Paducah was absolutely fantastic! I uploaded a bunch of pictures of it to my Flickr account, but I still have to credit all the artists. It really does seem like the show has outgrown the venue in Paducah. The quilts are squeezed into a smallish expo space and it is hard to really experience them with all of the crowds as the aisles are small. In Chicago they have a very large convention center with plenty of open space so the quilts are displayed in gallery like areas instead of tight aisles. There are several exhibits all over town and in various separate areas of their expo spaces.
A big thing to do at the Paducah event is the tent show with Eleanor Burns of Quilt in a Day. Now that I am home, I wish we'd seen it, but at the time we felt on overload. We visited her shop and it was shoulder to shoulder crowded with enthusiastic quilters. We chatted in line with a quilter on a tour from Australia. She'd been to Chicago the previous week with her tour and had another show out west coming up.
Mom and I were there for 4 days. We found delicious restaurants and the town is charming. It was very challenging to find a hotel room, but Mom located a local hotel that was .. um... a throwback to the motor lodge experiences of yesteryear. The room was non-smoking, but the air system is all connected so we still had smoke blowing on us in the night. This kicked up our allergies so we tried to stay away from the room as much as possible. Since we stayed at a super cheap room I had more money to spend on fabrics!
For the quilt show, Hancocks of Paducah fills up a whole back area of their warehouse with large tables stacked high with one yard cuts of their designer fabrics. Each cut is just $5. When I visited the shop last year with my family in the winter I collected Kaffe Fasset and other coordinating prints and made this quilt as a gift for my mom.
Rifling through these piles was the most fun of anything we did. Busloads of travelers to the show stop at Hancocks to buy their yardage. I love fabric so much. This is a picture of the remnant room. Usually they only have two tables with remnants.
Sorry about my blurry photos. I didn't notice until I uploaded them..
I made a couple of Mothers Day things with the fabric I found here and I already regret not buying more!
Another must see is the National Quilt Museum. On display were 25 years of Best In Show quilts including large pieces and breathtaking miniatures. Unfortunately, the museum doesn't allow photographs.
My mom doesn't even quilt and she loved the show. She says she learned things about the artistry of quilting that she never realized before. I'm not sure we will be able to do this show again, but I am so happy to have experienced it! Paducah at any time of the year is worth a visit to see their riverfront town with shops and nice restaurants, the Quilt Museum, Eleanor Burns shop, and Hancocks of Paducah.