Monday, June 22, 2015

Road Trip: Appleton

I was charmed by Appleton's Quilt Guild president, Kathy Meyer, last winter on her visit here to Minneapolis. She loved my Minneapolis City of Lakes fabric collection for Modern Yardage and told me how Appleton quilters would love to have their city landmarks on fabric. They have a big group of 137 enthusiast members and supportive city leaders, all very proud of their hometown. Modern Yardage has the ability to print niche fabric themes and I was ready to design for a new city.
So I planned a road trip thru Wisconsin, Iowa and Minnesota, starting with Appleton.
Kathy pulled together a group of women to meet with me at The Blue Emporium gallery to talk. I shared my Minneapolis fabric collection with them and we discussed what landmarks and images I should photograph and then draw for Appleton.
The Blue Emporium has a great collection of handmade and local art, including silk screens by Cathy, the owner. She works with 3 talented artists to create prints, cards and silk screened images including the appleton icon at the top of this blog post. Following the meeting, Kathy Meyer drove me around town to take photographs but torrential rain made that difficult!
A few of us gathered at Kathy's home before the guild meeting that evening and we enjoyed dinner and these cookies Kathy pressed using an empty thread spool. Very creative!
This photo shows just part of the large gathering that night, despite the flooded streets just a couple hours earlier. I'd estimate 80 members attended, brought projects to share and to listen to the guest speaker, Jacquie Gering. 
Wow! She was an amazing quilter, designer, speaker and teacher. I adored her designs and thoroughly enjoyed her talk. Here's a link to her blog to learn more about this talented woman and her Tallgrass Prairie Studio. 
I met members during break and after the meeting to show them samples of my work and get ideas for Appleton fabric designs. They were all excited to hear about the project and want to know as soon as it's available. 

The next morning was sunny and beautiful, so I went back downtown to take reference photos of places like the Lawrence University chapel and the Houdini Plaza shown here.  Then I was back in the car headed to Madison for the next leg of my road trip.

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