Wednesday, August 5, 2015

"I'm Rowing!"

Last year many North Carolina quilt shops participated in an event called "Row by Row Experience". Unlike a shop hop where you pay to participate and are required to visit as many places as possible in a weekend, this crazy event starts June 1 and goes through August 8. Quilters go to any participating quilt shop (this year in almost every single state!), pick up a FREE pattern, make 8 rows, quilt them together, bind the quilt, and return to one of the quilt shops where you got a pattern to show off your quilt. If you're the first to show off from that shop, you win a prize. Be the first to finish in your state, and you win a big prize. It's quite cool.

We allotted extra time on our trip to Gettysburg to do just this. I couldn't help but laugh in one of the shops as I was looking at their fabric, and a small group of ladies came into the store. The sales clerk asked if she could be of assistance, and they happily chirped "We're ROWING!"

We stopped at three shops in Virginia (one actually twice, but that's a different story), and my favorite by far was Lib's Place.

 Had to take two shots of the store as it wouldn't fit in one click (without crossing the very busy highway in front).The section on the right in this photo is their classroom space.
 And the left front part of the store is a mixture of quilting and crafts. Upstairs was scrapbook stuff, and the back walk (behind the stone wall/fireplace) was their fabric. The layout of shelves and the stairs near the front entrance (not much you can do about that!), it was not very wheelchair accessible, but the staff was very accomodating and gracious. My only peeve with the quilt section was they had a LOT of panels for sale, taped closed,,,with no pictures or panels on display to know what was for sale. Other than that, everything about that store was AWESOME. And the most incredibly, amazing thing in this store...was the bathroom.  Yes, I felt stupid, but I actually pulled out my phone and hoped no one was waiting outside and started photographing!!!

 Corner cabinet...I don't know why, but corner cabinets have always been one of my favorite things!
 Bobby thought this was crazy when I showed him the picture, but they had the most beautiful fabric, think upholestry or curtain fabric, on a hanger, sewed into folds as a toilet paper holder by the commode. VERY creative and decorative. Who would have thought a toilet paper holder could actually be described as elegant? I certainly wouldn't have!
 And I thought this hanging on the wall above it was quite nice as well.

 Normally quilts on walls, especially in a bathroom, are wall size, at most, twin size. NOPE! Not here! They had not one, but TWO full-size quilts!
 And the second quilt was applique (behind the loom).  I mean, who has a small sized loom in their bathroom?
 And this footstool! Child's size, but rather than trash it because the seat was worn-out, they simply made a seat out of ....(have you already figured it out?)....men's ties. How do I know that's what it was? One, the material, and two...my husband and Dad have some of those exact same ties.  How cool!
And this made me laugh. I'm not sure Bobby found it as funny as I did.

But these sweet people who had teenage boys - excuse me, young men - coming in to say hello to friend and grandparents, so kindly asked what other shops I had rowed to on my way, and when I mentioned that the last one I had visited was closed, they became very alert and concerned. "What? Was there not a sign on the door?"  I told them the closed sign, along with the hours for when the store would be opened was there. "You mean there wasn't another sign telling you...."

And that was when our trip took a very bizarre and interesting turn.

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