I was away for a week in Redding, California for a Native Sons ‘Grand Parlor’. You will remember that DH and I and SIL and I made pillows for this organization over the past few years.
Redding is about 4 hours north of us and to the east a bit. DH has been a Grand Trustee for the Native Sons of the Golden West for about 5 years and decided to run for an Executive Board position. He ran unopposed, which is not a given, but still campaigned like he had an opponent. that meant that I needed to be with him. Of course, if my mom had not been available and willing to help out with the Young Man, I would have needed to stay home. Fortunately, she is a saint and was happy to stay at our house, shuttle the Y.M. to school and cook for him. I sure she did not harangue as much as I do about homework. She also hired a bassoon teacher. The work on the campaign paid off. DH is now Grand 3rd Vice President. I cannot remember shaking so many hands, being kissed by so many people or talking to so many people in one week in my life. I am sure that RUSH surpassed this number (400 or so) or was close.
To deal with the grueling schedule and constant smiling, I snuck away to write blog posts, exercise and GO TO QUILT SHOPS. I found one before I left, but while I was there, the ladies were kind enough to tell me about two more. I only visited one, though.
The first shop I visited was called Sew What Quilts. It looked exactly like the photo on Google Streetview and I saw it as we exited the freeway upon arrival. It was less than half a mile from our hotel. Perfect.
The outside looks fairly mall-ish and non-descript, but the inside is light and airy and they have a lot of interesting samples. There was some new fabric (Joel Dewberry Notting Hill), lots of batiks, several shelves of Philip Jacobs and Martha Negley, a couple of shelves of blacks and whites, Bali Pops, Kona Solids and lots more. there was room for a lot more fabric, but I didn’t ask them if they were low and nobody offered me that information.
There was a class or a class sample or something in progress. This simple nine patch looks great with these fabrics. I especially like the fussy cut flower. I am pretty sure this isn’t a Disappearing Nine Patch, but it could well be if the maker put the fussy cut flower in one of the side squares. Just a thought
The shop had these fabrics on the shelf, which was nice. I didn’t buy any, but love the fresh, ‘summer drink’ feel of the colors.
From this picture, you can see how large the store is. It has very high ceilings and plenty of floor space. They had really nice decorations and had fabric kites hanging from the ceilings, which looked very cheerful. I am not exactly sure if they have classes, though I assume they do. I haven’t looked at the website.
Sew What Quilts! had a sale going on for books. the sale was that you could buy one book and get a second book of equal or lesser value for free and I took advantage. I looked at all of them and bought the Harriet Hargrave Senior Year book and also the new Christine Barnes color book. I’ll use the former for tutorials and the later for podcast episodes with Sandy. Getting them both was less expensive than buying both on Amazon.
In the photo to the left you can see the wall (far) that is perpendicular to the entrance. In the middle of the room, you can see the looms,spinning wheels and various equipment for the yarn people. Sew What Quilts and Yarn (real name). I think that it is a good idea to have yarn and quilt fabrics together. It seems to me that a lot quilt people are also knitters. I would like to knit more, but I don’t.
There were a lot of fluorescent lights in all the places I went around Redding: the hotel, the quilt shops, restaurants. Fluorescent lights are not kind to my face and hair. I looked in various mirrors and felt quite geezerly.
At the end of the row, you can see the Kona solids and some semi solids/tone-on-tones as well.
Please click on the photo and make it larger, because the fat quarters are displayed very nicely. You can also see the buttons the shop has for sale.
The shop was getting ready for some kind of yarn trunk show and their preparations were fun to watch. I didn’t want to stay and see the trunk show so I tried to hurry and look at everything.
The shop also has a shop dog. She was nice, but barked a little when the shop women put a new shawl on display.
I also went to Sew Simple, a shop one block away from my hotel and on the way back to the hotel.
Again it was a shop in a strip mall. Again, it was HUGE. Rather than being a large open space like Sew What, this space was divided into smaller spaces with fabric, notions, Berninas (yes, they are a Bernina dealer), classroom, kitchen, classroom. I am not sure I have ever seen a larger classroom than the one at this store.
I didn’t buy a lot at the shop. The fabric wasn’t all Civil War fabric, but their fabric didn’t have the bright vibe that I like.
This shop had an unbelievably large selection of thread. There was a lot of specialty thread. I assume that a lot of it was suitable for machine embroidery. The shop had the largest supply of Mettler I have seen in a while.
I was also impressed with their notions. They had several types of Sewline pencils, all sizes of rotary blades and lots of Paper Pieces paper piecing patterns. I am not sure I have ever seen these patterns in a store.
I have to say that shops in the Bay Area are smaller than these stores because of property costs.
As I said, the space was divided into several areas. At some point the space was probably multiple storefronts.
While there weren’t really what I would consider bright fabrics, the shop did have fabrics tending towards bright – some dots, stripes. The colors just weren’t….bright enough for me. The reds weren’t pinky reds or even scarlet, they were tending towards blood red, but weren’t quite there.
Sew Simple did still have some of the Circa 1934 fabrics that I liked. They had a couple of blots of the number fabrics. Call them if you need some for a project. I know they had the cream numbers on a red background and I think they had red numbers on a cream background.
The brights I did see were in the baby room and were flannels. They had a quilt made from Fizz fabric by P&B Textiles. You can see the quilt in the upper left hand corner of the photo. I would have bought more of it, but they only had the quilt. They didn’t seem to have the fabric.
The crib was filled with bolts of fabric. It was a little hard to access, but filled completely and cute. In every room, there were tons of quilts on the walls. There was a cohesive look in the whole store – creamy, not quite country, not really bright. Hard to describe.
I keep running into this Amish Block of the Month quilt. I saw it on the City Quilter site a few months ago and I saw it again this past week. I have always loved Amish style quilts and this one keeps following me around. My first quilt, The Sampler, was inspired by Amish quilts, but definitely not Amish style.
I have enough projects! I have enough fabric! My country house isn’t ready yet for quilts. But I really like it. I like the way the log cabins form the legs of Sawtooth Star. I like the shading. I like the pieced border.
I am not sure why I bought the magazines, except that I was looking for projects that I will make for the NSGW wives/ladies that help me with the events I need to organize during DH’s next few years. I know I want to design a little purse or carrier that can hold their cards, pencil and note pad. A number of ladies play cards while waiting around for their husbands to finish meetings and they didn’t have anything cuter to carry the supplies in than a ziploc bag. Of course, they may want to keep them dray,thus the ziploc, so I will have to think about that. Laminated cotton?
On our way home, we stopped in Vacaville for a late lunch. As we exited the freeway, Jeanie, MIL’s friend, pointed out a quilt shop. I didn’t even know she was well trained. 😉 I looked at it longingly as we ate lunch and finally said I would walk over and take a look while the rest of the party finished eating. They decided to come along, so we finished eating and drove over. It is called a Quilted Heart.
I liked it. They had the little 2″ Moda charm packs, the new Camille Roskelley line, a nice selection of batiks and, again, a boatload of thread. I bought one of the mini charm packs so I could look at Happy Go Lucky in person and see if there was yardage I wanted to buy. They sold machines as well and there seemed to be a guy in the back doing repairs. I promised I would only stay for 10 minutes, so I didn’t take many photos.
They had lots and lots of samples for such a small space. I am actually quite impressed with the variety of samples I have seen at shops lately.