – it has paid off royally.

Comment from AllyB
Time: September 24, 2010, 8:45 am

Jennifer, they are great! Can’t wait to get over there to see them. What a great thing you’re doing for Safe Haven.

Comment from LeeAnn Creager
Time: September 27, 2010, 12:56 am

Paper Pieces gave us samples to give out to visitors during our quilt show too! What a great company! Your friends/fans can stop out to the Coopersville Farm Museum to see the 162 quilts until 9/30/10 and pick up a sample kit!

Comment from JayeL
Time: October 2, 2010, 1:58 pm

Like Sandy, I was expecting a traditional grandmother’s flower garden quilt. They are so exceptional! They really weave in the women and men that make up Safe Haven, I think (ties/fabric=men; flower motifs=women). You have done a wonderful job and should be very proud.

Comment from stacey
Time: October 7, 2010, 12:58 pm

those are awesome art quilts. i love that the ties are upcycled & that the proceeds of the sales will go to such a worthy cause.

Comment from Ewian
Time: October 27, 2010, 2:05 pm

Well done, the quilts looks good. The colour combo of blue and beige was grate.


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