Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Alive and Kicking... and having fun!

We got a call at the shop today from a woman that heard that I had been in a terrible accident and that the shop would most likely be closing. I am happy to report that isn't true. I am happy, healthy (to the best of my knowledge, knock on wood) and have no plans to close the shop anytime soon.

Funny how rumors get started. It always seems like it is the bad ones that stick. My usual response when someone tells me something like that is to laugh and ask them if they have heard the one about my having slept with Mel Gibson. Unfortunately that worked better when Mel was the "Sexiest Man Alive". After his outbursts of late I have decide to replace him. I have tossed around the idea of starting a "thing" with Harrison Ford, but after some thought, I decided that I have always harbored a small crush on Richard Gere. My husband was in Naval Flight Officer Training when we got married and I have always had a soft spot for the movie "Officer and a Gentleman". I'm going to have to see if Richard is available for my rumor mill. I love that white uniform......

While we are on the subject of rumors, you might not realize that I went to high school with Taylor Lautner. Ok, that is a bit of a stretch, but follow me here. I went to Hampton High School. Taylor Lautner is currently working on a new movie (where he does not play a vampire) that is filming right here in town and in the movie he attends Hampton High School - the very same one I attended. They aren't just using the building in the film, the producers decided to actually call it Hampton High and keep the mascot the same - the Talbot. Anyone else have a Talbot as a mascot at their high school? ..... I didn't think so. Hampton has the distinction of having the only Talbot mascot in the U.S. ... or possibly anywhere. If you are wondering, a Talbot is not only an upscale woman's clothing store, it is also an extinct, snow white hunting dog (although our mascot was always grey). So, on some obscure level, I went to high school with a vampire. Toss that one into the rumor mill and see if it sticks! Check it out here
One thing that is not a rumor is that I have a pretty fantastic hometown. Allison Park is our zip code, but here in Pennsylvania we have a government of Townships, ours is Hampton. Another strange fact is that Pennsylvania is technically not a state, we are a Commonwealth. Your American History teacher lied to you about there being 50 states, but that isn't the point. I live in a township with different boundaries than our post office. Hampton is a very small community measuring just 4 miles by 4 miles, but we pack in as much greatness as we can. Now the rest of the world, or at least Family Circle Magazine, has taken notice. We were rated the #2 best place to raise a family! We are pretty thrilled with that distinction and I am especially proud because my husband is an elected official that helps make this place so wonderful. Check it out:

I am pretty sure that Family Circle got this right. I was raised here, my kids spent all or at least part of their childhood here and after living 11 different places my husband and I moved our family back here to open the store - The Quilt Company -the one that isn't closing.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

still busy, busy, busy...

My BFF Bernie told me to get off the stick and update this blog because she was tired of reading about the Shipshewana Quilt Show. I've been busy! Bernie should know that, I spent the 4th of July weekend in Orlando attending her daughters wedding.

July is flying by and I am doing my best to savor every moment of it. Those of us that were socked with 24 inches of snow in 24 hours last winter want to soak up as much July as possible. We want to wallow in the sunshine, feel the heat on our bare skin and relish the feeling of only wearing one layer of clothing. It is time to show off parts of our pasty white bodies as proud survivors of Jan/Feb 2010!

In an effort to enjoy every moment summer has to offer, we have been checking out local art festivals, attending the summer theater series and eating out as much as possible. Things have been really busy at the shop with Monday night Happy Hour and our regular schedule of events. Not to mention those one-per-day Nine Patch blocks that I have to keep up with!
This week we are hosting our Chirstmas in July event. We take a different approach to our holiday fabric presentation. The bolts start to arrive as early as April/May, but we don't put them on the sales floor. We stockpile all of the holiday prints until mid July and THEN we bring them all out at once. That way our customers get to see the entire holiday selection at one time. Everything we have to offer is available at the same time. No wondering if something else you like better will arrive next month. No disappointment because the theme print is sold out before the coordinates arrive. It also means that as the temperature climbs into the 90's this week, I will be digging out Christmas decorations!
To prepare for the event I've been doing a lot of sewing and instruction writing. I've finally finished and published the instructions for the Hanukkah pillow in our button pillow series.
It always seems like Halloween comes about a minute after our Holiday Open House. I have no desire to rush the season, but to get to publishing and distribution in a timely fashion I also had to finish our new Fright Night pillow. Each of these 12 by 16 inch pillows feature a different technique. Hanukkah has detailed instructions for mitering corners. Fright Night features a chenille cat! The cat is made of 4 layers of black flannel that "fluff". As always, the cute decorative buttons are included right inside the pattern.
Both of the patterns and fabric kits will be available for our holiday event next weekend and the patterns will be available on our website very soon.
Summer also brings lots of out of town visitors. We have some "regulars" that stop by to see us and shop every summer as they pass through on their way to the beach or visit friends or family here in town. If you are "local" stop by and show us what you bought on your travels or join us any Monday night for Happy Hour at 6:30 for a free demo. If you aren't local and are passing through the Pittsburgh area this summer, stop in and say hello! No matter where you live, post a comment and tell me what you are doing to enjoy the summer!