Category Archives: News You Can Use

Quilt Expressions announcements and the latest quilting industry news.

Our Surprise Revealed

Yesterday we had a huge celebration in the shop to announce our BIG SECRET! People were lined up in the freezing cold to be the first here for our party. Did you miss our big day? Can you guess what the big surprise is?

We won’t make you wait any longer! Our big news is….(drumroll, please!)….we were selected by Quilt Sampler magazine as one of the top ten shops in the United States! WOOO! We are incredibly excited and had so much fun celebrating with all our favorite people at the shop.

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The magazine will be released in May. If you pre-order the magazine from us, you will get entered to win a $100 gift certificate. We are making kits of the quilt being featured in the magazine. We are also taking pre-orders for the kit.

Here’s some photos from yesterday’s celebration.

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First in line!

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The parking lot was FULL!

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Cars lined up all the way to Fred Meyer!

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Making the big announcement.

Making the big announcement.

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The quilt that will be featured in the magazine.

The quilt that will be featured in the magazine.

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New Scrappy Ruler

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I’m in love…with a new tool! We picked up the Flip Flop Ruler at Fall Quilt Market and it’s perfect for beginners, quickly makes a quilt entirely out of scraps, and is ADDICTIVE. I’ve already incorporated making these blocks into my scrap-management system. Here’s the blocks I’ve made so far. What do you think? The ladies who created the ruler jokingly call this style the “stuff off mom’s sewing-room floor” quilt.  Keep your eyes peeled for an in-detail demo soon.

— Posted by Stacy

Welcome! A Quick Video Tour

We’ve got a brand-spanking-new video! Let Karen take you on a tour of our always-changing shop to see what we’re up to.

We’ve Got Furniture!

If you haven’t had a chance to stop by the shop in the last few months, you may have missed one of our biggest additions — furniture! We added several dozen unique, reclaimed furniture pieces as well as countless decor items like candles and candle holders, chandeliers, lanterns and more. In addition to making the store look extra cute and homey, these new pieces are exciting because they are all for sale! That’s right, we’re now selling furniture. Stop by the shop soon to take a look at what we’ve got. Pieces range in price and style, so there’s something here for every decor taste. We’re kicking off the introduction of new furniture right by putting everything on sale for a limited time. Just print off the coupon at the bottom of the page and bring it in for an extra 10% off one “home” item. Excludes all fabrics, books/patterns, notions or other sewing-related products. Let us know what you think of our new additions in a comment!

Butcher Table

Fish Padlocks

Cubby with Drawers

Cabinet with Glass Doors

Candlesticks

Black Bench

Rustic Clock

Shutter Cabinet

Small Chest

Large Chest

Rail Road Lantern

Storage Bench

Hutch with Glass Doors

Mercury Glass Hurricanes

Blue Bench

Buffet

Door Cubby

Black Lanterns

Shutter Chair

Candle Chandelier

Shutter Cabinet

Key Box

Chest

Yellow Door Shelves

Black Table Set

Blue Cabinet

Candle Set

Mirror Stand

Yellow Pillar

Green Cabinet

Antique Biscuit Tins

Metal Chandelier

Corsican Crib

Garden Bench with Stain-Glass

Metal Suitcases

What’s It Like at Market, Anyway?

We talk about it all the time – Quilt Market.  You might be wondering what is it and what all the buzz is about.  In the most basic of terms, Quilt Market is a retail trade show.  It’s where quilt shop owners go to find the latest products, trends and inspiration for quilting. We really get rejuvenated at market.  We find out what we have been doing right and what we can do better. In order to attend Quilt Market, you must have a retail business, or in my case, are affiliated with a shop. It happens twice a year; the fall show is always in Houston, TX, and the spring show locations change.  Karen and I just got back from fall market; take a look at what it was like this year.

Day One – Market always kicks off with an all-day event called School House.  School House is made up of mini classes that last about 30 minutes.  You hear about new books, patterns, techniques, and fabrics in a lecture setting lead by well-known designers, authors, and businesses. We learn from all of them.  Overall, School House is a bit like high school – Karen even got in trouble for talking, which I’m sure that happened a few times for her in her teens!

Day Two – The trade show opens and the fun begins!  We try to scope out the hundreds of vendors on the first day. If you’ve been to a quilt show with vendors, it looks very similar to that setup except on a huge scale.  This year I took notes on my new iPad about what vendors we wanted to revisit.  It’s kind of like buying a new pair of shoes – you don’t want to buy the first pair you like just in case you find something better at the next store you visit.  After the show closes at 6:00 p.m., the work begins. No, not at the bar! We headed back to our hotel and sorted through all our notes and photos and discussed what vendors we wanted to revisit and what to order.

Day Three – Mixed in with vendor revisits we had appointments with fabric reps.  The fabric we buy at market arrives anytime between one week and eight months later. Some of the fabric we picked out this time around is for Halloween and Christmas fabric for 2012. Wow!

Day Four – The last day of market usually closes early so the pressure is on to get our last few appointments wrapped up and do a final lap around to make sure we didn’t miss anything.  Usually we find things on the last day that we hadn’t noticed before and this year was no different.  We stopped to look at fabric from some new designers called “dear Stella.” Their booth was fresh and modern.  Check out the nautical prints in the top photo – it will be coming soon in our shop.

We also checked out Blend – a new collective of designers under Anna Griffin.  Babysaurus is a fun collection in both the pastel and primary colors that we ordered.

Since we got back to Boise, a lot of people have been asking me what the latest trends are that we found at market. I would say gray is still dominating the color field.  For little girls we saw lots of ruffles.  Dinosaurs and cars were also a popular favorite for boys.  Now that we’re home, the big question is where we going to put all that new fabric when it finally arrives! I know it’s only been a few days since we left Houston, but I’m already looking forward to next year’s market – I’m ready to go again.

— Posted by Della

Behind the Scenes: Welcome Video

A plan to change the home page of our website has been in the works since we
changed locations last October. Karen wanted a welcome video that showed off our beautiful new location and gave our web customers a chance to get to know us a little better. For those of you who have not had a chance to visit us yet, we like to think of each day as a party at the quilt shop and we tried to use this video as a way for you to join the fun.

Lucky for us all, Karen’s son, Mike, is a professional videographer who agreed to
shoot and edit the welcome video for us. After consuming what I’m sure was a copious amount of caffeine, our entire gang showed up at the shop bright and early one morning last week to get a taste of showbiz. Personally, I was a bit put-off when I showed up and didn’t have my very own trailer. And no makeup artist to make me beautiful!

Although my introduction to acting wasn’t quite as pampered as I was expecting, we did get a taste of some fun filmmaking terminology. Just like in the movies, Mike was yelling “quiet on the set” and “action!” before every take. We had a giant round reflective device that I was instructed on properly holding to give Karen a nice warm “glow.” We even got really advanced when Mike hopped on a skateboard and I pushed him through the shop. Apparently that’s called a “dolly,” although I have a feeling high-budget films have a more sophisticated system worked out.

After one or two practice runs through our script, we tried again with the cameras rolling. Karen did alright for not having any prior acting experience! We even stayed on schedule — everything wrapped before 10 a.m. when the shop opened. We did have one early-arrival customer who came into the shop with the camera rolling and our entire staff grinning and waving behind the cutting counter for the final shot of the video. It was like her own private welcoming committee! Luckily, she was a good sport and poked around the fabric quietly as we finished our last few takes.

In just a few short days, the whole video was edited and we launched our new home page, complete with our “take a tour” video. Take a look  and tell us what you think!

— Posted by Stacy

Moving Day

So, here we are. We’ve landed. The girls at Quilt Expressions have gone digital and there’s no turning back now.

Our fun little group of bloggers are ready to jump into action and will be bringing you new entries every week covering all-things quilting. Look forward to the best sewing secrets, giveaways for our dedicated followers, the latest projects from our fabulous team and an insiders’ peak to our latest fabric collections. You can also spy on what’s going on in the shop, including ideas from our “cookie cocktail” events and the brilliant quilts our friends and customers are working on.

Have you heard the news? Quilt Expressions has MOVED its location! After a few years in “cozy” quarters, we’ve reached our quilt shop heaven in a spacious 6,600 foot building with mile-high ceilings and skylights that makes the whole shop glow. We’ve barely missed a step in the transition and have all the long-arm machines buzzing along, customers scooping up armloads of newly discovered bolts while we’ve even managed to get several brand-new collections on the floor. Check out our online store to see the latest.

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Wonder what it looks like to move 5,000+ bolts of fabric? We took lots of photos of our able-bodied moving crew as they carried piles upon piles of bolts back and forth between the shop and our 26-foot truck.  Finishing the move in just under six hours, it was almost as easy as a wiggle of the nose a la Bewitched (although unpacking was another story…)

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Laying sheets and quilts on the floor, we started unloading our mountain of fabric in good spirits.

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And the pile got bigger...

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... and BIGGER ...

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Karen lays more quilts down to make room on the floor as the moving nears an end.

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The winner! JF carries the most bolts from the truck.

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Annnd we’re finished. Can you believe this is only HALF of the new store?

And now, for the fun part! What’s better than shop talk and witty online banter? Free stuff! Make a comment to this blog entry with your first name and email address and you will be entered to win six fat quarters from the new collection everyone is talking about — Miniatures by Windham Fabrics! Our winner will be chosen on November 1st, so don’t delay. Invite your friends to check us out and maybe they’ll share the winnings if our random number generator favors them over you.

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The complete Miniatures line.

— Posted by Stacy