Two Things, 1-14-23

January was intended to be rug month and I have gotten swamped with several other things – I apologize. But I won’t forget.

Transparency – my in-house sewing room is a dream for any quilter but there’s more. Here is the quilt shop:

All of this space is also mine – you’ll hate me for this display of photos. I am transported to another world when I walk in this door. It’s my private escape – where I go on vacation instead of to Florida or Arizona like all my friends.

Many people have vacation homes – this is mine.

Reader quilts—-have I missed some when I was having tech issues?

Only one reader quilt? But it is fabulous!

I need to light a fire under you guys!

Here’s our very full booth at Junkin Gal in downtown Garner – lots and lots of fabric for sale. Stop by if you’re in Garner!

It’s a college basketball Saturday!

82 thoughts on “Two Things, 1-14-23

  1. Debbie Miller

    Your photos make me envious of all that space! Jogged my memory too-I have the applique flower blocks that I started somewhere-need to find them!

  2. Shirley

    Mary, I love your space. I finally made it to your shop the year you closed and loved everything about it and your farm and the animals. This is a lovely place.
    Shirley from Oregon

  3. Gail Celeste

    What a wonderful vacation home! I travel 300 miles from Illinois to Michigan to my vacation home.
    My grandmother first went up there around 1910 – from Chicago – on the train. She stayed there all summer in a “humble” cottage. This is the cottage we went to when we were kids — no running water – a big hand pump outside and an outhouse. The lake was 2 blocks away. Eventually, my dad built a cottage near the lake and we’ve been there for 67 years! We were so excited to have running water.
    My dad built an upstairs addition – adding 2 more bedrooms, when he retired and my sisters and I built a wonderful addition 12 years ago. We call it our Happy Place!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Gail – I know about your happy place – how wonderful for you and your sisters!!! But quite a long trip

  4. Linda Levad-Passow

    I love the way you are utilizing that space. It also brings back such wonderful memories of browsing through my favorite quilt store.

  5. Diane in Colorado

    I love your “vacation home”!!! What a blessing to have such a lovely creative space, both in your home and in the chicken coop/quilt shop!! You gave up art of your home for many years to welcome people to the quilt shop right there on your property—I’m glad you get to enjoy that space even now after closing the shop!!!

  6. Rita in Iowa

    Mary I remember stopping in, coming through the door with the countertop just inside, walking to the right were the cutting table is and all the quilts hanging from the ceiling and walls. Patterns hanging from the pegs. Then doing a turn around and heading down the room where there was more fabric and kits for the taking. Then your back room was full of bins of patterns, also for sale. If you were lucky you got to pet the cats that were prowling the rooms. Many memories.
    Still have kits that need to be sewn, imagine that!

  7. Mary Markert

    What a glorious vacation spot! I’d never want to leave. Everything in one contained place!! Enjoy!!!!

  8. Tanya T. in Houston

    Love seeing your place! You are one fortunate woman! And, the Junkin’ Gal photos make me wish I were in Garner! Hazel and I are almost birthday twins…mine was January 10th…I hope you two had as much fun this week as I did!

  9. Diane in Maryland

    I don’t hate you but have turned green with envy! You get lots of beautiful quilts finished in your sewing places. Are the spaces dedicated for different projects? I don’t think you would be going back and forth to try to find a certain fabric? No matter what size my sewing room it seems I fill up every bit of it. Yes, I do need a fire lit under me. I have been a slug with getting anything done.

  10. Bonnie in Oregon

    Mary, I love your vacation home! 😄
    What an amazing place it is for your creative endeavors!
    And I enjoyed reading about all the ladies’ impressions when they visited your’s and Connie’s store. I had hoped to visit there one day, but it wasn’t to be. However, reading your blog is a treat I look forward to. And, I really don’t need any more fabric so it’s probably a good thing I didn’t get to visit the store 😄
    Gail, your memories of your Happy Place home in Michigan are very special. ❤️

  11. Sandy

    Hi Mary, absolutely amazing amount of space you have for quilting! And organized, l try, but get side tracked easily! When l find things l want now for future projects l pin them to my little notice board! Only 5 more blocks to make for quilts for Stella and Luna, once l learn to send photos l will send photos of them! Take care everyone, best wishes from Sandy

  12. Beth

    How fun for you to have such great sewing spaces!
    BTW – I read all your posts even though I don’t comment I enjoy them all. Keep them coming!

  13. Liz Foster

    I love your sewing (I’d call it a house) room. I would love a vaction house like that problem would never want to leave it! Hubby might not like it because no food would be cooking, oh but the fun I could have by myself or with my quilting peeps.
    Love your post and look forward to them, sure miss the Goat Gazette!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Liz Foster – The Goat Gazette was truly a treasure – we had lots of readers!

      1. Bonnie in Oregon

        Oh how I loved The Goat Gazette! The recipes, the pictures of you and Connie, many patterns and books, your flowers, friends, and your precious animals! ❤️
        I have all the copies stashed in my sewing room! ❤️

  14. Sue in Oregon

    Nice, Mary. I’m a homebody too. East, West, Home Is Best. Especially when you have gorgeous sewing places.
    Who made the wonderful reader quilt? It is perfect.
    Your Junkin’ Gal spot is well done. I bet you two do very well there. I had a vintage spot in a mall once and it was no easy task to keep it filled and looking good. Fun to get the checks, though.

    1. Debbie G in SE WI

      Hi Sue! I made the quilt that Mary showed. Looking forward to hanging it next Christmas!

      1. Gloria in North Carolina

        Debbie G. Love your quilt. Looks wonderful! What is name of pattern. I don’t ever remember seeing pattern.

      2. Jan Hebert

        Debbie, your quilt is lovely! The colors are so soothing – I can’t imagine doing all of those half square triangles! Jan in MA

  15. Sherry Whalen

    Such a wonderful space – I remember it well, and if I lived just a bit closer…. 😉 My husband says I kinda have the same deal….a large space for a quilting – but he says ‘STOP CALLING OUR HOUSE A QUILT ROOM!’ LOL!! (He’s not wrong, there is quilting equipment, paraphernalia, and sewing machines in most rooms). I spent Thursday and Friday with our Kasson group – sewing together and chatting. It was fun and relaxing. It must have been a much needed retreat as we had 15 each day, a larger group than we usually have at around 9-10 people. We sew at the church, bring our lunches and go back home to sleep so it is very economical lol. Several of us made Midi bags, one of our group members helped write the pattern so she taught the ‘class’. It was fun and we ended up with a cute tote bag. And we worked on our own projects too.

    I am sorry you are having blog issues – and annoying because I am sure they don’t give you any hint as to WHY it won’t post so you can correct or avoid whatever the issue is. When you type up a blog post, is there any way you can save it before you hit publish to prevent lost work? I am probably making stuff up and thinking about it too simply – as I don’t blog and never have – therefore I have zero knowledge except as an end user.

    I need to get to my long arm…I have this year’s Bonnie Hunter mystery together, plus about 6 more in the queue. Gotta stop starting and work a bit on the finishing!! Sherry

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      What a good idea to look into – saving it first! I’m going to look around – might take me a few test posts to figure it out. Thanks, Sherry!

  16. Kimberly Lusin

    I love your “vacation home!” And I’d rather go there than Arizona or Florida anytime. I can relate to it being your happy place. I’d be in there all the time. Thank you for the great photos of it.

  17. Nancy K Walker

    Wow that’s impressive! I feel the same way. When I come out of my sewing room I feel rejuvenated! I don’t need a trip anywhere else! Same with my garden.

  18. Marcia-Ohio

    Love your shop. Looks very productive. It is so nice to have a designated space to be creative.

  19. Carol

    Ohhhh, so many wonderful memories of visiting your vacation place💕💕💕💕. I was Carol in Memphis but moved to Longview, WA

  20. Charlotte S in northern California

    Oh, what a wonderful vacation home!!! Your creative place!!
    The reader’s quilt is beautiful!
    I think it rained all night and is dreary outside today. I’m staying in my sewing room and can hopefully get something done.

  21. Connie R. In NE Wis

    Your quilting space is my kind of vacation spot. Everything about it looks so inviting. Thanks so much for sharing! I’m looking forward to getting back to sewing but first, I need to do some organizing and decluttering. I have plenty of projects to work on but couldn’t resist ordering a charm pack from Primitive Gathering once I saw her blog post yesterday featuring Moda Love Charm Quilt in her red and white fabrics. I also ordered the pattern for the Jersey Girl red and white quilt that Connie showed in her sewing room tour. I should be all set for Valentines Day decorating.

  22. Cynthia Arneson

    I recognize that sewing space…it reminds me of a beautiful quilt shop I went to when I was in Iowa! You have a great sewing space…wish I had half that much, but then I’d only go buy more fabric! Happy sewing!

  23. Janice R.

    Loved seeing your sewing room!!! Lucky you! Mine is very small and always a mess, but I still can get things done from time to time. Can you tell me the name of the pattern for the appliqued flowers on your wall in the photo with the long arm? I love that one. Might motivate me to get to some sewing again soon!
    Enjoy your blog so much.

  24. Kathy in western NY

    What a treasure trove to have your space right there home with you. I am envious of all your space. We once thought of building a 2 story garage and I would use the second floor for a sewing studio. I am glad we didn’t as once our kids left, the extra bedrooms worked out much better for my sewing rooms and storage of fabric. I honestly could not see me at my age climbing up that many steps and trying to heat that big an area and it’s so cozy and comfy for me now to just wander into my sewing sanctuary. And I can close the doors. It’s been fun to see your happy place also thank you for sharing.

    1. Diane, Squeak, and Buddy in Central Ohio

      Bills just beat Miami😃
      Mary, I always wanted to visit Country Threads, but it was too far from Ohio. I did visit via The Goat Gazette and book, fabric, and pattern purchases😃
      I love the size of your sewing space. I am busy reorganizing the sewing room and a couple of closets. I store my quilts by rolling them on large tubes covered with fabric. I have eliminated several items and now have room to store them more easily. I have several quilts to finish and many to make. Now that I am out of pain in shoulders and back, I am raring to go.
      Take care everyone. Cold here, but might warm up. We celebrate the “ baby” grandson’s 19 th birthday today. The times goes by wayyyy too fast.

  25. Jeanie S, Central Illinois

    Your quilt shop turned sewing room is truly amazing. Who else has one of those in their own yard? I love it!
    Between a virus and a bum knee, I have not been productive. However, my mind was still planning, and I am now ready to start on two baby quilts.
    Thanks for all you do. 🥰

  26. Barbara Moore

    Hi Mary! I don’t need to go to Arizona for the winter – I live here😆! And right now it’s 68! Loved the photos you shared – I enlarged each one to study it and look at all your goodies. I spy a “triangle” sitting Santa that I too made many many years ago – back in the days of sewing critters and dolls for boutique sales. Thanks for posting them – always enjoy seeing your spaces filled with fabric and animals or both😉. Take care and stay warm!
    Barb in Tucson

  27. Carolyn Boutilier

    Your quilting space is to die for. I like your idea of vacations in the quilt room. When I am working my hands I feel content. I am braiding a small rug for my granddaughter that is getting married in spring. When that is finished I plan on making her a quilt for the wedding. I fell 2 months ago and still in PT it get more movement in my right arm. I also had lots of nerve pain and then came down with shingles on my right side even though I have had 3 shingle shots. had a cortisone injection 2 days ago that has lessen some of the pain. Carolyn b Shenandoah Valley Va

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Carolyn – I’m shocked and saddened to hear you got shingles even after the shots!!! I figured I was protected after the shots – eek!! I’ve always heard shingles is so painful – hope the cortisone keeps the pain away. Oh dear, you poor thing. Ugh.

  28. Cathy D

    Thanks for a tour of the quilt shop! Oh how I miss that place. The pictures took me right back to my last trip there ❤.

  29. Kathy L

    You’re quilt shop is a dream, I would love either the shop or the room, so much space in both, so very lucky

  30. Marsha from Kansas

    I love both of your sewing spaces. I guess I would call it envy to have such nice spaces, but not mad at you. I now can call my sewing room my vacation, too, since we don’t travel any more. Thanks for the idea, i am going to steal it! I haven’t gotten much sewing done. With all the organizing going on different You Tube and blogs, I decided it was time. My daughter said she would help. I’m afraid I haven’t actually gotten rid of much stuff, but projects are together and fabrics are together by designer, Primitive Gatherings, Lori Holt, Edyta Sitar, and Corey Yoder, mainly. Leftover fabrics from finished projects in one tub to decide what to do with. I thought I was keeping up with leftovers, but I was deceiving myself. Either cut up for Scrap Saver or big enough to donate to the guild. Trying to follow along with Pat Sloan. I actually found a black project that wasn’t Halloween. It will be a Three Yard Quilt. Grouped some fabrics in a tub to sew more Three Yard Quilts. My excuse for no projects to send you pictures and I’m sticking with it. Lol

  31. Carmen Montmarquet

    You are right, you do have your very own retreat house to go to and it is Wonderful!
    I sure wished I lived close enough to go shopping at Junkin Gal’s, what fun that would be, you would have to replenish it big time after I left!!!
    Thanks for sharing your vacation pics!
    Also love the quilt the reader sent you. it’s just Awesome!

  32. chris

    I always enjoyed this quilt shop. I wish it was still open. I still have fabric from the shop!

  33. Kaye Gerber

    I would LOVE your space, too! I’m scattered between a dining room, two bedrooms and a big part of the basement! Even if it was on one floor, I think I could make sense of it. I keep trying- now though I’m itching to get my hands into the dirt- starting some seeds, repotting, you name it. I’m glad we have a warm home and aren’t lacking for food!🙏🏼❣️🙏🏼 Blessings to you!

  34. Carol at Pin Oak Quilting

    Mary, across from your longarm is a very pretty quilt with flowers in each rectangle. Is that your pattern? I love it!

    I have an 18×11 foot room as my sewing room, it’s very nice, but large types of cutting and ironing, I do in our remodeled basement, which was once my sewing room. My new space has lots of light coming in, north and south, eight foot high windows with transoms.

    Like you, I’d rather stay home, I have no interest in winters in the south, although… after 80 inches of snow and a historic blizzard, perhaps I should rethink that!

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Carol – I can’t remember the name of that pattern – at the moment. But it will come to me

      1. Carol at Pin Oak Quilting

        Looking forward to that pattern name and hopefully it’s yours! And it’s featured for sale. Too sweet!

  35. NancyTD

    The greatest vacation spot ever! I am sewing . Finishing things of long ago. Just haven’t sent any pictures yet. Thanks for sharing your special place.

  36. Joyce from NY

    Your sewing rooms look like so much fun & roomy for lots of projects! Mine is in a spare bedroom & part of my basement!
    I have a question, maybe one of you lovely quilters could answer, I bought a new cutting mat & realized when I got it home that it smells, can I wash it off with something or thank you for any advice!!

    1. Brenda

      I’d suggest simply airing it out…I remember the time I truly thought that something had died in my sewing space. Once I realized that it was the mat, I put it on the porch for a couple of days….good thing nothing dead…I’d never have found it in all the mess!

        1. Kathy

          Was it an “oily” type smell? The last new large one I bought had an odor like it had oil on it.

          1. Joyce from NY

            Kathy, I guess I wouldn’t call it an oily smell, just a new kind of industrial smell, pretty strong! I googled it & they said to wash it with vinegar & water, maybe I’ll try that!

  37. Brenda

    Seeing those pics brings back fond memories for me as well…pulling into the yard, dodging critters, stepping over a dog, and finding a kitty or two to stroke…and then there was the fabric! Tucking a Goat Gazette into the bag and traveling back home to Owatonna at that time….thanks for sharing this place with us now and then 🙂

  38. Sue in Marion, IN

    I love seeing your space! I never got to go to your shop, but I sure acquired a lot of your books and patterns!

  39. Margaret in North Texas

    I love the flower quilt across from the long arm also. Is there a pattern? Thanks!

    1. Diane, Squeak, and Buddy in Central Ohio

      Margaret I N. Texas. I think that is Under the Garden Moon’s pattern called Tessie. Design by Andy Mc Clellan. I bought it from Mary at the Country Living Show in Columbus Ohio many years ago. I love it, too, and hope to make it someday. I was kind of surprised I could find it, but I went right to a pattern basket and it was there! 🙀😹

      1. Kathy in western NY

        Diane – look, at you so organized!! I love it. All that hard work is so worth it when you can put your hands right on an answer. We were at that Country Living Fair in Columbus Ohio many years ago too. We brought our daughter and daughter in law with us in the motor home to shop there too. Such a nice fair grounds to have that show.
        So happy the Bills won in the nail biter game.

      2. Mary Etherington Post author

        Diane – thank you so much! You nailed the name of that pattern – I hope it’s still available if the reader wants it. Connie and I actually made it together – it’s been hanging in the shop for years.

  40. Susan K in Texas

    Another wonderful quilting space! So many areas to work on different projects and play with fabric. Thanks for sharing your spaces.
    I’ve been working on a HST quilt project. I’ve been sewing on my featherweight. It’s such a fun little machine.

  41. Jo in Wyoming

    Mary, I bet your heart beats happy when your in your space. It’s wonderful.
    I could spend hours there.

  42. Barbara Campbell

    So happy you have that sewing space, Mary! Looks wonderful. It’s a good thing I don’t live near Garner……those look like some Goodies at the Junkin Gal. Sew on, Sister!

  43. Gayle Lacey

    Golly, I miss coming to your quilt shop. It was a day’s drive, but it was wonderful! Don’t know which I liked best … the fabric or the animals! You vacation wherever you want. You’ve earned it!

  44. Judy - Michigan

    Your vacation home is fabulous and it’s not a lovg journey to get there! I haven’t done any sewing for weeks as once again I am reorganizing my sewing room (again) and cleaning. Hopefully soon I will be starting something or finishing something. Next week is a Sleep at Home retreat so I know I will be doing something there. Regards, Judy

  45. Jackie in NY

    Hi Mary – I sure do wish I lived near you! I’d stop by your booth often!! Love the shop as well as your sewing room. Lots of creative space!!

  46. Cynthia from SWMN

    I loved the completed quilt, I think stars are my favorite. The colors are nice too! You have the best of both worlds with your sewing space in by our house and your shop is a fun working vacation for sure, made me think of so many projects, so little time. I am trying to make progress on projects here. Need to get bindings on and hand stitched down so I can start on my next crop of projects! Trying to get things more organized in my sewing area as well. I got our two old snow sleds done, now to work on a couple of smaller projects, then I intend to paint my orphan chair black. My intent is to drive to Junkin’ Gal this spring. This looks like the greatest place ever! Goal is to get there by Mid-May, otherwise time just slips away, and the days are longer to do it in one day! I loved reading everyone’s comments too!

  47. Patty

    Oh my that’s a fantastic sewing place. I’d probably never remember where I put stuff. It’s bad enough finding stuff in my basement. A big set of shelves would help though!

  48. Patty

    I was reading some of the other comments and I now know why your sewing home looks so familiar! I was there once many years ago! Your store was closed before I made it back a second time. I’m sure I spent hours looking around there.

    Can anyone send in a quilt picture?

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Yes, anyone can send a quilt picture to my email – I welcome all photos!

  49. Meredith in Cincinnati

    Love your vacation space! I’m sure it brings much joy. What a treasure it would be (hint, hint) to publish a Goat Gazette book made up of all those Gazette treasures.

  50. Elle

    Several days back you asked for good books.

    The Dictionary of Lost Words
    The Color of Water
    Women of Light
    The Bookwoman of Troublesome Creek
    Bookwoman’s Daughter (read above first)
    Run Rose Run
    Remarkably Bright Creatures

    I read 89 books in 2022. I could go on and on and on 😉

    1. Mary Etherington Post author

      Elle – I have read several of these – could you pick the top 3 of 89?

  51. Gayle

    Hi Mary,
    Looking at these pictures of your vacation home brings back so many fun memories when it was a quilt shop! I visited often with a car full of quilting friends. We were going to Country Threads! It was a wonderful destination and we were excited to visit that busy building where cats roamed free and it seemed always a dog or two greeted visitors. Oh, can’t forget the fabric…rows upon rows of wonderful quilting fabric. It was like a bit of magic and creative adventure at Country Threads! Gayle in Stillwater, MN.

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