Catching Up with Emilie Trahan, QuiltCon 2021 Best in Show Winner

Blooming by Emilie Trahan

We caught up with Emilie Trahan, the QuiltCon 2021 Best in Show winner with her quilt, Blooming.

MQG: Can you tell us about the inspiration for your Best in Show quilt?

Emilie: I was inspired initially by curves. By the time the improvisation piecing progressed, it organically grew as a flower and I went the full botanical route. I was pregnant with my first child while designing and piecing the quilt top and it clearly impacted my process. I wanted the composition to feel like a burst of life.

MQG: Why did you select this color palette?

Emilie: Blue and pink are one of my favorite color combinations, and my goal was to explore these colors in a range of values to create depth in the quilt.

MQG: Can you share more about the quilting on this piece?

Emilie: The quilting was done on a domestic machine with free-motion quilting. It proved to be a laborious and long process. Some of the quilting was achieved with a newborn baby on me in a baby carrier.

MQG: What was the most challenging part of making the quilt?

Emilie: The quilting was maybe the most challenging. I was still very inexperienced with quilting, and for some reason I went with a very detailed design. I had also just become a new mom and discovering that free time was now a foreign concept.

MQG: Thinking back, tell us about your initial reaction to finding out that your quilt won Best in Show at QuiltCon.

Emilie: Shock. Complete shock. Still in shock to this day. I was still in the beginning of my quilting journey and was submitting a quilt for the first time to QuiltCon. I remembered when I received an email telling me I had won a prize I was scared to reply, because I was sure it was some sort of phishing scam! So to learn I had won Best in Show was an unreal moment for me.

MQG: Did winning this award change your quilting path at all?

Emilie: It gave me confidence in my own creative voice. Even though I still have to learn a lot from a technical point of view, I can embrace my creativity further.

MQG: Where in the world is your Best in Show quilt today?

Emilie: In my sewing room in Joliette, Québec, Canada.