Archive | loving

local shop love. (+ a giveaway)


Supporting local and independent business is massively important to me, not only because I work as an independent designer myself, but also because it’s what I grew up with.


thread spools carolyn friedlander

(I love the needle rack from Friedlander’s that now holds my thread)


My grandfather immigrated to the US from Lithuania and opened his first store in Lake Wales, Florida sometime in the 1920s. He sold all kinds of stuff: clothes, fabric, housewares, toys. By the time I was born, my grandfather had already passed away and my dad and aunts were carrying the torch. Many of my earliest memories are of spending time in the store wrapping presents, pricing stuff, or helping people find what they were looking for.


friedlander's scissors

(another relic from the Friedlander archive that I use often and even at the last show)


In a lot of ways,  it was a totally different way of doing business back then. Shelves were stocked with actual needs and quality products, merchants had an active relationship with their customer, and solid customer service came naturally and without anyone having to tell you to do it.


While my family’s stores no longer exist, I LOVE that I can still find the same values and practices that I grew up with in the local quilt shops that I frequent. I love how each shop emits its own flavor–a product of the many hands and hearts that create and nurture them. They build community and offer us the chance to connect with each other over the things that mean so much to us. Plus, I love not knowing what fun thing I’ll find from one quilt shop to the next!


And they just sell better stuff, which is a total testament to the industry itself and how much it supports the little guys.


Visit Your Local Shop Day is on January 24, 2013 and right around the corner. I’m very happy to support it, and I’m also gonna do a giveaway in its honor. (See below for details.)

Here’s my official promo for the campaign, the short and sweet version.


Carolyn-Friedlander_Local Quilt Shop Day

And then I’ll give a shout-out to some of my favorite local shops and their nearby complements–I know I like some nourishment after a little fabric shopping. They’ve all supported me, and I’m very happy to support them.


Heartfelt Quilting and Sewing . Winter Haven, Florida

This shop is filled with the sweetest staff ever, and they have totally nurtured me from having no skills at all, to the fully obsessed quilter that I am today. Make sure to check out my open house on March 5 at their Lakeland store.

… Andy’s Igloo. The sign says “best ice cream for 62 years.” Let’s just say they know what they are doing.

Fabric Warehouse . Lakeland, Florida

Another great shop with lots of fun fabrics, and I think they might have been the first shop to pick up my patterns! In March, I’m teaching a class through them at the Sewing Expo for my Aerial quilt.

…Pelican’s shaved ice in Auburndale.  Perfectly positioned on my route home.

Inspire Quilting and Sewing . Plant City, Florida

These guys are super new, but have already established themselves as one of my favorite quilt shops. The light-filled shop is full of great samples and beautiful fabrics. Located in an unfamiliar town to me, I’m excited to get to know it more in the future.

…There’s a candy shop and tea room across the street, and then a fabulously home-grown and rustic cafe around the corner. um, hello.

The Dragonfly Quilt Shop . Vero Beach, Florida

This shop is about and hour and a half away, but I love getting over there when I’ve got the chance. It’s just a few miles from the beach and full of that warm, beachy vibe.

…Snowballs. the BEST shaved ice. Just down the street. You’re welcome.

(Sometimes I’m not sure which is more robust–my sweet tooth or my “fabric” tooth…)

Of course there are tons of other great shops out there, these are just some of my nearest and dearest. For more ideas in your area, peruse my shop listings, and also fill me in on some of your favorites by leaving a comment.

All comments made by Thursday Jan 24 at 11am (EST) are eligible for the giveaway. You’ll have to stay tuned for the prize…it’s a surprise! But it’s good. Don’t worry.

Happy Weekend!

And check out these other folks on the Local Quilt Shop Day tour!

– Abby Glassenberg (While She Naps)

– Alissa Haight Carlton (Handmade By Alissa)

– Allison Harris (Cluck Cluck Sew)

– Cara Wilson (Cara Quilts)

– Cheryl Arkison (Dining Room Empire)

– Christina Lane (The Sometimes Crafter)

– Debbie Grifka (Esch House Quilts)

– Diane Gilleland (CraftyPod)

– Pam Harris (Gingerbread Snowflakes)

– Jane Davidson (Quilt Jane)

– Jen Carlton-Bailly (Betty Crocker Ass)

– Krista Hennebury (Poppyprint)

– Laurie Wisbrun (Scarlet Fig)

– Michelle Freedman (Design Camp)

– Monica Solorio-Snow (Happy Zombie)

– Pat Sloan (Create with Pat Sloan)

– Penny Layman (Sew Take A Hike)

– Rachael Gander (Imagine Gnats)

– Rae Hoekstra (Made By Rae)

– Rita Hodge (Red Pepper Quilts)

– Victoria Gertenbach (The Silly BooDilly)

Comments: 49 | Leave a comment

hello new year!

I’m feeling quite refreshed after taking a break. I had my computer turned off for at least a solid week, which is nothing short of a miracle. I did sneak a moment here and there on my ipad, but overall my effort to disconnect was successful, and my chi feels good.


While unplugged, my biggest goal was probably not to obsess over my schedule, making lists, or filling every moment with something productive. Aside from a couple of personal projects in mind, I just wanted to let go and enjoy. Some highlights were getting lost in good reading, knitting on a project that had gone totally dormant, spending time with family and friends, baking, sewing, and even getting lost in a 24 marathon. It’s been good.


Cue the visuals.


Shrug update: She’s being blocked, which means I’m closing in on the finish line. It’s always amazing to me how much lace opens up when blocked–a good reminder since I’m always tempted to skip this step. (Try to ignore the heinous pink towel and shoddy blocking system.)


blocked shrug


Single girl‘s got some new additions. It’s fun being able to work in some architextures.



single girl rings

I’ve been page-turning to Kaffe Fassett, vegan ultramarathoning, and industrialized fashion (not pictured). All very enjoyable.


reading book pile


Craft-wise, I’ve got a stack of flagged pages and projects from some recent acquisitions. (Apparently I’ve got a Japanese obsession going on. What can I say?)


craft book pile


And I’ve even gotten a start on a tunic from the Stylish Dress book (on top). I need to work out a few alterations, so it’s gonna hang for a bit while I ponder on that. The tea calendar was something I picked up at Quilt Market from Spoonflower. All it needed was some architextures binding to finish it off, which miraculously felt like the thing to do one afternoon.


tunic in the making


So, lesson learned that breaks are good. I’m feeling pumped to start a new year off with some energy and excitement for whatever it may bring. I’ve taken time to review the good stuff of 2012 and will continue to map out goals for 2013. I do love my goals.


Hope you are able to do some of the same. Happy New Year!



Comments: 1 | Leave a comment

swatch love: stamped.


First, I’ve got a quick announcement in regards to where to find architextures and my new block-of-the-month, Local. I’ve been fielding lots of questions since Market and have promised to keep those of you updated. For anyone interested, I’ve just started seeing the fabric pop up online (see here and here), and the BOM here, which means it should be arriving in your local shops super soon!


Now that we have that out of the way, I wanted to devote a little attention to a fabric line that I’ve been really excited about–Stamped by Ellen Luckett Baker for Kokka. I finally got my hands on some this week. It’s so pretty and super usable, and I can’t wait to make lots of things with it.


stamped by ellen luckett baker


As the weekend approaches I’m thinking about some sewing that I want to get into, and I thought I’d play around with some fun possibilities. One thing that I love about this line is that it’s so mix-able, especially with my stuff.


Roll the visuals.


(with some dear stella)

stamped architextures_1


stamped architextures_2


stamped architextures_3


stamped architextures_4


(a valentines-y combo)

stamped architextures_5


stamped architextures_6


stamped architextures_7


(the sampler print is great)

stamped architextures_8


(with some kona flame)

stamped architextures_9


stamped architextures_11


stamped architextures_10


(with some kona mango)

stamped architextures_12


stamped architextures_13


stamped architextures_14


stamped architextures_15


(with some kona mango)

stamped architextures_16


stamped architextures_17


Decisions, decisions.

Hope you can get into some good, weekend sewing!



Comments: 5 | Leave a comment

Site by Spunmonkey.