Tuesday, May 21, 2019

International Quilt Market Spring 2019

I'm just back from attending my very first International Quilt Market and my head is spinning from the experience!  But having had a bit of time to process and look over my hundreds of photos, here are my 5 biggest takeaways from Market.

1.  Starstruck!

I arrived in Kansas City on Wednesday evening and after checking into my hotel, my first order of business was to get my bearings and scope out the Convention Center.  So I pressed the button to call the elevator and the doors opened to reveal Bonnie and Camille.  As in the amazing mother-daughter team of Bonnie Olaveson (Cotton Way) and Camille Roskelley (Thimble Blossoms)!  I walked with them to the Convention Center and they were both so lovely and kind.  They left to begin work on their booth and I left the Convention Center more than a little starstruck, and that was just the beginning!

In no particular order, here are some of the other amazing designers/quilters/teachers/authors that I encountered at Market.  Some I heard speak, some I saw from a distance, but all made me feel like a giddy fangirl.

Pat Sloan
Victoria Findlay Wolfe
Jo Morton
Gail Pan
Jenny Doan
Jan Patek
Dawn Heese
Bonnie Sullivan
Corey Yoder
Sherri McConnell
Robin Pickens
Alison Glass
Amy Smart
Edyta Sitar
Weeks Ringle
Tula Pink

2.  Creativity

Walking the floor of Market was an amazing experience.  The sheer amount of creativity on display was overwhelming, but inspiring.  Each booth had its own distinctive look and feel and you never knew what you'd find when you turned a corner.  Here are a few of my favorite booths:

Joy's Studios little cafe scene — I was in Paris a couple of months ago and now I'm a sucker for all things Parisian!

Tilda's booth.  The quilting on the plum and sage green quilts was outrageous!

Jillily Studio's farmer's market scene was charming, right down to the baskets of berries on the farm stand.

Elizabeth Hartman's booth—how cute and colorful is this?!  I loved the cascading leaves.
I loved the quietly colorful work of Kori Turner-Goodhart of Olive Grace Studios.
3.  Color

There was color everywhere at Market, both pastel and brilliant, but the color that I noticed most was orange!  I'm not sure if I was just in an orange state of mind—let's be honest, I was feeling pretty happy—but I felt like I saw shades of orange everywhere.  My mom will be thrilled—orange is her favorite color!!

Corey Yoder's "Sugarcreek" (Moda)

Gabrielle Neil Design Studio's "Midnight Rose" (Riley Blake)

Sherri & Chelsi's "Harper's Garden" (Moda)

Cotton + Steel

Robin Pickens' "Painted Meadow" (Moda)

Heather Mulder Peterson of Anka's Treausres' "Wildflower Bouquet" (Riley Blake)

4.  Butterflies and Flowers

The shapes I noticed everywhere, and granted it was "Spring" Market, were butterflies and flowers.  Here's a sampling of what I saw:

"Take Flight" quilt pieced by Natalie Crabtree and quilted by Holly Seever.

See the butterflies in the center quilt?  And look, half of them are orange!

Lori Holt's "Granny Chic (Riley Blake)

Free Spirit's "Tropical Flora" quilt featuring Tula Pink's "Monkey Wrench"

Amanda Murphy's "Nightingale" (Contempo Studios)

Free Bird Quilting Design's "Indha Blossoms" quilt featuring Indha Batkis from Me+You (Hoffman Fabrics).

5.  Kindness

Perhaps my biggest takeaway was the kindness I encountered at Market.  C&T Publishing and EE Schenck were kind enough to host book signings for me and their reps at Market were generous and supportive.  The many exhibitors, designers, shop owners and industry professionals I met were friendly and enthusiastic — eager to share their time, knowledge and experience.  And the people of Kansas City, a city I've never visited before, were warm, welcoming and accommodating. 

That's me at the EE Schenck booth with the summer collection from my book, "Stitching for the Seasons".

I knew I'd come away from Market inspired by the quilts, but I didn't expect to be so inspired by the people.  Two days after I met Bonnie and Camille in the elevator, I finally had an opportunity to find their booth on the Market floor.  And as I walked toward their booth, amidst the crowds and the noise, they actually called out to me by name.  I felt surprised, pleased and as I so often do as a member of the quilting community, grateful.