Wednesday, May 27, 2015

My First Trip to Market!

I've hardly been home since International Spring Quilt Market a couple of weeks ago. The entire trip - the experience of sample spree, meeting up with friends old & new, cycling around Minneapolis, checking out upcoming fabric lines, admiring gorgeous quilts, helping Lee set up her booth, signing books, delivering my schoolhouse to a packed room (they actually sat on the FLOOR!) - ALL of it was simply fantastic. I didn't take my camera, so I only have cell phone images, most of which I shared on Instagram.

pat sloan and krista
Finally, we meet!! Pat Sloan!! I love this picture. Pat was at market promoting her 31st book - we were at the beautiful Martingale booth for her signing of Teach Me To Applique.  

What a thrill to meet industry lovelies like Pat Sloan, Pam (Kitty Morning) Vieira-McGinnis and Alex Anderson. These women are professional, successful, kind and supportive. I could not believe their enthusiasm for supporting a relative newbie like me. So nice.  I find myself smack in the demographic middle of the modern quilt bloggers in their 30's and the industry mavens with years of experience ahead of me. I must say that the example set by the likes of these three women is something to strive for. There is definitely room in the industry for all of our creativity to co-exist and it was exciting to share my work with positive, successful role models like them.

Spring Quilt Market 2015
A tiny portion of the Sample Spree line up a full 2 hours before the doors were set to open!

If you aren't familiar with the twice yearly International Quilt Market, it is a "trade only" event. It is an opportunity for buyers to see all of the new products and place orders with suppliers. The entire day before the show floor opens, schoolhouse presentations take place in conference rooms.  They cover everything from industry trends, new fabric lines and new publications, to point of sale systems.  Since this is my first book and my presentation was at the end of a very long day, I was worried about talking to an empty room. I begged all of my blogging buddies to come and fill seats....I needn't have worried as most of them ended up sitting on the floor!  My heart rate went up when I saw how many people were cramming into the room and I ended up talking a mile a minute about the book projects and finishing up way early!  Feedback from shop owners was excellent, though - they love the projects and appreciated the companion sales sheet with workshop suggestions that I had prepared for them (if you are a shop owner and would like me to email you a copy, please let me know in a comment below!).

Spring Quilt Market 2015
Sharing my windowed zipper demo

Having the opportunity to meet more of the wonderful staff members of Martingale was really great. So many people there have helped me, and continue to do so, with Make It, Take It. Their experience and preparation for Market was very evident in the smooth running (and massive attendance) at all of their schoolhouse presentations and book signings.  They had shop owners sign up in advance for the book signings at the Martingale booth. This gave authors the opportunity to share a quick little demo to about 5 people at a time, sign their books, then greet the next folks. I showed step by step how to create a windowed zipper since that is a pocket feature in both the Ultimate Equipment Tote and the Knitting Needle Clutch projects in the book. One friendly shop owner from Newfoundland made my day when he said "If I get nothing else out of Market, the trip was worth it just to learn how to do this!" Awww, smiley face.

Spring Quilt Market 2015
Speaking of smiley faces, these guys made tissue carnations ALL DAY during set up of their point of sale software booth.

There were many, many first time meetings of people I've been friendly with on line which was so much fun. I knew that Amanda was going to be at Market on Saturday, so I brought my version of Christina's Macaron Delight pattern made with Amanda's Spring Bloom fabrics. She's an absolute delight and I cannot wait to see what she'll design next for Windham. 

Spring Quilt Market 2015

I'm going to call it quits there for now. I've got a day retreat to run on Saturday and it is only 11 sleeps until we depart on our Stitch at Sea Alaska cruise. My to do list is a mile long! I hope you enjoyed this little glimpse into a first-timer's trip to Market.


Kirsty @ Bonjour Quilts said...

It sounds amazing and exhausting, but exhausting in the most lovely way. So glad you had a great time and got to meet some heroes. Good luck with your prep for you next trip (North, to Alaska, go north the rush is on!) A cruise to Alaska sounds pretty exotic to this Australian.

paulette said...

Another great post! I could feel your excitement and joy! I'm so happy that Market was such a positive experience for you! I couldn't see you in that line-up for the Spree though...?? :o))

Anonymous said...

How wonderful that everything went so well for you! I would love to have a chance to meet so many of the people who have inspired me. An Alaska cruise is on my bucket list. Enjoy yourself.

Leanne said...

Your market debut was a great success!

pennydog said...

Thanks for the account, sounds fun if not tiring!

Debbie said...

Sounds like a fun and productive time!

Anonymous said...

Dear Krista!!!!! You cannot imagine how exciting is reading all about your adorable experience in Spring Quilt Market! I am sooo happy for you! Your deserve this opportunity 'cause you are a very very talented quilter and a darling person! Lots of hugs from Brazil!!!
P.S. I have a dream to make a cruise to Alaska, and now, I will be there only when I can be in a Quilt Cruise with you teaching us!!!

Dianne said...

Great insight into your time at market!
Years from now I will be having a conversation with someone about Kritsa Hennebury - "Industry Maven" - and will say "you know I knew her before her first book was published and she hasn't changed a bit. She's always been enthusiastic, kind and supportive." 'Cause that's just how you roll. :0)
Counting the sleeps to cruise time and working on my to do list! Can't believe we're going to be at QBTB one week before departure but am keen to give Annie May a trial run and lube job before taking her onto the high seas!
Good luck with your to do list!

Sandi said...

Congratulations on surviving your first Trqde Market Krista, may this be an exciting new beginning for you.

Enjoy your day retreat and then onto the cruising to recharge your batters.

Barbara B said...

Following your exciting journey has been fun. Maybe I can get to next QBTB. Adding them back into life will be grand. Have fun on Saturday.Barbara

Live a Colorful Life said...

I wish I had been one of those lucky people sitting on the floor of your school house. It would have been so much fun!

Esther said...

Sounds like a wonderful experience! So good to see you last week at MQG Victoria! The Ultimate equipment tote is coming along nicely, can't wait to show it to you in ...Yikes 10 more excited!

ChristaQuilts said...

I'm so glad I got to see you again and that you had such a great market experience. That picture of you and Pat is adorable!!

SarahZ said...

So fun to hear about your time at Market...sounds exhausting and revitalizing all at the same time :) sounds like your Summer is off with a bang!

Anonymous said...

Hope your cruise is great. I was sorry to miss your class here, but gave your name to a few people I've taught for in the islands recently.