Monday, August 8, 2011

Quilters Take Manhattan recap

I'm back and all settled in from the whirlwind trip to New York this past weekend for the Quitlers Take Manhattan event, benifiting the Alliance for American Quilts. We had a great time and it was an amazing experience. Friday night's program was held at the loft home of Victoria Findlay Wolfe. Before the program started there was a chance for people to chat and it was great catching up with friends I don't get to see often enough, like John Adams and Jennifer Paganelli, above with the uber-talented Jay McCarroll,

and my new friends Heide and Heather, who are both modern quilters from Connecticut. I actually have known Heide for at least a year through twitter, but this was the first time we met in person. She's so great!

Amy Milne, Executive Director of the Alliance for American Quilts, started the program by telling about the AAQ and it's mission to document, preserve, and share our American quilt heritage by collecting the rich stories that historic and contemporary quilts, and their makers, tell about our nation's diverse peoples and their communities.

Victoria was interviewed by Meg Cox as part of the Quilters' S.O.S.- Save Our Stories program, and it was really interesting to learn how she approaches her work, some of which is shown below in the next few photos.

Following the interview was a round table discussion about the Modern Quilt movement that was moderated by Jackie Kunkel of Canton Village Works. The panel included Nancy Soriano, Melanie Testa, Kim Hryniewicz, Jennifer Paganelli, and John Adams. Each had their own take on how Modern Quilting is defined, and how they see the movement progressing, and it was very interesting to hear their thoughts.

There were a lot of great door prizes, and Thomas Knauer won this gorgeous patchwork scarf by Jay McCarroll. I was totally bummed that my number wasn't drawn because I thought that scarf was fabulous!

Saturday's event was held at the Fashion Institute of Technology. Marianne Fons, of Fons and Porter fame, started the program with a brief discussion on what has motivated people to make quilts throughout history.

Her daughter Mary Fons, host of the internet program Quilty, talked about the new generation of quilters. It was Mary's birthday, so the board of the Alliance for American Quilts surprised her with a cupcake at the start of her presentation.

Marianne and Mary then took questions from the audience.

Next up was a fashion show of Jay McCarroll's quilt inspired designs. We sat in the front row so I had a great view of his work.

My favorite piece was this gorgeous patchwork skirt modeled by Victoria. It was amazing, and Jay said his inspiration for that line was from deflated hot air balloons. Pure genius.

This outfit, modeled by Luke Haynes, was from a runway show from Jay's college days. He designed a line of menswear inspired by mental illness, so this orange patchwork piece features a straight jacket, pants, and a shirt (being held by Luke) with an identification number across the front.

After the fashion show, Jay was interviewed by Mark Lipinksi, for the Quilters' S.O.S. program.

Kate Spain came down for the day. We could not stop cracking up during the interview. Jay + Mark = hysterical. Seriously! Here were are with the ever lovely Jennifer Paganelli.

And the Connecticut trio, Jennifer, Heide, and Kate. Why can't we live closer? Maybe I need to move to Connecticut?

Following the festivities at FIT, we headed down to The City Quilter for a cocktail party. The City Quilter is a great fabric store located in Chelsea and they just expanded with the addition of a gallery devoted solely to the exhibition of quilts.

The beautiful Confetti Naturescape quilts by Noriko Endo were on display. They were so full depth and I'm intrigued by her technique of laying fabrics.

This gorgeous version of a Dear Jane quilt that was made by CQ teachers Judy Doenias and Diane Rode Schneck was also on display. The pair have used it to teach Dear Jane classes at City Quilter for over 10 years.

I really loved the label on the back and its exquisite embroidery.

So, that was the event in a nutshell! Stay tuned to the blog this week for more photos from my trip to NYC. I took tons and can't wait to share them with you!


Kate D. Spain said...

what a fun recap, heather! it was great to see you in NY, and i definitely think you should move to CT!! xok

Victoria Findlay Wolfe said...

ah! now it's working! it wasn't letting me leave a comment before... SO great to see you again! Hope you got home with out any issues! Happy sewing!

Little Bluebell (Adrianne) said...

Looks like a great trip! Thanks for the recap and all the pictures. Very fun to see. : )

Cheryl Arkison said...

Sounds like an amazing weekend. All quilt love all the time, and in NYC!

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