Quilt Market Newbie!

This past month I was lucky enough to be able to attend Quilt Market for the first time and I’m just now recovering! There was so much to see and do and if you’ve never gone, it’s worth it!

It was held in Salt Lake City, Utah this spring so we were able to drive up. We arrived in Thursday so we could attend Sample Spree that night. Our friend had warned us that it was like Black Friday on steroids-and she wasn’t kidding! For those that don’t know, sample spree is an event where you can shop the new collections from the fabric companies before they arrive later in the year. Luckily for me, I’m incredibly proficient in Black Friday shopping.

Photo May 19, 7 36 53 PM

Our pickings from Sample Spree!

We were exhausted from that event but the next morning we were at our first class on Patents, Trademarks and Copyrights. I’m glad I attended it but I left more confused than I arrived. Soon we were entering the showroom floor!

Photo May 22, 8 04 26 AM

Part of the Quilt Market Show Floor

That photo shows about a quarter of the floor size. It actually took us two days to get through it all! It was incredibly overwhelming for us, being that it was our first time, and we almost gave up and went home Friday afternoon. However, we kept pushing on and I’m so glad that we did! There were some amazing displays there and I didn’t get photos like I wanted to but a few are below that were stunning.

Photo May 22, 11 09 46 AM

Nightfall by Maureen Cracknell at Art Gallery Fabrics

Photo May 22, 8 37 02 AM (1)

Myself and Tula Pink in her booth. She’s always such a joy to talk to!

Photo May 22, 9 25 13 AM

Bari J’s display at Art Gallery Fabrics. Check out the pug pillow!

All the vendors were so helpful when they realized it was our first time. They gave us lots of tips on how to navigate the floor and said that feeling overwhelmed was normal. We had such a great experience there and can’t wait for our next one! Here are a few tips for those newbies that are going:

  1. Get in line early for Sample Spree. The line starts 2-3 hours before and come with a large bag. (My favorite are the blue 99 cent Ikea bags.) Also, have a plan on which vendors you want to hit first. It’s almost a race so make sure you hit what you really want first.
  2. When walking the show floor, be prepared to carry a lot around. Even better, get a small rolling luggage bag. You’ll be collecting a lot of information and freebies and it’ll add up quickly.
  3. Make appointments with your reps before you go. We didn’t know that, and it was fine for our first market since we’re just starting up, but most places you can’t get info without one of those.
  4. Don’t do the entire show in one day. Do half the first day, then take a break for the rest of the day. Get out and see the city, go relax in your room, or go grab some food with friends. You’ll need to decompress after it. Do the next half the next day and, if you stay for the last day, go back to hit those last minute wants.
  5. Have fun! It’s a great time to see all the new collections and meet your favorites.

I’ve got a few ideas for some of the samples that we held onto from the spree so I’ll be posting sneak peeks of those on the blog as they’re sewn. In the meantime, what are you favorite types of fabrics to use? Kona? Grunge? Pure Elements?

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