Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Trip update #1: Getting there

Pin It I had this grand idea pre-trip that the drive to New Orleans was going to be filled with fun and laughter and stops at every quilt shop off the interstate on the way there.  While there was plenty of fun and laughter, there was only one quilt shop stop.  As it turns out, a lot of shops that still advertise online?  Yeah.  They're closed down.


It's important for me to mention that usually when I go into a quilt shop where no one knows me I get treated similar to the way V was treated on Rodeo Drive.  You know, before she met the rich dude and got the fancy makeover. Nobody offers to help me even when I'm obviously looking for something, although there can be three employees of the shop standing right there doing nothing.  Usually, they just pretend I'm not there.  I'm sooooo not even exaggerating.  But anyway.


 I did manage to find a quilt shop to stop at in Antlers, Oklahoma.  I suppose I shouldn't say "in" Antlers, as it was waaaaay off the beaten path in backwoods.  I'm talking Deliverance.  I was almost afraid.  You drive down a long dirt road, surrounded by woods and dilapidated trailor homes and suddenly you notice the trees with little yellow signs nailed to them with arrows pointing ahead.  This is the sign to Betsy's Quilt Shop.  I had to call her to get directions because my GPS was literally taking me in circles which ended up costing a total of $9.00 in tolls.  That's how backwoods this place is.




When you walk into Betsy's, you really have no idea what you're looking at.  Everything is everywhere, but in a very orderly fashion - if that makes any sense.  There are fat quarters neatly arranged right in front of the front door, there is a wall of yarn beyond that, then some trims and notions.  Down a few steps is all of the fabric.  Tons of fabric.  Over 5,000 bolts of fabric!  You have to dig around and look down every row through every bolt but I can guarantee you that ANYONE would find something they like at Betsy's.  She carries everything from camo (you know, the real kind) to Kaffe!  She has a lot of really old fabrics.  Like, really old.  But she has a lot of really nice and new fabrics too.  






The prices of those fabrics?  They ranged anywhere from $3-10/yard.  And it was kind of backwards.  All of her popular designer fabric was on the lower end.  I got a TON of yardage of the few pieces that I chose.  I have no idea what I'll do with them, but I had to buy a lot.  I will likely never go back there!  I also got a Quilter's Fabric Calculator for liiiiiiike, $25!!!  They retail for around $80 but Betsy was closing hers out for some silly reason.  They're fabulous.  I already have one but with how things get lost - at that price - I had to get another.  I got some new needles to try out boutis trapunto. Then I made my way over to the barn which houses two very old Gammills (one Optimum with no stitch regulator and one Optimum Plus with regulator, they were proud to say), backing fabrics and Minkees, some specialty fabrics and random things here and there.  


 I ended up finding some furry fabric that I liked, in super soft colors.  I have no idea what I'll do with that, either.  I bought a few yards each of three colors.  One of the other customers in the barn asked me where I was going to school!  She didn't believe me when I told her that I'm nearly 31.  That made my day!  I don't know if I really look young, or if it was that I started jumping up and down and clapping my hands once my fabric was cut.  Don't care.  It made my day! Then back inside to pay the bill for all of my treasures.  



Except once I paid my bill and started walking out the door, I saw several baskets of bright colors and my heart raced.  Organza.  Pre-cut, 25 yard spools of organza.  I have never seen organza on a roll before.  I guess I haven't lived enough!


So my opinion of Betsy's?  Well.  The entire staff was super nice.  They were as helpful as they could be, asked a lot of questions and seemed genuinely interested in their customers.  You're a little taken aback walking into the place (if you even make it to the front door without turning around) but I can guarantee  you that you'll have a good time.  Everything that I bought (seriously, that is a ton of yardage) came up to just a little over $150.  


Betsy herself came out to talk as I was paying for my purchases, and even graciously agreed to have her picture taken.




Needless to say, if you're ever anywhere near Antlers, Oklahoma, I highly suggest stopping by Betsy's.  Of course call ahead to get directions (go all the way through town and once you come to a fork in the road stay to the right.  After three more miles, turn left and 1/4 mile down the road Betsy's is on the right - see?  Why do I remember THAT but not what day it is? =]) and plan to lose at least an hour in the place.  I believe I was there for two.


And she will even ship you anything that you want!  At that seriously discounted price!  If only she had a website...  though I'm not sure they'd get internet out there.  :O)


More trip stuff soon!

8 comments:

  1. Great review. I've been treated the same way in quilt shops (the ignored part) especially when I was younger. On the flipside, I've worked in quilt shops and I went out of my way to speak to anyone who came in the door, especially the younger gals and the males--you can't judge a book (or a quilter) by it's cover.

    I wonder, did they have the designer fabric priced low because it just doesn't sell well there? (i.e., she tried, but had to discount it?!?)

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  2. I enjoyed reading this post as I understand fully the disapointment of not finding shops you thought sure would be there, did that same thing traveling to Lancaster PA... I thouht I'd come back with a car load of fabric but I didn't and lots of the antique stores weren't open either. I think it was the wrong time of the year or something. I am like you, if its there I will find the dang thing. Nice shop. Hope to read more of your travel posts.
    Blessings!

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  3. OMG, not only are you crazy, but you are funny! Too funny! Loved this post. Antlers looks like a great place to visit! I am sure that most of the places you went into took one look at your hair and mistakenly thought that you were not a quilter. I dislike stereotypes, particularly when they are reverse, don't you? I have often thought that when I grow up and have all the time in the world, that I would like to open a "shop" where everyone is greeted when they walk in, as if they were really welcome! Novel idea, huh?

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  4. Hi Lisa, Thank you so much for going off the beaten path to visit our shop. It was so great meeting you and I hope one day to send you a quilt for quilting. Love you hair, you fit right in with this shop! Have a safe trip home!!

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  5. Yep, I understand about getting the cold shoulder. I'm young, too, and even though I don't have awesome pink hair, sales people often look at me as if I'm just there to help my elderly quilter grandmother do her shopping without breaking a hip! Thankfully I've made myself well-known at my favorite local shops. I'm glad you found a great shop with fabulous sales staff!

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  6. The out of the way places are usually the best ones to find.

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  7. I have a weekend home just north of antlers and happened in the shop last week. The staff was so kind and readily helped me with my fabric choices. I bought fabric, rulers and yarn. The yarn was to die for as well as the fabric. yes it is overwhelming but ask anyone in the shop and they will go straight to what you want. They KNOW where everything is located. they have a clearance corner and a bin of "fill your bag". lots to look at and great prices. I bought a bag full of material and yarn and only spent $45. the moda fabrics that are usually $10 a yard were only $4. great buys and worth the trip if you are in south east oklahoma or north east texas! I will return next time I am at our vacation home! OHHH and the drive north of antlers is beautiful mountains and pine trees!

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  8. I have a weekend home just north of antlers and happened in the shop last week. The staff was so kind and readily helped me with my fabric choices. I bought fabric, rulers and yarn. The yarn was to die for as well as the fabric. yes it is overwhelming but ask anyone in the shop and they will go straight to what you want. They KNOW where everything is located. they have a clearance corner and a bin of "fill your bag". lots to look at and great prices. I bought a bag full of material and yarn and only spent $45. the moda fabrics that are usually $10 a yard were only $4. great buys and worth the trip if you are in south east oklahoma or north east texas! I will return next time I am at our vacation home! OHHH and the drive north of antlers is beautiful mountains and pine trees!

    ReplyDelete