Thank you so much for all your great comments on my posts so far. I'm hoping it feels a little like you were there with me, because I'd have totally loved it if we could have gotten a big ol' bus and I'd carried a flag around and you could have followed me on my tour of market.
So, we had day one of booths, we've been to a party or 3 (of which I got zero photos because it's hard work taking pictures, socialising and drinking beer. Ok? I apologise. I am a drunken lush).
Here we are at day two of the booths and we're going to take a step into the world of organics. I'm not kidding you when I say that these are the future. Market leaders are Cloud 9. They were pretty fledgling last Fall and back then, although I loved the designs, I still felt organics were niche and likely to be more appealing to a smaller group of people. Since then Michelle and her business partner, Gina, have brought out great value, lower price point collections that don't skimp on quality or design. I truly believe that when they made this decision it was a turning point for the organic market. The big guns sat up and thought they'd better get a piece of the pie.
I have a set of Miscellany fabrics that are waiting to be turned into a floor pillow (I just need to quilt it) and they're beautiful to work with. You wouldn't realise they were 'different' in any way. The quality is exceptional, the handle is just as beautiful as any of the mainstream manufacturers, if not better, and they wash and dry with no problems. I tested out a couple of pieces and made comparisons - they held up just the same as fabrics with chemical dyes. And Miscellany has a LOT of black in it. (The comparison photos and everything will come when I've finished my pillow).
Another independent organics gal is Jan of Daisy Janie. Jan's newest line, Tilly, is a departure from her usual graphic style and is softer, more feminine but equally as modern. I think it's her best yet and is likely to appeal to a huge range of people from young, modern loving quilters, to more traditionalist types. There aren't that many fabrics that both my mum and I would agree on liking, but Tilly is one of them. She is also incredibly knowledgeable about the organic certificate. I mentioned this previously in my recap of schoolhouse sessions, but if you want to learn more about why you should choose organics, head over to her website and read up on it. It's very interesting. What I especially love about these ladies is that they are doing it themselves. They're not big businesses, they're truly independent, as is husband and wife team Jayson and Cynthia from Birch (whose booth I didn't get a picture of - HOW?!) Birch have developed a range of basics for release January 2012 that include dots not unlike the ever popular kei honeycomb dots. I can see those being a huge hit.
And then there's the big guns. Robert Kaufman have a heap of organic lines coming out. There's also a fantastic range of organic kona solids. Designers in the Kaufman group that will be manufactured as organic include Betz White, Laurie Wisbrun and Anne Kelle.
Japanese house of all things awesome, Kokka, have even got in on the game. You can read about their small but gorgeous collection on True Up (thanks Kim for picking up on those - I completely missed them!).
This time last year, hand on heart, I didn't think we'd be seeing much of a growth in the organics market, but I was wrong. The cloud 9 booth was also the busiest booth I saw, it was packed and there was almost always someone sat down with at least one of the ladies. Last year I know they did ok, but this year I'm pretty sure they did brilliantly.
Next year.....who knows, but I will bet any money on there being an even greater presence of organic fabrics and maybe even Moda will release the odd line or two? I wouldn't be surprised.
Tomorrow - even more booths! (Including free spirit...so you know what that means, don't you? Flea Market Fancy....ooooh!)
2 hours ago