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Thread: quilt show in Huston, Nov 2018

  1. #1
    Super Member mtkoldra's Avatar
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    quilt show in Huston, Nov 2018

    we have new friends in Huston, TX, who are inviting us and another couple to stay in their house and us girls going to the quilt show. Sounds like fun but after looking at the show's web site I am afraid to be overwhelmed with it and miss some good things. Any suggestions, from you who went in previous years, how to plan going to the show. I do not think that I want to take any classes, maybe taking some lecture at most.
    thank you

  2. #2
    Super Member thimblebug6000's Avatar
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    It is huge, we didn't have long enough for it all. If I went again, I would do the Merchant Mall a different day, as it very exhausting.
    Watch out for people who have rented electric scooters and are stearing through crowds for their first time, ouch!
    At the CQA show in Vancouver I met people who had rented walkers, even though they didn't really "need" them so they could stop and rest often and had a place to put all their shopping bags.

  3. #3
    Super Member cashs_mom's Avatar
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    I live in Houston and go every year. It is huge. One day will not be enough if you are all quilters. There is just too much to see. The classes are amazing. However, if you are not staying downtown, getting to them is a hassle. Traffic here is crazy and not for the feint of heart.

    My advice is: wear comfortable shoes, have a lot of patience and enjoy the experience. I always reserve one day just to look at the quilts and take pictures. Other days are shopping/looking at quilts. I move back and forth depending on where the crowds are (I try to avoid them).

    Read the website because there is a lot of good info there. Rolling carts are normally not allowed on the floor and as thimblebug says, watch out for the people in scooters. They'll run into you! Don't be shy about saying "Hey!" or "Ouch" really loud so they know what they've done.

    Most quilters are really nice people but unfortunately there are always a few.
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  4. #4
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    My advice is to plan to split up and meet back at lunch or a certain place. It's so huge, you will want to spend time on looking at what you are interested in and not waiting for a friend to check out something closer. We spent 4 days there and I was never bored. Be sure to tell your bank that you are going and that there will be charges from all over the country. A friends Visa was put on hold because of charges from the East Coast and the West Coast within about 30 minutes. She had to stop and get it straightened out before she could charge more.

  5. #5
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    It is huge . I really shop at the show on the afternoon . The crowds are thinner and you can see the venders wares

  6. #6
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    This will be my fourth year to attend. I have signed up for four days of classes [I'm really excited about the teachers and techniques they're presenting.] and allowed myself three days for shopping and quilt viewing. I learned a couple of years ago to park my car at the end of a Metro line and take the train in. It's convenient and easier than trying to park downtown. There are many venues for food, some inside the convention center itself.

    If you understand the old "kid in a candy store" saying, you will have an idea of the Houston festival. There is so much to look at and so much to see that some people are a bit overwhelmed. Do plan on wearing comfortable shoes, taking plenty of breaks, and make arrangements for carrying your purchases around. Taking a camera is a good idea, but be aware that there are some quilters who do not wish to have their work photographed.

    Look closely at the website or class catalog to see what might interest you the most. Make a plan, but be flexible. If this is your first time, prepare to be amazed by all that you will see and do.
    Sometimes I try to act "normal," but it gets boring so I just go back to being myself.

  7. #7
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    If you want to take pictures beware you cannot take pictures of all the quilts. Some have signs the size of post it notes saying not to take picture. I didn't see the sign and a person came running over for me not to take the picture. Just a warning. But enjoyed the show. It was my first time to go.

  8. #8
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    I went 2 or 3 different years; haven't been since 03; had eye issues and it was NOT fun; eyes wouldn't focus at the time. 5 hour drive for me and as was said before driving in Houston is NOT fun - at all. No consideration from others who don't seem to realize not everyone is from there and know how to get to where they are going, so very rude. I have heard the best deals are on Sunday though, if you are there for that day. It is overwhelming with all to see. Have fun.
    Also when I was there they wouldn't allow those pull along carts to put your things in; guess people were banging into others with them so they banned them; so you either have to take your things out to the car periodically OR check them - for a fee.

  9. #9
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    I have gone every year for 25 years and it is huge. I would suggest if you can comfortably wear a back pack or carry a light weight tote bag it is a good idea. In years past, walkers were allowed but only with a doctor's permit. Buy the program and mark the booths you would like to revisit. There are people from all over the world there and sadly many leave the manners at home. Comfortable shoes are a must. Wear what is comfortable. There is so much to see, hear, learn and buy. Enjoy your visit.

  10. #10
    Super Member mtkoldra's Avatar
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    thank you all very much for your comments! I will take all of it for consideration when planning my trip. I will be staying with friends and hopefully they will help with the transportation or advise how to get to the show. thanks again

  11. #11
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    I have been every year except one (trip to Alaska) for the last 30 years. The first year I went the GRB (short for George R. Brown Convention Center) was much smaller. The vendors and hanging quilts only used about 2/3 of the first floor (classes were on floors above as they are today). The other third was a different convention - a gun show! My husband dropped me off and when I was finished, I called him from one of the pay phones located at the rear of the hall.

    Things have definitely changed! But it is still so much fun to go and see the quilts and all the vendors. I have had fabulous teachers and learned so much. My friend and I like to get there early before class starts and sit around the tables on the upper floors and visit with people from all over the world.

    Across the street is Discovery Green, a beautiful park. If the weather cooperates, it is a great place to go with your lunch and take a rest from all the noise and bustle of the show.

    Remember, they will not make personal announcements if you get separated from your group so always plan a meeting place and time. It is not so bad now since most everyone has cell phones. The only time they will make announcements for people is in case of a medical emergency. And yes, you do have to watch out for the people on the electric scooters - most are very nice but there are always some that are quite rude. I try to be considerate of them as I know it must be frustrating not to be able to get in and out of many of the booths and to try to move down very crowded aisles

    Hope you have lots of fun!

  12. #12
    Junior Member immemother's Avatar
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    My Mum and I are coming over from Australia and could not be more excited! We got the classes / lectures we wanted except Mum missed out on the Debby Brown classes. We're expecting to be happily exhausted every day.
    I use to find excuses to buy shoes, now I find excuses to buy fabric.

  13. #13
    Junior Member Kelly_Y's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtkoldra View Post
    we have new friends in Huston, TX, who are inviting us and another couple to stay in their house and us girls going to the quilt show. Sounds like fun but after looking at the show's web site I am afraid to be overwhelmed with it and miss some good things. Any suggestions, from you who went in previous years, how to plan going to the show. I do not think that I want to take any classes, maybe taking some lecture at most.
    thank you
    The GRB is quite the walk from end to end, not counting walks from parking garages and lots. Comfortable clothes and shoes are a must.

    Check your program and the posted signage on which quilts you are allowed to photograph.

    Bring plenty of cash for the vendors' room. Vendors there have billing addresses all over the country or even world. Your bank's computer will decide your card's been stolen if you try to pay with card at too many of them.

  14. #14
    Community Manager PatriceJ's Avatar
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    it's a great show!

    all sorts of good things about it, but one word of caution:
    watch vendor prices carefully.
    some know people assume everything there is "a deal."
    in a lot of cases the prices at the show booth is the same as you'd pay anywhere else.

    i do not mean to imply they are trying to get away with something sneaky.
    i mean only that you should choose carefully what you have to haul around the show and get back home.
    even if you go by car with lots of space left after bodies and baggage, just dragging that little bit too much around the show itself can put a lot of wear and tear on your shoulders and back.

    you can get awesome deals on machines, long-arm frames and things like that.
    there are often really nice package deals, too.
    don't be afraid to haggle. (see if they'll throw in free shipping, for example.)

    as for shoes ... i take a nice pair of plush, extra-comfy slippers, too.
    i switched to those when even the walking shoes weren't enough.
    i got lots of funny looks but my tooties were quite happy.
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  15. #15
    Senior Member MicheleC's Avatar
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    I will also be going to this show for the first time this year. I am fortunate enough to have family in the Houston area and will be visiting at the same time. I appreciate that this question was asked and will heed the sage advice! Thank you, mtkoldra!

  16. #16
    Senior Member MicheleC's Avatar
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    Does anyone know if strollers are allowed at the show?

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by MicheleC View Post
    Does anyone know if strollers are allowed at the show?
    I don't know if it is allowed but I would think twice before I took a child. It is very crowded and noisy. I know I felt overwhelmed and had to take a few time outs myself. I would think a small child would be traumatized but you know your child.

  18. #18
    Senior Member MicheleC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by toverly View Post
    I don't know if it is allowed but I would think twice before I took a child. It is very crowded and noisy. I know I felt overwhelmed and had to take a few time outs myself. I would think a small child would be traumatized but you know your child.
    Thank you, toverly. I appreciate your advice.

  19. #19
    Senior Member Sheri.a's Avatar
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    A few thoughts I hope will help:
    - Plan to "change things up" while you are there. Last year I decided I would see all of the quilts the last day I was there. Oh my! It was like smelling too many perfumes at one time -- it was sensory overload!!! The quilts are fabulous! This year I plan to mix it up with vendors and quilts.
    - I carry a tote in a tote. When my first tote gets heavy, I check it in for $2 and pick it up at the end of the day. I then start using the second tote I bring. The check-in feature is a God send to me because I am not used to carrying anything more than my purse and the purchases can be heavy! I have used this service for years and love it. When I am with quilting buddies, we combine items to check in. Check your bags in to the check-in closest to where you will be leaving for your parked car (there are 3 or 4 locations).
    - When I am with my quilting buddies, we often split up and use texting to check in with each other. I might say "where are you?" and they will reply "501" meaning they are in the vendor booth 501. We have not had any problems with this. We keep our phones where we can hear them (bra, phone carrier around neck which can multifunction as a badge holder...)
    - Although you cannot eat or drink in the vendor or quilt areas, you can bring a beverage with a top and snacks in your tote.
    - If you see something you really like, it's easier to go ahead and purchase it (unless it's expensive). I have found price shopping difficult and finding that item later can really eat up your time. You have spent a lot of energy and money to get to the show--is it really worth it to save a few dollars?
    - If you have a smart phone, get the new app from Quilts inc. It shows the theme and time for Meet the Teachers (a great free place to learn, sit down and rest), the Open Studio (another free place to rest and learn) and the vendors. You can review it before you go and click on your favorites to help you remember what you want to do and when.
    - The lectures they offer can probably be found on the app, but I'm not sure. I know it can be found at http://quilts.com/quilt-festival-hou...of-events.html listed as a lecture. The Luncheon lectures are around $40, but the others were $8 last year and I have really enjoyed most that I have gone to. They go into more depth about a subject than the schoolhouse, but make no mistake, each one will have something to sell you :-)
    - Plan to walk more than you ever do! You will be tired but it's a good tired.

    Have a wonderful time!
    ( `v )
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    ..) .*) Sheri in Texas
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