9/12/12

Quilt Shop: Quilt Gallery

Click right here for my Dots on Dots block!


Today we needed to drive into Kalispell to get a few things at the hardware store.  We had breakfast along the way.  The deal was that I would wait patiently while Mike snooped the plumbing department of the hardware store, and he would wait patiently (as he always does) so that I could snoop the quilt shops.  As it turns out, one of the quilt shops was no longer in business.  The one I visited was well worth the trip, however.  

Before I tell you about the quilt shop, I want to tell you about an app I'm using on my iPhone to find quilt shops in the areas we are traveling through. It's put out by the Quilter's Club of America, and it's called (appropriately enough) "Quilt Shops".   Incidentally, when I searched for a link to the app, I noted that it is available for the Android operating system as well.


I've been using this app along the way, and it has been very useful and easy to use.  When you bring up the home screen, it looks like this.  If you grant it permission to use your current location, you can simply press "start search".  It's also possible to search using a zip code or a name.


I've been allowing it to use my current location, so that any time I have cell service, I can do a search and see if there are any quilt shops in the area, no matter where we are.


In the Kalispell area, it informs me that there are three shops available.  The shop I visited today was the Quilt Gallery.  So I simply press on the pin I'm interested in, and it brings up information about the shop.


Now I have the option of calling the shop or mapping it.  I can call by simply pressing the telephone number. I don't have to dial the number myself.  I highly recommend this step because the app (like any directory) is not completely accurate.  Quilt shops come and go, and so I always recommend calling before driving.

Once I've determined that the quilt shop is in business and open, I can press the "Map it" button and it will bring up a map showing me the location.


At this point, I think the app would be greatly improved if it also included voice navigation, but that's just me.  I can use my yellow pages app for that too.  It just requires an extra step.

You may notice that this app has been rated with 2 1/2 stars.  It has only been reviewed 14 times (and not by me).  I'll do that once I'm finished with this post.  The complaints had to do with accuracy and improvements that could be made.  Still enough people liked it (including me) to make it worth your while to give it a try.  And, bonus!  It's free.  As for the problems with accuracy, see above about calling ahead before driving to any quilt shop.  That's just common sense, and the app makes it very easy for you.

Okay, on with the quilt shop.  The first shop we went to was no longer in business (I neglected to call ahead or I would have known that).  Still, it wasn't a wasted trip.  We saw this picturesque farm along the way.  I love freshly mown and bundled hay.


Here's a little closer view of the barn.


After stopping to take a couple of pictures of the farm, we were off to the Quilt Gallery.  Click on the link to see their website, which is excellent.  There is a lot more information there about the shop and its owners.



The shop is located on the main highway that runs through Kalispell, and so it is very easy to find.  The parking lot is small, but ample.  (It was not large enough for us to pull in with our RV attached, however, and so we passed it by on our way through town the first time.)

The shop is beautiful when you walk in the front door.  It is a moderately large space, but they have organized their fabrics on tall shelves, like a library would organize books, and so the space is well-utilized and easy to navigate.


While they had a large selection of fabrics, I thought there were some categories missing.  They had some beautiful batiks, novelty prints, large-print florals, landscape prints, regional prints, children's prints, and flannels.  However, I did not notice any reproduction prints or calicoes.  Anyone looking for those kinds of fabrics would be disappointed.  The table right in front of this image is all Christmas fabrics.  There was also a small supply of Halloween fabrics available.

One whole room to the right of the front door was devoted to patterns, books and kits, and there were more patterns distributed throughout the store.  There was also a good supply of thread and notions.


On the far wall were more rows of fabrics.  About half of what you see here was devoted to flannel, and the back half of the wall was children's fabrics.


When I walked to the back of the store, I noticed a cut-out in the wall that allowed me to see a roomy and comfortable classroom in the back of the store.


There were some adorable quilts for sale hanging all around the store.  I liked these two table-runner size quilts.  I would say they were optimistically priced.


I love batiks and they had a wonderful selection.  I purchased two yard of each of these.  I really liked the colors and the butterflies in this one.


This one reminded me of peppermint candies, although it was not shelved with the Christmas prints.  I don't think it was intended as a holiday print, but it will work as one if I want it to.


Finally, this one with the buffalo.  I don't know if there are buffalo in Montana, but I'm calling this a regional print.  There must be a buffalo close by somewhere.  Mainly, I just liked the colors.


So, I really liked this quilt shop.  It is definitely worth your time if you are traveling to Glacier National Park or through Kalispell.  I rated it 4 out of 5 rotary cutters.


It would have received 5 rotary cutters had the fabric selection been more all-encompassing.  If you are a person who likes civil war prints, reproduction prints, or calicoes, you would have been disappointed with the selection of fabrics.  Otherwise, it was a great quilt shop, and I'm very glad I tagged along with Mike on his quest for plumbing supplies.


19 comments from clever and witty friends:

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

What a great shop!

WoolenSails said...

I have that app too, haven't been anywhere new to try it, but it will be nice when we go on trips and for free, it is well worth it.

Debbie

Denise :) said...

That app has cost me a pretty penny on more than one occasion, if you get my happy drift!! Fun little shop -- the batiks were pretty! :)

Snoodles said...

Almost I am tempted to get a smart phone....LOL What a great shop - love the "library" arrangement of the fabrics! Your sparkle picture below is so cool!

IHaveANotion ~ Kelly Jackson said...

I hear you with the I-Phone Apps...but you know what? At least we know a shop is somewhere in the area...as if our bodies didn't already know that! LOL

Love the photo of the farm. I've been to Kalispell and it is a lovely area.


Thanks for sharing....you're keeping me going here!

Smiles,
Kelly

Teresa Hays said...

I've been enjoying following your post of your trip!! It makes me miss MT so much!!! I've got a picture of that same farm in my collection of pictures of MT!!! We just moved from the Missoula area (for reasons beyond my control) to Arizona this past year & seeing all these pictures makes me miss MT. The Quilt Gallery was one of my favorite quilt shops in MT. Missoula has some good quilt shops too IF you get down that direction. Have a SAFE trip and thanks for sharing!!!

Judy1522 said...

If you like buffalo and have never been check out the Bison Range South of Flathead lake on Highway 93. It's a great place to drive through and see buffalo, deer, elk, bighorn sheep and other animals. We have been a couple of times and enjoyed it both times very much. They allow you to leave your trailer in the parking lot.

Rachel said...

Great shop review. LOVE that barn!

Maria said...

What a wonderful shop. If I ever set foot in there nothing would get me out. My kind of heaven.

Dana Gaffney said...

All the great apps go to iphones, I'm team Blackberry, but maybe I should have switched teams. I'd love to know if they actually sell those wall hangings for those prices, maybe we're living in the wrong part of the country.

craftingismybliss said...

Looks like a great shop. I love the buffalo print. Lots of buffalo in Wyoming, not too far from Montana. Enjoy your travels.

giddy99 said...

I think I went to Glacier Quilts when I was there this summer (in a strip mall area, very near 93). They had a LOT of fabrics (more so than one would think in that space), and we thought there was a large number of fleece and flannels, too. I guess because it's so much colder there.

ana-ane said...

Me encanta tu viaje, es como si viajara con vosotros y los gatitos,
estoy disfrutando con tus fotos y tus
crónicas.

Saludos

The Amateur Quilter (Mike Pearson) said...

I use that app too on my Android. It works for me. I will be in Butte, MT in October. I can't wait to test it out :) Thanks for sharing!

kc said...

You're SO gonna get me in trouble! Now I can spend money ANYwhere, and quicker!! thanks for the trip share - I love your fabrics too!!

Junebug613 said...

Ooooh! I could've spent hours in that shop! And lots of $$$$ too! You just added another reason to my list of wishing I had a smart phone! Dang you! LOL

desertskyquilts said...

To me, that red and white batik looked like umbrellas, and it's something I bought for a border on a quilt I'm making, too! =) Great quilt shop review.

quiltzyx said...

What a cool looking barn!
That's a neat app for your smart phone. I'm still using the old style, doesn't even have a camera...

NICE shop too. Holy cannolis on the prices of those small quilts!!! I wonder if they have ever sold any at that price? I do like the carrot one.

Kate said...

Love your fabric finds, especially the peppermint fabric.

I guess I need to upgrade my phone at some point, an app like you have would be very handy when traveling.