Even the rainbow-striped borders synchronize with one another.
It would take her four years, taking time off to work on her other projects, to assemble the nearly queen-sized quilt and make it ready to be entered.
In the meantime, her hunt for perfection continued to be fueled by other designers she's met locally and at Road to California conventions.
She met Huntington Beach local Mary O'Driscoll through her local quilting group, the Orange Grove Quilting Guild, and Oregon-based designer Sandra Leichner through a class she took at one of the Road to California conventions. They have taught and inspired her, she said.
"They go for perfection. They look for outstanding ways to do things," Powel said. "They have invented techniques to make things look absolutely perfect."
Quilting has progressed to more than just something "grandma made because she needed to stay warm," said Road to California founder Carolyn Reese.
"A good many of them are art pieces, similar to what you might see in some museums," she said. "They run anywhere from a landscape of the Pecan Mountains to a portrait of somebody to the very traditional ones we think of."
Some quilters go above and beyond what is necessary to make a competition quilt. Reese said that during the 18 years of the show, she remembered one quilt that was valued at $20,000.
Though Powel didn't spend as much money, she has spent a considerable amount on her current entry.
Getting her quilt professionally quilted cost her $700 and the fabric and crystals together cost $400.
Though Powel has been a finalist in the first two competitions she's entered, she didn't start out as perfect as she wanted to — in her head, at least.
Hanging in the back of her sewing room in her basement is her very first quilt. The center piece is supposed to be a heart made up of smaller squares.
It's considerably smaller that the others she's made, and Powel uses it to remind her how far she's come since she started.
At the end of the day, it's all about the pleasure of making appliqués, constructing competition quilts and even making a few for her family.
Powel has made roughly 75 quilts during her 13 years as a quilter and seeing the smiles on her family's face is one of the things that keep her going.
She understands that she is not getting any of her money back from making these quilts, but it's the hunt of finding different fabrics, threads and designs that make her happy.
"Are you going to get your money back [spending $8,000 on a embroidery machine]? No. But am I going to get $8,000-worth of pleasure? You bet," she said.