Thursday, March 24, 2011

Lancaster Shopping Show and Tell

So here's what will be keeping me busy for a while :)

Let's start with one of the first things I picked up--I've never come across something like this before.  This is a 16-1/2" batik squre that has been preprinted with the design you see on the package. Sew Batik fabrics sells these. What you do is make yourself a quilt sandwich and then quilt on the lines.

Once you've done all the quilting you selectively paint the parts that aren't quilted with a metallic or high shimmer fabric paint. The result is an amazing artful quilt that you cannot believe is simply a wholecloth with lots of illusion.

 It's amazing, isn't it? Think mine will look anywhere near that good? One piece of cloth...that's it. Pretty cool. If you want to try this yourself, you can pick up the fabric at Pick the pattern and then pick the Sew Batik fabric color. The one above was done on Navy (which they were sold out of at the show)

I only bought 4 colors of paint to start with. This isn't the brand the vendor with the quilt recommended, but one of the other vendors said it would also work.  (Yep, I finally succumbed and bought a little sampler pack of Shiva paintsticks. Suz Zwizzle, Wannabee Art Quilter was along on this shopping trip and refused to stop whining and fussing until I bought some supplies for her. Anyone want to bet on how long it takes her to use them?)

Having done the one Baltimore block...well, okay, we can't technically say 'done', but we can expect that there will be more to follow, I decided that I needed some more traditional prints in my stash for Baltimore applique, and since a Dear Jane is also on my bucket list, a few Civil War prints would be perfect for both of these projects. I go more for the burnt orange/tan/forest/slate blue pallet rather than the traditional red/navy.

It was really hard to not buy twice as many as I did, but I think this little collection will go a long way for me, and it's not like you need to match anything between blocks in Baltimores or Dear Janes, so it's plenty to start with.

My winner for outstanding vendor/star of the show was one that I have never seen at any other show I've attended (the year I went to Houston was the year the date changed to October and this vendor had a conflict, but they do the Houston show every year). Let's say that last Friday I was definitely 'feeling Japanese...I really think so'.

First to grab my attention were the Sashiko patterns. Most interesting was that they were printed on indigo fabric as well as white and some other colors. I went with the traditional white as that's what I've been doing and I may want to display them all together. But I may be bold and use two colors of thread on this one. (though I'll have to have a couple of  sakis to pull off that major act of bucking tradition). They also sold t-shirt kits that had a pattern preprinted on the shirt and included the thread. If you're interested in these, or anything Japanese, they have a website:

This fabric is glorious (and expensive, but I couldn't resist). I love the Japanese fabrics that have a design woven into the cloth as well as the design that is screened on the fabric, and these three one yard cuts met my 'woven' requirement. The funky flowers on the left is the most popular kimono print (according to the seller).

Added bonus was the Japanese printing on the selvage of this one (you can see the woven pattern on this piece pretty well).

Now, this is another fun project, I'm looking forward to. The fabric above is a finished edge cloth called a 'furoshiki' or wrapping cloth. In Japan, these cloths are used like wrapping paper. They're practical, colorful, and reusable, and in the case of many....QUILTABLE! Add some batting, some backing, maybe a border, and quilt around the design and in the open spaces. They had quite a few on display and I fell in love with the finished product. Faux art so right up my alley is that? I picked up this small one for practice, and I'm waiting for a larger, more abstract one to come in (yep, another item sold out by the time I got there.)

A day of quilt show shopping wouldn't be complete without a small assortment of the most recent offering of French prints fresh from Provcence.

And they fit in well with my growing collection of authentic French fabric. Eventually I'll have enough for a project, if I ever get over the horror of  taking a rotary cutter to it. Though I think I need some more greens before I commit this stack to a project.

On our way home from Lancaster, we stopped at the Gettysburg outlets and went into 2 stores. One is a shop that rents out little booths and it's full of little tchotchkes. It's fun to walk through and sometimes you come out with a treasure. I thought the bluebird above would be a happy addition to a shelf in the studio. (It makes me smile every time I look at it). The other shop, Christmas Tree Hill, was practically giving away these miniature pottery birdbaths ($2.49). I snapped one up to use as a place to toss the safety pins I'm removing while quilting.

Of course I also bought silk thread from Superior. It's the best silk thread I've used ...I go back and forth between silk and cotton for hand applique. At the moment I'm using French Broder cotton for my Piece of Cake Aunt Millie's Garden, but silk for the Baltimore. I won some Superior Kimono Silk a few months back, and just used it on the Baltimore disappeared into that fabric like buttah! If you're at a show and Superior's got a booth, most definitely pick up a spool and give it a try. And while you're at it, pick up the 2 color charts so you can order it on line. You're going to want more of it once you have a taste.


  1. I love your little blue bird! And your japan fabrics! And most of your other fabrics... my husband would kill me if I came home with anymore fabrics. :) I try to not come home with more, sometimes it doesn't work out, but mostly it does.

  2. What fun fabrics! Looks like you had a good time at the show. Wonderful Japanese fabrics. Ohhh I would've spent some money for those too.

  3. Just look at all the fun things you purchased. Now that one with painting the fabrics looks so interesting. Love the fabrics!!

  4. Oh what a fun shopping trip! I don't know which I'm more in love with the Japanese fabrics or the CW! :-) I love the whole cloth painted pattern, and sashiko looks like fun.. oh no, I don't need another addiction, er hobby. LOL Have fun!

  5. Wow! You returned home with some wonderful fabrics. I like two of the ideas you covered -- the whole cloth pattern on batik and the iris sashiko. Irises are my bedroom decor inspiration and I've wanted to try sashiko. The sites I've checked do not have anything like this. So, thanks for sharing. I'm off to check some of these links.

  6. Wow what a fantastic haul, especially those wonderful Japanese fabrics. Love the pre-printed sashiko pieces too. Just wanted to let you know my fabric arrived from you today, thank you again, it's wonderful.


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