Tuesday, October 25, 2016

So...... Happy New Year, Happy New Projects

2016 is well behind us, now and we've been meeting each month at Annie's Sewing in Covington each FIRST Thursday of the month. This is an open  'sit n sew' for all to come and enjoy.

If you are interested, stop by Thursday, March 2 and see for yourself how open and light-filled this workspace is and meet some of the participants.

If you are READY TO JOIN in, bring your project, a sack lunch and drink and $10.00. We start showing up around 9:45 and stitch til around 2:45 in the afternoon. 

Don't forget to bring a Show n Tell..... we've been seeing some impressive quilts and it's so much fun to see what people have been producing.

GSQA is gearing up for Seminar and there are still seats available for taking classes. Here is the link to learn more about the different classes offered this year.

Seminar is March 15 - 18 at the Hilton New Orleans Airport location in Kenner.

AND.... We're BACK!

Yes, it's true..... Bright Hopes Quilting in Mandeville, LA has officially come to an end, now. It's been a great 13 year odyssey which Pearl began with no plan other to last 5 years and take it from there.

And every year on our anniversary, we celebrated another year in business, good friends & company and so many lovely quilts.

 Sew Many Quilts!!!!!! 

We have loved seeing bolts of fabric transform into stunning quilts and get to know the people who made this magic happen.

We hope we helped quilters learn new techniques, try new fabric combinations; you know, basically venture farther from the comfort zone. Life is learning.

Now, just because the door has closed doesn't mean windows can't be opened and with this in mind, we want to let people in our area know that we who were a part of Bright Hopes Quiling INTEND to stay active in the quilting arena here locally and hope to meet up with you as the months go by. We've got a lot of catching up on quilting to do!

Just so you know, we have some of our terrific samples available for sale on our new Etsy Shop Page, too!

If you would like to stay in touch or show us how your quilt turned out, please go to our Bright Hopes Quilting Facebook page, join or follow us to get occasional updates and meeting details. 

Please, please, please,  Post your photos on our page so we can see what you're up to. Stay in touch, please, by all  and every means.

 We're going to miss YOU most of all.

When the www.brighthopesquilting.com page goes silent, you can always check back here and on Facebook to see what's happening. So, Link us on your Web Browser, and see what's cooking with the Bright Hopes Quilting Crew!

Thank You For 13 (!) Marvelous Years.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Class Schedule for July and August 2016

Here you go!!! A new roster of classes and descriptions for you to look over.

If you see something you like, drop by and sign up. We'll have the supply list ready for you.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Christmas In July Comes Early to Bright Hopes Quilting

We're still 10 days away from July but we're already stocked up on some beautiful Christmas Fabrics here at Bright hopes Quilting.

Moda and Robert Kaufman Fabrics produce some gorgeous bolts every year and this selection is down-right scrumptious.

Here is the Flourish panel for 2016. It measures 24" x 42".

and just a few of its "friends" in the collection.

Those ornaments are so stunningly realistic!

Now, fom Moda, here are just a few more to tease you with:

North Woods by Kate Spain

and Holly Night

You can find all these fabrics and much more at the shop AND over at our new Online Store, open 24 hours a day... we never sleep!

Shop with an easy mind knowing our encryption system keeps your credit card information secure and we ship all orders through the USPS.

If you can't make it to the shop, we'll come to you.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

The launch-date is one week away now and we are ramping up our decorations around the shop to reflect the summer-long event.

Beginning June 21, we, and all participating shops, will be handing out a free pattern to make this 9.5" x 36.5" row. We are also selling kits to make this row with the fabrics you see here. The pattern is in the kit. 
Now, here is the deal. Yes, the pattern is free for the asking but we will only give out one pattern per customer. We cannot, by rules we agreed to conform to, give you an extra pattern for a friend or relative who was unable to come into the shop.

Please keep in mind that we are creating and giving away our artistic endeavors and all we ask is that you agree to the rules under which we do this.  

We ask that you do not make copies of our pattern and give them away. 

Ok, with that out of the way, here's the good stuff: If you are the first person to bring in a COMPLETED quilt, you will win our fabulous Fat Quarter bundle of TWENTY-FIVE (25) (!)  gorgeous batiks. 

​When we say completed, we mean it has to have at least 8 rows, be thoroughly quilted, edged the binding AND have a label on the back. Last year, we were one of the last whops to have a winner walk through the door so don't be discouraged if your quilt is taking a long time to get done...... just keep going!

We have a sweet license plate as well for sale, while supplies last. 

And a super-fun pattern to use them in! Here is the Butterfly House Braggin' Pole by PatchAbilities. $9.00

We have kits with the 2016 RbR fabrics to make a roomy tote-bag and more!

So grab a friend, make a route and get ready to hit the road, collecting your patterns and kits. You can see all the Louisiana Shop Rows at their Facebook site here: https://www.facebook.com/LARowbyRowExperience/?fref=ts


Wednesday, May 18, 2016

We are so happy and excited to announce the Everything "Bright Hopes Quilting" website for all your quilting needs!

 For the past several months, we have been ferverishly working away, behind the scenes as it were, creating a new website. At long last, we launched the Live Version this morning and are making the announcement this evening.

While there have been times, I've been imagining it would look like this:

It's in fact often ended up more like this!:

Let's take a quick look-around and see what is new!
     The BIGGEST change is our New Online Shopping Site,  in the Menubar, where you will find all our newest fabrics and great tools and patterns. For those times when you just can't make it to the Quilt Shop and you have to have it, shop online and know that your items will be winging their way to your doorstep in a matter of days. Our Hours of Operation will remain the same and now we will be working our magic when the door is closed!

     We have broken down the departments into easily-navigated categories.  Click on any of the pages as you get familiar with the new Online Store.  And shop with confidence that your purchases and your email & credit card privacy are made through and kept safe with our Secure Checkout system.
You can now read our Bi-Monthly Class Newsletter right here on our comprehensive website by clicking on the tab above and print the calendar on the last page for your personal use.

     In addition, we have set up a Calendar as well so you can glance into the future and see what's coming up in the next  month, Click on any date in the calendar for more information on up-coming classes and events, including the location!

     At the bottom of the page, you will find links to our New Blog, Shipping Information and Class Policies. Our Tutorials feature tools and techniques we think are awesome!

     Here you will also find links to our Social Media sites such as Facebook, Pinterest, and YouTube.

     Finally, you will be able to click back over here to our original Blog to read all our older posts by clicking on that  

We will be transitioning from hereon forward and posting identical posts for one month as we move to our new location.
     Thank you for reading this and we hope you find our New! Improved!! website to be easy-to-use and helpful in creating beautiful quilts!

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

May - June 2016 Class Schedule

Here you go, folks!!! We have another great roster of classes coming up these next two months, so check them out and see what you'd like to learn next.

Pages 1 and 2 list all of our 'sit n sews' which are open to the public and free of charge. Come join the fun in any one of 7 (!) days when we gather to work on a variety of projects. We have the Splendid Sampler on the last Monday of each month, the Knots which work on appliqué, the "Little Ladies" who make miniature quilts and more! You can read about them in the descriptions.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Wash Your Fabrics, Dearies

We get asked, often, if shoppers should wash the fabrics before they use them. The answer is usually: yes. But it occurred to me that a picture is worth a thousand words so here are my thoughts on this subject. Oh, yeah.... and a few pictures, as well.

Back in the day when I first started quilting, the Rule of Thumb was to wash your fabrics, every one.

I diligently followed orders, tossing into the machine yardage as I arrived home, lest any one of them managed to infiltrate my stash. But the years marched on; as I became more lax and the stash grew out of control, another element entered the picture: Pre-Cuts.

What to do with those jelly strips, layer cakes and, yoikes! charm squares? How should we handle these delightful little gems? They'd all end up in shriveled shreds of their former glory!

There are ways to think about and deal with the dilemma and everyone I know has their way of doing it.

About four years ago, I started on a Judy Niemeyer pattern which was to be entirely made in Batiks. Most of them were from the Hoffman 1895 collection which are primarily solid in nature; rich drenched color which is so important in the JN look I was aiming towards. 

Alas, I did not wash the fabrics. In my haste to get started, I sliced up, (as per her instructions) and made 24 units... and then put the project aside. Life had other plans for me and now, years later, I dredge the project out and pick up where I left off.

And looking at the units I made and ALL THOSE chunks of batiks, I realized with a foreboding sense of doom doom doommmm, I didn't wash them! Oh What To Do, Indeed!

"WHY!!?? These are dyed and washed batiks! They get washed and washed during production, right?!" Yeah, you'd think so.... but  Red and Black batiks are the least stable and you should always expect some of the dyes to release from the fabric. And that's not all...

The first thing I did was to take all the uncut yardage and give them a good soaking in hot water, one by one, to see what would happen. I started with the reds and blacks  (I'm not going to bore you with the obvious results there) and worked my way through to the purples and blues and found some interesting results.

I did all the purples and set them aside. 

This is a brilliant blue batik and LOOK at the amount of purple dye releasing! I was shocked. When I dropped that fabric into the hot bath, I was NOT expecting anything to come out. 

 This is after the 2nd rinse.... still a lot of dye is releasing....

 This is after the THIRD!!!!!

And this is in a cool water 4th rinse. 

So, with that result, I went to place the wrung-out pieces into the spin cycle and as I picked them up, I noticed one of the purples had left a mark on the counter.... it was STILL releasing its dye! I put it back in hot water and THIS happened!

Ok, so are you with me? Are you thinking what I'm thinking right about now?

I'm going to have a BIG problem with all the units I have already made when I go to wash this quilt some time in the future. 

But all is NOT lost. There is a product out there called Color Catchers and they look like dryer sheets. You can find them, usually on the top shelf, with the fabric softeners at any grocery store. They will be your Best Friend in the laundry room if you have done what I have done.  

Place one of the sheets IN with the quilt when you wash it and MOST if not all of the releasing dyes will be captured in this sheet. I do NOT recommend using hot water to wash any quilt..... cool is fine. And if you prefer to wash your quilt in a bathtub, I would still toss in a Color Catcher.

Additionally, once the spin cycle is completed, quickly remove the quilt and open it up so that no fabric is pressing against another. This is the opportune time for colors to transfer to another part of your quilt, not just leach out into neighboring areas. So, you really want to avoid this.

Now, what about those pre-cuts? Well, you can leave them as they are, make your project and wash them with the Color Catchers. Or (and especially in the case of batiks, which really are drenched in dyes), you can soak them gently in a basin of hot water, rinse in cold water and carefully press the excess water out and let them air dry. I don't recommend using the tumble dryer.... you will not like the result. 

So, I learned a lesson (the hard way. As usual). It's back to washing the fabrics for me. I wish I had not gotten out of the habit.
Up-date: Yeah, I didn't have enough fabric to have the 'scope' I was wanting so I came home with more of the darks. These and all of the light batiks have now been washed, rinsed and dried. I have a few more, shall we say 'surprises'? to show you.
This is another dark blue fabric which has released more purple dyes. 

The take-away from this is: regardless the color your former tidy-whities might appear after an errant sock or tshirt got tossed in with them, it don't mean there was something in that load that looks like the color they all are now. Dyes are funny creatures.

And do NOT let your guard down on the lighter colors, either. Here are some oranges and yellow which let go of their dyes, big-time.

Before Water


(no effect!)

 Now, they might not effect dark colors in future quilts, but they sure would spread their love onto any whites they might find themselves rubbing up against.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Gulf States Quilting Association Bi-Annual Show in Review

The Gulf States Quilting Association’s Bi-Annual Show was held last weekend at the Northshore Harbor Center in Slidell and we have a few quilts to share with you in review.

They say “It ain’t bragging if it’s true” so let’s show you a few of the different ribbon winners!

Best of Show went to Leslie Kiger and her stunning Medium Large Pieced Judy Niemeyer 1st Place quilt, “Mad Dash”. If you shopped here at Bright Hopes 6 years ago or so, you will have certainly met her and remember what a void she left behind when she moved from Louisiana. 

Her other quilt, “It’s Not All Black and White” took 3rd place in the Medium-Large Sampler category.

Mary Green took home the Red Ribbon in the Pictorial Landscapes category with “Crescent City Triptych”. 

Mary’s remembrance book, “The Life and Times of Shirley M. Kneale”, won Honorable Mention in the Home Decor category.

Mary Gerardi’s “Regal Fisherman” won 3rd Place in the Pictorial-Animals division... 

and her beautiful appliqué, “My Favorite Season” won the 2nd Place ribbon in the Small Appliqued/Mixed Block category.

Chris Teague won 2nd Place in the Medium Large Sampler Block category with “All the Lovely Ladies” from the Downton Abbey Mystery Quilt-Along....

 and 1st Place with “Fassett Medallion” in the Medium Large Pieced - Stars category.

Mona Lowe brought home the National Association of Certified Quilt Judges Award for her miniature beauty, “PS, Don’t Forget to…” 

and Honorable Mention for her other Miniature category, “Pineapple Smoothie”.
Congratulations to members of our staff!!!! 

In no particular order, here are a few more quilts for you to enjoy…..

"Summertime Fire Island Hosta" by Barbara Gardner, quilted by Cindy Braiwick. This quilt won the Viewer's Choice Award.

"Hope - From Light to Dark", by Renee Lapland and Lori Boyter,
 1st Place in the Art - Traditional category

"Salsa", by Ava Craig

"Color-Wheel Cubed" by Dorinda Evans, quilted by Nancy McNally, 
1st Place Medium Large Pieced

"Celestial Fantasy" by Lynne Reamey, 2nd Place Art - Traditional

"Fiesta de Talavera", by Carol Jaynes  1st Place Med. Large Applique Floral, Winner of Best Computerized Machine Quilting by Tammy Finkller Oberlin

And finally, "Aztec Sun Burst" by Alesia M. William, which I had to go back and gawk at no less than three times. This quilt took 2nd Place in the Medium Large Judy Niemeyer category and just feast your eyes on the extraordinary skill Ms. Williams employed with her hand-guided machine quilting. 

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Tote-Ally Awesome Saturday Happens Again THIS WEEKEND!

When we told you how could stretch your dollars further with our Tote-Ally Awesome Bright Hopes Tote Bag, we meant it and the next day for saving money happens this weekend.

Bring your tote bag in on Saturday and save 20% of your entire purchase of regularly priced items. 
(The Best Deal in Town Class Coupons and Gift Certificates are excluded)

Now, as you can see our Special Days of Savings will happen randomly and with a few days of warning to get the thrifty quilter ready to take advantage of the event.

We will also send this message out on our Facebook Page so if you want to be sure to not miss the announcement through email, pop over to our FB page and join us by hitting the Like or Follow button.

And of course we will announce it on our newsletter so there is no way to miss out if you have your tote.

Did I mention you must bring the tote with you?

You must have your tote-bag with you to take advantage of the discount but your purchases do not have to all fit inside it........
 I mean, you could try to stuff it all in but it doesn't have to...... it could be fun to watch while you go for it, though......