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Upcoming Sewing Contests: Challenge Yourself to Sew!

"Stuck at Prom" first place winners, 2014.

Let’s face it: If you sew a lot, it’s easy to get into design and construction ruts. Good habits and tried-and-true routines are admirable, of course, but sometimes it’s fruitful to shake things up a little. Participating in a sewing challenge is a great way to encourage yourself to try new things, or to perfect techniques you’ve always wanted to do better. Sewing contests are often social, too, and give you the opportunity to join a community of like-minded folks.

Awards range from the sheer glory of receiving the most votes from your esteemed sewing peers, to swag like sewing machines, notions, tools, and substantial scholarships and cash prizes. While prizes like these are not to be sneezed at, many contestants will tell you that planning and completing a garment for a challenge is a reward in itself.

Here’s a selection of some upcoming sewing contests. Follow the links for more details about rules, deadlines, and prizes.

Threads magazine
SewStylish Spring Fashion Challenge
Deadline: May 29, 2015
(Visit ThreadsMagazine.com often to find listings for upcoming challenges, including a fall fashion contest and a Halloween costume challenge.)

American Sewing Expo, Sept. 26-28, 2015, Novi, MI
The American Sewing Expo sponsors several challenges, for all ages and levels of experience:

  • Passion for Fashion Sewing Challenge
  • Chic Batik: The Challenge
  • Innovation Generation (ages 8-18)
  • Fashion Design in Half Scale: “50 shades of Red”
  • Cosplay
  • Push the Envelope: Tassels, Textures and Trims

American Sewing Guild
Anyone Can Win! contest
Deadline: July 15, 2015

Association of Sewing and Design Professionals
Annual themed members-only challenges.

Various sewing-related contests.

Duck Brand Duct Tape Stuck at Prom Scholarship contest
Prom finery–made from duct tape!

Fiberart International 2016
Juried fiber-arts contest

The Historical Sew Monthly 2015

Monthly themed challenges: create a garment or accessory from any time period before 1945.

International Quilt Festival
Many themed quilt contests.

Make it with Wool
Focuses on garments made entirely of wool textiles. Contests for all ages, from district through national levels.

Many themed contests throughout the year. Check website for details.

Quilt Expo
Quilt contest
Deadline June 30, 2015.

Many themed fabric-design contests.

Studio Art Quilt Associates
Many contest and exhibition opportunities listed.

Have you ever participated in a sewing challenge? What did you enjoy most about the experience? If you haven’t yet, would you consider doing so in the future?

Please let us know of any contests and challenges we should add to our list!


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  1. tanlithrash | | #1
  2. Ashtonjames | | #2

    these Contests are very good for beginners.

  3. User avater
    MarisolHackett | | #3


  4. User avater
    devinkoblas | | #4


  5. User avater
    DorisNorris | | #5

    its awesome!!

  6. User avater
    KeithSmith | | #6

    so cute

  7. User avater
    RonaldTague | | #7

    sweet couple

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