What’s App?

    Using the new Quilt Market app at the upcoming Spring Quilt Market in Salt Lake City

Although Quilts Inc., the entity that holds the trade shows for the quilting industry, has had an app for its events since Fall 2013, the Market app was always in flux and sometimes didn’t suit all mobile devices. The learning curve for developing an app for such a huge event and helping sometimes not terribly tech-savvy show attendees navigate the event has finally smoothed out. The Spring Quilt Market app looks like a winner! The app is now easier to download and use, works on all mobile devices as well as a website, and is available through either the Apple Store or Google Play.

If you plan to attend Quilt Market by yourself, you can certainly simply download the app to your smart phone. But if you’re attending with employees in tow, it would be a good idea to download the app to a tablet. That way, more than one person can view the maps and instructions and your group can plan what to do and where to meet.

Rhianna Griffin of Quilts Inc--the app minder
Rhianna Griffin of Quilts Inc–the app minder

The app caretaker, Rhianna Griffin from Quilts Inc.’s marketing department, gave me some advice. She said, “I’d check out the About section of the app first. There’s tons of basic information there such as the main hotels and their phone numbers plus a few discounts that you can’t find anywhere else. Did you know that you can get a 10% discount on Super Shuttle (to/from the airport) when you book online and use the link from this site?”

The all-important credential requirements are also listed on this page and a complete schedule of Quilt Market events. Speaking of events: there’s a category for Schoolhouse, the sampler-type sales presentations that take place prior to the Market opening. All Schoolhouse sessions are listed by time and location as well as the title and sponsoring company. Under Classes/Events all the Take & Teach sessions, hour and a half how-to classes, are listed as well.

The Map section of the app is a godsend for those of us who are directionaly challenged. If you ask a local for directions, remember that every route in downtown Salt Lake is given in relation to the central location of Temple Square. And the convention center is a 10-12 minute walk south and west of Temple Square. The Show Map is a layout of the convention center itself and will be invaluable as you plan which exhibitors to visit and as you search for the nearest rest room.

Don’t think that downloading the app will give you every iota of information you might need at Quilt Market. One detail missing is noting which exhibitors are new at this Market. Experienced Market attendees know to search out the newest exhibitors first since bright ideas often come from fresh faces. That info is still in the printed program. Although the Exhibitors section lists each company’s website and phone number, there’s not an in-depth explanation of what goods/services each exhibitor offers. Since our industry adores cute names, you’re still going to have to refer to the printed program to find out what “Miss Bunny’s Farm Frolics” actually sells! When you click on the names of some exhibitors (especially pattern designers) practically all their products show up. But, many fabric companies withhold images of their brand spankin’ new lines since they want to make a splash at Market. You still need to visit the fabric companies’ booths to see the newest prints.

Market 2015 Fairfield booth
Market 2015 Fairfield booth

Don’t wait until you get to Quilt Market to download the app: do it now. Look over the information and get your game plan in place. If you like to post on social media while at Market, tell your peeps to watch your shop’s Twitter account. Twitter is listed on the Quilt Market app but neither Instagram nor Facebook since neither is app-designer friendly. And if you’re in the habit of being online 24-7, know that WiFi access at the Salt Lake convention center costs $15 a day per device. But, here’s my freebie tip of the day: there are some free WiFi spots at the convention center–try the meeting rooms and the lobby areas!

Looking forward to all of you stopping by the AQR booth (#1924). Talk with the staff and let them know what you think of the magazine and the app!

–Pepper Cory

Inspiration at the Diner

red neon sign at night - diner 200
Inspiration from the local diner.

Recently while eating at a diner, my attention was diverted by the napkin holder on the table. Folded paper napkins were jammed upright into the metal holder. Something clicked! I envisioned that napkin holder as a model for a pre-cut selection. Call it a “Diner Six-Pack.”

Orange napkins 200
A everyday item can take on a entirely new meaning.

At my next teaching venue I tested the theory and made up 72 Diner Six-Pack fabric selections. Each bundle contained six Fat Quarters sorted only by color. In three days of teaching I sold over 80% of my bundles. Only part of their attraction was the price ($15 for the bundle) but the folding of the fabrics where buyers could easily see all the offerings was another plus. When manufacturer-packaged pre-cuts are stacked for cutting, the top fabric is seen in full but the assortment must be rifled through to really see every pattern offered. How many times have your pre-cuts started to look ragged since curious customers cannot resist trifling with them?

How to make Your Own Diner Six-Pack Pre-Cuts

Choose six fabrics and cut into fat quarters. Make sure to include at least one solid (or a print that reads as a solid) in your Six-Pack color range. Fold as follows:

*Lay the fat quarter right side down with the cut 18” side toward you and the selvedge away from you.

*Fold the cut side in 1/3 of the way and follow by folding the selvedge edge over a third, covering the cut edge. Makes a long neat rectangle approximately 7” wide by 18” long.

*Turn the folded fabric clockwise on the table and fold again. Starting next to you, again fold a third in and followed by the third from the farthest side.

*The fabric is now a rectangle about 6” by 7”. Fold once in half like a little book, making sure all cut edges are neatly tucked in. Stack the ‘books’ of the different fabrics and arrange in a pleasing order.

*Cut a piece of card stock (recycled file folder works) in a rectangle 3” wide by 7 ½” long. Use a ruler to crease the card at 3” from each end. The 1 ½” (between the creases) in the middle of the card becomes the bottom that supports the fabrics upright, much like the bottom of the napkin holder. Stack the six FQ’s neatly within the card holder. You will need to also secure the bundle by cutting a 20” length of contrasting color ribbon or yarn, wrapping it around the bundle, and tying a bow.

We’d love to see your examples of folding fat quarters, whether this style or another. Post your pictures on our Facebook page.

fabric bundle 200
Fabric bundles ready for sale!

–Pepper Cory