Shopping, chatting and viewing at Houston

The Houston International Quilt Festival closed today at 5pm.  I can’t believe what I packed into the day today!

As of the end of yesterday, I had seen a few of the quilt displays and most of the big award-winning quilts. Today I vowed to “do” the vendors, and, if there was still time, go back and see the rest of the quilts.  The show opened at 11am and closed at 5.  Six hours to do so much.

John and I arrived at 10 am and took advantage of the extra hour to explore the newly completed park across the street from the George Brown Convention Center.  There was a wonderful art installation, consisting of a number of globes, each decorated by a different artist who chose an aspect of “Green” – as in earth-friendly –  to feature in their work.  Many other cities have decorated bears, cows, buffalo, etc. (Victoria has had both orca whales and soaring eagles), but, so far as I know, no-one has selected the earth as its focus.  They were wonderful.  I loved the wind power globes, and the recycling globe.  Here’s a picture of John amid one row of them.

John with Globes (the convention center is behind)

John with Globes (the convention center is behind)

The show will be there until the 31st of December, if you go to Houston. Here’s one of the recycling globes.

Recycling carpet and wood

Recycling carpet and wood

I found some interesting things at Festival this year in the vendors’ area:

 A magnetic quilt holder that leaves no marks on the wall ( 

A new book by Gyleen Fitzgerald called “Quilts – Unfinished Stories with New Endings” (

A magnifying glass for my sewing machine (so I can do some of that micro-stippling that seems to be on all the prize-winning quilts!).

A little ruler that will draw perfect Mariners’ Compasses (

Some Aurifil thread in shades of grey (that’s all I’m using these days for piecing and applique). 

I got the chance to talk with Marti Michell about little double wedding ring blocks (most of the ones I’ve seen are drafted at 12 inches). I spoke with Alex Anderson’s husband, John, about the Alex and Ricky show. I hung out with Morna Golletz at the Professional Quilter booth for a bit. And I saw Hollis Chatelain at her booth (with three of her magnificent quilts) promoting her upcoming travelling show: Imagine Hope.  I also got to see my friend Daphne Greig (  from Victoria.  She was there teaching, and she said she had a great time!

I finally got back to the quilts, and found an Australian quilter, with a ribbon on her quilt.  Ruth Bloomfield saw us sing in Toowoomba QLD several years ago, and was as proud as punch standing beside her great quilt.  It’s a jigsaw puzzle, not quite complete.  I used to love jigsaw puzzles, and fell in love with her quilt. I love the pieces at the bottom that haven’t yet been placed in the picture!

Me with Ruth Bloomfield in front of "Puzzled"

Me with Ruth Bloomfield in front of "Puzzled"

Another Aussie, Jocelyne Leath from WA won a blue ribbon for her “Royal Flying Doctor Service”, which was magnificent too. There were some Canadian ribbons as well, I’m happy to say!

By the end of the day, I had finally reached the far end of the conference centre. That’s where the Project Linus ( had their tables. We sang for their coordinators’ conference in June 2008 in Bloomington IL, and they had just had their Linus mascot delivered (unpainted).  I was delighted to see that they had painted him up, and now he looks as real as life, and twice as large!

My new friend. Nice blanket.

My new friend. Nice blanket.

So. It’s over. Another year of quilt festival.  It was great to be there as an audience this year – we didn’t have the long days in the booth, trying to see people and quilts while taking care of our own business.  It was far less exhausting and much more fun.

From here we go back north to Fort Worth.  We sing for the Fort Worth Quilt Guild on Tuesday night in White Settlement.  It’ll be the last show for a while in Texas.  I’ve already been saying “y’all” from the stage!  I’m going to have to learn how to talk Canadyun again!

One Response to “Shopping, chatting and viewing at Houston”

  1. Ruth Bloomfield Says:

    Thank you Cathy…. Sorry I missed you when we visited the quilt sale organized by the Victorian Quilters Guild in Victoria B.C.
    Had a great time there.

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