Sunday, January 30, 2011

Our Saturday Girls!!

Keepsake Cottage is like many small businesses, the employees become family and the customers become friends.  It is one of the things I love most about the shop. 

Saturday was one of those days when it felt like we were all family.  There is a group of ladies who come for a little class, show and tell and friendship two Saturday's a month.  We just call them the Saturday Girls. We love it when they are there.  It's like our fun cousins coming over to play on Saturday morning.

One of the Saturday Girls has been dealing with cancer. So what does a family of quilters do, why the make a quilt of course!

Colleen was selected to say a few words, and present the quilt to Janet. 

 As you can imagine, she was speechless.

 We all went outside to take a few photos of the quilt and the group.

 Standing:  Joyce (the ringleader, teacher), Julie (me)  Colleen, Sue, Brenda, June and Carol.  Janet and Jane are in the front.  Many of these ladies met in a class 5 years ago.  For a couple of years they came once a month, but they have been coming twice a month for about 3 years now.

  Just as we were starting to take pictures these 3 great gals came through the gate.  Two of them stood on the bench and held the quilt and one of them was the official photographer!!  Thank you Sara, Annalee and Christine for helping us out!!

I have the best customers in the world!!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


What's not to love about a sock monkey?  They bring back fond memories for many 'baby boomers'.
Besides, you just have to smile when you see one.  I found this big fellow in the Moda offices a few years ago.  My Buddie, Bobbi, from Sisters Quilt Shop in Chehalis took this picture of us. 

 This guy is nice and relaxed.  His tail seems short to me.  My Grandmother made monkeys for all of the Grandchildren, and my brother enjoyed swinging them over his head, by the tail. So, all of our tails were a little stretched out.  I think he wanted to be a cowboy, instead of a zoo keeper!

 Just look at this line up!  Each one with their own personality!  Just like people.  I have a hard time passing them up when I am in an antique store.  They look a little lonely when there is just one.  But, put them together on a bench, or coming out of a child's dresser drawers, and there is nothing but Monkey Business going on!

If you've been in the shop, you know that I use them as props in the Kid's Room.  A few have snuck into my office.  This year for Christmas, my son, Cameron gave me a sock monkey hat.  I have to admit when it was 16 degrees, I didn't mind dressing like a monkey.

I made them for my boys when they were young.  I was trendy, and made them with blue socks, instead of brown.  We have sold the socks in the shop for years, so I know someone is out there making them.

Did you know there are other sock animals?  I have an elephant, a unicorn and a bear. 

This book just came into the shop.  There are dozens of different ideas for making sock friends.  They are precious!  What a fun winter project.  Surprise someone for Valentines day with a little 'sock love'.  Be sure and show us before you give it away!

Thursday, January 13, 2011


You may have read about the rising cost of cotton, this fall.

It was big news when I was in Houston in October.  All of the vendors were talking about it.

We are all about to feel it.

I thought I would take a little time to try and explain what I understand, about the increases.

There is a real cotton shortage.  Both China and Pakistan had major flooding in 2010.  There were droughts in India.  Those things were unexpected.  The United States and Russia both under planted their cotton crops.

 So, that means that prices will be going up in 2011.  In some cases they have already started.  Some of the fabric vendors raised their prices each day at market.  It was a little like the stock market floor.  Heads of companies were on the phones, trying to lock in prices.  Others felt like they had enough greige goods purchased that they could go at least another season without increasing.

It won't just be fabric.  Anything made of cotton will be going up, we are already seeing increases in thread and in cotton batting. 

Clothing will be increasing also.  As well as bedding, cotton handbags and canvas shoes.

I have been talking with shop owners around the country, we hope this will be unlike other increases, and when the crops are better, the prices will come down. 

I love fabric as much as all of you do, so my plan is to continue buying.  I hope you will feel the same!

Maybe this will be a stash buster year, but we all know that scrap quilts always need a little something extra.  At least mine do!  No matter how hard I try to sew completely from my sewing room, I always need the 'right' green, or an inner border.  Sewing and fabric sooth my soul, so yes, there will be new fabric in 2011! J

Monday, January 10, 2011


 I loved reading Roald Dahl books to my boys when they were young.  Charlie and the Chocolate Factory was one of my favorites.  I remember the excitement Charlie Bucket felt when he found the Golden Ticket, don't you? 

Gene Wilder was an amazing Mr. Willy Wonka in the 1st movie.  My boys watched that movie over and over.

 I must admit I have not seen the Johnny Depp version.  I am not sure why, I know I would love it as well. 

Wouldn't it be great to win a Golden Ticket.  What if the Golden Ticket wasn't to win a trip to the Chocolate factory.  What if the ticket was to win a trip to a fabric company.  What if you had the winning ticket was for all expenses paid, for 2 people to go to MODA!! 

Here is your chance!
Our boxes of Moda Candy Bars just arrived.

Each box contains 4 fabric collections.  2 1/2" x 5" Candy Bars.  They are $26 each.
We were only allowed to order them at Quilt Market.
If your box contains a Golden Ticket, you will win a gift bag full of Moda 'sweets' ($150 value)
Each Golden Ticket holder will be entered in a chance to win the Grand Prize

A tour of Moda Fabrics

(3 days, 2 nights for 2, to Dallas, TX, November 2011. Transportation and accommodations for the winner and a guest)

I would love for the winner to come from Keepsake Cottage!!  Wouldn't you?  J

Wednesday, January 5, 2011


The latest issue of Country Pleasures was in the mail box today, and what a treat it was for me!!

During 2010 I designed a Block of the Month quilt for this charming magazine. Today was the big reveal.

  The blocks each have 'farm' inspired names.  Country Farm, Hens and Chicks, Country Bud.  You get the picture. The 3 appliqued blocks  represent Country Village.  The barn is very reminiscent of our shop, the Giant chicken, bunnies and scarecrows.  The name of the quilt is Life on the Farm. 

It was a fun project to work on, and to see it on the cover of the Magazine, makes my heart skip a beat!

It is beautifully quilted, by a very talented friend, Pam.  Go check out her blog, and don't miss the slide show she posted on New Years Eve!  You will be inspired to make many of the quilts she has quilted and photographed!

I want to wish each of you a wonderful start to 2011.  I hope you have lots of fun projects on your list, I know I do.  Some to finish up, and lots to start!  I look forward to seeing you and your projects in the months to come.  And, if you are not a local follower, send me pictures of your projects!  I love show and tell! J