Paducah Was Fun

And inspiring . . . 

This is my 13th year in a row to attend that show, and I never fail to come back inspired and rarin’ to go. I can hardly wait to get home and get back in my studio once I’ve seen it all, and this year was no different. I was sketching new patterns on the way home!

The oddest thing is . . . I did not take one single photo . . . not one! So instead of any pictures from Paducah, you’ll have to settle for photos of some of the things I bought. And that wasn’t much. 

Fabric? I bought 2 fat quarters and that’s all! I can hardly believe it myself, especially when the back room at Hancock’s had it for $2.98 a yard. I could have gone wild there, but I didn’t. I wandered around, picked up a few pieces, then laid them all back down and walked out. Never have I ever done that before. 

I had plans to buy more books or patterns for longarm quilting, but although I looked at many, I just couldn’t make any firm decisions, and ended up not buying a single book or pattern, either. For those of you who know me, I can see your mouths hanging open right now — and I’m freely admitting that this is very strange for me.

I did not come home empty-handed . . . but this just might be my most self-controlled year of attendance ever. Maybe I’m getting mature in my old age — haha — yeah, right!

I made a list of things I wanted to look for before I left, and I pretty much stuck to it. One thing I have been wanting was this:

The Quilter’s Assistant Proportional Scale. No more guessing and wasting paper at the copy machine. Now I can know exactly how big or small to scale a longarm pattern before copying. Well worth the $6.95 I had to pay for it.

I bought some thread. I’ve only had my longarm a few months, so I’m still experimenting with all different kinds and brands of thread, so I picked up a couple spools to try. The pink is for the baby quilt I’m making out of the Blush collection. It’s an Aurifil 50-weight. The other was recommended by someone I had been wanting to talk to ever since I found out he has a machine like mine and I saw what he could do with it: Dustin Farrell.

I was browsing the Pavilion, walked around the corner, and there he was! No mistaking him, he had the tattoos, the backwards hat, and he was very energetic and friendly. He wondered aloud how I knew who he was — puhleeze! — Dustin — you’ve been featured in more than one magazine article, and My Cowboy was actually IN the Nolting factory the day they were building the skull with red flashing eyes for your longarm! I’m telling you, his machines are custom-pimped — but then, that’s just how the guys at Nolting are –they take good care of their folks — they take good care of me!

Ever since learning about Dustin while he was in the factory that day, My Cowboy has been teasing me that he was going to look Dustin up, and send me to school with him for a day. I’m OK with that — I’d love to learn how he does his quilts and get some good advice, especially from a fellow Nolting user. But this day, thread was what I picked his brain about, and he was very kind and gave me some good advice right there on the spot — thanks, Dustin! So my second thread purchase was from the YLI booth, and I’m real anxious to try out this thread and see how I like it.

I also stopped by just to say hi to my pals at the Nolting booth, and decided to let Steve practice his demoing of the Intelli-Quilter on me. I’m sure it’s the next thing that I’ll think I have to have . . .

I also bought the show catalog, and this is one of the reasons I didn’t feel compelled to take any pictures. The catalog already has them all, and the show gets so crowded that it’s hard to get good shots. If I have the catalog, I don’t have to think about getting pictures. I decided ahead of time that I was going to spend more time than ever studying the quilts. The quilts are all unbelievably amazing, and I think the work gets better every year. I could stand in front of certain ones and just lose all track of time while staring at the details and absorbing all the wonderfulness. I’ve had entries in three previous AQS Shows myself, and I honestly wonder, after looking at this crop of entries, how I was ever lucky enough to be juried in. It does give one something to strive toward. 

Then I came back to reality, got my scissors sharpened, browsed through some embellishments, lusted after some rulers I could probably use with my longarm, visited with some friends I ran into, and bought souvenirs for my QQB pals back at home.

And . . . I also brought home some souvenirs for YOU, my dedicated readers. If you’ve made it this far reading this post, you’ll now find out that I’m having a give-away to distribute the souvenirs I bought. I have two items, and I’m not showing pictures . . . you’ll just have to take your chances and be surprised. So leave a comment below, answering the following question:

If you were to make (or did make) a shopping list to take to Paducah, what one item would have been at the top of your list to buy while you were there?

On Thursday at noon, CST, I’ll draw two winners, who will each receive one of the souvenirs.

Published in: on April 27, 2010 at 7:45 am  Comments (16)  

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16 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Gee that’s a hard question. I really do not know. I love to collect fabric but I also love to collect patterns. When I used to visit my parents in Turkey and go carpet shopping the salesman would always say wait until the carpet “sings to you” as that is the one to buy. So I would wait to see what sings to me…and buy it.

  2. Hmmm…well, we’re pretty isolated out here and I’m a failry new quilter so I haven’t had much exposure to all the quilting world has to offer. I’m thinking I would be quite overwhelmed and walk around in awe…with that deer in the headlights look! With all of that inspiration around me, I would probably come home with something completely out of my comfort zone. So I don’t think I could make a list before I went, but you can bet I would be making a really long one while I was there! I know I wouldn’t have the self control you have though because I would be buying all the things that jumped into my arms just in case I never had the opportunity to buy it again. Gee – sure do hope I’ll have enough money left for the trip home!

  3. Wow! I am proud of you and your fabric purchasing. Lately, I haven’t been in the mood to purchase too much fabric or supplies/notions. I think because I’m renting such a small house right now, it’s problematic, because I have such little space. At the top of my list would be to test drive lots of long-arm machines to help me decide what I’d like to get. You are convincing me I should take a serious look at Nolting. 🙂 I also just broke my 6×24″ ruler, so that would be high on my list, too. Other than that…fabric and fun patterns! Glad you had a great time!

  4. Shoot, at this point in time, I’m not sure. I tend to be a list maker — and generally stick to it — and right now there’s nothing on my list. Shoot I only came home with a single FQ from the vendors at the guild show this past weekend.

  5. It would have to be a mid/long arm. I’ve been contemplating one for a long time, and the only time I was at Paducah, they had every selection and style to choose from. I think that would be on the top of my list. If I remember correctly they usually have show specials, or free shipping etc.

  6. The thing at the top of my list was the Dome Needle Holder by Clover and I bought it! It will hold up to 10 needles prethreaded. Love It!

    • I looked at it, thought about what we discussed about it, then decided I was probably right when I said I’d have all my thread tangled up inside it in a jiffy. I’ll have to watch you use yours for awhile. It may make it onto my list for next year! Thanks for hanging out with me at the show, and letting me hitchhike, and taking me to breakfast!

  7. My list is filling in gaps in my sewing space to make my work easier. Right now that includes a 12 square ruler for trimming blocks. I definitely would have bought some thread for quilting with my domestic machine. I don’t have much choice where I live. That said, I always have a little ‘fabric money’ for something I see, and love, and can’t leave without! Now that I’ve quilted for awhile I know to buy at least 1/2 a yard, if not more, if it’s true love. Hard to find true loves a second time!! Thanks for the chance, Shelly!

  8. Thread I am trying to find the thread I love for piecing. Recent convert from whatever is on hand and easy to find. I have tried Aurifil and Gutermann and am liking the Auriful.

  9. I have the Accucut Go! at the top of my list. I think it’s an amazing new tool for quilters. I am a thread addict! I like having trying out different types and brands of threads. My favorite now is Glide thread. It is excellent for machine quilting in my machine. Thanks for the chance to win a surprise gift!

  10. Well, I didn’t even know about Paducah until this year because I have been quilting in a cave (or something close to it). I think a show catalog to drool over would be a good thing. I have seen color cards for solid fabrics that manufacturers like Kona have. One of those would be nice. And, of course, a HUGE fabric budget so I could really stock up. I used to think I had a large stash, but then I saw some REAL stashes and was both humbled and encouraged. Mine is nothing, and maybe that’s a good thing. But there is room to grow.

  11. I have no idea what I would buy!!! Maybe some books/videos on free motion quilting or some patterns or kits or fabric or needles or thread or …. maybe it is a good idea that I don’t live close enough to go!!!!

  12. A long arm is on the top of my list….just trying to rationalize….

  13. Hmmm. Well, after watching a demo at our guild’s show this weekend, I would have to say the square in a square ruler. I had chair duties that kept me from going back and buying one at the show, but rumor is the LQS carries them as well.

  14. I’m not sure what I would buy. But, I would guess a little bit of everything — a couple books, some patterns, some of the newest fabrics, thread, and then a silly mug or tee shirt to show everyone that I was there.


  15. I’ve mulled this over for an entire day before commenting.
    I have lots of fabric of all types, and I probably have one of every quilting and sewing gadget known to quilters and sewers. I definitely don’t NEED anything else.
    But I think I would buy fabric paint/dye. That’s something I have not tried yet, and I would like to experiment with, and maybe take a few classes.

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