Quilt Festival Houston!

George R Brown Convention Center

George R Brown Convention Center

I recently attended the Houston International Quilt Market and Festival. This quilt convention is held annually in the George R Brown Convention Center in Houston, Texas.  With 1.8 million square feet taking up 11 square blocks of downtown Houston, the convention center is a massive, massive, MASSIVE building.  The Quilt Market and Festival utilize the ENTIRE building for two full weeks!  In addition to the market, this is a quilt show that is impressive beyond your wildest expectations, displaying quilts by the best, most creative, most talented and artistic quilters in the world.  This is no exaggeration.

Quilt "Reflections of Capetown" by Cynthia England -- This is a quilt, not a photograph. She has created a reflective image with colored fabric.  It's simply awe-inspiring! 

Quilt "Reflections of Capetown" by Cynthia England -- This is a quilt, not a photograph. She has created a reflective image with colored fabric.  It's simply awe-inspiring! 

New fabrics, new products, celebrity quilters, fabric designers, merchants and shop owners converge in a vibrant and cheerful, energetic scene.  Participants walk row after row of merchandise presented in beautiful booths. All the newest sewing machines, fabrics, and anything and everything related to quilting are available for attendees to see and experience.  After market, the crew switches over from wholesale market to festival where vendors prepare to sell to a thronging crowd. Cheerful customers bring wheelie suitcases to carry out great quantities of exciting new merchandise to make their beautiful quilts.

Quilt using Kaffe Fassett Collective Fabrics at the Free Spirit booth.

Quilt using Kaffe Fassett Collective Fabrics at the Free Spirit booth.

The big fabric houses were there with the latest designs: Free Spirit, Moda and many more.  There were booths with beautiful new quilts, and booths with stunning antique quilts.  There were pretty ribbons, and there were even appliqué shoes! 

Edith Minne of Renaissance Ribbons displays her Kaffe Fassett Collective ribbons.

Edith Minne of Renaissance Ribbons displays her Kaffe Fassett Collective ribbons.

These pretty appliqué shoes came home with me on my feet.  :)

These pretty appliqué shoes came home with me on my feet.  :)

The quilting celebrities were there to autograph their books, and show their gorgeous new designs. The merchants, who share my passion for color and patchwork were there, epitomizing the spirit of the quilting community which is cheerful, creative and supportive.

Pam Holland 

Pam Holland 

I was able to interview two wonderful women: The legendary Pam Holland is a photographer, fine artist and quilter, and Katja Marek is a shop owner and author who has written the blockbuster book, “The New Hexagon: 52 Blocks to English Paper Piece.” I am truly excited to share about them in future articles.

Katja Marek.JPG

Finally, as I have recently realized a dream by opening my own (online) fabric store, I purchased some lovely, inspiring fabrics for Fenwick Fabrics. On this trip, I added fabrics by designer Tula Pink, who is an exciting young designer that really gets the modern design aesthetic. 

Me with Tula Pink!  This young woman is a phenomenal designer. I was very excited to meet her.

Me with Tula Pink!  This young woman is a phenomenal designer. I was very excited to meet her.

In addition, I have also added a new line by Kaffe Fassett called Artisan.  It is a combination of batik, and simple two-color designs versatile enough to be used in quilting, apparel and home decor.   I also am happy to have the new line of Snow Leopard Designs by Philip Jacobs called “Tribal.”

Artisan by Kaffe Fassett

Artisan by Kaffe Fassett

"Bharati" from the Tribal line by Philip Jacobs

"Bharati" from the Tribal line by Philip Jacobs

All of these new lines are available now for pre-order with delivery in March. Please go see what’s new at www.fenwickfabrics.com.

Sue FenwickComment