I have just returned from my very first International Quilt Market in Houston. I have wanted to go for a number of years and I finally made it there this year! I have so much to share so I think I will do it in “bite size” pieces so do watch for more snippets coming your way in the coming weeks.
For those who are not familiar with this show: International Quilt Market is a trade only show. The show that is open to the public is INTERNATIONAL QUILT FESTIVAL which opens after the trade only market has closed. The show closes & reopens to the public a day or 2 later. This show is certainly the largest Quilting show in North America: previous stats reveal that about 50-60,000 people attend. There are 3 parts to it: the exhibition of quilts ; the Merchant Mall; and the classes. I managed to attend a bunch of short classes & promotional presentations as well as seeing pretty much all the various quilt exhibitions. The show is held all in one venue: The George Brown Convention center in downtown Houston. I thought Houston was a sparkling, clean city with impressive high rise buildings and lots of green spaces too.
The Merchant Mall was the largest I have encountered to date: I think it had 24 super long aisles of a wide variety of merchants from fabric manufacturers to sewing machine brands to pattern and book publishers and much more. I am told that the floor area of the merchant mall is about the same size as 3 football fields!! It took me the best part of 2 full days to be sure I had seen & talked to all those who I wanted to gather information from.
I was invited to attend a reception of the Houston Modern Quilt Guild and at this meeting – which was more like a networking type cocktail party – I was approached by a representative from Windham Fabrics: Jennifer, who handed me a charm pack of the glimma fabric line by Lotta Jansdotter. She asked me to please mention her company on my blog. I agreed to do this….seemed a fair exchnage for a free charm pack! The fabric line would be one suitable for Modern quilts so I am not surprized this was the one chosen as the evening freebie.
There were incredible gift baskets given out as door prizes (huge stabilizer, fabric & thread bundles) but I am sad to say that my # was not drawn! Oh well, you can’t always win can you?
I also attended a class about Quilting Modern Quilts delivered by an energetic young lady called Angela Walters where, incidentally, I DID win a door prize of some fabrics. Here I learned more about the Modern Quilting movement which is rapidly gaining popularity – especially amongst younger quilters: lots of bold colours , solids, simple traditional quilting patterns given a new “modern” twist…….very encouraging to see quilters many years younger than the average age of quilters getting as excited about quilting but with their own spin & style.
I will share more with you in the next little while so stay tuned!!