Skip Navigation Website Accessibility

About Us   |   Contact Us   |   View Cart


Alison and Pete Zacharkiw, Owners

Alison and Pete bought Capital Quilts April 1, 2012.

Alison is a long-time sewer and knitter and began quilting in 1999 when her youngest daughter’s fifth grade class needed to come up with a quilt for the school auction and none of the other moms would take on the challenge! While the kids designed their blocks, she frantically read up on how to make a quilt. In the end, the quilt was a big success, and Alison had so much fun doing it she continued making quilts. She joined the Capital Quilts crew in 2006.

Pete is a mechanical and systems engineer by training and a born entrepreneur. In 1983 he, with some help from Alison, started a computer business in their basement. The company was called Bohdan, and ten years later it was the #1 Compac dealer in the nation, with offices in four states and over 250 employees. He is currently starting up a new energy efficiency company called Cenergetix. Pete loves working with his hands and has done home renovations and furniture building; he has been instrumental in the renovations of the shop.

They have three children, all of them grown. Megan is assistant executive manager for Sofitel Hotels in Singapore. David is the Craft Beer Buyer for Total Wine and More and lives in the District. Katie is in Seattle getting her masters degree in digital marketing.

Barbara Kascic, Machine Department

Likes – Working with the fabrics and likes our customers
Teaches – Make Friends With Your Serger
Sewing – Since 7th grade
Sews By – Machine
Started Sewing – With the help of my Mother
Favorite Tool – 6-inch ruler
When I Go To Heaven – My daughter will give my stash to friends
Barbara Bean

"My very first quilt was a log cabin quilt that I quilted at Stretch & Sew in the early 80's -- yes, you heard correctly -- Stretch & Sew. I still have the book, "Log Cabin Quilt in a Day" by a very young Eleanor Burns. Mine took several years! Did I mention I'm a bit of a procrastinator?

Capital Quilts became my favorite place to shop sometime in 2002 or 2003. I signed up for the Complete Course with Annette and Susan. I had just lost my dog Kayla and the quilting became therapeutic for me. During the Complete Course series, I signed up for just about every class I could to learn more about this wonderful new hobby. I was hooked! A couple of years later I purchased the Pfaff Grand Quilter on a 10 foot frame. A couple of years later I purchased my Handi Quilter Avante, and a couple of years after that I began quilting for others.

When I retired from Montgomery College in December, 2012, I kept busy quilting for myself and others and the Friendship Star Quilt Guild where I am the Newsletter Editor and Web Mistress. I also started running the "Longarm Club" at Capital Quilts which meets monthly.

In December 2013, I began working part time at Capital Quilts -- just in time for inventory -- woo hoo!! For the first few months I worked pretty much on the floor, but then I took over the Longarm Certification Classes and the Longarm Rentals. It gives me great pleasure helping others finish their quilts on the longarm machine.

As much as I love quilting, what gives me the most pleasure is hanging out with my granddaughter, Sarah."
Annette Burns

I began quilting in 1981 while I was pregnant with my daughter. A crafter/sewer from childhood, after making that first quilt, I emptied my sewing room of all things "non-quilting" and refilled it with "quilty" tools and fabric. I started working at Capital Quilts in 1998.

One of the best things about working at Capital Quilts is helping customers choose fabrics for a quilt. Once we have selected the pattern and fabrics, I feel as though that's one quilt I don't have to make! It becomes part of my "virtual quilt collection". I also really enjoy my teaching time at CQ. I teach a variety of classes, but most notably, The Complete Course which is a 10 session class beginning with fabric selection and rotary cutting and finishing with binding, labeling and care. The class was originally designed for newbies but I get lots of people who have been quilting for a while and want to strengthen their skills. It's lots of fun and hard work. Many of the class groups, having shared ups and downs for 10 weeks go on to have small groups when we are finished.

My personal philosophy regarding quiltmaking is based upon some of the following tenets: Finishing is overrated!....Don't get talked into making quilts for friends/loved-ones who have no appreciation for the effort involved....Once you have disregarded the prior, don't allow said friend/loved-one to choose the pattern or fabric....Buy that great fabric when you see it.....Fabric collecting, pattern collecting and book collecting are BONA FIDE hobbies."
Mary Lou Dungan

"I started quilting in 1998 after taking a quilting/Bible Study with a friend. My daughter, Christina, worked at Capital Quilts while she was in high school.  After she moved on, I was hired in late 2006. In 2010 I remarried (which I swore I would never do, but am totally delighted that I did) and gave up my work at CQ until 2012 when I retired from my full time job. In addition to fondling fabric to my heart's delight, I enjoy talking with all the customers and co-workers about our mutual love of quilting. There is always something new to learn, which can be challenging and exciting; even a little scary, but Capital Quilts is a fun and happy place to spend a few hours every week. There are always beautiful new fabrics to charm you and plenty of temptation for a fabric addict."
Nina Graves

Nina's mother and grandmother taught her many needlework skills and are the inspiration for much of her work. She favors patterns with curves of any kind, and her favorite tool is the simple self-threading needle. She uses it to bury threads and could not live without it. Nina is also a proponent of having the right sized ruler for the task at hand.

Although Nina officially retired in July 2014, she can still occasionally be found helping out at the shop if we're in a tight spot.
Gail Fredricks

I am a relatively new member of the Capital Quilts family, however, NOT new to sewing & quilting which I have loved since I was a pre-schooler! My first ‘sewing’ experience was scotch-taping Barbie doll clothes together (as I was way too young to hand-stitch or even staple)! I eventually ‘graduated’ when my Mom taught me to sew on my great-grandmother’s treadle Singer sewing machine & the rest is history. My entire life has included sewing at many levels – clothing, home dec & especially quilting & it has served me well at a personal, cottage-industry, teaching & retail level. My mantra is the old cliché, ‘the one who dies with the most fabrics, wins’…I challenge you to develop a stash larger than mine & I doubt you will be able to do so---but, what fun you will have trying ! I look forward to creating with you at Capital Quilts!
Beth Morningstar
Erika Osborn

Erika has been working at Capital Quilts since about 2007, though she did take some time off to help care for her twin grandsons. Her favorite projects are kids’ quilts, and also quilts that use 2 ½” strips. It’s no surprise, then, that she has taught the Snuggly Flannel Quilt, and also Tea Time in Bali.
Carol Pacini

"I started working at Capital Quilts in September, 2011. During one of his hotdog-grilling events at the front of the shop, Gary suggested that I come to work for him and Susan, and I agreed. Six months later Alison and Pete became the new owners and kept me on. I'll always be grateful.

My first memory of sewing was when my great-grandmother showed me how to make a 9-patch block; I must have been in grade school. I sewed some squares right sides together and some squares wrong sides together. She laughed at me and my feelings were hurt. Such a sensitive child. I don't think I tried sewing again until junior high; I learned to use my mother's sewing machine and started making clothes to wear to school. I continued making clothes and craft projects and learned to cross-stitch. My interest in and love of quilts was most influenced by the wonderful woman who became my mother-in-law; she was always making a pillow or quilt for a gift, using cardboard templates, piecing and quilting by hand. My sister gave me my first rotary cutter and acrylic ruler and I started machine-piecing my own blocks and making quilt tops. My favorite tool is my 6" x 12" ruler. So many quilt tops, so few finished quilts! I love the look of hand-quilting, but it takes longer to do. My goal is to become more comfortable with machine quilting so that my stack of quilt tops becomes smaller while my pitifully small stack of completed quilts grows taller. Wish me luck."

Laurie Sieminski

Laurie prefers to work by hand, both for piecing and for quilting. With more than 30 years of quilting experience, she started by making baby quilts for nieces and nephews, then got serious about it after the birth of her first child. When her son was 5, he once answered the phone by saying,“Do you want to talk to my Dad, or is this a question about quilting?” With three years off while she lived in London, she's been at Capital Quilts for more than 10 years. She likes to draft her own blocks, and hand-piece complex designs. Favorite tools include the 12-inch see-through plastic ruler for hand piecing seam allowances, and the Clover needle threader. Laurie loves to help customers solve their quilting problems. Laurie has worked with Project Linus for years, and currently heads up Capital Quilts Cares, our community service program.

Julie Taylor


  • Daily 10 AM - 6 PM
  • Fridays until 9 PM
  • Sundays 12 PM - 5 PM
  • *Also open until 9 PM when evening classes are in session -- call to confirm


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