The small city of Sisters, OR, presents an annual quilt festival each July. This is a dream destination for a lot of quilters and fiber artists. I was able to go once before on a bus tour, and promised myself that I would come back with Bob on our own schedule, not the tour schedule! Luckily, we were able to work this destination into our travel this summer. We didn't know very far ahead, so we didn't have a place to stay. Even with quite a number of private, city, county and federal camping areas around there, it took us some work to finally find a spot in Redmond, OR, about 20 miles from Sisters and 20 miles from Bend. It's actually called the Expo Center campground, because it's on the grounds of their outdoor entertainment facility and fairgrounds. And it's pretty nice, if you don't mind that there are no trees! We couldn't really be picky, so that's where we landed.
I spent one day, Friday, at the Sisters High School for a Sit and Stitch group. There are classes by internationally known designers for several days prior to the one-day show. There weren't any class openings on Friday, the only day I could be there, so the chance to sit down, stitch some wool applique, make new friends, and share ideas, was wonderful. Bob's not really much into stitching, although I have offered many times to teach him! And I've been missing the chance to do this as my own form of socialization during our trip.
The people in charge of this annual event are the owners of the Stitchin' Post right on the main street of Sisters. Jean Wells started the store and show quite awhile back, and now her daughter, Valeri, is the owner and leader. But they work together, along with many other people, to make this happen. They receive hundreds of quilts from all over the country to be displayed on the streets of Sisters for 1 day. Mostly they are hung outdoors, but some businesses have room indoors, too. Volunteers start at 7am to hang the quilts on ropes and lines and walls of buildings. It is all planned and choreographed in advance. The firemen volunteer to help hang the highest quilts with their trucks. Here's an example:
There are many, many quilts to admire, and I did try to take a lot of pictures. I have to explain that these are mostly hanging outdoors, some in sun, some in shade, some blowing, some obscured by people, so the pictures don't really do them justice. I added a few thoughts about why I liked them.
I also should explain the 2 pictures that are tied to a special Prince exhibit. Cherrywood Fabrics, made in MN, sponsors an annual quilt challenge. Click on the Cherrywood link to read all about it. They establish a theme and color scheme, using colors that they hand dye. This year the theme is Prince, as in the musician, not the royal. So the colors to be used were black and purple. They receive hundreds of quilts that are judged and juried into traveling displays throughout the year. One of those collections was on display in Sisters.
Next year's Cherrywood challenge theme is Bob Ross, the artist with the bushy hair on TV programs. He paints happy little trees, and I bet we will see some happy little quilts! Click this link to find out more about it. Those quilts are already judged, and will be touring in 2020.
I hope that someday, you, too, can visit Sisters for this event. It's great fun!
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Hi! I'm Pam! Join me on this journey through the next steps of life!