Friday, October 23, 2009

Market's freshest produce

While seeing old friends and what they've been up to is one of Market's big pleasures, seeing what's new provides excitement, inspiration, and in many cases, awe. In this post, I'll share a bit of what I saw that I hadn't seen before.

First up was the fabric of Marcia Derse.
Her Gerta collection for Troy was fantastic—it's discharge dying in gorgeous colors and patterns writ large (as in large quantities). Marcia was delightful as well and helped me find a sales rep so that I could share her fabric with my shop-owning friend, Codi (I will stop by with his card, I promise Codi). Here are a couple of photos: one of Marcia in her booth and another of her fabrics. Note especially the fabulous pillows she made using them.

Next are the patterns of From Me to You, a design company from Walnut Creek, California. Neither of the designers was in the booth when I came by and I wish I'd gotten more photos, but this close-up of the basket pattern (with the dually appropriate name of Going to Market) gives you and idea of the fresh take on a traditional block that these gals create. This team has been designing for a number of years, as well as being thoroughly enmeshed in the quilting industry through writing books, patterns, and teaching. One of them is a co-founder of the Empty Spools Seminars in Asilomar, Calif., which I'd love to attend someday.

Another booth that made me drool was the Seven Seas Export group that includes Echino fabrics designed by Etsuko Furuya. Etsuko is very sweet and shy and the only photo I have of her smiling face is with my phone, and not very good. But do note an earlier shot I got of her back and the amazing dress she's wearing. I used her Dew Spring fabric to make a Birdie Sling and not only loved the print, but the fabric's heavier weight and texture, as well. From the looks of the booth, there's lots more to look forward to from this designer!

Also in the Seven Seas grouping was a booth of amazing felt creations. Last year, felt sushi made it big: this year it was felt desserts. There were all sorts of adorable kits available. In another section were the sweetest baby prints, stitched into blankets, diaper bags, and bibs. Japanese fabric overall seemed better represented at Market this year.

And this very kind (and jet-lagged) young woman from Hiroshima's Tulip Company, Ltd. was touting quilting needles and encouraging passersby to make a pincushion. She gave me a great sample packet of quilting needles (the packet claims "The Needles are Affection") which I look forward to trying.

Another team of designers who aren't new in the biz, but are currently captivating me are Piece O' Cake. I adore their bright colors and stylized designs. The brown pieced background with the stick-like, aqua trees appliqued atop makes me want to stop everything and stitch.

As if all the new fabrics and patterns aren't enough, there are also vendors at Market with amazing vintage textiles, jewelry, and more. This vintage button booth was like the dimestore of my youth. When I was in sixth grade and had just gotten my 50-cent allowance, my parents would let my younger sisters and me visit a store that offered penny candy. It was so hard to choose because the owners had everything imaginable. And being near these buttons felt just the same—unfortunately, they were more than a penny apiece.

End of day feet hurt. And you were wondering about the armadillo cake? Sorry, must wait for Day Two of Market and my next post.

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