Thursday night we drove in rain on a recently resurfaced blacktop highway without striping on the side. Get the picture? It was very hard on the eyes and the nerves. So we stopped just short of our destination. We checked in for the night at a beautiful new Best Western in Richmond, Indiana. (Great sheets too!)
It was just a short drive Friday morning to the conference. The SOFA conference is the mother lode of blacksmith tailgating. We walked those isles many, many times. The 3 days I was there, I spent a total of $3.00, two for some raffle tickets and one for Honey Crisp apples at 50 cents each. (Rita, they were wonderful!). Not much for a quilter to buy there.
On Saturday I attended the spouse's program. Here is a photo of the necklace I made. Heather Lynn (the teacher) had prepared bags of beads complete with line, hooks, and needles. Since my wardrobe is primarily brown and black I found a bag with colors to match. The price was right too. It was free for registered spouses!
Meeting up with BT after the class, we shared our sausage, cheese and crackers with our friend Bob Alexander for lunch. Bob was selling wares and we took turns watching his stuff so he could wander a bit.
Saturday afternoon, I went on a solo road trip (well actually with Gabby Garmin, my GPS). I went to find the barn quilts. There are 60 barn quilts in Miami County. Had the weather been nicer I would have gone further. Rain cut my drive short.
This Pinwheel #4 is on the RT Industries building located in town.
A short drive away I found the Right Hand of Friendship block on the Miami county board of MRDD also located in Troy.
Here is what I thought was the best one of the day. It's called Mariner's Compass and is on the barn that belongs to the Malarkey family.
It is located right in town in a beautiful old neighborhood, that used to be part of the country side.
This Laced Star block was actually on the site of the Miami County Fairgrounds where the blacksmith conference was being held.
Another gorgeous winner of the day was this Crocus Wreath block. It is on the Miami County Commissioners Barn.
Finally, I came upon this Cactus Quilt. It is on the El Sombrero Restaurant. Mexican food! I went back to the conference, found BT and fellow blacksmith Jerry, and off we went for Margaritas and dinner. After all it IS Saturday night and that's my favorite dinner on Saturday.
Earlier in the day, I had come across this beautiful covered bridge. No one was around. There it was in the falling rain all by itself. I got out, snapped a few pictures, walked inside and thought what the heck, I'm driving through it. The sound of boards under the wheels of my car is unnerving. The beams on the inside were unique. I just sat there and took the moment in. Beautiful!
After dinner, we returned to the fairgrounds and toured the gallery. The blacksmiths put their forged art on display. I also found this quilt on display. Even the quilting was blacksmith related.
To see more Blacksmith related items from the conference visit