Quilt Shop: Parkland Parish Quilt Co.

Our trip to Tacoma, Washington, yesterday ended up putting a big dent in our bank account in more ways than one. A drive of that distance warrants checking for any local quilt shops (because who doesn't love a good quilt shop?). So I used my handy-dandy Quilt Shop app to find Parkland Parish Quilt Co. I knew as soon as we drove up that I was in for a treat.

The building itself is an old church, 110 years old. The quilt shop employee thought it might have been a Methodist church in its heyday. I'm guessing it was Lutheran, if only because of its proximity to Pacific Lutheran University. I've spent quite a bit of time on the internet this morning trying to find out more information about the building itself, but I've come up dry. If any of you have information about it, please do tell.

As you stand looking at the building, the "up" stairway leads to the front door. The "down" stairway to the left leads to a basement classroom. I would have loved to see the classroom, but with a class going on, I didn't think flash photography of perfect strangers would endear me to anyone. So I proceeded up the stairs and found this sign taped to the front door.

A nice gesture, given its close proximity to Joint Base Lewis McCord. Having grown up in a military family, I'm in favor of anything that makes life easier for military families.

As you enter the front door, there is a stairway off to the left that leads down to the classroom. It was so pretty all decorated in quilts.

There is a small foyer. I looked up the term for this small room when it is a part of a church and learned that historically, it is called a "narthex". Just think of it as your vocabulary lesson for the day. Use the word three times, and it's yours forever.

When you cross to the other side, you see the rest of the quilt shop.

There were some pretty banners hanging above the cutting counter. These appear to correspond to the months of the year. I don't know the story behind these...maybe they were a pattern series, or a class(?)...either way, they were pretty. Also, if you look at the image above, you'll see that beyond those banners, there was a row of colorful aprons hanging from the ceiling. They might show up in some of my other images. 

There were lots of pretty quilts hanging on the walls all around. I think one of the things that I find most appealing in a quilt shop is lots and lots of color. It always makes me feel as if I'm walking into the Land of Oz.

I especially liked this next one. Can you read the sign beneath it?

They had a good range of fabrics with something for everyone's taste. I suppose they might have been a little light on batiks, but there were some available. In the image below, you can see their reproduction and civil war type prints.

Also, they had a good supply of baby fabrics and flannels, as well as a good supply of landscape prints. Their holiday fabric was out along with some holiday patterns.

Here you can see a nice supply of bright prints. Check out that red and white stripe in the upper left corner. There's also a baby blue stripe just to the right of it.

And polka dots! I already removed some of the bolts before I took the picture below.

There was a good supply of precuts, fat quarters, kits, and patterns.

When you stood on the far side of the building, you could look across to the other side and see these pretty stained glass windows.

The church life of the building was easy to imagine. Here's another image of the stained glass. In the window on the left, that is a stained glass hanging replica of the building itself, and on the right, you can see the pretty fall leaves outside.

Stand in front of those windows looking back the other way, and this is what you see.

Now you can see the aprons hanging from the ceiling.

So, I found it difficult to stop taking pictures because the building itself charmed the socks right off of me. Nevertheless, I did pick up several things for my own use. I liked these fabrics below for using in my Vintage Tin quilt. The polka dot background is really an off white, although it looks white in this picture. I got two yards of the polka dots and one of the stripe. The stripe might make a good binding for that quilt.

Now you just knew I wasn't walking out with some of that red and white stripe, didn't you? The stripes are about an inch and a half wide. I ended up with two yards of that, although it was tempting to buy more. It's hard to find wide stripes like this unless they are printed on canvas. I can see lots of uses for this...in borders or in bindings...wouldn't that be so cute in the right quilt?

I tried not to buy any of this, but those cats just would not stop meowing my name. Just to shut them up, I got two yards of that as well.

Also, I think I've seen this pattern at a quilt show, but either way, I just thought it was too cute to pass up. Won't it be fun to embellish?

And then I ended up with this pattern from a designer who was new to me. I figured she must be local because they had so many of her patterns. She was. Here is a link to her website. I bought this embroidered quilt pattern of the "Quilter's Retweet". Too cute, especially for me of the birdcam.

Here's a closer picture of the resulting quilt and embroidery motifs.

And I have a small collection of these pins that I've picked up here and there. I so fell in love with this building that I wanted their pin for my collection.

So, I feel as if I hit the jackpot with this shop. It was such fun. It was a little tricky to find because it was on the main drag, and yet, set back from the street. We drove by it three times before we found it. Once we figured out where it was, we missed the one driveway that led into their parking lot. Once you're in the parking lot, there is plenty of room to park. The store itself was roomy and easy to navigate, and the service was good. Given the number of people I noticed in the classroom, I'm guessing this is a favorite shop for Tacoma quilters. We don't get up that way very often...in fact it's been years...but I would definitely stop in on a return visit. You should too if you find yourself in the area.

For their charming shop, good supply of fabric, patterns, kits, books, notions, their kind gesture to the military families that live in the area, and their excellent customer service and friendly (tolerant of photography) attitude, I give this shop my highest rating of five rotary cutters.

*Disclaimer:  Cat Patches accepts no advertising, nor any sponsorships.  The opinions expressed on this blog are based on the personal impressions and perceptions of the author. They are formed  on the basis of one short visit, on one day, and may or may not reflect the experience of others visiting on a different day.  They are no more descriptive than a single snapshot image can be, and nothing written in a review of a quilt shop should be construed as objective fact.  The reviews are strictly the author's subjective opinion and should not be interpreted as anything more.

17 comments from clever and witty friends:

Vroomans' Quilts said...

I just knew your would get the wide stripe - I would have gotten both the red and blue - and I have that kittie fabric somewhere. Great building.

BillieBee (billiemick) said...

Sure enjoyed the post. Especially the sign that only God is perfect....I can relax now and enjoy my messes...:)

WoolenSails said...

That is an amazing building for a store, love it.
I do love that quilt, quilt, fun design and work on it. Love your choices, the bird quilt is perfect.


gpc said...

What a fun shop! I love how it 'walks its talk' by displaying so many creative uses of fabric. That cat fabric --- I had that pattern in wrapping paper back in the '70s. Loved it then, love it now. :)

Karen - Quilts...etc. said...

sounds like a neat shop! I too have an ap on my phone for finding quilt shops when I travel - it comes in so handy!

Brown Family said...

Tha looks like a wonderful shop. I do not think we saw that one when we were there! WE did go to one in Puyallup.

Sharyn T said...

Fantastic shop Barbara. I live in Tacoma in Australia and wish we had a beautiful shop such as this one. Sharyn:)

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

Beautiful shop!! They have a nice selection of fat quarters too.

Dana Gaffney said...

I would have spent a fortune there, it's a really pretty shop. Nice score with that red and white stripe.

Michele said...

Oh what a perfect building for a shop and it looks like a place I could do some credit card damage in myself.

Diane Wild said...

A beautiful shop. Love the ambiance. I always thought going into a quilt shop was a spiritual experience. This shop proves my point.

Tami C said...

Thanks for the tour of such a beautiful quilt store! Those cute cats called out my name as well! Thanks for sharing!

Lynda Halliger Otvos (Lynda M O) said...

That store would get SIX out of five - for the stained glass window of... ItSelf !~! I love that. Why ? Not sure, but it just appeals to me on some level. Your app is so cool and so helpful to us when you do these superlative reviews and photos of the places too. You are a dang sight better than Yelp, and so much cuter too with your kittehs, and your quilts and your walks with Sue and those handsome men who crowd up your dinner table now and again. And the inimitable, nearly silent engineer husband who fixes everything and designs tools when he needs a special one.

You're my favorite blog in the whole innertubes.

LynCC said...

OK, that's it! I just *have* to go out somehow and visit this shop!!

LynCC said...

OK, that's it! I just *have* to go out somehow and visit this shop!!

Junebug613 said...

I enjoyed everything about this post! Congrats on your new traveling home! That shop sure seems to have everything I would love, including its charisma! Thanks for all the lovely details! That sign is wonderful. We all need a reminder now and then, or we'll drive ourselves crazy in our pursuit of perfection!

Kate said...

What a beautiful building for a quilt shop. Love your new goodies, that cat fabric is really fun!