Last weekend, my husband and I went to the AQS show in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He’s really a trooper. Not many of my friends are quilters so he gets to be my BFF on quilt days. He’s a good guy…he likes quilts. He enjoys looking at the quilts and he enjoys going someplace nice for lunch. But he does not like the vendors. I think guys are genetically wired to dislike shopping. Unless it’s for tools. Then they can wander for hours in the hardware store. I try to remember all the shows and shops I’ve drug him through every time I’m with him in Home Depot. But I digress…. Bottom line is he will trudge through aisles and aisles of vendors without complaint. He’s a keeper.
Every quilter who goes to a quilt show would probably agree that visiting the vendors is as much fun as viewing the quilts….particularly at a big, national show. All of the big companies are there and so many of the pattern makers and authors. You can find things that are just not always available at your local shop. And they call your name and they follow you home! I had one item that called to me. It was the kind of thing that seems like a good idea at time…like the Tupperware pickle keeper that I had to have so many years ago. 🙂 This quilting item was appealing but it was pricey so I had to convince myself that I really wanted it. So, I decided to continue shopping and if I really wanted it at the end of the afternoon, I’d get it. Eventually I decided I couldn’t live without it. My reasoning was that either way, I might be sorry….sorry I bought it or sorry I left it there. So, back to the booth I went. Eventually. You see, we forgot where it was. So CubFan and I were once again trudging down the aisles. We finally found the booth and I walked away a happy camper.
So here is the object of my desire…Steady Betty. It is a very unassuming pressing board. I’ve been pressing on a towel on top of my cutting table…which, by the way, is warping my cutting mat. I’ve been looking for a better method. This is it! It’s foam covered and the foam holds your quilt blocks in place while you press them. It eliminates most of the distortion that can occur when you press your blocks. I have no buyer’s remorse with this purchase…unlike the pickle keeper. Check it out here. As I said, it’s a little pricey but I think it’s worth every penny…again, unlike the pickle keeper.
My other major purchase was a product dear to my heart…thread. I think it’s pretty well documented that I love thread. I’ve had this love/hate relationship with King Tut thread. I love it…it’s beautiful…it’s high quality. My machine quilting just doesn’t look pretty when I use it. Part of that is because my machine quilting just doesn’t always look pretty to begin with! 🙂 Out of desperation one day, I tried SoFine 50 weight and my stitches looked so pretty. I think King Tut is just too heavy. I needed to get some SoFine in neutral colors. I talked about going to the Superior Thread booth for a week. I walked right past it and CubFan had to direct me to it. I was like a kid in a candy store! I picked out some colors and some Masterpiece for piecing and a cone thread holder thingy and went to the register. I told CubFan not to come to the register with me. He wouldn’t understand. He doesn’t care…he just doesn’t get it. He once looked at my tackle boxes full of rayon embroidery threads and said “You must have $50 worth of thread in there!” I did not set him straight. If he’s happy believing that, I’m happy letting him. 🙂 I’m pretty sure I worked a couple of days for that thread. But I think it’s going to make a big improvement.
Here is what I’m working on right now. I’m pattern testing for my sister. Her original is made in a more primitive colorway but I decided to try it in “snowy” colors. These are certainly not the norm for me! Here’s a sneak peek!