National Quilting Day 2023

February 2023 Iowa Quiltscape

As I look at the quilts hanging in our gallery representing grandmothers from around Iowa, I can’t help but think about the generations of women and men who quilted for their own individual reasons. Then I think about how much has changed since many of the quilts were made. Quilting has become its own economy and there are new techniques to making half-square triangles every year as we have new technology available to us.

With these new technologies we have added styles and categories of quilts, and all are celebrated at the Iowa Quilt Museum. We know each of you leans towards certain styles and we’re often told “I’ll pass on this exhibit, it’s not my style”. I get it. I used to feel the same way. But now, I realize I receive more ideas and inspiration from looking at quilt genres that don’t fall into my personal style because they stretch my creativity. They make me think beyond my “usual”. I challenge you to come to exhibits outside of your creative style and see where it can take your quilting in the future.

Join us on social media as we unveil our Iowa Quilt Festival instructor line-up and be the first to hear about a book signing at the Iowa Quilt Festival by a popular fiction author.

Carissa, Museum Director

Iowa Quilt Festival

Where else will you get to see quilts hanging in 19th-century covered bridges, made famous in the well-known movie “Covered Bridges of Madison County”? That’s right. Only in Winterset, Iowa.  

The Iowa Quilt Museum’s annual fundraiser, the Iowa Quilt Festival formerly known as the Airing of the Quilts, embraces what makes our county unique by displaying quilts in our historic bridges, historic square, local library, art center, churches, and more.

With over 250 quilts to motivate you, you are going to want to start creating your own quilts as soon as you get home! There’s more quilting inspiration in our town of 5,500 than you can imagine.

Quilt Luminarium and Ricky Tims

Thursday, June 1, 1 PM to 5 PM and Friday, June 2, 8:30 AM to 5 PM.

A comprehensive quilt symposium that demystifies seemingly complex concepts, teaches mastery of unique techniques and harnesses the power of the ever-elusive muse of creativity.

Participate in two entertaining days and six sessions with Rick Tims, quilting legend and entertainer to learn how to conquer techniques and concepts you may currently shy away from. Courses include:

  • Quilting Caveman Style
  • Convergence Quilts
  • The Elusive Muse Parts 1 & 2
  • The Music in My Quilt & Designing Patchwork
  • No Pins Precision Curved Piecing
  • Foundation String Piecing
  • Fabric Dyeing
  • Rhapsody Quilts
  • Outline Applique

After this course, you will take home a complete workbook of everything Ricky discusses so you can explore the techniques on your own.

With the purchase of the Quilt Luminarium course, you also receive a complimentary ticket to the Saturday, June 3 Airing of the Quilts, free admission to the Iowa Quilt Museum for your entire visit, and a ticket to the Ricky Tim’s Gallery Walk on Wednesday, May 31.

National Quilting Day – Stitch In At The Museum

It’s been a stitch at the museum lately! Especially during our Stitch In At The Museum events. Come join the quilting camaraderie on National Quilting Day, Saturday, March 18th. Stitch your hand project in our beautiful gallery filled with our new exhibit: “Timestamps” – quilts by Ricky Tims.

Bring your hand embroidery, hand quilting, hand piecing, or any other project that doesn’t require a machine, and stitch away with us from 10 AM to 4 PM.

Featured Quilt From Gift Shop

We’re celebrating blue quilts in our gift shop.

This specific quilt is a vintage top that was machine quilted. It measures 82″ x 84″.

If you’d like to purchase this quilt, give us a call or come visit us and we can make that happen!

Facebook Live Events

Make sure you join us on Facebook or Instagram to see videos featuring some of the quilts in our current exhibit “These ARE Your Grandmother’s Quilts”. We go live on Facebook at 9 AM on Tuesdays.

You can see our past videos on our website.

Diane Murtha Joining Us At The Iowa Quilt Festival

Diane Murtha is going to be an instructor at AQS in Paducah in April – if you can’t go there, see her here!  She’ll be teaching the same class at our Iowa Quilt Festival called 3D Fantastical Flowers.

Thank You To Our Sponsors

This is our moment to thank Tony and Jeanne Jacobsen and Piece Works Quilt Shop for their generous sponsorships of Quilt Luminarium with Ricky Tims. They truly believe in the experience and the value provided to the quilting community!

If you’re interested in sponsoring a portion of the Iowa Quilt Festival, please reach out to our Director at

Friends And Exhibitors At The Iowa Quilt Museum

We want to give a shout-out to one of our Iowa Quilt Festival committee members Jessica Plunkett, who is on the faculty at QuiltCon 2023. She also has a quilt at Quilt Con and a block of the month sew-along program with Alison Glass, using Jessica’s “Carousel Medallion Quilt” design. Follow Jessica to stay up to date on this fun sew-along!

In addition to keeping you up-to-date on all of the happenings here at the IQM, we also use our Iowa QuiltScape messages to share quilt-related news and events happening across our great state. Check it out!

Quilt Events in Iowa

Cabin Fever Bingo

Cabin Fever Bingo is a fun NEW interactive shop hop in central Iowa that takes place February 6-28. . Visit participating shops to get your bingo cards marked and win prizes. Every “bingo” will win you a new prize! Once done, turn in your card to any participating shop and earn a $10 gift certificate to that shop to use on a later purchase! Visit at least 10 participating shops to be eligible to win in the Grand Prize Drawing. 1st Prize: $200 Gift Certificate 2nd Prize: $100 Gift Certificate 3rd Prize: $50 Gift Certificate

Participating Shops Include:

Pieceworks Quilt Shop – Winterset, IA

Creekside Quilting – Clive, IA

Redfield Quilt Shop – Redfield, IA

Fabrics & Fun – Windsor Heights, IA

Quilt With Us – Lucas, IA

Sew Bee It – Jewell, IA

Log Cabin Quilt Shop – Elk Horn, IA

Quilter’s Cupboard, Ankeny, IA

The Iowa Quilt Block – West Des Moines, IA

Mashe Modern – Dallas Center, IA

Quilting Connection – Ames, IA

The STITCH – Jefferson, IA

Off the Rails Quilting – Bondurant, IA

Rainbows & Calico Things – Williamsburg, IA

Woodside Quilting – Des Moines, IA

I-80 Quilters One-Stop Shopping Event

Sunday, February 20, 2023. Come and shop 17 different quilt-related vendors. Gourmet Lunch available for purchase. Raffle Quilt Tickets for sale for a quilt made by Iowa County Heartland Quilters. The Gathering Barn I-80 Exit 220 350 W. Evans St. Williamsburg, IA

Location: 350 W. Evans St, Williamsburg, IA

Pillow Class at Farmer’s Daughters Quilts

Sunday, February 20 from 1 PM to 4 PM. Join Jan and learn the basics for making custom pillows. During the class, you will complete a pillow (maybe 2) with a zipper closing. You will also come away with tips and ideas to make a variety of pillows for your home. The remainder of the panel in the kit can be used in up to 4 additional projects. The cost of the class is $20 plus the price of the kit which can be purchased on the day of the class. Call the shop or message us if interested in this fun class!

Location: 21 E Charles St, Oelwein, IA

Thank you for reading Iowa QuiltScape.
Please share us with a friend!

Iowa QuiltScape is a feature of the Iowa Quilt Museum’s periodical e-newsletter, and will highlight quilting events happening all around the state. The goal of Iowa QuiltScape is to provide a central place for Iowa quilting organizations to share upcoming events and help quilters and quilter lovers across Iowa reach a broader audience.

If you have an event you would like to share via Iowa QuiltScape, send your information to
Museum Director Carissa Heckathorn:

If you’re reading this but it didn’t come to your inbox, use the Email Signup form on the top of this page to make sure you’re on the list and don’t miss out on any Iowa QuiltScape news!

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