The Iron Quilter’s Challenge !!

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I had the pleasure to attend the Iron Quilter’s Challenge, during the quilt festival at the Long Beach Convention Center, and it was UNFORGETTABLE !!
I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I was excited about the event when I first read about it.
“Culinary artists have done it, and now fabric artists try their hand (or hands) in Quilting Stadium! Be part of a fun and lively new event during Quilt Festival in Long Beach!

Based on the popular “Iron Chef” television show, The Iron Quilter Challenge pits three well-known quilters (Charlotte Angotti, Debbie Caffrey, and Gyleen X. Fitzgerald) and their teams against one another to see who can create the best finished quilt in an allotted time period. And the audience gets to vote on the winner!

Enjoy a fun-filled night of fast stitching, trash talking, and creativity unleashed as you mingle with fellow attendees and move from contestant to contestant, checking in on their progress.

The evening will also feature an audience Show and Tell, a cash bar, and tons of prize giveaways, including a Bernina 550 QE sewing machine!”

Tell me that that wouldn’t convince you to go!? πŸ™‚

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Here are the team leaders: Debbie Caffrey leading her team ” Caffrey’s Cohorts” , Gyleen X. Fitzgerald leading her team “Take Five” and Charlotte Angotti leading her team ” Angotti’s Avengers”.
Each team was given a bundle of fabric to design a quilt top in one hour and fifteen minutes! The team members had not seen the fabric until that very day, but the team captains had seen the fabric once beforehand to have an idea of what they’d be working with.

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When the clock began to countdown, the ladies grabbed their fabric and off they went!!

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Debbie and her team were given a fabric bundle by Northcott, Stonehedge “Out of this World” , which also glowed in the dark! πŸ™‚ I’m definitely looking into some of that fabric online!
They got started on cutting and planning on the spot what they were going to put together. Debbie is such an energetic woman, she had time to talk to the crowd, answer some questions and even sip on her beer while she worked on her quilt top with her team!

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Gyleen and her team got the Hoffman California Fabric “Natural Instincts” bundle of fabric. Her and her team brainstorm aloud and are in full speeding cutting their fabric to start sewing it together!

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Charlotte and her team were lighting fast with the fabric cutting and brainstorming ideas for the quilt top. They were given the Moda “Nature’s Basket” bundle of fabric.
Charlotte was having a great time talking with the crowd and her competition.

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When I first entered the “Quilting Stadium” I was given a sheet with two raffle tickets attached, an adorable mini charm pack, and a marble.
The marble was used to vote for the winning quilt top at the end of the event.

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While the teams were quilting away, there were many amazing door prizes being raffled off! πŸ™‚
Door prizes contributed by Hoffman California Fabrics, Michael Miller Fabrics, Moda Fabrics ,Northcott, Interweave / Quilting Arts , Cloth Paper Scissors, Landauer Publishing , Martingale, Kai scissors, MistyFuse, Wonderfil Threads, SAS Shoemakers , Oliso Irons, Pellon USA , Prym Consumer USA and Bernina of America.

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The beautiful Pokey Bolton , Chief Creative officer at Quilts , Inc., hosted the entire event! She kept the night running smoothly with her bubbly personality!

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20130805-003927.jpgIn between checking on the teams progress, there was a Show and Tell segment where Joy here showed her quilt top that she made for her best friend Teresa. She named this quilt “DONE!”, she says her best friend, Teresa, made her rip out the seams if they were crooked, but thanks to Teresa, Joy was very proud of her perfect points on her quilt top. Way to go, Joy!
πŸ™‚

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With 51 minutes on the clock,this was the team’s progress. As you can see, they’re beginning to fill their idea board with sewn pieces to start putting their quilt top together!

20130805-005157.jpgThere were some chips and dip available to attendees , as well as a bar to buy sodas, water and wine.

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On display were the four quilts that were made at the Iron Quilter Challenge/Cincinnati, in April. The quilts made at this Iron Quilter Challenge ,plus the ones from Cincinnati , will be auctioned in November at the quilt festival in Houston to benefit The Texas Quilt Museum.

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At 37 minutes, the teams are working hard at putting their quilt tops together. I continued to be impressed at how well they were able to work , not only with it being a competition, but not having seeing the fabric before, creating the pattern from scratch, timed, AND with a live audience! I would be nervous as can be!
My hats off to these quilters, I think that they’re incredible! πŸ™‚

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With the time ticking down with 28 minutes left, Debbie and Gyleen decided to some line dancing with the crowd! It was so much fun seeing them let loose and have fun during this event! I am much more excited for the quilt festivals and challenges to come!

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As the countdown continues, the team’s start to work on finishing touches on their quilt tops and Pokey pulls a couple more raffle tickets. AND I WON SOME DOOR PRIZES!!! I don’t often win too many raffles, so I was a bit skeptical that I had really heard the numbers on my ticket CORRECTLY! But I did and I went home with some Omnigrid rulers! πŸ™‚

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At the ten minute mark, the teams were granted an extra ten minutes to finish their quilt tops.
With that said, they got to sewing and snipping off threads and trimming edges and pressing seams!

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With 15 seconds left on the clock, Debbie and her team toast ,with some champagne ,to their hard work on a fun quilt.

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Gyleen and her team pose in a group picture with their unique quilt top.

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And Charlotte and her team shout some hoorays for their great team work and pretty quilt top!

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While waiting to go on stage to present their quilt tops, Debbie and Gyleen had a little friendly competition to see who could outshine the other with their quilt tops! πŸ™‚
I genuinely had such a great time seeing such talented people like these be able to compete and have friendly rivalries, it made the event that much more fun and entertaining. πŸ™‚

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After each quilt top was presented on stage, the attendees then voted for their favorite quilt top by placing the marble, they were given upon entry at the event, into the team captains bowl.

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While everyone is voting, the members of every team was brought on stage to be recognized and gifted with a bag of goodies for participating in this fun event! πŸ™‚
Are you ready to hear who won?!
****DRUMROLL PLEASE****

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And the winner is CHARLOTTE ANGOTTI AND THE ANGOTTI’S AVENGERS!!!! πŸ™‚
It was hard to snap a picture with her standing still, but if I had won an Iron Quilters Challenge, I’d be uber excited and jumping with joy too! Congratulations Charlotte ! πŸ™‚ You and your team did a fantastic job!

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Some hugs and congratulations from Debbie and Gyleen, and an overjoyed toast from Charlotte!
It was a great experience having being at this Iron Quilters Challenge! These wonderful ladies are so talented and I urge you to check out their websites (by clicking on their names in the beginning of this post) and get inspired and encouraged to quilt on!

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Did you forget about the Bernina 500 QE sewing machine giveaway!?
Colleen, from Redondo Beach, was beyond shocked to have had her raffle ticket number called out!!!! She sat in her chair for about 5 seconds saying “that’s me, that’s me!!! That’s me!! That’s me!!” And as she walked on stage to receive her Bernina, she was still in shock and awe that she had won! πŸ™‚
As much as I wanted to win this sewing machine, I was very happy to see her so overwhelmed and overjoyed with her new Bernina! Congratulations Colleen and I hope to see you create beautiful things on your new Bernina!

Well there you have it folks! The Iron Quilter Challenge hosted at the 2013 Quilt Festival at the Long Beach Convention Center!
Thank you all for reading, I hope I was able to make you feel like you were actually at the event, and IF you were at the event, make sure to share and forward this to your friends and let them know how much fun we had!

Toodles for now,
Diana and Ray<3

12 responses to “The Iron Quilter’s Challenge !!

  1. Hi Ray,
    Wow!!!! Thanks for this very fun post! I was at the Long Beach Quilt Show!!! I live about an hour north, and at the time wasn’t yet a quilter. I just made my first “real” quilt a year ago. I’d been a life long sewer and fashion designer, and then at one of these earlier shows we (mom & I) bought a rag quilt kit! We made it, and then probably 100 more!!!! So since we always made rag quilts, and they’re just squares, I never considered them real quilting, Real Quilting, well that was what was at these shows! So a year ago I bought a craftsy class and I’m in love and so addicted to quilting now! I wish I could have been there to see it live! But second best was this post! I’m sad they have moved the show to Oregon, but am looking forward to Pasadena!

    • It was quite the event!! And i had a great time, I couldn’t help but take pictures and document it all for others to also enjoy!
      Thank you so much for reading!
      If you are an Eleanor Burns fan, stay tuned for a post on her Bed Turning and Tea Event , where she shows so many quilts, patterns and nick-nacks she has collected through the years! So many antique patterns and quilts!

    • Thank you for reading!
      They are all lovely ladies!! I was very fortunate to have attended and was more than happy to document the event!
      As mentioned to the previous comment, I attended Eleanor Burns Bed turning and Tea event, which i will be posting soon! so do stay tuned for that, as well as a goodie bag giveaway including an AUTOGRAPHED copy of El’s book!

  2. Pingback: Quilt Festival/Long Beach: Some Of My Favorite Memories « pokey's ponderings·

  3. I love my Bernina. I’ll be posting pictures of my work room on my blog shortly. You inspired me to record it as it is now.

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