Thursday, August 02, 2007
Originally uploaded by treasureup
Here is a link to some absolutely fantastic photos of the Sisters, Oregon outdoor quilt show.
Every year this quilt store, the Stitchin Post, holds a truly fantastic quilt show. They hang all the quilts outdoors on various structures, and the effect is just magical.
I first heard about this by listening to Alex Anderson's Quilting Connection podcast. Now, Alex is always talking about how the traditional quilt community wants to get younger people involved. The demographic for quilters skews to the blue hairs and Red Hat Society. And that makes me really sad. Quilting is so enjoyable and rewarding for people of all ages. I'd hate to see it die out with the last of the baby boomers.
There are several reasons to make quilts. First of all, you can purchase and consume large amounts of fabric. And there are lots of wonderful jumping off points out there--tons of patterns which you can take to your own sewing room and turn into real works of art. And in the end you have a one of a kind treasure that no one else can create. A treasure that your grandchildren might actually like to have. Not that they won't want your stuffed owl from the latest indy craft fair. Ermmmm, yeah.
Alex Anderson is a quilting giant, in a manner of speaking, and she truly is trying to reach out there and grab younger quilters. The podcast is a huge step. And she is a fellow Bernina gal, who has the ear of the big bosses at Bernina. And they want to hear from us! Really! Us younger crafters should know that we have some clout, because they want our business. And trust me, we want their support. The indi-crafts crowd might not want a million sewing machine embroidery stitches with country hearts and ribbons, but we do want to use our machines to stitch our own designs which we digitized ourselves. We're not the computer illiterate or intimidated 60 year old set. Most likely, we're kinda geeky. (Self-admission). Hey Bernina!!Please, help us embrace it! I can't write my own software, but you Bernina people have whole development departments for such things!
I'm not trying to put down the traditional quilting or sewing community. After all, I love traditional quilting, all the heart that goes in to them, and I myself love to make very practical quilts, and sometimes--horrors!--pretty much straight from the pattern!! They have a lot of buying power, too, which keeps our quilt stores open. I'm just saying, if you as a consumer can put your money where your heart is, it would be worth your while. You buy independent crafts, right? It may seem crass and capitalistic, but money speaks louder than any felted woodland creature, no matter how much you like your "Winkie the Owl."
p.s. now don't get all offended if you've bought Etsy fresh out of felt owls. To each their own! I have a ridiculous amount of crappy quilt tops from the 70's. Hey, at least your owls don't smell like old aunt Velma's attic!