Friday, May 27, 2011

If the Hat Fits....

  Wear it!
Come into Three Crafty Quilters and pick up your own kit to create this wonderful Halloween decoration.  [The wording on the hat says 'ghoul friends are all fright'].   Also new and available are Halloween fabrics, table runner kits, ornaments and wall hangings.  Did I mention Christmas is available too?  Perhaps working on the fall and winter holiday projects and gifts will help keep you cool in the Florida heat?!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Salt Lake City Part 2 - Spring Quilt Market!!

[please note:  I forgot my real camera when I left for Salt Lake City so all photos have been taken with my camera phone.  Sorry for the poor quality.  I did remember the camera charger.  ]

Quilt market was awesome!!  The more I attend, the more organized and connected I feel, which means the more productive I am when buying and sourcing for the shops.  This year was no exception.  I arrived in downtown Salt Lake City the evening before the opening of Quilt Market.  Fresh from a training at Handi Quilter and some new quilting friends, Thursday night kicks off with Sample Spree.  Not having a burning desire to buy a lot that I didn't need, I chose to go after the door s opened and thus after the crowds.  I was able to pick up some Laurel Burch holiday fabric for Three Crafty Ladies to get a head start on s shop sample.  I also found some nice patterns and laser-cut applique kits.
Friday morning started early with appointments at some of my favorite fabric companies.  Timeless Treasures always has great novelty fabrics and batiks.  They have some beautiful free patterns coming out (see above and below) and is introducing 5"x5" squares packs (charm packs).  Can you imagine all of the wonderful things you can create with batik charms?!

Hoffman is another company that I can always count on for top notch fabrics.  (Having the Hoffman brothers in the booth conversing with the buyers is always a nice touch.  Marty Hoffman was a wealth of information, good stories, and a very friendly guy!)  I left the booth excited, having purchased some adorable fabric for both shops (cats at the beach for Sanibel).  Hoffman is coming out with their first Block of the Month - and it is in Jewel tone batiks.  It's stunning and I think it will be a terrific program for the store!

The afternoon progressed with meetings at Northcott, Clothworks and a few others.  Northcott has the best quality solids.  I look forward to the time when I can have a larger selection.
Clothworks always has some different collections.  Laurel Burch was ordered for the Sanibel shop.  I chose Sapphire by Skipping Stones Studios for Three Crafty Quilters.  It is a nice selection of blue-indigo.  (Alexander Henry was showing a lot of indigo/denim colors, too)

I saw a lot of florals at the show.  Collections having large flowers, medium prints and small prints ready to go were prevalent.  On quilts I saw a lot of pieced quilts with applique along with it.  (add in a embroidery - saw a lot of that, too.)

We had a chance to see the Wild Palms line from Wilmington Prints up close.  When I ordered it before Houston it was only on paper!
I enjoyed the last few hours meeting pattern designers and authors (Becky Goldmith from Piece 'o Cake is always a pleasure to speak with.  She has a new book in the works and some new fabric coming out with Robert Kaufman.  Everything she does is so cheerful. ) Ordered a few bolts of Hello Kitty fabric from Kokka of Japan (I could not resist!)  and found some great patterns and buttons for embellishing.

Saturday morning had another round of appointments.  First stop was at Westminster Fibers and Tula Pink.  I had seen a preview of Tula's new fabric line, Prince Charming, through Twitter and couldn't wait to see it in person.  It did not disappoint!  It is bright and cheery, sophisticated and whimsical.
The colorways in the line (there are 4) are so special!  Greens and blues, coral and chartreuse.  The 'Kiss Kiss' pattern (above top left) is a wonderful, simple one (and the little subtle frog prince was fussy cut in the center of the X-kisses.   Tula herself was such a sweet and friendly gal!  It's so nice to put a face and conversation to the fabrics we all use and love.
Look for Tula Pink's Prince Charming fabrics and patterns at Three Crafty Quilters soon!!!

In addition to Tula Pink was excited to see that Kaffe Fassett will be offering jelly rolls!  For the many gorgeous quilts that you can make using strips (such as the log cabin that is on display in our shop and came from his Quilt Romance book.)  A great addition to our Kaffe section, don't you agree (they will be in yellows, reds/pinks, greens, blues!)

Country Fair was the theme for Moda's booth, who always does a great job marketing and merchandising their brand.  One of my favorite Moda designers, Kate Spain, didn't fail to introduce a colorful new line (this time including some purples, which we really need!)   We added some new templates (scallops!), Kanzashi flower makers (similar to yo-yo makers, but it whips up precious little flowers!) and quilt related gift items.  You can now pick up wrapping paper at Three Crafty Quilters to finish those gifts for your friends and family!  Or cover your storage boxes in your studio!

Ellen Medlock, one of my favorite people at the show, not to mention one of my favorite bag designers, had a beautiful booth and a new interchangeable kit in a larger size.  I love large bags, and Ellen's interchangeable 4 is a perfect size!    Looking forward to lots of new things coming from her soon!

Many new patterns and kits are on their way.  Little Halloween and Christmas applique wall hanging kits have already arrived (that was quick!) with more on the way.   Quilt patterns to coordinate with all of the beautiful new fabrics will arrive shortly as well.  I always have a great time at quilt market and return to Florida with my head swimming with ideas and inspiration.  I have a stack of information to peruse, still mulling over the myriad of wonderful new products and fabrics being offered.

So, what do you think of the new fabrics and patterns coming?  Did I miss anything?  If you could see something new in my shop, what would it be?

Friday, May 20, 2011

Salt Lake City Part 1 - Handi Quilter!!

Last week was a quilters' dream week (at least for me), as I traveled to Salt Lake City, Utah for two different quilt-related events.

First stop - Handi Quilter!  I have chosen to be a representative for what I believe is the best long arm system available on the market.  After spending a few days at the Handi Quilter headquarters just north of the downtown area, I confirmed my beliefs that this company and their products are first class!
I worked with and met everyone from the support staff on the manufacturing (these are made in the USA!!) to the CEO and everyone in between.  What a kind, welcoming, knowledgeable staff!!  We spent a few days learning everything from threads and tension (more about the threads soon.  Handi Quilter has purchased Golden Threads and they are super products!) to uploading patterns into the Pro Stitcher.  The Sweet 16, Avante, Fusion and Pro Stitcher were all on hand to learn on.  Wow!
We use the groovy boards, pantographs, and Pro Stitcher patterns to create beautiful quilting.  (the cupcakes above right were to train us on how to manipulate patterns.)
We had a fun bunch of quilters (and techs) from all over the country.  Such an exciting week, I must say!
Don't I look like I am having fun?  I can't wait to set up the Avante that is sitting ready to be assembled at the shop!!  Soon you can come and play, too!  It's simple to use, you'll see!  You can be quilting your own quilts in no time!  [stay tuned to find out when the HandiQuilter will be ready!]

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Trick or Treat!

While the thermometers are regularly starting to hover close to 90 degrees here, there is but one thing we can't help but think about...
Leave it to Moda and popular fabric designer Deb Strain to come up with the perfect Halloween fabric!  We have a double panel that is yummy to look at.  Moda has a free pattern for a great table runner, and we think the panels together would make an awesome trick or treat bag!!  
Great colors and patterns to coordinate with this...

If you have a sweet tooth for fabric, stop by Three Crafty Quilters and check out Trick or Treat!  
(remember, fabric is full of fiber with no calories!!)

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

A Whole New Yellow Brick Road!

Shirley created this most gorgeous quilt for her daughter (who hopefully will not read this blog within the next two days).  Each fabric has a special meaning or thought for her, and it is wonderful.  Would you believe this is the Yellow Brick Road pattern?