While last Fall Market seemed to be all about the exceptional, Spring Market felt all about the people. As always it was an amazing concentration of talent in one place and one thing I can always count on is that quilters are nothing, if not fun!
It’s always hard to narrow highlights down to just a few. I met a lot of new and exceptionally able designers, quilters, and sewers and as always, had more than my fair share of fun catching up with friends I’ve known for years. Here is a tiny sampling of some of the moments that come to mind when I think back.
1. The relationship between the placement of Joanna Figueroa’s booth and the Hallelujah Chorus.
If you’ve never been there, the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh is the only convention center in the world with LEED® certifications: Gold in new construction and Platinum in the existing building. In short, it’s green, and part of what makes it green is the use of natural light. The first few days were pretty cloudy and each time the clouds broke, a beam of sunlight lit up Joanna’s booth. Apparently I was not the only one to muse that she should hit play on the hallelujah chorus each time the clouds parted.
2. Reveling in the Unplanned.
With fewer evening events, Spring Market offered more opportunities for impromptu gatherings. So many people stay in the hotels surrounding the convention center that it’s almost impossible not to stumble across friends on the way back from dinner. While I had a blast with everyone I ran into, I only managed to remember to take photos near the end of one evening. In the photo above you’ll see me on the left and my local quilt shop owner Heather Givans of Crimson Tate just to my right. Next to Heather is Lisa Sipes, quilting instructor and the blogger behind That Crazy Quilty Girl, and on the right is Patty Young of Modkid and the author of our just-releasedModkid Summer Fun. Many thanks to our long-suffering photographer, David of Crimson Tate!
3. In person at last!
Though Kathy Doughty and I have collaborated on two books, we’d never had the chance to meet in person. Kathy owns Material Obsession, a quilt shop in Sydney, so needless to say she doesn’t make it stateside too often. Thank goodness for Skype! Thanks to some truly inspiring project selection meetings over video conference we were able to spot each other in a crowd the very first night! It was truly a treat to meet her and her husband and book photographer, John in person and hear about all of their US travels and teaching.
You can find out more about Kathy’s books here:
Making Quilts with Kathy Doughty of Material Obsession
Adding Layers—Color, Design & Imagination
4. Overcoming drowsiness with enthusiasm.
None of my friends will be surprised when I share that I’m not really that much of a morning person. That being the case, I had more that a little bit of dread about sitting on a panel at 8am on Saturday morning! I shouldn’t have worried. With me on the panel were Annabel Wrigley of Little Pincushion Studio, Jake Finch of Gen Q Magazine, and Kristin Link of Sew Mama Sew. Prompted by moderator Megan Scott, we shared information on how shops can engage the next generation of customers; tweens and teens. Between the amazing insight of my fellow panelists and the enthusiasm of the attendees I was truly sorry to see it end.
You can find Annabel’s books here:
We Love to Sew
We Love to Sew — Bedrooms
Check out Jake’s brand new book, Stitch ‘n Swap