Field trip to International Quilt Festival Long Beach

on the road
When I heard it was going to be the last year for festival in Long Beach I knew I needed to make the 400 mile drive south to experience it for the last time in this California location. My daughter Indigo and I hit the road at 8:30 amla traffic

and made it to the outskirts of Los Angeles county around 2:30 pm. Needing a pitstop we stopped in Glendale where we lived for many years and popped in the Galleria and made a fast detour to check out some shoes my daughter was interested in. I was sold immediately on these ultra light weight canvas boots made by a company called Palladium, I think they will be perfect for travel since they are light and have a much better foot support than a Converse sneaker. 15 minutes later we were back on the road in yucky LA traffic driving to Orange county to meet up with my good friends Jamie Fingal and Leslie Tucker Jenison.


If you didn’t know, Jamie and Leslie are wonderful cooks and have a shared blog called Artists Cooking with Gas, so of course we had a fabulous meal of plank cooked salmon and a delicious veggie salad.


We had a lovely time catching up with good wine and lots of laughs, and in the morning we drove to Long Beach

Long beach aquarium Long Beach Queen Mary

After dropping our stuff at the hotel we brought the quilts for the Dinner @ 8 exhibit An Exquisite Moment that Jamie and Leslie curated to the convention center and started the process of laying out the quilts to arrange them for hanging.

hanging the exhibit

This is actually a pretty elaborate process that requires a team of volunteers; to find all the rods and cords for hanging, that also need to be adjusted to the same length so the quilts line up at the same height when being hung.

The quilts need to be arranged so that they compliment each other by subject or color and have a good visual flow.

My height comes in handy when it comes to the physical hanging, getting the hooks up over the drape rods above and clipping the quilt hanging rod in place. Then they all need to be adjusted so they have equal spacing and fine tune the distance above each quilt for any differentiation that occurs from where the hanging sleeve has been attached.



After the fastidiously serious business of hanging the exhibit a noodle fight broke out.  longbeach

It’s always fun catching up with old friends too, Katsy Chappell and I were on the board together when I belonged to the Glendale Quilt guild 8 years ago. This is a seriously funny woman who regularly does stand up comedy and she has now begun performing for Quilt groups too with quilting themed humor we can all appreciate.


Jamie and Leslie made this great banner to hang at the beginning of the exhibit so it will be easy to find on the show floor at any of the IQF venues.D@8

The exhibit is beautiful with a lot of wonderful quilts, it definitely drew a lot of attention at the show.

IMG_5534 IMG_5537 IMG_5538 IMG_5540
Yvonne Porcella with her quilt in the exhibit.

Me with my quilt Fear of FlyingFear of Flying


I love that it worked out my quilt ended up hanging next to Cheryl Sleboda and Kathy York’s work, they are all strong bold images that look great together.3quilts EM

It was such a treat to go to a quilt show just for fun, it has been years since I have had time to see the quilts and visit with friends, usually I’m running on overdrive from the moment I wake up, teaching all day, and then grabbing dinner with friends in the evening with out much opportunity to relax and soak it in.

Yvonne and Mistyfuse Irisyvonne and Iris

It was wonderful to see my dear friend Frieda Anderson, I miss my Chicago peeps.
Frieda and Judy

While Frieda and I were walking the show floor we ran into our friend Wendy Butler Berns from Wisconsin.Wendy, Frieda and Judy


Indigo worked with Iris in the Mistyfuse booth during the show. The booth was constantly mobbed with people which was wonderful to see, not only as a sign of a boost in the economy but also because I love seeing people switching to the best fusible on the market. IMG_5533


The fun didn’t stop when the show closed, it just moved to a new location, the hotel bar. It’s been fun getting to know the Sacramento area art quilters Jenny Lyons, Peggy Clark and Melinda Bula and catching up with them in Long Beach.


Iris, Leslie and Jamie
Iris, Leslie and Jamie
My time at festival ended with dinner friday night with fellow Exquisite Moment exhibit participants and then I drove back home Saturday to go to a party at my parents house.dinner @ 8

Bonnie McCaffery’s just posted her wonderful video interview from International Quilt festival in Houston last October with The Dinner @ 8 Rituals exhibit participants, where you can see several of the artists explain the inspiration for their work.

Next week I’m off to the midwest to teach at the American Quilters Society show in Grand Rapids Michigan.

9 Responses to “Field trip to International Quilt Festival Long Beach”

  1. Lisa Chin says:

    Thanks for sharing your fun field trip! I can see all the great fun I missed out on. 😉 I’m really sad it won’t be in Long Beach anymore but I hope to take the opportunity to go to other locations in the future. Where are the photos of Indigo?

    • Your welcome Lisa. Indigo is very particular about photos of herself, she prefers to be behind the camera instead of in front of it, so I only sneak in little ones of her once in a while.

  2. fiberartnow says:

    Thank you for sharing your exciting trip!

  3. allie aller says:

    Great post!!!
    I got to see Leslie at the Quilt Alliance board meeting and Not Fade Away conference in VA last month. She and Michele Muska gave a workshop on labeling quilts…and just seeing Leslie in action in the classroom made me want to spend much more time learning from her!
    Hope you all come to Portland next year for !QA’s new show…

  4. Diane Evans says:

    Hi, Judy —

    Love your following your blog and your work, and I have a question, if you don’t mind: When you use your acrylic inks, do you dilute them before applying them to the fabric? If so, what water-to-ink ration do you use to get such beautifully intense colors?

    And, any chance you’ll be coming to New York State to teach in the not-too-distant future???


    • Hi Diane,
      thanks! I use acrylic inks in a variety of ways depending on the look I am trying to achieve. So sometimes they are thinned with water or aloe vera and other times I use them full strength. If you thin them with water they will be lighter and have more of a tendency to bleed. When painting imagery I use them full strength. The 8 of Cups quilt and Black and Bloom all Over were painted with acrylic Inks. The quilt – Fear of Flying, that I’m posing with in the photo from Long Beach, was painted with textile paints.

      I have not been booked to teach on the east coast yet, but I’d love to. If you know of a guild in your area that might be interested in having me teach please submit my name to them, I’d be happy to make the trip.

  5. Phil Stone says:

    Love this blog!

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