Friday, 19 August 2016

Festival of Quilts 2016

This week has flown by and it is hard to believe it is a week since I visited the Festival of Quilts (FOQ) at the NEC Birmingham last Friday. Normally I visit this exhibition with friends each year but this year owing to holidays and other factors I went alone. So that I could share the experience with friends I took lots and lots of photos and was astonished when I got home and downloaded them. There were 205 images! Far too many to share here so I have picked out a few of favourites. 

A section of the winning Group Quilt

The wonderful thing about the FOQ is the exhibition combines amateur and professional exhibitors. The range of styles and techniques is breath taking and includes anyone who has the skill, talent and enthusiasm to take part. The picture above shows some of the detail of the winning group quilt. I was unable to discover the makers as so many people, unsurprisingly, were clustered around looking at the fine detail.  

Children are encouraged to take part too either individually or as a group.

Under the Tropical Sea by Matilda Tate

This super colourful quilt was from the Age 5 - 8 category.

That's The Way to Do It by Holly Neeve

This cheerful beach scene was from the Age 9 - 11 category.

The ideas and skill from such young people is just amazing. One can only imagine what they will be producing in 10 to 15 years time. 

Lobster Pots by Shenley Brook End Primary School

This lovely underwater scene came from my local Primary school, which was a lovely surprise. I did a double take when I saw the label and wondered if any of them would like to join JETS?!

Unfortunately I did not record the maker of this wonderful traditional quilt.

Other Places by Sandra Newton 

This was a miniature quilt and the detail was amazing. The quote stitched into it also attracted me:

take me
to the places on the earth
that teach you how to dance

Memories of Times Past by Ann Beare

This art quilt by Ann Beare was very evocative of places in my past too.

Part of the Medieval Quilts created by the Magna Carta Quilters Group
 This is part of the Medieval Quilts created by the 26 members of the Magna Carta Quilters Group as part of the celebrations in 2015 of the 800th Anniversary of the signing of the Magna Carta at Runnymeade. There were four Medieval Quilts telling the story of how the Magna Carta came to be, and four Legacy Quilts, celebrating key figures who represent aspects of Human Rights over the centuries. 

The detail depicted in applique and embroidery was exquisite.

There are a number of Galleries within the FOQ showing the work of international textile artists and groups. Information about all the different groups can be found here.

The one that drew me most this year was Art Textiles: Made in Britain: Concealed.
I am probably biased because it featured work of some of my favourite Textile Artists. 

I love the sketch-like quality Hilary Beatties stitchwork.  

Hilary Beattie

Hilary Beattie

Hilary Beattie

The combination of plant images and graffiti in the  landscape having their own beauty captured by Louise Baldwin.

Louise Baldwin

Louise Baldwin

Louise Baldwin

 Rosie James work: The hidden threads that join us, was very thought provoking.

Rosie James

Rosie James

Rosie James

The depth of Cas Holmes work always captures me, particularly the focus on hidden meanings and emotions expressed in her work. 

Cas Holmes

Cas Holmes

Cas Holmes

Cas Holmes

Cas Holmes

This is only a tiny selection of the wonderful FOQ exhibition. I have been attending the event for a number of years now but this year seemed to be exceptional. 
A great day, a great experience and many happy memories (and photos) to reflect on.  


  1. Wow, that certainly was an impressive show. What a delight to see, thanks for sharing.

  2. It was a great day and I'm still enjoying trawling through all the photos.

  3. This looks like an amazing exhibition that you attended. I'm not a quilter but I do admire quilts and those with quilting skills. Some of them look like a painting! The first photo is my favorite. Enjoy your weekend dear Annie. Pat xx

    1. I'm not a quilter either Pat but the skill and imagination of all the exhibitors is very inspiring. Have a lovely weekend.

  4. What an inspiring festival celebrating amazing quilting from those of all ages! I'm glad you could get there again this year. Thank you for sharing. Have a lovely Sunday and week ahead.


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