A Visit, a Quilt and a Week Off

International Quilt Festival

This week is Spring Break here in the Chicago suburbs. The kids and I have just been hanging out at home, playing outside during the few glorious days of sunshine. I’ve only spent a few stolen moments here and there at the sewing machine, starting work on teacher quilts. (I need to make TWO this year!)

International Quilt Festival

Last weekend my parents came to visit and we went to Quilt Festival in Chicago. I have been really out of the loop I guess, because I had no idea it moved from the Summer to Spring! Luckily my mom was on top of it and planned her visit accordingly. The quilts you see in the top photo of this post are of the Ruby Jubilee exhibit. If you are a regular reader here, you’ve heard me say I love, love, love red and white quilts. So this exhibit was a treat for me. Inspired by the Infinite Variety: Three Centuries of Red and White Quilts exhibit in New York City, these quilts are a collection of old and new, modern and traditional. All stunning.

Cog + Wheel adaptation by Lorellen Moore

My mom also brought her latest quilt finish to visit. (Hi Mom!) We took it over to my favorite local barn for photos. Isn’t it cool? This quilt was created using Denyse Schmidt’s Cog + Wheel pattern, obviously with some big modifications. She changed where the pattern has negative space and prints, created her own paper piecing template (sorry, I can’t share that as Cog + Wheel is for sale), made some half blocks, rearranged the layout, added a border…

Cog + Wheel adaptation by Lorellen Moore

The prints are mostly from Lotta Jansdotter’s new collection, Follie. You can prints from this collection at following shops:

Gotham Quilts
Harts Fabric
Sew Modern
Fat Quarter Shop
Fabric Spark

She also mixed in some large scale Japanese prints (those letters in the background).

Cog + Wheel adaptation by Lorellen Moore

My mom quilted this on her new BERNINA 750QE (yep, we are now machine twins!) using a wavy stitch. You can read more about creating that stitch here.

I love the quilt mom!

QuiltCon 2015

QuiltCon 2015

I’m back! What a two weeks. I went from Austin to Naples to Orlando and then back to Chicago. I’m sorry things have been so quiet here on the blog for the last couple of weeks. I started my time away at QuiltCon and I thought it’d be fun to share some pictures and thoughts! (If you aren’t tired of reading them on everyone else’s blogs.)

QuiltCon 2015

Let’s be honest, it was no hardship to trade subzero temperatures for 60’s and blue skies. This was my second time visiting Austin and it is just a fun town – very easy to get around for a convention. I think I mentioned in my pre-QuiltCon post that I was only there for half the convention due to a family wedding…but I do feel like I squeezed a lot in during that time.

QuiltCon 2015

First things first, once again QuiltCon was super well done. I know absolutely nothing about planning a convention, but I am so impressed with how everything played out. I checked in on Thursday morning. There was a CRAZY and I mean CRAZY long line, but once the kiosks opened it moved really quickly and I was up in my first class of the day with plenty of time to spare.

My first (and only) class was embroidery with Alison Glass. Alison set up this giant frame and showed us embroidery stitches super sized so everyone could see. SO SMART!

QuiltCon 2015

Then we all got to work on our projects while we chatted. It was sort of like sewing social time and I loved every minute of it. Very relaxing.

QuiltCon 2015

I spent some time in lectures, and the rest of the time on the floor. I really focused my attention on the quilts. And there were so many awesome quilts to see. It was pretty overwhelming (in the best way possible).

QuiltCon 2015: Best in Show: i Quilt by Kathy York
Best in Show: i Quilt by Kathy York

Most of the quilts I saw did not use a standard grid layout. I think if your goal is to have a quilt in this show next year, that should be a strong hint as to what you might want to consider submitting.

QuiltCon 2015: Deconstructed Lonestar by Amy Struckmeyer
Deconstructed Lonestar by Amy Struckmeyer

I noticed a ton of matchstick quilting. Another hint, hint I think.

QuiltCon 2015: The Rabbit Hole by Nydia Kennley
The Rabbit Hole by Nydia Kennley

I’m a huge fan of Nydia Kennley’s quilts. Above you’ll see her with her award winning improvisational quilt, The Rabbit Hole. I watched this one come together on Instagram – you must follow her if you have an Instagram account! The quilting alone. Wow. It’s matchstick quilting, a mix of different colored thread, with some hand quilted straight lines mixed in as well.

QuiltCon 2015: Tessellation 3 by Nydia Kennley
Tessellation 3 by Nydia Kennley

Lots of solids (yay!). That’s probably a surprise to no one. :)

QuiltCon 2015: Emergent by Kari Vojtechovsky
Emergent by Kari Vojtechovsky

QuiltCon 2015: Fresh Pack by Dorie Schwarz
Fresh Pack by Dorie Schwarz

A fun moment for me was to turn down this aisle and see quilts by my coauthors Katie, Lee and me, all related to Vintage Quilt Revival : two quilts from the book itself and one quilt that was a spin off from one of the patterns.

QuiltCon 2015: Modern Traditionalism
Far Left: Spiced Chai by Katie Clark Blakesley
Third Quilt from Left: Freeflow by Lee Heinrich
Fourth Quilt from Left: Star Bright by Faith Jones

A personal all time favorite of mine, Improv Double Wedding Ring by Natalie Sabik, was on display. What a treat to see this one in person.

QuiltCon 2015: Improv Double Wedding Ring by Natalie Sabik
Improv Double Wedding Ring by Natalie Sabik

Overall, I loved the show – it was inspiring, informative, and well run. There was even a QuiltCon app with schedule information, a floor layout map, directory, etc. The only one thing I would change for next time…I’d love to see some row numbers hanging from the ceiling. Because let’s be honest. I can’t read a map to save my life. And most booths didn’t display their booth number anywhere, so I never knew where I was or how to get to my goal. I also am pretty sure I missed half the quilts because I spent a lot of time lost. :)

The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters

After Austin I flew to Florida for a few days. Part of this time was spent relaxing poolside with my one and only purchase from QuiltCon – The Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters: A Guide to Creating, Quilting, and Living Courageously by Sherri Lynn Wood. This book is beautiful. Just trust me and go buy it. I’m sure I’ll be doing a more in depth review of it soon on the blog.

QuiltCon will now be an annual show. 2016 will be held in Pasadena, California and 2017 in Savannah, Georgia. Maybe we can beg our way into a future year in the middle of the country? Although who am I kidding? No one wants to visit Chicago in February! :)

QuiltCon ~ Schedule, Quilts and Book Signing

QuiltCon 2015

After what feels like a very long wait since my last trip to Austin, QuiltCon is finally here again! Two years ago, QuiltCon opened it’s doors as the industry’s first quilt show to focus on modern quilting. It was such an inspiring experience (and escaping Chicago in February wasn’t exactly a hardship!) I am pretty excited to have the chance to go back this year.

I thought I’d post my schedule in hopes of meeting some of you! I’m flying in Wednesday evening and will be attending Thursday and Friday. We have a family wedding this weekend, so I’m heading out Saturday bright and early.

Thursday
2/19, 9:00 AM – 420A Intro to Embroidery with Alison Glass
2/19, 1:00 PM – LE03 Creative Exercises to Inspire Your Design Process with Alexia Marcelle Abegg
2/19, 5:00 PM – LE07 Use of Negative Space in Modern Quilt Design with Alissa Haight Carlton
2/19, 8:00 PM – PAR Moda Party

Friday
2/20, 11:00 AM – LE10 Large-Scale Piecing with Heather Jones
2/20, 12:00 PM – LE11 Panel Discussion: All About Fabric Design
2/20, 3:00 PM – Sew Much More booth (local Bernina dealer) #507, Vintage Quilt Revival book signing

Fresh Lemons Quilts

I also have 100 buttons for those that are doing a Quilt Con Pin Swap. Or even if you don’t have one to swap, I’d love to give you one if you stop me and say hi. Basically I don’t want to bring home 98 buttons. :)

I’m honored to have four quilts hanging in the show and two more that will be in a demo on Sunday.

Fresh Lemons Quilts Quilt Con Quilts

Hanging are This Way, That Way, Starfall II, Star Bright and Big Top.

I’ve shipped off my Unraveled and Poinsettia quilts to the lovely folks at Westminster Fibers for use in a demo/discussion on Saturday. I don’t have all the time/location details – but I will try to update this post once I know!

ETA: Saturday, 3:00, demo station B

Fresh Lemons Quilts Quilt Con Quilts

And finally, I will be in the Sew Much More booth (the local Bernina dealer) (#507), Friday at 3:00pm, to do a Vintage Quilt Revival book signing with Lee Heinrich. They will have books for sale, but you can also bring your personal copy of the book and we will happily sign that! :)

If you are coming, I hope we can meet! If you aren’t attending, I plan a wrap up post here on the blog when I return.

Houston Quilt Market

Vintage Quilt Revival Schoolhouse : Fresh Lemons Quilts
Vintage Quilt Revival schoolhouse session
Photo courtesy of Tracy Mooney/Generation Q Magazine

I’ve been back from Quilt Market a few weeks now, but it seems like just days. Things have been crazy busy at home and I’ve finally had a chance to go through my photos. (All on my phone, I just had no more room to pack my nice camera.) I wanted to share a bit about my trip. Mostly photos, but everyone likes new-fabric-eye candy, right?

This was my first trip to Quilt Market (trade show). I’ve been to several Quilt Festivals (open to public show), so I wasn’t completely flying blind, but it was pretty exciting to see the “business” side of things. Katie, Lee and I were there to promote our upcoming book, Vintage Quilt Revival. A huge surprise arrived at our doorsteps just a couple days before we left – a real, life, actual copy of the book!

Vintage Quilt Revival : Fresh Lemons Quilts

We knew we’d be getting one advance copy about a month before the first big shipment arrived at the publisher, but we weren’t expecting for several more weeks. To say we were excited would be an understatement. And also, to have the book in person and be able to show it to people in Houston was awesome.

We arrived Thursday evening and had our Schoolhouse presentation Friday afternoon. For those that haven’t been to Quilt Market, Schoolhouses are timed sessions where you get a chance to present your product (fabric line, notion, book, etc) to a group of people (shop owners, press, etc). There are tons of Schoolhouses going on at any given time, in rooms all over the convention center. I was quite nervous because 1) I’d never been to a Schoolhouse before and 2) what if no one showed up to ours?? We spent the morning visiting other Schoolhouses and I started to get more comfortable. Everyone in the audiences was so kind and all the other presenters said they were nervous too. It was just one of those times where you realize everyone there is human and wants to see each other succeed.

Vintage Quilt Revival : Fresh Lemons Quilts

So Friday afternoon we had our Schoolhouse session and it went really well! We were able to share our book, how it’s broken down, and probably 80% of the projects. We had a great response! After that was over we were able to officially relax and enjoy the rest of the weekend.

I went into Quilt Market thinking there weren’t a ton of upcoming fabric lines that I just needed. Boy was I wrong! Haha I think there were 2 lines that excited me the most. First, Botanics by Carolyn Friedlander.

Botanics by Carolyn Friedlander : Fresh Lemons Quilts

This line follows Carolyn’s hugely popular Architextures line. Carolyn uses the same small scale style, but this time the line is inspired by the organic world. She works a bit of gold into some of the prints in a really, really amazing way. This was the only line I actually spent money on over the weekend, coming home with a Fat Quarter set.

Quilt Market Booth by Carolyn Friedlander : Fresh Lemons Quilts

The next collection that really excited me was by Anna Maria Horner (of course, would you expect anyone else?!)

Anna Maria Horner Quilt Market : Fresh Lemons Quilts

FreeSpirit Fabrics has coordinated new collections by various designers called True Colors. These are fabrics that can be used as blenders and will be available for longer periods of time. I love Anna Maria’s fabrics so much, her sense of color is always right up my alley.

Anna Maria Horner Quilt Market : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Her booth showcased both her True Colors collection and her new line, Dowry.

Probably the biggest surprise and talk of market was Cotton + Steel: the new collaboration between RJR Fabrics and Melody Miller, along with designers Rashida Coleman-Hale, Alexia Abegg, Kim Kight, and Sarah Watts.

Cotton + Steel at Quilt Market : Fresh Lemons Quilts

My head is kind of exploding at the amount of talent in this group and I cannot wait to see what they have to show us later in 2014.

Cotton + Steel at Quilt Market : Fresh Lemons Quilts

I think what I love most about this group is their willingness to think big and take chances. That’s not something that comes naturally to me and I have so much awe and respect for people that can do that. They’ve shown they have a great mix of artistic talent and business savvy and I think that is a rare (and powerful) combination. If you haven’t had a chance to watch their video, be sure to check it out.

It was fun to just walk the show and see friends and celebrate their success.

Jeni Baker with her bright and happy new line, Dreamin’ Vintage. I predict this line is going to fly off the shelves.

Dreamin' Vintage by Jeni Baker at Quilt Market : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Vanessa Christenson’s new Color Me Happy line. I even got my hands on her new pillow patterns – you’ll be seeing more of them later!

Color Me Happy by V and Co. at Quilt Market : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Designer Marcia Derse and I, holding up my Lighthouse Quilt that I made for her Quilt Market booth! Featuring her upcoming Palette fabric line.

Marcia Derse - Lighthouse Quilt : Fresh Lemons QUilts

I seriously have a million pictures. :)

It was great to meet designers in person whom I have admired their work so much. Camille Roskelley of Bonnie and Camille.

Camille Roskelley at Quilt Market : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Leah Duncan with her second line for Art Gallery Fabrics. LOVE her artwork!

Leah Duncan at Quilt Market : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Leah Duncan at Quilt Market : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Sarah Jane with her adorable new line Wee Wander – and her new baby! Check out in the teepee on the right!

Lots of new solids are coming out, including Modern Solids by Alissa Haight Carlton, which are a really cool looking crossweave…

Modern Solids by Alissa Haight Carlton at Quilt Market : Fresh Lemons Quilts

and another by Denyse Schmidt for FreeSpirit Fabrics.

Modern Solids by Denyse Schmidt at Quilt Market : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Ok, I could go on and on. I think I already have! It was a great time, I’m finally not exhausted anymore and really just inspired to get back at the sewing machine. I hope you enjoyed the photos!