Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!

As the year draws to a close, this is a time of reflection and forward-looking. So much has happened in the past twelve months, so many projects have walked in and out of the doors and friends have passed away. They will be very missed and well-remembered.

The New Year Looms

Did you keep any Resolutions from last year? Did you make any new ones for 2013? Goals can be a very good thing! I heard once that a goal is "a dream with a date". That's pretty good!

I made a goal to finish a quilt a month back in January and no, I didn't succeed! But on the other hand, I didn't fail miserably either. A few did get all the way through the binding process but no, not 12. sigh.

I do, however, plan to make that one of my resolutions again in another week because goals are in fact important. Not to beat yourself up for failing but as a measure of progress.

So, having gone out on that limb, with the handsaw strapped to my belt, here I go again!
funny gifs

1. FINISH one quilt each month, all the way through the binding.
2. Go through all the magazines and reduce the stacks in half. ALL of them.
3. Organize the fabric trays and show photographic proof right here. (ooo... this one might get me in trouble!)
4. Mail Talley's wedding quilt before July..... before their second anniversary. There! FIFY!
5. Quilt the Victory Quilt or die trying.
6. Donate two quilts. Or more.
7. Lose 15 pounds. Srly this time. (anybody with me?)
8. Start Christmas prep in August.

Okay, that is a good beginning. Very concrete goals. Nothing wishy-washy in that list and every one of them totally doable, right?

No. 7 is the creeper in the lot, however. I said this last year and lost not one pound. Grrr..... any advise out there? Except "cut out bread". I keep running into that one and my knee-jerk reaction is "la la lala, I can't hear you!" (I can; I have chosen not to. So far. )

Okay, so New Year, New Goals, New Beginnings!

As we finish a quilt, or at least, as we get close to finishing a quilt, our attention turns to new ones, right? If you are looking for a new project, Bright Hopes Quilting is a great place to check out!

Along with some very good kits and pattern bundles we have sprinkled throughout the store, we have some new Blocks of the Month series starting up in February. If you get the weekly newsletter, you already know about two of them. There is another in the works as well; we are awaiting the fabric for confirmation.

This is Kaleidoscope, a HUGE quilt and a nice mix of pieced blocks with applique sprinkled on the borders.

... and this is Noa's Garden and we'll be featuring the beautiful new Victorian Modern fabric line. Again, just a touch of applique to keep it interesting.

For the uninitiated, BOMs are a fun way to make an entire quilt over the course of a year, block by block each month, without the added stress of picking out the fabrics and hauling it all home to tackle whole. Each month, you pick up a kit to make at your speed and convenience. If you are at a distance, we are happy to mail it out. At the end, you will have completed a large quilt, hopefully learned a new technique or two and are ready to select your backing, batting and quilter. We supply all the fabric including binding and the patterns for one monthly price. And if you compare ours to a catalogue BOM, you will find our pricing far more reasonable.

 If you are interested in joining the BOM program, give us a call at 985-845-9554 or email at brighthopes1@bellsouth.net.

We Wish You All A Merry Christmas! 
Be safe out there through the holidays and have a Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Jan - Feb 2013 Calendar of Classes

What a great way to look forward to the New Year!!!!

 A New Calendar of Classes from Bright Hopes Quilting.

As always, you can zoom in to see up-close with that little 'sliding' button or print individual pages by clicking on the upper left corner. The last page has the calendar itself as a handy reference and makes a good method to remember the ones you have signed up for.

Don't forget the "Best Deal In Town!" 
$60.00 buys you as many in-store classes as you can take in a continuous 6 month period.

No Kidding! Give us a call for more information.
985- 845-9554

Anne Urhy

It is with sadness that we post this message about the passing of Anne Urhy.  Many of us in the area have quilts that were machine quilted by this very talented woman and many more have been given as gifts across the country and overseas.  Here is but a few, as we remember Anne.
Shop Hop 2012

 Blue Ribbon Winner at GSQA   2012
Pieced by Mona Lowe and Georgia Farnet
Pieced by Pearl Squires
Shop Hop Quilt 2011

Monday, November 12, 2012

Hurricane Sandy Relief Efforts

We here on the Gulf of Mexico know first-hand how devastating and lasting the effects of a hurricane can be to a "community". We also witnessed the generosity of our fellow citizens as we began the 'recovery process'. The difference between  and Sandy is weather.

It is really terribly cold and after 2 weeks there is still no relief in sight for thousands. So many have lost so much.

If you would like to help in large ways or small, please visit eQuilter.com and see what these good people in Colorado are preparing to do.

They are planning to ship up 5000+ quilts to the most needy and are asking all quilters to donate what they can with quilts and cash. They are joining forces with Timeless Treasures and Missionoflove.org to get this done.

If you want to help, please go to eQuilter.com for a comprehensive FAQ list  or send email questions to:


Yes, even ONE quilt will make difference to someone.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

I'll Have A Box Of Crayons, Please. A BIG One!

As a kid, I remember going back to school as an exciting event because of the new school supplies. Folders, lined loose-leaf paper, ball-point pens and unsharpened pencils. My favorite thing of all was a fresh new box of Crayola crayons. All lined up like soldiers, each color better than the other. It was an especially great year when I got the Big Box; what was it? 128 colors? Can that be right? It had a sharpener on the back...... well it seemed like a 128 colors and I was in heaven.

When we began receiving the Colorworks solid fabric line, all those memories came flooding back and with every shipment, I went slightly bonkier and now that we have all of them in stock, my eyes go awandering in their direction as soon as I walk in the door! And now that I have let the dust settle down from Market, I have been carrying home FQs and 1/3 yard cuts of these lovely creatures and, like a kid at recess on a rainy day, I've been playing!

It started with this Dresden plate using chevrons and Kaffe Fassett fabric. I love the use of the zig-zag to create the optical illusion and how the plate pops off the solid electic blue background! Fussy fussy center! If I'd had enough of the fabric at home, I would've fussy-cut the blades to all be identical; as it was, I had enough to pair each blade.

Then, I played with the Fassett/solid fabric dresden plate and a different direction, as though they were leaves. 

Here, I mixed it all up with directional chevrons and Fassett fabric set in an Amish block with a star center. Love this!

This a Modern Baby quilt top using solids with two different baby motif fabrics. The baby fabric is so cute and it is printed with unusual colors that I don't normally relate with babies so, clearly, this is what I gravitated towards! Then I paired them with, again, nonconformist baby colors to make a bold crib quilt. The pattern is by Modern Quilt Relish and it's called Market Values.

I have some new ideas percolating upstairs and wish there were more hours in a day than 24. As luck would have it, I get an extra one tonight.

Don't forget to set your clocks back!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Peppermint Place Quilt and Kaffe Fassett

 Here we are, Saturday at the Houston Quilt Market, all fresh and bright, raring to go.

Here we are 10 hours later, pack mules every one. It was a terrific day filled with great ideas and new things to bring back to the shop!

If you know me, (and I think you do!) you know what a fan I am of the fabrics from Kaffe Fassett and Brandon Mably. We have been stocking our shelves from Day One with a great selection of their colorful designs and add to them with every new release. Nothing changes this year either!

We have carried most of his quilt books as well and this year, Pearl brought back a limited number of signed books from the new publication, "Dreaming in Color". This is an autobiography of the man himself. It's a trip through the decades and eyes of the master of saturated color. If you have ever been curious to know from where Fassett drew his inspiration, you should check out this book. It is a steal at $40.00

 You may recall our cute Halloween "Sew Spooky" quilt and the "Little Red Barn" quilt patterns we have had for a few months from The Quilt Company. This is their new "Peppermint Place" Christmas quilt and we brought back these patterns from Market. This 6-part pattern makes a 64" square quilt, embellished with a printed panel and adorable buttons.  Everything included in our pattern bundle for $55.00.

Here you can see Pearl with the quilt itself to give you a good idea of the actual size.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

More Quilts from Houston

I have a few more quilts from the Houston Quilt Festival for you to enjoy.... in no particular order. 
Having just made a couple of Lone Stars myself lately, this one caught my eye. It is huge, pieced and appliqued exquisitely on shaded fabric and made by Mayumi Watanabe from Japan. 

"Color My World.... With Quilts!" by Sharon Schlotzhauer.  Now, this is tiny, approximately 9" x 12", probably smaller and I tried to see how it was done so I speak with no authority here. I think it's painted and quilted but I can't say with certainty. All I know is it drew me in.

I found it interesting that when I went to download the images in the camera, the one that immediately followed that tiny one was this: "Berne House Quilt", made by members of the Bernese Quilters in Switzerland. It was not near the last quilt I showed; it was just the next one that struck my fancy. Again, I don't have the dimensions but let me say, it is HUGE. HUGE!! and beautifully constructed. 

"Fifteen", by Camilla Watson from New Zealand. Techniques include photo-transfer, hand and machine piecing, fabric pens, applique and machine embroidery. It is stunningly, achingly beautiful.

"Cantilevers" by Jessica Levitt in New Jersey. This one just makes me smile a big grin. I love the illusions of transparency, the simplicity and cleanliness. The quilting is super!

Here is Gloria Hansen with her "It's Time". She had just arrived from New Jersey to find her abstract photo-transfer on silk quilt hanging upside down. (This was being dealt with with the organizers as we were conversing.)  When you read her description, the insights might strike you as familiar.

I hope all the attendees from the area affected by Hurricane Sandy come through safely and suffer the minimum of damage. Living on the Gulf, I feel your pain and worry. Thank you for sharing your work and time.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Oh man..... Keiko Hasegawa Made This Quilt

Having attended to all things mundane, I am now ready to Show You This.

I wrote that in caps and u to underscore that, what you are about to see is, to me and in one word, remarkable. It warrants one separate post.

The woman who quilted this is Keiko Hasegawa. IF you are going to the Houston Quilt Show, you will see it along the wall adjacent to the Festival side. If you aren't....... go, if just to see this quilt.

 This is what Keiko Hasegawa wrote to accompany her quilt:

"I've made a series of hexagon quilts. We had a baby named Canon in 2011 and this is for her. Listening to music, canons and singing along, I sewed this quilt."

Okay, now that we have gotten the details out of the way, let me show you this quilt.

I'm right, right? It's remarkable. It's amazing. It's fussy-cut, y'all. 
You see the center?
Go on.... look again.

Let's get up-close and personal.


So, the pieces, these hexagons, are smaller than a dime, fussy-cut and and and and heart-breakingly beautifully sewn and it's quilted. Oh yes. It's quilted...... but I can't see the stitches. Please, once again, feast your eyes on the flower-rows along the left and right upper-corners. Look at these brown flowers with the fussy vines... now, bounce back up to the large view!

I'm not even going to discuss the applique!!! You Must See This Amazing Quilt!

Keiko Hasegawa, wherever you are, thank you for sharing this with us. 

In the Presence of Rock Stars!

Just back from the 2012 Houston Quilt Market and I want to post some quick photos.

This time was a total blast because, having been there once before in 2009, I had a better idea of what to expect. And having had the pleasure of working with Georgia Farnet every Thursday for the past many years, I have learned even more about the quilting world.

Basically, I was a groupie at a concert this year. 


It started with Day One and strolling past Ty Pennington and attempting to be nonchalant about it. You try to keep a cool demeanor and not throw a fit (but let's face it, y'all. A celebrity in your midst is startling.)  This lasted approximately one second, when I turned nonchalantly around and saw Mona elbow Georgia and heard her say, "Georgia! Look!" They sidled up to me and said, "Did you see who that is!?" as if.

First of all, there are not as many men at the Geo. R. Brown Convention Hall as women, so they sort of stand out in the crowd. Then you add the fact that he stands tall and lean and rugged like a Ralph Lauren male model. Oh, yeah, then there's the throng of women surrounding him, looking upward, as, did I mention he is rather tall?

So being the shameless groupie that I am, I shoved Mona and Georgia over to him and said, "I want to get your photo with Ty. P!" He charmingly obliged.

Sadly, the lighting in the Hall obliterated the beautiful quilt and photos behind him but......nevermind! Look! He's got his arms around 'em! Ty (we're on first-name basis now) was very kind and I truly regret you can't see that quilt of his fabrics because it's a happy thing!

During Schoolhouse on Friday, I sat in on a session with Bill Kerr, Modern Quilt Workshop author (along with his wife, Weeks Ringle) as he discussed my current obsession, combining the modern quilt movement with the traditional and he showcased his new fabric line from Andover Fabrics, "Victorian Modern". You may have seen any of his Modern Quilts Illustrated magazines at Bright Hopes and samples from them hanging on our walls. Here he is with Pearl, as sweet as he looks in the photo. A gentleman in the truest sense of the word.

Jason Yenter. Full Stop.
Just before we left for Market, Georgia brought in her new sample of Jason Yenter's Deco quilt. It's hanging in the shop, glowing off the wall and we have the line and kit ready to go. So, when I spotted the man himself, I marched right up and blurted out, "That woman over there made your Deco quilt and it's gorgeous! Her name is Georgia!" 
"Really!? Wow! that was fast! I haven't seen it made up yet. When we designed it, we did it digitally so I am impressed." 
me- "She fussy-cut so many pieces and really did a marvelous job. It glows." 

Now all this while, Georgia is speaking with Mike Daecher with Craftsy just on the other side of the aisle and has no idea how close Jason Yenter is so after she has finished, we spin her around and point over to Jason. The photo speaks for itself. I don't know which of them is more impressed with the other.

Jinny Beyer, absolutely beautiful woman...... this photo was taken at Schoolhouse as she was discussing a specific pattern. I simply could not muster the courage to approach her directly.

Four years ago, Eleanor Burns published her Victory Quilts book, hardback, which spoke to me (yes, I pieced that one, no, it's not quilted) (yet) and I carted that heavy tome around for three days, in hopes of seeing the lady herself. That didn't happen. And I learned a valuable lession: Don't Carry the Unnecessary.

This year, I signed up for her Tales of the First Ladies Quilt for Monday. Our schedules for market changed and happily, I was able to change that class for one on Sunday. However, I assumed it was a lecture. Never assume. I didn't come to class with supplies!

Now, let me back up one day. The class I had for Saturday DID require supplies and I dutifully carried them to class, and it was a lecture instead. A good one! don't misunderstand, but now afterwards, I am carting around a bunch of tools and cutting mat, weighing me down and basically throwing off my groove.

So in I breeze, expecting a room full of chairs and instead I see tables littered with Babylocks and Eleanor Burns standing at the front, ready and fired up to do some sewing. Thank God, I was not the only one to show up empty-handed! I slunk into my seat like a naughty schoolgirl who left her (unfinished) homework assignment on the bus.

However, being the Pro she is, Ms. Burns brushed aside the bumps in the road, made everyone of us who arrived unprepared welcome and went to work introducing her new book, Tales of the First Ladies. The block you see featured behind us, Double T, was the block we constructed using the Quilt in a Day method. It works perfectly.

After the class, she signed our books and graciously posed for my ZOMG! photo. When she realized what I was doing, she responded in kind and said through her smile, "What are we doing?"    She has a great smile and as I hugged her, I whispered :You changed my world" but I don't think she heard me.     Acolytes can be tiring.

 Pearl, thank you for taking me to Market. I had, obviously, a BLAST!

Check back for more cool photos of quilts

Thursday, October 18, 2012

November - December Class Newsletter

Here is the new list of classes coming up in November and December . 

If it is slow to load, give it a minute... it's a big file and no, you still cannot view it on an iPad or iPhone (go figure! technology....)

As always, you can zoom in with the bar at the upper left half of that window or print it out, all the pages or just the ones you want, by clicking the upper- left most icon/button that sort of looks like a printer.

Call early to book your classes! They fill fast.

We are heading to Market next week in Houston and I hope to keep you informed here on the blog of the cool goings-on. Otherwise, you can 'friend' us on Facebook and see the up-dates there.

If you are going to the Houston Quilt Festival at the end of October, have a fabulous time and enjoy all the gorgeous quilts!

See you on the other side!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Flash Sale!

This time with a twist.

We have these Snap Sack kits in three patterns available at a great sale price. 

Open House, Patriot Stars and Sweet Hearts. Each small quilt kit is complete with pattern, fabric, backing and binding. All you need is batting and a little time. 
These would make a terrific gift either as it is or made to hang. 
Regularly priced at $15.99, these are on sale for only $9.99, while supplies last.

We mail anywhere in the USA.

October Surprise

In a few weeks, four of us from Bright Hopes Quilting will be heading to the Houston Quilt Market to see all the new and exciting fabric lines coming out in the Spring. Market is both exhilarating and exhausting a week but attendees always return with a carload of new patterns, notions and techniques to share with our customers.

We can't wait to show n tell it all but until then, here is something from us to you.

This is a downloadable pattern using charm squares and yardage to make this fast modern quilt, Charmed Blocks. It measures 56" x 62" and if using juvenile prints, this would make a quick baby quilt or toddler's nap blanket.

As with our class schedules, you can print the 2 page instructions by clicking on the print icon at the upper left of that window.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Kathy Brown and More Take 5 Quilts

Kathy Brown at The Teacher's Pet has been designing some really beautiful fabrics lately and we have quite a collection on the shelves here at Bright Hopes Quilting. She is a very busy woman, creating new quilt patterns and books & touring the country. Her most recent book is "More Take 5 Quilts".

Linda Kay just brought in her striking version of the Buzz Cut quilt from this book and she used Brown's newest fabric collection, Maddie, in the sample.

This is a very large bed quilt and Linda Kay will teaching it on Friday, Sept 21. Give us a call to sign up for the class.

Drop by to see more of Kathy Brown's fabrics and pattern as well.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

One Week Away From Our Anniversary

9 years ago, Pearl opened Bright Hopes Quilting with a dream of creating a place where quilters gather, share ideas and projects, show finished results and get to know others who love this thing we do: Make Quilts!

9 years. I can't believe it's gone so quickly but next week marks the date and Pearl has lots of fun in store to celebrate with the staff and customers.

If you get our weekly newsletter, you will have learned this afternoon that we will have lots of good sales to kick it off with and hourly drawings for lucky winners. Everyone is a winner with door prizes and a free 9-patch block pattern: Spools. This is our theme for the 3 day Sale-abration.

Each of the staff has created a "spools' quilt that showcases our individual personalities and we are inviting our customers to try to figure out who made each quilt. You will find all ten of them hanging from the ceiling. Take a sheet and list your answers. At the end of the month, we'll reveal the identities and let you know who got the most correct guesses.

Now, we didn't pull any slick maneuvers here; if you know us, you'll know which quilt is ours. I'll give you a hint though.

Last year, around this time we featured interviews with each of the co-workers here at Bright Hopes Quilting. I think you'll get a fresh insight from the answers to the questions.

Good luck guessing and mark your calendars for next Thursday through Saturday to join us and Celebrate 9 Years!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Hello Isaac!!!

Just giving everyone a head's up....

All you intrepid quilters out there in SE LA..... because Isaac is waffling around out in the Gulf, we are still deciding whether to be open Tuesday and/or Wednesday. We are open today for all your sewing needs but please call tomorrow and Wednesday to be certain.


September is almost here and with it brings our 9th Anniversary. Pearl and the crew have some fun things in store and you can learn more about it in the up-coming days here and through our newsletter.

Stay safe and we'll see you on the other side of Isaac!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Laissez Les Bon Temps Rouler!

Shop Hop 2012 is just a little over a week away. Have you been making your plans as to strategy? You know what I mean......

1. Depending on your personal location, you map out a route to take you to the various participating shops...... allowing enough time to get your passport stamped, to fill out a entry for the shop's $250.00 value basket and browse around for new ideas and see what that shop has to offer and head off to the next/nearest/most convenient shop. If this is your first time at any given store, you might want to spend extra minutes, especially if it happens to be one that is at a great distance from your home town.
 The Red Stars show locations of each of the store.

2. All the 9 shops are extending their open hours from 9am to 6pm Thursday, Friday and Saturday, August 16, 17 & 18,  to accommodate the hoppers. Here's a good tip: try to get to the shop that is the farthest away and be there when the store opens for business. That gives you more leisurely time to travel to the others and get something to eat in between.

3. Food, mustn't forget food on your travels. Is there a restaurant you've heard of in one of the towns and needed an opportunity to check out? This might be the perfect time to drop in! Or ask one of the shop employees.... you know they have recommendations.

4. To make the trip more interesting, take along a friend, even one who doesn't quilt. This could be your wife, if you happen to be a guy who quilts and she doesn't! Or vice-versa.... a gentleman who had accompanied his wife on several hops decided to purchase his own passport one year and he was the winner of our basket! You never know!

5. Above all else, Have Fun; this is not the time for stress. This is the time you give yourself to play. Think of it as recess. Remember those fleeting minutes at school when all the worries of lessons and grades were totally gone from your mind and you were completely in the moment. Just playing. Let your imagine run free and your eyes see something new. Meet old friends and make a few new ones.

Laissez Les Bon Temp Rouler indeed. Let the good times roll once again at our annual South Louisiana Shop Hop!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Flower Box Medley

Bright Hopes Quilting hosts several local quilt groups each month and one of them is Sharp Needles, a collection of quilters with various sewing techniques. Several are into applique and two are working on this beautiful project, Flower Box Medley by Colette Belt.  
This pattern is perfect for both the experienced quilter as well as the beginner. The pieces are large enough to have fun with and there aren't too many of them to get intimidated by. 
 Here you can see a couple of finished blocks and the one they are now working on.

Linda (left) using a technique of finger-pressing the seam allowance to the back and basting it fast. She then pins the pieces to the background and proceeds to stitch each piece in place.
 Karen (below) traces each piece onto waxed butcher paper and cuts them out accurately. She irons this to the right side of her fabric and trims to 1/4" for seam allowance. Then using the 'red dot' fabric as her positioning device, she needle-turns each piece using that paper template as her guide as to where to stitch.

These two went on a road trip to LaGrange, Texas to see the Texas Quilt Museum and turned it into their own "shop hop". At night they worked on these blocks and came to the meeting to blow me away with the results! Nice work, ya'll..... thanks for sharing it with us.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Dry-Erase Board, Your New Friend in the Sewing Room

LuAnn Kessi wrote a blog-post some time back that I had the great good fortune to stumble upon and she opened me up to a new idea I want to pass along!

I do my own machine quilting on a Tin Lizzie 18 (love my machine!) and am constantly on the lookout for exciting new quilting lines to try.  I love to free-hand with the thread and don't care to use pantograms although I do think they are useful on the right quilt-top.

Coming up with new repetitive motifs is always something of a challenge and when I can't come up with something new, I tend to revert back to my same-ol' same-ol'.  So doodling is a natural way to explore, letting the mind go free and see where the pen takes me. I also end up with a lot of wasted paper....... and that is where LuAnn Kessi comes in.

She showed photos of her dry-erase board and images of how she creates her lovely flowing lines of a fiddlehead fern as a quilting motif and my mind went "boing!!!!! Why didn't I think of that!?"

Not only is this a tool to practice your hand movements before you start stitching, it is great to have hanging close by as a reminder of various lines you plan to use as you travel from top to bottom.  Thank you, LuAnn!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Chez Moi "Sophie" by Moda

A few weeks ago, a friend on Facebook posted this handy chart she found by Benartex and I thought, how nifty is that! 

So I promptly saved it in for future reference. Go ahead and print it out..... I'll wait!

As a FQ fan, I tend to collect them, (lots of them!) and when I want to make a pattern or come up with one myself, I have to stop and do the math..... Not Any More. With that chart, I can quickly determine what I can get out of what I have on hand. It is amazing what you can cut out of a yard or two of fabric. 

Which brings me to this:

"Sophie" by Chez Moi at Moda

Here is a bundle that's hard to resist....... 6 fat quarters and 1 1/2 yard length of the beautiful bouquets...  The colors are clean and perfect for a simple quilt for just about anyone.   It would a great sleep-over quilt for a young girl or with enough blue, it can even be a sweet baby boy's crib quilt. 

Well, what can you make with 3 yards of fabric?  Slice up the FQs into half square triangles, make them spin in pinwheels and throw the outer border on for a fast lap-quilt. 

Need it bigger? Add a splash of Moda Marble blue as sashing and inner border.  

Need it even bigger? Add your own neutral or dark chocolate as a background color for the pinwheels and double the size of the finished quilt. 

What can make it even better? How about 30% off  as a FlashStashSale? 

Regularly priced at $29.99, this 3 yard bundle is available at $20.99 for a short time only while supplies last!

Call us at 985-845-9554 or email us at: brighthopes1@bellsouth.net

Sunday, July 15, 2012

What About That!

I just posted a message about the Louisiana Shop Hop 2012 taking place next month and ran through a list of the participating quilt shops.

Each store has it's very own and unique personality, one which reflects it's owner and staff. We are Bright Hopes Quilting; I've worked there since the doors opened and have watched the shelves fill and empty,  furniture move around the floor, the samples come and go and I have to say the name truly reflects the store on multiple levels.

The first thing a shopper will notice about us is the light that floods in through all the windows which allows one to see the fabric clearly. All along the perimeter, you will find more examples of quilt patterns, from stand-alone designs to those which come from recently published books. Lots of customers tell us that this feature of our shop helps them get a better idea of what to expect when they are shopping for a new quilt to make and they like it that someone took the time to construct one. We have so many samples hanging all around and even more in the back and since Pearl likes to keep things fresh, we often remake the samples in new fabrics and sell the previous sample in the back of the shop. Check out the back room when you are looking to give a quilt as a gift but don't have time to make one yourself!

 Oh and the fabric! We have some of the brightest and happiest bolts out there. And lots of them. Pearl has what I think of as our "wall of colors"; these are blenders  and tone-on-tones that run the gamut of every color and shade under the sun. In the center of the room is the cutting table and surrounding it in various directions you will find our asian and batiks, all the regional motifs like music, food and local sports teams (LSU and Saints), a terrific selection of baby fabrics, Black & Whites, and back to Brights and finally Christmas. We carry bolts with Dr. Seuss and Peanuts and halloween designs and have shelves of Kaffe Fassetts. When new groups come in, we showcase them as a set and always try to think of good patterns to use with them. Do you need a length of wide fabric for backing? We got you covered.

Now that you have all this fabric and are itching to get stitching, check out our great classes we offer every month. Some are old favorites and some are hot off the presses and we never go more than a few days without a class being held. Why do you need a class? Many of you don't but the teacher has made the class quilt and very possibly discovered something that makes the cutting or sewing easier the first time out. It's also a fun way to meet new people and try new things... you know, move a little out of your comfort zone and see where it takes you!

We have been receiving a steady stream of solids lately with more on the way, and are grouping them altogether for the Modernists, those new designers who are branching out in new directions in quilt-making.

This is a very exciting time in the world of quilt-making and encourage our friends to seek out new ideas and avenues in making their quilts and we enjoy helping to work out the plans to change a design to reflect the quilter and make the final piece a unique creation instead of a copy of the original. We think that is a very bright idea indeed.

Up-Dated!!!! Louisiana Shop Hop 2012 Passports!

Laissez Les Bons Temps Rouler! 

It's time for our annual Louisiana Shop Hop and here is a quick run-down for you.

We have nine (count'em' 9!) shops participating this year which adds more potential $250.00 Prize Baskets to win. As before, passports include $5.00 off coupons to each of the stores when you purchase $25.00 of regularly priced items and the passports go on sale next week for the low price of only $5.00.

So, you say you've never done a Shop Hop? You don't know the wherefor and the why? Well, the point of it all is to become familiar with shops you might not otherwise ever visit, those which are farther-flung than your favorite. Some stores are fairly recently opened and you might not have had an opportunity to check it out. We still get customers at Bright Hopes Quilting who say they didn't know there was a quilt shop in Mandeville and we've been here for nearly 9 years!

So, starting from here, you have to our Northeast Sew This! in Abita Springs then head South across the Lake to Mes Amis on Spanish Fort in New Orleans.

Now, head to the bayous of Houma to the Quilting Niche then West to Quilt Cupboard in Morgan City to and over to The Borne Quilter in Lafayette.

Wheuw! Back on I-10 to the East in Baton Rouge to Fabric Crazy and pop down to St. Gabriel to Cottage Creations and Quilts. Last stop,  Mama's Quilt Shop in Independence.

Now that is a little too far to make in one day, we know, so we have spread the Hop to cover Thursday, Friday and Saturday, August 16, 17 and 18 and extended our hours to allow for more time to get to each shop and actually have time to relax and breath. And if you know me; food is a big draw so I like to have a calm meal somewhere along the road. That is never a hard thing to find in this great State of Louisiana.

Okay, so once you're in the shop, then what? Well, each store has goodies to share and fun things happening to keep you energized, not to mention our own quilts we make each year to celebrate the theme of the Shop Hop. This year, we went for Unique and each shop has made a totally different quilt reflecting what is happening at that particular shop. Each shop will also be handing out a free block pattern they used to make their individual quilt.

This is the one Pearl made and we think it's a real winner! Such happy bright fabrics an what a great block!  We will have kits available at Shop Hop for those of you interested in making this cheerful quilt.

Oh, and at each store, you get your passport stamped and enter your name into that shop's Prize Basket. If you have those pre-printed return address labels with you, this goes much faster. (And the Prize Baskets are not filled with stale stuff, either! Oh no, we get serious when Pearl fills hers and winners are happy when they trot home with their stash!)

Then, prowl around and see what's new at your favorite shop or if this one happens to be a store you've never visited before, see what they have on the shelves. You never know where inspiration will find and take you.

If you do get to all 9 stores, do not forget to leave that fully-stamped passport at the last shop. This enters you to win one of four major prizes and the Grand Prize this year is a Viking Sewing Machine!

I have participated in 2 Shop Hops as a customer and as staff through all of them and am witness to tell you it really is a lot of fun when you go with a group of friends. Someone always spies an interesting notion or lovely piece of fabric. It is rare to find the same fabric in three stores.


But you tell me, driving all that distance is just not your thing. Well, Pearl has that covered for those of you on this side of the State. If you want to Hop in style, leave the driving to the professionals and hop on our Shop Hop Bus to Lafayette, Morgan City and Houma. We leave from the Bright Hopes parking lot on Saturday early enough to get to Lafayette when the doors open, then swing down to Morgan City and then on to Houma with a lunch provided and a snack for the return to Bright Hopes. You will get back in time to shop with us and get your passport stamped and be home in time for dinner.

 All this for only $65.00. But you have to act fast because Pearl has to confirm the reservation by mid-week, July 18. If this sounds like a good idea, give us a call at 985-845-9554. We must receive your check in order to confirm your set reservation. And if have any questions, give us a call!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Pearl's Big Adventure

When Pearl announced the other week that she was going to take a road trip to Paducah, KY, I just wanted to smuggle myself into the back of her Toyota. I knew she was going to have a whale of a time going to the quilters' Mecca and she certainly did.

I still haven't heard the details of what she saw and did (or ate. That's another big deal for me on road trips) but I think when she returns next week I'll get a better run-down to share.

Along the way, Pearl visited locations from her childhood and was on the look-out for Barn Quilts.

Here are a few examples of fine signs she risked life, limb and bent bumpers to capture. (no shoulders to pull off on).    I don't know the exact location for these but the Amish buggies in the last shot might be a hint! Again, the photos may be a little fuzzy but you get a good idea of some great blocks.

Kinda makes you want to build a barn.....