You may remember my deliberations about going to the retreat last year, you can read about it here in case you missed it.  There were all sorts or mental gymnastics to get there and  I’m so glad I went.  I then decided to set another challenge for myself, after nearly 30 years, I was going to get to a quilt show!

Now quilt shows come with a whole new set of challenges. It’s not only getting there, it’s the parking, the crowds and having nowhere to escape if it all becomes too much.  There was no way I would be able to do this on my own so I was delighted when a friend said they were going to the quilt show at Malvern.  I asked if I go with her and booked my ticket.  As she is a seasoned visitor, it made for a very easy visit.

To get there early, I left Sheffield at half six and did the two hour journey down to near Dudley. Having met up with my friend and fueled with a cup of tea, I was passenger for journey to Malvern.  As we arrived just after it opened, our parking space was relatively close to the front of the public parking. There were no crowds to fight through which meant I felt comfortable entering into the show.  This was just as well as I had left my ticket at home.  My son sent me a photo so I could show it on the door and I am so grateful that the doorman let me in. Now, I could just concentrate on what was before me.

While it was still early and the crowds were relatively light, we visited all the stalls.  There was so much inspiration around and I did treat myself to a few bits and pieces. I have other bits already put aside for specific occasions, but I was relatively restrained. After a couple of hours we were ready to take a break and off we went for an early lunch.  Early lunch meant the tent was almost empty and it was perfect for recharging the batteries.

After lunch, we went back into the tent to see the quilts on display.  They were a real inspiration and it would have been lovely to have details of the makers on each one.  Everyone that entered quilts deserve a pat on the back for all their hard work, I loved taking in all the different details and came away inspired.  I just need to find some extra time.

In reflection, here are my tips for the anxious quilter wanting to go to a show: 1-choose one of the smaller shows and go with a friend. 2-go early and arrive just as it’s opening. 3-visit the stalls first before they get crowded so you can enjoy looking at what’s on offer, if you can, chat with the stall holder, many are happy to share their experiences. 4-don’t try to do it all at once, go for an early lunch and come back and do a bit more. 5-the area displaying the quilts provide a relatively quiet oasis, go there when it gets busy and take in the beauty. 6-leave when the biggest crowds arrive.  We left early afternoon as a lot of coaches arrived, our timing was perfect and I can honestly say, I enjoyed my day out.

Now I can enjoy my purchases.  I’ll definitely come back and share them with you as soon as I can.