Monday, 21 October 2013

Craft and Quilt Fair 2013

Had a great but busy weekend, which ended with a wander around the Craft & Quilt Fair - blissfully child free for the first time in a few years.  I love doing the mother/daughter thing, but Miss B gets bored so quickly and I feel like I can never have a good wander around the quilts.  Also, it was rather nice not to be asked to buy her things endlessly too! I got away with it lightly this year and just bought her a little pattern for a sock monkey bunny.  She seemed impressed, but I suspect this will join her collection of other patterns and kits that languish in the sewing room.

This quilt won best in show.

One of my guilty pleasures about attending quilt shows is eavesdropping on other people as they comment on the quilts.  The people who go to craft shows are a mix of novices and experts so it's always interesting to lurk about and hear what people of all quilting abilities think of the exhibits.  I overheard a few women exclaiming that they simply would never have the time or patience to make a quilt, others who were in awe of the workmanship and some who were completely daunted by how perfect the work on display was and that they would never be able to do that.  I always have to resist the urge to walk up to those women and tell them that anyone can make a quilt - it's just sewing pieces of fabric together in interesting ways but I never do. 

This year I noticed that there were very few hand quilted or domestic machine quilted quilts on display and I think that seeing nothing but professionally long-armed quilts sends a message to the general public that quilting is too hard for the average person, or that in order to be considered well quilted a quilt has to be professionally finished.  Not to offend the long-arm people, but I find it kind of boring to be honest, and somehow the quilts seem less handmade and lacking in diversity because of it.  People viewing them seemed to have less of a sense of wonder in the way appreciating the quilts as a piece of art and saw them more in terms of a thing to put on the bed/home decoration, which is the one place that ironically most of them won't be! 

The quilts that really spoke to me this year tended to be bright and leaning towards modern in style.

I really loved this one - it was the only quilt that I noticed that had been quilted on a domestic sewing machine.  'm surprised that I was so drawn to this as the bright colours and solid fabrics are very different to anything that I have ever made.  I think I like it so much because it's so simple, but such a great use of colour and the quilting pattern that the artist chose really suited it - it was an organic kind of brick pattern done freehand.  I really like freehand machine quilting and finish most of my own quilts like that so I guess it struck a chord with me.

Obviously the people who set up the display did not share my love for it though.  Look what was in front of it!

Surely they could have found a better spot for it.  It was annoying to have to squeeze behind that to get a good look at it and frankly, I found it disrespectful to the artist.  I would have been very upset had that been my quilt.

The colours in this are amazing!  I think I have the pattern for this somewhere, but have never got around to making it.  There's so much work in this, just in the piecing.  Realistically I would never have the patience but I can always admire the hard work and tenacity of others :)

This is really simple, but so striking.  I believe this is one of the quilts they are using to drum up members for their Modern Quilt Guild.  I'd like to join, but I am scared of the "quilt police"!

My photos are a bit blurry and for that I apologise.  I always feel so naughty taking photos at quilt shows because sometimes they don't like you to, but they don't always have a sign up that lets you know!  Lots of other people were snapping away so I was in good company and I couldn't see anything asking me not to but I guess I must have been a bit rushed because almost every shot I took was out of focus!

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