They don’t call it “Quilt Town” for nothing!

Quilt Town, USA mural in Hamilton, MO

It’s been a LONG TIME since I’ve been to a live event – Quilt Market in Houston, TX in October 2019 was the last one I think. Well that all changed last week as I headed to Hamilton, MO, about an hour or so outside of Kansas City, to go to the Missouri Star Birthday Bash.

I had heard a lot about Hamilton when I was in Houston as it happens. It was described as the “Disney for Quilters” and a must-see for anyone who loves fabric. It’s also referred to as Quilt Town, USA – and for good reason. So when I was invited to attend with my fabric licensee, Riley Blake Designs, I was in!

Well the rumors were true – it sure is quite a destination for fabric lovers and they came from everywhere.

I was so intrigued to learn where everyone was from and how long it took to get to this little town. There were 2 buses full of quilters on a 10 day Quilt Hop from Canada. Some drove 13 hours from Louisiana. There were attendees from every corner of the US and even a few from the UK.

I spent two days connecting with consumers, other vendors in the sewing space, the Missouri Star team and of course fellow Riley Blake Designs people including fabric and quilt pattern designer, Sandy Gervais.  I may have talked to more people in 3 days than I did in the past 3 years if I’m being honest!

We made a fabric and notions cake along with the wonderful people from Magic Fabric Care in competition with other vendors. I got to wander through the many themed fabric shops and just take it all in. 

It is always exciting to see my art on end products – in this case fabric – in stores. Missouri Star has my Gnomes in Love, Hanukkah, Winter Barn Quilts and the first release of my Monthly Placemat program in their shops.

The town buzzed with fun and an overarching passion for sewing. I’m so glad I was able to experience it all first hand.

While we have all figured out how to do business remotely – which I’ve basically done since 2004 – there is nothing like physically being in the same space. The conversations, connections and energy are invaluable. I came home both inspired and exhausted, my head full of new ideas for fabric designs.

The big question is what to do first!

👩🏻‍🎨 Tara Reed


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