Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Houston Here I Come!

Well, in little more than 24 hours, I will be on my way to International Quilt Market in Houston, TX. I will be promoting my book and trying to make as many connections as possible. Beyond that, I have no real idea what to expect. THAT IS DRIVING ME NUTS! I do not like staring into the unknown -- I never have. I guess that's why I've mostly stuck to the things that I know and understand even if I didn't like or enjoy them -- I stuck with them because I knew what to expect.

Now It's like I'm standing on this precipice -- do I jump and hope to sprout wings or do I turn around and head back down where I've been? I've made the decision to jump, but that doesn't mean it's not scary. I'm scared to death -- but I'm also extremely hyped about what could be....

Wish me L.....................U.....................C..................K..............

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Antique Study Group

Last night I spoke at the Antique Study Group. It was a lot of fun. I took the pre 1920 quilts from my book along to show as well as pre 1900 blocks from my collection. I hope they got as much out of the experience as I did.

I am pretty much a self taught identifier of dates/eras of fabrics. I have a lot of books and I've done a lot of reading. I had some practical hands-on experience working in museums and historical societies.

I was very pleased to see that I actually do know what I'm talking about when I date fabrics. The group members were in agreement with me about the dates of the pieces that I showed. In a few cases, though, they thought perhaps the items in question could even be earlier!

I am fortunate to have a piece of early chintz which to me looks like perhaps circa 1830. I showed off this prized possesion last night and the retired quilt appraiser and the current quilt appraiser spent some time looking at it closely. They thought it could actually be earlier than 1830! WOW! Pauline, the current appraiser said that it was a hard piece to date because she hasn't seen enough of it to determine a date for sure. How cool is that? I feel quite honored to have this particular piece of fabric in my collection.

Well, it seems that I am close to being ready for Houston and International Quilt Market. Or at least as ready as I can get. I have a basic plan for my Schoolhouse lecture and then I will do a shortened version of the lecture for the booth demos. I've got the two quilts from the book that I am taking and also I've made five sample quilt top variations of the finished quilts. Sigh......wish me luck.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Quilt Market Here I Come

Well, it's just past the middle of October and it's time to get ready for International Quilt Market at the end of this month! This will be my very first (and I hope not last) Quilt Market. I go this year to promote my new book, Orphan Block Quilts, which came out the end of August. I will be doing a Schoolhouse lecture on Friday, 29 October and 2 booth demos on Sunday, 31 October.

I've been brainstorming until my brain cells hurt, trying to figure out what to do for my Schoolhouse and my demos. I'm limited when it it comes to bringing stuff along since the flight from PA to TX is kind of long and I don't want my quilts out of my sight on the plane. I think I've finally got an idea. I took a quilt design from my book and I'm going to address common problems and thier soultins when it comes to working with orphan blocks. The problems/solutions will be addressed using the same basic format, too. Sigh....I hope it goes well.

This will only be the second time I've been on an airplane and I can tell you that I'm still kind of nervous about it. I know three hours isn't too long of a flight, but that's three hours that I'm not in control of my own destiny. It's hard to give theat control up, know what I mean? I'm very fortunate that one of my best friends decided to go with me to Houston. We're going to have so much fun and will be so exhausted, too!

I am hoping to make a lot of connections in the quilt world because I'd like to see how far I can go. I would like to do some design work for fabric manufacturers and then perhaps some day maybe fabric design. We'll see. Right now though I am just hoping to present my Schoolhouse without falling down or throwing up on my shoes.

Wish me luck!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Fabulous Fall

It's hard to believe that almost a month has passed since I last blogged! I do think about blogging, but when I finally have time to sit down and do it, it's old news. Do you know what I mean? This past month has been pretty busy as I've been working on promoting my book, Orphan Block Quilts. I've had book signings, a workshop, displays, and even a trunk show. It's lots of fun and I'm really enjoying meeting new people. At one of my most recent events, my fifth grade teacher came (she's just getting into quilting) -- she bought a book for herself and one for my sixth grade teacher too! It really makes me feel wonderful to know that some of my teachers still remember me (then I get to wondering why I was so memorable. Hmmm...). But, just the same, I think it's pretty cool. I'm proud to show them that I turned out okay and that I am doing something that I love!

Onto another topic...

Well, I don't know what fall looks like where you live, but here in NW PA, the leaves are turning into shades of red, orange, and gold. LOVELY.

Yesterday, my family decided to take a ride to enjoy some of the fine fall weather and the gorgeous fall colors. We decided to head for Kinzua Dam in Warren County, PA. It's about 1.25 hours away. The ride was great -- since I wasn't driving, I even brought a long a small quilt to work on.

Of course, when we went past a great quilt shop in Pittsfield along the way, it just so happened to be open, so we had to stop. After a little impromptu shopping, we continued on our way. The views at the Dam the Allegheny River) were so beautiful. I took lots of pictures. Please enjoy them!

The colors of fall make me either want to rake leaves and jump in them or else make a leaf quilt....