I came, I saw, I conquered. Well, not exactly conquered, but I did go and see....Quilt Festival in Houston that is. I wasn't planning on going this year because I've got so much work I didn't think I could afford to take the day off. Thursday was the only day I could go and I wasn't relishing driving to Houston and back in one day. But I came home from swim team that morning and declared to Abi, " Karpe diem!"(notice the Latin theme). She replied,"Huh?"(Latin's pretty much Greek to her) and I explained that we were heading to Quilt Festival.
Look how happy she is to be at Festival.
I've been going to festival for several years and what struck me about this year was a feeling that there were fewer vendors and attendees. Maybe it was just Thursday's crowd, but there just seemed to be more room in the aisles. I was also struck by how many companies were selling long arm quilting machines. I don't think I've ever seen more vendors offering these. In the past the idea of a long arm has always perplexed me. Why would you want a machine that takes up an entire room? How many large quilts would you need to make to justify this thing? Well this year I found myself inquiring about long arms. I've got several large quilts to quilt in the next few months and the thought of quilting them on my Bernina is really daunting. Also, salesman Mark at I-don't-remember-the-name-of-the-company company showed me a long arm that could be easily assembled and disassembled in 15 minutes. Suddenly, a long arm seemed like something I might be interested in.
Raise your hand if you knew that a basic long arm costs $7,000. I didn't. I thought it might run $1,000, maybe $2,000. Imagine my shock when salesman Mark quoted me the price and told me that it was a show special. I walked away claiming I would think about it, but that was just to make salesman Mark feel better about his selling prowess. Instead I've decided to rent time on a long arm locally.
Since I didn't have to figure out how I would cram a long arm quilting machine into the trunk of my Toyota Corolla I had room to bring this little dandy home.
I purchased it at ROM Woodworking and it's going to change my life or at least organize my thread.
It's called a thread barrel and has 72 dowels that once assembled by a willing, hammer-toting 11-year old can be mounted on a wall.
Isn't it pretty?