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Posts Tagged ‘Tentmakers of Cairo’

Traveling The Globe To Get To Road

Thursday, July 21st, 2016

116 Mary Allum and Catherine Dodd[/caption] Catherine Dodd came from the Isle of Harris in Scotland. Her hometown is famous for producing Harris Tweed. Catherine journeyed 30 hours to get to Road to California. Her trip began from her home where she drove a half hour to get to the port where she boarded a ferry for a 2 hour sail.  When she got to the mainland, she next drove 14 hours to Heathrow Airport in London for her 11-1/2 flight to Los Angeles. After arriving in Southern California, she drove 1-1/2 hours to Mission Viejo to stay with her sister. Catherine was in California for 2 weeks, which included she and her sister attending Road to California. Catherine’s sister, Mary, is the sewer in the family and has lived in the United States just one year. She heard about Road to California from Mel’s Sewing and Fabric Center. Their first stop at Road was to take the bus tour that included going to Hoffman California Fabrics. Mary was looking forward to going to Hoffman and Catherine was interested in seeing all the fabric on their bus tour. [caption id="attachment_4181" align="aligncenter" width="625"]118 Jenny Bacon and Margaret McDonald[/caption] Quilters Margaret McDonald and Jenny Bacon came to Road from Australia. Both friends spent 10 days in the Southern California area. Jenny is not a stranger at Road. She has attended the show for the past five years and helps with the quilt contest judging. After 3 days of judging, Jenny was looking forward to getting out and seeing the show. It was Margaret’s first time at Road. She was looking forward to all the new experiences that Road had to offer, including going on a bus tour. Road 2017 is already set to welcome more international visitors. Teacher Jenny Bowker will be coming from Australia to teach her classes along with the Tentmakers of Cairo who will be showing their quilts as well as teaching classes with Jenny. No matter where you live, getting to Road is easy. We have suggestions for your travel arrangements on our web site. How far will you be traveling to Road to California 2017?]]>

Road 2015's Top 20

Thursday, January 22nd, 2015

Have you heard?

It’s Road to California’s 20th Anniversary

and we are celebrating with 20 things you won’t want to miss at this year’s show:

1)      Anniversary Celebration. Thursday, January 22nd at noon on the convention center main floor. Marching drumline, dignitaries, and special presentations._i4c2887[1]

2)      Quilts, Quilts, Quilts. Over 1,000 quilts will be on display

3)      Quilt Winners. Cash awards totaling $92,000 were given out this year.

4)      Vendor Mall. 220 Retailers with more than 700 merchant booths selling a wide variety of merchandise of interest to quilters, textile artists, home sewists, and crafters. Multiple locations: Exhibit Hall, Ballroom and Hall.   

5)      The Pavilion. First opening last year, the pavilion offers extra vendor space and is located adjacent to the south side of the convention center.

6)      Marketplace. Eight top manufacturers are available to talk with face to face, answer questions, and discuss their latest product line.

7)      Special Exhibits. There are 14 special exhibits including Fiber Art Celebrating 150 Years of California State Parks and Textile Art Inspired by the Beatles.

8)      Featured Artist. Meet award winning artist, Sheila Frampton Cooper.sheila_headshot_02

9)      Tentmakers of Cairo. Welcome Tarek Abdelhay and Hosam Hanafy from Egypt as they demonstrate the lost art of Egyptian applique. Egyptian Exhibit

10)  $5.00 Lectures. Each day, experts from various trades in the quilt world will be sharing their expertise. No advance registration is required. Sign up and pay that day.

11)  Road Booth. Purchase special show items including the 20th Anniversary commemorative Road to California fabric designed by Robert Kaufman Fabrics. Also, learn more about the 2016 Tote and Handbag Challenge.

12)  The Daily Drawing. Each day, a different prize will be offered. Thursday: Babylock Rachel Donated by Moore’s Sewing Center MSRP $699.00. Friday: Bernina Sewing Machine Donated by Mel’s Sewing Center. Saturday: Viking Sapphire 930 Donated by OC Sewing MSRP: $1899.98. Sunday: La Cresta Premiere Work Station Donated by Martelli. MSRP: $3,250. Daily drawing tickets are available at the North Information Desk. The drawing is conducted daily at 3 PM. Must enter daily; only one entry per person; and winner must be present to win.

13)   Quilt Appraisals. Certified appraisers from the American Quilter’s Society are on hand to appraise quilts and answer questions.

14)  Sack Sitters. Boy Scout Troop 628 is available in Room 2 to watch over purchases, quilt supplies and/or sewing machines for a minimal donation.  

15)  Local Quilt Guilds. Each day of the show, different guilds have tables set up in the north end of the arcade, displaying their raffle quilts._i4c3326

16)  Complimentary Show Book. This is the first year all attendees get a show book for free with their admission thanks to our Bronze Sponsors.  

17)  Contest Entries for Sale. Eligible quilts will be specially marked for sale.

18)   Food. The Ontario Convention Center offers delicious food choices including California Pizza Kitchen. Food stations are located throughout the convention center.

19)  Great Weather. The forecast for Ontario, Califorina during Road to California is:

Thursday: 73° and partly cloudy

Friday: 74° and sunny

Saturday: 77° and sunny

Sunday: 80° and sunny

20)  Family Feel. For 20 years, Carolyn Reese and her family have offered the best quilt show in the west!! _i4c4160pg

Enjoy the Show!!


Road 2015 Faculty: Meet Jenny Bowker, International Quilter

Monday, January 19th, 2015

Tentmakers of Cairo demonstrators, Tarek Abdelhay and Hosam Hanafy,  3017C Tentmaker Work. Jenny will also be teaching on her own  two day classes on Thursday and Friday,  4501C Shimmering Triangles and on Saturday and Sunday, 6701C Images in Appliqué

Jenny Bowker bio

An Australia native, Jenny Bowker’s quilt journey began thanks to her husband’s assignment as a diplomat for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to the Middle East. When her husband first moved to Gaza, Jenny had some time on her hands. She and her children couldn’t join him for about six months as it took that long for them to get into high school there. Her part time job had just run out of funding. And while she had recently finished her full time degree in Visual Arts, she was all “painted out.” How did she fill her free time? Jenny bought some fabric and equipment and decided to make a quilt “just for fun.” Today, much of Jenny’s quilt inspiration comes from living fifteen years in Arab and Islamic countries. 

Jenny likes to read and travel and has become an internationally known quilt teacher. She has taught in the USA, Brazil, South Africa, UK, France, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Spain, Portugal, Thailand, India, Singapore, Malaysia, Japan, China, Taiwan, Korea, Dubai, Turkey, Kuwait, Egypt, Libya, Syria, New Zealand and of course, her home country of Australia. She had an exhibition in Malta and taught at the University there this past December. Her biggest trip was when she went to America, worked in California for two weeks, arrived home in Canberra, Australia for three hours and then had to board a plane again for London.

Mohamed Sa'ad in Cairo Quilt by Jenny Bowker. Photo by Daniel Heather.

Mohamed Sa’ad in Cairo
Quilt by Jenny Bowker. Photo by Daniel Heather.

Her favorite class that she has taught was one she gave in Ramallah. It was four intensive weeks teaching three classes each day, six days a week, and all the women she taught ended as patchwork teachers.

Ramallah was also the place for one of her funniest teaching moments. She had a standing arrangement for a cab to collect her for class every morning. One morning it was sleeting – the wind was blowing a mix of snow and ice sideways. If she had waited outside the wall, she was in the snow. If she waited inside the walled area, the taxi would not have been able to see her. So she decided to wait outside. When she finally made it to the class, the organizer explained her situation and scolded her in front of everyone: “You must ask the girls to bring you a chair, and wait inside. Then, with the driver comes, he will make horny noises to you.” Jenny choked on her mouthful of coffee – and worse – she couldn’t even explain why she found this so funny as the organizer was a very proper, elderly Palestinian lady.

What does Jenny like best about teaching? “The lift of joy in the room as students start to get excited about what they are seeing coming together in front of them.” She hopes her students at Road come out of her classes stimulated, excited and invigorated; looking at the whole world differently as they realize that their quilting horizons have just opened right up.

Jenny’s favorite quilting tip is to remember that all the processes of quilting are easy if you consider them as one tiny step at a time. She added, “I give a LOT of tips in my classes.”

To learn more about Jenny, go to her website, jennybowker.com

Celebrating 20 Years of Road To California

Monday, January 12th, 2015

Hip Hip Hooray – 2015 marks Road to California’s 20th Anniversary.Logo 2015

Why did Carolyn Reese decide to purchase Road to California in November, 1990? Because she felt “Southern California deserved a good quilt show.”

Prior to 1990, Road to California was a small conference held in October in Anaheim, California. Carolyn produced her first show in October 1991. The first change Carolyn made was to move the location to Ontario, California and the Clarion Hotel. She kept the format the same as a conference only show. There were just nine faculty members and nine classes available each day. Around one thousand guests came to that first show.

In 1993, the show’s dates were changed to January. There were no other quilting events going on that time of year and Carolyn thought that California, with its superb winter weather, would be a great draw.

In 1996, Road to California became known as a “quilters’ conference and showcase.” For the first time, quilt entries were accepted only from quilters in California and Nevada. Three years later, in 1999, the show began accepting quilts for the contest from all over the world.Ontario Convention Center

With the continued growth of the show, a new location was needed. So, in 1998, Road to California was moved to its current home at the Ontario Convention Center. Road was the first public show held at the new convention center and now is the center’s largest client, taking up not only the entire convention center footage, but additional tent space as well. Last year, over 35,000 people attended the show, taking over 150 classes from an internationally known faculty.vendor floor 2

A unique feature of Road to California is that it is a family run event. Carolyn has involved her family in the show right from the start.  Her grandchildren were models for the wearable fashion show at the in first shows. They also took tickets, handed out programs, gave out prizes to the winners and visited with the guests. Seven of Carolyn’s nine grandchildren continue to stay involved by managing the office, doing computer work, overseeing the Road Booth, and assisting with financial tasks. Today, grandson Matt Reese, who was three years old when Carolyn started the show, is Road’s manager (and a law student graduating next May)._i4c4160pg

Carolyn’s three sons have always played a huge part.  Oldest son Mike works with the financial aspects of the show. David, Carolyn’s middle son, created the computer programs and registration protocols that are unique to Road. David also photographs the contest quilts and makes the annual Road CD. Youngest son Darrell oversees the set-up and take-down of the show. And don’t forget Carolyn’s three daughter-in-laws. They help their spouses in taking pictures, running the Road Booth, and handling the equipment.       

What does Carolyn do during the show? Her role is to mix and mingle with the guests. You will find her buzzing around on her cart, watching the guests “walk around with a smile on their face, enjoying themselves, and forgetting their problems for a day.”

Carolyn is really looking forward to some of the special exhibits that will be on view for the 20th anniversary show. Quilts depicting Beatles songs, 150 years of National Parks, and demonstrations of a lost quilting art from the Tentmakers of CairoEgyptian Exhibit

Another thing Carolyn is excited to have at the show is the specially designed Road to California 20th Anniversary fabric commissioned from Alexander Henry Fabrics.Fabric-Road-to-California---natura

What does Carolyn see for the next 20 years for Road to California? More new ideas and continued growth. She would really like to see this year’s latest addition, Marketplace, expand to offer more expert advice for attendees.

Road to California 2015 – 20th Anniversary Show promises to be the best Road yet. Congratulations Carolyn Reese and the entire Road family for 20 years of the best quilt show in the West.

What is your favorite part about Road to California?


Unique International Flair at Road 2015

Friday, October 10th, 2014

What is the next international group to visit Road? The Tentmakers of Cairo with their exhibit Stitch Like an Egyptian.

Egyptian Exhibit

Curated by international textile artist Jenny Bowker, this exhibit sheds light on the art of Egyptian tent making. This ancient, intricate craft has been facing struggles, as machines try to replace hand-made items and unscrupulous businesses copy and sell their unique designs. By hosting Stitch Like an Egyptian’s California premiere, Road hopes to bring attention to the beautiful yet shrinking art of the few remaining Tentmakers who continue to ply their trade.

Egyptian Exhibit2

Originally, this type of artwork used to line tents or screens covered in appliqué that could decorate a whole street. The brilliantly colored appliqué are still used today for ceremonial purposes at weddings, funerals, henna parties, or Ramadan celebrations.

Egyptian Exhibit3

The artists who will be at Road to California are from Khan Khayamiya—the Market of the Tentmakers in the heart of Old Islamic Cairo. Hosam Hanafy Ahmed Mahmoud and Tarek Abdelhay Hafez Abouelenin will be on hand at the exhibit to demonstrate their method of appliqué. The amazing patterns in their pieces are based on geometry, sacred texts, and ancient artwork and convey much of the intricacy and relevance of today’s world of quilts.  In addition to their demonstrations, some of their appliqué art will be on sale as well.

Please join us in welcoming The Tentmakers of Cairo and their special exhibit, Stitch Like an Egyptian this January.