Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Beatles (Yea!) and Dave Morey's retirement

Oh Dave, say it ain't so! Just around the time we received the Beatles fabric we found out that Dave Morey is leaving KFOG. Oh no! But how can we be so selfish? Easy! Dave is always there in the morning to ease us into the day, often with Beatles music, and with the wonderful camaraderie he shares with Rene, Irish Greg, and Peter. When I (Cyndy) first moved to the East Bay from Massachusetts in 1997, I was grateful to find a radio station that played the music I love, including the Beatles. The first dance with my honey of 37 years, John, was to In My Life by the Beatles.
For those of you who may not be familiar with Dave, he has an incredibly deep, smooth voice that is so comforting. He's also known for his wonderful way of saying Yea, as if in parentheses, every time he mentions the Beatles.
So we had to make a quilt for Dave with the Beatles fabric. In three days the quilt was made, quilted with a huge variety of lyrics from Beatles songs. The last stitch was added to the quilt five seconds before we got out of the car to present the quilt to Dave.
Dave Morey and his friends from KFOG were in Walnut Creek a couple of weekends ago at Peets Coffee. Kim Fettig, John, and I got there at 9, and Dave started signing copies of Live from the Archives, Vol. 15, at 10. We were so glad we go there early--the line was almost out the door when we got there.
We had a great time talking to fellow Fogheads while we waited for Dave. Of course they are all upset, as are we, that Dave is leaving San Francisco and heading back to his native Michigan. But Dave, enjoy every second! As Bonnie Raitt says, "Life gets mighty precious when there's less of it to waste." We will miss you, and hope the quilt keeps you warm while you sit in front of the fire watching old movies. Consider it thousands of hugs.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Halloween Treats

Don't you just love Halloween? We do, especially when our customers come in their adorable children. Shown here are Taryn and Emma Bryant, who stopped in with mom for a visit today. We loved Emma's costume, and Taryn is already a fashionista with her fabulous shoes, gloves, and matching purse. Thanks for coming in, ladies! You brightened up our day.

Come on in and enjoy 25% off of all Halloween fabrics. Stock up for next year, or make Halloween placemats using the placemat pattern from Artichoke Collection. Fun and easy!

And Mark Lipinski, thanks for the call. We would love to see you, but MUCH sooner than 2010!

Have a bootiful Halloween!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Monday Drop In Crew Admires Myrtle's Quilt

Kathy and Jane with Northcott's Vic Dadika, and Marilyn Drew

Make New Friends, But Keep the Old

One is silver, and the other is gold. I can't tell you how many times my mom sang that to me while I was growing up. It's turned out to be great advice.

Here at The Quilter's Inn we meet so many new people (and please forgive us if we don't always remember your names--we're all "of that age"). It's what makes working at the store such a pleasure. (OK, being surrounded by bolts of beautiful fabrics helps, too.)

There are a couple of groups who meet on a regular basis at The Quilter's Inn, including the Monday Drop In with the most wonderful teaching duo: Margaret Linderman and Janis Stob. A long-time student, Myrtle, is standing next to the quilt she just finished for one of her grandddaughters. Great job, Myrtle!

In the past couple of weeks we've made some new friends, including June Bugbee, owner of Sew Many Treasures in Williston, VT. June's son lives in the area, and he and his wife were expecting to deliver at any second, so June was just a little excited. (June, you have to let us know if it was a boy or a girl.) We loved the time spent with June, who helped Cyndy finish designing a quilt she was a bit stuck on. A lot of "quilt design by committee" takes place here, and we love it. We decided it would be a good idea to adopt each other as sister stores. Sew Many Treasures new website is under construction, so keep an eye out for it. Welcome to the family, June, and a huge Hi to her fabulous colleagues: Sharon, Angelica, Nancy, Kieth, Donna, Pricilla, and Mary Jane.

Just a day or two later we enjoyed a visit from Vic Dadika, US sales manager for Northcott/Monarch fabrics based in Cyndy's home state of New Jersey. We really enjoyed the time spent looking at fabric samples with Vic and fellow sales rep Marilyn Drew. Turns out Northcott is the manufacturer of Mark Lipinski's fabrics, and we're big fans of Mark's. So, how do we get Mark to come visit us? Vic gave us a small clue. HELLO MARK, THERE ARE LIKE 90 FINE RESTAURANTS IN OUR IMMEDIATE AREA. Maybe that will get his attention. AND, we'll also give you some homemade jam. How does Grapefruit Marmalade sound? Plum?

Hey you Baby Boomer Rockers! Come and get it before it's gone! It's the Beatles (Yea!) fabric collection that includes a panel with different scenes from The Yellow Submarines. Too mcuh fun. We're imagining purses, collages, PJ bottoms, boxer shorts, and, of course, quilts. Hurry before it's gone.

Thanks to all our friends, old and new. Enjoy this gorgeous season!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Jennifer's Urn of Roses

Kathy August's First Grade Caterpillar Quilt

Marby and Casey's Fans quilt

These Are a Few of Our Favorite Things

Oh the creativity of quilters! One great thing about working at the Quilter's Inn is seeing an incredible variety of quilts, and quilters. We love when our customers bring in the projects made from the fabrics we sell them. Spontaneous show and tell makes our day, so please come in as soon as you finish something.

Everyone who works here is a quilters, and we recently had a chance to share some of our own projects. Many of you know and love Marby Bennett, who teaches many of our classes, including the raucous, wonderful crowd at her Tuesday night drop-in, as well as her Thursday Beginner's group. Marby showed us a beautiful quilt that was the first she and her daughter Casey made together. Casey is now one of the most prolific quilters we have the pleasure to know.

And none of us can figure out how the heck the amazing Kathy August, Jane's right-hand woman, accomplishes all that she does. Kathy is shown here displaying a First Grade quilt based on Eric Carle's The Hungry Caterpillar.

Alethea Ballard, teacher by day and wild quilter the rest of the time, decided to make her own rendition of the French Roses quilt by Heather French. Love the way she used the different sized roses to surround the Lady.

Many of you may own Jennifer Rounds' pattern Rose Wreath, and may even have taken a class with her. Jennifer's newest quilt is a stunning abundance of dimensional roses in a beautiful blue and white urn. The quilt will be on display at the Pacific International Quilt Festival, which takes place in Santa Clara next week. Check out www.quiltfest.com.

Aprons are hot right now, and Beth Klingle at the is having a blast making them for adults and kids. Here she is modeling one of our favorites. Check her website at www.fromgrammmywithlove.com.

NEW FABRIC FLASH: We received a beautiful new line called Gipsy Glitter from Art Gallery Fabrics, a manufacturer of some truly unique designs. Come see them, and pick up a free pattern while they last.

Tablecloths, tea towels, and layer cakes from Moda, oh my! Come and get em while they last.

One of the area's most beloved teachers/authors/quilters, Diana McClun, and her partner Laura Nownes are featured in the latest issue of Mark Lipinski's Quilter's Home. Love the sewing structure, Diana, and the fact that you included a kitchen so Laura can back cookies for your students!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Celebrities in the News

It was great visiting with local author and quilter Terri Thayer and her friends Ruth Carter and Maureen Lardie. Look for her quilt mysteries, Wild Goose Chase and Old Maid's Puzzle.

We've Got a Winner!

We wonder how many people were surprised by the weight of the ball, which was about 3.75 lbs. Shocked us when we put it on the scale at Lunardi's--thought it would come in much higher. Congratulations to Tina Kauffman of Alamo for her winning guesstimate! Here sister, Karen, wasn't as lucky, but we won't mention that at all.

To everyone who came in and dropped a guess in the box, had a piece of cake, and shopped during our 4th Anniversary event, a huge thank you! Hope you had as much fun as we did.

If you didn't make it in, there is still plenty of half-price bolts on hand. Think of all the backings you could stock up on!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Four Years Already!


To all of our fabulous customers who have walked through the the doors of The Quilter's Inn in the past four years, a HUGE thank you! We couldn't have done it without you. Plus how much fun would it be if we were just hoarding all of this fabric, and you didn't come see us? We have the very best customers. Neenar.

And so we say, Let them eat cake! Starting tomorrow morning, please stop by and enjoy a piece of cake and a chat. AND a discount on your entire purchase. Our in-house guru, the wonderful Margaret Linderman (or Linderperson for a more neutral last name), came up with the idea of saving all our bolt end strips and rolling them into a ball. Well, the idea snowballed (pardon us, we just can't help ourselves), and we have a rather large Bolt-End Ball.

ARE YOU FEELING LUCKY? If you have been in lately and guessed The Ball's weight, good luck. We will be picking a winner and the prize is a $100 gift certificate. Woo hoo! So stay tuned for a photo of the final weigh-in (remember those technical difficulties we mentioned?). We think you'll be surprised. Kind of like, what's lighter than a watermelon but heavier than a hummingbird? Huh? The BIG BOLT-END BALL!

AND it gets better. You're all invited to join the Stripper Club. Everyone who walks in will be handed a strip from the ball with a percentage marked on it. That will be the discount for your entire purchase, and it will be more than the regular guild discount. :) So come on in and get happy. What makes you happier than fabric? OK, so after your cake you can go get ice cream to make it a perfect day.

Either before or after your stop here, make sure you take a drive down to Alden Lane Nursery for Quilting in the Garden. If you've never been, it is a great two-day event organized by the always wonderful Alex Anderson, whose special guests this year include Joen Wolfrom and Melinda Bula, and fellow teracher Cindy Needham. Check it out at www.aldenlane.com/stitch.html.

NEW FABRIC FLASH: Beautiful new collection from Westminster called Daisy Chain from Amy Butler; Moda Collection for a Cause by Howard Marcus, and Charisma Layer Cakes and Jelly Rolls that are just all gorgeous.

So y'all stop by to see us, hear? And by the way, welcome back to our blog. We apologize for the huge gap in time.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Field Trip

Jane and I have been having too much fun to blog. So sorry. We just got back from a week at Empty Spools Seminars at Asilomar Conference Center. We ended up in class together with rockin' Rosemary Eichorn, collage artist, teacher, and lecturer extraordinaire. We learned a ton.

If you've never been, we highly recommend it. If you start putting aside about $50 every two weeks you can go next year, and it is totally worth it. Just think--no shopping, menu planning, cleaning, cooking for vie whole days. The beach is right across the street. And you are in the company of quilters and master teachers. It is almost too much fun.

For five glorious days we showed up for class at 9 a.m. and stayed until at least 4 p.m. Rosemary is a generous teacher, and introduced us to a huge variety of techniques to use on our unique quilts. We played with Angelina and Crystalline fibers, painted Tyvek and used heat to make it bubble and shrink, and foiled to our heart's content. Shiva Paintstiks, fabric paints, fusible film, you name it, we tried it. We bravely went where we had not been before, and had a blast in class. And while we worked Rosemary often read snippets from some of her favorite books about creativity.

I have to admit to being a bit cross-eyed today at work. Last night I woke up at 2 a.m. (it's a funny time of life, if you know what I mean), and started reading Writing Down the Bones. It's a book Natalie wrote about the process of writing, and I couldn't put it down. I read til 4:30 a.m., then woke up and couldn't wait to either write or quilt. I worked a bit more on the quilt I started in Rosemary's class. It's a "vision quilt" that will help me through the process of writing my first novel. Yes, it's about quilters. Among the photos is a shot of a cottage where my main characters meet for a romantic weekend. Stay tuned.

Jane finished her table runner, and it is gorgeous. Photo to come. Stop in to see it, OK? In the meantime, here are some scenes from the past week. Come see us and we'll tell you more.

Our UPS guy, Shane, has been busy bringing us boxes. Some of the newest attractions include Eric Carle's The Hungry, Hungry Caterpillar from Andover; new designs by Dena Fishbein; Budda Party by Free Spirit; Anna Griffin's Sierra; and we restocked on lots of our favorite Kaffe Fasset's. Stop by and we'll also tell you more about Asilomar.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Fabric Musings

Hello all you wonderful quilters!

The fabric seems to be coming in faster than a a home run king sliding onto home plate. Yes, the start of baseball season is quickly approaching, and many people we know and love are knee-deep in fantasy baseball league drafts. If you have no idea to what we are referring, that's a good thing. All I know is that there is a feeling of frenzied anticipation amongst the males in my house. And I am not going to reveal who our favorite team is; you might track us all down and do a drive-by egging. All I know is that I can't wait to go to a game and eat! Hot dogs and peanuts and cotton candy, oh my!

Kudos to you if you are right there with him on the couch cheering on your favorite team. But if you want to escape the drone of the TV you know The Quilter's Inn is the perfect place to get away. Bring your machine and stay a spell.

On to some of the new fabrics--and patterns! Under the heading Just Too Cute is Moda's Backyard Safari collection. Orange, and of course lime green, are the new hot colors, and combined with bugs and more bugs this line is a sure to be a hit. Spring pillowcases!

How much do we love Jelly Rolls? We have a new debut--Wee Play--from one of our local favorite quilters, Sandy Klop. There are Jelly Rolls and charm square packs.

When the Za Za rolls from Moda came in we knew they would go fast. Think dusty purples, olive greens, butterscotch/caramel, and rusty reds. Nice allover large floral with cream accents, medium scale paisleys, dots, and a geometric print. Very fun.

Other new arrivals include patterns from local designer Lori Lott's Uptown Girl Quilts company. We have Bursting Buds, Thymes Square, and Sunday Picnic. Lori was kind enough to leave a few of her quilts here; stop in and see them soon.

And, for as long as they last (the ink is barely dry before they're gone) there is a small pile of the newest Quilter's Home magazine right up front. And there was a great surprise! Right there on page 77, just three pages after a recipe for Mark's Grandma's Potato Gnocchi (YUM!, one of my favorite things), is a review of my (Cyndy's) newest book written with Lynn Koolish, Innovative Fabric Imagery for Quilts. Thanks Mark! And he doesn't even know yet that he's a pin-up boy here in the store. Come in and find him (excluding the obvious one shown above) for a 10% discount on one item.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Glorius Spring

Has the weather been fantastic or what? Every year I forget how much sooner spring arrive here on the West coast. We moved here from Massachusetts ten years ago, and on April Fools Day that year it snowed 36"! So I fully appreciate the fact that the birds are singing, there are buds on many trees, and the daffodils are opening.

Today my friend Sheryl and I went for a walk up behind Westminster House off Hemme Ave in Alamo. There is a little parking area; check it out. If you have a dog, you can let him off leash. Today Ruby, Sheryl's dog, looked like she was just having a ball. The brook is gurgling again after having been "turned off", and there are buds everywhere. It was just what I personally needed to renew my spirits after that long rainy season.

Sheryl let me borrow her camera. I took a lot of shots, but these are my favorites.

I'm not so great at what I used to refer to as the "A" word, but which I now think is pretty wonderful. Our fabulous applique artists and friends Verna Mosquera and Laura Fraga are so inspiring. Laura has given me many tips, and I am getting bolder as a result. The branch of white and yellow flowers shown here may just have to be a quilt.

Stop in and see us soon. New fabric arrives just about every day. In the meantime, try a walk on the Iron Horse Trail. It's just too beautiful to be inside.

Most of all, have fun!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Road to California

We realize it's been a few weeks since Road to California took place down south in Ontario, but figured you might be interested in seeing some photos. If you've never been, it is well worth the trip. What road trip that is quilt-centered isn't worth it? A change of scene does a body good.

It was huge, like Pacific International huge. There were almost as many vendors as there were quilts, and it was packed. Your intrepid reporters stayed from about 11 a.m. til it closed at 6 p.m. and had a blast. Funny how I ended up with a cast on my left wrist after the show. It would have come in so handy while fighting our way through the crowds.

You'll see from the photos that I was attracted to bright quilts. Next year I'll be more careful about taking photos of a greater variety of quilts.

A huge round of applause for Linda Schmidt of Dublin, whose waterfall quilt won a third place ribbon. Her work is exquisite in it's detail and use of materials. Congratulations Linda!

Uh oh, time to go. So I'll let these photos tell the rest of the story.

Until next time, as always thanks for your support.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Love (of fabric) is in the air!

My how time flies. How can it possibly be February? No matter, because there is a lot to look forward to this month. The fabrics that we ordered at fall Quilt Market are beginning to roll in, with lots more to come. Coming to your favorite quilt store are organic cottons, and some really cute fabric based on the story The Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle.

Check out a beautiful new collection from Benartex called City Girl. Think contemporary, chic big flowers with peach, rose, green, blue-green, and brown mixed in. These would work well in quilts that feature some larger pieces. Come in and we can brainstorm with you.

As you walk in the door look to your left at our Valentine's Corner. Make some pillowcases, or try one of our kits. We also have some adorable retro tea towels from Moda--Better Than Sliced Bread, as the tag says. Moda also offers a Charm Square pack designed by Deb Strain called "All You Need Is Love"--whip up a Borsa bag with these. Don't know what a Borsa bag is? Come find out. It's an easy purse you'll want to make many times over.

Love batiks? At least ten new bolts just walked in the door (and are they tired--all the way from Bali); these include a couple of really great reds (one with cream polka dots), and a nice light blue for sky if you are into landscape quilts.

In the "Why Didn't I think of That?" category is a cool new tool called the Side Winder. Wind bobbins without having to use your machine. And it's portable! I want one, don't you?

And before you leave don't forget to check out our Odds and Ends corner where you'll find deeply discounted patterns, books, kits, quilts, etc.

Did you see the truly wonderful article about Jane and the Quilter's Inn in the Contra Costa Times Danville section this week? Many thanks to writer Elaine Schmitz and photographer Jim Stevens.

Cyndy Rymer, who works here on Fridays and is often the author of this blog, has a new website. Check her out at cyndyrymer.com.

Oops, gotta go, Kim needs the computer. Hopefully it won't be so long til we chat again.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Brand New Year

Thought you caught us napping, did you? C'mon now, you know us all better than that! It's just all those fabulous holidays, plus reorganizing the shop, a new puppy, and before we knew it it was January 15th! How did that happen? I'm sure you can all relate... right?

So there are a couple of really great things to blog about. Drum roll, please! If you don't already know, The Quilter's Inn was chosen by Better Homes and Gardens to be one of the top ten quilt stores for the Spring Quilt Sampler! Whoooo hooo!!!

And now you have to be very impressed with how long we were able to keep this a secret! We had a visit in October from Nancy and Elizabeth and two photographers (sorry guys, can't remember your names) from Better Homes and Gardens. They spent most of an entire day with us, and were absolutely delightful. So stay tuned for the release in May. You can pre-order your copy now by calling or emailing us. How fun is that?

Then right around Christmas Jane went online to a site for long-haired dachsunds, and fell instantly in love. And she wasn't the only one, but some of us already have a dog, or cats, or...Anyway, it wasn't long before Dash arrived. He is just adorable, as his photos will show. He isn't exactly a store dog, but he does make frequent visits. One day you might be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of him. He gives great kisses!

So we can't do a blog without mentioning fabric. So many new deliveries! Our UPS guy, Shane, never complains about all of the boxes he has been bringing us, and always greets us with a smile. We chuckle over the fact that he always wears shorts, even in the last huge rainfall. He's extremely good natured.

So the newest beauties include lots of Kaffes, Valori Wells' Sole Flannel bright flannels (think quilt backs, pajama bottoms, nightgowns), and the Laurel line from Moda. Just gorgeous!

Bonnie Roach was just here and bought pieces of the new Party line from Makower UK. She's planning to make Diana and Laura's Party Time Table Runner (From Me to You patterns) to use whenever her grandchildren visit for their birthdays.

One last thing, and then we'll save some info for the next blog. And hopefully it won't be so long til the next one. Stay tuned, and check out our newsletter and classes on our website.

Cheers, and thanks for your support during the holidays, and always. We appreciate every one of you--yes, you know who you are.

From Me To You: Diamond Jubilee II

From Me To You:  Diamond Jubilee II
Cheryl - Kaffe Fasset Fabric