From Houston, with Love by Doug Kreinik

Now that I have rested a bit after working the International Quilt Market in Houston, Texas week before last, and gotten acclimated to Daylight Savings Time, I need to say: I love Quilt Market. There is such a variety of creative options to see, from hand work to machine work. The art work is great and the imagination is overflowing. My favorite moment was the exhibition where there are more than a 1000 quilts to view. The quilts range from the very traditional to fantastic art quilts, plus clothing, dolls and this year a fantasy bra exhibit. The art quilts were big and used all sorts of medium. Landscape quilts played with experiences and scenes, making incredible eye candy. Being a bicycle rider, one of my favorite pieces was from Finland picturing a bicycle race. It showed depth, speed and perspective all at one time - very exciting. We are seeing more surface embellishing on quilts and, surprisingly, surface embellishing using the long-arm machines. We worked with several long arm companies at this show, using Kreinik metallic and silk threads for quilting and embellishing.

In our booth, we had a professional Janome educator, Carol McKinney, who used our product as I have never seen before. She also made a scarf from the Kreinik Bag O’Bits. It is so easy that even I could do it. She used a water-soluble material (preferably one sheet of the sticky type and one plain), added lots of metallic bits, a free-motion foot for the machine, Kreinik embroidery thread for the top stitches and a regular bobbin thread. Carol encased the bits by stitching around the outside, then creating an up and down grid, followed with lots of free motion embroidery. After about two hours, presto: a great-looking scarf. Our instructor made a sweater jacket with coordinating colors by creating fabric and cutting it out. The whole process blew my mind.

I really enjoy visiting with the doll makers. The dolls builders used Kreinik metallic and silk threads as embroidery and embellishments on clothing and also for the hair. They even used the Kreinik iron-ons in the clothing. This years theme for one doll challenge centered on Gypsies. The faces, clothing and fantasy adventures around the dolls described many stories. I will always be a fan of doll making.

Oh yeah, and the favorite eating places... I always eat at Whole Foods and Central Market in Houston. BBQ was at Goodes off of Kirby and 45, and my cousin took me to a terrific Dim Sum restaurant in the new Chinatown area near the Police Department at Bellaire and Ranchester. Also, I was treated to a 1-hour foot massage across the way. Very reasonable and relaxing.

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News direct from thread maker Kreinik Mfg. Co., Inc., located in Parkersburg, West Virginia. Visit our factory outlet store when you are in the area; call for hours 1-800-537-2166.

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