I took myself off, with TFQ, to Road to California this past weekend, which is in Ontario, California. I have never been to this show before and it is touted as one of the largest quilt events on the West Coast. I am spoiled by having PIQF in my backyard.
Road to California is a nice comfy sort of show, but more like a large guild show than “one of the largest quilt events on the West Coast”. Also, there were a lot of vendors. I would say 2/3s of the space was for vendors.
Speaking of vendors, Eleanor Burns was there. I actually saw her doing her demonstrations! I chatted with her a little bit in the course of a humming bird demo she was doing. She is not the stereotypical haughty celebrity. She was very nice, smiled for everyone who wanted to take a photo and chatted amiably. She is obviously well schooled to being ‘on’, because I saw her continue to smile and demonstrate while listening to someone who whispered a question into her ear.
The majority of the floor space was given over to vendors and the vendor representation was very good. Not only were there vendors I hadn’t seen before, but the vendors were cheerful. I find the vendors at PIQF to be quite surly, so this was a nice change. I was pleased to see Quiltin’ Cousins from Pismo Beach. Shawn, the owner, was really nice and friendly and we went back to her booth a few times to look at everything. We met her at Long Beach in 2010.
I saw a 1930s book that included a pattern called Cowboy Stars (on that table with the pastel quilt on it), but I didn’t buy it. I hope to find it at the library or find the pattern in one of the Kansas City Star books or in EQ7. It has some nasty diamonds and triangles, so I don’t plan on starting it anytime soon.
TFQ bought a pattern she called “not a pineapple” that was really called Licorice Allsorts (the black background quilt on the left). It does look like a baby Pineapple and I am eager to see how it is constructed.
The quilts were good. Different types and styles than I normally see. TFQ pointed out to me, quite rightly, that the fabrics being snapped up from the vendors – yards of Kaffe Fassett and Philip Jacobs blooms, Moda charm packs and Jelly Rolls, lines of 1930s fabrics – were not represented in 90% of the quilts we saw. We walked back through the show and found the quilts made from solids, tone-on-tones, and batiks predominantly. See if you agree from the photos I took. Yes, there were a few quilts with prints, but very few. What are you doing with those lines of fabric you buy? Do you buy fabrics to collect? What are you using for your current quilt?
There was virtually no representation of Modern Quiltmakers at the show. I have to say that I have used a couple of ‘modern’ lines lately and those quilts will probably never see a show. I am, frankly, too lazy to do the paperwork to enter quilts into shows. I used to do it all the time, but the things they ask seem to pointless and a recent entry found the sponsoring organization to be so disorganized I had to essentially send my materials in twice. Still, I am not seeing the quilts like I make, so perhaps I should carve out some time to enter shows?
I bought a few little trinkets. I don’t buy many patterns, so that cut out a whole shopping niche. There were books in which I was really interested, but want to check out from the Library first to see if I REALLY need to add them to my collection. The fabric was a free gift from Quilt in a Day and I think the ruler will be good for making scrap blocks. TFQ bought me a bottle of buttons to replace those I have been using to embellish card holders and Christmas stockings. She said it was part of my birthday gift.
Now for the sentimental drivel. You can stop reading now if you are only interested in quilting. The show was great. Getting away was great, but I was very pleased to come to my dear DH, who picked us up from the train, had dinner ready and made a birthday cake (yes, my birthday was Friday, in case you missed it). I have been sick on and off for a month and am still hacking up a lung. If the trip hadn’t involved reservations and flights, I probably would have cancelled and stayed home. I enjoyed myself, loved the quilts, enjoyed the vendors but was very pleased to come home to my house and my family.