View Full Version : Night Owl on a Rant & Rave

June 25th, 2014, 04:28 AM
There is some of each on this post.

I did my first ever Quilt Shop Hop last week. I met many lovely people and, sadly for my bank balance, found many new quilt shops near and far. This hop runs from Wednesday to Sunday of one week only. That is a bunch of miles behind the wheel if you are going to try to hit all 51 shops. They ranged from the Canadian to Oregon borders and from the base of Mount Rainier to tip of the Olympic peninsula. You had a passport and each shop had a stamp. You got your page stamped and turned it in when you hit 16 stamps. Each completed passport entered you in a drawing for some really nice prizes.

Part of the deal is that each shop 'designs' and gives-away an 8" block using that year's feature fabrics. Now, I will fairly admit that the stores that choose to participate are going to be handing out A LOT of these blocks. From the counts I heard on Thursday evening most shops had handed out close to 1,000 already and that hadn't even hit the 'big' days.
The shops have an 'out' for providing fabric for these blocks. They are only required to distribute 3 pieces of fabric (no dimensions given) from the featured lines. Then they can create a finishing or completer bundle, for which they can charge as much as they want to. This is where I get cranky. I don't mind using some of my own fabrics, especially for backgrounds or bits of accent colors for some of the appliques. Make it easy for me to do that though. I pretty much refused to buy the completer kits.
One shop was charging $5.99 for the completer and the others ranged from $1 to $3. These also seemed to be the shops with the bigger customer bases. Are you that hard up that you can't provide that one extra 2x3" strip of yellow polka dot print? I know that I dropped enough $ in each store to at least cover the cost of my block with the exception of two. (I will go back and rectify the situation in the one store when I'm not in a rush to get to the last stop 40 minutes away in about 35. And if I ever need primitives, homespuns, etc. I'll certainly head for the other as that shop had the most outstanding selection.) My other big gripe is that one place did give us the three pieces of fabric, but two of the three were too small for their cutting instructions, by a significant amount.

On to the raves. I did buy one completer kit. The shop was charging a $1 for it, and all of the money went to the local food bank. Now, that I could buy into without any trouble.
Kudos to the "Off the Beaten Path" shops, in every one we stopped in the staff was friendly, the bathrooms were clean and service was quick.
Thanks to all of the shops that participated. I had fun and I'll have to plan for next year!

Have any of you participated in a Shop Hop? How long did it run? Were there prizes in each store or did you have to get a passport stamped for the entry to the big drawing?

June 25th, 2014, 07:17 AM
They can be fun. I have only participated in one. DH drove and we had a good time. I never did finish the table runner that the blocks were for. After it was over I asked the owner of the closest quilt shop if they already had drawn the names of the winners. She said yes and that all the winners have been notified. I asked who they were in case I knew any of them just to congratulate them. Imagine my surprise when she read off my name. I told her I had not been notified. I won the shop prize at the newest shop. It was a $100 basket of goodies. It was the responsibility of each shop to call the one that won their shop prize. DH drove me back out there and I dropped a few more dollars.

So it pays to ask who won. I have done the online hop where you try to find the bunny. I have won a couple of $10 gift cards. I have not done that in a while.

June 25th, 2014, 10:15 AM
Yes I love Shop Hops!!! I did part of one last weekend & plan to hit a few more this weekend on the way to visit the kids in Orange County.
This is the 14th year for this particular shop hop in So Cal. It runs from Thursday to Sunday for 2 consecutive weeks. If you are really ambitious you can go from Lancaster in the north end to San Diego in the south, something like 25 stores or more. My husband & I plan to do the whole thing when I finally retire. Can't wait. :)

Sylvia H
June 25th, 2014, 10:16 AM
My sister and I have participated in a local Shop Hop for several years. Here are the particulars:

You buy as many passports as you want - they are $5.00 each. At each shop, you get your passport(s) stamped. If you get stamped at all the stores, that portion of the passport is left at the last store and entered into the grand prize drawing.

You keep the rest of the passport book(s), as each book contains coupons for 20 - 25% off at each store (either for a days purchase, or for 1 item purchased). The Shop Hop is in November. The coupons are good for the following Jan - June.

Also in the passport book is a coupon for 25% off of backing material for the Shop Hop quilt. As you go to each shop, you get part of the directions for a quilt. If you go to all the shops, then you have directions for the whole quilt. Each shop has the quilt on display, and each shop's quilt is different because of the colors and fabrics chosen. Sometimes, a shop will make a kit using the same materials that were used in their quilt, but that doesn't happen too often.

The grand prizes are usually a Janome sewing machine (1st prize); some kind of high end quilting tool; $25 coupons for each shop; a large fat quarter bundle; and something else that I can't remember.

In addition to the grand prizes, each shop has a daily raffle that you enter when you visit that shop. The raffle prizes are created by each shop individually.

June 25th, 2014, 10:49 AM
I wasn't Night Owling last night as yesterday's activities wiped me out and I slept long hours, woke up for a potty stop and back to sleep.

Have participated a little in a big Shop Hop, passed on the Passport as I knew I wouldn't be stopping at more than 2 or 3 shops. My Guild used to run a bus trip years ago before the cost of the bus and the closing of some shops made the idea too expensive.

June 25th, 2014, 11:03 AM
Last year I did it....I went to one shop, however it was on Vashon Island, so it should count for something!!!! This year, my sister wanted to go out to Gig Harbor to see all the quilts from past years, so we did that. Besides that one, I made it to three shops in Tacoma and then one in Puyallup. It's hard to do when you work everyday. All the places I went, the kits I saw were just a dollar. Last year, they had a large finishing kit you could buy for a great price and I did, only because I liked the fabric, not because I was making the quilt!!

Now next year, it will be a different story!

June 25th, 2014, 11:25 AM
I didn't do the shop hop but I did fine myself in one of the participating shops the busiest day of the hop! Buckley's Quilter's Heaven. Nice shop, super sweet owner and people who work there. I'll go back for sure, when it's not so busy!

June 25th, 2014, 12:13 PM
I didn't do the shop hop but I did fine myself in one of the participating shops the busiest day of the hop! Buckley's Quilter's Heaven. Nice shop, super sweet owner and people who work there. I'll go back for sure, when it's not so busy!

Is that the little shop next door to the gun shop?

June 25th, 2014, 12:14 PM
Libby, they were fun. I stopped in there Thursday evening and they were still pretty busy. I don't know how many times I have driven by both of the Buckley shops and never stopped in. That probably won't happen anymore!

I created a couple of Hop Monsters when I suggested the idea to my friends who are new to quilting. They hit most of the shops on the hop. It was good for them, as they are new to the area and it got them out to see the state and now they have some idea of distances. I went with them on Friday and we hit all of the southern shops and wrapped up out in Yelm, Eatonville, and Orting.
I have been to several of the most northern shops during non-hop trips, and will visit the ones up the peninsula this weekend. I couldn't validate two trips in the same location back to back. This one will pay me, and the other was just going to cost me!

Pat, Maybe next year we can get together and hit a few!

I was working on cutting out the blocks last night and realized how much difference there was in some shops block packets. It seemed that the shops that had every reason to be frugal with their fabrics (tiny shop or very specialized fabrics) were the most generous, and visa versa.

I had better go get a fresh cuppa and get back to the cutting. I want to take a few of these blocks that require hand stitching with me this weekend.

June 25th, 2014, 12:15 PM
Heavenly is the one in the complex with the fitness club and Subway. They face Hwy 410.