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What's New at CQ 04/29/21

"America is not a blanket woven from one thread, one color, one cloth." Jesse Jackson

Make this bag!

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Dear Sewing Stalwarts,

We all worry about whether or not to wash our fabrics and how to wash them, but did you ever give any thought to how the thread you use in your quilt reacts to being washed? I didn’t, until I got an email from Aurifil about it.

Aurifil has three color categories: 23 Reactive Colors (marked with a * on their color chart), 211 Indanthren Colors, and 36 Multicolor (variegated threads, marked with a small black square on the Aurifil color chart). Find the color chart here

Reactive Colors are created using a reactive dye, a type of deeply colored organic material that attaches itself through a chemical reaction. This chemical reaction forms a molecular bond between the dye and the fiber. The dye then becomes a part of the fiber and is a lot less likely to “bleed” like something that was dyed by simple absorption. If you look at the color chart, you’ll see that these are blues, reds, and purples, much like fabric, which have a greater chance of bleeding than other colors. Aurifil’s process helps reduce the incidence of bleeding.

Reactive Color Care Instructions:
     • Launder without bleach
     • Machine wash in cold water – no more than 140°F (60°C)
     • Tumble dry cool
     • Iron on low heat

Indanthren Colors are seen as more heavy-duty and have a high level of colorfastness. ‘Indanthren’ is a trade name for the first synthetic vat dyes, discovered in 1901 by a German chemist named Renohn. Vat dyes are insoluble in water, mainly used for cellulose or protein fibers (plant or natural fibers like cotton, flax, or wool), and have a final color that is developed in the oxidation process. Indanthren dyes can withstand light, bleach, and somewhat higher temperatures.

Indanthren Color Care Instructions:
     • Launder with bleach (as necessary) in cold water only
     • Machine wash in cold to warm water – no more than 160°F (70°C)
     • Tumble dry at low to no heat
     • Iron on low heat

Multicolor threads are also known as variegated threads.

Multicolor Thread Care Instructions:
     • Launder without bleach
     • Machine wash cold
     • Tumble dry at very low or no heat
     • Iron on low heat

You can find more information on the Aurifil website for each type and weight of thread. Aurifil tells you what the uses of each thread are, what needles are recommended for each thread, what bobbin thread to pair it with, and how to wash it.

Due to space restrictions, Capital Quilts doesn’t carry every color of Aurifil 50wt. thread. We have a color chart here in the shop, and if you need a color that we don’t carry, I am happy to order it for you.

Teachers Needed: If you are interested in teaching a quilting class, technique class, EQ8, or longarm quilting class, please contact me at 301-527-0598. The basic requirements are that you provide a model, a description of the class, and a supply list far enough in advance of the scheduled class that I can adequately advertise the class for you through my social media resources and that you advertise the class on yours. Class may be by Zoom or in person. We are finding that the software classes, such as EQ8, are better on Zoom. You act as an independent contractor, not as a member of the CQ staff.

Get your quilts appraised!  Phyllis Twigg Hatcher will be here on Saturday, May 15th.  As an appraiser certified by the American Quilter’s Society, she has been tested on her knowledge of fabric dates and construction techniques, her ability to recognize patterns, and regional influences, and awareness of values. She is sworn to the Code of Ethical Practices. Phyllis is qualified to appraise both antique and new quilts, tops, blocks, and quilted wearable art in all traditional, contemporary, and innovative styles. She is a member of the Professional Association of Appraisers- Quilted Textiles.

Why Appraise?
  • To establish a replacement value for insurance purposes before a loss (stolen, lost, destroyed, or damaged)
  • To meet insurance company requirements for a "Fine Arts Floater" including transit and display
  • To establish value for donation, gift, or estate purposes as required by the IRS
  • To obtain a descriptive written record for the family
  • To mail your quilt and/or meet requirements for entrance in a textile competition
  • To determine fair market value for the sale of quilts
  • To accompany a quilt to be given as a gift
A confidential written appraisal is completed for each quilt and a photo is taken for identification. Appraisals take approximately 30 minutes. You will receive a professionally written document. Make an appointment for Saturday, May 15th by clicking here.

We are reinstating the Capital Quilts Blue Bag program! Bring your Blue Bag with you and let us know that you have it when you check out. We will put your name in the jar for an end-of-month drawing. Don’t have a Blue Bag? Reusable Blue Bags may be purchased in the shop or online (type “reusable” in the search window) for $4.99.

There has been some confusion about our Birthday Discount. We no longer do the Birthday Month program. We now send you a coupon on your birthday for a 10% discount on all regularly-priced items in one transaction; you have 2 weeks to make use of the coupon. If you don’t receive your coupon on your birthday, please check with us; it could be we don’t have your birthday noted in our computer system.

Go ‘n’ Piece,


All of these domestic machine quilting classes are full of tips and tricks and great information. Prizes are given out during the class. You’ll receive a coupon code to use to get discounts on any purchases you make from Westalee/Sew Steady. Best of all, you will learn how to use templates and rulers to create beautiful quilts.

If the date and time of a Sew Steady class are inconvenient for you, register for the class anyway; you have the ability then to watch the class as often as you like for the 30 days following the class, plus you’ll get the discounts and downloads.

From Beginner to Quilt:
This is the perfect class for those wanting to learn the basics of Template Quilting and Ruler Work. Using Westalee’s Sampler Set 1 Templates, Donelle McAdams will start with basic designs and build up to the larger design of a completed quilt, piecing all together in a quilt-as-you-go method. You will have a sampler quilt finished at the end of this class! This is an 8-session class series.
     • Date and time: Mondays and Thursdays, May 3-27, 2021, 2-4 EDT
     • Fee: $15 per session or $80 for the series
     • See Donelle talk about this class here.
     • Click here to register for this class.
     • View the Supply List here.

Lattice Quilt Ruler Work Class:
In this 4-part series of classes, Janet Collins dives into Westalee’s new London Collection Sampler templates. Learn how to use the TempLee Quilt Technique to create new, interesting and intricate designs using the templates and Patchwork Rulers.
     • Date and time: Tuesdays and Thursdays May 11, 13, 18, & 20, 7-9pm
     • Fee: $60 for the series or $20 for the first session only. Includes digital download of the Lattice Quilt pattern, valued at $25.
     • Register for this class here
     • Click here to see the Supply List. 

Dia De Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) Challenge
It seems I have inadvertently ordered 2 bolts of Day of the Dead Dog fabric. Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos) is celebrated on November 1 & 2. Google tells us “Assured that the dead would be insulted by mourning or sadness, the day celebrates the lives of the deceased with food, drink, parties, and activities the dead enjoyed in life.” I am issuing a Challenge to all you quilters out there: $8 gets you a yard of Day of the Dead Dog fabric. Make a quilt that is at least 20” square that speaks to the Day of the Dead holiday. How do you honor the lives of deceased loved ones? Perhaps you would remember a deceased pet. Quilts are due October 15, and will be returned to the maker(s).  Please be sure to put a hanging sleeve on the back, either sewn on or pinned on with safety pins. The sleeve should be at least 4” wide and one inch shorter than the width of the quilt. 

SHOPPING AT CAPITAL QUILTS: Good news! We opened up the shop on April 1. We still have shopping by appointment from 11-1. Please give us a call at 301-527-0598 if you’d like to make an appointment to come shop in the store. You can usually get in the same day. This time is for those who have not yet been vaccinated and/or feel more comfortable shopping in a controlled environment. It would also be a good time to shop if you are picking out a lot of fabrics for a quilt, as the staff will have more time to dedicate to you. From 1-5, seven days a week, the door will be unlocked and we will be open to all comers. We require that everyone wear a well-fitted mask and sanitize their hands upon entry to the shop. If more than 10 customers enter the shop, we may ask you to wait outside until someone leaves. We must still protect ourselves against the virus; it is not gone yet, and we don’t want to have to shut down again as is happening in some places right now.

If you are exposed to the virus and/or get a positive COVID-19 test result, please do not come to the shop, and if you have been to the shop while you may have been infectious, please call the shop so that we may let others know. There is nothing political about this, and there is no judgment from us. We just want to do our best to help stop the virus from spreading and protect our friends and families and community.

Be sure to walk through our Gallery when you are here; there is a new show hanging on our walls. The quilts of Marty Fry now on display represent her favorite style of quilting. “I love the meditative nature of machine piecing, the movement of needle and thread while hand appliqueing, and the fun of playing with as many fabrics as I can,” she says. “I rarely buy fabric for a specific project. Quilting just supports my other hobby of fabric collecting.”

We are having classes via Zoom and, to a limited degree, in the shop. We will make the virtual classes as easy as we can for you, sending you a link to the Zoom class. All you have to do is add the Zoom app to your computer, iPad, or other device so that you can open the link and participate in the class.

Class size may be limited. As before COVID, you can sign up online, by phone, or in the shop if you are here on a shopping appointment. Class descriptions are found below and on our website. Each class will have a supply list; look for this on our website: click on “Calendar” in the blue bar at the top of the home page. Find the class on the calendar and click on that, then scroll down to the bottom left of the page to find “Supply List” and click on that.
For classes we may have in the shop, we require that you wear a mask during the class and social distance as much as possible. Each person will have their own table. We will also take your temperature when you enter the shop and ask that you use hand sanitizer or wash your hands with soap and water.

The Longarm and Pro-Stitcher Clubs will meet on the first Saturday of each month in 2021. We will continue to meet via Zoom, until such time as we can once again meet in the shop. Barbara Bean and Elyse Turkeltaub have done a great job of continuing the clubs during the COVID crisis. Thank you, ladies! Members of the clubs enjoy a 10% discount on Handi Quilter items purchased in the shop on the first weekend of each month. If you can’t make it into the shop, please call us at 301-527-0598 to make your purchase. In the shop or on the phone, be sure to tell us that you are in one or both clubs.

QUILTING CLASSES: I am scheduling classes, both via Zoom and in-store, for April, May, and June. Some are listed below. To see more of what is scheduled, go to the Calendar on our website, and look through it to see what looks interesting. Click on the name of the class for more information about that class.

For ZOOM classes, you must download the Zoom app/client, and you will need a camera/webcam, microphone, and speakers as well as an internet connection. On the day of the class, you’ll receive an email with a link to the Zoom meeting. Please confirm that Capital Quilts has your current email address and phone number.

Sew Together: Ask an Expert (via Zoom)
 Tired of sewing alone? Join fellow quilters for a virtual quilting bee. Settle into your favorite sewing space with your favorite Zoom-compatible technology for 2-1/2 hours of stitching and chatting. Everyone will have a chance to talk about what they’ve been working on and pose questions to the other quilters. No masks required! Each month, we are inviting a guest who is expert in some aspect of quilting and needlework to join us to answer questions about his or her specialty.

  May 14: SherriJoyce King immerses us in the world of Dear Jane quilts, where blocks from an 1863 sampler inspire classic and modern expression.
  June 4: Beth Morningstar, an accomplished longarm quilter, answers questions about sending quilt tops to be quilted on a longarm machine.
  July 2: Marianne Losey, one of Capital Quilts’ sewing machine technicians, provides tips to help you be your sewing machine’s best friend.
     Skill Level: any
     Instructor/Moderator: Betsy Kulamer
     Class Size: max. 18
     Cost: $8
     Time and Date: 6:30-9 on May 14, June 4, and July 2.

Flipping Out  Make this sturdy case in small (8.5” tall) or large (14.5” tall) form. It’s great for carrying pens and pencils, sewing tools, knitting needles, and more. The case stands up and holds its shape; fold down the tops to allow easy access to your tools. Mesh pockets on the inside help organize the supplies. The case zips shut for safe and secure storage.
     Skill Level: Intermediate
     Instructor: Kathy Barden
     Class Size: max. 5
     Cost: $35
     Time and Dates: 1-4, Friday, May 7

Getting Started: The Handi Quilter Longarm Learn the ins and outs of the longarm machine and the frame, how to set up for quilting a quilt, what proper tension is, and some basic quilting designs. Completion of this class is required before you will be allowed to rent time on the Amara or Moxie.
     Skill Level: Beginner
     Instructor: Barbara Bean
     Class Size: max. 5
     Cost: $35
     Time and Dates: 11-2, Saturday, May 8 

Rag Basket  Rag bowls have been made since the beginning of time, it seems. They have found some form of bowls that are wrapped into a coil in many archeological digs, that go back for centuries. In more recent history, rag bowls were made in Appalachia along with rag rugs that were known to hold up over time. Rag bowls are sturdy, versatile and fun to make. This class will provide instructions for making a small bowl and hopefully have you leaving with your bowl and all you need to make more. Be careful - it is addictive!
     Skill Level: Intermediate
     Instructor: Lois Sumser
     Class Size: max. 5
     Cost: $35
     Time and Dates: 1-4, Friday, May 14    

Featherweight Clinic  For all of you who own Singer Featherweight sewing machines, here is an opportunity to learn how to maintain it! Marianne will show you how to take the machine apart, clean and oil it, and reassemble it.
     Skill Level: Beginner
     Instructor: Marianne Losey
     Class Size: max. 5
     Cost: $30
     Time and Dates: 2-4, Saturday, May 22 


Demystifying EQ8
 (via Zoom) Learn how to design your own quilts using computer software. Import existing fabrics, make or modify blocks, resize, add borders, play with color…there is so much you can do! In this class, meant for beginners, you’ll learn the basics of how the program works and what the various buttons and functions are.

This is a ZOOM class. You must be comfortable using a computer, and you must have the EQ8 program loaded on your computer. Please contact the shop to purchase EQ8, as I do not stock them and must order one for you. Allow a couple of weeks at least. Thanks!
     Skill Level: beginner
     Instructor: Elyse Turkletaub
     Class Size: max. 6
     Cost: $45
     Time and Dates: 12-3 on Tuesday, May 18


is offered every Tuesday.  In keeping with social distancing practices, we have changed our sandwich appointments into drop-off service.  Quilt top and backing MUST be well pressed and "square". If you are using a professional or longarm quilter, you most likely do NOT need to baste your quilt! Please check with them before booking the appointment.

Sewing Machine Service is also offered as a drop-off service.  We ask that you fill out the online form and prepay the service fee before bringing us your machine.

Longarm Quilting: Capital Quilts offers longarm quilting services. Fees vary according to the size of the quilt and complexity of the design. Please call or email us if you are interested in this service.


It’s Janome’s Spring Makeover time! Receive a gift card for Home Depot with the purchase of these selected models:
• MC 15000: Receive a $300 Gift Card.
• Continental M7 Professional: Receive a $200 Gift Card.
• MC 9450: Receive a $200 Gift Card.
• MC 550E Embroidery-only machine: Receive a $200 Gift Card.
• Skyline S9: Receive a $100 Gift Card.
• AirThread 2000D: Receive a $50 Gift Card. This is the newest Janome serger, with a built-in one-push air threading system an 8-piece feed dog, and a built-in needle threader.

Contact the shop to purchase any of these machines. You will need to get a gift card form from us; don’t let us forget! You fill out the form and email it to Janome along with a copy of your receipt.

This offer is good April 1-May 31, 2021.

Artistic Digitizer Free Trial Access: Looking for something new to try? Create and embellish any project easily with this robust embroidery, sewing and crafting software! For a limited time, access this creative tool for FREE!

See the Facebook page for Janome Live events that will begin to cover Artistic Digitizer information.

See the YouTube channel for existing Artistic Digitizer tutorials featuring Anne Hein!

To take advantage of this offer, complete this form available on Janome's Sales and Promotions page. Access to this trial is only available through May 31, 2021 and registration ends May 15, 2021.

If you are already the proud owner of an Artistic Digitizer, Janome has announced an update, to version 1.6. You can download the update from the Artistic Digitizer page on

Highlight on the Janome Memory Craft 550E: Janome’s largest stand-alone embroidery machine is the perfect companion to your sewing machine. Personalizing your projects is fast and easy with the RE36b hoop that provides an embroidery field of 7.9” x 14.2”. The built-in embroidery library has 180 embroidery designs, including classic designs, floral alphabets, and Sashiko designs. The machine comes with an extra-wide extension table and 4 embroidery hoops. Other hoops, including a hat hoop, are optional. Designs are easily imported through a USB and edited through the machine’s advanced on-screen editing functions. It has 2- and 3-letter monogramming with 6 fonts to choose from, auto return post thread break, and flexible stitch traveling. Having your embroidery function separate from your sewing machine allows you to both embroider and sew at the same time.

Would you like to quilt your own quilt on the shop’s Amara or Moxie? They are available to rent. Take a one-on-one class with Carmen Sesvold for $50/hour to get certified or re-certified; you can also attend the Getting Started: The Handi Quilter Longarm class listed above. The rental fee for the machine is $20/hour. Please call me at 301-527-0598 to make arrangements for the certification. If you have been longarm quilting all during the last year at other locations and do not feel that you need to be recertified, please contact me at the same number.

Tune in to the Handi Quilter Facebook page every Tuesday at 2pm EDT for Handi Quilter’s Watch and Learn Quilting Show, which features tips, tricks, and tutorials on Handi Quilter products with limited-time special pricing and a give-away to a random live attendee. They announce a special on a different machine or accessory each week. If you can’t watch the Tuesday show, go to the HQ website and enjoy the “And I Quilt” series of videos. You can still get the special pricing on the week’s product through Sunday.

          April 27-May 2: take 15% off Needles

Longarm quilters: there is a new website you should check out! It’s and it is all quilting designs to view and purchase. The digital products include several file types and are intended for robotic quilting systems (not just Handi Quilter). There is an option to join a club and automatically receive new designs every month plus get a discount on other designs throughout the site. 

Handi Quilter has launched a new program called Pro-Stitcher Catalog. Get it through the Handi Quilter website. The program will store, organize, and give you a quick way to find your designs. Heaven on Earth! Use the code HQ1498 to get a $10 discount. You’ll also be supporting Capital Quilts, as we will then get a commission from Handi Quilter. 

Our Handi Quilter Moxie is ready for you to come try. I’ve sold one to a quilter who already owns a Fusion. She said she wants to use it for free motion quilting while the ProStitcher on her Fusion is working on another project. The Moxie is very light compared to the bigger machines and is easy to move around, with less stress to your joints.

Like the Simply Sixteen machine but don’t like the hoop frame? Get the Simply Sixteen on the Loft frame! You’ll get more quilting space and a longer frame. If you already have a Simply Sixteen and want to move up to the Loft frame, you can do that.

Also on display is the Handi Quilter Capri, a stationary, sit-down quilting machine. It is right next to the registers. This machine has the smallest footprint of the longarm machines and is most like your sewing machine in terms of feel. Rather than move the machine over the fabric as you do on the machines that have a frame, you move the fabric under the needle on the Capri. Have a seat and give it a try!


Wish Table Sale: Buy a Wish Table and get the best-selling accessories, including the Grid Glider, the Create 26” x 26” Travel Bag, and a Smart Phone Stand. The table is 22.5” x 25.5”, with beveled edges, a blue drawer for notions, holes and a tool for circle sewing, and a table lock. The Grid Glider offers all the right markings to make sewing easier and adds a slick sewing surface, especially good for free motion quilting. MSRP: $294. Capital Quilts price: $249. Offer expires June 30, 2021.

Spring Class Table Package: Buy the Large Sew Steady Table and enjoy the Table Caddie and Smart Phone Stand for just $1 more! The table is 18” x 24”. The Table Caddie keeps your favorite beverage, a pen, and a ruler easily accessible. The Smart Phone Stand offers easy viewing with your cell phone or tablet so that you can pause, rewind, and watch while sewing! MSRP: $146. Capital Quilts price: $120 plus $1.00 for extras. Offer expires June 30, 2021.

Mother’s Day Wish Package: Mother’s Day is May 9. Give the mother in your life (or maybe yourself!) a Wish they are sure to love. This Table Package includes a ready-to-start quilt project. In the Package are:
     • 22.5” x 25.5” Wish Table with blue drawer, beveled edges, circle sewing, and more
     • Tecoma Ruler Work 2pc Template Set
     • The Ranges Quilt Pattern
     • 3 Fabric Sandwiches to get you started
Tune in to the Ranges Project on Sew Steady Facebook Live every Thursday from 5-7pm EDT. All classes are recorded and accessible in the video section.

MSRP: $272. Capital Quilts price: $210.
Add a Ruler Foot for just $1 more!

Wish To Quilt Table Package: Here is everything you need to get started quilting with rulers in Sew Steady’s ultimate table package. This package includes:
     • 22.5” x 25.5” Wish Table with blue drawer, beveled edges, circle sewing, and more
     • Ruler Work Glider
     • Westalee Design 12” Arc Template
     • Westalee Design 6pc Sampler Template Set 1
     • Westalee Design 8pt. 8.5” Crosshair Square Ruler
     • Westalee Design Spacing Gauge
     • Stable Tape
     • Free University Class of Leonie West’s Creative Quilting Inspirations-Designing with the Crosshair Rulers book
     • Janet’s Ruler Quilt Design Book Online University Course (a $20 value)
     • Online Ruler Work 101 Class (a $30 value)
Total Value: $450. Capital Quilts price: $350.


Glow Ghosts from Henry Glass are super cute, AND glow in the dark! (Excepting the plaid -- that's just fun!) $12.99 per yard.

More loveliness from Island Batiks has arrived!  $13.99 per yard.

EPPers: we have new items!  "Polar Stars" includes pattern, paper pieces, 3 acrylic templates with 3/8" seam allowances, a fat quarter pack, and a Yazzii oval sewing box for just $94.99.

Walkabout the Stars is bright and colorful quilt is perfect with the "Walkabout" fat quarter pack by Sherri & Chelsi! Stars and Squares stitch together quickly in this project. Blend in scraps to sweeten the combination of fabrics.  Includes a FREE Splash Rotary Cutter! $60.99.

Tessa Rae Williams's "Flowerful" EPP design is the perfect project for when you are ready to move beyond basic shapes. Pattern and Paper Pieces for making nine blocks, plus four yards of fabric and a variety of threads are included in this value bundle. Find whimsical motifs perfect for fussy cutting in the Far Far Away II Fat Quarter Bundle by Heather Ross, and coordinate your thread with your fabric color for perfectly hidden stitches. $89.99.

Thanks to those who have donated kennel quilts in the last few weeks! Keep them coming.  If you are willing to help, please make more for us! Find the directions here. Please be careful of the dimensions of the little quilts; too big or too small and we can’t send them. 

We have both pillowcase and kennel quilt kits available, free. Make them at home and return the completed project to us for distribution.

The CQ Blue Bag Bonanza is back!  April’s prize is a 40-strip strip set of Carolyn Friedlander’s “Instead” collection, from Robert Kaufman. The fabrics are a beautiful group of blues, purples, grays, and coppery browns.

To be entered in each month’s drawing, bring your Capital Quilts Blue Bag with you when you shop. Make sure you show it to the staffer at the register! Upon completion of your sales transaction, your name will be put in the jar for the drawing at the end of the month. The more you shop, the more chances you have to win. Don’t have a Blue Bag? Purchase one at the shop, by phone, or online for just $4.99. We save all of the entries for the year, and at the end of the year we draw a Grand Prize Winner from all the entries.

Our thanks to everybody who shops at Capital Quilts and who participates in the Blue Bag Bonanza.

 Click to visit the
Capital Quilts website

Monday-Saturday, 11-5
Sunday 12-5


  • Tel: 301-527-0598
  • 15926 Luanne Drive
  • Gaithersburg, MD 20877