Judi and I made our annual pilgrimage to the Hobart Craft and Quilt fair yesterday. We always have such a lovely day. We don’t take the kids, we don’t take the husbands and we don’t take a budget. It’s sublime.
Judi drove, I paid to get in and the first people we ran into, as usual, were the Handweavers Spinners and Dyers guild. There was a gorgeous old fellow weaving on a fair sized, handmade table loom who we had a good long chat to. He was weaving tartan scarves from commercial 2 ply 260 (or thereabouts) count yarn from a book of traditional Scottish tartan pattersn which he showed us. He showed us some lovely soft, squishy fabric which he had made with fewer warps (or is it wefts?) per inch and some denser, stiffer, more picnic blankety fabric which he has made with heaps of wefts (or is it warps?) per inch. It was very inspiring – I should maybe make a wish for a kintter’s loom from santa.
We spent an hour or so wandering around the stalls and then about an hour and a half admiring the quilts. Although, I couldn’t find as many “favourites” as I did last year I don’t think. The swirly quilting is really amazing and, even though most of them were machine quilted, it is hard to imagine the amount of time and patience it must have taken to hand quilt some of those enormous, and breathtaking quilts. I chose, for my viewer’s choice vote, a queen size quilt which had a Japanese central panel surrounded by rose, russet, gold and similar coloured panels which had had different flower patterns quilted onto them. I also loved the junior quilting exhibit.
We had a chat to one of the quilting ladies about techniques and so on, but I think she failed to grasp our total and complete lack of knowledge about the craft so she was starting at a point that we are still a long way away from. Still very interesting to look at her technique and quilting paraphernalia.
Then we went and had latte with an extra shot, always so much more enjoyable when children are not present, and we debated what we were going to spend. Judi gave me a slap every time I mentioned the sparkly Prudence Mapstone yarn or the wool/stainless steel blend from Habu and, thanks to her, I managed to come away with zero yarn – hooray!
Judi bought a bag kit from Giggle buttons (there was such a crowd around these porcelain buttons that we had to come back a couple of times before we could get a look at them – I thought they were going to be something special but they were terribly chintzy, I wasn’t impressed at all – the bag kit was cute however), some beads from one of the many (many, many) bead stalls, some of the sparkly, metallic yarn and a freeform bag frame from Prudence Mapstone (she’s allowed, she is not on a yarn diet) and some teddy bear eyes. I bought some 120cm cable Addi turbos for two at a time socks from Yarns Galore, some gorgeous buttons from Kimono buttons and beads (the buttons are made from Japanese fabric pressed between perspex) and the Vogue Knitting Ultimate Sock Book from Dymocks.
We had a chat to one of the bobbin lace ladies on the way out, but it all looks so fiddly and painstaking and all you get at the end of it is lace. Not for me, but it was fun to see how it worked.
Here are my treasures: