Houston - Special Exhibits


The 1876 Centennial Quilt Project

Organized by Anne Dawson and Karen B. Alexander

After discovering an extraordinary quilt from Connecticut in an online quilt history group and securing permission from its owner, a quilt group from Northwestern Washington began the journey of patterning The 1876 Centennial Quilt. Set in a unique Medallion-style arrangement, this quilt contains over 70 different patterns.

25 years of American Patchwork & Quilting Cover Quilts

Sponsored by American Patchwork & Quilting Magazine

An eclectic collection of quilts that have appeared on the cover of the iconic American Patchwork & Quilting magazine. From the first issue in April 1993 to present, traditional to modern, get an up-close view of the quilts and cover photography as it has evolved over the past quarter century.

Adventures in Comics and Cosplay

Sponsored by Sew Much Cosplay

Adventure is all around us. So are heroes and villains. Quilter and Costumer Cheryl Sleboda spent 20 years in the comic book industry and attending comic cons. She saw a new market in sewing in “costume play” for those who dress up as their favorite characters. This exhibit features Cheryl’s new cosplay-centric product line and her series of quilts based on the techniques of legendary comic book artist Jack Kirby, but reinterpreted by her.

Along the Road

Through the art quilt, artist Maya Chaimovich found a medium for expressing her feelings and communicating her experiences. She uses as many different types of materials as possible, most of which are from recycled clothing. An important part of her design process is using clothing materials worn by people she doesn’t know and giving them a life of their own.

Antique Quilts of the British Isles

Sponsored by Moda and Antique Textiles Company, London, England

This exhibit features antique quilts from the British Isles from the collection of Christopher Wilson-Tate showcasing fine examples of North Country English and Welsh Quilting.

The Best of Dinner at Eight Artists: Celebrating Ten Years of Exhibits

Sponsored by Havel’s and Mistyfuse

The quilts in this exhibit represent the culmination of 10 years of work from the Dinner at Eight Artists. Each of the group’s exhibits over the last 10 years have challenged its quilt artists to create dynamic works based on a variety of ideas and themes. See the best of those works here!

Beyond the Valley: A TRIBUTE TO ESTHER BLAIR MATTHEWS 1776-1866

Organized by Doreen Johnson and Neva Hart

In 1858 Esther Blair Matthews created a Botanical Album quilt that depicted flowers growing in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. It also voiced her devotion to her family and country, and eventually the work found a home in the Virginia Quilt Museum. Quilts submitted for this current exhibit came from the Museum’s online SVBAQ Sew Along followers, and carry on the themes of Matthews’ famous quilt.

A Celebration of Color

Whatever your style…quilt colorfully! This annual judged competition and exhibit features works—created in a variety of styles and techniques—with vibrant and colorful designs. Awards include a $5,000 Best of Show, and three $1,000 prizes each in Traditional, Modern, and Art categories.


Classic Quilts in Modern Style from Brigitte Morgenroth—Retrospective

Artist Brigitte Morgenroth transforms traditional quilt patterns into modern designs by using different materials, arrangements, and color combinations. All of the quilts she has created are hand-quilted, and many are also hand-sewn.

A Collection of Color Stories

Sponsored by Windham and Anthology Fabrics

This exhibit introduces viewers to artist and designer Jacqueline de Jonge’s Color Stories. Her unique style includes traditional quilt designs combined with a contemporary twist and created with a fabulous palette of colors. De Jonge is best known for her BeColourful pattern collection, which combines rainbow colors and intricate designs with black and white fabric.

Easy Stack Quilts

This exhibit features quilts made using the Easy Stack technique, which celebrates Paula Doyle’s love of large-scale printed fabrics. Each of the fabrics is used to create blocks that appear complex, but are actually easy. Most of the quilts in this exhibit are also featured in the upcoming book, "Easy Stack Quilts."

eQuilter’s Love YouR Mother Quilt Challenge

Sponsored by eQuilter.com and Bernina

Mother Earth…she provides our home, our sustenance, our every need…but we are taking her for granted. This quilt challenge and exhibit are a collective effort to raise awareness and inspire others to “love Mother Earth.” It started with a digital-printed fabric panel with the Earth (Americas, Australia, or Africa) and a rainbow Mandala.


The story of the world's creation has been a source of influence and inspiration in many ancient cultures. The Jewish traditional text, the Old Testament, describes God's work of creating the universe and the humanity, with its first word – GENESIS. For this exhibit, the Israeli quilt group Encounters have represented the idea of creation, each from her own point of view.

Glow in the DARK 
  Sponsored by

 This highly original and unique exhibit features the illuminating work of Brazilian artist Ana Paula Brasil. A specially-built “box” will allow viewers to experience her art quilts stitched with glow in the dark thread. Visitors will see some aspects of the quilt visible only on the outside of the "box," with others revealed only once within the darkened structure.

Hands All Around

Artists from all around the world incorporate influences from their own cultures into the design and technique of their quilts. This prestigious, long-running international showcase will include recent quilts by international artists who create works inspired by such.

In Celebration of the Doll

Sponsored by Treasures of the Gypsy, Materials Girls Cloth Doll Club, TAODA, Treenway Silks, Clover Needlecraft, Alexander Henry Fabrics, Beckhanings, Fairfield Processing, Hanah Silks, and Cyndy's Dolls

An exuberant exhibit of dolls highlighting the amazing artistry of cloth dollmakers from around the world. You'll see a wonderful variety of over 120 creations that are realistic, humorous, and fanciful.

In the American Tradition—appliquÉd

in the american traditon—Pieced

in the american tradition—classic

This exhibit features recently-made quilts of traditional blocks, styles, and techniques as their design source. Contemporary quiltmakers often look to the art form’s rich tradition for inspiration in their own works. We have Pieced, Appliquéd, and Classic exhibits.

In Full Bloom

Just as quilters create beautiful pieces of art with fabric, florists and gardeners cultivate works of beauty from the soil. The International Quilt Festival will showcase floral quilts from across the spectrum in color and splendor in this special exhibit.

Inspired by Elvis
 Curated by Donna DeSoto

Included in this exhibit are 40 of the 96  36” x 36” quilts created by fiber artists from around the world to celebrate Elvis Presley. His legacy, fame, life, and music are depicted in a broad range of interpretations, from realistic to humorous to abstract, and through a myriad of techniques and style.

The international Miniature
Quilt Exchange

Sponsored by TheQuiltShow.com

Curated by hosts Ricky Tims and Alex Anderson, this exchange paired quilters from the U.S. with international quilters for the purpose of showing that quilters the world over have common goals, interests, joys, and trials, and that quilting brings people together. Each pair could create a theme for their exchange or simply make miniature quilts without any specific parameters. Pairs were also given the opportunity to submit their quilts for consideration for this exhibit.


Janet Clare—My Story So Far

Sponsored by Moda

Visit quilt artist and Moda designer Clare in her makeshift “studio” to learn what sparks her creativity while learning all about her design process. Discover how she seeks inspiration and then immediately puts it down in her sketchbooks. Plus, you’ll marvel at her artisan apron!

Judy Murrah: From the Heart

A lover of quilts and quiltmakers who built Festival’s education division into the equivalent of a collegiate curriculum…a talented designer of remarkable clothing and author of the books that told how to make them…a beloved quilting teacher…a collector of antique fabrics, trims, ribbons, and quilts…a pattern and fabric designer whose specialty was a soft, romantic palette…those talents came packaged into the beautiful woman who was Judy Olafson Murrah, our long-time Vice President of Education and Administration.

This exhibit is a memorial tribute to Judy and features a special selection of her quilts and garments. She will be greatly missed by many people all over the world who have enjoyed the classes she organized with our teachers, but for us, her family of friends and colleagues at Quilts, Inc., Judy will always be in our hearts.


Her door was always open for us, her smile was warm and loving, and her advice was welcome. She was a treasured, talented friend who loved us dearly, but who loved her family and her role as mother and Grammy even more. How we will all miss her!


Kaffe Fassett: Heritage Quilts in America

Sponsored by FreeSpirit and Taunton Press

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of his books, Kaffe has gone back to his American roots. He has used the of American vintage quilts in Britain’s American Museum in Bath as his inspiration for new designs in this book. The exhibit will feature Kaffe and his team of designers’ original quilts, as well as the antiques that inspired them. The designs demonstrate his vivid and unique color combinations to perfection.

Landscape Quilts

From valleys to volcanoes and mountains to monuments, landscapes often inspire artists, including many in the quilt world. The quilts in this exhibit were created using a variety of styles and techniques, all inspired by memorable landscapes.

Life Stories Told Through My Quilts

In recent years, traditional quiltmaker Barbara McCraw began to look inward at the places and times in her life. There were memories, experiences, and images that she wanted to depict, utilizing the African colors and patterns of her heritage. This exhibit features works – many in the Baltimore Album style – that each have their own story and are related to McCraw’s own life.

Made in Texas

The 25 quilts included in this exhibit celebrate the pioneering spirit, natural beauty, and artists' talents
 of the Lone Star State. From a first-time quilter to prizewinning artists, the makers reside in all regions
 of Texas.

Making THE Modern Traditional and          THE Traditional Modern

For the quilts in this exhibit, artist Carl Hentsch used the traditional New York Beauty block, substituting the spires with Flying Geese to add movement, and combining other elements of fans and arcs to give the blocks a resting place. When displayed in order, the colors of the quilts also move from saturated dark tones to light and eventually pure white.

Many Voices from One: Graduates of the Art Cloth Mastery Program

Curated by Jane Dunnewold

This exhibit represents three years of intense and dedicated study from 2019 participants in the Art Cloth Mastery Program. The pieces included illustrate some of the finest work being created by surface design artists today.

Modern Quilt Guild Showcase

Sponsored by the Modern Quilt Guild

Members of Modern Quilt Guild chapters from around the world submitted their creations for this exhibit which showcase traditional quilting techniques that also incorporate a modern design aesthetic.

My Heart’s Common Thread

Sponsored by SewBatik

Lorraine Turner lends her support to endangered animals by giving them a voice through her textile art. Each piece—stitched with purpose and love—tells their stories and begins with meditative messages brought forward through her work as an animal communicator. Lorraine uses a variety of methods and materials in her works and incorporates hidden elements of nature within the animals. All of her art supports non-profit animal sanctuaries worldwide.

Our Younger Brothers

Artist Milla Malchow’s quilts are inspired by photographs, but created with her own vision, style, and technique. She especially enjoys creating works based on photos of animals. And though the quilts in this exhibit look painted, all of them were made with just fabric and thread.

OURstory: Human Rights Stories in Fabric

Curated by Susanne Miller Jones

In 1948, the United Nations adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which delineated the rights to which all humans in all countries should be entitled. This collection of 42 art quilts was created by artists from six different countries and celebrates the heroes who fought for rights long denied to various groups of people and the events that drew the attention of news media and the public.

Power of Women

Join us as we celebrate the power of women. Entrants were invited to create a quilt or sheer art cloth
 that expresses their love and appreciation of an influential mother, sister, aunt, friend, or any greatly admired woman.

Primitive Quilts

From hand-pieced to machine made, the simple and unassuming designs of primitive quilts lend themselves to all techniques of quiltmaking. This exhibit includes recently-made quilts created in the primitive style.

Quilted Leather Art Saddles

This exhibit features artist Cathy Wiggins’ unique, one-of-a-kind art saddles. Each saddle is constructed from quilted leather panels that are shaded for added dimension. The saddles are embellished with traditional western-styled hardware, unusual charms, fringe, 3-D flowers, and more. Each saddle is a work of art and opens up a whole new world of saddle design.

Quilts de Légende

Sponsored by Bohin

All of the quilts in this exhibit are reproductions of antique quilts from the 19th and early 20th centuries, and use reproductions of antique fabrics. The purpose of the Quilts de Légende exhibit is to spotlight beautiful works that respect the techniques of the past and achieve a balance in color choices.


Organized by Judy Gauthier

This exhibit showcases scrap quilts that use blocks and designs from Gauthier's two books, Quilts for Scrap Lovers and Rainbow Quilts for Scrap Lovers. There is an emphasis here on using scraps that are normally considered difficult for quilts, and design elements must incorporate multiple lines of fabric and demonstrate interesting ways of grouping.

Red & White Quilts: 14 Quilts with Timeless Appeal from Today’s Top Designers

Sponsored by Martingale and Moda

Red & white quilts represent a classic color combination with an ageless, inviting appeal. In this exhibit, patchwork takes a starring role as patterns pop off the background and appliqué shines with a simple beauty imbued with shape and style. The quilts here are from a powerhouse collection of designers and are featured in Martingale’s new book of the same name.

RISing Stars – Jill Kerttula and
 Cecilia Koppmann

Sponsored by Aurifil

This annual exhibit features the works of specially selected quilt artists who have developed and demonstrated substantial creative growth over recent time. This exhibit highlights the works of “rising stars” Jill Kerttula and Cecilia Koppmann.

SAQA: Dusk to Dawn

Sponsored by Innova

When the sun dips below the horizon, the world changes. The trees are lit by the silvery light of the moon, and warm lamps glow in a child's room as they listen to a bedtime story. Sleep can bring beautiful and powerful dreams, but also night terrors. Artists in this exhibit created works that interpret what the night means to them.

SAQA: Metamorphosis

Sponsored by Innova

It’s been said that one of the few constants in the universe is change. A metamorphosis can generate transformations in shape, nature, or structure—and all at once or in stages. Changes can be positive, negative, frightening, or enlightening, and they can be physical or philosophical. In this exhibit, artists interpret the theme of “change” in works ranging from the representational to the abstract.

Stories of West africa 
 Sponsored by

 The solo exhibit of Hollis Chatelain’s work is a tribute to the people of West Africa. Fifteen of her art quilts portray the rich African culture, showing the everyday life and the strong sense of community and family unity. The background of each quilt was inspired by the beautiful fabrics omnipresent in West Africa.

Tactile Architecture

Buildings have a long history of inspiring the creative designs of quiltmakers. In the 19th century, American quilters developed classic architectural patterns such as Log Cabin, Schoolhouse, and Brick Wall. This annual juried exhibit challenges quiltmakers to create works based on architectural themes and inspirations.

Texas Guilds' Award-Winning
Traditional Quilts

The Lone Star State is home to scores of guilds and groups where members meet to share friendship, experiences, and to create new quilts. This exhibit features some of the best traditional work done by Texas quilters of all styles and skill levels that have previously won an award in a guild competition. This exhibit will premiere at International Quilt Market and Festival, November 2018.

Textures of the Sierra Nevada

The Sierra Nevada mountain range is a popular destination for recreation, exploration, and the enjoyment of the outdoors and nature. And it has inspired artists for decades. Quilts in this exhibit capture the variety of textures, patterns, and colors of the range’s stunning landscape from Yosemite National Park in the south to the Tahoe Basin in the north.

Trip to the End of the World

Sponsored by European Patchwork Meeting

The end of the world: real or imaginary, charming or paradisiac, serene on an island or amid the excitement of a big city…join us in this creative and boundless journey!

Viewpoints 9: Living Planet
 Curated by Martha Wolfe

This exhibit explores our “Living Planet,” the common space we all share but each of us experiences in a uniquely personal way. The works here interpret universal phenomena through the lens of our lives and surroundings. The inspired subjects range from weather, energy, and the sun and wind to the threat of nuclear war.

With a Little Help from My Friends

Featuring the results from one of Festival’s most creative educational adventures ever! In our “Progressive” classes, students of three teachers – Charlotte Angotti, Debbie Caffrey Batey, and Karen K. Stone – worked on making a series of quilts in three back-to-back stages, with a myriad of design possibilities and without knowing what the others had done. Students could also take any one or all of the three classes. See the instructors’ finished tops along with tops and blocks from their students in this exhibit.