Bay Quilts

Bay Quilts entrance
Bay Quilts entrance

I went with my mom on our monthly lunch date to Bay Quilts the other day. It is a new quilt shop in El Cerrito. I have been wanting to go there for awhile and this visit was the first chance I had gotten. I was really pleased that Mom didn’t mind driving all the way over there. We always have fun together. I love this shop! This is a really great shop.

They have a fabric shop, but also a workshop loft and art gallery. This shop is owned by Sally Davey, the woman who used to own New Pieces. There are similarities in the look, but also distinct differences.

Bay Quilts - large, open space
Bay Quilts – large, open space

The space is large and open. The ceiling is high and customers can see into the loft above. The displays are really great – fresh, new and not quilt-like at all. One display was a Wonder Woman dress made from a Simplicity pattern. I wanted to modify it into an apron. It was a great idea.

The thing that made me really laugh was the wagons. They will loan customers wagons to pull around the shop and fill up. I love this. I think it is dangerous to not have to carry 10 bolts around the shop, but I also think it is a great idea.

Bay Quilts - art dolls
Bay Quilts – art dolls

There were two gallery areas set up. One was a wall area with quilts hanging and the other was a rounder with art dolls displayed.Β  They were whimsical and detailed and gorgeous.

Bay Quilts - mermaid tail
Bay Quilts – mermaid tail

I really liked all of the dolls, but the mermaid was a special favorite. I might just be another girl in on the mermaid craze, but I really like that tail. Look at the curve in that tail!

If you have never made a doll, you will have no idea how hard it is to achieve. When I made Red and Coral for my niece I thought the straight legs and arms were difficult enough. I have a lot of respect for this artist.

Bay Quilts - art quilts
Bay Quilts – art quilts

The quilt gallery show was interesting as well. The quilts reflected some of the political news phenomena happening: Black Lives Matter, 45, terrorism and other things we all dislike seeing on the news right now.

The best part of the whole shop was the fabric. Hands down, no question. I loved the fabric. I saw fabric that I have not seen anywhere else. some of it I had heard about and some not. they had a good selection of super hero, Star Trek and Star Wars. I also saw the new Anna Maria Horner and a huge selection of Japanese fabric. The best of all was the huge, HUGE selection of Philip Jacobs prints. Yes, I bought some for another tunic or two.

Bay Quilts - signage
Bay Quilts – signage

I did like the way they described what was on each aisle as well. For example, there was a section of reproduction prints. The group looked really out of place IMO with all the other fabrics, but I know the owner is marketing to all segments – something for everyone. I thought ‘Vintage & Worldly’ was a great way to describe this aisle.

Bay Quilts - notions wall
Bay Quilts – notions wall

Clearly, the owner has thought about the business a lot. This is not just your stereotypical quilt store. There were a carefully selected group of notions, not just the same old Dritz items that quilt stores can get from distributors.

She has a lot of books, which I know is a hard path to travel with Amazon being so easy. The shop offers discounts on purchases, which is an incentive since you can have the book right then, even if you could get it in 2 days for cheaper from Amazon. Buy local!

Bay Quilts - silks
Bay Quilts – silks

There were a wide range of 108″ backs, different substrates and some absolutely luscious silks. If I had seen these a few months ago, I would have had more than my little black dress to choose from for NSGW events.

I bought a small pack of them just to have some of the colors. If I have ever make that silk quilt I planned, I will use them.

Bay Quilts - quilts for sale
Bay Quilts – quilts for sale

The shop also has quilts for sale! That is something I have never seen in the quantities at Bay Quilts. There was a lot of beautiful work at reasonable prices. If you need a gift, this is your savior.

Go visit!
Bay Quilts
5327 Jacuzzi St, Ste 3-C
Richmond, CA 94804
Tel: (510) 558-0218

Shop Review: Yoder’s Department Store

Yoder's Department Store
Yoder’s Department Store

Yoder’s Department Store is the place that is the main fabric store for the Shipshewana Quilt Festival. I never thought I would go to this place. It’s in Indiana. Do you know how far it is from my house? 5 hours on a plane, 3 hours on a bus, assuming your plane isn’t late and you don’t miss the bus, and about an hour in a car. We went to this store right after Zinck‘s and only had about an hour to look around. I was slightly jetlagged, so I had enough time, but I could have spent weeks in that store and not seen everything.

The other thing I noticed was that the store was scrupulously clean. Where Zinck’s was a little dark and slightly grubby – not dirty, just very basic – Yoder’s was spotless and bright.

Yoder's Soft Goods Section
Yoder’s Soft Goods Section
Yoder's large fabric area
Yoder’s large fabric area

For those of you who have not been to Yoder’s, it is a giant building with a few different and separate areas: fabric and clothing, housewares, hardware and a few others. We went into the fabric and clothing section, which also had shoes, table linens, baby clothes, and a few other things. The fabric section took up about half of that space. There was so much fabric that it was difficult to take it all in.

Yoder's Tula Pink & Friends
Yoder’s Tula Pink & Friends

Finally, I decided to do a circuit around the outside of the department to see what I saw. One of the first things I saw was some Tula Pink fabric.

This made me realize that I was in a different sort of store. The fabrics weren’t closeouts or remnants; they were the latest fabrics and a lot of them. I saw several lines of Thimbleblossoms fabrics, tons of Moda, all the American Made Brands solids, Kona solids, Bella solids.

I think I saw more of everything than I have ever seen anywhere. I think there was more fabric here than in Portland at the Fabric Depot. It would be close. If a person couldn’t take in all of the yardage and wanted to just pick some pre-cuts, the task would not be much easier. There were so many pre-cuts, I really couldn’t look at them all. Also, there were new ones. I saw Lulu Love by Cory Yoder (coincidence???) as well as Sunday Drive, which I had seen in Oregon and Washington.

Yoder's Notions
Yoder’s Notions

As with most quilt stores, there were quilts hanging everywhere with kits available for all of them. I found many of them to be quite appealing. Everywhere I went I saw notions, as well.

There was a whole large area with Creative Grids rulers. They had everyone I have ever seen including my favorite the 4.5″ x 8.5″ and the one on my list, the 20.5″ square. I bought a cut loose project sheet from this area to make a scarf hanger using a coat hanger, fabric and large WonderClips. Stay tuned for more on that project.

Indiana view
Indiana view

Outside Yoder’s was a farm and there was a great view of the barn. I love this view and would, theoretically, love to have my own version. I probably wouldn’t like the work, though and would need a superb farm manager like Patrick in The Beekeeper’s Apprentice.

My friend said there were at least 20 fabric stores within an hour drive from her house. I think I’ll have to come back. I am going to try and get a contract at her university so I’ll have a reason. πŸ˜‰

Shop Review: Zinck’s

Yes, the past 2 or so weeks have been an embarrassment of riches in terms of fabric shops. Shockingly, I have just returned from Indiana. Despite being from California, I have lived to tell the tale. Everyone was actually very nice and nobody judged me for being a Californian. Of course, my friend, Natalie, didn’t let me out of her sight.

Zinck's Home Dec
Zinck’s Home Dec

Zinck’s is housed in a former furniture store, so it is LARGE. They have all kinds of fabric including a large selection of quilting fabric. I saw fleece for $1.99/yard and thought of BAM‘s pet bed project. There were a large number of home dec fabrics for $5/$6 per yard with sale home dec fabrics at $1.99 a yard. Can you say Priced To Sell?

Zinck's quilting cottons
Zinck’s quilting cottons

They had a large number of quilting cottons. I wasn’t overly impressed with the quality, so I stuck to fabrics that had a selvedge I could find and recognize. There were lots of different designs, many of which I did not recognize. Lots of calicos and ‘interesting’ novelty prints.

Zinck's Fat Quarters
Zinck’s Fat Quarters

There were a large number of fat quarters at $1.50 each. I was determined to find some. When I went over to look, I found that a lot of them were the flat packs. Flat packs have a piece of cardboard inside and a sticker that says made in China. While there were some cut prints, I didn’t end up buying any. The fabric felt like Joann or Walmart fabric and I didn’t like the feel.

Zinck's Flat Folds
Zinck’s Flat Folds

One interesting aspect of the shop was their flat fold quilting fabric. There were pieces laying on tables consisting of 2-6 yards of fabric. They would cut pieces off, so if you wanted only a half yard, you could get that. If you bought the whole piece, however, they would give you a dollar off PER YARD! If you need backs, this is the place to go.

The store had knits, flannels, various polyesters, suiting fabrics and basically anything any sewist would want. If you are on a budget, you should definitely visit.

On our way to the next store, we got a little Amish Country ambiance.

Amish Country Ambiance
Amish Country Ambiance

Shop Review: Fiddlesticks

Amanda and I didn’t feel like we were quite done with our day of fabric-y goodness, so she suggested that we head to Vancouver. I always think of British Columbia when I hear Vancouver, but, of course, Amanda meant Washington. The shop we visited was called Fiddlesticks.

Fiddlesticks Quilt Shop
Fiddlesticks Quilt Shop

We actually stopped at another store first, but it was closed, though all signs, including Google, suggested that it should be open. Not closed forever; just closed that day. It didn’t matter, regardless of how much I would have liked to see another store. Fiddlesticks was a great stop. I bought a couple of items, specifically text fabric for the Carpenter’s Wheel backgrounds.

Fiddlesticks: repro area
Fiddlesticks: repro area

The store was light and airy. Some of the shelves were white, which is very appealing to me. I also liked it that the shop catered to a lot of different types of quilters. Modern Domestic was fantastic, but quiltmakers specializing in reproduction quilts would find nothing of interest there. There was a small area highlighting these types of quilts, catering to these quiltmakers at Fiddlesticks.

There were other areas that catered to specialty interests of quiltmakers.

Fiddlesticks: Wool Felt Project Area
Fiddlesticks: Wool Felt Project Area
Fiddlesticks: Front of the Store
Fiddlesticks: Front of the Store

As I said, the shop was open and airy. This came partially from large windows and white paintwork, but also from the apparently new building. The shop was in a strip mall, but not a nasty, low rent strip mall. It was a nice, clean brick building across from a lovely open green space (probably slated for redevelopment, but nice and green right now).

Fiddlesticks: Catch-all Area
Fiddlesticks: Catch-all Area

They had a lot of bright and cheerful fabric. I found lots of batiks and other current fabrics. There was a great catch-all area with charm packs, current tools and notions. Fat quarters, layer cakes and charm packs were everywhere.

I looked at the Lulu Love by Cory Yoder charm pack at several different stores, including this one. I didn’t end up buying it at this shop, but I did eventually buy it in Indiana (more on THAT later). The Lulu Love colors and Moda fabrics were very much in evidence at Fiddlesticks.

The other thing I liked about Fiddlesticks was that it was very clean. They seem to move their merchandise, which I can appreciate.

Fiddlesticks: Back Area
Fiddlesticks: Back Area

My favorite room was in the back. It had the Kaffe Fassett fabrics and the text prints. There was one Kaffe Fassett print that I almost bought for another tunic or a dress. I have a few pieces at home waiting to be sewn, so I held off. I was sorely tempted, however. I love those large flower prints!

Fiddlesticks: Back Area 2
Fiddlesticks: Back Area 2

I saw the Moda text prints that I originally got in mini-charm format for the first time as yardage on bolts. As weird as it sounds, it was interesting to see the various designs that way. Yes, I bought a few pieces for the Carpenter’s Wheel backgrounds.

Fiddlesticks: Longarms
Fiddlesticks: Longarms

The amazing thing about this shop was that they have 2, yes TWO longarm machines. It was interesting to see them in situ. One was working while we were there. I didn’t ask any details, but it looked like the machine was doing some kind of pantograph.

I liked this store and I would recommend a visit. It is an easy drive from Portland.

Quilt Shop Review: Modern Domestic

Modern Domestic
Modern Domestic

Last weekend I went to Portland to visit the YM and attend his last concert of the year.

As a college student, he is busy and was even busier last weekend, because he was working on the tech crew for a play. We slid in little visits here and there and had a good time when we could.

I could have spent time with him Friday afternoon, but instead I went fabric shopping with Amanda. She has recently moved to the Portland area and was free to tour me around. We were able to catch up, talk about books and had a great time.

I missed Modern Domestic on my last visit and had heard a lot of about it. I was very glad to get a chance to take a peek. The store was buzzing with activity. There were about four people working, a class or worktime going on in the back and a few customers.

Modern Domestic: Notions area & classroom
Modern Domestic: Notions area & classroom

I really liked the aesthetic of the shop. Very white walls, wood accents and lots of light and windows. There was a pleasing mix of old an new as well. The hop had an old fashioned mercantile type display case housing Bernina feet.

Everything was neat and orderly and the displays were simple, yet well done. I would let whoever designed the look and feel come and design my workroom. In fact, I would be happy to take over Modern Domestic as my workspace! The owner might have a problem with that and the commute would be daunting. πŸ˜‰

Modern Domestic: Midarm & Longarm
Modern Domestic: Midarm & Longarm

Around the edges of the store was a wide variety of closely curated modern fabrics. When I say closely curated, I mean that they did not have ALL the modern types of fabrics, but the ones they did were excellent and definitely fit in with the overall aesthetic of the shop. One type of modern fabric I did not see was text fabrics. There were a few Carolyn Friedlander map fabrics (Architex??? line), but few, if any, text fabrics. I was looking for them for the Carpenter’s Wheel backgrounds.

Their solid of choice was Kona, though I did see a few Cloud9 bolts as well. No American Made Brands that I saw. Kona does have the most colors available. I just wish they would address the looseness of the weave. Don’t you love their display with heart balloons?

Modern Domestic: FQs
Modern Domestic: FQs

There were also quite a few fat quarters displayed. The shop had a handy cabinet that had to be made for the purpose (or the shop was VERY lucky). Each square could hold about 12 fat quarters.

While they had a lot of fat quarters, they looked like end of the bolt fat quarters. I didn’t see much of their new fabric in the fat quarter bins. I did notice a lot of FQ bundles around with current fabrics. I was tempted by one, but decided on a couple of cuts from favorite prints instead.

There were hanging notions and tools as well (see FQ photo, the section on the right). I liked the way they were displayed, because I could see them all without rummaging.

Modern Domestic: Midarm & Longarm
Modern Domestic: Midarm & Longarm

The shop sells Bernina sewing machines, so a lot of the floor space is taken up with various models. The inventory included a Bernina sit down midarm. They also rent longarm time on a different machine- a Gammil, I think, but I didn’t look closely.

Modern Domestic: Bernina machines
Modern Domestic: Bernina machines
Modern Domestic: Notions area & classroom
Modern Domestic: Notions area & classroom

They sold cabinets as well. Amanda and I stood and admired the one near the thread for awhile.Β The cabinet could hold one of the large throated Berninas, so the main part was quite large. It appeared to be all wood and slightly higher than a regular sit down cabinet. The chair was definitely bar stool height. We wondered if one could stand and sew at it? Also, we wondered where the foot pedal would be placed.

Several BAMers have placed their machines so they can stand and sew. Some of them have health issues that make this a better options and others have space issues. I have been thinking of how my body would like standing at the machine.

Modern Domestic: Notions
Modern Domestic: Notions

I loved the way they showed the notions. I was sometimes confused on the pricing of fabrics and various items, but not the notions. Everything was clearly laid out and labeled, which was really a nice change. I didn’t realize how much I liked seeing the rotary cutters outside of the package or feeling the webbing.

I was also pleased to see that the shop went beyond the “standard offering” of notions that one sees in many shops. This area was closely curated as well.

Everything was very tidy as well. No piles of anything anywhere I could see.

I don’t remember seeing books and magazines, except for the first issue of Quiltfolk, which was on the counter. I am sure they had some and I just missed them.

I didn’t get the “quilt shop” feeling at this shop, whatever that means. I felt like I was in a working studio.

Sugar Pine Quilt Shop

I was in a mood on Friday when we left for Grass Valley. DH said he wanted to leave mid-morning so we could avoid some of the Sacramento/ Friday night traffic. We left just before 1pm and sat in traffic. This just added to my ‘mood.’

Two good things came out of this. I worked on the Ends Donation Top while I waited and Saturday I woke up much happier.

Saturday is a big day for NSGW events, so we were up and at ’em on the early side. The dedication started at 10 and by 10:45, we were free to do our own thing until 1 or so. We off loaded our stuff at the hotel then went looking for the quilt shop. Everything was within walking distance of our hotel so we were able to get our steps in as well.

Sugar Pine Quilt Shop, Grass Valley, Calif
Sugar Pine Quilt Shop, Grass Valley, Calif

We found Sugar Pine Quilt Shop fairly easily, especially after I figured out the correct address. Yes, DH came with, so he cramped my style a little bit.

Sugar Pine Quilt Shop, looking towards front door
Sugar Pine Quilt Shop, looking towards front door

Still, the people were friendly and the shop was stuffed with fabric, patterns, fat quarters, tools, notions and everything quilty.

Customers walk up to a patio and walk into the shop through French Doors. To the right, when you walk in, is the cash register/payment station (on the left in the photo – white counter). A bunch of other rooms are off of that room. If you turn left, you can make a U-turn into the room with repros, batting and a lot of books and the cutting counters. If you turn, also to the left, but not as sharply, you go into a room with Kaffe prints, notions and non-kid novelty prints. I saw a lot of Frida Kahlo related prints, Dia de las Muertos prints and Hawaiian shirt prints.

They told me that they try to keep fat quarters of all their fabrics on hand, but if I couldn’t find one, they would be happy to cut one for me. FQs were stuck in between the fabric and the bolt in many cases, which was awkward when I tried to carry a bolt around. They kept flapping around. They didn’t fall out, though, so that was good.

In the main room, aside from the cashier, I saw a good number of Fig Tree prints.

Sugar Pine Quilt Shop, Interior
Sugar Pine Quilt Shop, Interior

Behind the main room were two more rooms connected by a large opening. I couldn’t tell if this building used to be a house and, if so, how the rooms would have been laid out.

The shop mostly had fabrics that wouldn’t fit on shelves in baskets on the floor rather than just on the floor. This kept the bolts corralled, but made them a little hard to look at.

The place was STUFFED with patterns. Everywhere I looked there were patterns. They had a large selection of books, as well, most of which I did not recognize. One of the books I saw was More Layer Cake, Jelly Roll and Charm Quilts by Pam and Nicki Lintott. I have to be sure and tell Frances. I didn’t look at it, sadly, because it was way up high on a shelf and DH was waiting… I’ll find it somewhere else.

Sugar Pine Quilts, Interior
Sugar Pine Quilts, Interior

That blue bag was full of walnuts. Not fabric walnuts, but real walnuts. Don’t ask me why, I didn’t ask and I don’t know. They might have been shelling them to make crushed walnuts for pincushion filling*?

There was a lot going on at this shop in terms of prep for sales. They were cutting kits for pattern packets, sorting patterns, putting away fabrics after cutting FQs. It was busy.

Not a ton of modern fabrics, but enough variety to keep me interested. I had never seen Marcus solids and had a chance to see them at Sugar Pine.

I would recommend a visit to Grass Valley. I took some time to look at the shops in their lively downtown streets. There are a lot of interesting shops that have things I might actually buy. It is a good place to visit in addition to having a quilt shop.

Visit!
Sugar Pine Quilt Shop
452 S Auburn St
Grass Valley, CA 95945
(530) 272-5308

 

 

 

 

 

*Due to potential nut allergies, I use plastic pellets to give some heft to pincushions. I have never seen them at quilt shops, so I buy them at Beverly’s.

Shop Review: Bunny Hop – North Coast

Bunny Hop Quilt Shop
Bunny Hop Quilt Shop

It really was a beautiful day on Saturday, but that meant that my poor phone was having trouble taking photos – lots of glare.

Bunny Hop is located in an old Victorian. The inside does not appear to have been modified much, including the kitchen, which looked freshly painted and was decorated with a cherry theme. They made the inside work, which pleased me. I dislike it when historic buildings are chopped up without sensitivity. Eureka, Ferndale and Fortuna have some great Victorians.

Bunny Hop room 3
Bunny Hop room 3

In contrast to Stitch, this shop’s decor was in keeping with the Victorian style of the house. They had a fair amount of 1930s repros but they also had other bright and cheerful fabrics that I wouldn’t categorize as repro, but not Modern either. The fabric they had was similar to Scruffy Quilts (normal??). The decor definitely tended towards repro.

Bunny Hop: Room 2
Bunny Hop: Room 2

They had some precuts – mostly charm packs and mini-charms. On the ironing board were some Uppercase charm packs, which tempted me. I resisted. They had a great selection of dots and had they placed together. There were patterns and notions and samples everywhere. I realize now that I didn’t really get a good look at some of the notions they had away from the cash register (DH was waiting in the car).

Bunny Hop: Room 2 dots detail
Bunny Hop: Room 2 dots detail

The rooms were on the large side – or well laid out so the place didn’t feel crowded. The shop owner seemed to have a good FQ policy and they were placed near the like fabric on the bolt. I bought a couple of text fabric FQs for the Carpenter’s Wheel and one of the Studio E blue to which I am attracted.

Bunny Hop Main Room
Bunny Hop Main Room

They also had a nice selection of white on whites, which made me think of TFQ. I bought one called gingham for a background. It had a white printed (a la Blueberry Park) grid on it. Not sure what quilt I will use it for, but there is no shortage of options. Bright white is something that I find goes well with the bright colors I use.

The main room was also where they had notions, including a nice selection of scissors, Renaissance Ribbons and their blue fabrics.

Bunny Hop: Room 2 detail 2
Bunny Hop: Room 2 detail 2

The project on the wall of their workroom was appealing. I couldn’t get a closeup view. It was 16 patches set with lozenges so it looked like the 16 patches were Sawtooth Stars.

The photo, left, was taken in the same room as the dots (above). They had some kids prints along with the repros in this room.

Bunny Hop: Room 1
Bunny Hop: Room 1

In, probably what used to be, the Service Porch Bunny Hop had their interfacings, fusibles and a lot of Sullivan embroidery floss.Β  The floss was mostly in hanks rather than spools like the recent Sue Spargo and Aurifil purchases I have made. There were some in balls. I haven’t heard of this company and didn’t buy any. Isn’t that a GREAT cabinet?

Bunny Hop Project Area
Bunny Hop Project Area

Finally, of course, throughout the shop, they had samples and projects. This area was particularly cheerful. You can see the red, yellow, green and white theme they had going. This was another area with a number of books and patterns, which I did not take the time to explore in depth. πŸ™

There was a pincushion made from selvedges in a small bread loaf tin (second shelf under the bag and to the left) that was fun. I am not sure how it would be to put pins in, but it would make a cute decoration for someone who enjoys selvedge projects. It is also another way to use up those selvedges.

Bunny Hop selvedge pincushion idea
Bunny Hop selvedge pincushion idea

I enjoyed this shop, not only because it was new, but because of the cheerful quality of the projects and the fabric. I was also pleased when the cashier told me about Stitch. It is well worth a visit, especially if you are in town visiting a number of quilt shops.

Visit Bunny Hop Quilt Shop
Address: 1809 Albee Street, Eureka, CA 95501
Phone: 707-497-6356
Email: info@bunnyhopquiltshop.com
Website: http://www.bunnyhopquiltshop.com/

Shop Review: Stitch – North Coast

Fun Stitch sign
Fun Stitch sign

This is a fantastic shop. I wanted everything and bought more than I had planned. I am so glad I went and wish this shop was in my neighborhood. I am probably lucky it isn’t.

Stitch: view from the street
Stitch: view from the street

I was directed to Stitch by the kind lady at Bunny Hop Quilt Shop, another shop I missed last year. Stitch opened in January 2016 and I didn’t visit last year. DH reminded me that we spent the day wandering around Fortuna trying to get a library card. I don’t remember anything about quilt shops last year and I can’t find anything on the blog so perhaps I didn’t visit quilt shops last year? I must not have been feeling well. πŸ˜‰

Stitch: view from the street
Stitch: view from the street

The outside of the building isn’t anything to write home about. It needs a good coat of paint and some glossy white trim. The inside of the quilt shop is a paradise. It is small, but has a great feel, wonderful fabric, lovely displays and a general air of things happening. The fabrics were all modern and current. I never liked light blue, but after seeing it on the walls of this shop, I might change my mind. The shop had the feel I want for my bedroom.

Stitch: View towards the street
Stitch: View towards the street

While I was there two ladies were in the small classroom making modern Dresden Plate type blocks that made me want to sit down and make one as well. The owner was calling out encouragement to them while she helped me.

The shop is compromised of one large room (photos left and above) along with a small room behind the cutting counter that had a design wall with interesting blocks on it. As mentioned, there was also a small classroom. In the classroom was a wall of sale fabrics.

Stitch: Apron idea
Stitch: Apron idea

The displays were also wonderful. Why didn’t I ever think of using a border print for an apron? Genius.

The whole front corner made me think of Friend Julie as it was grey and yellow themed. In addition to the tea toweling, of course. The apron pattern is the Church Ladies apron that I made, but shorter. And better looking. The fabric is great.

Stitch display detail
Stitch display detail

Also in that corner was a display that included a tote bag and a Sew Together Bag. The kits are for the quilt on the wall in the photo above.

I saw the crab fabric on the Hawthorne Threads site and almost bought it. I think it is interesting, but, after seeing it, am glad I didn’t.

Stitch: Poolside Tote
Stitch: Poolside Tote

Finally, they had an example of the Noodlehead Poolside Tote (sorry, slightly blurry). I LOVE the grey dot straps and the bold print. I bought some of that grey and am thinking of making something similar with one of my man Phil’s (Philip Jacobs) flower prints. I think a larger bag might be better, but we will see. I need another tote (and project, for that matter) like I need another hole in my head. Still, the idea of using that grey with a bold print is very appealing. I really, REALLY need some serious sewing time.

The cherry on top of the ice cream sundae was the Sue Spargo AND Auriful embroidery threads. They didn’t have as much Sue Spargo as Thistle Dew, but they had enough to keep me happy.

I really wish this shop well. I also wish it were in San Francisco. It is an incentive for me to go to this Native Sons event again.

Visit Stitch!
385 Main St
Ferndale, CA 95540
(707) 786-5007

 

Stitch Envy
Stitch Envy

This is a funny view of the front of the shop.

Fabric Garden Visit

Fabric Garden, Marconi Ave, Sacramento
Fabric Garden, Marconi Ave, Sacramento

The other weekend, in addition to Runs with Scissors and Thistle Dew, I also visited the Fabric Garden for a second time.

I didn’t take photos the second time around. I think I got distracted, so these photos are from my first visit, which was last Fall for the Admission Day Celebration. The skies were bluer and the air warmer.

I went to look for the Hansel and Gretel kit, which I have decided to make for my little niece to keep Red and Coral company. The very nice shop ladies were successful in selling me a multitude of fabrics (for dresses, probably) and a charm pack of Poppy Mae by Robin Pickens for Moda. Yes, Moda fabrics. I loved the motifs too much to think about the fraying I would have to worry about.

Fabric Garden Interior View
Fabric Garden Interior View

The shop is light and airy and clean, though it is also stuffed to the gills and there is plenty to look at. I also think they have a nice variety of fabrics that suit many desires. They do only have a small section of repros, e.g. Civil War. I didn’t notice whether they had any 1930s prints. The wide variety of other fabrics from tone-on-tones to modern was really pleasing. They had a lot of pre-cuts, especially charm packs, though they were all packaged to it was hard to look at all the prints. I was able to look at the mini-charms to get an idea of what the Poppy Mae looked like and that worked for me.

I also liked their section of embroidery patterns and supplies. There were tea towel type projects as well as wool felt designs and patterns.

The people at this shop are very friendly and helpful, though they don’t hover. Between this shop and Thistle Dew, it is worth a trip to Sacramento. The other shops I have visited make it a quiltmaking haven and a weekend’s good quilt fun.

Fabric Garden Purchases -1/2017
Fabric Garden Purchases -1/2017

 

Runs with Scissors Quilt Shop

Runs with Scissors Motto
Runs with Scissors Motto

I made a circuit of the shops, mostly driving on surface streets. The second shop I visited during my #politicalwifery weekend was Runs with Scissors. Great name, huh? Runs with Scissors was a lot smaller and had fewer items than Thistle Dew. Still, I found some nice things.

I had some trouble locating this shop once I found the address/mall in which it resided. It is tucked below and behind a sidewalk, but is truly net to Goodwill as the online resources say. I don’t think I could see it from the street. The mall looks a little seedy, but the shop is bright and clean and has new and modern fabric and supplies.

One thing in which I was interested was the Scottie Dog patterns. You might remember that DH and I went looking for Scottie Dog quilt shop on our 2015 visit to the North Coast and found that it was permanently closed. I think that ScottieDogquilts.com is their new home. I ended up buying the Modern Meteor pattern because I have an idea for a quilt for one of the nephews and the pattern reminded me of my Star Sampler quilt, an idea with which I am not yet finished.

I also bought an apron pattern called the Chatterbox Apron because I liked the shape. After I got back to the hotel, I thought that it might be by the same designer as my Church Ladies apron. Not a good sign since I needed a translator for that one. Clearly, however, I like the designer’s style. I have an idea to make aprons as gifts. I hope not to need a translator now that I have made one of the line’s patterns.

Runs with Scissors motto
Runs with Scissors motto

The shop was filled with people making a group project or taking a class, so the place had a cheerful feel. I really liked the decorations they had including the mottos/sayings. I have been told it is slightly modified from a Molly Ivins poem or essay, however, I found it listed as a saying from Hunter S. Thompson. The above is slightly revised.

Thistle Dew Quilt Shop

I had a #politicalwifery event over the weekend. While DH was in meetings, I went to 3 quilt shops, Thistle Dew Quilt Shop, runs with Scissors and I made a second visit to the Fabric Garden.

Thistle Dew Quilt Shop - outside
Thistle Dew Quilt Shop – outside

The name “Thistle Dew” made me think of Laura Ashley prints, so I didn’t have high hopes. I was VERY pleasantly surprised to find an awesome quilt shop experience. It was light, bright and cheerful. The people were friendly and helpful, but didn’t hover. It was that hard to find and though information said parking would be difficult, I found a spot right in front.

Sue Spargo Embroidery Thread Display
Sue Spargo Embroidery Thread Display

When I walked in, the first thing I saw was 4 large cases of Sue Spargo embroidery threads. I almost swooned! I love embroidery floss. I love Sue Spargo’s work and have been admiring her book, Stitches to Savor: A Celebration of Designs by Sue Spargo. It is a kind of coffee table book where you can see the stitching. I have been drooling over the designs for awhile. I didn’t even know she had come out with a line of embroidery threads. The threads were different weights. Yes, I bought several. I was pleased to restrain myself, because I wanted ALL THE THREAD.

Cosmo Embroidery Thread Case
Cosmo Embroidery Thread Case

I was already in heaven when I turned and found an entire case of Cosmo embroidery thread. I really couldn’t believe my luck. I remember seeing a big case of this thread at QuiltCon last year. I don’t know for sure, but it looks like they have all the colors. I didn’t buy any then. I love the way they arranged the colors in this case as well. Again, I wanted ALL THE THREAD.

I was also pleased to find that one their instructors filled in for Sue Spargo last year when she was sick. I don’t know if the woman is certified, but with the threads and the high level instructor, I would say that they have classes in Sue’s stitches and techniques and are within driving distance.

After selecting several spools and hanks, I went to look at fabric, which they did have. Lots of it. Bright cheerful prints, lots of text and low volume fabrics, many dots, plenty of solid. Generally, they had a great selection.

I was also pleased at the selection of notions. Theirs was not the standard selection of Dritz notions that new store often have. This was 10+ feet of very special notions, including so many needles my head was spinning.

As soon as I got hope and saw SIL, I told her we had to make a trip to Sacramento to visit quilt shops. There are several worth visiting. I guess I had better make some finishes. I told my mom about the store and will definitely visit again.

Thistle Dew Quilt Shoppe
10127 Fair Oaks Blvd
Fair Oaks, CA 95628
Tel:+1-916-967-5479

Bolt

Bolt - front of shop
Bolt – front of shop

The other shop I visited in Portland was Bolt. It is near a really nice neighborhood that reminded me of Berkeley.

I have heard about this shop, but I don’t remember where. I wasn’t sure what to expect and was pleasantly surprised.

This is a small shop and a number of my photos were blurry, so you’ll get a taste of the shop then you’ll have to go and visit yourself.

The shop has a respectable amount of quilting weight fabrics. They also have interesting garment fabrics including rayon, knits and non-garment fabrics like laminates.

I saw a lot of indie patterns as well. I think they were mostly garments, but I am sure there were a few bags and quilts as well.

Bolt
Bolt

I was thrilled to find that they had wool felt. Real wool felt. I have seen it online, but have never felt confident enough to buy any without feeling it and/or seeing it in person. I bought two pieces to make…something.

The shop also had a wool-rayon blend felt. I bought a number of pieces of that in order to make a kind of garden scene. I got an idea in my head and will run with it when I am done binding Flowerburst.

Bolt
Bolt

Bolt
2136 NE Alberta St
Portland, OR 97211
1-503-287-2658

Cool Cottons

Cool Cottons
Cool Cottons

Last week I sped up to Portland to pick up the YM from college. Yes, he has completed his freshman year of college. I can’t believe it! Time has flown. Stay tuned about whether he finished successfully. I am sure he did, but…. well, you know.

I drove up in two days, which is hard. It is about 700 miles and that is two full days of driving. Of course, I stopped at a couple of quilt shops along the route – Ocean Waves Quilt Shop in Eureka (always a favorite and reviewed previously) and Forget-Me-Knots in Bandon. I was in Bandon in August on my way back from dropping the YM off and reviewed the shop at that time. Both are great shops and I didn’t see anything that would turn me off from visiting again.

The Young Man had some errands on campus on Friday regarding his fall schedule and I needed to not turn right around and drive 350 miles, so we did his errands and then went our separate ways for a few hours. He needed a nap and I needed to see some quilt shops. I had to drive but it wasn’t flat out highway driving.

First stop: Cool Cottons. I had heard about this shop and tried to find it last time, but we missed the exit. I checked the directions again and found that the hotel we stayed in last time was farther south than the interchange we needed, which was the problem. As a result, mom and I got lost on our way there and gave up. I was determined this time and found my way.

Cool Cottons - front of the store
Cool Cottons – front of the store

I was a little scared by the owner when I arrived, but she turned out to be very nice and very chatty. We talked a little about the transformation of the house where the shop was located. Of course, we also talked about projects.

The store is the bottom floor of a Craftsman style house. The transformation was very well done. It was also sensitively done, which is nice for such an architecturally interesting house.

Cool Cottons - front room
Cool Cottons – front room

I loved their fabric and wanted almost EVERYTHING. I restrained myself and tried to buy things that I needed. I found some of the background fabric (see below) for the quilt I started in the Victoria Findlay Wolfe class. I wasn’t even looking for it, but when I saw it – well, what I think it the right color since I didn’t have a swatch, I bought enough for a background. If this isn’t the right color, I have enough for a background on another quilt. Buying this fabric means I have to actually work on that quilt! πŸ˜‰

Cool Cottons - enclosed porch
Cool Cottons – enclosed porch

This shop has mostly modern fabrics, though not so many of them are the big prints. I saw lots of tone-on-tones / blender type fabrics as well as the various fabrics with motifs that come in lots of different colors like the Lizzy House Pearl Bracelets, the Timeless Treasures cross hatch fabrics, etc.

The shop had a lot of GREAT greys. I resisted, though I didn’t want to.

The selection of blues and turquoises was fantastic. They had a lot of in between colors, such as aqua, blue green, dark blue (like that StudioE blue I like so much) as well. Again, I was tempted to get one of each. Again, I restrained myself.

Cool Cottons - Stairs
Cool Cottons – Stairs

The stairs are used as display space for some of the solids, which was a great idea. In general, I thought the space was used very well for fabric. It was functional, appealing and very light.

The shop carried American Made Brands of solids. Yay! I didn’t see any Konas, but there could have been some.

I also saw an almost-full, if not full line of Peppered Cottons by Pepper Cory. Frances has talked about her and her fabric on the Off Kilter Quilt podcast. I hadn’t seen them in person before, so that was nice.

Cool Cottons - back room
Cool Cottons – back room

I would have bought more if they had had the fabrics I wanted in fat quarters. I know I go back and forth on fat quarters, but I am in restraint mode, so I am going with FQs some of the time lately. I am not complaining at all about the fat quarters at all. There were plenty of FQs in the shop, just not the ones I was considering. Also, I didn’t ask if they cut FQs, which I should have done to make this a complete review.

I was also pleased to see a really nice selection of sale fabrics. The two at the bottom of the photo below were both on sale. I will use the blue for the next food quilt and the pink was just interesting. There were also sale FQs.

Cool Cottons - back room
Cool Cottons – back room

Prices were $11-12 per yard, which I have found to be normal in urban areas.

The neighborhood is interesting. There weren’t a lot of traffic lights, so I got some steps in by walking a few blocks to a signal with a cross walk. There is a nice looking bakery for non-GF people, a couple of interesting vintage shops and some boutiques. I had coffee at a place called Coava after my fiber expedition.

This shop was stuffed with fabric, but didn’t come across as messy. There were shelves of fabric, nicely arranged, in almost every available space. This is a shop I will definitely visit again.

Coffee and Fabric
Coffee and Fabric

Above is my art shot of coffee and fabric. πŸ˜‰

Cool Cottons
2417 SE Hawthorne Blvd
Portland, OR 97214

coolcottons@hotmail.com
503.232.0417

Monday: 10 – 6
Tuesday: 10 – 6
Wednesday: 10 – 6
Thursday: 12 – 8
Friday: 10 – 6
Saturday: 10 – 6
Sunday: 12 – 5

Oroville Quilt Shops, pt.4

I know you must be exhausted by all of these quilt shops. I know I was by the time I got to the Rabbit Hole. I almost bailed on this shop, but since it was on my way I decided to stop in. Definitely worth the stop!

The Rabbit Hole
The Rabbit Hole

The last shop I visited was called the Rabbit Hole and the name was very apt! As I went into each room in the shop, I found another behind it. As I said, I was tired by the time I got to this shop and couldn’t focus as well as I would have liked, but I could focus enough to see that they had A LOT of fabric.

Rabbit Hole - fabric and panels
Rabbit Hole – fabric and panels

They also had a ton of panels, so if you are looking for panels, give them a call or stop by. Those flower panels might make an excellent One Block Wonder a la Pam’s piece and my Peacock. I couldn’t believe how crammed this place was with different types of fabric – lots of quilting cottons, certainly, but also net mesh, wool, etc. As you can see on the photo, they have a lot of patterns as well.

the Rabbit Hole -Novelty Prints and Stripes
the Rabbit Hole -Novelty Prints and Stripes

I was impressed with the number of novelty prints and stripes. It made my head swim with the possibilities of pillowcases, but I reined myself in and turned away from them. I still have a few pieces of Christmas fabric I can use to make pillowcases.

I didn’t recognize a lot of the fabric, which tells me that they have a different eye than I am used to seeing. This is probably why this shop is successful with another shop a couple minutes away.

The Rabbit Hole - Novelty prints
The Rabbit Hole – Novelty prints

You can see how large the room is and this is just one of about 4-5 rooms of fabric.

Cutting tables were scattered throughout the shop. The one in the phone (right) was in the very back of the store. I was a little surprised to see as nobody was in the shop except for me. I learned the reason for its placement when a large group of people (yes, there were some men!) came in the shop and filled the place with chatter and laughter. I had been there about 15 minutes and was wondering how much fabric they could move. I had my answer!

I think the newer fabrics were in the front of the shop. These rooms were small and there were several bolts of Asian style fabrics as well as projects made with them. The second room (through the doorway in the above left photo) also had baby style prints – soft colors, Minkee (or similar).

The shop also had a longarm and that room was not free from fabric either. A lot more panels were hanging in this room as well.

Open road with clouds
Open road with clouds

I headed out after this shop and went back to the hotel and to my Political Wifery duties. It was a somewhat rainy day, but it made for beautiful clouds.

See part 1 of this travelogue.
See part 2 of this travelogue.
See part 3 of this travelogue

Oroville Quilt Shops, pt.3

The Morning Star ladies suggested that I go to Chico to the two quilt shops there rather than all the way to Colusa. They said that the shop in Colusa was great, but that it was about an hour away and I would have to travel almost an hour to get back to Oroville. Chico, on the other hand, was about 20 minutes away and on my way back to Oroville.
I was started to have enough of visiting quilt shops, but wasn’t quite ready to give up, so I took their advice. Sorry, Colusa! Another time.
Cathy's Sew & Vac / Honey Run
Cathy’s Sew & Vac / Honey Run

The first shop I visited was called Honey Run Quilters. I have seen this shop’s booth at PIQF and their shop is even better than the booth. The funny thing about the shop is that it is in Cathy’s Sew & Vac. I have never seen a larger Sew & Vac type shop. This place was the size of a Walgreen’s! Tucked inside was Honey Run. In addition to Honey Run, sewing machines and vacuum cleaners, the Sew & Vac sold barbecues! You could keep your male companion busy looking at those babies while you shop! They also had a ‘husband’s couch’, if your man isn’t into grilling.

Honey Run Sale Fabrics
Honey Run Sale Fabrics

Outside Honey Run were the sale fabrics which were comprised of 3 long aisles of fabric on racks 2 bolts high. These were good fabrics, too, not old crap. They ran about $5/yard. They also had notions, thread and needles outside the actual Honey Run shop.

Honey Run Shop in a Shop
Honey Run Shop in a Shop

Inside Honey Run, the shop was PACKED with fabric. All kinds of fabric. I was told upon entry that they were having a 25% off sale. Either I scored a bonus or was doomed. πŸ˜‰

Honey Run fabrics
Honey Run fabrics

I passed up a lime green flower print from Philip Jacobs, but picked up some low volume prints.Β  I have more than the Carpenter’s Wheels on my mind, I think. I am cursing myself for skipping my man Phil’s flower print, but what can I do? I will use the print on the right in a bag, I think. We will see.

At the checkout counter, I asked if I could take some photos and gave them a card. The woman at the counter asked if I teach and I told her that I teach and suggested the Renewed Jelly Roll Race quilt. I have no idea if that will come to anything, but I was very flattered to be asked.

Β I could have bought a lot more. I liked the shop and would definitely go there again. They had great fabric and I would love to go to that shop again. It is so out of the way, I don’t know when I will be by again.
Address: 2418 Cohasset Rd, Chico, CA 95926
See part 1 of this travelogue.
See part 2 of this travelogue.