Fabrics and Threads at the Iowa State Fair

The great Iowa State Fair is going on now and we were able to go for a few days, here we are in front of Ye Old Mill. Gene Anne and her boyfriend, Spencer, Todd and I and Noelle. This is our 12th year in a row of attending. The Ye Old Mill boat ride is the oldest ride on the fairgrounds, constructed in 1921, it is a 1,500-foot-long enclosed water canal, powered by a paddle wheel. Our family usually goes on it and then we take a photo in front of it every year.
Our state fair is frequently ranked as one of the top events in the country, the Iowa State Fair is the single largest event in the state of Iowa and one of the oldest and largest agricultural and industrial expositions in the country. Annually attracting more than a million people from all over the world, the Iowa State Fair located at East 30th and East University, just 10 minutes from downtown Des Moines is Iowa’s greatest celebration with a salute to the best in agriculture, industry, entertainment and achievement. There is an unbelievable amount of things to see and do and today I will tell you about the Fabrics and Threads open class department which can be viewed on the second floor of the William C. Knapp Varied Industries building.

Anyone can submit entries following the entry guidelines and completing the forms. The board will then mail you an entry tag, which you as an exhibitor complete and submit with your item. For many years I entered a different quilt each year and one year I received an honorable mention. Now you may not think this is a big deal, but it was because most of the quilts exhibited have no ribbons on them. I don’t know the numbers but there are many, many quilts entered each year. Here is a link for this years results.
I will do my best to convey to you the size of this area, as you can see from the photo, you can not see the to the end of this room.I was there in the morning when there were less people, as the day goes on the isles will be packed with people.
The quilts are displayed in sections like this and you can see about 12 to 18 inches of each quilt due to the number of them and limited room. These quilts have all been judged, they are all beautifully designed, pieced and quilted, yet none of them have a ribbon.

While you are here visiting, you can also sign up for a class that will teach you how to make a quilt block.
Along with quilts there are many other entries, such as clothing. On display were ornate costumes, wedding gowns, business suits and any other imaginable article of clothing.
The handiwork of others’ were also on display, tatting, knitting, crocheting, hardanger and many more examples.
The entries chosen as best of show are displayed front and center and here is the quilt awarded that title this year. It is a bright and whimsical one! Usually we see a very traditional type of quilt as best of show, I was surprised.
It is beautifully designed, pieced and quilted.
I hope you have enjoyed my little tour of some of the entries in the Fabrics and Threads department. In closing here is a photo from my sky glider ride overlooking the fair grounds.

10 thoughts on “Fabrics and Threads at the Iowa State Fair

  1. Donna

    I had read before that Iowa has one of the best state fairs! My husband is originally from Iowa and he has been twice! Yes lots of beautiful quilts without ribbons! Food is still my favorite part of fairs; corn dogs, funnel cakes and cotton candy!

    1. Carla Post author

      Donna, thank you for the comment! That is good your husband made it there, even if only twice. I agree on the food, so fun to try new items and old favorites!

    1. Carla Post author

      You and your family would have a lot of fun there, maybe go on a Saturday or Sunday!

  2. Noelle

    I always have fun looking at quilts, and getting ideas. Many of the quilts are so intricate I can only hope to make them one day!

  3. Sue Kuennen Massman

    BEAUTIFUL display of quilts and needle WORK! Did you or your daughters submit an entry…and did you find it? You are absolutely RIGHT…So MANY things to see and do at the Iowa State Fair! Thank you for sharing!

    1. Carla Post author

      Thank you Susie for the comment! No, we did not enter this year but probably again another year. See you Saturday in Elkader for the Arts Festival!

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