The Original Creative Festival of Sewing, Quilting & Fiber Arts, June 13-15, Features Classes, Demos, Vendors & the Alzheimer’s Quilt Exhibit

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The return to handcrafts has introduced a new and expanding audience to this fiber arts festival, which includes dozens of classes for children through adults, as well as demos, fashion shows and more than 65 vendors. Celebrity quilters Marianne & Mary Fons and popular designer Joi Mahon are among the experts who will educate and inspire.

This festival does so much to educate the public on the value and skill it takes to produce items by hand, and hopefully as locally as possible!

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A hand-made craft movement is well underway, fueled by an entrepreneurial movement and the increasing popularity of “DIY” (Do It Yourself) projects sold at outdoor markets, on websites like Etsy and small retailers. On June 13 – 15, teens to retiring boomers seeking outlets for self-expression, as well as sewing and craft professionals will find inspiration, education and much more at the Original Creative Festival. The Sharonville Convention Center will be humming with dozens of classes, more than 65 vendors, ongoing demos, fashion shows, stage presentations, quilts and cloth doll exhibits. The Festival takes place from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on June 13 & 14, and 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. on June 15. Cost is $8.00 per day or $16.00 for a three-day pass. Visitors bringing a non-perishable food item for donation receive a $2.00 discount. For more information, phone 800-473-9464 or visit

“Whether you’re a seasoned amateur, experienced professional, or you’ve only toyed with the idea of trying your hand at sewing, quilting, knitting, crocheting or a craft, you will find something to excite and inspire you at the festival,” comments Judy Patterson, the founder of the Festival and three other national events for fiber arts enthusiasts and the sewing industry. “It’s our goal to create the best and most welcoming atmosphere for sewing, quilting, and fiber arts education, entertainment and inspiration.”

Dozens of classes begin at 9:00 a.m. each day of the event. This year’s celebrity teachers include expert quilters Marianne and Mary Fons. Marianne is the co-founder of the Fons & Porter's Love of Quilting magazine and the popular PBS television program. She will be joined by her daughter, Mary Fons, the new co-host on the “Love of Quilting” TV show and founder of , a website aimed especially at younger and beginning quilters. On Friday, June 14, Marianne will present "Why We Quilt," Mary will entertain with her lecture "A Thirty-something Quilter Tells All," and the mother-daughter duo will share "Beyond the Binding: Everyday Quilters, Extraordinary Quilts."

Joi Mahon is an award-winning fashion designer, author, owner of a clothing patent, a licensor, and an educator, who bridges the gap between the fashion industry and home sewing. Her class topics at the Festival will include, but not limited to fashion draping, sewing as a business, fit and measuring the body, trends and design, designer bodice assembly, specific fashion projects and more. Mahon of Dress Forms Design Studio skyrocketed into fame when she created an infamous polka-dotted wedding gown for a client. The flirty pink and black dress with multi-colored tulle and a polka-dot skirt was featured on the cover of Wedding Essentials magazine and in numerous other publications. On June 15, Mahon will teach a Kids Fashion Boot Camp for ages 8 – 18, including sketching, sewing and design.

About sixty classes cover techniques, creating patterns, use of certain tools, how-to’s for specific fashion items and accessories, from lingerie to pet-wear. A list of classes, descriptions, supply lists and fees can be found on the website.

A featured event is the Heartstrings Apron Contest founded by Pam Folberth, the second generation owner of Sew-Ezy Studio in Cincinnati. Inspired by her childhood memories of sewing with her mother, the contest features one-of-a-kind matching aprons designed by “moms and daughters” who will model their creations at 1:30 on June 15. The winner receives a Janome sewing machine.

The traveling quilt show “Alzheimer's Illustrated: From Heartbreak to Hope” makes its last stop in Cincinnati and the 236 quilts on display will be auctioned on June 15. Long, narrow "Name Quilts" are made from 55 purple patches, each marked with the name of a person who has/had Alzheimer's disease or a related dementia. The "wrong" side of the fabric patches is showing, while the bright side of the cloth is symbolically turned to the inside of the quilt. The Name Quilts create a wall of more than 10,000 names, representing and honoring the 5.4 million people in the United States who have Alzheimer’s.

The exhibitors’ hall at the Original Creative Festival boasts more than 65 vendors offering top name brand sewing machines and equipment, sewing, quilting, knitting and crochet supplies, fabric, beads, notions, fashion items and more. Download the Original Creative Festival flyer at

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Robyn C. Allgeyer
Carey Communications
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