I have had a very difficult time putting 'pen to paper' to give my Quilt Market Report. It has nothing to do with Quilt Market itself which was a very exciting and productive time. The general mood seemed very upbeat to me with lots of people and lots of chatter. We visited with good friends and made some new ones, saw the latest fabrics from several manufacturers and tried to see what the upcoming trend would be. There was lots of wool applique in patterns including a couple of Block of the Month designs, bright floral fabrics and ones designed for home dec projects. Purses and totes are still popular as are children's clothing designs.
My difficulty is about my trip to Minneapolis for Market. I have been attending Market as an exhibitor since 1998 and most times travel from my home in Victoria, through Vancouver and on to the Market location. All Canadians travelling to the US are required to fill in a customs form. When travelling on business I always say that. This time was no different. I carry the quilt samples to be hung in my booth in my luggage. I guess I think it is safer that way than sending them by mail.
This time I was questioned as usual by the US Customs agent, he decided they needed more information and I was directed to another secure area to be further questioned by other officials. They were upset that I was taking my quilts with me, saying that there was no guarantee that I wouldn't just sell them and that I should have shipped them. The upshot was I was delayed for over an hour, missed my flights to Minneapolis and was forced to write on the front of my quilts with a felt pen provided by the agent. So, the word 'SAMPLE' now appears on 8 of my quilts. As you can imaging, this was very upsetting both to me and my business partner Susan (who had a different agent who wasn't concerned about what she was taking to the trade show, she made the flights and really wondered what had happened to me!)
So, from now on I will have to mail my quilts to Quilt Market and hope that they arrive safe and sound.
A special thank you to all my friends at Market who expressed their concern. I really appreciate your support.