Recently I showed you some fun pictures of the APQS team dressed up for Halloween. But so much more happened in Houston than just some Halloween fun!
I love the Houston show. What sets it apart is the size of the vendors, the size of the quilt displays, and the size of the crowd. Everything is bigger in Texas! The Houston Quilt Festival celebrated it’s 40th anniversary this year and their Ruby anniversary was reflected in a spectacular red and white quilt exhibit that spiraled up to the rafters. It took my breath away! The quality of the artistry on display is humbling. The quilt festival takes up the entire George Brown Convention Center in Houston. It is the largest convention Houston hosts and they expect around 68,000 quilters every year. If you’ve never been to this show, it is definitely a bucket list type of event!
This is one of my favorite shows to attend because, well, quilts, quilts, quilts! Everything that’s for sale in the entire industry is at this show. It’s like going to camp too – I get to see so many of my friends. I absolutely adore working quilt shows for APQS. I get to talk about my favorite quilting machines, teach new longarm quilters some tricks, hang out with my friends, and see incredible masterpieces. What’s not to love?
This year was extra special for me because APQS asked me to present an award at the awards ceremony on their behalf. The quilt artists I admire and all of the movers and shakers in the industry attend the ceremony. It was a great honor to represent APQS and I have little to no memory of what I actually said. I tend to blank out when I’m up in front of a crowd like that. I started thinking about the first time I went to the Houston show so many, many years ago. I was a new quilter and was struggling with free motion quilting on my grandmother’s Singer. Little did I know, someday I would be up on the big stage presenting a top award! What a dream come true!
Now, about those beautiful quilts on display :)! My favorite quilts typically aren’t necessarily the ones that got awards. This quilt, called Red Sunflower by Susan Bianchi, was made totally out of buttons and I thought it was just fabulous. I think my favorite quilt was one made by Janneke De Vries-Bodzinga, from the Netherlands, and it was inspired by the raw power of a hurricane. The colors, the piecing, and the impact of the quilt was phenomenal. I got to meet her too AND she uses an APQS George sit down machine!
Did anyone else make it out to Houston? What were some of your favorite quilts?
Of course, there were so many more quilts that I loved than just these two, but I’m saving some of those for this week’s Ohio Valley Longarm Guild meeting. We’ll be discussing some of this year’s quilts and trends I saw in Houston. If you’re in the Louisville area, we’d love to have you join us this Wednesday, November 12 at 10am at the APQS Store in Louisville.