Monday 24 September 2012

Chicago smells like melted chocolate

  This past weekend I was in Chicago for an anniversary trip courtesy of my wonderful husband. Chicago was selected for a very specific reason- the Chicago Bears (Da Bears!) because I'm a huge fan- but we also got to spend Friday evening and all day Saturday enjoying The Windy City.

Solider Field
We did touristy things including visiting the silver bean, and we indulged in some celebrity chef food groupie activity (Graham Elliot's Grahamwich and Rick Bayless' Frontera Grill), but as with any trip to any city other than my own it was essential that we stop in a quilt store!

To be honest, I also insisted that we stop at a Jo-Ann's because I read about the store all the time on the various blogs I follow and I needed to see for myself. I had been warned that this was not the place to stock up on fabrics (especially for fabric snobs, as I have recently become) but I did want to check out batting and try to find a Gypsy Gripper (suction cup handle for my ruler).

We stopped at a Jo-Ann's in Detroit on our way through to Chicago, and here is what I picked up:

Batting! 40% off. I picked up two baby size and one queen size.
An Omnigrid Ruler Grip, soccer ribbon for a taggie blanket I will be making a friend who is expecting, and 3 yards of Kona White (it was 20% off!).
DS quilts Quilters Quarters
I thought I was really very reserved at Jo-Ann's, and I did find that though the store is huge, the actual desirable fabric is really at quilting speciality stores, like the one I visited in Chicago, Quiltology.

There is actually only one quilting store in the city of Chicago (as in, not in the suburbs) and the website looked awesome, so hubby and I hopped on the "L" and headed out to find this store Saturday morning. I was greeted with shelves of modern, delicious fabric. She also has these genius quilt kits that include binding, but I didn't buy any because I have so many non-kit projects already on my mental "to do" lists. 

 I was slightly less reserved at this store, and the woman who owns the store was kind and patient and helpful (despite reviews I had read to the contrary, the store is welcoming and the owner is very helpful).

Here is what I picked up:

This is the yardage I bought- 20% off if I bought 1/2 yard or more, so I had to buy 1/2 yard of each!

This bundle of Art Gallery fabrics was on clearance. I love AG fabrics, but to be honest I am never drawn to the yardage. It is not my style really, and yet Jeni from In Color Order has made all sorts of projects using this line and it looks amazing, so I chose this bundle to break out of my zone!

Kona Plum. It is to die for. I don't even really like purply pinks but I needed a FQ of this colour. I think it goes with my AQ bundle, actually.

I am holding back the bundle so you can see my favourite prints. Love those dots!
What I really need to do is find out what these prints are called, who designed them and who made them, but I am currently in work survival mode so that will have to wait. When I actually use the fabric I will be sure to post the full names.

It was a fabulous, relaxing trip and I absolutely fell in love with Chicago. I love it even more than New York. I look forward to returning there with my husband over the upcoming years. And yes, Chicago smells like melted chocolate. At least where we were (the theatre district) it sure did. All the time. I knew Chicago was the city for me!

Lynn (aka Buttons)

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