Quilts and Fabric. Dispatch #1 from the 2013 Martha’s Vineyard Agricultural Fair.

“The Fair”.

New York City residents refer to their hometown as “The City”.

Islanders refer to the Martha’s Vineyard Agricultural Society’s Annual Livestock Show and Fair as “The Fair”. My personal style sheet requires that the “MVAS Livestock Show and Fair” be referred to as “The Fair”.


When the goldenrod, cardinal flower, hibiscus and mallow bloom, that means it’s late summer, and time for The Fair.

Dispatch Number One is from inside the Main Hall, where exhibits are displayed. Dispatch Number One is of fabrics, mostly quilts. There are some incredible quilts being made in the world today. Many of these works are truly museum-worthy.

Enough words.

Good morning!


Every stitch is a “pixel” in this piece of work. Every stitch here is an action of human hands, every stitch an act of planning, of preparation, of esthetic choice.

In the great space of the Main Hall, quilts hang from partitions, from rafters and from beams.


This much appliqué requires application.

Some quilters are patient patternists.

Some are exuberant colorists.

Here is the front.


And here is the back.


Many quilters use squares and geometry to “hang” their compositions upon.


For some reason, regarding all these color choices reminds me of a poem.

We will digress for a moment, in honor of William Carlos Williams.

so much depends

a red wheel

glazed with rain

beside the white

How different is each variation on a theme.


How one pattern of cloth can be used to tie variations together.

Some eschew the foundations of regular, formal structure, and quilt abstractly.


The Fair is one of the great summer events on the Vineyard.

On our way to the “Carny” Midway, we head out the East doors.

We take one more look back inside


Prized possessions, with prizes.

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