My name is Charlotte, sometimes known as Ms Lottie, occasionally as The Slightly Mad Quilt Lady. This is my blog, where you'll find me writing a lot about my quilting and textile arts and a little about my family's life in a small seaside town in New Zealand. Haere mai!

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Interview with Melanie Martin, Best of Show winner, Manawatu Quilt Symposium 2015

Melanie Martin won Best of Show at the Manawatu Quilt Symposium 2015.  She was absolutely gobsmacked and after the awards ceremony I came across her sitting there stunned with her friends happily congratulating her.  I took the opportunity to ask Melanie for an interview, and while she was too overwhelmed to answer, her friends kindly agreed on her behalf!

Is is Art? Best of Show, Manawatu Quilt Symposium 2015, by Melanie Martin
Melanie discusses what this quilt is about and what it means to her.  We chat about her journey into quilting, her 'year of challenges' and where to from here.

We talk about another of her quilts, and you can see the Aotearoa Quilters Growth Challenge gallery here.  Melanie's quilt is called 'Under Construction'.

I can't find the exact Michael James quote that I talked about, but here's another good one from him that fits in really well with what Melanie and I talked about:  

Quiltmaking has historically been an art of conformity. I think it’s high time that we relegate that fact to quilt history, and move this art form fully into the 21st century where it should take its place alongside other exploratory and creative media.”

Thanks to Melanie for her time.


  1. Wonderful interview, Charlotte. Melanie is a well deserved winner of Best in Show. I had the pleasure of being in the wings of the stage when the awards were being announced and Melanie was so excited and at the same time unbelieving she had actually won! After coming off stage we sat her down for a couple of minutes to take some deep breaths. One thought she expressed was that she was sorry her husband was not there to share the experience with her. She is a lovely lady and talented quilter. Thanks for doing the interview.

  2. When I first saw the quilt I thought What! Is she doing showing a wall with graffiti on it? Then I listened to the interview and marveled at this grand quilt. What a great idea and way to make a statement. Love, love! Thank you for the interview , enjoyed it

  3. Great interview Charlotte, feel should I warn Kim Hill to watch her back!
    I have put a link to your interview on my blog, hope that's OK with you

  4. awesome interview and awesome quilt. well deserved winner

  5. Great interview! Very interesting to listen to Melanie and her journey.

  6. Thank you for doing this, I have just put the link on my Facebook page and sent it to my Coastal Quilters list as well. Lovely to get more insight on how this quilt evolved. And also to see that quilting is alive and well in NZ judging by all the new names at Symposium. Marge Hurst

    1. Thanks Marge, I'm glad to see the interview get spread around as I think I enjoyed the quilt even more once I heard it's story. And quilting is alive and well for sure!


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