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Hello! From here you can access your My Star Collection subscription (button on the left) and visit our bookstore (button on the left or top menu). Also, enjoy your favorite cartoon Mrs. Bobbins, read some fun blog posts, and get to know our authors. Enjoy!

September 22, 2014

Missouri Shop Owner Q&A: Dolores Smith and Sarah Maxwell, Homestead Hearth

WarehouseOnWheels-page-0Our Warehouse-on-Wheels sale continues with an interview with a shop owner who also is a popular author.

Our special sale at five quilt shops in Missouri – and one in Illinois and another in Oklahoma – continues through Sept. 28, with books as much as 75 percent off!

Dolores Smith owns Homestead Hearth, a shop in Mexico, Missouri, with Sarah Maxwell. They have written several Kansas City Star Quilts books.

Their books are A Path to the Civil War: Aurelia’s Journey Quilt; Comfort and Devotion: A Quilting Tribute to Nurses of the Civil War; and Faithful and Devoted: To My Adelaide – A Quilted Love Story.

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What made you decide to open a shop?

Dolores Smith (left) and Sarah Maxwell

Dolores Smith (left) and Sarah Maxwell

Sarah (Maxwell) and I have always wanted to open a shop together – and I had previously owned a shop on my own. We just decided if we were going to do it, now was a good time. So, 12 years ago Homestead Hearth opened its doors.

What are you most proud of about your shop?

All the things that we have accomplished — whether it be a quilt in a magazine or publishing a book. Plus we all work together to make it a fun place to work.

What trends do you see in quilting today? Have tastes changed since you opened your shop?

When we started, 1930s and 1800s were very popular. The 1800s are still holding their own (for me!), and our younger quilters are enjoying the large, bright prints. We try to carry a little bit of everything.

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Homestead Hearth, 105 N. Coal St., Mexico, Missouri 573-581-1966

Next: Quilt Sampler, Springfield, Missouri; and Tulsa, Oklahoma

September 22, 2014

Mrs. Bobbins

067_thrillFor more quilty laughter from Mrs. Bobbins, get The Big Book of Bobbins by clicking here! Just $16.95!

September 21, 2014

Block 9 Free Download!

Here is the ninth block in Kansas City Star Quilts’ 2014 block-of-the-month project, a tribute to those who served in World War I. This block is called Red Cross.RedCrossSept_500

Where Poppies Grow … Remembering Almo commemorates the Great War, which started a century ago, in July 1914. Denniele O’Kell Bohannon of Louanna Mary Quilt Design in Harrisonville, Missouri, and Janice Britz of Bee

Merry Farms in Peculiar, Missouri, designed this year’s quilt as a remembrance of Almo Ebenezer O’Kell, Bohannon’s great-grandfather.

Angela Walters of Quilting Is My Therapy in Kearney, Missouri, did the free-motion quilting.

The finished quilt is 72 inches by 83 inches.

The pattern for this block appeared in the September 21 Kansas City Star. The Star will publish a new block on the third Sunday of every month. Go to the Living tab, then House & Home. To read the story about the quilt and this month’s block in the online version of The Star, click here.

Every month, we will offer the current block on this site as a free download for one week. The blocks then will be available for $3.95 at the Kansas City Star Quilts Store.

Where Poppies Grow: Quilts and Projects Honoring Those Who Served in World War I, the 2014 block-of-the-month book, is now available. It  has all 12 blocks that make up the quilt. Two color variations and setting options are given for the main quilt. Three more striking quilts, two variations of a table runner and a poppy pin and pincushion round out the projects. To buy the book, click here.

To download Block 9, click here.

(Be sure to download the file to your hard drive before attempting to print it out. Because of the file’s large size, you might not be able to simply open the PDF on your screen and print from there. Instead, please open it on your screen, then click the download button to load it on your hard drive. Once the PDF is on your hard drive, open your Adobe reader, find the file, click on it to open, then print it from there.)

One free download per person.  This pattern is available for personal use only — not commercial use — by the person downloading the pattern.  It is a violation of the authors’ and The Kansas City Star’s copyright to copy this pattern and give it to others, or to re-purpose it in any way.

September 19, 2014

Not So Matchy-Matchy After All

Edie McGinnis

Edie McGinnis

By Edie McGinnis

A couple of weeks ago, my friend, Alma Allen called and wanted to know whether we could meet for lunch. And, by the way, did I want an old quilt she wanted to get rid of?

Do I want an old quilt? That’s like asking me if I would like to keep on breathing.

After lunch, she handed me a black trash bag. The quilt was inside and she said, “It’s old, and I want someone to have it that will use it. And it probably needs to be laundered.”

I waited until I got home to look at it. When I pulled the quilt out, I sucked in my breath, because this is what was stuffed inside. quilt

I am not sure of the name of the pattern. At first glance, Hands All Around came to mind but that’s not an exact match so I will have to call it a variation.

The quilter who made this used the same fabric for the center square and two of the diamonds on each corner of the block. The green fabric used surrounding the center square and for the corners is all the same print. For each of the setting blocks, the maker used a white and red print. All the setting blocks are the same.background

When so much of the fabric matches in an antique quilt, you rather expect the rest of the pieces to follow suit. That’s not so with this quilt. The light pieces used in the blocks are as varied as can be. If you don’t look closely, you might miss that point. And that would indeed be sad because that is one of the most endearing features about this quilt.block_3corners_red dots

I think this quilt is one of the best examples I’ve come across that illustrates the point that as long as the fabric used reads the same, or appears to be alike from a distance, the quilt is going to look great. So even though fabrics might not match, it blends well.block2_stripes

I would have enjoyed sitting down and sewing with this quilter. I think I would have learned quite a lot from her. Maybe I would have known early on that it was OK if your pieces didn’t match. It took me quite a long time to learn that lesson.block3_stripes 3 corners

I am more comfortable about using a variety of fabric now then I was when I was a beginning quilter. Now if I make a quilt that is red and white, I will use many different reds and many different whites.

It pays to listen to good advice and to learn the basics. Good workmanship is always important, but each quilter is unique and the quilt should reflect his or her choices no matter whether their best friend, grandmother, mother, kids or husband likes it or not.

One thing I know is true: I stitched with the quilt police for far too long. I sure am glad those days have ended!

Edie McGinnis is an author and editor for Kansas City Star Quilts. She writes every Friday.

September 19, 2014

Missouri Shop Owner Q&A: Amy Jackman, Jackman’s Fabrics

WarehouseOnWheels-page-0As our Warehouse-on-Wheels sale continues in Missouri – and at a shop in Illinois and one in Oklahoma – we bring you another interview with a participating shop owner.

Our special sale – with books as much as 75 percent off! – continues through Sept. 28.

Amy Jackman is president of Jackman’s Fabrics, which has stores in the St. Louis suburb of Creve Coeur, Missouri, and Fairview Heights, Illinois.

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What made you decide to open a shop?

Jackman’s Fabrics has been in my family for 111 years. My great-grandfather started this business in 1903.  I am the fourth generation.s pix

What are you most proud of about your shop?

I am proud of our wonderful displays created by a great team of very talented employees. Customers say it is like walking into quilt heaven. I am also proud that we are once again a Top 5 Baby Lock sewing machine dealer in the USA for sales and service.

What trends do you see in quilting today?

Brights remain a big seller with the modern quilt movement really picking up.

page-0Have tastes changed since you opened your shop?

Well, since we opened in 1903, I would say trends have changed drastically! My great-grandfather sold wool and tailoring supplies out of a horse-drawn cart. Then we went from a small storefront in downtown St. Louis to a 30,000-square-foot building in the St. Louis suburb of Creve Coeur in 1968, to additional stores throughout the St. Louis area.

We currently have two locations, Creve Coeur and Fairview Heights, Illinois. We went from wools and tailoring supplies to double knits, polyesters and Ultrasuede. We had a wall of “calicos,” which were polyester/cotton small quilting prints.  We really delved into the world of quilting in 1995. Now you won’t find any quilting fabrics with polyester in them!

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Jackman’s Fabrics, 1234 N. Lindbergh, Creve Coeur, Missouri; and 1000 Lincoln Highway, Fairview Heights, Illinois

On Friday: Homestead Hearth, Mexico, Missouri