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Wednesday, October 4, 2017

The First of Octember

Try to Remember the First of Octember was a Theo LeSieg book we used to read to our kids when they were small.  It's a fun story about an imaginary month full of promises of fun.  The name has always stuck with me.  This fall is speeding by and with September finished and October under way the name "Octember" seems to fit. 

Our first Mini-Retreat was a huge success.  We had a full classroom with many wonderful projects being sewn up.  Here is a (not the best) photo of Bonnie and Betty's Canada 150 top.  The colours were so rich and beautiful.  And it was neat that it wasn't the standard red and white quilts we've been seeing.

 We will be having more Mini-Retreats after Christmas.  With the quilt show in October, our big Shekinah retreat in November (which is now full) and Christmas in December we couldn't squeeze in another Mini-Retreat.  We do have our Quilt 'til you Wilts though so we'd love to have you join us for those.

And speaking of October, our latest pincushion of the month is now available.  A super cute little pumpkin!
And we are making preparations for the Saskatoon Quilters' Guild Quilt Show which will take place at Prairieland Park October 27th and 28th.  There is a great FB page Saskatoonquilts which shares some "sneak peeks" about the show.   Periwinkle Quilting is also the proud sponsor of the Trunk Show being held Saturday morning just before show opening at 9:00am.  The guest presenter is Elinor Burwash.  Information about Elinor can be found on the Saskatoonquilts FB page May 17 post.   Periwinkle will have a booth at the show and will be doing demos Friday at 5:30 and Saturday at 12:30 using the Westalee rulers.  And we will have a special coupon that show attendees can take back to our shop for fun, refreshments and good deals.
Outside of show preparations we continue with our Saturday Surprise Sampler blocks.  Blocks 1 and 2 are available with Block 3 available on the 14th of October. 

We've got the next few blocks planned and done up and we are very pleased with how they all play well together.  This is going to be a fun and happy quilt top.

As ever we are always getting new fabrics and patterns in the shop.  Feel free to stop by and check things out.  We're always happy to see you.





Monday, September 11, 2017

September 11, 2017

September is Upon Us

Again, I don't know where the time goes.  September has appeared.  The days are getting noticeably shorter - I have to turn the light on in my sewing room in the evening - and the nights are cooling off which is a welcome change for those of us that like to sleep in cooler temperatures.

This summer was glorious and warm.  And our warmer than usual summer precipitated a complete crash of our air conditioning system at the shop though.  That occurred early in July.  Unfortunately, through one thing or another (and I'm blaming our landlord here) we didn't get the air conditioning operating until the end of August!  During the interim, let's call it the "Summer of Quilting With a Glow", we kept the shop doors open and the fans running.  We had a few adventures including a pair of homeless 13-stripe ground squirrels who thought the shop had great potential.  I couldn't fault their choice in accommodations but they were rounded up and herded back out the door! 

 
Here is the crane before it lifted the new condensing unit onto our roof.
 
We also had SaskEnergy replacing the old gas line to the building which meant a lot of noise and now a lovely gravel pad right beside our back door.  It is due to be paved this fall but as with all things city driven it may or may not happen before the snow flies.

Needless to say we are happy to see Autumn and the return of regular schedules and all things quilty!

And with Fall comes new programming at Periwinkle.  We have our class list up on our new website.  (www.periwinkle.biz)  There is a calendar as well so that you can see at a glance what is happening each month.  We have several new classes and some old favourites that never seem to lose their popularity too.
Ruler quilting is one of the new classes.  The above photo shows one of the Westalee ruler templates under my sewing machine.  Much fun with many uses and options for quilting designs.   We have Project classes and Technique classes and we have some more social type classes that are filling up quickly. 

We've also made up some more kits.  Jennifer did up a super cute pattern/kit using the Merrily line of fabrics.  It's proving to be very popular.  See photo below:





And we have the September installment of our Pincushion of the Month.  It's a simple and very handy low profile pincushion that snugs up again the base of your sewing machine.  Done up in Autumn colours it will keep your pins handy but stay out of the way of your project.  Here it is:




And finally we have the return of our Saturday Surprise Sampler.  We're calling it Hi/Lo and it will be bright cheerful fabrics on low volume backgrounds.  The patterns are all new and Jen and I are having a lot of fun planning and designing them!  Our first block came out this past Saturday:




We are trying to keep the first few relatively simple so as not to scare anyone away! ;)    And never fear!  You can always join us for an evening of  quilting (bring your own projects or your SSS blocks) and we can chat and sew and share our love of quilting.

We are looking ahead to the coming months and are excited for the upcoming Quilt Show being put on by the Saskatoon Quilters' Guild, Oct 27 and 28th.  Our own retreat at Shekinah is coming up November 17, 18 and 19th - I'm already plotting and scheming for activities and goodies for it!  And we will have a few smaller events at the shop in between all of these bigger ones. 

So stay tuned!  And as always, happy sewing!

Patti











Tuesday, August 8, 2017

How can it be August?!

I'm not sure what happened but all of a sudden it's August! 

Actually I know what happened.  I've been wrapped up in planning for Fall classes and activities at Periwinkle.  It's been lots of fun but has required lots of time and organization.   My hat is off to people that set schedules for a living!

So our September at the shop is looking like this:




In addition to old favourites we've added new classes and we are introducing a few series sewing classes like the Stashbusters group and the Bonnie Hunter Support Group (Quiltville-ians will understand this).  We are also bringing back the Quilt 'til you Wilt evenings and trying out a Mini-Retreat weekend for some fun and sewing with fellow quilters.  All of the classes and calendar pages can be found on our website: www.periwinkle.biz 







Another favourite we are bringing back are the Saturday Surprise Sampler blocks.  The theme this year is called "Hi/Lo".  We will have all new block patterns with bright fabrics set on low volume backgrounds.  The blocks will will be suitable for both modern and traditional quilt tops. We will begin the second Saturday in September.  Blocks will be available the second and fourth Saturday of each month through to June 2018.  As well, if you sign up and pay for the entire 20 blocks you will get your first block free.  Prices are $6.95 for pick-up in store and $7.95 for blocks that are mailed out.

This image is from "I'm Feeling Crafty".  It gives you a general idea of our plan and colour scheme:
Our blocks will vary in pattern and skill level so they will appeal to a wide variety of quilters.

In addition to the Fall scheduling, I've also re-vamped the Periwinkle website.  It now has a clean, more contemporary feel and it will allow us to add an online shopping component.  We have many customers who do not live in the city and we are hoping the online shop will allow us to better serve their quilting needs.  We are currently working on the online shop and getting it ready with kits and fabrics etc.  I'll make a separate post via Instagram, Facebook and email once it's up and running.


Needless to say there is lots happening at Periwinkle and we couldn't be happier.  Along with the Saskatoon Quilters' Guild Biennial Show October 27 and 28 and our quilting retreat at Shekinah November 17, 18 and 19 these next few months will be full of quilty fun.

So keep watch on Instagram, Facebook, this blog and the occasional email for updates and news of the "goings on" at Periwinkle.




Thursday, June 8, 2017

Recharged

We all have busy lives.  Trying to get things done and find a balance between work, family and play.  With all that's going on in the world I'm glad there is quilting to centre my mind.  And there is also the ability to unplug, disconnect and escape for a while.  I took some time out to visit one of my sisters (I have 3 - and a twin brother!) in Kelowna.  It was the perfect thing to do. 

We walked a lot of trails.  Many of them were repurposed rail beds that are now groomed and go for many kilometres.  One of them runs 80K from Kelowna to Penticton and my brother in-law and nephew have it on their cycling to do list.  This particular photo was taken on the Penticton end of this trail.  So many vineyards, apple orchards, cherry orchards and even the occasional lavender farm in and around Kelowna!


We traveled to Vernon to visit a grassland sanctuary.  It was an old weather station that had been converted to a sanctuary where the public can walk and learn about the native plant species and even watch the marmots as they sit on their rock pile.  They also had a live bee hive which was visible behind glass.  We were able to watch them working so hard at keeping things going in the hive.  Because the vineyards need bees to help with grape growing there are many places that have hives and they are concerned and very serious about preserving the bees which have been declining in population.

Interestingly they also had the beginnings of a tiny house being built which they plan to raffle off as a fundraiser.

My tour in and around Kelowna included an apple orchard with the neatest shops.  A bee apiary which sold meads in addition to honey and honey byproducts.  We also visited an historic farm with the most amazing house.  There was even a quilt shop with ready made quilts and quilted items at this farm. I was momentarily distracted by half a dozen Necessary Clutch wallets until I remembered I had the pattern and better get on it!

We also stopped at a few quilt shops.  One in Vernon, two in Kelowna, one in Summerland (which was fantastic!) and one in Penticton.  My sister isn't a quilter so she deserves huge props for not only driving me around but putting up with me as I spent time dreaming of and choosing fabrics in each shop.

Of course we visited a couple of wineries.  Summerhill is just at the bottom of the hill from where my sister lives.  And we stopped at Missionhill.  I'm allergic to most wines so I didn't go crazy with wine tastings but I did manage to purchase a package of amazing dark chocolate cherries!

Okanagan Lake is experiencing the highest water levels it has ever had.  Consequently all of the beaches are closed and quite honestly non-existent.  Washed away by the high water level.  The homes and businesses along the lake are all sandbagged and praying they avoid water damage.  The next photo gives you a bit of an idea of how it is.

My final day was spent at the top of a mountain biking on yet another repurposed train bed.  It was absolute fun!  11 trestle bridges - we did 8 because I had to be at the airport in the afternoon - and 2 tunnels. 
And so I return home refreshed and recharged and ready to continue on with my life as wife, mother and shop owner.  I hope all of you will get the chance to enjoy some time away from the everyday this summer.  Happy quilting!

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Giving Back in Small Ways

Being a quilter presents itself with all kinds of opportunities.  Today I'm happy to blog about Periwinkle's opportunity to support a very worthwhile organization called Days for Girls.  I discovered this group accidentally when there was a request on a friend's Facebook page for fabric to make the sanitary shields for girls (and women) in developing countries who don't have access to feminine products.  Without these items girls can't go to school, women can't go to work (no income) for several days each month! I must confess I had no idea this was a problem in our world.  But I knew I could certainly donate fabric on behalf of Periwinkle and so I did.   It was then that I was approached by Kathy Litwin of Days for Girls to set up a special fundraiser at the shop.  We wouldn't actually be raising money but raising fabric.  How does this work you ask?  Well here's the scoop:

Kathy has chosen a few bolts of fabric suitable for Days for Girls.  When you come to Periwinkle you will be able to purchase this fabric (at cost) in increments starting at .1m right up to the whole bolt if you like.  And of course any amount in between. The bolts are in plain view so you can see what you are paying for.  Once the entire bolt has been purchased it will go to Kathy and Days for Girls so that they can continue with their important work.   Kathy made us an awesome poster so that we can track our progress with each bolt.  The photo below was taken last week but today we are only .1m away from the purchase of the first full bolt! 


We also have a few brochures about Days for Girls if you would like to find out more about this organization or get involved yourself.

In this crazy world we are living in right now it feels good to do something that benefits women who need our help.  ­čśŐ

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Periwinkle Goes to Moose Jaw

Well it would appear that I'm not quite as punctual about blog writing as I'd hoped to be.  I'm going to blame the learning curve or I should say the many learning curves that I'm experiencing while learning to run a quilt shop.  Time has been at a premium!  But here I am.

Jennifer and I have just returned from the Moose Jaw Prairie Heart Quilters Guild's Biennial Show.    It was my first time organizing and putting up a Periwinkle booth.  Lots of things to remember.  With Jennifer's help we didn't forget much for the actual booth.  But there were a few items that will hit the "to bring next time" list.  A dolly and a ladder are at the top of the list.  Below is a picture of our booth "before".




We were very thankful for Heather and Lesli of Quilter's Haven in Moose Jaw.  They were in the neighboring booth to ours and very kindly suggested we use their dolly and ladder.  We also met other quilt shop owners from Manitoba, Alberta and Saskatchewan.  Quilters are a great group of people and these shop owners were no exception.  Generous with thoughts and experiences. 
And here is the "after" photo of our booth.  Quilts do so much to cheer a space up.   Once our booth was together, we had time to go downtown to do a little shopping ourselves.  Moose Jaw is one of my favorite cities.  So many great shops and restaurants. 

Show time Friday and Saturday flew by.  We met many quilters from near and far.  Had a few good laughs too.  It was a wonderful weekend!  And it was an amazing show with lots of beautiful quilts.  Talented group of quilters in Moose Jaw and area.  Thank you Moose Jaw Prairie Hearts Quilters Guild!  You sure know how to treat your vendors well and put on a spectacular quilt show.

 





Tuesday, March 14, 2017

St. Patrick's Day Celebration!

This Friday is St. Patrick's Day!  And we want to have a little fun at Periwinkle Quilting to celebrate the day.  We are going to put the green fabrics from our colour wall on sale at 15% off (this includes the FQs); we are going to further reduce some of our older kits to 30% off; and everyone who makes a purchase of $25.00 or more can enter a draw to win our "pot of gold" (12 yellow/gold FQs!).  Of course we will have refreshments too.  Festivities will start at  "top o' the mornin'"  9:30am and go until closing at 5:30pm. We hope you can join us in the sewing of the green (and maybe a little blarney too)!

Monday, February 20, 2017

Garden Notes, Meow or Never and the UFO Challenge


Well it would seem our Family Day long weekend is almost at an end.  I hope if you were able to have today off that you were also able to get some time at your sewing machine, quilting machine or hand piecing!  We've had a wonderful response so far to the Periwinkle UFO Challenge.  We've had several entries for winning your purchase back and it is still early days for the finishes.  Remember you can join in at any point between now and April 1st.  Details are available in store.   Speaking of UFOs, I spent Sunday and today finishing a shop sample with our new Garden Notes line.  The colours are so soft and pretty!  It's big half square triangles that form 4 blended stars.  The kits are almost ready and we should be able to hang it up this week.  Today I was also able to load the Meow or Never quilt (2 kits left in the shop!) on to the long arm.  It was really a fun and fairly easy top to put together.   To tell you the truth I had been working up the courage to get at it because I thought the cat was all applique.  Not so. The cat is just one (huge) panel.  Some fusible web around the edges, some cutting out and voila! I love it when things aren't complicated!  Quilting it will be a lot of fun too.   Weather-wise this week is still looking pretty good.   All of these warmer temperatures are making me want the Spring fabrics to arrive sooner!  Wishing you all a lovely week!  Happy Sewing!

Friday, February 10, 2017

Valentine's Day and The Great UFO Challenge!

Periwinkle continues to be busy with new fabrics and notions as they arrive at the shop.  We are also busy planning some fun for our customers!  Since Valentine's Day is just around the corner we thought it would be great to plan a few special things for the day.  First, we will have some delicious baking from our neighbors at Nutana Bakery.  Secondly we are going to introduce "The Great UFO Challenge"!   Oh yes.  UFOs, WIPs whatever you like to call them.  The majority of us have them.   Piles in plain view that have become a blended mish-mash of fabric and threads.  Or plastic bins squirreled away for a "later" that never seems to arrive.  To help you take control of your unfinished projects we are offering a challenge in which you can win gift certificates up to $300 from Periwinkle!   All of the details will be available on Feb 14th at the store. You can join in any time from Valentines's Day until April Fool's Day (April 1st).   And if you're able to join us on Feb 14th for Valentine's goodies please do!

Sunday, January 29, 2017

A Big Beach Party Thank you!!

A huge "thank you!!" goes out to everyone who came to the Staycation Beach Party yesterday!  We had beach balls hanging from the lights; vintage bathing suits hanging on the wall; four different versions of our complimentary quilt pattern "Under the Boardwalk" designed by our very own Sandy Cook, hanging on the wall.  We introduced our February (and first) edition of our "Pincushion of the Month" and we had beach music and refreshments which included sand dollar cookies and blue whales!  At times it was wall-to-wall quilters!  What a time we had!  It was great to see everyone and catch up with news and happenings.  We are truly blessed! 
Post-party keep your eyes out for more new kits, new services and of course, new fabrics, patterns and notions!  You can follow us on Facebook and Instagram too! 

The end of a great day.....

Monday, January 16, 2017

Staycation Beach Party!!!

At last the really cold weather has disappeared and we will soon be experiencing Spring-like temperatures.  January has gone a little crazy!  Got to love the prairies!  So to celebrate these warmer temperatures and break up the monotony of winter we are having a  Staycation Beach Party at Periwinkle!
When?  Saturday, January 28, 2017  9:30am - 5:30pm
Where?  Periwinkle Quilting and Beyond, 912 Broadway Ave. Saskatoon
There will be door prizes, specials in store, a free pattern, refreshments and a small gift with purchase!
We hope you can join us for all the fun!


Sunday, January 1, 2017

A New Year and a New Beginning!

Hello!  And Happy New Year!  2017 is going to be a big year of firsts for me.  One of those firsts will be owning a quilt shop!  As of today I am the new owner of Periwinkle Quilting and Beyond.  It's been several months in the making with lots of preparation and paper work!  And I have to thank Michelle for giving me this wonderful opportunity.  Without her encouragement and mentorship it just wouldn't be happening.
I will give you a little bit of information about myself for those of you who don't know me.  After graduating from the U of S my husband and I moved to Toronto where I worked at the head office of The Body Shop Canada.  It was there that my love of retail was established.  We moved back to Saskatoon to be "home" with our families.  I owned a little maternity lease wear business for a few short years until my own children took precedent and I sold the business to be at home with them.  My passion for quilting was ignited in 2000 and with the encouragement of my dear friend, Brenda, I joined the Saskatoon Quilters' Guild and found new friends who loved quilting as much as I did. On a chance visit to her quilt shop I began working for Michelle at Periwinkle which lasted from 2002 to 2014.  I loved being able to help and learn from the customers that came and went from the shop.    Quilters are very special people.   I took time away from the shop these last two years to be with my Dad and my siblings as we helped Mom with her cancer journey which then became time to adapt to life without her.  
It was this fall that I found myself at loose ends.  My children are grown and finishing their post-secondary educations and beginning their own independent lives.  So what a good time to make a change and do something I love.  The opportunity to purchase Periwinkle presented itself and the rest, as they say, is history!
I am so looking forward to visiting with everyone who comes to Periwinkle.  I am excited to be able to bring new fabrics, notions, books and patterns into the shop.  And I am super excited about the expanded offering of classes.  More classes.  More projects.  You will be able to see the project samples in the classroom very soon!  And we will also open the classroom to customers who would just like a place to come and sew.  It is my wish that Periwinkle becomes a fun and welcoming place for quilters to gather. 
So with this excitement in mind I wish you all a wonderful and very quilty 2017!





ps.  Save the date! Saturday, January 28th.  Periwinkle is planning a Staycation Beach Party!  There will be refreshments, door prizes,  and even a small gift with purchase!  We hope you can come!



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