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Welcome to the Road to California Blog

Take A Quilt Bus Tour With Us

August 17th, 2019

One of Road to California’s most popular Special Events are the two quilt bus tours held in conjunction with the show. Road sponsors the quilt bus tours along with The Traveling Quilters.

quilt bus tour

Lynn Crawford and Pam Overton, owners of The Traveling Quilters, have been leading quilt bus tours since 1990. Both Lynn and Pam are experienced quilters. They combine their love of quilting and travel in providing unique experiences for Road to California.

It’s not uncommon to have returning guests on our quilt bus tours. 2019 was the third time for Janice and Roylene. Janice is from British Columbia and Roylene lives in Eastern Washington. They both spend their winters in the Palm Springs area and are “winter neighbors.” Roylene commented, “It’s great to let them do the driving and we get to see the sites.”

quilt bus tour

Even the bus driver, Roger, is a big fan of our quilt bus tours. He has been the lead driver on 15 of our special tours!! “It’s always so exciting to be around quilters. They are so happy and I like to see what they are doing,” says Roger.

quilt bus tour

Previously, the quilt bus tours were offered the day before the show opened and the day after the show closed. We’ve changed things up for Road to California 2020- 25th Anniversary Show. Our special quilt bus tours are scheduled for Tuesday, January 21st and Wednesday, January 22nd. Both bus trips will be headed to the San Diego area.

The first stop for the quilt bus tour will be at Quilt in a Day in San Marcos, CA. This is home base for the one and only – Eleanor Burns.

Guests will have time to shop before and after watching Eleanor tape one of her quilt shows. Eleanor will also be joining the quilt bus tour for lunch catered by Panera Bread.

After lunch, guests will be treated to a behind-the-scenes tour at Quilters Paradise where most of Quilt in a Day’s pre-fused, laser cut kits are made.

As the quilt bus tour makes it way back to the Ontario Convention Center, it will stop in Murrieta at another one of Road’s vendors – and a Road Sponsor – Primitive Gatherings. This wonderful shop has something for everyone:  wool kits and wool, primitive fabrics, reproductions, and a wide selection of bright, contemporary-to-modern fabrics.

***Note: This very special quilt bus tour departs earlier than previous years’ bus tours. The registration fee includes admission to the Eleanor Burns show, lunch and all gratuities.

For more information regarding our special quilt bus tours for Road 2020, please visit our website.

Multiple Winning Quilts For One Talented Quilter

August 17th, 2019

Not only did Catherine DuCharme win Best Applique for Happy Trails, she also received honors for two additional quilts at Road to California 2019:

2nd Place, Other Wall, for Pieces of the Past

Multiple Winning Quilts

And, First Place, Other Large, for Heirloom Romance.

 Multiple Winning Quilts

Pieces of the Past is from a pattern by Meg Hawkey of Crabapple Hill Studio. Catherine shared that she has enjoyed embroidery since she was nine years old and that Pieces of the Past combines her love of dishes and embroidery. While making this quilt, she learned a new technique for making the borders. She used the foundation paper piecing technique to make the crazy quilt blocks and then selected various embroidery stitches and designs to embellish them. Catherine thanked Diane Beauchamp for doing “a beautiful job quilting it.” Catherine displays the quilt in her dining room and every time she walks past it, she “smiles inside.”

Multiple Winning Quilts

Pieces of the Past received $750 from Sponsor: Elna Inc.

Heirloom Romance was another pattern from Crabapple Hill Studio. Catherine said she was “excited to embroider the vintage purses and embellish them with beads.  I think I made the 9 vintage purses in just a month of stitching and then I put them away. One day I found them, and I thought I just had to finish the quilt. So I started making the crazy quilt setting blocks; I really enjoyed playing with the designs in the blocks and using beads for embellishments.” Diane Beauchamp quilted this quilt also.

Multiple Winning Quilts

Sponsor, Pineapple Fabrics, awarded Catherine $1,000 for her winning entry.

What did Catherine think about having multiple winning quilts, receiving three prizes in one Road to California Show? “Oh, I was absolutely in shock to discover that I had three winning entries! Everyone had told me how difficult it was to be accepted so originally, I thought I’d submit three quilts hoping that one would be accepted for the 2019 show. I had plans to go to the quilt show with my Mom and my niece (who has just begun quilting) and I thought it would be fun to have one of my quilts on display. Imagine my surprise when all three of my quilts were accepted! Then on the day that the winners were announced, I kept checking my email all day. After 5:00 pm, I texted my girlfriends and I told them that I didn’t win. Boo hoo! Then three and a half hours later, the emails starting coming in…..I couldn’t believe it! All three of my quilts were winners!! And the prize money totaled $3250! I had to text all of my girlfriends again with the good news! I am so thankful for the sponsors who donate the prize money.”

Congratulations Catherine DuCharme for your multiple winning quilts at Road to California 2019.

Best Applique at Road 2019

August 17th, 2019

“Happy Trails” by Catherine DuCharme, received $1,500 from Sponsor, Fiberworks Inc.

best applique at  road 2019

What do you do if you’re a quilter who has attended Road to California many, many times and have always admired seeing the winning quilts on display? Well, if you’re Catherine DuCharme, you set out to make your own winning quilt!!! Not only did she achieve her goal, she tripled her expectations as she was recognized for three winning quilts at Road 2019!!!

Ever since her late 20’s, Catherine has admired quilts. She went on a trip to Canada and came upon a quilt shop where she commissioned two quilts that were hand quilted by a Canadian woman who was in her 90s.  As the years went by, Catherine said that she “yearned for a time in my life when I could try my hand at making a quilt.”

best applique Road 2019

That time didn’t come until she was 54 years old when she found that she “had a little extra time and I decided to make a quilt for my Mom’s 75th birthday. I bought a book and some fabric and dove in! I had no idea what I was doing and I was so frustrated at first. My Mom had made a log cabin quilt, so she had some experience. She was sure that we could make the quilt, so we worked on it together and voila! It came together! After that, I had a little more confidence so I made a log cabin all by myself.  That began my journey into quilting and I’ve been quilting almost every day since 2011.”

Catherine says that she “absolutely” loves quilting. Why does she love it so much? “The craft is so varied with the multitude of techniques and approaches to the art that I find myself continually engaged.  I’ve made embroidery designs, crazy quilt blocks, pieced quilts, and appliqué. I think my favorite is appliqué and I love the Baltimore style quilts.”

The first of her winning designs was for Best Applique at Road 2019, Happy Trails. What inspired this winning design? “When I first saw Happy Trails designed by Pearl P. Pereira of P3 Designs, I fell in love. It is so different than anything I’d seen before. Years ago, when I was a novice quilter, I had tried to make one of Pearl’s quilts and it was just too difficult for me; it was beyond my skill level. But, I was determined to make Happy Trails. So I took my time, I gathered my tools, and I worked patiently. I also attended a retreat in Carlsbad, CA to learn Pearl’s Off the Block technique for appliqué. That really helped me to practice the technique for preparing turned edges on very small pieces. After I completed the quilt top, Diane Beauchamp quilted it. She is truly an artist and I love the quilting designs she used. For both of us, Happy Trails has been a labor of love.”

It took Catherine 6 months to collect all the fabrics for Happy Trails. She said that it was “a lot of fun” to choose her fabrics.  She began stitching the quilt in February 2018 and it took another six months to finish it. She used a Silhouette cutting machine to cut all the freezer paper templates which “really helped a lot!”

What does Catherine plane to do with her prize money for Best Applique at Road 2019? It will “go towards my quilting passion! I have at least 15 quilt tops hanging in my closet that need to be quilted, so I will use the prize money to pay for some of them to be quilted.”

Encouraging Young Quilters

August 13th, 2019

Road to California Quilter’s Conference and Showcase has a lot to offer, especially when it comes to encouraging young quilters.

Encouraging Young Quilters

Angela is 12 years old and came to Road 2019 with her mom, Laurie, and her two grandmothers, Levonne and Stella. This family is all about encouraging young quilters as they each support and guide Angela with her quilt making. The first quilt Angela made, she entered it in Road’s young quilters contest at the show. Named “Rainbows over Clouds,” Angela made it from scratch, taking over 6 months to make.

Encouraging Young Quilters

Each month, she would go to her grandmother Levonne’s house to work on it. Laurie said that Angela enjoyed “every facet of the process” and was so dedicated. “It all came from her.”  Stella was “very impressed” with the “patience” her granddaughter showed for being so young. Levonne shared that it was ‘thrilling” for her to pass on the love of quilting to Angela as she becomes her family’s fourth generation quilter. Angela is looking forward to trying paper piecing and applique for her next project. She also wants to try longarm quilting.    

Encouraging Young Quilters

Makayla, age 17, has already been quilting for 10 years!! Road to California 2019 was her first time at the show and she was “amazed” at seeing firsthand how Road is encouraging young quilters. She attended the show with her grandmother, Ruthanna, from Fresno, California. Ruthanna started Mikayla sewing by helping her make doll clothes. She noticed that Mikayla had a lot of “talent” with sewing and knew she needed to “keep her focused” by introducing her to quilting. They enjoyed getting new inspiration at the show.

Encouraging Young Quilters

Trinity (17) and Tyanna (13) are sisters who have a famous quilting cousin, Latifah Saafar. They credit Latifah for inspiring them to start sewing.

Encouraging Young Quilters

The girls came to Road 2019 to see Latifah’s booth and quickly saw how “everyone is so nice and welcoming” at the show, encouraging young quilters.  

Encouraging Young Quilters

Ava (11) and Melanie (13) come from a quilting family. Their mom, Julie, made her first quilt along with her mom (the girl’s grandma), Claudia. Julie said she hand quilted that entire quilt. Melanie is currently working on a quilt, a kit she got from one of Road’s vendors, Pineapple Fabrics. Ava said that she has been coming to Road since her mom was pregnant with her!!! She was looking to start her first quilt and appreciated all the ideas and encouragement she found at the show.

Do you have a young quilter you can bring to Road to California 2020? The 25th Anniversary Show is the perfect venue for encouraging young quilters.               

Plan Ahead For Travel

August 10th, 2019

The excitement for Road to California 2020 – 25th Anniversary Show is building!! We’ve had record numbers of class registrations which is a great indication that quilters are as excited about the upcoming show as we are.

That is why we are suggesting that you plan ahead for travel NOW for transportation and housing — especially if you will be traveling from out of the area. . Whether you will be attending the show alone, with a friend or two, or in a group, the information below can assist you in making the most of your visit in January.

Group Travel Transportation

Plan ahead for Travel Road to California Quilt Show

Chartering a bus to attend Road to California is a great alternative to get to the show. By leaving the driving to someone else, not only do you save the headaches of driving in Southern California traffic, bus riders also save money to attend the show. Group travel discounts for show entrance are given when there are 30 or more travelers on a chartered bus that has been registered with Road to California. The price of a ticket for each member of the group is discounted $4.50 per person. If tickets are purchased by cash or check, Road extends an additional .50 cent per ticket discount.  These tickets are valid for all days of the show including Preview Night. Please note that tickets can only be purchased for the group travel bus riders. Additional tickets cannot be purchased for anyone from the group not arriving on the bus. Road provides one free admission wristband for the group travel coordinator and one for the bus driver upon arrival at the show. Street parking for chartered buses is limited around the Ontario Convention Center. A bus parking pass can be purchased for $40 per day ahead of the show. On site, same day bus parking passes are $80, and availability is not guaranteed.  Need help filling your group travel bus? Let us know on the registration form. Road is also happy to advertise your chartered bus trip on our website.

Discount for Jenny on the Road when you charter a bus

New for 2020, Missouri Star Quilt Company will soon have information on their website about chartering buses from their area. Groups who plan ahead for travel by registering their bus trip through Missouri Star’s site will receive $3.00 off their purchase of registration to attend Jenny on the Road Friday night, January 24th or Saturday morning, January 25th.

Housing

Whether you are staying one night or for the entire show, you can plan ahead for hotel accommodations. Road to California uses Passkey, an online reservation system that insures the best possible pre-negotiated rates for all Road attendees. Hotels on Road’s list are either in direct proximity of the Convention Center or have direct shuttles to the Convention Center. Road personnel have toured and inspected each hotel on our list to ensure that they meet our standards.  Hotel brands include AZURE HOTEL & SUITES, DOUBLETREE BY HILTON ONTARIO, HOLIDAY INN, RESIDENCE INN, SHERATON ONTARIO AIRPORT and THE ONTARIO GATEWAY HOTEL which is going through extensive renovations and will be the future host hotel for Road’s premier event.

Planning ahead for Travel to Road to California Quilt Show

Another benefit of using Passkey to plan ahead for travel is that group travel reservations are guaranteed. Road has secured specific requirements in our contracts that protect your group from a situation where they are forced to cancel your rooms.
For more information on how to use Passkey, please follow this link.

It’s never been more convenient to plan ahead for travel for chartered bus tours and hotel accommodations to Road to California.

Best Hand Quilting at Road 2019

August 6th, 2019

Jackie Perry won $2,500 from Sponsor, World of Quilts Travel, for Joy Of Spring.

Best Hand Quilting
Road to California 2019’s Best Hand Quilting Winner

Jackie Perry “loves” to hand quilt. She taught herself the technique in the mid-1980’s and has won numerous awards for her work.  She also loves to teach hand piecing and hand quilting.  In addition, over the past dozen years, she has taught fabric painting, paper piecing, machine quilting and many other techniques. Jackie enjoys designing original work and participating in quilt challenges.  She feels teaching is wonderful, but most of all, she enjoys the fellowship with other quilters.

Best Hand Quilting

Joy of Spring was inspired by Jackie’s fascination with adult coloring books. One coloring book artist, Thaneeya McArdle, gave Jackie permission to create her best hand quilting winner from her coloring book.

This best hand quilting winner took 19 months to complete.  Jackie used Hobbs Tuscany wool batting (which Jackie says is wonderful for hand quilting) and Sulky 12 wt. variegated thread for the entire quilt.  Jackie commented that some people wondered if Joy of Spring was painted. She admitted that it was entirely hand quilted with thread!!  The dense quilting with the variegated thread is what gave the appearance as though  it had been painted. 

Best Hand Quilting

Jackie shared other techniques that she used on Joy of Spring: “The background quilting needed a lot of movement, which I think I achieved.  I used a “quilt as you go” method in creating the quilt.  I wish I had done it as a whole cloth.  Though, in the end, the lace looks very nice to hide the seams.”

Best Hand Quilting

She was getting ready for bed when she decided to check her email and saw that she had been notified of her prize for best hand quilting. Jackie “looked at my husband and said ‘Oh, My goodness!  I just won best hand quilting at Road to California!’  My heart was beating and I was so excited.  I called and texted my daughters and grandchildren and some friends.  It was wonderful!”

What is Jackie’s next quilt project? “I’m currently working on another hand quilting piece and I’ve also started hand piecing a LaPassacaglia quilt.  It’s so intriguing to fussy cut fabric and sew the different shapes together.” In addition, she will be busy teaching her hand quilting skills to guilds and retreats around the country.

These Quilters Give Back At Road to California

August 2nd, 2019

Roadies Give Back is Road to California’s official philanthropy project. Held Saturday night of the show, quilters give back by joining together to make comfort quilts from quilt squares that were made and received before the evening.

This volunteer-led event, gives Road attendees a chance to meet other conference goers, participate in a worthwhile activity, and fill up an otherwise empty Saturday night. Everything that is needed for the quilters to work on the quilts – sewing machines, thread, batting, irons, and backing – are all donated for the activity by some of Road’s vendors.

Quilters give Back

Jeanne and Bruce are from Burbank, California. They’ve been married 25 years and are actively involved in volunteering for charitable causes like the Los Angeles Zoo and Blanketeers. Their giving spirit is what drew them in to Roadies Give Back. While Jeanne has been quilting for 20 years, Bruce does not quilt but he did enroll in a Handi Quilter class during the show. Jeanne has attended Road to California for 18 years and Bruce has accompanied her 10 of those years. Bruce said it “feels good to give back” with Roadies Give Back.  

Quilters give Back

Anne and Justine have been neighbors for over 40 years. Anne has been quilting for 25 years and Justine for 40 years. They quilt together at home “every couple of days.” Anne’s garage has turned in to a quilting “studiage.” They love going on “quilting adventures together.”  Road 2019 was their second time at the show. They saw finished Roadies Give Back quilts in the South Information Booth and decided they wanted to see what the quilters give back activity was all about and be a part of it.  Justine commented, “Tonight is fun!”

Quilters give Back

Another Burbank resident, Ailette, also does a lot of charity work. She was attracted to Roadies Give Back because she has lost friends and relatives to cancer. She and her friends made 35 quilt squares for the event. Ailette thinks Road to California is “wonderful. It is a great time to collaborate with others and see fun ideas.”

Quilters give Back

Illinois resident, Caroline, has been to Road to California 18 times. She has been quilting for 19 years. Caroline felt Roadie Give Back was a “good thing to do” while she was at the show.

We are again putting out the call for quilters to join in with Roadies Give Back at the 2020 show. If you are interested, please register on our registration page:   https://online.roadtocalifornia.com/   

Comfort Quilts For Cancer Patients

July 30th, 2019

In 2017 and 2019, Road to California hosted special evenings for guests to share their time and talents in giving back to the local community. Their philanthropy activity, Roadies Give Back, allowed quilters – whether or not they attended the show — to participate in creating comfort quilts for cancer patients receiving treatment at the Robert and Beverly Lewis Family Cancer Care Center at Pomona Valley Hospital in Pomona, California. To date, almost 200 quilts from these Roadies Give Back activities have been donated to the center.

comfort quilts for cancer patients

Robert and Beverly Lewis Family Cancer Care Center

Why was the Robert and Beverly Lewis Family Cancer Care Center chosen to receive the comfort quilts for cancer patients? Road’s Show Owner, Matt Reese, explained, “My mother, Shellee Reese, is the Administrative Director at the center where we donate the quilts, so it truly is all about giving back to the cancer patients in our area.” He continued, “Everyone has been touched by cancer in some way which gives this project even more personal meaning.”

Matt and Shellee Reese

Roadies Give Back is totally volunteer driven

Matt also shared that another reason Roadies Give Back is so special is because it “is fully organized and executed by some of Road’s volunteer staff members.” These volunteers take it upon themselves to get the word out to individuals and guilds about Road’s comfort quilts for cancer patients, distribute the block pattern, organize the collection of blocks and quilt tops, and oversee the Saturday night event where the quilts are put together and quilted. After the event, they arrange for quilters to finish any leftover quilts and of course, the best part, help distribute the comfort quilts to the cancer patients.   One of the Roadies Give Back Chairwomen for 2019, Renée Hicks, commented, “This is something we wanted to get involved with because bringing comfort is a tradition of quilters.”

Roadies Give Back Chairwomen: Margaret Grider, Karen Jones, Renée Hicks, and Nancy Lewis

Delivering 2019 Comfort Quilts for Cancer Patients

Earlier this year, Road to California delivered the comfort quilts for cancer patients at the Robert and Beverly Lewis Family Cancer Care Center. Six patients personally received their quilts that day.

comfort quilts for cancer patients

The rest of the quilts will be given out to patients throughout 2019.

comfort quilts for cancer patients

Seeing the smiles on the patients’ faces is the best reward for this project. Merlie Pantaleon, a Registered Nurse and Manager of the Oncology Unit at Pomona Valley Hospital, has watched patients both years receive their quilts. “This program is such a great thing for our patients. They really love it and are really excited.”

comfort quilts for cancer patients

Roadies Give Back for our 25th Anniversary Show

Due to the overwhelming success of this event, Roadies Give Back will be returning as one of the special events happening at Road to California 2020 – 25th Anniversary Show, January 23-26, 2020. The same team of volunteer staff members will be overseeing the project and are once again sending out a call for block makers, binders, and longarm quilters to assist in the effort. Matt hopes that quilt guilds and quilt councils will especially want to participate. “We can give a meaningful experience to the various charity groups and they don’t have to worry about the logistics of carrying it out.”

If you are attending Road 2020 and are interested in participating in the 2020 Roadies Give Back Special Event, register online at: https://online.roadtocalifornia.com/

Roadies Give Back 2020 will be using the same block pattern as last year. Anyone interested in making blocks for this year’s project can get started today.

comfort quilts for cancer patients

How many blocks for our comfort quilts for cancer patients will you make for 2020?

Elvis Quilts Were In The House

July 26th, 2019

Did you catch Elvis at Road 2019?

Elvis quilts

A Special Exhibit, Inspired by Elvis, featured scenes from the life of Elvis Presley. The Elvis quilts were made by numerous quilt artists from around the world who all memorialized Elvis in fiber.

Elvis quilts

Donna Marcinkowski DeSoto curated the Elvis quilts exhibit. Her previous challenges included Inspired by Endangered Species; Inspired by the National Capitol Region, Inspired by the National Parks and Inspired by the Beatleswhich had previously been shown at Road to California 2016.

Donna shared on her website how she got the idea for this Elvis quilts project: “Truth be told, Elvis was my first crush. I was eight years old and living in Fort Richardson, Alaska. Three of us were named Donna in my second grade class, it was the year of the Great Alaskan Earthquake, the Beatles had performed for the first time on The Ed Sullivan Show, and for my birthday that year, I had my first slumber party. We went to see the opening of Viva Las Vegas at the movie theater on Post, and that was the moment when six best friends and I decided we would all marry Elvis. We contemplated the moves of Ann-Margret but decided our bodies would never be able to move those ways. Nevertheless, we made big plans amid giggles and whispers. Fast forward several decades later… The project called “Inspired by the Beatles” was wrapping up, and fiber artists who had made Beatles quilts wanted to know what was next. My son Andy was visiting Graceland and called me, from the line to go into the mansion. ‘Mom! You should see all of the people here! Your next project… you’ve got to do Elvis!’  And so, the next challenge was born.”

There were 95 art Elvis quilts in the exhibit, all created using a wide variety of materials, techniques, expertise and interpretations. Each quilt measured 36″ x 36″ and portrayed an aspect of Elvis’s life, or a particular song or movie.

 Elvis quilts

Guests at Road had a fun time guessing the names of the Elvis movies and songs depicted in the Elvis quilts.

Elvis quilts

Road looks forward to presenting more unique and unusual Special Exhibits at our 25th Anniversary Show, January 23-26, 2020.

Mystery Quilting Class

July 23rd, 2019

Have you tried a mystery quilting class? Students register to attend a class where all they know is that they will be making a quilt in a certain size, but the design remains a mystery until the class is over.  

mystery quilting

Road to California’s version of a mystery quilting class is Mt. View Mystery.  This popular class was offered for several years then taken off our class schedule until its return in 2019. Mt. View Mystery is always taught by exceptional quilters who bring pre-cut kits to purchase, eliminating the need for students to find, buy and cut out their fabric before coming to class.    

Road’s Mt. View Mystery quilting class is also unique because it is offered at night, beginning at 6:00 PM and running until midnight. After all, what is more mysterious than the midnight hour?   

Charlotte Angotti taught Mt. View Mystery at Road 2019. Many of her students were familiar with Charlotte’s mystery quilting class and her quarterly Mystery Kit Club. Some of them brought mystery quilts they had made in Charlotte’s past classes to share.

Kim had attended 3 past mystery quilting classes of Charlotte’s, in Long Beach (twice) and Myrtle Beach.

mystery quilting
Sea Glass
mystery quilting
I Got The Ocean Blues
mystery quilting
Tutti Fruity

Jodi had gone to Charlotte’s class in Houston in 2015.

mystery quilting
Last Dance

Why do these students keep taking mystery quilting classes? Because they like the thrill of not knowing what it is they are creating; they love using pre-cut pieces, and they enjoy the slower pace where they don’t feel like they have to race through the project. Charlotte also gave encouragement for why to keep on trying mystery quilting classes. She said, “your current mystery quilt may not be one of your favorites but keep coming back because you are bound to discover one you love.”

The goal of a mystery quilting class is to get the students comfortable in completing the reoccurring block.  Steps for the block is taught in order. Written instructions are accompanied by a hands-on demonstration of each step. At the end of class, the finished design is revealed as well as finishing tips on how to put the blocks together.  

mystery quilting

Mt. View Mystery for Road 2020 is being taught Wednesday and Thursday evenings by Patricia Yamin, a familiar face to Road to California attendees. She has taught many classes in the past as well has been a vendor with her business, Come Quilt With Me.  Pat is the most entertaining and fast-talking instructor around. Students will be laughing and learning all night long. The mystery quilting patterns are different for each evening’s lap-sized top projects.

Solve the mystery and join in the fun. For more information about the Mt. View Mystery classes, visit our website.