Thursday, July 7, 2011

Bolts to Binding -- Bakersfield CA

Quilters seem to do three things at retreats: Sew, shop and eat! I did all three, pretty much in that order -- sleep is vastly overrated....

While I was sewing, I was listening to conversations around me and people were talking about a new shop in Bakersfield called Bolts to Binding. So a couple of carloads of us descended upon them on Saturday and most of us bought some fabric (I bought quite a lot of fabric, actually) and then Terry, April and I went back again on Sunday. This time I took my camera (and bought some more fabric....)

In case we forgot where we were, the name of the shop is spelled out in great big bright letters above the notions wall. The three of us came back on Sunday because Terry was taking a guild class in a couple of weeks and needed quite a few coordinating fabrics. April took the role of color consultant and I wandered around taking pictures.

When you first step in the front door and look to the right, there is a pretty display of fabrics, quilt blocks, pillowcases and sewing accessories.

Had to get a picture of the pink quilt on the pink wall behind the register area. Patterns, tote bags and samples were displayed in this area, too.

One thing I really liked about Bolts to Binding is that, although there is a lot of merchandise here, it is spread out enough that you can see it all. I've been in some stores where the fabric is packed so densely that unless something really stands out, you miss the individual bolts.

As you walk through the store, you move from room to room and the fabric themes change.

There's Terry and April at left and the poor girl who cut all of Terry's fabric --she probably had to get treatment for carpal tunnel when she was done! Just saying.....

There were batiks on both sides of this corridor; at the end is the red hat room where there were hats, purses and jewelry. I found two cool pieces of Halloween bling -- a rhinestone spider ring and bracelet! No bats, though.....

More rooms, more fabric!

This quilt was displayed at the front of the store; a lot of the fabrics had patterns pinned to them for inspiration....

The Red Hat room would make non-quilters happy while they wait for you -- well, women non-quilters, anyway....

The fabrics that I purchased on this Sunday afternoon trip; I had been eying that black background print the day before, but then seriously started looking for some things to go with it when we came back. I like the Bali Pops in the various color combinations as a quick and easy way to add a variety of colors. Pulled CC (color consultant) April in to help me decide which Bali Pop collection worked the best.

Even with all the time spent shopping and eating, I did get some sewing done. One of the things I like to do when I drive to a trip and don't have to worry about the weight of the stuff I bring with me is to rotary cut in my hotel room during evening down time. In Henderson a few weeks before, I cut a couple of the quilt kits that I had thrown in the car on the off chance I'd have the time and space to do that and then brought them to the Gathering Friends retreat to do the piecing.

I got this quilt kit at Bolts in the Bathtub a few years ago; the pattern is "Shoo Blue Fly" quilt by Nancy Odom.

Here's a closeup of my border fabrics.....the quilt will finish at 52"x65".

I also purchased this kit at Bolts in the Bathtub, but not so long ago, maybe late last year. The pattern is "Winter Pinwheels" by Tiffany Hayes of Needle in a Hayes Stack. The quilt will finish at 73"x89".

The kit was in flannels, but I prefer to work with regular cottons, so Tiffany picked out other fabrics for me. At left are my border fabrics...

....and here's a closeup of the pieced blocks. I was going to take another picture because my foot was in it, but then I decided that the polish went really well with the quilt!

The weekend was really successful -- got two quilt tops pieced except for borders and found a new shop that's within a couple of hours of my house -- hooray!

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