Displaying items by tag: Estevan
The first story about a quilt is the colour, pattern and size that the quilter chooses. The second part of the story is why the quiltmaker made it and who it is for. Most quilters make their quilts with someone or some occasion in mind. Is it for a baby shower or someone's wedding? Maybe it's a comfort quilt for someone who is sick. If you take the time to ask a quilter about their quilt, you may be surprised at the story that fabric creation has to tell!
Call it fate, destiny, life path...whatever you call it, it touched this rural Saskatchewan woman, and she listened.
Christa Marcotte's love for sewing started when she was about 8. She hated bell-bottom pants and decided to alter her pants. She successfully converted those bell-bottoms to straight legs.
She continued to dabble in sewing and creating her clothes from that point on. In the early years of her farm life, she expected her firstborn, and the nesting instinct kicked in. She was going to make him a quilt. Knowing nothing about quilting, she decided to make an Ohio Star quilt, not realizing anything about the intricate complexities of making one. She just saw a picture and ran with it. She ordered her first rotary cutter, mat and Omnigrid ruler that day (from the back of the Western Producer), and never looked back.
"I love to see what I can do with fabrics to make them do the work in a quilt," shared Marcotte. "Painters use paint on a canvas; I use fabric and thread."
Her love for quilting grew, and so did her quilting network. She travelled with other quilting friends to shows like International Quilt Festival in Houston, Texas and Chicago, Illinois, and made little road trips with her quilting group, The Block Party Guild.
In 2002 an idea took seed. Her friend started a business as a Long Arm Quilter (custom quilting for other quilters). Christa decided to start carrying some high-quality battings and backings that could be purchased when the tops were sent to be quilted up. It blossomed from there.
Right then and there, her passion became her business. It was hard to access quilt supplies such as fabric, notions and batting in rural Saskatchewan. She saw the need, and I went for it.
Second Story Quilting opened officially in 2002 and has been growing ever since. Christa's son Justin helps with marketing and handling the shop when needed, while her husband helps with deliveries and even cuts fabric.
This part of the story is so unique; we are sure it's where destiny takes hold and confirms that her path is the right one.
Christa and 23 quilter friends hired a travel agent to organize a trip of a lifetime to Bali, Indonesia. This trip was different. They went to see the process of making Batik fabric. Batik is 100% tight woven cotton hand-dyed with beautiful colours and patterns. There is no right or wrong side to this fabric.
They visited many shops, and it was a cultural experience! But it was with one small shop that made Christa feel like a kid in a candy store. The prints were exquisite and precise and pieces of art unto themselves.
On the plane back home from Bali, she knew she didn't purchase enough there and planned to find the shop owner to import his product.
Fast forward through three years of searching and three years of trying to connect with the shop owner. And pause when she was scrolling through Instagram and saw a quilt shop that she follows in Australia, who shared a photo of Batik fabric from her favourite shop in Bali.
With the assistance of that Australian Quilt Shop owner, her first box of Batiks was on its way. It was unboxed and sold live on Facebook on Second Story Quilting.
Just last week, she unboxed her fifth box of imported Batik fabric for her shop. It will sell quickly, and she will order more and make beautiful quilts that we will all treasure for years to come.
Christa recently participated in the Destination Creation Course. She has plans to partner with some of the course participants in creating quilting trips and pop-up shops in the coming future. Her shop is continually growing and looking for new and fun projects to make and inspire other quilters, young and old! She carries a wide selection of Widebacks, Quilter's Dream Batting and Indonesian Batiks.
Maybe you have an antique table that has been passed down from generation to generation, and you want to be proud to seat people at it, but it's stained and scratched, and well—just plain old ugly. Initially, that need to refurbish is what grew Jewels and Jems Furniture Redesigns, but today, it's a whole new ball of wax.
Daralee Kittelson, the store owner, started refinishing her own furniture. She was good, so good that her friends wanted her to do theirs, and then their friends reached out and so on. All of the projects she was taking on were filling up her garage! That's when she started looking for shop space.
She didn't envision the shop as a downtown retail storefront, but the space was exactly what she wanted. The opportunity inspired her to reimagine the business as a refurbishing shop and a space to host workshops, private events, sell tools, supplies, and home décor.
"I am so fortunate that we were able to transition into what the store is now," explains Daralee. "There aren't many furniture refurbishing storefronts, let alone one in southeast Saskatchewan.
We love teaching others the craft. Especially when it helps us keep a beautiful piece of furniture out of the landfill."
They also supply materials, tools, and advice on making themed home décor items. Clients can join a class or host private events, such as ladies' nights and birthday parties. Kittelson added, "over the Christmas season, we were even hosting staff parties and family nights."
Daralee especially loves learning the stories of the pieces she works on. Recently, she was refinishing a little dresser; while pulling out a drawer, she found a sticker on its back, which read, 'Kathlyne, July 31, 1946.'
"The wonder of who Kathlyne was or is, is magical," she shared. "While working, I imagine what was stored in the furniture, who ate at the table, how many jokes were told around it, or tears fell on it. How little hands have touched and coloured on the furniture. I love what I do; if it brings joy into someone's life by having us fix up that old family heirloom they didn't know what to do with, then I feel my work was a success."
NOTE: Daralee participated in the Destination Creation program in the fall of 2021. A big takeaway from the course for her was that by tracking her time better, she could focus on her short-term goals and achieve them even faster! A clear vision was all she needed.
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Thinking about starting a business? Join the team at Community Futures Sunrise and the Southeast Business Start Up as they dive into topics important for business start-up:
- September 29: How to Start a Business
- October 13: Creative Marketing Strategies for Small Business
- October 28: Go Digital! Top Tips to Get Noticed Online
- November 3: Business Budgets and Finances
Interested to learn more about these events or to register? Visit the CF Sunrise Eventbrite page! Click Here