Saturday, October 10, 2009

Schoolhouse Series and Sample Spree - HOUSTON

It is the day before the Quilt Market opens, and today was filled with the Schoolhouse Series and Sample Spree. The Schoolhouse series was created by Marti and Richard Michell and occurs before every Quilt Market. There are 244 different classes offered which cover a wide range of topics. The emphasis is on introducing new product or techniques to shop owners with the aim of providing educational communication between suppliers and retailers. There are a total of 15 sessions - 11 which last for 30 minutes and 4 which last for 15 minutes, each session you have the option of about 16 different classes. It is an extremely informative event and you need to have a pen and paper at the ready. At the end of each session everyone runs out into the hallway rushing to get to their next selected session. During Schoolhouse I had the opportunity to see a presentation and new collections from designers including Kaffe Fassett, Alex Anderson, Lonni Rossi and Gloria Leonard Hall. Gloria is a new designer for Andover Fabrics and her collection Feed sack Melody originated from authentic Feed sacks. Gloria has an amazing knowledge on fee sacks and showed many samples of the original feed sacks that inspired this fabric collection.
Harriett Hargrave's session with CT publishing was on her new book which was co-written with her daughter Carrie called Quilter's Academy Volume 1 - Freshman Year. It is a new book about to be released designed for beginner quilters. This must-have course guides you step by step through the basics of quilt making, from setting up your sewing space to binding and finishing your first quilt. There will be 6 books in this series.
There were many other sessions that I attended, too many to write about but I did see some new products which will be in the store so stay tuned!

Pictures above: Kaffe Fasset with one of his new quilts and Alex Andersen with a bag made from her new fabric collection.

Gloria Leonard Hall new designer for Andover Fabrics (left) and Inside one of the session - Lonni Rossi from Andover Fabrics

(Above) Harriett Hargrave with Quilters Academy Volume 1 - Freshman Year


Tonight was Sample spree. What is sample spree? It is pretty much what it says, it is the opportunity for shop owners to purchase samples of products e.g fabric, notions, patterns and so on from some of the wholesalers. Many of the fabrics are samples from ranges that will not be in the shops for several months. The samples gives us the opportunity to create samples, design quilts prior to ordering and receiving the ranges of fabrics. The event starts at 8pm and lasts for 2 hours. Some people start to line up at 3pm, I was not one of these people. However about 30 minutes prior to the doors opening the lines are starting to get longer and longer. Here are some photos of the line up to the ballroom where sample spree was being held and then inside the ballroom. Notice all the bags everyone is carrying, everyone staggers out with several very heavy bags.

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