I started working on this post several days ago, the second of the photos I took at the Pennsylvania National Quilt Extravaganza. There are so many photos to go through, decide which fit the theme, upload them, then give them some description.

If you missed my previous post with photos from the quilt show, go back and read it. Those quilts made such strong statements, as only quilts can. 

But quilts can also be humorous. There was one quilt I didn’t photograph, that featured a fat-faced toddler with a sock coming out of her mouth (the sock was a real sock, within the appliqued mouth). The quilter described it as a portrait of her granddaughter who liked to carry her sock in her mouth. All I could think of when viewing this quilt was, “this is the ultimate blackmail piece when this girl is a teenager and brings a date to meet grandma. Grandma will pull out this quilt to show boyfriend, and teen will ‘die’ in agony and embarrassment.” I’m sure that wasn’t what the quilter intended, but that was my reaction. The quilt still made me laugh, though, because it was so well done.


“William”, by Sheila Kramer, Jackson, NJ, for the Hoffman Challenge. This is a beautiful quilt that just made me giggle, because hippos affect me that way. I primarily took the photo to share with a friend who loves hippos, but thought I’d share it here, too. As my mom said, a quilt can make “even the less-than-glamorous very beautiful.”


By Kathy James, Fort Washington, PA. The Philadelphia Modern Quilt Guild’s challenge was to create a quilt that fit a stool cushion; no embellishment, as that would hurt to sit on. Ms. James stated in her quilt’s description, “I thought it would be funny, no, hysterical, to sit on a blueberry pie.” I agree with her, and this is one reason why I love reading the descriptions that go with the quilts on display at shows. She did such a good job of weaving the crust strips over or around the blueberries!

Apparently, bikinis were a big deal this year. Especially yellow polka dot bikinis. This was the first one I saw there. “Bikini Body” by Lee Anna Paylor, of Severna Park, MD. But my camera can’t quite catch the really amazing thing about this quilt: parts of it are 3D. Like the bikini babe’s chest and belly, her tote bag, and her towel. Maybe this second photo will show it better:


But also notice, in the first photo, that all the other women are wearing one piece bathing suits. Anyway, this quilt gave me a good laugh. The quilter’s description read in part, “This feisty bikini wearer is a self-portrait of how I’d look back in Florida today.” I can only imagine the personality of this quilter, but she seems like a lot of fun!

Polka dot bikini number two was not worn by a feisty self-portrait, but by something else:

Yes, that’s a bear, wearing a yellow polka dot bikini. (Can there be any other kind?) “Dancing Bear” was made by Ginny Rippe, of Woodbridge, VA, for the 2013 Hampton Challenge issued by Cabin Branch Quilters. They all made quilts based on a song with a color in the title. (“Purple Rain” was a popular choice, plus at least one Elvis song and several Christmas songs.) You already know the song, right? The combination of bikini-wearing and surfing bear is just too funny, don’t you think?


Owls were apparently a thing this year: they were everywhere, on quilts, on fabric, as felting projects, etc. These owls were just so cute I had to take a photo.  “Friends in High Places”, by Jean Roesler, Grand Junction, Colorado, for the Art Quilt Association. Again, these little critters were kind of 3D: 


Their ‘ear’ tufts are just the cutest things, and their expressions are priceless. I did note that at the bottom of the description it said this quilt was available for sale. Hmmm…

Staying with the animal theme…



“Wave Goodbye”, by Ruth Wilcox. Her description said that there were joints and seagrass weights, so if I wanted to I could have asked one of the white gloved assistants to pull the seagrass to see the claws move. I didn’t. But, I think it’s a funny idea. I remember one year, a quilt said “TOUCH ME” and had specific instructions to let anyone feel it. I loved that quilt, as it is so much about what quilts are to me: textures to be felt and experienced and loved. Still, these fiddler crabs were so colorful I had to share them.


“Eloise Joins The Circus”, by Janet Fogg, Milwaukie, OR. Um, why is there an eiffel tower on that elephant’s head? Anyway, this is still a beautiful quilt, and it did make me laugh in surprise when I realized it wasn’t a typical party hat. 


“Gossip Girls” by Sandy Curran, Newport News, VA. I love these birds, I love how Ms. Curran pieced the top and bottom sections. And I love the description: “Can’t you just hear them chatting together. I hear them saying, ‘She didn’t!'” Just brings a smile to my face reading that and looking at the busy bodies.


“Making Her Exit” by Pamela Allen, Kingston, Ontario, Canada. Ms. Allen stated this is kind of her life, going from a “sameness of my former career” to a “life of infinite choices” as an artist. I just love the exuberance of the artist side, all the color, and check out the roller skates on her feet.  


This is someone who seems to be living a second life, and I can only wish her well on her travels, with a smile.


Somehow, I failed to make a note of who made this quilt. Someone obviously had fun fussy-cutting women for this one! Check out the close-up of a few of them:


The little head in the jar (“Getting a head”) and on the platter (“Head waitress”) caught me totally off guard! And, taking this quilter’s advice, I’m going to “quilt while I’m ahead.”  🙂

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