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2025 QUILT SHOW Category Descriptions

For printer-friendly version: Quilt Show Category Descriptions - 2025 Category Descriptions.pdf

General information about selecting the category for your quilt prior to and during registration:

Please note that a quilt may fit into more than one of the categories listed below. The entrant should select the category that best fits the quilt. In addition to the category that is most appropriate for the construction of the quilt, the registration committee will divide categories by size based upon the information provided with the registration form. Should a category have too few entries to fill that particular category, Quilt Show Chairs, in their sole discretion, reserve the right to move those entries to another category and eliminate the underutilized category. Should a category have too many entries, Quilt Show Chairs, in their sole discretion, reserve the right to split that category into two or more categories.

Quilt Top Construction:

Pieced: Piecing is the primary design element of the quilt, accounting for 75% or more of the design.

Applique’: Applique is the primary design element of the quilt, accounting for 75% or more of the design.

Mixed Technique: Applique and piecing are equally important design elements in the quilt.

Art Quilts: Quilt of original design and composition. No commercial patterns are allowed to be used when making quilts for this category.

Kits/BOM: Quilts made from a purchased pattern with pre-selected fabric or where the majority of the fabric is pre-selected or pre-fused. 

Modern: Quilts with high contrast, bold colors, simple shapes, increased use of solid fabrics with neutrals as background; may contain re-interpreted traditional blocks, alternative block structures, or a lack of visible block structure; inspired by modern art and architecture, frequently uses improvisational quilting; embraces minimalism and simplicity.

Special Quilt Techniques: This category may include quilts that are not quilted or have three layers. It includes quilts that do not fit into any other category such as whole cloth quilts, yo-yo quilts, crazy quilts, cathedral windows, wool applique quilts, machine or hand-embroidered quilts etc. The quilts may include innovative techniques such as flower pounding, rusting, embellishments, embroidery, painted surfaces, silk screening, photo transfers or digitized designs/machine embroidery.

Panel Quilts: The front of the quilt must include at least one panel used in its entirety. This category  includes quilts using One-Block-Wonder or other  kaleidoscope techniques where the panel is not apparent.

Hand Piecing: Quilts constructed entirely with hand piecing; including English Paper Piecing or other Millefiori techniques.

Group (3+ people): Three (3) or more persons created the quilt.

Miniatures: Width no more than 24"; length no more than 24". All aspects of the quilt are reduced in scale.  A true miniature uses a 1/12” scale, where a 12” block in a regular quilt would finish at 1” in a miniature quilt. 

Theme: The quilt will contain at least one star block of any pattern and at least one of the colors of the opportunity quilt. Theme quilts will be entered into the show by describing their manner of construction and quilting in the same way as all entries, but if they fit the theme requirements there is a place on the registration form to indicate their inclusion in this secondary category. Theme quilts are judged a second time for theme ribbons. Due to the number of quilts likely to be entered under this broad description, it may be that only ribbon-winning theme quilts will be collected and considered for theme ribbons at the end of the judging process.

Quilting Technique:

Hand quilting:  the quilting design is more than 51% hand quilted

Fixed Arm: the quilting was performed on a machine where the quilt was moved under a fixed needle.

Moveable Arm: the quilting was performed on a machine where the machine needle was moved over the surface of the quilt

Computerized/Digital: more than 51% of the quilting design was performed where the computer moves the machine or the fabric to complete the design. (such as an embroidery machine, Statler stitcher or Intelliquilter).


Generally, quilts will be considered:

Small Up to 30” wide and long perimeter less than 120”

Medium 31–56” wide and up to 72” long perimeter 124”-256”

Large 57-84” wide and up to 96” long perimeter 228”-360”

X-Large over 85” wide and up to 120” long perimeter 360+ inches

Perimeter is used as the final decision for categorizing the size of a quilt. Odd-shaped or round quilts may be assigned to size categories after individual consideration by the registration committee which has discretion to assign size categories to each quilt.

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