Last week was one big quilty blur--so much going on. MQS (Machine Quilters Showcase) was held in Kansas City this past week, and I was lucky enough to get to spend a lot of time there. It was exhausting, but oh so much fun. I took some fun classes on digitizing quilt patterns which I hope to put to work very soon. I also was able to volunteer behind the scenes at the show. One of the highlights was working as a scribe on the judging floor (filling out the judges score cards.) It was really interesting to listen to the judges comment on each quilt and see what they liked (and didn't). They were very picky about not seeing starts and stops, backtracking, finished edges, and consistent quilting density throughout the quilt. I gained a great deal of insight from this experience. And the quilts were spectacular. It was really fun to know once the ribbons were awarded, why one quilt was chosen over another.
I also spent several days on the vendor floor where I got to test drive longarm machines. I made the rounds several times and spent time on all the machines. I had really been looking forward to this. It was great to finally get some hands-on experience with each of them, which helped me narrow down my choices. I can now make a more informed decision when the time comes.
And then the actual quilts... WOW! They were really amazing. I took pictures, but they didn't do justice to most of these quilts or quilters. Sorry I didn't get the quilters' names.
The quilters from Texas were also in town to take in the show. When they weren't at MQS, they had a full-blown quilt retreat set up in my dining room. They hit as many quilt stores as they could find and diligently worked on the pile of projects brought by each of them. We had a great time and are already looking forward to next time!