Birmingham Festival of Quilts 2015 was a good year. A lot more modern fabric this year which was brilliant for the likes of me. My favourite shops were there:
The Eternal Maker – bought the most from here
The Village Haberdashery – I didn't find the stall until the last few hours which was a shame
The Running Chicken – A favourite from last year
Mauds Fabric Finds – A new place I had not heard of. Lovely fabrics
The one shop that is missing from this list is M is for Make. I wish they would come one year as they seem to be my main stomping ground for online shopping at the moment.
It's just a great opportunity to see so much fabric in one place. Hundreds of rulers, notions, charm packs, layer cakes and of course beautiful quilts.
I always like the ones on the actual stalls. Like this Baltimore sample on the Moda Bake Shop stand. I'd love to make something similar one day.
But of course the modern quilts always catch my eye. This quilt on the side of The Eternal Maker caught my eye and reinforced my need for some Alison Glass Handcrafted fabric.
They also had some pretty cool cushions too which were very tempting. I have some gold lamé somewhere...
The negative was that there was not enough seating this year compared to last year. This surprises me as lets face it, there are more walking sticks wobbling about than you can, well, shake a stick at. So it really annoyed me that they had taken seating away this year. Poor mumple, she just wanted to sit in front of the quilts and have little breaks. In the end she had to go upstairs in order to have a sit down. Not ideal.
Out of all the art quilts these big portraits shone out to me. Amazing.
The miniatures were brilliant as always.
But the traditional quilts are always my favourite. It's partly the comfiness. This one looks so well loved. I love the randomness of the fabric choices. I just don't think I would have the guts to be so random.
It's also the sheer skill. Just thinking how long they must have taken to out together and how perfectly all the blocks meet. I mean who has the time? This one basically fried my mind.
And I always enjoy looking at hand quilting. It's just so much more amazing than anything a machine can do. I love it.
It was a good year because right up until a few weeks before the show I thought I was going to basically not be able to buy anything. The maternity fund leftovers were basically nearly all gone. But, I was made redundant. Boo! But they gave me redundancy pay yay! So of course I decided to just blow some cash! Why not? Life has not been kind to me of late so I should just buy fabric right? Right? Er...
Yeah well. I went a bit crazy...
Just loads of stuff!
For a looong time now I have been collecting little bits of what I consider to be Posy gets Cosy fabric for my improv quilt. Mum said the floral one looked like an old nightie! It was £4 a metre on a discount stall. The white fabric I ended ip trawling through lots of stalls trying to remember where I'd seen it. It's perfect. I need to make one bag for all these special bits so that I can see what I have and get going!
It was quite hard using one of my lovely zips on Rachel's birthday bag so I knew that having a few more for future bag projects would be a good thing. They really are lovely zips and now I can chop and change colours.
Mumple bought me this as a birthday present. I wanted it last year but they didn't have it at the show. I ummed and ahhed over it as I had resigned myself not to make it, but the great thing about owning a pattern is that you can always change your mind later, but without the pattern it's often lost to you.
After seeing it hanging up again I changed my mind. I have no strong urge to make it anytime soon though.
The pattern itself though is wonderfully clear. I love how it shows you photos of the finished blocks. Just what I need. I fins it really helps with making the fabric choices.
And the diagram pages were wonderfully clear. An allround good purchase! I am sad I missed out on the pattern she had in Quiltmania though. Maybe another one I need to search out for the backburner. For something called 'My Small World' though, it seems like not so small a project.
Staples. I love Best Press, mine is nearly all gone from last year. The needles are like the don of all needles. They are so sharp! They slice like butter. I am always losing them. And the sheeting, well that's now my third bundle and I was tempted to buy two! It's just such great stuff and a bargain at £3.50. One day I will go to the actual mill as it is only half an hour away from my inlaws. I just need to sell it to the other members of the family as an exciting day out!
This was my own bizarre purchase really. I just it for £2.50 a metre. I mean £2.50! I really have no idea what to do with it.
Herein lies a tale of being organised. Mumple is buying me The Farmers Wife book for my birthday. At the show I saw that Fat Quarter Shop are going to do a big quilt a long with the book starting at the end of September just after my birthday! So I decided it was a sign. I too shall do the quilt a long! So I looked in the book on display and saw that the blocks were all 6 inches so I bought a 6" square so I could trim them all to size. I didn't NEED one. I mean you can just use a ruler. Mumple just uses two rulers really. Why would I bother buying a fancy expensive square. Well it is neon plastic...
Turns out they are doing the quilt a long with a DIFFERENT book AND the blocks are 6" finished so 6 1/2" unfinished so the square is nigh on useless! Boooooooo. Less haste next time.
Here are my bargains. Big ones at the top were £1.50 each from The Shuttle and are the same lovely quality as last year. And the Doughty's haul was just as cheap £1.25! Now that's an excellent price for a fat quarter.
And there you have it. There were a few more fat quarters I bought for the Medallion quilt but I'll post them a bit later in another post. Birmingham done.