It's a Charming Quilt Exhibit - Winning Entries

Posted by Alexandra Webb on

This past weekend, the Grey County Charmers Quilt Club proudly displayed the quilts they have been so dedicated to creating for the past year. It’s a Charming Quilt World was an exhibit of 96 commemorative charm quilts, each featuring at least 500 unique pieces of fabric, lovingly curated from each quilters own stash and that of their fellow quilters. As Lynne Mokriy so eloquently stated in her own quilt story, each quilt represents "threads of connection: a quilted chronicle of friendship, fabric and life."

The following are the stories of the winning quilts from the Viewer’s Choice voting that occurred over the course of the show. 

Best of Show 

My Quilt of Many Fabrics, by Susan Pirie

“I was inspired to make this quilt after seeing a similar quilt at the Bracebridge Quilt Show, knowing I had a lot of scraps that I wanted to use up.  Since I was planning to make the quilt anyway, I readily joined the Charmers Club without really reading the criteria.  I had not originally intended that each fabric be unique.  However, I was determined to make this quilt and with the help of friends, was able to do so.”


1st Place
A Ripple In Time by Nancy Fisher

“This is “Tumbling Blocks,” a traditional design.  I have been quilting for 17 years.   This will be for my grandson when he moves to a big bed.”

2nd Place
Night Time Stitching by Andrea Neil

“When I took on this challenge of making a charm quilt, I wanted something that I could work on in the evening.  So I decided to use E.P.P. (English Paper Piecing) as my technique.  It involves covering a card stock shape with fabric (in my case, a hexagon) and sewing all the pieces together by hand.  I tried to keep the colours together and fade to the next colour.  

I fussy cut some of the fabrics to focus on a particular part of the design within the fabric.  

It was a challenge to keep track of all the fabrics so that I didn’t use one twice.  Some fabric came from Guild friends who were very generous to pass fabric my way.  My mom also put fabrics aside for me from her collection and I tried to include a piece from every fabric I own.  As the challenge was coming to an end, I became worried that I wouldn’t finish.  So I even took my hand sewing to work to do over my lunch hour.  My son commented, “Mom, you’ve been working on that forever!  When are you going to be finished?”  Even as I write this, my quilt isn’t finished.  But I’m determined to complete it!  The long-arm quilting will be done by me.  I‘ve been pondering how I will quilt it and I guess it will all come down to how much time is left.  It will be as much a surprise to me as to you, seeing how it will look in the end!”

3rd Place
Morris 506 by Carol Anne Tolton

“When I heard about the “It’s a Charming Quilt World” Exhibit, I knew I had to join in.  I have been collecting William Morris fabrics for over 20 years, and I was sure that making a quilt from 500 different ones would be no problem!

I decided to use 5” squares for this project because I had many pre-cut charm packs to get me started.  I reached 450 fabrics of my own.  My friend, Sheila O’Hagan—also a William Morris fabric collector—contributed the rest.

It was so much fun to go through my collection and actually make something out of my much loved fabrics.  I must say though, 505 five inch  squares didn’t make much of a dent in my stash….

There are 506 different fabrics in this quilt, thus the name “Morris 506.””


1st Place
Rob From Peter to Pay Paul by Jackie James

“The Charm Quilt challenge presented an exciting opportunity for me especially since I’ve been quilting for 30 years.  This being my second charm quilt, I joined two other quilters who attended Anne Ruhl’s trunk show.  We decided to take on the challenge and even traded fabrics amongst ourselves.  While perusing Pinterest, I stumbled upon a captivating quilt with no pattern available. Undeterred, I drafted the two blocks myself.  The judges graciously approved the use of background fabric as one of our fabrics.  The real puzzle was arranging the fabrics in a pleasing way, but luckily, my fellow quilting friends generously donated specific colours.  Now, I’m thrilled with the results of my Charm Quilt!

Remember, every challenge in quilting is an opportunity for growth and creativity. Your unique approach and resourcefulness truly shine through in your quilt.”

2nd Place
Lotta by Donna Blue

I started with a wall hanging that was a Scottish landscape.  I bit off more than I could chew.  I’ll finish that one someday.

With a “Lotta” help from my friends, I had enough different fabric and trim to finish her on time.  So my quilt’s name is Lotta and I know how lucky I am to have such good friends.”

3rd Place
Smash by Anne Ruhl

“I first saw this quilt on the cover of Quilter’s Newsletter Magazine in 2005 and knew I would make it someday.  The design is called “Everyday Best” by Becky Goldsmith.  

I am very proud of this quilt. Looking at it makes me feel happy!  The biggest challenge was finding over 100 different green fabrics from my stash for the leaves and stems in the border.  As it turned out, I didn’t even use all my greens.  

This quilt is pieced and paper-pieced.  Appliqué is both hand-turned (in the centres of the plates) and raw-edge appliquéd (on the flowers and leaves).  It was machine-quilted and appliquéd on my long-arm.  All work done by me.”


1st Place
Cathedral Window by Bonnie Greason

“This quilt was started by my mother, Patricia Longmere, in the 1970’s in London, Ontario.  She always had a bit of it in her bag and would stitch away while waiting for appointments or visiting with family or friends.  She would gather 2” squares for the windows from her stash and from her quilting friends. 

With her passing, using a portion of her work that had not yet been attached and a portion of my own work, I made it into four small wall hangings for each of my siblings and a shroud for her ashes.  I’ve continued to add to it since then.  The greatest challenge has been trying to find more of the base fabric.

There is currently a 6” x 100” strip to be added and the new windows to be filled.  I still have the stash of window pieces she had collected and I have added lots of my own.  It is a vintage quilt that has become a 50 year project!  And it is still ongoing.”

2nd Place
President's Charm Quilt by Christine Whitehouse

“The Royal City Quilter’s Guild of Guelph had the tradition of presenting the out-going President with a memento from guild members as a thank you in the form of fabric that was donated anonymously. 

After completing my 2 year term in 2002,  I received a beautiful stack of just over 500 five inch charm squares of cheerful prints and a diverse range of colours. I got right to work as it’s generally acknowledged and anticipated a quilt will be made from these fabrics and presented at Guild.  

A search began over the summer to find a pattern to fulfill my goal.  

I was determined to use all or as many of the gifted charm squares as possible. To this end, I found “Morning Star,” a pattern by Pat Speth from the book of Nickel Quilts written by Pat Speth and Charlene Thode.

Many months flew by as I worked to construct the quilt top, not fully realizing the size of  the finished quilt until it was toooo late. It’s a BIG quilt!!!.  In my desire to use all of the charms, I pieced the remaining pastels into a 45 inch square for the centre back, adding borders to meet the required size for a backing.  I achieved my goal of using all the charms, although there may just be a few stragglers still in the sewing room.

As promised the completed quilt was shown at the Guild meeting and it now remains in rotation with other quilts on the guest bed in our home.”

3rd Place
Tie Quilt for the Boys by Leslie Mactaggart

“My mother-in-law, Pearl Mactaggart, was a true farm wife and mother.  She raised dairy cows, beef cattle and sheep, had beautiful gardens and loved to sew.  She was taught by her mother how to rug-hook, braid rugs, make clothes including wedding and bridesmaid dresses, and especially quilt.  She repurposed old dresses, aprons and any other fabric to make her lovely hand-quilted designs.  Her favourite pattern was the Dresden Plate. 

Her two sons both went to a one-room school house near Bolton and from there, on to University.  They both ended up with corporate jobs where they wore suits and ties to work everyday.  Pearl got them to donate their old ties for her crazy quilt. She commented that she had to wash all the ties first because of all the food stains!  She assembled them in pleasing squares and embroidered on the seam lines.  She loved prairie points and finished many of her quilts with them. 

Pearl passed away in 2000 and her sons in 2018 and 2020.  The tie quilt lives on as a special memory of all of them.”

Most Number of Fabrics

Threads of Connection by Lynne Mokriy
3268 different fabrics

Threads of Connection: A quilted chronicle of friendship, fabric and life. 

I entered this exhibit to show, not just a quilt, but a narrative of connection, creativity and personal growth.  Each fabric holds, within it, a memory: of friendships forged while browsing fabric stores, of the history and stories behind the fabrics themselves and of snapshots of my life as a quilter.

Moreover, the quilt embodies the spirit of giving, as many of the fabrics were used in the quilts I made for special people or special occasions.  Each stitch is a token of love and celebration.

By showcasing this quilt, I hope to invite others into this rich tapestry of experiences, to inspire and be inspired, and to celebrate the beauty that emerges when creativity and friendship intertwine.”

Most Interesting Interpretation

All Good Things by Linda Fielding

“As a nature lover I have always wanted to try a landscape wall hanging and this project is my first attempt.  It was designed to house Mr. Panda Bear. He, however, had other ideas and with his 275 fabric pieces, outgrew his fabric home and had to be content with a different perspective.  

The writing on the quilt, “All Good Things are Wild and Free,” is a quote from the writings of Henry David Thoreau, an American author and naturalist.  

To complete this quilt, wool couching was used for the writing, to imitate fur and affix the bear’s raw edge appliqué fabric pieces.  Thread painting, appliqué and free motion quilting helped to form the landscape.  I have been challenged to try new techniques and I appreciate the opportunity to display the result.”

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