Monday, March 7, 2016

The Quilt & Sewing Fest of New Jersey

On Saturday, I went to the Quilt & Sewing Fest of New Jersey.  It is an annual show put on by the Mancuso organization but a smaller operation than their fall show that is nearby in Pennsylvania.

I started with the exhibit quilts and this one quickly caught my eye.  Humor and quilting, so perfect together!  Fortunately, Mr. Main Street is no Brad; the Mister is pretty much oblivious to how much fabric I have (and how much I've spent on it).

Dottie"s Lament by Suzanne Bower, Dublin, PA

Here is another eye-catching quilt.  It is an abstract depiction of a flower bed at the peak of summer, pieced in half hexagons.  

Summer Peaks, by Irene Marchetto, Chatham, NJ

Summer Peaks, detail of the piecing

I'm afraid I'm getting jaded.  Perhaps it is the impact of the internet.  But I did not see many quilts I really liked this year.  The exhibits included the award winning quilts from the 2016 Mid-Atlantc Quilt Competition (another Mancuso show, it took place in Feb. in Virginia).  Yes, the award winners were spectacular but most were very densely machine quilted and I am not really a fan; I like a quilt that drapes.  The other exhibit quilts were  mini collections from various places.  For example, I saw several Kaffe Fassett quilts from Liza Priory Lucy but they look familiar, like I've seen them before at other shows.  

What made the show worthwhile for me was several new-to-me vendors with unique merchandise.  I picked up some Oakshott fat quarters from Pinwheels, purveyors of Daiwabo taupes from Japan, ball and chain zippers, wood buttons, as well as the Oakshott.  Her booth was very attractive and welcoming, lovely to browse.

Then I discovered Atelier D'Isabelle, selling her original design stitcheries in kit form, along with linen fat quarters and trims from France.  (Isabelle is actually French and her website is in French.)  Really cute and different; I bought two kits that can be made into small pictures or pillows.  

No, I haven't finished mine already.  These photos are from the booth.

Both L'atelier D'Isabelle and Pinwheels will be at the AQS show in Lancaster, PA next week.  If you are going, I recommend you check them out.

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  1. Glad you got to go to the show and see a few new things.

  2. I was thinking you were really quick when I looked and the needle points were done... then read not your purchases (oooops). Very true about a lot of the shows lately... seems like the quilts were in other shows and not a lot of new ones! Still love to see what is out there and usually find some I really want to try and make. Do you go to the PA show in March Cathy?

  3. Haha -- I feel your quilt show pain. I think maybe it's the internet that does it to us -- we see so many beautiful quilts online that it almost seems like there's not much new. Or, maybe that people just aren't spending the time to hand-quilt beautiful quilts anymore -- I do love to see a gorgeous hand-quilted quilt at a show. And like you, I am so. not. a. fan. of quilts that have been quilted to within an inch of their life. I have an appreciation of all the skill and time they take, but if I look at a quilt and my eye goes to the elaborate machine quilting ... well, it's not my cup o' tea!


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