Archive for the ‘Quilt Shows’ Category

Spring Quilt Market 2017 – Part 2

Wednesday, May 24th, 2017

Here’s the second installment of my trip to Spring Quilt Market in St. Louis. The actual Market is three days. Shop owners get to peruse the booths of fabric companies, notions vendors, pattern designers and a few vendors who sell other items that may interest them. Since I was pretty much by myself in my booth I had a short leash and couldn’t roam around while the show floor was open.

I did see a lot of butterflies in several booths. You’ll be seeing those in your local shops soon no doubt!

The larger companies really go all out with decorations for their booths. Aren’t those cute spool stools?

I loved this chair! In the close up of the seat you can see it’s rolled up wool.

This was my neighbor Amy Walsh of Blue Underground Studios (best neighbor EVER!) and Jackie Kunkel of Canton Village Quiltworks booth. I ran into Jackie every 20 minutes just about every day!

Had a little fun in the Swirly Girls booth with some of Susan Emory’s new fabric line, Hello! Can’t wait to get my hands on some of that!

Market also has a small display of spectacular quilts. This was one of my favorites, Old Denim Square by Noriko Nozawa of Chiba City Japan. I’m sure it weighed a ton!

Another favorite quilt was After The Storm by Ruth Powers. I loved the touch of metallic thread for the lightning!

I sampled some great food too. Tried the Gooey Butter Cake which is a St. Louis specialty. Super sugary, perfect for that afternoon pick-me-up!









I did get to do some roaming around the city a little in the evenings. I saw some great architecture. Some of the details would make neat quilting ideas.

I saw cool plants and more quilting ideas.

I had great dinner companions, saw the arch at night and more quilting ideas (do you see the boo-boo in the floor tile?)

And yes, even got to see the arch during the day. It was under construction and this is as close as we could get… Also saw horses!

I saw these all around the city…not sure what they recycle cigarette butts into…

Loved this photo in my hotel. The close-up shows it’s a book!

My flight home got delayed so I had a chance to roam around the airport. Found a bathroom for service dogs!









And a final look at the arch before heading home…









Oh yeah…I sold some stuff too…

Spring Quilt Market 2017 – Part 1

Tuesday, May 23rd, 2017

I just got back from Spring Quilt Market and thought I would share some of what I saw with you guys. I have lots of photos so I’ll do it in two blog posts. For those that don’t know…Market is held twice a year, Houston in the fall and changing cities in the spring. This year was St. Louis and next spring is in Portland OR. This is a trade show for quilting businesses. Quilt shops come to see what is the newest and latest items from fabric companies, notion peddlers and pattern designers. It’s sort of like a large (VERY large!) quilt show but on steroids. This show was held in a convention center that was four blocks long. My hotel was at one end and my booth at the other…I got lots and lots of walking done! There were 32 aisles of vendors. I was in aisle 29 right next to the networking lounge. Here’s what my booth looked like when I arrived and the finished product.


My booth was a little skimpy compared to most of the others because everything I needed had to fit into the two suitcases that I flew with and they couldn’t weigh more than 50 lbs. It was an engineering feat.  I had to bring carpet, drapes, quilts, patterns, lots of flyers, table cover, chair cover, decorations, etc. I also had to squeeze some clothes in there somewhere…and deodorant, everyone was glad I could fit the deodorant! It was also a little skimpy because I’m not a large corporation with deep pockets…


The first day is set-up of the booth areas. There are dozens of fork-lifts whizzing around, huge crates in the aisles, litter and debris from unpacking everywhere…it’s controlled chaos. Very exciting. This poor lift driver had to maneuver through our aisle. Once all the fork-lift work is complete then they lay the red carpet in the aisles. It’s amazing how everything gets done.

Day two is Schoolhouse all day and Sample Spree at night. Schoolhouse is 15-30 minute classes all day. You get the program in the morning and have to choose your classes. Each time slot has about a dozen classes to choose from. Here are all the shop owners looking over their schedules waiting for the first classes to start. Some of the classes are companies or designers showing off their newest items, others are how-to classes for all the business things we need to know.

I helped out a few friends during their schoolhouse sessions. Here’s Tammy Silvers of Tamarini’s showing off quilts made with her new line Batiks Go Retro from Island Batik. Also a shot of her booth on the Market floor. The purple and orange bag on the floor is one I made in her fabrics!

Here’s Ebony Love showing off her new block of the month program made with her new line Sakura, also by Island Batik. Also a shot of her booth on the Market floor.


Here’s my friend Penni Domikis of Cabin In The Woods Quilters showing off her new EPP templates along with her Vanna White Kelly Ann Richardson of Kelly Ann’s Quilting. I’m very excited that Penni will be a special guest celebrity in my booth during Maine Quilts in July! You’ll get to see her in action and check out her really cool new EPP templates.

Sample Spree is two hours of madness. Think day-after-Thanksgiving shopping for quilters but you only get two hours. Some of the tables are piled high with thread, fabric, pattern kits…all kinds of stuff. The shop owners swarm in and start grabbing.

   Tomorrow I’ll share some photos of the Market floor and some sights around the city.

Fabric Extravaganza

Tuesday, January 31st, 2017

As this show quickly approaches I thought I would take a few minutes to tell you a little about it. If you’ve never been before then it’s high time you came. It’s unlike any other quilt show. There are no fancy displays of quilts, you’re more likely to find post-it note signs instead of nice ones, workers are dressed in their finest denim while standing for hours cutting fabric and ringing sales.

Nothing is full price, everything is discounted. Oh, I hear ya…it must be all junk stuff, right? WRONG! Every shop (brick/mortar & online) ends up with a collection of fabrics where too many of the “stars” have sold out and the “bit players” are languishing on the shelf. Or those last couple of yards on a bolt always seem to take forever to disappear (kind of like the last cinnamon roll, no one wants to take it!) or perhaps a notions packaging is looking a little tired from being hauled around. I will also admit to bringing items simply because I’m tired of looking at them! And we can’t forget that sure-to-be-a-hit that we bought way too much of or the supplies for that class that got cancelled because of a big snow storm. And most sad of all…the last few years (this year included) we have had vendors who had recently closed their shop and are looking to get rid of the last of their inventory. Whatever the reason, there are bargains to be had.

The show is held at the Holiday Inn, 9 Northeastern Blvd. in Nashua NH, exit 4 off route 3

February 16-18, 2017 – Thursday & Friday 10-6, Saturday 10-3

As of this moment the vendors will be: Vintage & Vogue, Purple Moose Designs, Fabritique, A Notion To Quilt, Bittersweet Fabrics, Dragonfly, Bits & Pieces and Heart In Hand

Over the years (this is my 4th or 5th year, I’ve lost count) I have discovered the secret strategies of the power shoppers…

*Come early on Thursday for best selection,

*Come on Saturday just after lunch for best prices. We don’t want to haul it back home…

*Bring a friend or three and enjoy a great lunch at the on-site cafe.

*Please bring a shopping bag or tote. You can bring several and put the filled ones in the car before lunch!

*Wear comfy shoes, skip the perfume (lots of people, close quarters) but put on deodorant (lots of people, close quarters!)

*Elbow and knee pads are not generally needed, quilters are typically polite. If you wear the pads, we’ll know you mean business.

*Work out a plan with your friends to tag-team the line. One person stands in line for cutting/paying while the other flits around looking for more bargains, then switch places.

*Come with a list of backings needed, charity quilts requirements, guild raffle quilt requirements, 2017 Christmas present list (it will come, be prepared!)


Hope to see ya there!

Ladies Of The Lake 2016

Saturday, August 13th, 2016

Last weekend I was vending at the Ladies Of The Lake show in Wolfeboro NH. This was a whole 7 miles from home. Quite a treat considering how far and wide I usually travel! It was also a very tiny booth…what was I thinking? Remind me never to do that again. It was like putting 10 gallons of stuff in a 5 gallon bucket!


Sunflower by Winifred O’Shaughnessy. A very bright and happy quilt!IMG_2870

Hunter’s Star by Marilyn Ray, quilted by Kim Pilote. This pattern is on my to-do list. Love the colors and LOVE the outer border!IMG_2872

Hidden Butterflies by Debbie Sheldon quilted by Linda Bevins. Beautiful workmanship by both ladies!IMG_2874

Night Sky by Maria Wentworth quilted by The Attic Cat. I love this color palette.


Lapis and Jade by Barbara Nelson quilted by Footprints Quilt Shop. Two of my favorite gems together in one quilt!IMG_2880

Spring Flower Heart by Dawn Thurston quilted by Dick Castrucci. Dawn is a fellow guild member for me…she makes stuff like this all the time…we still love her… All kidding aside, she does fab-fab work.IMG_2883

One of the highlights of the show was when they announced the winner for Viewer’s Choice. The quilt happened to be hanging right in front of my booth so I had a front row seat. Intro To Retirement by Sandy Onsanger quilted by Michelle Plourde. Sandy was our vendor liason and a very pleasant person. She was so surprised that she won. By a stroke of luck the quilter Michelle happened to be right there at the same time shopping. They make a great team. And yes they are normal sized people…that is one very gi-normous quilt. I think it was king plus!IMG_2886

Maine Quilts 2016

Friday, August 12th, 2016

I thought I would share a little of what we saw at Maine Quilts this year. This is one of my two favorite shows (the other is MQX) and I hope to do it for many more years. I’m still waiting for the moose theme year though…


This was our booth. We started something new this year, a selfie spot! We were visited by the Tacky Tiara group. What a hoot they were.

FullSizeRender IMG_2829

Circle of Stars by Linda Garvin quilted by Patti Trygg. I loved the color combo.

Cabin Nines by Audrey Briggs quilted by Carolyn Bernier. Oh the tiny little pieces! Below is Homage To The Amish by Sue Mason quilted by Patti Trygg. Just a plain old-fashioned block in modern colors with one fancy square in the center. Awesome!IMG_2833 IMG_2835

Influence by Pat LaPierre. What an interesting take on a modern quilt.


One Fish, Two Fish…Tweaked by Denise Sullivan. What a fun colorful quilt.

Day At The Lake by jean Savalchak quilted by Ramune Dailide. Fish of a different variety. Below is Coastal Sunset by Carol MacDougall. I think this was my favorite at the show. Stunning.

IMG_2841 IMG_2843

Treadle by Kate Albert. A little something for my people power friends!


A Bear Essential Bra – a Female Necessity! by Kate Albert. Who says quilting is boring?

A Quilter’s Dream Come True…

Sunday, January 31st, 2016

Last month in my newsletter I mentioned the upcoming Fabric Extravaganza event. I received several inquiries…apparently I didn’t explain it well enough so here goes…


For those of you who have been in New England for awhile – remember Filene’s Basement in Boston? It’s kinda like that except it’s for quilters.



and so it begins...

and so it begins…

For everyone else – imagine 8 quilting vendors in a ballroom at the Holiday Inn in Nashua NH. There are no fancy displays, no stylized pretty quilts being showcased, we get to wear jeans (ok, so I’m probably more excited about that one…), nothing is full price and everything is ready to go home with you.  It costs NOTHING to get in so you are free to come check it out and leave anytime you want. You can even come every day if you want to and not buy a thing…go ahead, I dare ya!


Now, let’s answer some of the specific questions I received…

**Why do we do this? Well, it’s winter…there are few quilt shows to vend at and we like to eat and heat our homes. It also gives us an opportunity to clear out items to make way for all the new stuff coming in the spring. We also like to make sure the cardboard recycler keeps his/her job.

dead bolts...

dead bolts…

**Is everything “broken”? Absolutely not! The fabrics are everything that we currently carry. For me that means all the good quality batiks and landscape fabrics will be there. There will be a few notion items that have a scratch-and-dent issue from being carted around but nothing that makes it “broken”. I have a few items that I have too many of and will be offering those at a discount. Or it may be an item that I will no longer be carrying, for whatever reason, and need it to move along.

**Is it just fabric? Not at all. I will have notions, thread, patterns, retired samples and whatever else turns up while I’m packing up. So do the other vendors.

**Is everything gone the first day? Not even close. Yes, there is more selection at the beginning but there is still lots to choose from at the end too. We often can’t fit everything in at the beginning and will add things as space frees up. Some vendors will also give a deeper discount towards the end so we don’t have to haul it back home.

the crowd

**Is it crowded? At times, yes, but not always. Besides…while you’re waiting in line to get your fabric cut there will be plenty of quilters to meet, get help from on choosing fabric or how much to buy, trade quilting secrets… Everyone is very friendly. I have never seen a fist fight break out over a bolt…yet…


Well, I think that about covers it… Grab your shopping totes, make a list of all those quilt backs you need and bring a friend. The hotel has a cafe where you can get a yummy lunch too! You can make a day of it. Hope to see ya there.

Fabric Extravaganza

Holiday Inn, 9 Northeastern Blvd. Nashua NH – right off Hwy 3, exit 4. Easy off, easy on.

Hours 2/11-12/16 10am to 6pm, 2/13/16 10-3

Purple Moose Designs, Vintage & Vogue, Fabritique, Maplewood Quilts, The Christmas Shoppe, Bits n Pieces, The Quilted Acorn and Nashua Sew & Vac.




Sunrise At The Cabin

Wednesday, July 24th, 2013

The baby news out of England is all over the airwaves…we have baby news too! No, not the human kind…I have just given birth to my latest pattern! Sunrise At The Cabin is a paper pieced center medallion surrounded by traditionally pieced log cabin blocks. The pattern offers sizes from lap to king.


The process to create a quilting pattern is not unlike the human pregnancy experience. When you first get the idea you are very excited and can’t wait to tell everyone. Then the morning sickness and weight gain begin as you realize all the editing and sample making that are in your future. Towards the end of the gestation period you only scream that you just want it to be all over…and RIGHT NOW!  Unlike humans, the gestation period for patterns varies greatly. This particular pattern is in the elephant category. I have been fighting with…err…working with this one for YEARS. It has been a sometimes painful process. I’m not sure why it was so difficult but for some reason my brain had “issues” with this pattern, the words just didn’t flow.

Some designers opt for the cesarean approach and have an editor write their pattern for them. I opted for the more traditional Natural Pattern Birth and stuck it out. Granted the pattern could have been finished long ago with a cesarean but I feel better now, having done it the old fashioned way, all by myself. Of course there were a few complications in the delivery room with the printer but it all worked out in the end.

sunrise center

I owe a HUGE thank you to my mid-wife, Beth Helfter of EvaPaige Quilt Designs for giving me a good swift kick in the rear (on several occasions I might add…) in spurring me to get this pattern finished.

I will be debuting the pattern at Maine Quilts this weekend. We will even have a special introductory price of only $8.00. If you’ll be at the show be sure and stop by to check out my new baby. I won’t have cigars but I will have purple chocolate kisses for ya!


Bennington Quiltfest

Friday, September 14th, 2012

I’m so excited. I (along with my New England Quilt Designers compatriats) will be vending at the Bennington Quiltfest in Bennington VT this weekend. I was lucky to spend a little time in Bennington while on vacation this summer and, I must say, Ben

Grape Moose

They even have moose prints on the sidewalk!

Moose Prints

The Quiltfest will be held at the Mt. Anthony Union Middle School, 747 East Road and will run 9-5 on Saturday and 9-4 on Sunday. I will be manning the booth along with Beth Helfter of EvaPaige Quilt Designs, the original Quilting Hottie. We have the extra special treat of having her hubby, Mr. Hottie, joining us. Beth says he’s there for added eye candy. If you’re in the area be sure and stop in to say Howdy!

Cocheco Quilters Guild

Wednesday, July 4th, 2012

I had the pleasure a couple of weeks ago to spend an evening with the folks from the Cocheco Quilters Guild in Dover NH. I shared a little sewing machine history with them and they shared their hospitality with me. Here are a few of the folks that I could fit into the picture.

Thanks for having me and I look forward to seeing you guys again at either Maine Quilts or The Gathering…or wherever quilters gather!

Quilter’s Getaway

Monday, April 23rd, 2012

I spent some time the last two weekends with the retreaters at Quilter’s Getaway Weekend held in Waterville Valley, NH. They hold retreats each spring and fall. Usually there are different attendees at each retreat, except for the organizers Carrie and Kathleen. At last weeks retreat Kathleen purchased my pattern Fish Frenzy. This week she had all the blocks done and hanging on the design wall. I just love her color choices – very evocative of sand and surf. Great job Kathleen, can’t wait to see it all completed.

The last few miles of the drive to the retreat follows along the Mad River. Normally at this time of year the river is raging with spring runoff. I stopped to take a picture. Where I was standing I should have been very wet and not able to see the rocks. It’s going to be a very dry summer…