Saturday, March 28, 2009

Are You Tired of Shop Hop Yet?

Our day started with Summer Vacation at Intown Quilters. What is the one thing that will totally spoil summer fun? Rain. And lots of it. It was so bad that my shoes squeaked throughout the entire store and one of the staff had to follow customers around mopping up behind them.
That did not deter us from sleuthing out an abundance of cuteness though.
This is the Camp Quilt that greeted us as we walked in. I love the cabins. They make me almost want to go camping. I said, "Almost."

How sweet is this gathered serpentine trim? Love it! I didn't see this anywhere else, so I know I will go back to buy some. Something else they had, that was new to me, was bobbin bikinis. Have you seen them? They look like tiny hair bands that wrap your bobbins and prevent them from tangling up together. So cute.

Row after row of sweet fabrics. Too many to choose from really.

But, what they did have downstairs set my heart all aflutter. Japanese fabrics! Yes! I treated myself to two. It was so hard to choose. (Photos of all the treats will come tomorrow.)
Next we drove to Covington and Patrick's. It was not what Cilla and I were expecting at all. It's an old-fashioned store, full of seeds, plants, bulbs and quilts!

You can get your farmer's clothes, boots and baked goods all in one stop.

And wouldn't you love to have her cutting your fabric for you?

We bought two fat quarters each, and I had to have that bag of spearmint leaves to munch on in the truck, which I have now named Tula. Tula the Truck. Perfect.

Back into the dark, rainy day to our last stop- Sweet Home Quilt Company in Conyers. This is the view from the front porch. The trees are in full bloom but look at that rain! I am about over it, really.

Inside it was warm and cozy. Just like going to Grandma's house. Little vignettes everywhere made me feel quite nostalgic for my Grammy's house.

Every nook and cranny filled with homespun goodness.

They even had a grandma, with the smile of an angel, to stamp the last space on our passports.

And then, done! We did it, Cilla and me. We completed a three-day tour of nine quilt shops and are still here to tell about it. I will say that next year we are planning on being better prepared. Here are a few tips for successful shop hopping anywhere:
1. Make a budget and stick to it. There are so many eye-dazzling enticing things that you can really get caught up in the excitement and have a case of buyer's remorse the next day. Not good.
2. Bring cash. Why? Because you have a better sense of what you have to spend that way. If you budget out $20 or $50 per shop, say, then it will be easy to keep to your preset budget if you have nine twenty or fifty dollar bills.
3. Pace yourself. Unless you only have one day in which to hop, take your time. A leisurely visit to two or three shops a day is much better than that "We have twenty minutes here and twenty only! Chop, chop!" kind of pressure.
4. Bring a few different pairs of shoes. Really. I had my Crocs, which were perfect for the rainy weather we had but I would have been sunk if the sun came out and it turned warm.
5. Pack a few healthy snacks and water for the drive between shops. It will restore your energy and keep you from experiencing that afternoon lag.
6. Go with a friend. They will notice something that you missed and you don't want to miss anything.
7. Bring a camera to record the fun. You think you will remember, but you won't. There is just too much to try and store in your brain files.
8. Have fun. talk with the shop staff, chat with other shop-hoppers, make it an experience to remember. You'll be glad you did.


Betty said...

What delightful posts about your trip with Cilla. I can only imagine how much fun the two of you had!

Utah Grammie said...

Oh sounds like such a good day (except the rain) - that store with all the assortments of goods looks very interesting - and both of those ladies are darling :-)

amy said...

Several years ago (before kids) I did the entire hop by myself in one day. Talk about exhausting! And yes, it is much more fun with a friend!

BlueRidge Boomer said...

Mom and i drove from northwest North Carolina to visit Christy and join in the shop hop...our two favorite shops.....Ours and Patrick's.......We had a great time and will be back.....

Enjoy....Linda May

Rebecca P said...

Wow, sounds like a wonderful trip & nice time. Because of your great post, I am going to try a shop hop, I have always wanted to, but now I will for sure.
Rebecca P