Tuesday, April 17, 2007

MQX Overload

The 2007 Machine Quilters Expo is now history... and I am home with so much to remember and process! I feel very fortunate that I was able to participate this year. It was a bit overwhelming to take in all the new information in class, see all the new products available, and study all the fabulous quilts on display in the shows, exhibits, and even the vendor booths. My favorite quilt was Janet Fogg's Kitty Corner, a showstopper at all venues at which it appears.

On Wednesday, the show and vendors were not open until evening, so I took two afternoon classes. The first was with fabulous quilt artist Jamie Wallen. What a nice person! He shared many freehand designs with us, which he drew on a whiteboard that was also projected on TV. Since I had previously taken a workshop with Nichole Webb, many of the designs from their shared book were familiar to me. But, I really had never perfected his "Flurry of Angels" technique. Can't wait to try it! He also brought a few quilts to show us. The green one is on his Internet site. How can he get such beautiful stitches with metallic threads? I am going to try.

After that I added the Sally Terry class called "Hooked on Feathers." This one was lots of fun, and I am looking forward to using these designs as well.

Wednesday night we got a "Sneak Peek" at the Quilt Shows. I was immediately humbled to see the incredible work that today's quilters are creating. In addition to the regular show, the $100,000 Quilt Challenge winners for 2006 were on display. What a treat!

Thursday I got up early for a session on machine tension with a Gammill dealer. Just about every class I have taken gives you different information about how to set the tension. Now I have more notes to refer to when I can't get it right.

After that, it was an all day class with fabulous quilt artist Sharon Schamber. I learned some great techniques for preparing applique with various types of glue. There was not a prayer of finishing the project in class, especially after we blew the electric circuits in the room when the irons fired up! Sharon provided a DVD that should guide me to finish the project at home when I get around to it. The best part was seeing the trunk show of her quilts, which she generously allowed us to photograph, touch, and ogle. What a talented lady!

Thursday night we were supposed to go to the fashion show, but roommate Bev and I were both exhausted, so we opted for Appleby's and a bottle of chardonnay that we took back to our room.

Friday I had an early class with Kimmy Brunner, who taught her method of making feathers. Kimmy is not only funny and talented, but she is a wonderful teacher! We drew, drew, and drew some more. I hope to be able to quilt like Kimmy some day!

I volunteered to be the assistant at the next class session. Lucky for me, I was assigned to a class with Dawn Cavanaugh. It was supposed to be a "HodgePodge" of tips for newbies. Well, I have been quilting for four years, and most of her advice was new information for me! Dawn was able to explain so many things that I have never tried. What a great help!

Friday night was the banquet. Let me just say that my roommate Bev and I were staying at The Comfort Inn, just a couple miles from the Radisson but too far to walk. There was a free shuttle available to take quilters from all the surrounding motels to the convention site. However, there were far too many people waiting for it to accommodate. My group did not get to the banquet until there were no seats left in the room. Kindly, JL arranged for a table to be set up for us...right in the front of the room, one of the best seats in the house! I got to see my original quilt teacher, Linda Taylor, win Teacher of the Year! What a wonderful honor for her. Linda is such a special person. She is a SuperStar of Quilting with her own TV show, books, patterns, instructional videos, fabulous award-winning quilts, quilting retreats and classes. But as she says herself, she is about as normal as they come! She is so willing to share her knowledge and talents. Congratulations, Linda!

As a little side note, I experienced my second spring snowfall within a week! It started snowing Thursday about noon, and continued all day. So pretty! Luckily for Bev and me, Saturday was clear, and we flew home before the next big storm occurred on Sunday. I came down with a cold or virus right before our departure, so I have been laying low and going through my photographs since I got home. Nothing like the luxury of a day or two in your jammies when you don't feel up to par!

Today I am feeling much better- so I plan to collect my Round Robin quilt from Janice. Can't wait to see it!


Vicki W said...

Wasn't it just the best time! I too loved Kitty Korner. I took Janet's 2-day quilt design class and it was awesome. If you every get an opportunity to take that class - don't miss it! Sorry I did not get to meet you there.

Jeanne Turner McBrayer said...

Hi Vicki,

I looked for you, but did not spot you at MQX. I expect to be seeing a giant cat, bear, or other critter walking out of your next quilt after your class with Janet!

Hope you didn't come home with the MQX crud like I did- I am just getting over it today.

Take Care!