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Sunday, January 21, 2007


Baton Rouge Quilt Shops

At Carol's suggestion, we visited two quilts shops in Baton Rouge. Luckily, they were both pretty easy to find, right along I-12. Fabric Krazy, run by Pamela Grigsby, publishes the "Lime Queen News" and proclaims "lime is a neutral color". Her fabulous fabric choices and samples sprinkled throughout reflect her passion for visuals that go "pop!" and lively, inventive piecing. I really, really liked the Oriental jacket that was the sample for an upcoming jacket class. I also thought it was cool that her husband was busily cutting fabric to help speed along the Saturday crush. I was impressed by the fact that her husband could handle a rotary cutter well enough to be the chief cutter at the front of the store.

Any store that calls its Block of the Month "Sweet Tea" has got to be a nice shop. And Quilt Corner is. Down the road a little ways, it was located right next to Cross Stitch Corner. (Do I sense a theme here?) Even though it was late Saturday afternoon, the shop was buzzing with activity. Two ladies were spread out on the floor with a slew of Orientals trying to figure out which they liked with what. ("I hate to buy fabric I'm not going to use," sighed one, "but it's not like I haven't done it before!") As the pair continued to ponder, someone else sought advice from staff about good colors for a pre-teen boy's quilt. Over at the register, a quilter gave the person totaling her purchase the update on a mutual friend's chemotherapy progress. This shop clearly has a large, loyal clientele base. This is a great thing for a shop, but it was impossible for impatient me to wait out the TLC time that this store was providing its regulars. It was my loss, because I really liked the fabric at this place, but I was tired and didn't NEED it, so I wasn't willing to take the time. The winners are the Baton Rouge quilters who can come to a place as friendly and welcoming as Quilt Corner and buy beautiful fabric (even if they aren't going to use it) as part of the bargain!

Baton Rouge doesn't have a lot to offer on a Saturday when it is not football season. The downtown was deserted by 3 pm, and the main attraction seemed to be the state capitol building, which did have quite a few cars in its parking lot. The building itself is very opulently appointed, with lots of brass and marble, and there is an elevator that will take you to the 27 th of its 30 floors where you can go out onto the observation deck. But the real attraction was not the great view of Baton Rouge and the Mississippi River, but the little drama that was played out in the ladies' room.

The grounds of the Louisiana state capitol are beautiful, so apparently many brides decide it's the perfect location for the wedding portrait. However, Huey Long probably didn't have the comfort and convenience of bridal parties in mind when he okayed the plans for the place. That afternoon the handicapped stall at the end of the ladies room was occupied by a young lady who was trying, with the help of a friend, to get herself into her dress. At the other end stood the photographer (a female) who was patiently waiting for her to get hooked and zipped and whatevered into her huge dress while she tried not to drag the garment on the floor of the public bathroom. Exclamations of "Is it fastened yet?" and "This darn thing is really heavy!" emanated from the stall and provided quite an amusement for the other visitors. This process had begun prior to my entry to the facility, and continued through my entire visit to the observation deck. As we left the grounds, we witnessed the bathroom bride posing in several places outside the structure. I hope those pictures are worth it.

I love both of these shops. Even though I have only been quilting for about 10 years, I still consider myself a novice. Anytime I have a questions, I am able to visit either of the shops mentioned and get help. Thanks to both shops for being there...and I love Baton Rouge too!
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