I enjoyed the festival in 2012 and was looking forward to it again in 2013. On Friday I was alone visiting the festival so I had lots of time to stroll through all the exhibitions at my own pace and spend time revisiting the areas I was most interested in. I also met lots of familiar faces from the IPS throughout the day and enjoyed catching up with you all!
My favourite exhibitions were the Hoffmann Challenge, Cornucopia, The Prison quilts and the Graffiti quilts. But to be honest I found something to appreciate in other exhibitions such as Playground, Water, Mantality and more.
I was personally pleased to see 'Spring has Sprung' in the Playground exhibition, which I made in collaboration with the 2nd and 3rd class pupils of Dunmore National School, as part of the CRAFTed project. Loretta O'Brien may bring it to the Quilt Festival in Birmingham in August, which would be a further thrill for these young pupils!
I also felt there was more choice amongst the stalls in the Traders Hall this year. Even though my spending budget wasn't big I enjoyed looking, admiring and buying just a small selection of fat quarters for my stash.
On Saturday my Dublin friends came with me and were happy with the exhibitions and their purchases. I volunteered on the IPS stand and enjoyed talking about our guild to Irish and International visitors. My sister and my niece joined me on Sunday and they were very glad they saw it all.
The weather on all 3 days was glorious, but perhaps that didn't work to the traders advantage as people spent a lot of time outside around the grounds. The warm weather may also have proved difficult for those with mobility issues as there is a lot of walking between exhibition venues on campus.
My overall experience at the festival was very positive and I spent 3 very happy days in quilt heaven!
I believe next year the festival will move elsewhere in Ireland and will also include fibre arts and other crafts. I'm sure this makes sense to continue to attract visitors from abroad, but I for one will miss having this festival on my doorstep. Never mind, I've been spoiled for 2 years and I don't mind a bit of travel to see this standard of international work in Ireland. Roll on 2014!
Brink of Sunset
Hanna Grete Brink
Paula O' Rafferty
Maynard David Taylor
Portrait of Troy
Gail Thomas, Helen Godden, Annette
South William St Angel
Spring Has Sprung
Dunmore National School
These are just a sample of some of my favourite quilts at the Exhibition,