Friday, March 15, 2019

30 Quilt Designs Challenge Announcement

This is the main post for the third annual Quilt Design Challenge I host on Instagram. It gives me a thrill to write that sentence!
Profuse apologies that this was not up two days ago as planned... Real Life got in the way, and I was waiting on a response from a potential sponsor, and then Instagram, where I originally planned to set up a private account, went whackola, but so did FaceBook... All good, though. Here we go!

Here is the link to the first challenge that I co-hosted with Lisa of Sunlight in Winter Quilts
Here is the link to the second challenge in 2018 hosted by moi.
And now, on with the deets of the third challenge!
Feel free to grab this graphic for your blog, sidebar, or Instagram post.

The main difference this year is how we are going to share our quilt designs. In the first year a couple of people mentioned a concern about others stealing their designs. This is a valid concern. In the second year, I believe we had two people ask (yay, that they at least asked first) if they could make one of the designers' designs for personal use. Although this is a high compliment, it is also disconcerting, because many of the group's designs over the past two years have been published in magazines. Magazines do not want the quilts within the issue to have been already made and in public view.

I actually pulled my design #5 off Instagram last year when it got a TON of likes and someone had said something to the effect of it being similar to a design she'd been playing with. I submitted it pronto to Modern Patchwork and it got accepted and published in the September issue!

Something that is really intriguing is how each year, unbeknownst to each other, two or more designers have posted designs on the same day that are sort of echoes of each other! Wee-ooh, wee-ooh, Twilight Zone working. Seriously, I have read countless stories of authors, artists, poets, songwriters, painters, saying how they sometimes tap into this creative force and the work takes on a life of its own, and they just are the vehicle through which inspiration flows. I get that, and I believe it.

In view of this concern, I am setting up a private FaceBook group where only those who are in the challenge will be able to view the designs. Part of me is sad to do this because if all artists didn't share their designs because of being afraid of having them stolen, we'd have no art. No paintings, no music, no poetry, no get the idea.

Another reason for the delay in posting, is that I could not for the life of me create a private group; spent a couple of hours yesterday and again this morning, googled it, followed the steps...kept getting this message: "Please add at least one friend to this group" and I'd added three, and it still gave me that message, grr! I am not much of a FaceBook user, have little love for it, so wrote to my friend Leanne of Devoted Quilter, and she set up the private group no prob, first time she did something like that too! Clearly I was doing something wrong, or I don't have enough friends (11 LOL) to be allowed to set one up? Doesn't matter; it is a thing. If you want to be a part of the challenge this year, send a request with your first quilt design to me. We are 30QuiltDesigns2019 on FaceBook.

Okay enough of the protective stuff, here are the details for this year!


The lovely Darla of Clinton Modern Creative is back this year with a $25 gift certificate to her wonderful shop in Saskatchewan for one Canadian designer who completes the challenge.

I was approached a month ago by...
Brenda, the owner of Quilt Designs in the Yard, also lives in Saskatchewan, Canada. She also writes a blog, and is on FaceBook. Basically, she prints quilts on aluminum, similar to barn quilts, but on a smaller basis, so you can use them as backyard décor.

She makes two sizes, 60 cm and 30 cm. One winner who completes the challenge will win a 60 cm backyard quilt, the design being one of her own 30 designs! Isn't that just the coolest?! The prize is valued at $200, and, due to shipping costs as well as being a fledgling business, will only be available to a Canadian resident.

Tayva of Cali Quilt Co. was a wonderful sponsor of my Postcard from Sweden QAL last year, hosted by yours truly, along with my good friend Helen of Midget Gem Quilts. She is back to sponsor a winner with a $25 gift certificate to her lovely shop!

Who can participate:
Anyone. Simply send me your first design by email (ephdra at gmail dot com) and then I can invite you to join the private group.

  • Design a quilt block or an entire quilt.  Very important: if you draw a quilt block, please put a few together to see what an overall pattern might look like.  Add some colour.  **Just as Rachel said in her challenge, you can use non-original blocks, but re-invent them by changing up colour or value, or put two non-original different ones together and see what magic can occur!
  • You may submit hand-drawn designs or digital designs.
  • No construction directions needed.
  • The goal is to create 30 quilt (not quilt block, I am hoping to be very clear this year!) designs between now and May 15. That is 61 days, so plan on doing a design every other day.

  • Take a photo of your design, number it, (see above for how I did mine) and post it to the private FaceBook group, 30QuiltDesigns2019.  Of course, if you want to show the world your designs, feel free, using the hashtag I'll set up:
  • We will have a checkpoint at the 10 designs point, about a third of the way in to the challenge. If someone has posted four or fewer quilt designs, unfortunately that person will be blocked from the FaceBook group.
  • Please tag each photo @mmmquilts if you do post on Instagram so I can see your designs!
  • Be sure to number and date each design. 
  • To be eligible for prizes, be sure to follow @mmmquilts on Instagram, and I'd love it if you'd also follow my blog. See the ways to follow in my sidebar.

  • March 15 - May15, 2019

  • Henri Matisse said, "Creativity takes courage."
  • And, as Helen Keller said, "Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing at all." 
  • And from Seth Godin, whose thoughtful and thought-provoking messages are deposited into my inbox each day, "If it scares you, it might be a good thing to try."

Speaking of joining challenges, I've signed up for I believe the fourth year (must look back) for Sarah's (Confessions of a Fabric Addict) Hands2Help Comfort Quilt Challenge. It is a super-worthy cause, with five organizations to which you can donate a quilt you make. Check out all the posts this week on Sarah's blog that give details about the organizations, sign up on the Google form, and have the chance to even win a sign-up prize. 


  1. You know I'm in! Wait, did you hear my to-make list groan as I said that? I'm pretty sure I still have quilt designs from ALL of the previous challenges waiting for their turn to be turned into actual quilts, lol. And I'm signed up for Sarah's Hands 2 Help, too, but I'm combining that with my March Island Batik challenge project, so it's not actually adding to the to-do list. I can't wait to see all the designs that will come from this year's challenge :)

  2. So in on this!!! It was great last year and I can't wait to start it up this year!!!

  3. This sounds fun. I have a couple of ideas in mind. Hopefully work is slowing down so I have time to do some things I want to do.

  4. I'm heading to my quilt room to find my sketch pad -- or I might grab this little notebook right here by me. I need to get designing! Count me in -- this is so much fun!

  5. Have fun with the challenge. With a hectic schedule this April (a week long business trip, Easter and a family wedding out of town) I'm just not going to be able to play along.

  6. Great challenge, I hope to be able to join in for part of it.

  7. Good luck to everyone. I took part last year and the creative genius shared was ahhhsome. I’m sad to say that I cannot take part this year due to other commitments...but it might be just as well because as soon as I draw/design something I feel a need to make it real. At least three of the virtual quilts I designed last year are now birthed and patterns available in Make Modern magazine. I’m sad that I won’t be able to see what you guys are up to but I do understand that there is a need to find ways to protect our work. Have fun fun fun.

  8. I want in! I really enjoyed doing this last year on IG. I have sent a join request to the FB group.