Press release

The “Oscar” of the Quilt world given out in Houston

Fifty of the world’s most beautiful quilts were shown at the International Quilt Market and International Quilt Festival in Houston, Texas, USA, October 30 – November 7, 2004. The exhibition was the result of the annual international quilt contest, sponsored by the Swedish Sewing Machine manufacturer Husqvarna Viking, Huskvarna, Sweden.

This year’s theme Color, Couleur,Colore, Kulör, contributed to the brilliant color and the outstanding artistry of the collection, which was truly the most beautiful since the inception of this juried exhibit five years ago. The contest had two categories, traditional quilts won by American artist, Therese Bliss, from Glendale, Arizona, USA, and art quilts won by the French/Danish artists Inge Mardal and Steen Hougs, from Chantilly, France.

The contest is one of the world’s most prestigious international quilt competitions and truly the first-ever gallery to feature quilt art created solely with sewing machine techniques. In total, quilt art from Japan, France, United Kingdom, Israel and other global destinations was displayed for more than 50,000 international quilting enthusiasts to admire.

“Quilting is rapidly developing as an art form and grows, in many cases, from traditional techniques into more free shapes. As the quilting also, more and more, is done by machine new possibilities open up for new techniques to be developed and for the quilters really to develop their own, in many cases, very advanced styles,” says Lill Nylén, sewing expert and PR Officer for Husqvarna Viking.

The winners received a coveted trophy, approximately 50 cm high Crystal sculpture, exclusively designed by Swedish glass artist Bertil Vallien. The piece has become the “Oscar” of the quilting world, featuring different “quilt techniques” inlaid in the glass. Furthermore the winners received a top-of-the-line sewing machine, the Husqvarna Viking Designer I (retail value USD $ 7,499) , an all expense paid trip, courtesy of Husqvarna Viking, to the International Quilt Festival in Houston, and USD $ 2,500 cash.

At a well-attended award ceremony in Houston, the winners received their awards from Nylen and Bengt Gerborg, President of the Husqvarna Viking Sales Company in the USA.
The 50 quilts now start a “World Tour” and will be shown at art galleries, museums and quilt fairs around the world in places like Australia and Japan. To see the quilts, visit


VSM Group AB
561 84 Huskvarna, Sweden
Tel: +46 36 14 60 00 (switchboard)

Svante Runnquist, CEO
Tel: +46 36 14 66 82

Gunnar Vidén, CFO
Tel: +46 36-14 72 47