Posts Tagged ‘friendship’
so says our sweet customer, Louise, who brought us this clever and fun handmade Christmas card!
Each piece is just a little fabric snippet, and she fussy cut the holly leaves and berries from fabric she had on hand! So cute and so clever…I love it!
You might remember the Christmas card Louise made for us last year…I posted about it here. I treasure these cards from Louise because they are so beautifully made and I know they are made with love! I wish I was half as creative as Louise is!
We get many Christmas cards each year from family, friends and business associates. I used to keep all of the cards, but it just gets to be too much after a while; so now I cut off the front pictures and donate them to a charitable organization that recycles the pictures into new cards. But every once in a while, we get a card that is a treasure unto itself and those I hold onto, to be enjoyed season after season.
This handmade gem is one that I will treasure for years to come. My friend Louise brought this to me at the shop several days ago. She made the card using cheater fabric that she ‘pieced’ together to make the top and borders of the tiny little quilt; the fabric is glued to the card stock and laminated. The photo makes it look very large, but the card is only about 4″ x 6″! A sweet gift and wonderful reminder of our special friendship that developed through our love of quilting.
I’m back from my trip to Minnesota/Wisconsin, rested and ready to get back to work. NOT! Let’s just say that in reality I’m back, I’m unpacked, and I’m tired and overwhelmed with everything that has piled up while I was gone. Was it worth it? Absolutely!!! The Rags to Riches Shopowner Retreat with Terry Atkinson was so much fun, and the Minnesota Quilt Shop Hop was fun and different for me, too. I came home with so many ideas for classes, samples and displays for the shop that it has been difficult to assimilate all the notes and pictures I took – I am making progress, though, so you’ll be seeing the results soon.
I realized while on this trip how rejuvenating it is to have time to myself. I thoroughly enjoyed the down time and the opportunity to just relax with no demands. I loved hanging out with such a great group of women at the retreat, and feel that I’ve made some great friends through that experience. It is nice to be home and getting back to my routine, but I can’t wait until next year to go again!
Terry and her assistant, Roseann, were such gracious hosts. They thought of everything. Roseann, being the creative person that she is, made us all little treats, which we found at our sewing stations when we arrived. A personalized notebook, handmade cover!, and a little canvas place card with our initial and a quote with a little bling! My quote read “You will soon take a very pleasant and successful trip.” Truer words were never spoken! Aren’t these adorable?!?!?
I can’t show you several of the projects we worked on yet because the patterns are not due to be published until September. We made two of Terry’s newest patterns, so watch for my samples in the shop in the next few weeks. Everyone’s fabric choices were so different and each time a finish was recorded, we all just couldn’t stop marveling at how beautiful each project was … and you know Terry’s patterns are always so well written and user friendly. Now I know why – they are tested over and over by “real” quilters until every step is as clear as can be. OK, enough about the projects I can’t share …
Here’s Jason, our personal chef for the week! Oh my! He made the most amazing food, each meal was better than the last if that could be possible! And he is so much fun, regaling us with stories of his children and laughing right along with us as we all shared “war stories” during meal time. Each night at dinner, Terry would have a specific theme, and Jason would tailor the menu to fit the theme. In addition to catering, Jason also owns an authentic drive-in restaurant in Augusta, WI called Tep’s Drive-In, complete with carhops! We ate lunch there on our last day, and true to form, the food was wonderful. Even LouAnn got in on the act:
Here she is snagging an onion ring from Shelley. Notice it is a ‘Q’ ? See they thought of everything, I told you! That’s Lynn in the background, studiously avoiding the camera!
LouAnn is hanging out with the mustard & ketchup, while Julie and Terry keep a close eye on her antics. I just couldn’t watch her all the time!
Jason and LouAnn saying good-bye! I really think he was sad to see us all go. I know I’m going to miss his fabulous meals, but it is probably a good thing I don’t live close or I’d weigh a TON!
The entertainment was non-stop! On our last day, “Super Shel” and “Easy E” entertained us with an original rap compilation. While Super Shel (Shelley) was rapping the lyrics, Easy E (Elaine) was in the background with “zipper” accompaniment for music. It was so hysterical, and captured many of our “moments” from the retreat. Terry has the lyrics, and I’m hoping she’ll post them to her blog soon. I’ll be sure to let you know when she does.
A wonderful week with a wonderful group of women. So sad to see it end, but we’re all planning for next year already!
P.S. I just noticed this is my 100th post and that means it’s time for a giveaway to celebrate! Give me a few days to come up with something – it has to be good!
Yesterday I was invited to “play” with the Silver Thimble Quilt Club at their annual Summer Stitch-in. I arrived a little early (but there were others much more anxious than I was apparently who arrived well before me!) and it took me nearly an hour to get unpacked and set up to sew. I think I mentioned that I took far more than I could ever possibly get done in 12 hours, but I was optimistic. I did get a little done, in between the laughter and the eating and the visiting with friends. Unfortunately I can’t show you what I accomplished because it is a mystery quilt that I’m working on with the Batty Babes and I don’t want them to see it yet! Let me just say that I am loving how it is turning out, though.
Pat is offering optional mini projects for the group to work on at various times throughout the week, and Monday’s project from Sweet Home Quilt Co. was the Moda Bake Shop Christmas Stockings. Each of these little mini Honey Buns makes 3 little stockings, plus a half yard for the backings per box. The technique is Seminole piecing, which is not difficult at all to do, but is something that not a lot of people have done before. We have a limited number of these kits in the shop.
Somehow I didn’t get any pictures of the group working on their individual stockings, but here’s Pat in her “teaching” mode. She’s a great teacher!
Here’s Pat “threatening” me for taking her picture! Lordy, she scares me! Did you see on her blog where she actually declared “WAR” if I posted an unflattering photo of her??? So no unflattering photos…this time!I think I did get my name on the board for this one, though!
You can see that the entire room was buzzing with the sounds of laughter and conversation amid the whirr of sewing machines. A running tally is kept of the number of projects finished during the retreat and it seems like the total was at five or six when I left yesterday. This group knows how to have fun, but they can turn out the work, too!
Here’s Julie B. showing a fat quarter quilt she’s working on – all it needs is the three borders. I helped her pick out the fabrics for this one, and the green is a little unexpected with the red, white and blue. Doesn’t it look fantastic, though!
Here’s Marie M. with her Dancing Stars quilt on the design wall. I think she still has one more multi-color border to go, but it is looking wonderful! This was a Silver Thimble Quilt Club selection from April, which we kitted at Sweet Home. A couple of kits are still available.
Here’s Teresa W. showing her completed Ring in the New stitchery BOM. This was a BOM from Kathy Schmitz that we offered at Sweet Home last year, and Pat designed the setting exclusively for us. The stitchery is blackwork done on aged muslin. A few kits are still available for this one, also.
Teresa also won the day’s “Princess Prize” drawing, which was a much-coveted notions bag in red and brown. We’ll all be searching all over town to find one of these, I’m sure!
This is a shop sample that I took to share with the group (I actually intended to sew the binding on, but didn’t get to it!) The basket blocks are hand embroidered, set with a variety of scrappy 30′s prints. The quilt is STUNNING in person! We have a limited number of kits available in the shop.
A rousing game of Left Right Center resulted in lots of laughter and a pile of really ugly fat quarters, none of which, I can assure you, came from Sweet Home Quilt Co.!
Julie D. was the lucky winner – see that expression of delight as she looks through the awesome selection she won!!!
I had such a blast with this group of friends – it was just the therapy I needed! Pat goes to great lengths to make sure her retreaters have everything they need or could possibly want – the food, the fun and the learning are all in plentiful supply! I sure hope I get invited back next time…hint, hint!
If you have an opportunity to retreat with other quilters, take advantage of it! Even if you don’t know anyone, trust me, you’ll be fast friends before you know it and you’ll have the best time, I guarantee!
Play time is over, and I’ve got to get back to work. I’ve got lots of things brewing at the shop this week and it won’t happen if I don’t buckle down!
We enjoyed a visit last Friday from Marcie Patch of Patchalot Patterns and Karen Mowery, of Folk Art Children patterns. It seems that Marcie and Karen had been blogging friends for a while, but had just met face-to-face that very day and were off on their own “Excellent Adventure,” visiting a couple of local shops and getting to know one another better. We had a fun visit with LOTS of laughter and sharing of ideas. Both Karen and Marcie have posted great reviews on their blogs for Sweet Home. I love reading about my shop from others’ perspective (especially when it’s good!), and the images they captured during their visit spoke volumes about Sweet Home Quilt Co., not the usual “shop” pictures you expect to see. So fun to view it through someone else’s eyes!
I am glad Marcie and Karen enjoyed their visit with us, and since Marcie’s daughter lives in the area, hopefully she’ll be back for a visit soon and they’ll come back to see us again! I was already a regular reader of Karen’s blog, sewprimitivequilter, and now I’ll be a regular reader of Marcie’s blog, patchalotmore, too.
Sew, how many other bloggy friends are planning a visit to Sweet Home this summer? Please be sure to introduce yourself to us – we love meeting new friends!
P.S. Can anyone explain to me why my links only randomly appear in color? I changed the html code so the links would be blue, but only one appears that way. I’m using WordPress, BTW. Computers, gotta love ‘em!
I spent an enjoyable afternoon visiting with my friend Pat, who had her second (!) knee replacement surgery last Monday. I took dinner over and managed to catch her in between “meds” and we were able to visit for a while. She’s doing really well, all things considered. She was helping Suzanne (no blog!) make price tags for her antiques booth when I got there. It was fun catching up – I cannot tell you how many times I’ve picked up the phone this week to call Pat to tell her something or discuss something with her only to remember that she was incapacited! It will be interesting to see if she remembers any of our conversation this afternoon!
As always, Pat had wisdom to share so I’ll leave you with this little tidbit – did you know PEAS ARE BETTER THAN CORN?!?!?! Let’s see if Pat remembers this profound statement in a couple of weeks! It may become her new mantra!
Melisa (who also made a quick stop at the antiques mall on the way home and picked up some great goodies for our Shop Hop theme!)
I’ve been quilting for 20 years, but you’ll find very few quilts in my home that I’ve personally made. That’s because usually when I start a project it is with someone else in mind, so most of my quilts are given away.
I have a friend, Ray, whose hobby is wine making, and although I certainly am no wine connoisseur, he makes a White Zinfandel that I am crazy about! (Some would say a little too crazy!) The only problem is that he only makes about two batches a year because he believes it has to “age” for several months before it is ready for consumption. What’s that old saying “We shall serve no wine before it’s time?” I’m sure that’s what makes his wines so good, but it sure makes it difficult when you run out and have to wait a couple of months “until it’s time.” I would always fuss, but Ray never budged – his wines had to be properly aged! At any rate, late last summer Ray and his wife, Cynthia, showed up at the shop with a dozen bottles of my favorite White Zinfandel wine bottled exclusively for me!!! Oh my! I was in heaven! They had also written the sweetest poem about how it was made especially for a special friend. I was so touched I didn’t have the right words to convey my appreciation.
I made this quilt as a thank you to Ray and Cynthia and in celebration of our friendship (click the images to enlarge). The pattern is Just Can’t Cut It, which has larger blocks that showcase the fabrics (plus I knew I wouldn’t have time to do anything too complicated or with too many pieces if I wanted this quilt done any time soon.) I didn’t have any wine-related fabrics in the shop so I went online and found everything I needed here. Julie had the perfect wine bottle print, corks print, and wine-related words fabric which I was able to pair up with the other coordinates from my stock at the shop. The border fabric is a leafy vine print that looks just like grape vines which I actually had in my personal stash at home. I made the quilt during our Sew What If It’s Monday sessions at the shop, and it was quilted by my friend Elaine at Pooregirls Quilt Co. She used a very appropriate leafy vine panto that finished the quilt off perfectly!
The quilt was actually finished in November, but it took me over a month to put the binding on – now how sad is that? I know many people really enjoy the binding process, and I actually don’t mind hand stitching it down, but I despise making the binding and applying it by machine! When I found myself with an unexpected day off last week due to the furnace going out at the shop, I forced myself to put the binding on this quilt. I added the label Saturday and wa-la! It was done and ready to be given to Ray and Cynthia.
We had lunch with them and some other friends Sunday after church, and I gave them the quilt. Both were speechless, and I could tell they felt the same as I did when they gave me the wine. This is why I quilt – I love making something for someone, knowing that they will appreciate not only the effort but that it is truly a gift from the heart.