Monday, July 23, 2012

How I Spent My Summer Vacation

How I spent my summer vacation…

I had this wild hair…I thought a quilting road trip was in order.  So I called my partners in crime (or in quilting) and said “we need a road trip!”  Well I didn’t have to twist their arms.  Friday we loaded up the car with our map, cameras, shopping lists, sturdy totes and of course our credit cards. We got in my car, cranked the AC and headed south to Iowa. 

Our first stop was Garner, IA at Country Threads.  One of my all time favorite quilt shops.  If you have never been there it is a MUST VISIT!  An old converted chicken coop is the main quilt shop.  Then there are two other out building; a traditional red barn with sale patterns and another building with loads of civil war repos.  We spent hours in the repro building.  Shopping can be sooo exhausting!  With our tote bags over flowing we said goodbye to the honking geese, the cats and a very special foster dog named Tully (I really wanted to bring her home).  If you can’t get to Country Threads you can subscribed to their newsletter called the Goat Gazette.  It is chalked full of interesting articles, fabric and kit offerings and the occasional yummy recipe.  What a great start to our day.
Inviting entrance to Country Thread, complete with barn quilt art

Ann, my partner in crime and a Country Threads employee Jan - such wonderful taste in  attire.  They may have been  separated at birth???

The Civil War fabric room

More Civil War fabric and kits

Just half an hour away from Country Threads is our next stop…The Quilted Forest in Forest City, IA.  This shop is quite different from Country Threads.  Bright and full of light this shop offers tons of kid fabrics, 1930 repros, a large selection of patterns and an entire section devoted to Halloween.  What a great place to pick for a contemporary quilt.  One of my partners in crime did very well at this shop.  She even used up a frequent buyer card and received a gift certificate to be used at next visit.  Oh, I forgot to tell you there is a delicious ice cream parlor in Forest City and on a hot day that was terrific!
A great collection of 1930s fabric

Black and white fabric galore

Heading north now and back over the border into Minnesota we took I-90 to Hayward, MN and The Calico Hutch.  It had been a long time since I was there.  The shop had changed a little since the last time I visited.  More fabric, more samples and just MORE of everything, it was total eye candy everywhere you looked.  I got into a little unexpected trouble in the ‘wool’ room.  I bought a nice kit for a Christmas project (and my buddies followed suit…monkey see, monkey do I always say).  Now I just wish I could buy some time for making the project. 
Class room at the Calico Hutch.  Wall to wall quilts and fabric eye candy.

My new project from the book I believe by Art To Heart.

We had a wonderful time together.  I hope we get a chance to do it again real soon!

Happy travels!

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