Monday, March 11, 2013

Victoria Creative Stitches

Chef and I travelled to Victoria to see the boys and to check in at Victoria Creative Stitches. As a Calgarian, I am giving my honest take on it. I will preface this with, this was my experience and perhaps others had a different experience. 

It was held in an arena area which had great parking as it was across the parking lot to a mall. I went on Friday, so everything else was on the go --- daycare, kids programs, hockey, etc. The venue itself seemed great, but the entrance to the arena where they had the show was not marked well. Thank goodness they had a table inside the doors manned by soneone to direct you to the actual entry to the show. We got to the entry to the show only to have people lined up to the double doors with only one door open. This one door was for people to go in and out. As there was a lineup, it created mass confusion. Some people paid in advance, some people had to give their payment, creating a clog right at the door. The table was approximately 4 feet from the door, so there was no "going around" people to get out or to go in if you already had your  hand stamped. Maybe this was a first for them? Ten dollar entry for husbands as well. How about letting hubby in for FREE? Think of it, they are the one's that buy the BIG presents for us. I'm thinking that they need a little tender loving care. How about giving bigger discounts to the spouse when they come in? Just a thought!

Classes cost $10 per person and seemed on Thursday to be limited in attendance. It was difficult to find the classes as they were not marked very well (note that I am comparing this to Calgary's show where the rooms are clearly marked above the curtains). Maybe they were marked, but I must have been blind (note that I wasn't in the classes, so I mostly likely wasn't paying attention).

I did have a big "ah hah" moment though when I went to the Hammel's booth. I remember picking up fabric from there at the last show here in Calgary. The boxes containing all those fat quarter's were pretty much the same. There was so little new in lines of fabric for the fat quarter's and the lineup to the checkout was ridiculous! Good for them! They made the cash they needed as a business, but myself, I didn't see too much new around there.

What was "new" to me was the Sashiko booth - A Threaded Needle. Susan was great and gave me a mini demo of how to proceed. It was great and prompted me instantly to get a few little items to start this and see how much I liked it. It seems as though it may be easy to take along when you have time on your hands waiting! Thanks to Susan who was so welcoming and drawing people into her booth! I found a beautiful wooden quilt rack to hang on the wall. I have a perfect project for it!

I decided against going back to the show on Saturday and went searching for other quilt shops and found Bib n' Tucker Quilting in a little area by a cement plant. I would have never gone into that area searching for a shop, but I was determined! We found it and sadly it was closed.

On Sunday, we went to Satin Moon Quilted Garden and found some great fat quarters that I haven't seen at the show.  There shop was very close to all the tourist attractions, but when we got there on Sunday it was very quiet and it took a while before someone came to ask if we needed asssitance. Perhaps they were tired from the weekend? Chef found some great "fish" fabric that I scooped up.

The Secret Workshop was being manned by what I would call a "runner". He had his west coast running gear underneath his t-shirt. It looked like it was the LAST place on earth he wanted to be, and his booth was a little lacking in people -- except me! I figured since it wasn't swamped with people I'd be able to have a good look-see and maybe cross off some of those items on my list! I managed a few marking pens/pencils and I've been wanting to try the bondable tape for pieces of batting (much cheaper than the other booths I must say!)

I'll have to see how this works!

Guess who's going to do some more free motion?

The marking tools...and oops some fabric ribbon from A Threaded Needle
Sunday, we travelled back to Bib n'Tucker Quilting. Though it was is an unusual area (for me...the big city girl!), it was packed with yummy fabric! We were in single file between the rows and had to step into little aisles to let people pass. Did I mention how friendly everyone was? With the exception of a grumpy little blue-haired lady who was in front of me, adding bolts and bolts and demanding that the bolts were on sale (if not, she'd leave in a huff and find another bolt!). Chef and son were waiting for me in the Brew Pub across the street. Now if that's not GREAT planning for quilt shop, I don't know what it is! Anyways, I found some great little fat quarters to add to my stash and of course bought a few meters of the black and white's that I'm adding to and a couple of meters of a basic grey for "Science Project" by Jaybird Quilts.

Of course I found other fabrics at the show, but I forgot the booth where I bought these. I bought twelve fat quarters for $20 -- When I went to one of the other quilt shops, they were charging $4.95 for a fat quarter. I know people want to support their local quilt shops, but seriously? Five bucks for a fat quarter? I'm a frugal quilter when I am building my stash. For fabric to "sit" there, I don't want it to  be breaking the bank. I have enough fabric that breaks the bank as it is!
All in all it was a fantastic weekend! We went to some amazing restaurants with the boys. Of course the boys were thrilled to be having decent meals and thanked us profusely. Oh being young and single brings it's downfalls of course, but being older and wiser brings us creaks in our knees and backs when we went exploring the forests and going around the area on foot! Travelling with Chef is always an amazing experience. He's always on the look out for fabric and quilt shops for me and indulges my creativity. I'm a lucky gal!

We had a mini-trip out to Sidney (By the Sea). My sister used to live there and I wanted to see how it changed in the years since she's moved back to Calgary. It's grown of course, but mainly maintained it's small town charm. We had a great lunch at a Thai restaurant and then on the wya back to the car I stopped in the Thrift Store -- lookie at what I found!:

Wooden Spools!

Happy Quilting everyone!

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