Tuesday, November 18, 2014

TQS Taping

 Hi all -

I was lucky enough to be able to attend the taping of The Quilt Show yesterday.  Fun! Fun! Fun! To add to the fun, my friend Sharon from Greeley was also able to attend, so I got to spend a wonderful day with her.

This year, The Quilt Show tapings are being held at the Comcast facility in Centennial, CO. This makes it a bit of a drive for me (about 2 hours), but it was well worth it! This year they also allowed us to take pictures, so I snapped a few to share with you. Of course, I didn't think about taking general shots of the room, but you'll get a sense of the setup from the pictures that I have. First, here's a picture of part of the audience:

There are two banks of chairs like this one. One of the volunteers told me that they issue 60 tickets for each taping, but often not everyone will show up. I think we had close to the 60 at our taping, although a few of them didn't come back after lunch for some reason. One of the things that is nicer about this facility than the one in Boulder that has been used for the last couple of years is the stadium seating. Everyone in the audience can now see what's going on without heads in the way. You can see behind the audience members some beautiful quilts that make a nice back-drop during the taping of the audience and are nice for us to look at during breaks.  Here are some pictures of a couple of the quilts:

The lighting really makes these quilts glow! I think the first quilt was made by Ricky and the second quilt by Alex, but I'm not sure about that. I didn't think to look at the labels while I was there.

So, what's it like to be an audience member? We come in and take a seat and watch while the crew and the talent (yep, that's what Alex and Ricky are called) get ready for the different shots. While they are taping, of course, we keep quiet except for reactions to what is happening in the taping. If something is funny, we can laugh. If something is exciting, we can clap. For certain segments, we are instructed to clap in and out of the segment. For those, we have to clap a lot longer than you would expect so that they can cut it to whatever they need in production. There are also segments that, instead of clapping, end with the "long creepy stare". For those, Alex, Ricky and the guest have to just sit there and stare for an uncomfortably long time so that they can edit it to the right length at the end. It's pretty funny to watch!  I certainly couldn't do it myself without laughing or having a coughing fit!!  After the taping of an episode, there is a taping session of the audience. For those, we are told to do something like "oooh" and "aaah" or clap or give a big belly laugh and they tape us so they can cut those in at the appropriate points. Isn't that fun???

For this taping, the first guest was Barbara Shapel (www.barbarashapel.com). She is a fiber artist who is known for her thread painting of wildlife, especially herons. Her work is incredible!! She uses the same thread in the top and bobbin so that her quilts are two-sided. And she generally uses a solid black fabric for her backing to make the front a day picture and the back a night picture. Incredible! To give you a sense of her work, here is the front of a quilt that was shown to the audience during one of the breaks:

This quilt consists of a solid blue piece of fabric with all of the picture being thread work. Incredible, huh?  Well, it becomes even more incredible when you see the back:


Again, it's a solid black piece of fabric with all of the detail coming from the thread. The pictures don't do it justice!! She also has a quilt of a mother wolf. On the front she has the mother thread painted. When you turn it to the back, nighttime image, you can see her 3 babies who were thread-painted with invisible thread on the front side and colored thread on the back. Incredible! Here they are getting ready to film a demo. The wolf quilt is hanging above the demo table.

And here is Justin filming the intro. As you can see, they have large TVs on each side of the audience so we can see what is being filmed, even when the cameras are in our way.

The second guest was Joanne Sharpe (artfulquiltandstitch.blogspot.com). She is an artist who paints the backgrounds of her quilts and includes text in them. She showed us how to make fusible appliques of text in our own handwriting and some of the tools she uses for painting her quilts. I didn't seem to get any pictures with her in them, but you can see some of her work in the background of this picture of the set:

And here is a little piece of hers that was passed around the audience during one of the breaks:

I really like how bright and happy her work is! And she's an amusing lady to listen to.

During the breaks, John's job is to keep the audience entertained. He tells us jokes and shares interesting trivia. Sometimes Alex, Ricky and Justin will join him.

He also entertains us with quilts. Here is this year's BOM:

He also showed us next year's BOM, Alex's quilt that was made for the Libby Lehman auction and Libby's quilt that was Alex's inspiration. And my final thing to share are Lea McComas' little quilts that she made as gifts for them when they filmed her show on Saturday:

 Aren't those incredible? Lea is so talented!!

That's all about the taping. I have to rush off now because the Kansas Jayhawks game is just starting....

Happy Quilting!



  1. Wow - love the owl quilt!! Great job recapping the taping too - it's like I was there!! The Ricky and Alex quilts at the top just glow -- beautiful. Thanks for sharing!!!

  2. I was at that tapping with you! Me and my Son!

    1. It was great, wasn't it? What fun!