So what a fun but exhausting (both emotionally, mentally and physically) 4 days I had at QuiltCon in Austin. Some great class, lectures, quilts and of course meeting other quilters who are also passionate  about our craft as I am.   I left after work on Wednesday so it was nearly midnight before I checked in to the Radisson and then was up early on Thursday to go to the  conference center in  time for check in for my first class.

After check in the first person I saw was Maddie  who blogs here  http://domesticanarchy.com and founder of  The Bad Ass Quilters Society. Maddie is so sweet and it was great to meet someone who I have know online for a while.

I spent 6 hours on Thursday with Angela Walters as I took her “Machine Quilting for a Modern Quilt” class. It was a great class, Angela has a funny sense of humor and very encouraging even if my free motion quilting looks like chicken scratches she was full of praise and encouragement.  At the end of the class I have lots of new stuff to try when digitizing designs for my long arm and made some new quilting friends.

Angela talking to the class

Angela talking to the class

Loved seeing so many longarms in one room

Loved seeing so many long arms in one room

wonderful example of Angela's quilting

wonderful example of Angela’s quilting

Another example of Angela's work

Another example of Angela’s work

At lunch and once my class was finished, I headed to the show floor to look at the quilts and visit the vendor booths. Here are some of the quilts

Best of Show – Double Edged Love by Victoria Findlay Wolfe and quilted by  Lisa Sipes, that Crazy Quilty girl

Double Edged Love by  Victoria Findlay Wolfe

Double Edged Love by
Victoria Findlay Wolfe

 

Close up  of the wonderful quilting by Lisa Sipes

Close up of the wonderful quilting by Lisa Sipes

 Rhythm & Blues Anne Deister – got third place in Use of Negative Space– Large Quilts

Rhythm & Blues by Anne Deister

Rhythm & Blues by Anne Deister

One of my favorite quilts was by  Alison Glass and quilted by Lisa Sipes

 

Overgrown by Alison Glass Viewers Choice

Overgrown by Alison Glass Viewers Choice

The quilting on this was just amazing, I went back a number of times to look at it –  Lisa is an amazing quilter

Lisa's amazing quilting

Lisa’s amazing quilting

Also loved this quilt Broken Diamonds by Kati Spencer which took a second place ribbon

Broken Diamonds by Kati Spencer

Broken Diamonds by Kati Spencer

Another one that caught my eye was Mobile  by Elizabeth Brandt which took a 1st place ribbon for Use of Negative Space – Small Quilts

Mobile by Elizabeth Brandt

Mobile by Elizabeth Brandt

It’s Just Peachy, made and quilted by Nancy Scott

It’s Just Peachy by Nancy Scott

It’s Just Peachy by Nancy Scott

Loved the curved quilting on this one

awesome quilting

awesome quilting

This is just a subset of the quilts on display.  I took allot more pictures and will do another post to show more of them.

Another highlight of the weekend was the series of lectures I attended on Saturday. David and Amy Butler were both very entertaining and inspiring speakers who talks covered both  Modern Lifestyle Photography and Creating Your Unique Color Story.   Weeks Ringle and Bill Kerr another wonderful husband and wife team who together and  run the Modern Quilt Studio. Their talk took us through their quilting journey  and I really identified with how they ended their talk and gave us all homework where they challenged us to

  • Know thy self - figure out your strengths and use them
  • Aim high - don't follow the crowd but aim higher and define your own style based on your skill set
  • Challenge yourself -if you could only make one quilt what would it b
  • Reflect - and learn new skills
  • Think broadly - learn from all genres of quilting
  • Experiment - with color, stitching and fabrics and make things like you have never made before
  • Share - your quilting skills and talents with those around your
  • Give and receive- constructive criticism - 4 positive things and 1 are to improve
  • Encourage - one another
  • Have Fortitude- keep going even if you want to quit
  • Document - your process and everything you create
  • Evolve - look at your quilts overtime and now how you have evolved = what makes your best quilt the best?

For more details. you can read more about it here QuiltCon Homework

Jacquie Gering shared her  quilting journey from teaching herself to  quilt who  in five years had become such an wonderful  creative inpsiring  quilter.   She started her talk telling us about her Father and Mother who were “Makers” and such an influence for her quilting.  She shared her love of family, giving and quilting with us all. Her talk was so touching – we cried, we laughed, we were inspired by her and overall I just fell in love with her and her quilts!.  The room gave her a standing ovation she just rocked.

Denyse Schmidt  finished the day with a wonderful  talk  on her quilting and design journey,  talked about her lessons learned and also encouraged us to” be true to oneself” and authentic. She has wonderful quote through out her presentation and one that I remember –

“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”        Oscar Wilde

To see some of the great talks check out some of them here on Craftsy.com where they are sharing some of the lectures free of charge.

At the beginning of this post I mentioned that QuiltCon left me emotionally exhausted and this stemmed from a controversial lecture on Saturday that left me wondering – If I fit into the Modern Quilting movement? What is my quilting style? Do I need to be defined by a group who seemed to think it was OK to  be demeaning of  other  quilting styles? The rules of Modern Quilting presented just seemed like something that didn’t leave room for innovation and seemed like it excluded so much that it really did concern me. It got me thinking “Why does it have to be us versus them?” We need to acknowledge that all quilters   are bonded  together by a love of creating with fabric and making quilt that we love.  Each genre of quilting can teach each other so much we need to embrace that and honor the tradition that has come before us and build on that to create wonderful quilters in the future.  Let us just continue to make quilts and not worry if they are modern or traditional this really should not matter. I will not change what I do to fit in the clique that reminds me of the  of popular girls from high school who defines the rules to be part of their club.  Lots of other blog posts have covered this topic more eloquently then I have so I will leave it at this and finish up with some pictures of another wonderful quilt from the show that I just loved:

 

Stella!  by Susan Strong and quilted by Ardelle Kerr

Stella! by Susan Strong and quilted by Ardelle Kerr

Close up of the amazing quilting

Close up of the amazing quilting

love the quilting

love the quilting

 

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