Tuesday, October 25, 2011

What I saw at the CreativFestival

The CreativFestival is a show of vendors from near and far who come together twice a year to showcase their goodies. All the sewing machine vendors were there which makes this show an excellent place for people to search out a new sewing machine. You can run from booth to booth to give the different kinds a test drive.

There is knitting, scrapbooking (although we saw a marked decrease in the number of scrapbook vendors), crystals, beading, fashion and of course my favourite - QUILTING.  The same way you can check out the various sewing machine dealers - this is an EXCELLENT way to check out quilt stores that you may not have seen before.

In the fall, the show is held at the convention centre down town (5 minutes off the highway!) and in the spring, it is held in another convention centre near the airport. So many people say they prefer the airport location - probably because they don't have to pay for parking.

But when you think about it - if you do not attend this show, but would prefer to drive from one store to another to check them out - how much money did you just spend in gas??????   Just goes to show you how flawed most people's logic is!!!!!    Like the customer who came into our booth - asked for the TOOTHBRUSH thing with the hole at the end that is used for rugs. Ah - that would be Aunt Philly's toothbrush needle used to make rag rugs. How much is that thing she asks????   $3.98!!!   What!!!! She says - I can make one for much cheaper!!   and literally STOMPED out of the booth.   OK lady - think about it - where are you going to find a $3.98 toothbrush these days (with a hole in the handle no less) and then you have to cut it down and file the end smooth. Never ceases to amaze me how ILLOGICAL people are.

Like the customer who was AMAZED that she had to pay tax on items she had purchased. Sunday AM - the assistant show manager comes to our booth to tell us that a customer was outside in the lounge and was very upset that she had been overcharged by us. George went out to investigate and then this woman was escorted back to our booth. I helped her run through the list of items she had purchased. The last one was the TAX. Well, she exclaimed -  ALL the other vendors INCLUDE the tax in their prices. WAIT A MINUTE!!!!!!   I asked her if she was Canadian. Yes she was. Anyway - she attempted to get out of paying the taxes and we politely told her that she HAD to pay the taxes. Bottom line though and I could kick myself - she should have been escorted back out of the show, but I watched her turn and head into the show and HAD NOT paid to come back in. Go figure!!!!!

When you work a booth - you do not get a lot of time to get out and investigate the other booths. And it is the most eye popping ones (or old favourites) that usually get my attention. I really would like to have a better peek at some of the others but that is probably a good thing that I don't. too much temptation.

I thought I would share some of my favourite booths with you!  Here they are IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER.......................

Pastime Pieces
 I have seen Marlene at MANY local shows as well as the CreativFestival. I love the patterns she brings in - Crabapple Hill, Don't Look Now are a few of my favourite designers. I always seem to find something new in her booth that ends up in my shopping basket. Check it out for yourself - Pastime Pieces

Border Creek Station

Sherri is a local designer and has some amazing designs. Lots of intriguing stuff here. But more important, Sherri is the creator of the Border Creek Station MYSTERY quilt. I am currently working on my THIRD mystery from her. It is an AMAZING deal ($20) - the pattern instructions are so well laid out, colour coded and very reasonably priced. I have decided to make TWO quilts this time - both the lap quilt and the quaintly queen. Do you remember my fabrics for the lap????

Lap quilt fabric
Now I have been struggling with the fabric choice for the colours for the quaintly queen. Sherri used fabrics from the Etchings line by 3 Sisters/Moda. I managed to snag the charm pack at the CreativFestival - remember the charm pack????

Etchings charm pack - that orange is actually PINK.
Well after some consultation with Sherri (I did NOT want to choose the same three fabrics that she choose), we came up with this combination.......

Quaintly queen fabric combination

I am not 100% convinced this is where I want to go. I LOVE the two on the left. And I LOVE the fabric on the right. I am just not convinced that they will go together. There is NO gray in that middle fabric. Why the gray is here and not a nice sage green beats me. I am not sure how fabric lines get put together and how they choose the colours, but there doesn't seem to be a nice bridge between the red and gray. Now why would they not put in a bridge fabric?????

More of Etchings fabric line - see there are reds, there are reds/greens, but NO red/gray

Well my personal quilt fabric match maker (Marian) is back home and we will be on the hunt to find something. We must move quickly since the clues have started.

Anyway - I would strongly suggest that you find a store near you that carries the Border Creek Mystery. They are one of the best as far as mysteries go!  Border Creek Station

Homestead Stitches
 I mentioned this store the other day. They are an online store and sell wool and wool kits, as well as flannel. I do love the look and feel of the wool. And because most of the work is done by hand - they are great carry along projects. They carry a lot of Primitive Gatherings patterns and kits, as well as Valdani thread (pearl cotton) that is to die for!!!

Check out their store  - Homestead Stitches

Mad About Patchwork

OK - so this store is COMPLETELY different from the previous one!!  How does one appreciate the wools AND the solid brights????   Only a crazy person I suppose. Anyway, Mad About Patchwork has a great selection of the Kona Solids and other bright prints. And while I was VERY leery at the beginning of the solids, I have grown to like them. They have kits made up that go with the book City Quilts - a great book if you are not familiar with it.

The Book - City Quilts by Cherri House

A couple of months ago - I purchased a shade card of all the Kona Solids from Mad About Patchwork.

Shade Cards for Kona solids
I mean - how can you NOT love all those colours!!!!   I overhead a couple of ladies say something about NEVER using solids. But if you use ONLY solids - it is a great place to showcase a design and the quilting. A LOT to be said for solids!!!  Anyway - you can check them out for yourself - Mad About Patchwork

The Quilt Patch - Moose Jaw - quilts from their NEW BOOK

The Quilt Patch - Moose Jaw

This was a BIG booth - hence TWO pictures. Again a totally different feel in this booth from most. And if you look closely (well you can't see from the picture), you realize that ALL THE PATTERNS in the store are designed by the owners!!!   How cool is that!   The patterns are simple yet there is a very homey, comfy feeling about them that just makes you want to make them ALL!!!!!!  Oh dear - I feel a BIG case of that delusional doability again!!!!

Not only have Jeanne and Shelley designed a ton of patterns, but they are also authors of not one, but TWO books. The second one was just released and the quilts in the first picture are from the new book. I am sure you have seen the first book -

Tis the Season 
 If you have NOT checked out this book - you should. There are some gorgeous ideas for Christmas quilts, pillows and other things. I JUST LOVE the book.

Their second book has a different feel to it. First - it is NOT Christmas. It has some amazing projects in it as well. I want to make them ALL!!!!!!!  You should see this on quilt store shelves NOW.

Urban Country Quilts

Something else I love about this store is their MYSTERY quilt. Yep - they also do a mystery quilt once a year. It has just started. And it is a GREAT deal. You pay $59.95 (fabric and shipping in Canada!!!) (don't forget there is TAX on that as well) and you get this yummy package in the mail.

The Quilt Patch - Mystery quilt package!!!!

The Quilt Patch Mystery Quilt instructions!
The mystery has JUST started and it is NOT too late to get started. Once you receive the initial package - you will receive additional instructions over the next couple of weeks. I have forgotten how big this quilt is supposed to be, but once you are done this part - there is a finishing kit that you can purchase to make it larger should you choose. Anyway - their mysteries are awesome as well - great instructions, no worries about fabric choices and ALWAYS CUTE CUTE CUTE and appealing. This is another one of those mysteries that I would do with no questions asked!!
Check them out - and ask about the mystery - it is NOT too late to join up!!!
The Quilt Patch

The Quilting Bee (the girls were having their coffee BEFORE the crowds descended upon them!)

My last store is The Quilting Bee in Fonthill. Whenever I am down in that area - I always stop to see what they have been up to. This is where I purchased my Cosmo embroidery floss. And I desperately need GREEN. They did not bring the thread to the show so I guess that means I have to go to them!!!   For those of you familiar with this store - they will be moving (November 1)- WAIT - they are just moving to the back of the same building!  And a grand re-opening on November 26. There will be specials, demos, door prizes, refreshments and much more!

This store has some great kits put together - not that I need another kit!!!  But I was saved this time because when I went back with money - the kits I wanted were gone!!!  They have a great selection of fabric, patterns and always great samples in the store. Anyway - you can check them out for yourself at this site:
The Quilting Bee

There were other quilt stores and knitting stores and others that I could have spent money at, but these were my favourites!!

If ever you are looking for an unusual gadget, tool or items for heirloom sewing - check out Alma's site. This is the booth where I help out. She also has a great selection of Valdani floss, thread and perle cotton and MANY MANY MANY other things.

Sew Fancy

And if you have ever wondered what happens BEHIND the scenes at the CreativFestival once the doors shut - take a look at this. I snapped these pictures over the couple of hours it took us to dissemble the booth.

There were five of us this time and it went very smoothly. The only problem is that traffic was very bad around the area and it took a while to get the vehicles into the loading docks but once that happened - we went fast and were out of there in no time.

We have LOTS of little things!!!

Carpet gone on the left - notice the start of the buckets on the left

More buckets filled - carpet rolled on the right (the convention guys do that!)

LOTS of buckets

MORE buckets

Our neighbours - GONE!   They had a small booth!!!

We now have carts to move our stuff

Getting close!

Not much left

Roll up those carpets (those belong to Sew Fancy)

One last load

Done BEFORE they came to take down the curtains!!!  Yeah!!!!!!

That is the WORST job in the world. No - let me think about that. Sorting through all those buckets afterwards is probably the worst job!!!  Thank goodness I do not have to do that.

Anyway we all went out for dinner  -  a LATE dinner and on the way I snapped this picture. I was so focused   on the changing lights - I didn't see the others start to cross the street!!!   They told me I needed to be tethered onto a rope like in kindergarten!!!

CN Tower at night. The lights are beautiful on it

And before I sign off - in case you are wondering what that toothbrush THING looks like - here is a picture.......

Aunt Philly's Toothbrush Tool
And what do you make with it - why a toothbrush rug of course......

Aunt Phillys   - check it out - there is a video there to explain how to do it. OK - I am going to get mine out and get that rug done!!!!

There you have it - loads of information for you to digest.

Oh yes - went for physio on my knee/hamstring yesterday. She went DEEP because I woke up in the middle of the night - needed pain killers and ice. Holy cow - it hurts. They recommend an MRI because they don't think it is healing properly and want to see what is actually happening. So off to the doctor this week to get the paperwork in place for that.

Have a great day!!!!!


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