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Expo Reviews > Vermont Quilt Festival

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Posted by: Mufffet
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About Mufffet starstarstarstar
VT United States
Member since: 8/14/05
Reviews: 137 (expos: 4)
Skill level:Intermediate
Favored by: 66 people
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Posted on: 7/1/07 4:52 PM
Last Updated: 6/27/08 8:58 PM
Rating: starstarstar
Review Rating: Helpful by 2 people   Very Helpful by 1 people   
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Reporting in from the Vermont Quilt Festival. Yesterday I spent four and a half hours there looking at sewing machines primarily.

I think the parking and access to the event were really excellent. The venue is nice because there are huge rather new exhibition buildings, complete with air conditioning, penteous parking, well controlled, and facilities for food. However, the food was not really the best. I hope next year there are more choices and better setup for eating without leaving the exhibition area - inside and out. The area this year was rather small and the choices limited.

There were hoards of dedicated quilters from as far away as Oregon, South Carolina and Maine, not to mention Canada. All the ladies, they were chiefly ladies, were enjoying the beautiful fabrics, the plethora of notions, and the demonstrations of such arcane items as irons costing in the hundreds (Euro Steam System).

I saw the Statler and Gammill quilting machines quilting away by themselves using a computerized onboard program. I saw so many wonderful quilting cottons, and so many absolutely lovely and elegant quilts.

This year there were over 400 quilts on exhibit. They represented 21 states and 2 Canadian provinces. The smallest quilt was 36" in perimeter and the largest was 452". The youngest entrant was 7 years old!

All this was background for me though because my chief motivation in attending was to touch, look at and pet the sewing machines. There were four area dealers there representing Bernina, Janome, Pfaff, and Viking. I spent time in each vendor area, and saw several machines I had never seen. Actually, I had never seen any of these recent models except for the Vikings.

The Viking dealer was selling the Sapphire 830, she didn't have the 850 there. "Show price" $999. The Janome 4900 was also "show price" $999. The Bernina dealer and the Pfaff dealer were also represented and had special pricing.

The size of the quilt festival surprised my friend who went along, though each year there is advertising for the festival and the size of this event is apparent from the literature you can get from their website.

With admission came a lovely program which is actually a 168 page book, and which describes the quilts, the teachers, and the vendors with addresses, lists of events, classes, and a complete directory to locations of events and vendors. Of course I completely failed to check this out before I plunged into the fun! Probably because I had no idea what the event would be like and how one would navigate.

I highly recommend attending next year if you are able. Garment sewers can browse and buy machines, fabric, notions, cutting implements and probably more interesting items. The beauty of the quilts cannot be overstated.

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Mufffet said... (2/24/08 3:59 PM) Reply
Fictionfan - I do know and love the Saint Michael's venue, which has a long time special place in my heart. I thought I wouldn't mention it since I don't take quilting classes, BUT, since you bring it up - St. Mike's not only has the classes, shuttles to and from the Essex venue, but St. Mike's provides low cost housing for attendees in the college dorms. A very very nice setting of grass, trees and general beauty will surround you on a peaceful college campus with lovely brick buildings, and pretty decent food! All this not too far (a mile?!) from downtown Burlington, Queen City of Vermont. So much to do, not just the Shelbourne Museum, but cruises on Lake Champlain, a few more colleges to admire, including the University of Vermont, and a plethora of local eateries, and local music. Something for everyone. It would be worth any quilter's while to check out the website for this years festival!
Fictionfan said... (2/23/08 8:39 PM) Reply
I would like to add that the festival takes place in two spots: at the Exposition grounds as described with large, air conditioned buildings for the vendors and displays, and at St. Micheal's College campus, where many classes are given. Muffet apparently did not see that part, and one could spend the entire time in classes learning just about everything about quilting techniques, software for quilting, how to...just about anything quilting. Some of the classes require a sewing machine, and usually there is a way to rent a machine in advance if you don't want to haul yours there with you. There is a shuttle to carry people between the two places, which are about three miles apart, I think, and easy to navigate between if you wanted to do it on your own. You could easily drive it, but why move your vehicle once you've parked it? Walking the distance is not worth the time it would take, and it is a busy road without sidewalks for most of the way. Incidentally, the Shelburne Museum is nearby with several bulidings of quilts on display of every variety, and they usually have a few of them at the Vermont Quilt Show.
alethia said... (7/10/07 12:10 PM) Reply
I can only imagine how wonderful the Vermont Quilt festival was. I had the opportunity to vist Vermon 3 years ago and i went to see a quilt show it was spectacular. Vermont is a beautiful state. Thank for the information, i willplan to attend next year
Mufffet said... (7/5/07 9:32 AM) Reply
Well, yes. This is a great place this time of year, and the Quilt Festival was held in really nice weather this year - not too hot. Sewlovely - be sure and go next time! :)
Warbler said... (7/4/07 9:22 PM) Reply
Great Review of my most favorite quilt show! I try to attend every year but I was not able to make it this season and I missed it greatly. I think it is very well organized and always some exhibit that is extremely compelling. Last year they had a whole cloth petit point quilt from the 18th Century!! If anyone is interested in this show it is well worth the effort to go. Besides, Vermont is a lovely place! ;-)
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