It’s Tanana Valley State Fair time! The theme for this year’s fair is “Diamonds are Fair Ever”, to celebrate 75 fairs. It’s not the 75th anniversary, as there were a couple of years during WWII that the Fair wasn’t held, and I believe there is also one year the Fair wasn’t held due to funding issues.
I helped with entries to the quilt division yesterday (Saturday, 7/29), which was… interesting! It was either very busy, or else dead quiet, but I still didn’t get to see all the entries. Organized chaos describes entry day perfectly!
Today I helped judge the needlework entries. What a thrill to go “behind the scenes” and learn about that process! If you want to learn what makes a good entry, judge at the fair! I will be much more meticulous about my fair entries in the future.
I managed to enter six different items in the fair, in five divisions.
- Needlework Division, naturally (in a different class than I judged, of course!), with a small crazy quilted bag
- Handcraft Division, with a small embroidered magnet
I purchased three bags of magnet makings from the local thrift store, and just had to make some magnets, which I took to the craft fair a few weeks ago. I think I got a first in the class.
- Doll Division, with a flat angel
Couldn’t resist making another angel! I hope she gets to travel with a Fair award! Placed third in her class, against some very stiff competition! Two much larger, much more complicated dolls won first and second.
- Sewing Division, with a matching ball cap and bag, that went into seperate lots, made from a prom dress rescued from the transfer station
The prom dress bag was supposed to be my Whipup entry in the bag contest, but I finished it an hour and a half after the contest closed, and I wasn’t perfectly happy with it at that point anyway. To make the bag, I took the bodice of the prom dress, removed the zipper and boning, lopped off the point in the front, and then embellished the bag with poetry dog tags and ID bracelet alphabet beads, listing qualities that are the keys to my heart. I used Peltex as an interfacing, but it didn’t quite make it all the way to the handles. The idea originated when the ex made the off-hand remark, responding to something I said about needing a key, that he needed the key to my heart. So there it is, spelled out for him! If he’d ever take the time to read it… yeah, right!
The cap matches the bag, although I opted not to put the poetry tags on it. Figured they’d be too noisy, so close to my ears. The bag makes a lovely jingly noise though! The flowers and butterflies on both bag and cap were transferred with graphite paper, colored with crayons, and lightly embellished with simple embroidery stitches. Placed first in the class with the cap; the bag didn’t win anything.
- Quilting Division, with a quilt I made for my ex-boyfriend (yes, he gets it back!)
The quilt was made several years ago, and I do have a photo of the unfinished quilt, but I never got around to the finished quilt picture. I made it as a class sample, for my very first teaching experience with the Community Schools program in Fairbanks. It grew and grew, and depicts the strong interest my boyfriend at the time and I both have in the outdoors. There’s a picture of him and his son (on my first moose hunting trip with them) at the top, and a very tiny photograph of me near the bottom. Lots and lots of fabrics, beads, and buttons that carry out the outdoor theme embellish the quilt. No fair ribbon for this one; I still don’t have a picture of this yet.
The bag was made as a class sample, for a crazy quilting class I taught at A Weaver’s Yarn. It’s tiny, about 4” x 6”, I think, with a zipper at the top. I sometimes use it to hold a selection of embroidery threads to take along to meetings or other sit-still opportunities. The bag placed first in its class, and I was also awarded the Bob Hage Award, given for the most unusual combination of stitching and materials.
I will get pictures after the fair is over! Done-almost!
My next project is another hat, for the Fair. Every year the Fair staff provides the base for a theme-related project. Last year’s theme was “Feast or Salmon”, and they provided a salmon to decorate. I’ll have to take a picture of my theme entry, a styrofoam box, covered in fabric, embroidery, beads, buttons, and poetry tags. The inside has… well, I’ll get that photo and put that in a seperate blog entry!
So, this year’s theme is “Diamonds are Fair-Ever” and you’re supposed to “Redesign Fair Royalty”. In other words, take the baseball cap given to you and turn it into a crown. Mine is going to follow the theme via a “queen bee”. I’ll post the entire story and photos as soon as I get the hat finished! Fair colors are red, purple, and silver, and I am planning on making one awesome bee hat! Return soon to see the finished product… Here it is! I almost won, according to the woman I spoke with, when I picked up the hat. Darn! well, there’s always next year!