2012 Houston International Quilt Festival

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Oh, YEAH!  A three night stay at the Hilton connected to the George R. Brown Convention Center is JUST RIGHT for enjoying the largest quilt festival of all!  My sister, Nannette, and I had plenty of oohing and ahhing to do as we perused the twenty aisles (we’re talking over nine football fields of shopping and quilts!)  We ate at the Hilton and the Geo. R. Brown, which meant our cars never left the garage.  First night is Preview from 7:00 to 10:00 and then the next two days we spent all day (10:00 -7:00) at the show.  This is a seamstress and quilter’s dream come true.  We watched demos of new products and Nannette bought the battery operated ripper (which I now regret not buying every time I rip.)  One of our favorite demos was the foot and body massagers.  While your feet are on the foot massager, the salesperson uses the shoulder and back massager on you!  Ahh, heaven indeed!  By late afternoon each day, we were definitely ready for a mini-massage to get us through until after show and dinner time back at the hotel.  A little massage and a latte from the snack bar and we’re good to go again! 🙂

Nannette’s son’s fiance’s grandmother (did you follow that?) had a quilt and a wall hanging in the show!  Very exciting and we took a pic of her  with her lovely and entertaining quilt which you’ll see below.  The quilts seem to be more and more amazing each year and there are a number of charitable organizations affiliated with the showings.  From modern style (you could swear that some of the art quilts are photographs) to old style (the French Guild quilts were all antique repros and were pieced and quilted by hand), the assortment of techniques and designs was phenomenal and prize money this year totaled $94,250!

Speaking of antique quilts, let’s talk shopping!  I bought my very first antique quilt (top only) which is a daisy chain done in the 1930’s.  See pic below.  It is hand pieced and one could spend hours just studying the variety and placement of fabrics used.  Another first for me, I saw a demo, tried it myself, and purchased a lace painting kit.  I plan to artistically decorate small romantic antique looking bags with these new paints and lace trims.  Another purchase included several handles for my bags including some that are new to me so it will be fun experimenting.  And so as not to completely exit from the garment game, I purchased fabric and pattern for a winter vest that has an embossed paisley design on soft green fur.  I also found laminated fabric designs which work perfectly for the Anny Bag.  Of course there was a gathering of trims–ribbons, buttons, charms, feathers, lace, appliques, fringe, etc.

Nannette and I both made our first purchase the new Kaffe Fassett autobiography, Dreaming in Color.  We already own every book our guru has ever written.  When you open one of his books, you can spend hours leisurely pouring over the exquisite array of quilts he offers.  But the very best event to happen to Nannette and I occurred just before we started our Wednesday night Preview.  We exited the Hilton and were waiting at the traffic light when we turned around and noticed Kaffe, himself, behind us!!  We must have seemed like groupies as we tried to talk (stammering) to this international quilt celebrity, who, I might add, is very easy on the eyes–actually his are piercing blue.  Since we went directly to the display where he autographed our books,  we decided to concentrate on keeping our distance the rest of the night lest he deem us stalkers!  🙂

With dreams of next year’s festival, I bid you a fond farewell.

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