Quilt Show Attendance

As I think about leaving next week for the AQS Show in Paducah, KY, thoughts run through my head about the show.  The quilts, the friends I’ll run into, what I might buy, what I see that I will think about buying but won’t buy.  It’s a long trip from here but shorter than some will have to make.

For nine years, we lived about 2 hours from Paducah and many of the quilters from our former town will be in Paducah so I’ll run into some of them there.  Anywhere I teach, no matter how far away, there’s always someone who will be attending the show so I’ll run into some of those nice people there.  Becky, who is my good friend from Kentucky will be meeting me there and we’ll room together.  It’s always fun to see her.  I’ll see Betty, who is the shop owner for what was my LQS when I was in KY.

What might I buy?  Hopefully not much fabric but you never know what might jump out and attach itself to me.  I will be looking for enough of the red dot to finish the binding on this quilt.  Some days I think I’ll buy a new sewing machine; some days I think I’ll wait til my old Bernina quits and some days I think I’ll just keep sewing on the Singer 301 machines and never buy a new machine.  What would make me buy a new machine?  If Bernina ever makes a machine with dual feed, just basic stitches, metal parts . . no doubt I’ll grab one of those.  For now, I can’t see paying for all the bells and whistles which, at this time, I have no desire to use.

If you were going to a big quilt show next week, what would you do?  Simply visit with friends?  Buy fabric?  Buy new gadgets?  Buy a big ticket item (like sewing machine, sewing table, longarm)?


  1. 1


    I AM going to the big quilt show next week. I am going to look for new lines of fabric that I can’t get here in my LQS.. Also any kind of new notion that someone demonstrates. I am a sucker for a notion.. I love to look at the quilts and get inspiration, especially like to look at the miniatures and get close to the quilting..

    I also like to visit the Bernina booth and see if they have any new attachments for my 440..

  2. 2


    I went to MQX today….I bought some threads, a magnifying light, a quilt halo and that slipppery sheet that goes on the machine. I want to try some thread painting. I tried out all the long arms and had fun looking at all the quilts. It was a great day spent with a good friend.

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    Since market hasn’t happened yet and no new fabric out there, I’d look for patterns and notions/gadgets. And inspiration!!

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    If I were going, I’d look for YOU!!! I’d love to meet you. I, too, am a sucker for notions. I’d have to be in love with a fabric to buy any of it and have a specific use for it. I wish I were going…..

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    I wish I could even dream of going to Paducah or Houston. Have fun for me. I’d buy some FQ’s or maybe a new pattern. Last Quilt show I bought a new shirt that says, “Sewn with Love in the USA”.

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    I am going too and about a dozen of us are travelling together. We plan on laughing a lot, leaving our troubles behind as much as possible, eating some good food and just letting ourselves be surrounded by the beautiful quilts and quilters. Oh, and margaritas.

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    Aside from looking at the quilts, I like visiting with friends and especially meeting blog friends for the first time. I always love shopping and like to look for things that I can’t already find at my fab LQS.

  8. 8

    Lydia says

    I’ve been to Paducah once, in 2004. I keep thinking I’ll go back, but this time of year is often complicated for me, and I haven’t gotten back there yet. What I did that year was to look for the vendors that I only see at shows, and see what new, exclusive-to-them things there were. I also checked out the new notions and tools — and because I was still in the aftermath of chemo at the time, and low on energy (and with a friend who’s older and was also low on energy), spent a fair bit of time sewing in the room. I didn’t even scratch the surface of all there was to see, but I had a great time! And that, above all, is what you should do, Judy — have a great time! Whatever that is for you.

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    bettyp says

    I know you will have fun !! wish I lived a bit closer to it .Have heard great stories about it !! Maybe one day….

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    Well I AM going since I live only about 1 hour away and mostly I’ll look at the fabulous quilts. I will likely buy some fabric but not much. I definately need thread. I also need bobbins for my Voyager.

    I don’t know of anything else I have been waiting to get but I will def. price shop on some other items but since I’m in the middle of moves, no furniture this year like I really want. I want a nice sewing table so… one day. 🙂

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    My sister is going to Paducah so I would be having a good time with her! She lives the St. Louis area.

    I like to look at the quilt displays, especially to study the quilting, notions, kits, new fabric lines, and always the antique quilt booths to marvel at all the UFO tops that never became quilts.

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    I’m going to Paducah also. My quilt was juried in and since that’s something that doesn’t happen too often (like never), I’m going to visit it. I’m looking to buy thread and a thimble. I’m a gadget junkie so if something jumps out at me, I’ll be a sucker and buy it.

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    Sandy K says

    I will not be there but three planes from Rockford IL will be making 3 day trips to Paducah .Leave in early am and will return that night after the show closes. We have many very excited ladies that will have a chance to go to the show.

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    If money was not an issue, I’d test drive all the long arms and buy one.
    But since it is, I would buy a little more fabric.

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    Visit and view quilts, then buy GADGETS. I LOVE gadgets of all sorts. But that will have to wait until another year.

    Hopefully next year I will have a quilt in one of the big shows and then I will have a good reason to travel that far. I just did not have the inspiration this year to work on another show quilt.


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    Oh you have made me so nostalgic tonight!

    I was able to attend the show in Paducah for years… it was a long drive but we all loved making it! I went as a quilter, as an exhibitor, as a model for the Fairfield Show and subsequently as a designer for it too! I was lucky enough to be there when a good friend won a blue ribbon for her miniature quilt! She didn’t even want to enter! I twisted her arm and took the slides for her entry! Oh BOY was THAT a fun trip!

    I cannot attend this year and I am sad… I do hope that you will share lots of pictures! They even erected a huge blow up arena this year just to fit it all in!

    I wait with baited breath….

  17. 18

    Jo says


    If I end up in Paducah, I’m with Julie – looking for you! Right now, I should be in Paris w/ DH celebrating one of those big ol birthdays.(mine) …but that darn volcano erupted, and if we can’t get out by Tuesday, we will be headed to Paducah! A girl has to have some fun on that bday!

    Not to complain – I’ve always wanted to see this show. But if its quilts and not croisants, I want to find a few patterns I wouldn’t find at home and a few notions I might not buy otherwise. And fabric – tho not too much – will find its way home.


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    Darlene S says

    I will be at Paducah this year for 4 days!! I plan to soak in the quilting on a bunch of quilits. I don’t need anything right now and since I’m new at long arming, I’m saving my $ for the MQS show next month in KC area. I do like notions that save time or simple tricks into complicated designs. I WILL be checking in with you at your booth, if I can remember when you are there. Guess I’d better write it down, huh?
    See you soon. Dar

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    I am going to Paducah…I plan to spend time with family (my mom, sis and aunt are all going). I will test drive all the mid arm machines to daydream about replacing my Voyager.

    Most likely I’ll buy thread, take tons of pictures and probably pick up a little bit of fabric.

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    Deb says

    I am heading off to the Rosemont/Chicago one tomorrow. Have never been to a big show, so am excited to see the quilts, find some patterns (if there are any vendors left) meet some designers (unfortunately not you) and maybe SOME fabric. Oh, try some long arms, and maybe get some gadgets. And just see what pops up!
    Hubby is coming with to keep me under control…

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    Okay, now I really do feel like I am living on the moon… WHAT happened to the Executive Inn that necessitated the blow up arena???

    Spill girls, SPILL!!!

  22. 23

    Bonnie B says

    Hi all – I live in Paducah and we are very busy setting up the show so it will be ready for all of you to visit. The quilts are being judged today and tomorrow…wait until you see them – they are beautiful!

    And, Jo, who might not be able to get to Paris for her “big” birthday, I can’t think of a more fun place to be than in Paducah for that b’day.

    Judy, please do find me sometime next week and say hello. It’s been a while since we visited at your retreat at the Lake.

    And to answer the question someone had about the Executive Inn, it closed after the 2009 AQS Quilt Show. The city of Paducah has now purchased the hotel and it will be torn down. They will be seeking a new developer to build a high-rise style new hotel next to the convention center. The new Dome Pavilion was set up with the vendor booths and exhibit area today…and you all are going to love how spacious it is with lots of light coming through the ceiling.

    See you all in Paducah next week….

    • 23.1

      Ida says

      There’s always Paris, TN .. just an hour or two south of Paducah. They have an Eiffel Tower and everything!

      And when I was there a few years ago, there was a huge community parade/carnival/fish fry during Quilt Show Week.

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    Elaine says

    See you Monday! I can’t wait! Hey, you wanna drive my Honda over the bridges? Just Kidding – NO way would I let you do that!! Haha!

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    Evelyn says

    I would go and look and look at all the quilts! I would buy a fat quarter tower for sure because I love a tower and it is a real splurge. I would buy one of your books too. And I would go out to eat. Oh – and a new 12.5″ and maybe 1 bigger square ruler for squaring up my blocks because mine got broken in my suitcase when I came over here. And if there was a workshop I am interested in – I would love to take a workshop. I have never taken any kind of workshop. Have fun Judy – I am sure lots of people will stop by and see you! Cheers! Evelyn

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    Karen says

    I’m staying home this year – if I was going I’d no doubt bring home more gadgets – I love those things – I’d also be looking at mid-arm quilting machines – wish I had room for one.

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    pdudgeon says

    in my dreams i would grab the strawberries and whipped cream first thing! LOL.
    then i would of course drop by your booth to get the new book and chat, and find Eleanor’s tent show and view that as well, picking up a couple of her books.
    And as long as I’m dreaming, i would pick up a new 19 inch long arm machine and a bunch of new pantos from Keryn to go with it. Oh, and a new iron as well since mine doesn’t steam any more.
    And then i would head off to find a vendor who sells Lecien fabrics and pick up about 5 yards of fabric for a quilt backing.

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    Ida says

    I’m a sucker for sales. If it’s a machine that I’d be purchasing in the near future anyway, I’d be sure to look for a big deal at Paducah.

    Fabric … Elanor Burns fabric tents. And Elanor Burns show … Oh my!

    Otherwise, I’d just marvel at the quilts and look for inspiration.

    When I went, I came home with a lot of fabric (mostly from Elanor, but also a lot from Hancocks of Paducah). I even hit a few of the local stores and purchased some notions and even a small quilt for my then, yet to be born sex-unknown, niece.

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    Marla Southers says

    I live about an hour and 45 minutes away and plan to go Friday and Saturday. Plan to go Friday by myself, hope I can find parking. Satureday, DH will go with me and plan to drool over the long arms. By the way, can anyone tell me just how much room I will need to have to put one? DH say you have to have 6 ft clearance on both sides but I would think would not be necessary?

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    Marilyn Smith says

    Judy, visiting with you would be at the top of my list. Also, checking out the new Bliss setup from APQS. Sure sounds interesting. Thread, how I love Superior threads. Gadgets…they sure are fun. And, to top it off – looking at al the beautiful quilts. Visiting and meeting online quilty friends. Have a blast! Wish I could be there and MQS as well!

  30. 32

    Denise says

    I haven’t been to the Paducah show in a number of years but Judy I know you are really going for the Boyscouts strawberry shortcakes! Do they still do those? Yum. My downfall wasn’t necessarily the show vedors, tho many did get my money, it was walking into Hancocks and fabric overload. LOL I’m so miffed at myself that I forgot about the AQS Chicago show this weekend but my checkbook is probably relieved. The whole atmosphere is such fun. Course I’d be looking for you — to short sheet your bed. 🙂

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    Lynne in Hawaii says

    That would be an awesome dream for me…but then I have Hawaii:-)

    Do I see DIMPLES jumping off shelves for you?? Hummmm? Shades you don’t yet have? Have a great time!