Friday, September 25, 2015

Friday, 25 SEP 2015 :: My FIRST Quilting Expo

Yesterday I went to my first quilting expo. 

It is held locally every year, that I know of.  This year is was a three day span - Thursday through Saturday - at the Portland Expo Center.  I added links at the bottom of this post so you can explore the event.

I was only able to afford a one day ticket, which was $10 (the 3-day ticket was $27).  It was hard to decide whether to go on the opening day or the weekend day, but I finally decided to go on the opening day, which was yesterday.  They are generally open 9am to 5pm on all three days.

I didn't really know what to expect.  I knew there was going to be a display of quilts, vendors, and classes somewhere.  I hadn't even been to the Expo location before.  I had only seen it once before, many years ago, when I explored the MAX transit line that it is at the end of.

The best part for me was discovering some of the amazing quilt design, the ones that really stood out from the crowd.  It helped me to see that any designs I might want to create would be OK, that quilting isn't just about geometric shapes anymore, and that the computer really has changed our ability to create art on fabric. I'm not sure what directions I want to go in with fabrics, but I thought it was a really great experience to see some of the talent that is out there.

I also looked at the vendor spaces as I walked through each aisle.  I was trying to find out what quilters use and see if any of their tools would be good for other things I am working on. I found a small bundle of Insul-Bright to try, some small portions of beads to add to my supplies, and an iron-on sparkly thing with two red hearts...  I'm not sure what I want to do with that last one.

My most difficult financial mistake was not taking lunch with me.  I was really hungry and tired and didn't want to leave early, so I wound up spending $8 for a large baked potato with chili, cheese, bacon, sour cream, and then butter at the end when there was only potato left!  :-)  It was great to eat, but a lot to eat, too....and I didn't want to waste any of my food or money by throwing half of it away, so I managed to eat the entire portion. It was an expensive lesson for me, but that is how we figure these things out.

I discovered some prices on different types of sewing machines that would be nice to own.  The computerized models I was shown went from $5K to $15K, depending on what you wanted on them.  In order to make my own designs, the high-end model was ideal.  I think applique will have to do for awhile!

I recently discovered that my iron didn't work so a new one was on my list.  I discovered the fancy ones they have on TV craft shows are in the $200 range.  (Later on that day I purchase the least expensive one at a department store for $7.99...with a one year warrantee.  --  Maybe I can save up $200 for the high-end model before my new one wears out... or next year's show.  :-)

If I stay in the Portland area, I will try to enter a quilt for the exhibition.  Maybe ten years ago, or less, I began discovering the County Fair competitions and planned to continue submitting entries there, but this county doesn't seem to have a County Fair, so I was looking for alternatives.  This quilting exhibition will be perfect.  I am finding there are a lot of different quilting events, so I will have to find out the best ones to enter.

There were small and large quilts at the event.  I like small, so that will be fine for me.

I keep saying :  If I live long enough, I will be able to....   This is the same issue for me... as long as I am able to, I will keep on going in these directions  ( crafts, Etsy, other online and local sales options, and more...).   We'll have to see what GOD has planned for me.   :-)

Enjoy your weekend.  I hope to write more often in the future.  I'm just beginning to get my crafts going.  The photos are my biggest problem, but that will work out in time.


The event planners / hosts ::
NW Quilting Expo  --

A great place to see photos of this year's quilts, etc. ::
NW Quilting Expo Facebook page (for photos)  --

The event location ::
Portland Expo Center  --

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