In My Life, I've Loved Them All

28 Quilts & Astronomical Block Challenge with Karen Nyberg

I saw the NASA booth at the 39th International Quilt Festival in Nov 2013, and this video of Astronaut Karen Nyberg asking for quilt squares to add to the one she made while on the International Space Station.

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So I figured 10 months to make an 9.5” quilt block would be a piece of cake! Of course, I left everything to the last minute and Priority Mailed my block in the week of the deadline.

astro quilt block

I thought all of the blocks would be made into one super record-breaking quilt! But when I arrived at the International Quilt Festival 2014, I found that the 2,200+ blocks were assembled into 28 72”x90” quilts. Makes sense, and made for a much more manageable way to display the work of Quilters from around the world.

It was a beautiful exhibit to walk through… but my heart began to sink when I realized there were 4 huge notebooks of quilt squares to flip though. Squares that were not the correct dimensions or were received after the deadline. Did I measure right!? Was my block mailed in time?!

Luckily, I found my block on the 26th quilt I looked at! It was on the bottom row of the quilt, so I sat on the floor to get a picture with it.

Found my #star #block! #AstroBlockChallenge #quiltfestival

A photo posted by Cindy (@inmylife99) on

HUGE BONUS: I found out in-route to the Festival that Astronaut Karen Nyberg was going to make an appearance! Had I known in advance, I would have worn a nicer shirt. Being able to meet here really completed this entire experience!


I made sure to take a picture off all 28 of the Star themed quilts… in thoughts to mash them together into a photo of one SUPER QUILT like I had originally thought it would be.

Now I am realizing that 1) Many of the 2,200 contributors could not make it to Houston to see the Display in person and 2) Professional photos of the quilts are not available online quite yet. I thought they be posted as soon as the festival started… but now it may be a week or 2 until gets the online. And that is an eternity to the Quilters who want to see their block!

So to help out, here are the pictures I took of the Astronomical Quilts. They are taken with a point-and-shoot camera, but hopefully are clear enough for quilters to find their blocks!


** click on photos to enlarge **

AstroQuilt1  AstroQuilt2

astroquilt3  astroquilt4

astroquilt5  AstroQuilt6

AstroQuilt7  astroquilt8

astroquilt9  AstroBlock10


AstroQuilt11  astroquilt12

astroquilt13  astroquilt14

astroquilt15  AstroQuilt16

AstroQuilt17  AstroQuilt18

astroquilt19  astroquilt20

astroquilt21  astroquilt22

astroquilt23  astroquilt24

astroquilt25  astroquilt26

astroquilt27  astroquilt28


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  1. Thank you for posting your photos of the Space Quilts at Houston. I saw the Karen Nyberg quilt block challenge on the net and being a big fan of space exploration and also a quilter I thought it would be fun to be a part of it. I live in the UK and trusted my block to the postal system hoping that it would make it to the US by the deadline and meet all the requirements. I have been keeping an eye on the web but had seen no sign of my block. Thanks to you, I am pleased to say I have now seen my block. It is also in the 26th quilt, immediately to the left of yours.

    Comment by Karen Roberts — 11/6/2014 @ 4:23 am

  2. I am so glad my post helped you find your block!
    And with over 2,200 blocks submitted, the fact that ours were sewn next to another is incredible!

    I was almost in tears when I looked at the 20th quilt and didn’t see my block yet… so I am hoping to relieve the minds of as many quilters as possible :)

    Comment by Cindy C — 11/6/2014 @ 5:40 am

  3. Thank you for posting all the quilts, they were awesome, would have loved to been there

    Comment by Sheri — 11/6/2014 @ 6:19 am

  4. Thank you Cindy for showing the star block quilts, they are amazing.
    I found mine… Quilt Number 23 left hand side one row up from the bottom… border black background with white patterned pinwheel star and a little star with my signature on it…..
    I live in England UK and am delighted to see all of the stars together.
    Congratulations to everyone who took part.
    Thanks again.

    Comment by Isabell Bourke — 11/6/2014 @ 11:09 am

  5. Thank you for sharing all the wonderful blocks sewn into quilt-awesome to see-each and every single one. Found my block in Quilt 8-second row third block :D Am from Berlin in Germanyand an avid quilter for ages,too.

    Comment by Marga Andresen-Gransow — 11/6/2014 @ 2:02 pm

  6. Thank you so much Cindy!! We’ve send two stars from Montevideo Uruguay with my best friend (she is the sewing fanatic and I am the space fanatic). The challenge was perfect for us. We’re very happy to see ours stars. Mil gracias y muchos saludos.

    Comment by Caro — 11/6/2014 @ 3:45 pm

  7. Enjoyed your sight. i to was amazed that so many people sent in a block. My block was one of the ones that trey had om a different page, they shared some of the stories that went with the blocks. I am so thrilled to be included with so many wonderful peoples blocks. wish I could have been there, but your pictures were wonderful Thank you

    Comment by Shirley King — 11/7/2014 @ 12:24 pm

  8. Thanks so much! I am going to publish a blog post and send people HERE to see your wonderful photos. You are a peach!

    Comment by Melanie McNeil — 11/7/2014 @ 10:52 pm

  9. Melanie posted about the quilts you took pictures of…and here I am!! Great story and fabulous quilts!! How totally cool that so many were able to have their blocks in those beautiful quilts. Thank you for taking pictures of all of them and sharing them here!

    Comment by Susan the farm quilter — 11/8/2014 @ 1:47 am

  10. This is really neat—I hadn’t heard anything about it so it’s a great to see your photos. I wish I could see the quilts in person!

    Comment by Kerry — 11/8/2014 @ 7:57 am

  11. Melanie in Iowa provided a link to this post. What a wonderful series of constellations! (Literally, “stars together.”) thank you for sharing the photos.

    Comment by Nann — 11/8/2014 @ 7:57 am

  12. Thanks for the photos. I found my block in the 4th quilt photo row 5, column 5. How exciting!

    Comment by Cathy L in IA — 11/8/2014 @ 5:57 pm

  13. Cindy, Bless you and thank you for thinking of your fellow quilters and posting these pics. I was not able to attend the Festival and have been disappointed (until I found your site) that nothing had been published online about these quilts. I found my star in panel 14 – 3rd from left. Beautiful pictures of beautiful quilts. So glad I participated. Maybe I will see them on tour someday.

    Comment by Beth — 11/18/2014 @ 11:26 pm

  14. Thanks, Cindy, for taking and posting these photos. I found my block on #5. Exciting!

    Comment by Diane — 12/17/2014 @ 1:15 pm

  15. Is there any way to look up the names of the quilters who participated in this challenge? Do they have a register that tells where each block is located? One of the quilters in my group cannot remember what fabrics she used for sure and we have looked through all these photos. The other two ladies did find their blocks. Hers was turned in on time and I believe the measurements were correct and she did not have any embellishments. We did not take photos when they were finished.

    Comment by Pamela Zajicek — 12/17/2014 @ 2:41 pm

  16. Thx for doing this I found my block, Talking Turkey on the second quilt pic. second row from the bottom, 4th. block from the right, yippee!

    Comment by Roslyn — 1/13/2015 @ 6:13 pm

  17. I think the best people to ask would be at where we submitted the quilts. I’d hope they would have documented everything for us! e-mail:

    Comment by Cindy — 2/13/2015 @ 12:15 am

  18. Pretty! This was an incredibly wonderful article.

    Thank you for providing these details.

    Comment by ask — 3/29/2015 @ 11:33 pm

  19. Thank you for posting these! I found my star on the same quilt as yours, quilt 26.

    Comment by Janet — 4/20/2015 @ 10:18 am

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