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Judy Mullen: Quilter par excellence
This wearable art by Manteca quilter Judy Mullen titled “Grace Comes in Splender,” won the Crème de la Crème Award at the International Quilt Festival in Houston. - photo by Photo courtesy of Judy Mullen
At the International Quilt Festival held in Houston, Texas, in October, Manteca quilter Judy Mullen’s “Just Purrefect” won third place.

That was just the latest in a long list of national and international accolades she has received through the years as a master in “wearable art” quilting.

But the most prestigious competitions of them all, as far as the lifelong quilter and former president of the Manteca Quilters Guild is concerned, were the 2006 and 2007 Bernina Fashion Show. For one thing, the competitions were not open to just anybody. Participation was by invitation only. And invitation came only after a quilter submitted a portfolio of her work for consideration.

At each of the two competitions, only 40 international designers were chosen to be in the show which premiered both years at the International Quilt Festival in Houston.

At the 2006 show called “Magnifique,” her design titled “Grace Comes in Silken Splender” won the coveted Crème de la Crème Award – the best of the best. It was the judge’s only award, and the first ever for a first-time designer.

“I was so surprised and excited,” was Mullen’s reaction to the prestigious award.

At the 2007 invitation-only show titled “Diamond Odyssey,” her entry was inspired by a painting by her daughter, Cyndi Esenwein. She named it “Passing Through the Painted Desert.”

Both entries in the Bernina Fashion Show traveled for two years and were exhibited in many venues as far away as Australia.

Area residents, though, will not have to travel that far to view samples of Mullen’s wearable art creations. They will be on display at this weekend’s 31st annual Manteca Quilt and Doll Show to be held at the MRPS Hall located at Grant Street between Center Street and Yosemite Avenue in downtown Manteca.

The show will be open Saturday, March 6, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., an on Sunday, March 7, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Quilt and doll show to feature Quilt appraisal by a professional
There will be more than just the usual display of many one-of-a-kind quilt creations for show and sale at this year’s event. For the first time, the guild will be offering quilt appraisals for those who are curious to know what their antique or vintage or collectible quilts are worth if only for insurance purposes.

Judy Quiner, who is helping her husband, Bob, chair this quilt show for the second year in a row, said a professional quilt appraiser will be available to all visitors.

Judy Quiner said the professional appraiser “has the training as well as the certification from the American Quilters Society. If you just want advice or information, it will be $20. If you want a written appraisal for insurance purposes, it will be $40.”

As in previous years, the show will also have a boutique section where visitors will be able to purchase original works by members of the Manteca Quilters Guild. A lot of booths will also have for sale quilting and quilting-related items such as textiles, books and whatnots. There will be food on the premises as well.

For further details or information about the quilt and doll show and how to submit entries, call Bob or Judy Quiner at (209) 825-4832.

MRPS Hall is located at 133 North Grant Street in downtown Manteca.

General Admission is $7 each; $10 for the two-day show; free to children 12 years and under.