Wednesday, February 26, 2020

TexFestDos and QuiltCon

The Magpies flocked together in Texas last week for our biennial in-person meet up (called TexFestDos because we had TexFest in 2016).  QuiltCon was in Austin. Our hostesses live in San Marcos and New Braunfels. They provided both quilty inspiration and hospitality.

Most of us arrived on Wednesday, either to San Antonio or Austin (that was Anna and me).

Carla and Gary's ca. 1900 farmhouse southeast of San Marcos was our central meeting place.

There were 16 of us from Maine, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Illinois (two), Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, California, British Columbia, and Texas (five). Two friends from Colorado and Texas came and one husband (plus the hostesses' husbands).

Most of us stayed at a hotel just a mile away. (Several had rental cars (including me) so transportation was easy.)

On Thursday we all went to the Austin Convention Center for QuiltCon.  There was inspiration and artistry in abundance!

I met two friends:  Karen (KaHolly) recognized me at the ticket booth.  Dale is a librarian and quilter who lives north of Austin.

Modern quilts have evolved from the large block / minimalist / mostly solids of just a few years ago.

 [Upper left is by Victoria Findlay Wolfe, part of an entire retrospective exhibit of her work.]

I have the details for each of these if you want to know more about them.

To qualify for the charity quilts exhibit the quilts had to be made by a group, feature words, and use only black, white, and gray.

The antique/vintage Amish quilts are from the Esprit Collection.

We indulged in retail therapy at the many vendors and had time for a group photo.

Friday was a free day.  I drove back to Austin not to revisit the show but to have lunch with long-time friends, both librarians, who live in Austin. (Pat has retired and Laurie is almost-retired.)  It was lovely to catch up. 

Saturday was busy!  We began with a FaceTime call.  Australian Magpies Terri and Gilly were in London and British Magpie Caroline came down from Sheffield to meet them.   We also called Canadians Lynne in Toronto and Diane in Victoria, BC.

We got into various cars and headed for San Antonio.  First stop:  Las Colchas, a charming quilt shop just north of downtown.  How do they pack so much fabric into that little yellow house?

A "suspicious package" at the Alamo meant it was closed to tourists until the police declared it cleared.  Instead we went down to the Riverwalk and took a boat/barge ride.  Well, eleven of us did. We spotted three other Magpies on one of the bridges. They had the R.C.T.Q. banner (that's the newsgroup where we met online lo those many years ago) and unfurled it as our boat went past.  (The boat pilot temporarily stopped his schtick as we hollered, "RCTQ! Go Magpies!")

That evening it was dinner and a show at Marie and Ronnie's in New Braunfels.  We enjoyed barbecue (beef, sausage, pork) and all the fixings (slaw, potato salad, beans) in the bunkhouse dining room.

After that Ronnie, Gary, Ronnie's sons (and friends) gave a calf roping demonstration.  [They compete on the national circuit.]

Sunday was another free day.  I drove 80 miles east to Brenham, the town where I had my first professional library job (1975-79).  I arrived in time for the worship service at the church where I was an active member. The welcome was very cordial. I recognized one couple (she knew me right away). Two other women introduced themselves to me after they were reminded who I was. (I've reconnected on FB with a church member who's a quilter but she wasn't there. I only decided to make the drive late Saturday.)   After church I drove around the city seeing the library (the new building opened a couple of years ago), a glimpse of the garage apartment where I lived, and other neighborhoods.  Yes, it's grown, but the backbone network of streets from the oldest parts of town (it was settled in the 1840's) hasn't changed.

My apartment was the upper floor of the white building at that you can barely see behind the house.   I was not bold enough to go farther than the curb. 

Back in San Marcos Sunday evening:  we wound down from the emotional high of our busy, memorable weekend.   Everyone was tired and we turned in early.  

My roommate had an early flight out of San Antonio and was up at 4 a.m. Monday.   Anna and I left for the Austin airport at 8:30 -- her flight was before noon, mine after noon, but it was just as easy for us to ride together.  

I was HOME at 6 p.m.  My husband was happy to see me and I was happy to see him!  

2022 will be the Magpies' 25th anniversary.  We're already talking about where we will gather to celebrate.

# # # # # # # # #

The tote bags that I made as favors were well-received. They are light weight but sturdy and we discovered that they hold a lot of fabric. 

(My tote is the rolled-up green in the center.) 

Here's my stash enhancement -- fabric from the show, from Las Colchas, and some giveaways.  37 yards in all.  I was able to fit it into my suitcase without having to unzip the expansion panel.  I guess I could have bought more! 


Libby in TN said...

And a good time was had by all, I'm sure!

cbott said...

> And a good time was had by all, I'm sure!

Indeed it was! I always love a tote bag, and mine practically lived on my shoulder the entire week(end). What a wonderful Fest that was!!


Cathy said...

It sounds like you had a ball and that you were constantly on the move. Old memories and friends, new memories and friends, fabric, food... sounds like the perfect getaway to me!

cityquilter grace said...

wow...looks like a great time was had by are certainly the most traveling quilter i know!! nice new stash....and very nice quilt photos...oooh those 'em! thanks for including them in your post....

Ellie said...

Thanks for the lovely quilt photos! Such variety and it seems as if some are trending toward traditional. Just wait and it will come round again! Looks as if you had a great time!

Cathy said...

Welcome back!

Oh, that looked like a lot of fun (and looked exhausting).

Thanks for sharing quilt photos. I liked quite a few of them but none of them actually inspired me.

Lcrrkhs said...

The DAMN Banner!

(i love this banner and its name.)

KaHolly said...

What a fabulous trip, Nann! You got to see and do it all! Don’t forget to email me our picture together! I’d love to have a copy. It was so exciting to 'bump into' you right off the bat like that. I enjoyed this post very much! XO

Kim said...

What a great group to belong to! Looks like all had a good time. I do think you could have gotten more in that suitcase. As a Stashbuster, I guess I am leading you down the wrong path!
Kimberly in Iowa

Quayquilter said...

I enjoyed this post. I'm a retired librarian from the UK just back from QuiltCon. We visited the library in Austin: just wonderful. My husband spent more time there while I was at the show. You packed so much in to your time away.

Ann said...

Reading about the Magpies always makes me wish I'd joined an online group all those years ago. But there were plenty of quilters in town. I'm delighted you visited Brenham again. It's just as lovely as ever, isn't it? And yes, you packed a lot into this trip.

QuiltGranma said...

in among the words quilts I spied Per Sisterhood! Interesting thought! Yes, we persist!

Caroline M said...

I'm almost certain that holiday fabric comes under the heading of "souvenirs" rather than fabric purchases and is therefore totally allowable. If you could get it in the case it was clearly Not Too Much. I'm sure I could write you some sort of a note of dispensation.

It was lovely to see you, even if not in person