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Pattern Designer and Graphics Designer CALL OUT!

  Let’s make this fast!  We are seeking  to develop a large stable of  quality pattern designers as well as those who do graphics and  graphic design  work that are looking for more work, more pay and  lots of creative input while being part of this very quick moving quilting  industry! Lots more details to follow and I am not quite sure how it all going to shake out but if you have even an inkling that you might be interested then drop your name, a bit about yourself and your experience including what you like to design ( Paper piecing, applique etc, use photoshop, eq 7..whatevers ) to me at and put in the subject line    – Designer at large.   What you can expect back from me in about a week is a letter telling you what I have going on and at that time you can ask a whole bunch of questions and then decide if the opportunity is right for you! Yes, you can share this post Yes this is pretty rough and just born Let’s do something amazing... read more

Breakfast with Paula Reid – Quilting Superstar

  Ever had one of those things that just keeps getting better and better? Well I have to say that I am totally feeling that way about having Paula Reid here in town for our Fluff and Stuff Mini Retreat this October. With more than 1400 quilts to her credit Paula is a master of making  hard quilting look easy and the impossible, achievable.. and all on a domestic sewing machine! The 2 day event is going to be amazing but not everyone has the time in their schedule or the change in their pocket for a two day event of this magnitude but if you have enough money for breakfast including a cup of coffee ( or tea) then you can have Breakfast with Paula Reid and get to know this icon of quilting glory in a cozy low pressure setting. See the new quilting products she has come up with and just hang with this very special lady while you enjoy a breakfast made by the very good people of Granfaloon Cafe on Main Street. Breakfast is  October 9th from  9-10 am and you can buy your tickets through this link or at SPOOL now through October 7th.  Do note that there will be limited number of early bird tickets and  seats for breakfast are limited but ARE open to the public as well as to those who will be attending the retreat! Each person attending the breakfast will get a breakfast and beverage pass as well as a gift for attending. Click here to join the fun!... read more

Big Quilts with Small Machines

One of the things I hear every week is that people send out their quilts to be quilted since they “only have a small machine” well the truth is that even small machines can do big things. Now mind you if you just don’t like quilting, then for heaven’s sake don’t do it but if you have been avoiding quilting a larger quilt because you have been told it is impossible to do well on a small machine – well let’s just put that fallacy to bed right now. Many multiply award winning quilters have made stunning quilts on little more than a domestic sewing machine and you can too- with the right education. We are very excited to be hosting Paula Reid of Bats in the Attic this October at SPOOL for a 2 day mini retreat that will have everyone finishing their own big quilts with both conventional and free motion stitching before our time together is over. Even more exciting is that we are going big and will spending out two days at Granfaloon Chattanooga’s hottest new cafe/bistro/event space on Main Street!   Big windows, cool atmosphere, amazing food, snacks and coffee and two days of learning all the tips and tricks to quilting your big quilt on a domestic sewing machine.             Want in on the action? Click here to register  Paula Reid Fluff and Stuff Event at SPOOL (early bird tickets going fast!) Want come in and want a cool place to stay close to the the event site and SPOOL – We suggest The Crash Pad!     A... read more

Game of Quilts Online Competition

   Loading InLinkz ...  PLEASE NOTE – the due date to turn in quilts to the live show at SPOOL has been extended to September 9th. All QUILTS  must be into the shop by that time.  Need tickets to the live showing?…. Get them here!  <–click   To upload your quilt photo for the online showing – click on the blue box just above here and to the left to add your photo link.  If you are confused about what to do check out this great tutorial from the Inlinkz people themselves on How to Link   VOTING opens on the 16th. To vote for the quilt you like the most and want to win click on the upper corner of the photo where indicated – it is just that easy! But remember…. only 1 vote per person but that does not mean you can’t send this page to everyone you know and have them vote for... read more

Screen Printing with Thermofax

  Happy Monday everyone! I am tickled all the shades of the rainbow today to be part of Lynn Krawczyk’s blog hop for her new video!  Honestly to say it is just a video sells this one short. This is a class in a box. A class you can watch over and over again as you try out all the ideas and techniques that Lynn shares with you. By the time you are done you will understand the beauty of why thermofax makes for fast and easy screen printing that frees you up from all the bulky and messy (and expensive) parts of traditional screen printing. Lynn sent me two great screens to play with and I used fabric paint that I had on hand.  Since I have a large project going on in my sewing room I decided to clear some room in the kitchen to work.   I covered the counter with a piece of batting and then my secret weapon for fast clean up – yes Glad Preen’nSeal!  I LOVE this stuff. It holds in place just about anywhere and as I change colors I just lay down more layers of it to keep cross paint contact to a minimum! While there are lots of add ons you can get for screen printing with thermofax you can also just use a simple foam brush to get started making this an affordable way to dip your toe in the world of screen printing! A simple swipe of the paint across the screen and you are printing! With time you will learn how much pressure to use but... read more

BadAss At Business – Playing the Long Game for a Change in Attitude.

BadAss at business is where I yammer on about the business side of the quilting and retail life. National quilt shows, Row by Row, and local guild events, oh my!  You don’t have to look far these days to find some sort of sewing or quilting related event. Each of these events offers opportunities to vend, sponsor, or in other ways become part of the action, and of course this all comes at a cost. The Situation The average quilting customer has little idea of the costs shops incur to be part of these events, let alone the angst-ridden weighing of choices about what to participate in, when, and where. These events take money, manpower, and a certain amount of risk, but with the right mindset they are part of a solid long game to the shops that take on them on. The Background Currently, we at SPOOL don’t vend at any shows due to our size and family obligations, but on the horizon we will and it will center around BadAss Quilter merchandise and our awesome BAQS members. Where we DO put our attention is sponsoring a good number of local events, both quilting related and not, as well as taking part in Row by Row Experience. The BIG Issue – Money Money Money Being part of even a local small- to mid-sized guild show can be a serious expense for many shops. Of course each is entered into with the hope of big $ales, yet often these dreams are dashed on the quilting rocks.  As the 2-3-4 days of the show go by, the shop owner/ staff  become... read more

It is All About the ROW – BadAss at Business Talks about Row By Row

  BadAss at Business is a  subsect of posts dedicated to those who are taking their quilting and sewing related business to the next level. From big shop to fledgling designer we are all always learning.  ************************************** So, unless you have been under a rock for the past year I bet you know at least a little bit about Row by Row Experience and the way it has changed the landscape of the quilting world. From consumers to shop owners this event has put a spin on quilting and collecting that has not been seen before this point in the sewing industry. RXR has rewritten the rules about hops can be run and how the consumer can participate and with that there is an opportunity for shop owners to really up their game and bring people streaming to their door and what it takes is an AMAZING ROW. The Experience is not called Row by Row for nothing and the best thing any shop can do to bring people into their shop for this event is to create a kickass row that attracts people from far and wide.  For a beautiful row customers will drive 1-2 hours out of their way for the chance to get the pattern or buy the kit. What it takes – Row Design Consumers have quickly wised up and are perfectly happy to collect only the rows that intrigue them, are well designed, displayed and well photographed.  Poor design or execution of design is crucial in this digital age where rows are judged on the computer screen before the customer even gets to the... read more

Does Your Fabric Spark Joy? – Kondoizing your Fabric Stash

  I love fabric, but I don’t love all fabric, and in fact there is fabric that I once loved that I don’t really care for anymore. Like many I hold onto old fabric  for various reasons none of which make  enough sense to fill a tiny teacup most of the time. In fact most of them are rooted in guilt. Guilt over spending money, or making bad choices or not getting done what I planned when I planned.  The energy this brings with it is negative and not inspirational in the least for me. Of course there are others who collect fabric enough to fill rooms and each piece brings them joy. For them they feel a sense of peace from having such an amazing collection. I am not one of them which some would find ironic since I own a fabric store with hundreds of bolts of amazing fabric The truth is that in the last 2 years I have brought no more than 5 total yards home for myself/ stash and a few of the yards I even took back due to a customer wanting them and I had not yet used them so why not make someone else happy when for me it just feels like weight. Both emotional and physical. The Plan I am getting ready to once again go through  my fabrics looking for  that~ Spark Joy~ and the rest will be finding their way into scrap bundles and new homes. Some of the fabrics in my stash date back 20+ years… and it is time to let them go. The phrase ~ Spark... read more
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