Quilt Festival 2012 – the times they are a changin’

design, fabric, quilting, sewing

I’m at Quilt Festival in Cincinnati now and scheduled this post before I left. Amazingly before I left I Googled photos of previous Festivals to look at lighting options for our booth and stumbled upon a post I wrote for Whipup.net on this day in 2006. I wrote about my frustration that there wasn’t a place for modern quilters and that it was discouraging to feel as though the quilting world didn’t understand the movement that we had been trying to advance since 1999. The one bright spot that day was meeting Marcia Derse who was selling hand-dyed fabrics, long before she had a manufactured line.

Six years later we have a magazine for modern quilters, there are modern quilt guilds throughout the country, QuiltCon‘s organizers beat us to the gathering I suggested in this post and I’m glad. We have our hands full with the magazine and our other work so I’m just glad that someone else is helping to promote modern quilting.

We look forward to meeting other quilters at the Cincinnati Modern Quilt Guild Meet-Up and throughout the show. If you’re new to quilting or have forgotten what the quilting world was like a mere six years ago, click here for the link to the original post at whipup.

9 thoughts on “Quilt Festival 2012 – the times they are a changin’

  1. The whipup post was written in 2006-wow!. I remember getting your first book (2002) with Rockport Publishing and what a breath of fresh air! I have followed you and Bill ever since. You both have been a tremendous influence to modern quilters. Thank you.

  2. I love hearing this. We still have a long way to go tbough. I am a fairly new quilter and still find that a lot of the LQS are still in a time warp (they have small corners with modern materials that disappear so fast). My mother has long been a quilter and is just now getting into modern fabrics. She’s absolutely thrilled that my sister and I have taken up quilting but it wouldn’t have happened if we hadn’t seen modern designs in fresh fabrics. It’s funny that when I first became interested in quilting it was the batiks that drew me in because that was modern.

    1. Laura, I write from the Festival floor so I agree with you that there’s a LOOOONG way to go. However, it was great to read that post from 2006 and see even a bit of progress. Onward, right?

  3. Your original post in 2006 hit home when I read it. I can relate to your feelings about loving and pushing for something for so long, waiting for the rest of the world to catch on. Cherrywood has been hand-dyeing solids for over 20 years. While always being well-received at quilt shows, we still heard comments like “what would I use THAT for?” and “It’s so plain” and “Those just aren’t really my colors” (????). We have always known that solid fabrics give the eye a place to rest. Solid fabrics show off the lines in your design. Solid fabrics make your color choices more important.

    In this exciting time of “The Modern Quilt” movement (which you have been pioneering for so long), we are seeing solids popping up everywhere in commercial lines of fabric. It looks as if the Modern Quilter “gets it.” As a producer of quality hand-dyed cottons that are lovingly handled by many hands in the tedious process, I guess we can take comfort that “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.” Thank you, Weeks and Bill, for educating people about the POWER of SOLID COLOR.

    1. Karla – I smiled as I read your comment because I can hear the exhaustion in your voice that we feel at times — especially at retail shows — trying to blaze a trail of change in the quilting world. That’s why I posted that 2006 post. It can feel as though we’re making no headway and then suddenly you look up and realize that you’re somewhere else. I know that people appreciate Cherrywoods and I’m glad that our designs have given people a hint at what they can do with them. I love every scrap of them!

  4. Weeks, I thank you and Bill for all the inspiration and support you have offered for those of us interested in modern quilting. I’m glad to hear you’re seeing more and more modern quilters at the festival!

    1. Thank you Holly. At times it has felt as though we were beating our heads against a wall but we’ve always hoped that if we continued to do good work and made smart business decisions that at some point people would notice.

  5. I enjoyed meeting you and talking with you at the Quilt Festival in Cincinnati. I loved your booth and quilts! I have been enjoying the magazines, and am anxious to start on the quilt kits I bought.

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