Sept-Oct 2003

Marti's Journal

Take a peek at Marti's Journal pages to see what she has been doing recently. You can see that she is busy. Marti has promised to try and update this page every 6 - 8 weeks. So many people want to know about her schedule and activities, it is hard to imagine why we didn't add this feature sooner. Hope you like it.

On The Road Again
Here I sit on September 11, 2003, in the Sacramento, CA airport waiting for a flight to Portland, OR. It is impossible to eliminate the thoughts of two years ago that weigh heavily on us all, but I work hard to balance them positively. Travel is much more difficult now than before, especially for those of us who usually travel alone and have two huge suitcases of quilts, never mind clothes, etc. To me, it is still worth it. I love meeting quilters around the world and enjoy sharing their enthusiasm and love of quilting!

Tuesday evening, September 9, I presented my " I lead Two Lives Trunk Show to the Folsom Quilters in Folsom, CA. In order to get a direct flight from Atlanta, I arrived early and there was free time on Tuesday afternoon. Barbara Victorino, the program chairman, had picked me up at the airport, and after a nice lunch she asked if I would like to go to the antique quilt show at the Folsom Historical Society in Old Folsom. What a treat! It was a small show, but featured very nicely selected quilts. The show also included vintage garments, which was unusual and nice. I understand this is an annual event in September and October. The meeting itself was in a beautiful community center with a great stage, lights and speaker system. Every quilt and speaker should be so lucky! On Wednesday we had an enthusiastic full day workshop.

Wednesday evening, I was able to meet Sally Paul for dinner. Those of you who knew us during the Yours Truly, Inc. years (1972-1985) will probably remember Sally. She did lots of designing and teaching for Yours Truly. The product she designed and wrote that you are most likely to remember is the book, "Creative Fabric Frames," a best seller! She also did garments for several Fairfield Fashion Shows. Friends since 1978, we had not seen each other for several years, but as it should be with good friends, it seemed like we had seen each other the day before. I'm happy to report that she looks great and is the same fun, wonderful person.

In Portland, I'll be teaching and exhibiting at the E. E. Schenck Trends Show (wholesale only) but I have to admit that I look forward most to the promise that Dick is meeting me there and our son Jeff , his wife Carol and their boys, Carter and Conrad, will drive down from Seattle and meet us.

This journal entry should have started in August. The first week of August, two Florida Guilds had invited me down. I decided to drive rather than fly, because it is so much easier to take lots of samples and pack each class in a separate suitcase, etc. I was doing six different classes or lectures.

The Cabin Fever Guild in Orlando had three workshops with only a couple of openings and an evening meeting. Then the Lake City Guild which meets every Tuesday invited me to lecture in the morning and do a half-day workshop in the afternoon. I admit I was tired when I got home.

August 10 - 16 I was in Denver for the Pfaff Convention, teaching and learning. I have been sewing on Pfaff machines since 1981, starting with the 1222, then 1471, 1475, 7570, and in the last few months on the 2140. Well, in Denver we were introduced to the 2144, an upgrade of 2140. WOW! I have to find more time to learn more of the capabilities of that machine! The convention was downtown, so the last afternoon, Susan Cleveland and I walked over to the State Capitol building - a treat in itself, but with a bonus - the state ( I think) quilt show was hanging. Beautiful quilts filled the balconies. It was just wonderful.

The next week was a very welcome week at home, punctuated by my birthday - a big one! Then it was off to Nashville to the AQS show. I pawned off the booth setup so I only spent four days there and got to say hello to many people I've had in classes and also to meet lots of new quilters. One evening, Liz Porter and Marianne Fons and I got to enjoy a late dinner. Dick and I published their first book back in 1982, and we love seeing how successful they are!

Thursday, September 4, I picked up Stacy Michell, our daughter and owner of Shades Hand Dyed Textiles, and we went to the airport to fly to Cleveland. Stacy and I had both been invited to do guest appearances on the new "America Quilts Creatively" TV show and filming was in Cleveland. It is a new PBS-offered show whose major underwriter is Pfaff. The hosts are Karen Good and Sue Hausman. Stacy was sharing highlights of her "All Around Appliqué" patterns and my contribution was basic techniques for machine piecing curves in patchwork. (We now have six template sets with curved pieces - Giant Dahlia, Drunkards Path. Winding Ways, Sunburst, Dresden Plate and coming soon -- Double Wedding Ring.) The taping went very well. It was nice that, even though we will be on different shows, we were able to tape on the same day. The people were great to work with and we enjoyed our time with several other show guests as well. Before coming home on Saturday, Stacy and I took time to revisit the Chagrin Falls and Hudson, Ohio area. We had lived there before moving to Atlanta in 1969.

In the "I'm Easily Amused" Category
While looking for something else, I came across the word "chiasmus," which led me to this fun web site. If you enjoy playing with words I think you will find this link fun to explore www.chiasmus.com.

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September 16
Back home, but not in the office...this was the weekend for the East Cobb Guild's Quilt Show in Marietta, GA. The show is held every other year and, has been our habit for several shows, Stacy and I shared a booth. The truth is that we both have too much product to share a single booth! Her studio is just a few blocks from the show location and, as usual, she had open studio hours. Shows in your hometown are almost more difficult than out-of-town, because you still try to spend time at the office and at home. Anyway, it was a very nice show, the weather was beautiful, and we had fun seeing local quilting friends.

On the road again...
Friday the 26th I was off to Fremont, Nebraska. I flew into Omaha, where Leslie Main, representing the Prairie Piecemakers, met me. She asked if I would like to stop at a quilt show - she didn't need to ask! In fact, very near the airport was Omaha's brand new convention center called Qwest Center and the first event to be held there, the River City Roundup, included a very nice quilt show. It also included, on the first floor of the convention center, a cattle, sheep, pig and chicken show! The local folk were having a lot of fun kidding that "Only in Omaha" would they christen a convention center with cow poop and I joined right in. However, I knew that it would be just as likely to happen in my home state of Iowa. Actually, I have a long Iowa State Fair history and always loved going to farm fairs, so this was a fun stop. I saw two things I had never seen. The sheep were dressed in very sporty looking Spandex - I remembered little muslin type coats used to keep the straw, etc. out of the wool before entering the show ring. Then in the poultry area there were chickens who had just been shampooed, and their feather dressers were using hair dryers in both hands to blow dry the feathers!

We had three really nice classes and on Monday night I spoke at the Guild meeting. More lovely weather, but I did experience my first frost for the year. (Here in Georgia we are, of course, weeks from frost!) My hostess in Fremont was Sara Dillow. We have been acquaintances for several years, but while staying in her beautiful home and talking too late, we discovered we shared an unbelievable amount of common background and interests. It was a real treat. As a bonus, on Monday morning I had free time and Sara drove me over to Lincoln, NE to visit the International Quilt Study Center and meet some of the staff and graduate students there. On the way back, we bought lunch in Wahoo, Nebraska. Just in case you don't keep up, Wahoo is David Letterman's current "home office." (It is amazing the experiences a traveling quilt teacher can share!)

I got home Tuesday and left Thursday on a driving trip to Charleston, West Virginia. I had not really intended to drive, but had failed to remember to get a plane ticket and got caught without the 14-day advance. The price Delta was charging for 13 days made me say "I'll drive, thanks!" It was not a bad drive and I did stop and buy some fabric - you can't do that on an airplane now can you? My invitation was from the West Virginia State Guild. There were two workshops and a trunk show presentation. There meeting place was just a couple of blocks from the State Capitol building and, since I have a certain passion for seeing state capitols, I asked to peek in. It is very pretty, but the highlight was an oddity. The 2000-pound chandelier in the rotunda had been lowered to the floor for cleaning and repair. My hosts were Graham and Leslie Sabol, and while I have had many lovely experiences as a guest, this was the first time the host had left work early to come home and cook a gourmet dinner. I promised Graham if I ever get my chiasmus quilt made, the block that says, "Do you eat to live or live to eat?" will be dedicated to him.

Got home just in time to rather quietly celebrate Dick's big birthday.

With mixed emotions, I had decided to stay home the weekend of October 9-12. I had hoped to have time to go to the American Quilt Study Group annual event - held this year in Dallas. It is a great group and while I have been a member since AQSG was founded, I have only been able to attend a few meetings as the meeting date is always so close to Quilt Market and Festival in Houston and I am always involved in last minute details for Market.

In this editions easily amused department....
Have you noticed that since I started this journal I have been in six state capital cities? Denver, Nashville, Sacramento, Lincoln, Charleston and of course, Atlanta.

Another geographic highlight - In Portland I was invited to go on the E.E.Schenck outing on the Willamette River. The ship's captain said that the Willamette is only one of four rivers in the Northern Hemisphere that flows South to North. He couldn't remember the others. That always drives me crazy; naturally, I want to know all four rivers. We figured out the St. Lawrence and the Nile and then someone who plays Trivia came up with the Ob (Russia) - well, that was four. However, in Charleston, my host pointed out the Kanawha river that flows North. So who knows the answer?

It is true... I like geography almost as much as geometry!

Happy Quilting,

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Marti Michell

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