I was invited to teach my surface printing workshop at the first ever “Modern Quilt Convention” which took place in Austin. I was thrilled to go, and rather happy to be able to combine the trip with my boy August’s winter break. So he and I took off on a Tuesday and aimed to eat as many tacos as possible and we DID… pretty much every day for 6 days.One great place for food was Gueros on South Congress… the lemonade was real good there. And a real good spot for migas and fun people watching was Jo’s on South Congress. We spotted a couple of cowboys and a few cool hipsters – always entertaining!
We were really impressed with the Austin Botanical Garden. Very lovely and inspiring, and made for a marvelous adventure for a 6 year old.
I did not spend too much time shopping in Austin (it was all about the food for me!) except for a few second-hand shops. I found a lovely vintage dress from the 60′s and some cool boots. Now, I PROMISED myself prior to my trip that I would not buy another pair of cowboy boots because I truly do not need them. I’ve done this before only to turn around and sell the boots when I get back home. But I just can’t resist – and now I have another pair of boots! Yeeha! More importantly, we found a most awesome cowboy hat for August, simply meant for the boy. He wore that hat every second for the rest of the trip, and rightfully so I think!
So, I was real floored by the food at Barley Swine…rather amazing food. Really, if you visit Austin you must find your way here! Incredible! But my favorite, favorite spot wasContigo. Splendid food, and a really good vibe. We played Washers and Crazy Eights while waiting for a table and I really liked the simple decor, and the inside/outside space. Rabbit stew, spicy popcorn, good pickles, amazing biscuits and greens… the list goes on! We ate like little piggies! When we thought we really could not eat any more, we still did! I mean, we HAD to visit Gourdoughs Donuts, one of hundreds of food trucks in Austin. They are indeed fat and plump and delicious. (So is the cupcake truck on South Congress!)
Friday and Saturday I spent teaching workshops and there were some real great things that got made by some real great ladies. The quilting community is such a nice community to tap into: nice people, making things and sharing… and do they know how to shop! My little pop up shop was swamped with nice ladies eager to own anything “Lotta,” especially the scrap bags that sold out in 5 minutes! No, really, 5 minutes. I could not have had a better time!
I also got to listen to Denyse Schmidt’s keynote talk which was endearing, funny, smart, inspiring and compelling. At one point she made me cry (happy tears!) hearing about her creative journey and connections. A wicked talented lady, that Denyse. Here is one of her many beautiful quilts she has made…
On our last day in Austin we went on a hike to the Hamilton Pool Reserve, which was a real treat right before we took our long flight back to Brooklyn.
A most perfect, inspiring and lovely trip, I must say. Austin, I will be back.