We Got Something They Don't....YOU!

 


Seeew...

Last week I shared a post about the importance of supporting your local brick and mortar quilt shops. This shouldn't be a controversial subject, but whenever I bring it up, it rattles a few feathers. To me...it's simply common sense. Shopping your brick and mortars combined with staying seeew-cial helps to create a local quilting community. Better put on them "No Excuses" Jeans because I'm feisty on this subject. If you can't shop a local brick and mortar, then make sure if you're ordering on-line that you are ordering from a website that has a brick and mortar you can visit! The phone is also an option. Remember that? Oh wait...it's in most of our hands!

In searching for a song this month, I was reminded of the "Mothership's" monthly "What's For Breakfast?" Club which will celebrate its 3rd year this October! With my recent obsession for Shania Twain's first new album in almost a decade, I felt "We Have Something They Don't" sums up the last year perfectly! If anyone stays strong and carries on...it's the M.T.H.S.P.!

Speaking of the M.T.H.S.P. here she is below sharing the two projects Sherri McConnell will be teaching here this weekend for A Quilting Life Weekend (Sep. 22 & 23).

Breakfast-Club-7 (1)

As I took pictures of the various women around the room, something else became clear. When it comes to the brick and mortar experience vs those on-line only gigs, we do "have something they don't" and that is...

YOU!

Your presence, your spirit, your enthusiasm, your creativity, your smiles and your stories...you can never get all of that from on-line.

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Pictured here is Bev. Bev was one of those who were thrilled with our move to Charbonneau because she lives around the corner. Part of the W.F.B.C. is "sharing" seeew Bev brought this beautiful dresden quilt called Muffet's Tuffet from American Jane.

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This was a kit we offered last year and it sold out so fast we didn't even have time to get our sample made. It was such a treat to see a customer bring in something from the Shoppe...that we didn't make! Great job Bev!

I should add that I am working with a new camera seeew if you don't see your picture here...it was blurry. I'll get better!

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This is Christine (no, not the one that works here) and I first remember Christine from our first session of Farm Girl Vintage. Every time she attends "What's For Breakfast?" she brings something bright and happy! This month she brought this adorable paper piecing project made from the Sew It By Number book by Kimberbell Designs.

BTW...Look at that ant fabric! Perfect theme for a project featuring watermelons! A total 10!

Breakfast-Club-Collage

I always forget that a blog post can only handle seeew many pictures before the post gets entirely too long. Seeew I created the collage above with some of the highlights from Saturday's event! As you can see from Rebecca  pictured up in the top left with her bear, you don't have to bring just quilts to "What's For Breakfast?" We celebrate all creativity and love to see what showcases your talents! We even had someone bring a violin that they made. Talk about skill set!

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BTW...when you win the fabulous prizes the "Mothership" gives out...it really does become a blur!!! LOL.

Best...Moment. Ever.


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Besides sharing your own projects and WINNING....there is one other aspect of this gathering that makes it oh-seeew-much fun! That other aspect is..the Mothership's Featured Project which is always (at least in my opinion) super cute! Just like the projects you bring, the featured project is not always something quilted, but it's always something to get the creative wheels spinning of any crafty enthusiast! 

What's-For-Breakfast-Club

In celebration of Autumn, the "Mothership"used this very cute collection for the featured project. We do sell the collection here in the Shoppe and on our website. I will of course share the featured project with you in my next post, but look at this bundle...is it not the cutest? 12 Fat Quarters for $39 plus shipping. It can be on its way to you this week!

Autumn-Bell-Woods

There is however somebody who has already seen the project....and that's this little dude.

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He's got his Squirrel Cam in place and only he knows what squirrel-y shenanigans happen in that room!

Did you attend this month's What's For Breakfast? Have you attended others? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

Alright, like I said...I'll be back to share the featured project in the next post! In the meantime, registration is now open for the October 14 What's For Breakfast? Club! This one is special because it will be the 3rd Anniversary of our monthly event seeew be sure to get signed up now. You can register by clicking here to our website or you can call us during Shoppe hours 10am-4pm Tuesday- Saturday at 503-694-8052!

 Don't it taste good to be together????

 Stay Seeew-cial ~ Brian

 Squirrel-Cam

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A Message To Fabric Manufacturers....Look What You Made Me Do

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I have to hand it to Taylor Swift. The girl knows how to get her message across. Nearly 300 million views in almost two weeks! What I love most about her, is she challenges the "tilted stage" straight up. Who knew I was such a "Swiftie?"  

I happened to notice recently that Quilt World has a rather "tilted stage" when it comes to supporting local quilt shops. It appears we now are competing directly with designers selling their own fabrics. While they have been doing this for some time now, it just has me questioning seeew much. Maybe even too much for one blog post. It was already bad enough when designers started selling the patterns that they hoped shops would buy...but to now have to compete against them to sell fabric...really????

Why are designers selling their fabrics and/or other items?

Do they not realize that shops will decide not to purchase their collections and/or patterns when they do this?

It's a bit of a vicious equation: Customer follows designer, buys regular price from designer, but expects shops to have designer's fabric or patterns for when they suddenly decide to visit the shop. If shop has discontinued designer in the seven months since customer has last been in...customer then posts negative review about styles or quantity of fabric, shop now carries.

Because that makes sense, right? Way to support your local businesses!

Furthermore, do the manufacturers not pay them enough to design? Nothing annoys a store more than seeing a designer pre-selling their fabric collections BEFORE a shop even sees the collection.

When I brought this up to one of the leading manufacturers I was told they are committed to supporting local brick and mortar quilt shops.

Oh yeah?

Perhaps they don't know how they've over-saturated the market through Social Media so much that by the time the collection comes out we hear, "Oh I ordered that from <insert name of designer>" -or- "I've seen that already." We are not the only shop that feels this way. It's an industry wide feeling and I think it's high time shops start demanding an explanation.

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If quilters want shops to visit so they can "touch and feel" the fabric, then they better be willing to support them. You can ask the many Californians who travel up this way every Summer and they all tell us that shops in California are vanishing. Granted some shop owners retire but many of them have to make the decision to close their doors because of the costs involved.

When I have talked about this previously someone always chimes in with.."It's cheaper on-line." Oh if I earned a dime for every time I've heard this fired back at me!

My question to them is..."What isn't cheaper on-line?"

You can practically find anything on the web for "cheap." By the time you pay shipping, you might as well have taken the time to shop your local quilt shop. The in-store quilting experience is not supposed to be "cheap."  It's not supposed to be the instant gratification experience that the web provides. There is the cost of space, the cost of the employees to help you (including taxes on top of payroll), the cost to run your transaction on a credit card, the cost of samples to be made, the cost of a teacher to teach you, the cost associated with continuing to bring you new product. I could go on and on. Shops do not receive discounts on the product they bring to you. The MSRP is the "Manufacturers Suggested Retail Price." That MSRP ensures that costs are covered to operate and that the price is most of all a fair price for the value you are receiving.

The person sitting behind their Etsy account at home, or any "on-line only" source isn't interested in creating a physical space for you to visit. Some might have a dream to do it one day and good for them (good luck too honey) - but that's not the majority. In fact I was on Instagram the other day and shared a beautiful wool kit that we have made for Autumn. This individual wrote, "It's so cute. I just ordered it." When I didn't see their name appear I said, "I actually don't see an order from you." She wrote, "I ordered it from someone else on Etsy."

Oh I see. I get it.

We are good enough to follow for info, but we are not good enough to order from?

I have heard from some that young people don't want anything to do with quilting. I personally know that is not true but I will say it is always nice to see more. In fact, over the summer it was refreshing to see young people coming in with their grandma's and moms to participate in the Row by Row Junior. It gives me hope!

The truth is, a better future for all of us begins with us. There is a true value to all products and services. When we devalue everything, what's left? I question my own friends who brag about how they ordered food from Amazon. LOL. Are people really that lazy they can't get up and go to the grocery store? I take every opportunity to let them know how they have just worked towards killing off starter jobs for their children, or their nieces and nephews. It's just one example out of many, but many entry level jobs  - those jobs where young people spend their summer learning job skills between school - are being snuffed out by the internet and Social Media. Are you comfortable knowing that the automation of thousands of jobs will be the future? Are you comfortable with the "discount culture" that has been created? Worse however....are you comfortable knowing that automation will close all of your favorite quilt shops? This is your wake up call.

Seeew...what do you think? If you're a shop owner, feel free to share your thoughts below! If you're a customer, what say you? Keep in mind if you want to post a comment, please have more to say than just "the fabric is cheaper on-line" because that honestly just isn't news in 2017.

Stay Seeew-cial because dialogue must always happen! ~ Brian

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Life's About To Get Good With New Fabric!

 

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Life is about to get good because not only am I going to share with you the new fabrics coming to the Shoppe....but guess who is making a comeback?!

Shania Twain!!!!

I stumbled across her new song the other night and I have purchased the first three songs available! I'm hooked! It's the perfect video to celebrate the end of Summer and the perfect song to move on from betrayal. If you haven't ever had that in your life, be thankful. Apparently it has taken her a decade to get over it...from what I've read. She's not calling me nightly or anything. 

Her husband was such a dog, wasn't he? Note to self: Never get involved with anyone named Mutt.

Be on the lookout for her two iconic looks from "Man I Feel Like A Woman" and "Any Man Of Mine."

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Anyhoo....life is truly about joy! Right? 

Do you know what else brings me joy?

Our Mod Pineapple Quilt Kit. This popular pattern by Sew Kind of Wonderful is simply enchanting.

Did you know the pineapple has long had a tradition of being the symbol for friendship and hospitality? A pineapple on display within social gatherings reassures the guest that no expense has been spared in creating an enjoyable time. Add the pineapple to a quilt and you've got an extra dose of enchantment! The color selection by the Mothership for our quilt is spot-on! The woman knows color and she takes pride in ensuring that everything we make here at the Shoppe has a fabulous outcome!

Mods-Pineapple-Quilt-Kit

 
I mentioned above that I would show you new fabrics coming to the Shoppe! Well...if life is about to get good...then it's going to get really good because the "Mothership" has ordered several collections that are due to arrive in the Shoppe between now and December! I can't show you them all in one post but here are some of our favorites!

As I have said for many years, the only way to ensure that there is always something new here in the Shoppe, is to support the Shoppe. If you don't live locally we have a website to shop from. When you shop from our website you ensure that the doors to our brick and mortar remain open for when you do decide to visit. Can't say that about an on-line only source now can ya???

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Obviously I can't show you everything that is scheduled to come into the Shoppe. It's just not possible in one blog post but we've also got new Corey Yoder and Fig Tree on the way as well! Just today I saw that Moda is already having designers show 2018 collections which we haven't even seen yet! Heck...we're waiting for the collections I've shown you just now to arrive.

Alright...hopefully that has tickled your creative fancy for a bit. I'll be back with more to show you soon seeew stay tuned and stay seeew-cial! ~ Brian

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Our New Mystery Club featuring Moda's Authentic Etc. by Sweetwater! Starts September 28

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There are two upcoming club-like programs you may want to consider getting signed up for as soon as possible. They are, as the headline suggests...our new Border Creek Station Mystery Club featuring Authentic Etc. and our new session of the very popular Farm Girl Vintage B.O.M. which I have covered in full detail here. Both clubs have an in-store and on-line option to participate. 

You may recall waaaay back in 2009 or 2010 the talented women behind Moda's Sweetwater released one of their first collections called, "Authentic." It was an absolute hit and sold out immediately. I can see why! The colors are always current and the designs are fresh! Eight years later they have revisited that iconic color palette and are bringing us their all-new Authentic Etc. Here's a peak at the fabrics....

Authentic-Fabrics

There are (as I shared above) two ways to participate: With Membership (in-store) or Without Membership (on-line).
I received an email the other day wanting to know what the quilt looks like seeew I must emphasize that a Mystery Quilt...IS A MYSTERY! I can tell you that we will be making the lap size and the "Mothership", Christine and I have all seen it. It's a fabulous quilt.

"With Membership" includes all eight monthly in-store meetings with clues, snacks (wine and cheese anyone?) and prize giveaways. The meeting dates are one Thursday a month from 6:30pm-7:30pm: September 28, October 26, November 16, January 25 2018, February 22 2018, March 29 2018, April 26 2018, & May 24 2018. * Please note there is not a meeting in December. The kit will be handed out at the first meeting with the first installment of the pattern. You will receive an installment of the pattern at each meeting thereafter seeew you want to make sure you attend! 

"Without Membership" is the on-line version of the program and is available for those who want to complete the program on their own. The first mailing will include the fabric kit with the the first pattern installment. The remaining pattern installments will be shipped once a month after the in-store meetings have taken place.

The "Mothership" (a.k.a. Jan for the newbies) is providing two kit colorways to select from, Black/Cream or Green/Cream (refer to the picture of the fabrics above).

Below are the links to the different options. Remember..."With Membership" is the in-store sign up and "Without Membership" is for those of you who want to do the program on-line.

Green Authentic Etc. Sweet 16 Mystery Club Kit with Membership

Black Authentic Etc. Sweet 16 Mystery Club Kit with Membership

Green Authentic Etc. Sweet 16 Mystery Club Kit without Membership

Black Authentic Etc. Sweet 16 Mystery Club Kit without Membership

Thanks for joining us today! Remember Thursdays the Shoppe is open 12pm-8pm for your after-work creative urges!

Stay Seeew-cial! ~ Brian

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Share A Creative Moment During Our 9th Annual Homespun & Holly Christmas Workshop! Registration Now Open!

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It's the announcement many wait for each year! Registration has opened for our 9th Annual Homespun & Holly Christmas Workshop!

But first...yes, the special song from my good friend and former Disney colleague, Brian Huff...will be back for some holiday entertaining! Did you see our Instagram post yesterday? If you haven't noticed, I'm kind of in love with Instagram. Quick little bits of info without having to create lengthy blogs. Especially when people are just "hunting" for product info. But that's a topic for another day...

This year we are excited to announce that we will have special guest designer, Kathy Cardiff of The Cottage at Cardiff Farms as the featured designer! Kathy is designing an exclusive Christmas-themed larger wool project specifically for this workshop! As always, since this project is in development, we protect the designer's creative process and will only reveal it on the magical day! If you love wool and if you love an enchanting Christmas design, this workshop is for you! Kathy doesn't release the designs she designs for us as patterns seeew the only way to receive is to attend! It's what we mean when we say....EXCLUSIVE.

During the workshop participants will learn Kathy's techniques for layering the applique while working with wool on textured backgrounds which always creates a sophisticated look. You can check out Kathy's featured project for last year's Wool N' Harvest Workshop by clicking here.

Our one day workshop will be held Friday, December 1 -or- Saturday, December 2 from 10am-6pm. You select the day you want to attend. The same project is taught both days.

The cost is $150 per person and includes a complete wool kit for Kathy's project, a catered holiday feast, and instruction by Kathy. Seats are limited this year so be sure to sign up as soon as you can!

And of course...even here in our new location, we look forward to bringing you the Christmas cheer we have brought for the last nine years! Here are a few of the highlights from some of the Homespun & Holly Workshops of "Christmas past" that I have captured on Instagram! As you can see, we INSIST on everyone having a good time! It is what the spirit of the season is all about!

To register you can call us at 503-694-8052 or you can click here for Friday, December 1 or click here for Saturday December 2!

Not to be outdone by Moda's lovely Brenda Riddle who captured some of  her own special moments last year!

That's it for today everyone! Be sure to get signed up for all of our workshops this fall starting with Sherri McConnell in September. Seats are limited in all workshops as they are filling up! 

Stay Seeew-cial and maybe we will see you at one of these creative moments in 2017! ~ Brian

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Farm Girl Vintage B.O.M Registration Is Now Open! Starts August 26, 2017 Seeew Get Registered Now!

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The next session of our very popular Farm Girl Vintage B.O.M. begins August 26, 2017. For all details click here and read it all! The "Mothership" (a.k.a. Jan for the newbies) knows color and puts together an incredible program! I won't get sidetracked in this post but I've included a few of the finished quilts from both Jayne and Elaine who participated in our last session! Just stunning!

Again...I've covered all details here, seeew read through it and come join us!

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Farm-Girl-Vintage-Quilt

I know I've been absent from the blog-o-sphere but trust me...I've just been busy and you'll be hearing from me again very soon! Oh trust me...I have a ton I'm going to say seeew watch out!:-)

Stay Seeew-cial ~ Brian

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