Thursday, April 19, 2007

Fiberart Postcards ~ Best of Chicago Quilt Festival

Someone please knock a little sense into me if EVER I agree to teach at three back-to-back events again. Just ONE turns me into a zombie; just ONE leaves me a bit crabby, short of memory, emotional. THREE, without a good break between them, is just plain crazy-making. All I want to do, even now – a couple of days after returning home, is to take nap after nap and pet the cat. If my words don’t come out right today, you know the reason…

That said, let me share some photos from the Chicago Quilt Festival with you.

Susan and Phyllis, at the Chicago Quilt Festival, 2007
First, here are my dear bead/quilt friends, Susan and Phyllis, who helped me trudge the 300 mile-long walkways between our hotel and the convention center classrooms, carrying supplies and setting up after we arrived, and assisted as needed during each of my 4 classes and sampler lecture. They met years ago while working at the same quilt shop in TX. Now that Susan moved to CA, they get together once or twice a year to take classes and shop at conferences. I met them three years ago when they took a bead embroidery class from me. Since then, they’ve both been beading and sewing beads on quilts like crazy! This was the first time they changed roles from student to assistant, but underneath both roles, is a wonderful friendship that has developed since first we met. Without their help, I’d probably be in a hospital right now!

We had two brief periods of time to visit the vendors and exhibition area. For once, I mostly avoided the vendors and concentrated on the many fabulous exhibits of quilts. All were fascinating and amazing, but the most compelling to me was a small exhibit of fiber art postcards. They were framed in groups of 9 and behind glass, and thus very difficult to photograph. Here are a few of them:

fiberart postcard by Ann Marie Cowley
This one, untitled by Ann Marie Cowley of Oregon, made my knees weak. The photo totally doesn’t do it justice… soft colors, silky texture… gentle, peaceful, joyous.

fiberart postcard by Inge Reinholdt
This one, “White Bridge” by Inge Reinholdt of Denmark, brought tears to my eyes, the spirituality of it. I tried to take the photo without a flash, but there wasn’t enough light, so you’ll have to ignore the big white splash. Check here to see other of Inge’s fabric postcards. Click to enlarge the ones you like best (well worth it!)

fiberart postcard by Virginia Spiegel
This one, “Tomatoes and Tithonia” by Virginia A. Spiegel, has such a lovely close-up and personal feel to it… a design sense to envy.

fiberart postcard by Anne Dovel
This one, “Prairie Evening” by Anne Dovel, pleases me because of the texture, lines and colors… it feels like a prairie under the spell of sunset.

In the past few years, “Fiberart for a Cause” has donated over $130,000 to the American Cancer Society. The sale of postcards this year contributed over $18,000 to that total.

On the back side of the postcard exhibit was an ATC wall, which constantly changed as people brought their cards to trade for ones already on the wall. Here is a picture showing just a small portion of the wall. I’d say there were 200 or more ATCs on the wall at any given time.

ATC wall at the Chicago Quilt Festival, 2007
I've been thinking of making some ATCs, but after seeing the exhibits of postcards, I'm favoring the larger format (about double the size of ATCs).

In my next post, I’ll show pictures of and talk about the Journal Quilts Project exhibit, which was awesome again this year!

Now it’s time for another nap… z z z Z Z Z Z!


  1. Sooooo glad you're back!

    Sorry you're pooped...but glad you had a good time?

    and, as always, thanks for sharing the wonderful work you find in your travels!

  2. I missed you and I'm so glad you're back home! I think you deserve as many naps as you want after all those back-to-back events. Travel always tires me out. Your friends look so cheerful and happy....I'm sure they were since they got to see you.

    "Tomatoes and Tithonia" and "Prairie Evening" are my favs of the ones you have shown. The colors in both of them are so pretty, and the stitching just adds so much.

    I'll look forward to seeing your fabric postcards. I know they'll be great.

  3. You must so be enjoying your beautiful island home again!
    Thanks for the link to Inge's postcards. She has really explored the possibilities of that format, hasn't she?
    I've always avoided them...afraid that I would never stop if I got started! But I will love seeing what you do...

  4. Anonymous10:27 AM

    Hello, Robin

    I am writing this comment very silently, so to say on tip-toe, in order not to interrupt your snooze. After such strain it can't be easy to regenerate. Thank you for thinking of your readers in spite of the exhaustion, posting lovely photos and delightful texts!

    In many ways you must also have had a good time - meeting old friends, getting to know new people and seeing many beautiful things! And lots of students must have profited from your presence and lectures. I'm sure you will soon be on top of the world again.

    Many blessings,

  5. What beautiful quilts. I like the postcard size quilts. I'm not sure I know what the Journal quilts are all about, but I'm looking at that page again. Tomatoes and Tithonia nearly took my breath aways as it is so provocative to me. Beautiful and provocative both. Sleep dear Robin, Sleep, rest, restore. There you go...ZZZZZZZZZZZZ!

  6. OH WOW! Those are gorgeous! And I love the ATC trading wall. What fun!

    I recently joined an online group called The Fiber Art Traders who do work like that (I just pointed them to this post to ooh and aah as well). My first project was a tea carrier:

    Thank you for sharing such wonderful work!

  7. Anonymous12:41 PM

    Welcome home, Robin. Hope you're feeling better by now (Sunday).

    I was quite upset to learn there had been a bead festival in B'ham. I hadn't heard a breath about it! (Having health issues and don't get out much anymore.) Now I am forwarned and can maybe make plans to attend the next one. I'm so grateful for those who can and do make it to the big festivals and shows and then share their digital pix with the rest of us. Keeps my world from shrinking down to nothing!

    Looking forward to your future posts,

    Sue in MV

  8. Anonymous8:40 PM

    Postcards are wonderful things!!! I joined the Art2Mail group when it spun off from the Quilt Art List e-mail group in 2004. Ann Dovel is part of the group, you can see more of her cards along with cards by the rest of the group at
    I have a collection of over 120 postcards from 3 years of exchanging and just signed up for our next round.

  9. Good to have you back Robin...and i can't wait to hear more about the Journal Quilts Project. But for now,get some rest ;-) Ronda

  10. Hi Robin, I don't get much time to see your site because my old machine is too slow. When I can get to the library, though, I can do it.
    I love looking at your various artworks. Get a good rest. hay nos vamos, cocodrilo!

  11. Sorry, I meant vemos


Thanks you for joining the discussion on this post today!