Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Quilt Market Report 4: Demos, Tips, and Booths

Our first full day at Market we went to 15 short demos of new products we thought would be interesting; the next 3 mornings we went to 90 minute classes on various techniques, some of which were useful, some not. After class, we'd "hit the floor", perusing the booths, talking to owners, authors, designers, watching demos, getting ideas. This post will be a hodge podge of a few of those experiences...so come wander with me!

Mary Jo Hiney...how could I have never heard of her before? She is a spectacular designer, with a spiritual heart of gold. Here she is demonstrating how she transfers just the minimum necessary marks for a silk ribbon motif. She pins the paper with the design directly over the fabric and lifts and marks, lifts and marks with a few short dash lines, not the whole motif. Made sense to me.

This is NOT my class sample, but a fellow student's who did a way better job than me. These are Mary Jo's hand dyed silk ribbons, which she had for sale in her booth, along with the most innovatively constructed and beautiful purse patterns I ever saw.

Here is Mary Jo and renowned ribbon embroidery teacher Helen Gibb, who shared her booth. I wish I had photographed Mary Jo's individual purses so you could see, but I encourage you to check out her patterns on the products page of her site, linked above, where she also has some truly lovely cards, and silk collections too.

Moving right along, I stopped at the Tsukineko booth where a terrific demo was going on.

Susan Holton has stitched the outline of this flower motif in black thread on cotton fabric, rather like creating the outline in a coloring book drawing. To thicken the ink, which is a liquid--and this was the hot tip--she mixes it with a little aloe vera gel. This prevents the ink from running outside the line while painting with it, but doesn't dilute the color. The aloe vera washes out, is non-toxic, readily available at your drugstore...what a fantastic idea!

Next up, Misty Fuse.

Here is a great trick they told me...it would have saved me hours of grief in the past had I known it...and some of you no doubt do....
I love to applique cut out letters onto fabric. The easiest way to do this is to put a layer of Misty Fuse (or presumably, any fusible web) over the letters you wish to cut out (I print them on the computer on plain paper). Trace the letters in pencil onto the Misty Fuse, not backwards, just over the printing so they read just as they were printed. Then fuse your traced fusible web onto the BACK of the fabric you wish to cut out and voila, the pencil marks are there for you to cut out around. Then your fabric letters are ready to fuse into place, and away you can go machine appliqueing them down. No muss, no fuss. The ladies here are beaming at me because I was so happy to learn this trick.

All right, I confess to some espionage here. I photographed this rick rack flower that was for sale in a booth--can't remember which one--because it is such an easy, neat idea. This was large rick rack but you could use any size...the zigs are just sewn together one by one, joined tightly into circle, and the zags make the petals. Plop a bead in the center and what a great 3D flower for your crazy quilt!

While we are on the subject of flowers, this one is from the River Silks booth. You can find a pattern and kit for it here. (Just scroll down the page until you see it.) The folks at River Silks were just fantastic. Their ribbon will not snag or run...they worked long and hard to get that figured out.

This beautiful burned ribbon rose was created by my roommate and fellow staffer at CQMagOnline, Barbara Blankenship. (CQMagOnline has just published a new issue, so do click that link and check it out!)

And here is Barbara's beautiful pansy.

And here is Barbara, very proud of the patterns of these flowers that are now being carried by Hanah Silks. Barbara demo-ed in their booth and her patterns have already been very well received. Congratualtions, Barbara!

I will feature other products on future blog posts as I use them...for my final post on Market tomorrow, I will feature some of the quilts I saw on exhibit, and some final thoughts on my experience. Hope you enjoyed this little window into my Market!

7 comments :

Kay said...

I'd be brain dead after that many demos. But Wow! What a great report. Thanks especially for the tip on thickening the Tsusendo inks. I may use that. The flowers are beautiful too.

verobirdie said...

I too would be overwhelmed by all the opportunities! Thanks for analyzing and sharing with us.
Is misty fuse really better than other web ? just curious. I use some web rather regurlarly. I saw the ads for misty fuse a lot, and wonder if it's better or not.

Barbara C said...

Thanks for the reports on your experiences. It sounds like so much fun.

Leonie said...

Whoah Allie - Having just returned from Toronto, I was more than bushed BEFORE I read your reviews from Houston! You must be running on pure adrenalin. Thanks for sharing all the wonderful news and special kudos to Barb for the beautiful silk work. Enjoy the rest of the week and have a safe trip home!

Sonji Hunt said...

Yum. I adore those flowers.

Susan said...

Thanks so much for sharing all those tips! My favorite was the one with the dye, and I'm going to find some of that gel and try it with the Oze Dyes, too.

CJ Stitching and Blooms said...

Hello Allie, I absolutely Loved all the pics you posted on the Houston Quilt Show. I especially loved looking at all those lovely silk ribbon flowers especially the Gardenia. Thanks for sharing with us. Hugs Judy in Western Michigan