Here's What I Know

Not much!!! But I do know a few things I want to tell you about. For one thing, the MQX West quilt show is coming up in October in Portland. It's one of my favorite quilt shows. For one thing, the machine quilting is absolutely amazing. Here's an example from last year's show:

You might think that it would be discouraging to see such beautiful machine quilting, but in fact, it isn't.  It's very inspiring and gives me lots of ideas for things I would like to try.  And so why am I bringing this up? Because I received an interesting email from the MQX folks the other day about something going on in the world of quilt shows that I was unaware of.  It seems that:

"A large quilt show organization is currently in the process of adding ten large shows to an already cramped US quilt show schedule. Vendors are concerned because they can only be in so many places and most cannot afford to have multiple teams spread around the country. In addition, quilt shows that all look the same create little incentive for attendees to attend more than one.The bigger question is, what will happen with the smaller shows? There are only so many ways to slice the quilt show pie. It is believed that the overall impact (and maybe the goal) will be the demise of smaller shows that do not cater to a niche market."

Well, I don't know about you, but I found that rather alarming since some of my favorite shows are of the smaller variety on the local level.  Knowing this means that in the future, I'll be more interested in the origin and sponsorship of a show before making plans to attend.  I thought you would want to know too.

And here's something else I know:  I dropped off the You are My Sunshine quilt at the Oregon State Fair yesterday.

The only other quilt show I've ever entered was the first International Quilt Festival of Ireland. For that show, I boxed up my quilt and mailed it off. Not the most confidence-inspiring way to enter a show, but I mail lots of quilts off to all corners of the world, and so it wasn't a new experience. Yesterday, I handed my precious quilt over to a teen aged boy who gave me a raffle-type claim ticket in exchange. I only made him tug at the quilt a few times before actually releasing it into his hands. (Whimper.) Hopefully, it will come back to me. I'm trusting the quilt gods on this, and I hope I'm not disappointed.

And here's another thing I learned recently about security at the fair from one of our local quilt shops, The Cotton Patch:

"I did get a chance to see the locked area where the quilts will be and it is very secure.  There is also Oregon State Police on the premises, and new security cameras have been installed in the Jackman Long building [where the quilts will be displayed].  In addition, there is a private security firm at the Fair this year as well.  Along with new intake and outtake procedures,  I feel that the Fair staff have taken very seriously the need for securing not only the quilts but all of the exhibits."

I've learned a few things other things about the Oregon State Fair since I decided to enter my quilt. As I've said before, it would be so cool to win something, but I'm not going to be crestfallen if I don't. And since saying that, I've learned that there are only three ribbons given out (I'm assuming in each category?): Judge's Choice, People's Choice and Best of Show. 
When I saw that, I pretty much wrote off any possibility of receiving one of them, but then, that's not the reason I entered. I entered because of the challenge, and because it will be fun to see my own quilt hanging among the other entries.

As for the other entries, I've learned that there are 192 quilts entered. A pretty solid showing! Now I'm excited to see what other folks have entered. As I dropped off my quilt, I noticed people were entering canned goods as well.

Shoot! I could have entered some canned goods! Good grief. You'd think I'd never been to a fair. The idea never even occurred to me. Next year I will. See what happens when your bloggy friends offer up a little bit of encouragement? It goes to your head completely, and you start entering everything you can get your hands on. (Now, where is Smitty?)

So that's about all I know this morning. Until I learn something else, I'll be walking around with an empty head. Speaking of Smitty, he's waiting very impatiently for me to go outside with him. We need to water the pots, harvest some more tomatoes, and feed the birds. We had to stop feeding the birds for a while until we could move the bird feeder. It seems someone is a little too quick to jump out from under one of the nearby rhodies and snatch a bird on the way by. We decided it was time to stop offering up birds as bait and move the bird feeders to a more remote location. I don't know who is doing such a thing. Smitty says Uno is the culprit. Hm. I haven't noticed Uno in the house, but I have found more than few piles of feathers missing their associated bird. Hopefully, that will stop. Either that, or we'll have to stop feeding the birds.

After that, I'll be making a quilt sandwich and getting on with quilting the True Hope quilt. I hope you have a terrific Tuesday.

15 comments from clever and witty friends:

quiltzyx said...

At SCCQG (So. Calif. Council of Quilt Guilds), we've discussed this same worry for several years now. It's one of the reasons my guild had switched which years we would have our shows, from even-numbered to odd-numbered, so that we wouldn't be in competition with as many other guild shows. I don't think that guild/smaller quilt shows generally have the same vendors as the big shows, so as long as we get the volunteers to chair the shows, we'll still have guild shows. (Except my guild is skipping next year due to that volunteer part. Grrrr.)

It's good to know that they have good security. I hate hearing about stolen quilts!

I'm envying all those fair-goers who will get to enjoy seeing YOUR quilt in person soon!!!! You will be getting lots of oohs & aaahs, at the very least. :^)
And yes, you should enter some of your canned goods next time. Although, that will mean that you will have one jar less in the pantry.... The LA County Fair does baked goods too. One of my friends, Ann Turley, who is also a quilter & quilt teacher/speaker, has entered & won for her food entries there.

Teresa in Music City said...

It's good to hear that Oregon is taking measures to protect their entered quilts. Quite a few of us here in TN have stopped entering quilts in the State Fair because we felt our quilts were not safe. One year I even moved one of my small applique quilts myself to a more secure location behind the ropes! I'm sure your quilt will be taken good care of and returned to you in pristine condition :*) And yes, you definitely need to enter some of your canned goods!!! Next year, I hope to enter some of my knitted items in our County Fair - which is much better protected, believe it or not.

We have never been able to feed the birds at our house because of Gypsy. She is a great huntress even at her advanced age, and my heart always breaks when she gets one. I wonder if it was a momma with babies somewhere.... okay, changing subject now!!!!

On a happier note, I see no reason why your quilt could not win one of those ribbons! It gets my vote for People's Choice :*)

Lyndsey said...

Here in the UK we don't have as many quilt shows. There is the big Festival of Quilts each year which has just taken place in Birmingham and there is always a lot of quilts at the Stitching and Knitting exhibition. That takes place once a year but is shown in 3 venues. There are others but I don't think we have reached the same problem here yet.

You should enter your canned goods next year. I'm sure you'd do well. You are really making me excited about your show and maybe entering something in a show local to us next year.

BillieBee (billiemick) said...

I know something!!! That your quilt is so adorable and it should win any contest. Fingers crossed in Texas.

Marei said...

When I saw your title I thought "Oh...I'd better get comfortable in my chair and grab a beverage because Barbara knows a LOT and I'm going to be here for a looonnngg time." Hmm....rather short post there, girl. LOL! :)

Listen the deal with vendors is a real concern for those of us in small guilds. My guild puts on a show every other year and 6 years ago when I was show chairman I told the guild that we needed to have a real discussion and vote to decide if we were going to put on a show due to only a couple vendors reserving spots. We ended up cancelling. And then THIS year we have just had to do the same thing. Admittedly we go to shows to see the quilts, but in small locales, the vendors are a huge draw. Not many vendors? Not many attendees. Or worse....the people come and then bad-mouth the show which in turn makes it very hard to put a successful show in in subsequent years. Since the "show" is THE money maker for most guilds, not having one makes the viability of the guild tenuous.

And that's all I know. Seems to be even less than you. OMG...I hope there isn't a pop quiz associated with this. I'm not ready! The dog ate my notes, and homework, and 2nd half of my sandwich, and what happened to my cookies???

SoozeM said...

I will have my fingers crossed for your quilt, but I am sure that it will be fine!!

I couldn't possibly imagine sweet innocent little Smitty grabbing birds, so it definitely must be Uno!

SoozeM said...

Oh I almost forgot!!

What do you call a mouse (or in this case a bird!) wearing rollerskates?

Meals on wheels :)

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

Good luck to you in the show, it's a really cute quilt! We have the same cat/bird problem but it's the birds putting themselves in danger. They land right next to the cat dish on the porch when the cats are eating! It doesn't always end well for the bird.

Dana Gaffney said...

My mind is whirling with probably really unpopular ideas about that email you received so I'll keep them to myself. We don't have any quilt shows here, there's one every other year that is about two to three hours away, someday.

Diane Wild said...

Good luck on the state fair. I'm too much of a coward to take mine. But, I am considering the state quilt show only if I can send it by mail. Minnie always scouts the area under my big windows for bird bodies. I have put sticky notes on my windows to cut down on bird strikes. It works and makes a wonderful decorating statement (wink-wink).

Nancy said...

You could always put a bell on Smitty; that way the birds have advanced warning! Of course, the one time I did that with one of our cats, she refused to even go outside! We have cats and bird feeders, but have so many mice and voles that the cats seem to prefer so they leave the birds alone.

Anonymous said...

Around here (S.E.MN) there aren't that many shows that competition or shopper "fatigue" would be an issue. There seem to be adequate vendors/shops willing to step forward for the available spaces. Will be posting about our upcoming show Oct. 4/5. That is one disturbing e-mail, though.
Our local county fair is in a pretty relaxed space for security and I have often wondered/expressed concern for the entries. Great post!!!!!

Michele said...

I read that post to from MQX and I'm so excited to be going to MQX East next spring. Good luck with the show. I'm sure all of the quilts will be fabulous to see. I just might have to look into entering into some of the county fairs in this area next year.

Kate said...

Good luck with with the fair entry.

Since Oklahoma doesn't have a large population center compared to the east or west coasts, we don't have any of those large shows here. The biggest and closest is the International Quilt show in Houston.

Kate said...

Good luck with with the fair entry.

Since Oklahoma doesn't have a large population center compared to the east or west coasts, we don't have any of those large shows here. The biggest and closest is the International Quilt show in Houston.