"I see retirement as just another of these reinventions, another chance to do new things and be a new version of myself." Walt Mossberg
There comes a time in the life of every quilt shop and quilt shop owner that change and evolution are necessary. Capital Quilts and I have now arrived at that point. I have retired, and Marianne Losey is now the proud owner of Capital Quilts.
The last nine years have been joyful, sometimes hard, sometimes scary, and always a time of learning and growth for me. When I began, I knew nothing of business or how to manage people other than my children (who by then were quite able to manage themselves). I only knew that I couldn’t imagine a world without Capital Quilts in it. I happened to be out to dinner with a bunch of my girlfriends and was talking about the shop, and they all encouraged me to buy it, told me I would learn as I went along, and that in fact is what has happened. I went to the library and got out books on management, watched videos, took seminars on business at Quilt Market, and experienced a lot of on-the-job training. I learned from and leaned on my staff, all of whom had something to teach me and were always supportive. All of the staff have been fabulous, many of them going above and beyond their stated duties to make Capital Quilts the shop you love. I need to give a special shout out to Kat here, without whom I could never have made a success of Capital Quilts. Her knowledge of retail business and social media is deep and wide, and she has gently given her advice and guidance and been a friend to both me and the shop.
The shop, too, has grown and changed over the last nine years. I have worked hard to make it the friendly, fun, inspiring place it is today. Thanks to your support, it survived a pandemic. The pandemic year also caused a sea-change for Capital Quilts: namely, online shopping. We had to evolve fast to enable us to reach out to you, our customers, and give you the ability to still get what you needed to make masks, quilts, and all the other projects you worked on during Covid time. Now, Capital Quilts must continue to evolve in this new online world, and Marianne is the perfect person to lead Capital Quilts into this future. You will be hearing more from her about her ideas and dreams, and I hope you will give her your attention and support as you have done for me over the years.
So, from the bottom of my heart, thank you. I’ve loved getting to know you, tried really hard with more or less success to remember your name when I saw you, watched you grow along your own journeys, and wish you nothing but joy and happiness in the days ahead.
Going home to Piece,
|Dia De Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) Challenge
||It seems we 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 are now open to all shoppers from 11-5 Monday through Saturday, and 12-5 on Sunday. If you are more comfortable being the only shopper in the store, please give us a call at 301-527-0598 and we will do our best to accommodate you, generally before 11 weekdays.
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.
Sandwiching: Sandwiching services (spray basting or pin basting) are offered weekly on Tuesdays. Click here for more information.
Scissors, Knife, and Garden Tool Sharpening: Rod's Sharpening Service will be here on 8/17 and 11/2 this year. For everyone's safety, all items must be packaged/wrapped securely with rubber bands or packing tape securing the item in a towel, pillowcase, padded envelope, or box. Attach your name, address, phone number, and cash or check payable to Rod's Sharpening Service. Pricing is $7 for most scissors, knives, and Garden tools. Beauty shears are $25. Items should be dropped off at the shop no later than 5pm on the day preceding the sharpening day.
Classroom Rental: Our classroom is available for your small group! At this time, we ask that groups be limited to six, to allow for social distancing. The classroom has six tables, an iron and ironing board, a cutting table, and three design walls for you to use. $25/hour.
Longarm Rentals: Our Amara and our Moxie are both available for rental, once you've taken an introductory class. $20/hour.
Longarm Quilting: Capital Quilts offers both edge-to-edge and custom longarm quilting services. Fees may vary according to the size of the quilt and complexity of the design. Edge-to-edge quilting: begins at $0.025 per square inch, and custom quilting begins at $0.05 per square inch. There is a $60 minimum fee for any quilting project.
Machine Lessons: All Janome sewing machines purchased at Capital Quilts come with a free owners class, and we also offer owner's classes for those of you who purchased your machine elsewhere. Paid lessons are one-on-one with our machine expert Barbara, and cost $53/hour.
Machine Servicing: We have two Janome-trained technicians to work on your machine! While all brands are accepted, non-Janome machines may take longer if parts are needed. Basic maintenance starts at $100, and machines are worked on in a first come, first served basis.
Be sure to walk through our Gallery when you are here. The quilts of Karen Kehl are now on display. Karen is a local mother, designer whose grandmother got her started in quilting as soon as she was old enough to sort fabric. As a teen, she made and sold miniature quilts for dollhouses. Recently, her quilt titled Ante Meridiem 6.18.81 was juried into QuiltCon 2021. She will be teaching the “Tree of Life” class starting this coming Sunday. See “Classes” below.
CLASSES and CLUBS
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 may 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.
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
Time and Date: 6:30-9 on June 4 and July 2.
Learn to Sew: The Basics
So you’d like to learn how to sew, but where to begin? We can help you with that! In this class, get to know your sewing machine: how it works, its parts, how to thread it, how to wind the bobbin. Learn about fabric: selvedges, straight of grain, right and wrong side, how to pin it. Practice sewing a straight seam and a curved seam. Learn how to press your seam. Find out how to “unsew” with your seam ripper. Make a pillowcase to take home with you!
Skill Level: beginner
Instructor: Lora Houck
Class Size: max. 5
Date and Time: 1-4pm on Saturday, June 5
NEW! Tree of Life This two-session class will teach you skills for raw edge applique, double mitered borders, and flanged bindings. It is a great class for confident beginners to learn new skills or for experienced quilters to explore new approaches on a quick and fun tree of life wall hanging. At the end of the two classes, the top of the wall hanging will be finished and you can quilt and bind it with techniques learned in class. Kits are available!
Skill Level: Confident beginner
Instructor: Karen Kehl (designer of the quilt)
Class Size: max. 5
Date and Time: Sundays, June 6 & 13, 1:30-3:30
Getting Started: the Handi Quilter Longarm Machine Learn about the longarm machine and the frame, how to set up for quilting a quilt, what proper tension is, and some basic quilting designs. This is a required class for those wishing to rent Capital Quilts’ longarm machine.
Skill Level: beginner longarm quilter
Instructor: Barbara Bean
Class Size: max. 4
Date and Time: Thursday, June 10 or Saturday, June 26, 11-2
NEW! Designing the Hexagon English Paper Piecing (EPP) is a portable handwork technique relying on thread basting and hand sewing. Learn how to create your own stunning, kaleidoscopic quilt design and stitch it completely by hand using traditional EPP techniques. We will look at various ways to break up and recombine hexagonal forms (subdividing a hexagon with “jewels”, triangles, and rhombuses). We’ll discuss the impact of scale and color selection and the effect of fussy cutting. By the end of class, you will be well on your way to creating a paper-pieced hexagonal motif suitable for hand or machine applique to a range of items, such as pillows, bags, and placemats. You will have the basic skills needed to tackle commercial patterns for EPP and know the key considerations to create your own designs.
Skill Level: Beginner
Instructor: Samantha Reizes
Class Size: max. 5
Date and Time: Saturday, June 12, 1-3:30
Rag Basket “Rag Basket” may be a misleading name for these lovely bowls! Make your bowl with clothesline wrapped with strips of fabric. Learn how to finish off with a fancy handle and add embellishments. Get tips for shaping the bowl. This is a super fun class, one of our most popular pre-Covid classes. Come have a good time in the shop on a Friday afternoon!
Skill Level: intermediate
Instructor: Lois Sumser
Class Size: max. 5
Date and Time: Saturday, June 19, 1-4
Dazzle Dazzle your friends and family with this starry table runner. Use red, white, and blue for a Fourth of July table runner, holiday fabrics for later in the year, or just pretty fabrics for any time of year. The runner is 16” x 38”.
Skill Level: Confident beginner
Instructor: Cathy Sullivan
Class Size: max. 5
Date and Time: Wednesday, June 30, 1-4
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
Time and Dates: 12-3 on Friday, June 18
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 Janome.com.
Highlight on the Janome Skyline S3:
The Skyline S3 includes everything you need to make sewing easier and more enjoyable; it comes with 120 built-in stitches, including 7 one-step buttonholes and 1 alphabet. The stitch quality of the Skyline S3 is excellent and is able to speed up to 820 stitches per minute in a smooth and peaceful operation. Navigation through all of these choices is simple using the backlit LCD screen.
Janome’s Superior Feed System Plus features a 7-piece feed dog to ensure that even the thickest, multi-layer projects are able to move under the needle with precision and ease. The Skyline S3’s patented needle placement accuracy includes special plate markings that indicate needle drop position, provide angle marks and act as front-of-the-foot guides. In addition, the needle can be moved into 71 unique positions in order to get pinpoint accuracy for decorative stitching, applique and free motion quilting.
Handi Quilter’s June promotion is “Rulers Rule!”. From June 11-21, receive a bundle of rulers with the purchase of any Handi Quilter new machine package. See the flyer at the end of this newsletter.
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. 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.
• Through June 6, receive 15% off the Micro Foot.
Longarm quilters: there is a new website you should check out! It’s www.quiltable.com 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 fully functional and 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: 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.
NEW AND NOTEWORTHY
The warmer tones of Whimsy have arrived from P&B. These delightful blenders have a color for just about any project! $11.50 per yard; 25 FQ Bundle, $93.75.
We have a limited number of "On the Tide" crabby quilt kits available. Kit contains pattern by Marsha Evans Moore and all fabric needed for 52-1/2" x 68-1/2" quilt tip and binding. $79.99 each.
Seven fat quarters and a bit of yardage makes Geese Across the Table easy to select fabric for. It's a great pattern for any seasonal color scheme or to showcase bold prints. $9.00 each.
Effervescence is another fat quarter friendly quilt pattern, and comes with directions for multiple size options, and is ideal for showcasing large scale, directional, or novelty fabrics. Use the suggested Creative Grids Folded Corner Clipper or your favorite HST trimming tool for construction. $10.00 each.
CAPITAL QUILTS CARES
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.
BLUE BAG BONANZA
The CQ Blue Bag Bonanza is back! June’s prize is a 20 Fat Quarter “Patriotic” Bundle from Michael Miller Fabrics.
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.