A quilt of deep blues, striking greens, bright yellows and stark whites was lowered from the rafters of the Luther F. Carson Center on Tuesday evening to receive the biggest award of Paducah's quilt show: the coveted Best in Show trophy.
For the second time in seven years, European quilter Ted Storm took home the top honor at the American Quilter's Society's Best in Show for Quilt Week in Paducah on Tuesday evening. The Dutch quilter's work, "Elated," won Best in Show at AQS's Lancaster show earlier this year. Storm, who resides in 's-Gravenzande, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands, was not able to attend the show to accept the award due to previous engagements.
"Unfortunately, I could not make it to Paducah," Storm said in a statement. "Winning the Best in Show in Paducah is almost unreal. This time, I will part with my quilt."
Best in Show winners are traditionally given the option to sell their quilt to the AQS for $20,000. The quilts then remain in the National Quilt Museum's permanent collection. This year, at the museum, 27 of the 29 quilts are being shown as a celebration of the AQS's 30th quilt show. Storm won her first Best in Show in 2008, but the quilt was promised to a family member and she did not sell it to the National Quilt Museum. This year, the quilt will stay in Paducah.
Other top awards went to Robin Gausbeck, who won in the best miniature quilt category for her "Dans le Bains Du Maroc;" Judith Phelps, whose work "The Value of Gears" won best wall quilt; Gail Stefanik and Gail Hutchinson, who won best long arm, mid arm quilt for "Mistaken Identity;" Sue Nickels and Pat Holly, who won best home machine quilt for "Two of Us;" and "Oriental Puzzle," by Hitomi Kanazawa, who won for best hand quilt.
Quilt Week, Paducah, the AQS's annual week-long show, runs through Saturday in Paducah. The annual show brings in more than 30,000 tourists from around the world into the city, and has an estimated $20 million economic impact on the area. The show is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, as well. There have been 11,851 quilts showed in Paducah over the 30 years.
The 2014 Quilt Week First Place Winners
Miniature quilts: "Mandala" by Kumiko Frydl
Small wall quilts, first entry category: "Tuning Fork #12" by Heather Pregger
Small wall quilts, pictorial: "Panning for Gold" by Lea McComas
Small wall quilts, long arm or mid arm: "Upper Body Work Out Improved" by Laura Trenbeath
Small wall quilts, home machine quilted: "Bradford Fantasy #1" by Caryl Bryer Fallert-Gentry
Small wall quilts, hand quilted: "Rose Garden" by Kumiko Funaki
Group quilts: "Learn and Grow" by the Sugar Cube Quilters
Large wall quilts, modern: "Dotting Inside the Box" by Sandy Snow
Large wall quilts, pictorial: "All Together" by Miyama and Masanobu Miyama
Large wall quilts, long arm or mid arm: "Millefiori" by Sherry Rogers-Harrison
Large wall quilts, home machine: "Magnolia" by Sylvia Gegaregian
Large wall quilts, hand quilted: "Four Seasons for Kirara" by Ayako Kawakami
Bed quilts, first entry: "Perseverance" by Linda Neal and Jackie Brown
Bed quilts, long arm or mid arm: "Portland Rose" by Linda Hrcka and Lisa Bongean
Bed quilts, home machine: "Snow Flowers" by Susan Stewart
Bed quilts, hand quilted: "Primitive Web" by Linda M. Roy
Wall quilt, long arm, mid arm: "Kaleidoscopic Calamity" by Margaret Solomon
Wall quilt, home machine: "Colombine Serenade" by Sandra Leichner
Wall quilt, hand quilted: "Blue Tone" by Aki Sakai
Best miniature quilt: "Dans le Bains Du Maroc" by Robin Gausbeck
Best wall quilt: "The Value of Gears" by Judith Phelps
Best long arm, mid arm quilt: "Mistaken Identity" by Gail Stefanik and Gail Hutchinson.
Best home machine quilt: "Two of Us" by Sue Nickels and Pat Holly
Best hand quilt: "Oriental Puzzle" by Hitomi Kanazawa