Thursday, February 27, 2020

Bye-Bye Bloglovin', and QuiltCon

Bye-Bye Bloglovin'
If you are reading this blog post, thank you! Today (Thursday, February 27) I made the decision to REMOVE my blog from Bloglovin' and close my account with Bloglovin'. I'm sorry to have done that if you use Bloglovin as your blog-reader. But after figuring out that in ONE week, 11 of my "new followers" were using fake names (often, "Bloglover") and promoting sex sites, I was fed up. Bloglovin' does not provide any way of blocking perverts, and I've put up with it for years. Enough is enough.

Thank you for being here on your own!

To QuiltCon and Back
So... I was away from home for less than a week, but it felt like so much longer! On the other hand, the days passed in a blink!

I traveled by car to QuiltCon in Austin, Texas, where I stayed four nights in a time-share arranged by a friend. Five of us stayed in the Railyard Condos, directly across the street from the Austin Convention Center. It was a handy location! I could see the convention center doors from my loft window, and was a quick run across the street when it rained!

Pictures make the place look charming, but it had plenty of "honey-dos" that needed doing. We were on the third floor. No elevators. We climbed a lot of stairs. Hauling a suitcase up/down that spiral staircase wasn't easy.

But we agreed that the convenience was a nice trade-off. So close to the show. And lectures. And classes. Even a quick run to the condo for an apple and power bar was nice.

This is the Best of Show quilt called "Starring You" by Peter Byrnes of Toronto Canada. I had a chance to visit with him about his quilt and he told me that he domestic machine quilted it on a Janome machine, and tracked 200 hours of quilting. At one point he said he threw the whole quilt on the floor of the closet because he was sick of it. It pays to persevere, right? I am telling myself that after how many hours of quilting my temperature quilt?!

This is Peter with another of his award-winning quilts called "Cityscape." It won Best Machine Quilting: Frameless.

This is Marla Varner of @pennylanequilts who I also had a chance to visit with. Her quilt, "For the Love of Squircles" won Quilting Excellent Award and is entirely hand-appliqued and big stitch hand quilted.

This is Marla's quilt from the back.

I took my beloved Canon S100 camera with me to QuiltCon (QC), and only managed to take two pictures before the camera stopped working. I was glad to have my iPhone as back-up even though the picture quality isn't as good as the Canon. I'm not exaggerating when I say I took more than 300 pictures at QuiltCon! Therefore, I'm finding it difficult to pick and choose the quilts I want to share.

This quilt really attracted my attention. "Triangle Color Study III" was made by Nicholas Ball @quiltsfromtheattic of the UK. About a week before QC, he started an Instagram #improvtrianglesewalong. Some gorgeous quilt tops are appearing! I'd love to give this improv design a try.

Here's a detail photo. Tiny matchstick quilting was in abundance at QC. 

Another favorite is "Let's Get Loud" by Kathryn Upitis @kupitis, a doctor who lives in Canada. Love the quilt name and that she received a third place award in improv.

Our Central Florida MQG participated in the QuiltCon Charity Quilt Challenge, and managed a meet-up to get a group picture in front of our quilt. You can read more about our quilt here

Lots of other MQG chapters made quilts too. Quilts could be only black/gray/white (no color), include words, and be made in designated dimensions. 

Hands down, the best quilt in the display was made by the Tulsa (Oklahoma) MQG. It's "A Day in the Life of a Quilter" and is meant to be "read" beginning at the upper left-hand corner. I read the quilt several times, giggling more each time. It's just clever!
The lightening bolt and wink at the end... 😂

I saw a lot of "old" friends, who I'd met at previous QCs, and new quilters I "know" through Instagram... and forgot to take pictures of most of them! I was so caught up in conversations that taking a photo never occurred to me. Thankfully, my California friend Elizabeth, who blogs at, suggested a picture together. Our chat time was way too brief, Elizabeth!

When I met up with @mtweedel, another Instagramer who's from Texas, we chatted our way through the quilts, and suggested taking a picture of me with my quilt. Thank you, Melissa! What a coincidence that I dressed like my quilt that day! I'm now very grateful to have this picture because... my quilt was purchased! Yes! Entrants can indicate whether a quilt is NFS (not for sale), or put a price on it. "L Cabin" was bought by an Australian! I'm tickled that someone liked it enough to buy it, and the money will cover the cost of my new Canon SX620 camera! Isn't it funny how some things just work out? Win-win.

I attended several wonderful lectures presented by: Heather Black @quiltachusetts; Steph Skardal @stephskardal; Maritza Soto; Victoria Findlay Wolfe @victoriafindlaywolfe; Teresa Duryea Wong; and Mary Fons @yomaryfons and her mother, Marianne. For a couple years, I worked for Marianne and Liz Porter, when they were publishing Love of Quilting magazine in Winterset, Iowa. It was especially interesting to listen to this mother-daughter team talk through the changes in quiltmaking. Their lecture was: 50 Years of Quilting in America. (Yes, that's an open wine bottle and wine glasses on the table between them.)

As I was leaving the lecture hall, who should I see but Liz Porter (on the left). Apparently she lives in Austin, and was hosting a mutual Des Moines friend, Lynn W. They were rushing out for a dinner reservation, so we didn't have any chat time, but Lynn suggested taking a picture. I haven't seen either of these women for at least 17 years! This is another of the reasons I adore QC... unexpected meet-ups.

If you've been following my blog for a while, you know that in 2018 I made an improv quilt based on then-eight year-old grandson Austin's artwork. I entered "Owl Always Love You" into QC in 2019 and 2020, and the quilt was rejected both times. 

This visit to Austin was the perfect time to finally deliver the quilt to Austin who is 10 years old now. He was thrilled about getting it. and asked questions about how it was made. I read the quilt label to him. 

He agree to let me keep the artwork that inspired the quilt. (This pic was taken in 2018.)

He wanted to sleep under it as soon as I gave it to him. Thinking about this, I'm just warm and fuzzy all over.

I'll soon write another blog post about my impressions of QC quilts... like that so many of the quilts included big stitch quilting. In the meantime, go here to see pictures of all the award-winning quilts. I think you'll agree that they're wonderful! Linda


Susie Q said...

I signed up by email..... hope it all goes thru as I sure would hate to loose your blog. And I look forward to the rest of Quilt Con.......

Susan said...

I never used Bloglovin for more than about a month. I still scroll through my Blogger reading list to get up-to-date notification of new blogposts. I love little Austin's quilt and his love for it too!

Debbie said...

Appreciate seeing some shots from QC. I adore Marla's quilt!!! And I would have loved seeing Peter's and Nicholas' and and and.... and I would have loved hearing from Mary Fons & her mom. Glad you had a good time!!

KatieQ said...

Thanks for sharing some Quilt Con highlights. I love the Triangle Color Study.
The picture of Austin with his quilt is priceless.

Lindsey F. said...

Hi Linda. I hope you will still be blogging, just not using Bloglovin. I have been following your blog for several years and will bookmark your site so I can still see your posts if you are going to continue blogging.

Quilting Babcia said...

I tried to remove my blog from bloglovin a year ago and kept getting some computerese mumbo jumbo about everything I'd ever posted being deleted forever. Not understanding a word of it I finally left my blog but continue to use comment moderation so no unsavory comments get through, at least as far as I know. Theroblem of being 70+ and relatively computer illiterate. I've always loved your Owl Always Love You, I'm glad to see your sweet grandson has his quilt now!

Shasta Matova said...

Thank you for sharing QuiltCon photos and impressions. Congratulations on your sale. Your grandson's quilt is so precious, and I am so glad he loves it as much as he does.

Rosemary B❤️ said...

Linda, you are so adorable. You are tiny like me. Well, I am 5'6 but I am tiny too. Anyway, you are adorbs.
I love all of your quilts that you have made. There is no special place in Heaven for people who get a quilt in Quilt Con.
I am happy you had fun. That condo looks terrible. haha I just really hate those kind of stairs. (long story)
Austen looks superb underneath his beautiful quilt.
I hope you framed his art work

Robbie said...

Thanks for the tour of the show....I got to see some beautiful pieces and didn't have to leave the couch! I went to Peter's web site..loe his garden quilt! His work is outstanding....thanks again.

Anorina @SameliasMum said...

Thanks for sharing your quiltcon highlights. I absolutely love Marla's quilt and really enjoyed seeing her progress with it on Instagram. As you said, perseverance is key.

I'm so glad that Austin loved his quilt and wanted to sleep under it that night. So cute!!

Farm Quilter said...

I'm so glad I follow you via email. I really don't like Bloglovin. Love the pictures of the quilts, but the one with Austin under this artwork in a quilt is the best!!

Nancy said...

What a great trip! I was at Daytona and saw your two quilts on display. I spotted them right off. Quite a few people had come to Daytona right after Quilt Con. I heard so many positive things about the Austin show. One of them was most impressed with the gray charitable quilts. Doesn't the time fly by at the shows- you think you'll catch up with friends, but before you know it, you've missed the chance with everyone's classes, lectures, and timing so different! Look forward to more of your coverage of the show.

Anne / Springleaf Studios said...

WaHoo! Congrats on the sale of your quilt. That's pretty cool. Glad you had a good time at QuiltCon and got to see so many people. Thanks for the heads up about Bloglovin. Not sure I really wanted to know this. One more reason I find myself considering withdrawing (or certainly minimizing) my online life. uggg.

Oops-Lah said...

Wow, what an array of beautiful quilts (including yours of course). I was also mesmerised by the Triangle Colour Study III and have been looking at it again and again. I see different things each time; at first I thought they were houses in a city, then trees in the woods. I'm sure it was great to see it in real life. By the way the the link for Nicholas Ball is wrong, it's supposed to be @quiltsfromtheattic and not @quiltsintheattic

KaHolly said...

Great post, Linda! It was so nice to see you for a few minutes. I couldn’t believe we never thought to take a picture!

Sue said...

Fabulous quilt show Linda, even though I am/was a traditional quilter, I am slowly starting to really like some of the modern quilts. I really love the quilt you made Austin, and its even better for you, that he loves it.

Patti P said...

I've been trying to get rid of the bloglover and gang for awhile. Can't find a fix and yes Bloglovin offers no help or even a reply. Good luck.

FlourishingPalms said...

Hi Patti! I wish I could reply to you by email, but your Google profile is set to "no-reply commenter" so I'm forced to reply here and hope you see it! I followed Bloglovin's instructions to 1) disconnect my blog from Bloglovin'; and 2) deactivate my Bloglovin' account. I thought that was all I needed to do, but then a friend checked for me and said she can still read my blog through Bloglovin' and see my followers, including those with fake accounts who promote links to sex-related websites (the reason I left Bloglovin'). I have recently emailed information and a request to Bloglovin' to unlink my blog from their service. I hope I receive a reply. Other than that, I don't know what else to do!


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