Friday, July 29, 2005

It's not always work when you own a store. This Friday we actually got to play together. Cynthia's mom watched the store (have we mentioned that we love her?), and we drove to Quilt Odyssey in Hershey, PA. It's only 2 hours away from us, so it was an easy trip. It was a beautiful, carefully selected show. Here are a few of our favorite quilts. (You may notice a bias towards contemporary pieces.)

Let's start with a detail from the best of show. Exquisitely hand-appliqued and meticulously quilted, this champion piece combined wonderful fabric selection, perfect color choices, and a fabulous ribbon-work lattice setting to create this showstopper. Unfortunately, the camera didn't capture the masterful stitching or intensity of color. But you can still see how pretty it is:

This fire scene as viewed from across a lake also captured us. Heavy thread work combined with hand-painted fabrics resulted in piece that evoked a strong emotional response. The quilter says that you feel safe because of your vantage point:

Here we have a Harmonic Convergence quilt. We actually teach this quilt as one of our classes, so it was interesting to see it in the show. It's fun to make, and more simple than it appears. Ricky Tims designed the Harmonic Convergence.

And here's another geometric, with a nice diagonal play of light and dark:

These birds are shaped more like crows, but have yellow beaks more like grackles. You decide:

Nine-patch quilts are boring, right? No way! This is a 9-patch quilt. If you don't quilt, a 9-patch is a quilt block made up of 3 x 3 squares. It's normally a simple, plain block--the perfect block for a first-time quilter. But if you use patches that are each a tiny half-inch, and position them in a color wash, and spend about 3 years sewing, you might get something spectacular. The minute we turned the corner the luminous glow from this quilt drew us in:

This was a gorgous small wallhanging. Creating faces with just fabric and thread is not easy, but here you get a sense of how effectively this person captured a true portrait :

....with particularly creative quilting in the borders:

The Ninja is a famous National Geographic cover photograph. The quilter gained permission from the photographer and created this award-winning work. We were drawn to him again and again. The quilter clearly took a long time thinking about fabric choices, and used amazingly few different fabrics (combined with heavy stitching) to create a rich texture. His eyes were exceptionally well-done:

Finally, the wall of quilted bras gathered groups of giggling women (and a TV crew) :

Our favorite was the box of chocolates bra. (After all, we were in Hershey.)

Of course the show had a market too, as does every good quilt show. We each bought ourselves a few pieces of specialty batik fabric--Kim's for quilted shrine replicating the feel of late-Medieval religious iconography, Cynthia's for the back of a quilted sweatshirt jacket. Maybe we'll be there as vendors next year--but for this year, as one of our customers said when she saw us, we had fun just being civilians.

1 comment:

Deb said...

Well, I just can't stand to see no comments. I was at the store on Monday evening teaching a class and Kim tried to have two intelligent conversations with me. One was about Harry Potter and she just can't understand how I can still have the book on my shelf and how I feel compelled to finish Their Eyes Were Watching God before I can crack open the wizard book. Kim, it's all about rewards - once I finish trudging through Their Eyes (it really is a good book) I will reward myself with some fantasy. Plus, delayed gratification can be a good thing. Kim warned that the longer I wait the greater the chance of it being 'ruined.' OK Kim - soon.

The other intelligent conversation she tried to have with me was about the quilt show. We actually attended the same show but when she said, "Do you remember the Ninja?" "How about the blah, blah, blah?" - nothing but a blank stare. Well, as I hoped, the pictures did the trick. If you had asked about Marco Polo instead of the Ninja I would have been there. :) Here are my comments on a couple - The best in show besides being gorgeous for the reasons mentioned also had a touching story. The appliqué blocks were given to the quilter by friends when she moved so the quilt had a touching story as well. The simple nine-patch uses the concepts of a Bloomin' Nine Patch from the book Traditions with a Twist (available at SYAO) :) I have fabric for one of those.... The fire was incredible.

See, I did pay attention! :)