> ~ Insights by SewCalGal ~

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Do You Know Any Quilters That Like To Travel?

Do you ever dream about visiting places that you read about in a book? When you travel, do you enjoy visiting quilt or other needleart shops ?  Do you know others that travel and like to visit such shops, or someone that is moving to a new area?  Or, do you know of a quilt or needlearts business that could use some great PR awareness?  If you answered yes, to one or more of these questions, I hope you'll enjoy the insights I want to share with you today.      

Fiber & Fabric Mania! A Travel Guide, by Needle Travel, is a great 2012 guide that shares insights on all speciality needlearts shops (quilting, knitting, needlepoint, crocheting, weaving, spinning and cross-stitch/embroidery)  in the United States. And, this issue has well over 3,000 businesses included in their 2012 issue!  Plus, these businesses are also available online at NeedleTravel.com.  Truly an excellent resource for travelers, those moving to new communities, as well as for PR opportunities for businesses! 

The mission of Needle Travel is to "help people find fiber & fabric-related specialty shops when they travel".   

I had fun reading this travel guide and thinking about various travel opportunities and potential quilt shops I could visit.  Of course, it can influence how one may want to plan future trips (after all, isn't it fun to visit a "new" shop with treasures for our sewing room and to find things that can help with our future projects?).

Sample pages:
The maps in this guide are also very helpful. 

I started planning out quilt shops that I could visit, when I attend a workshop in Northern California with Cindy Needham this Fall.  Looks like I definitely need to visit Sew What Quilts in Redding, Ca.. along with many quilt shops in the area, when I make this trip. 

I'm dreaming of a roadtrip to Yellowstone National Park and, of course, want to be able to visit quilt shops in the area and along the way.  I was delighted to use their online store lookup to help plot out stores in the area, as well as use their book to help plan this future trip. 

I also love traveling to Hawaii and was delighted to find Quilt Passions, in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii referenced.

Yeap, I'm definitely packing Fiber & Fabric Mania! A Travel Guide with me on ALL of my  future trips in the United  States.  And, I think you'll have fun traveling with a copy of this book too! 

While there are over 5,000 shops listed in this publication and available via NeedleTravel.com , I also wanted to understand how shops that are not included can get included.   This fits into the topic of "Sew Biz", which is how I categorize articles that may have helpful insights to those "in the business". And, is an opportunity that I hope ALL quilt shop owners take advantage of.  With your help to spread the word, lets try to get more quilt shop owners connected with this publication, so that they can be included, as well as more quilt shops carrying this book, so more quilters can be aware and take advantage of how helpful it can be.

In my investigation, I did learn that the publishing team uses several methods to add shops where they:
  1. Attend Quilt Market twice a year,
  2. Ask Guilds to tell them about stores in their area that are not in their book or listed online at NeedleTravel.com .
  3. Ask Quilters you have registered at NeedleTravel.com to report missing shops.
  4. Search the internet using several techniques which we regard as proprietary.

They also annually go thru a process to verify that all of these businesses are still in business, before they publish their next issue!  This helps to minimize the potential situation where you use their information to visit a shop that is no longer in business.

 For 2012, there were 6,000 copies printed.  It is free for shops to be included in this publication, but as publishers do need to make money, they do appreciate advertisers that pay a nominal fee for such advertisements.  Shops that sell this book also get their website included, for free, but a business could also pay a nominal advertisement fee to have their website included.  To clarify, basic business name, address & phone info is free to include in this annual publication.

For 2013, as well as with future years, this publisher is committed to adding more stores and continue to publish a quality issue  of "Fiber & Fabric Mania! A Travel Guide" that will continue to "help people find fiber & fabric-related specialty shops when they travel".

Overall, I am very impressed with the content and quality that I found in this book, as well as online.  But, most importantly, is the commitment by this publisher to include all speciality needlearts shops (quilting, knitting, needlepoint, crocheting, weaving, spinning and cross-stitch/embroidery) in the United States in future issues for free.  At the same time, I found their advertisement fees to be very reasonable and would encourage speciality needlearts shops to place an advertisement, for greater visibility. And, I definitely want to encourage ALL needlearts shops to offer this book for sale in their shops, as well as quilters and others interested in various needlearts, to check out this book and to consider it for any travel opportunity in the US, as well as for gift opportunities.  I'm already planning on sending a copy to a quilting friend that is moving to a new area, as a gift.

You can purchase a copy at your local quilt shop, or online at: 
And, you can contact Needle Travel at:
Michele Merin, Publisher

Ok, I'm curious to hear where you'd like to travel to in the US and how you learn about quilt shops and other needlearts shops that may be in the area that you are traveling to?


Bianca said...

That's the kind of referencebook I have been surching for!!
I will be traveling to the USA in a few months for a 4 week vacation and will travel through Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee!! Online I could find some shops, but this would be even better!
But.... I'll bet they don't ship to Europe, do they??

This will be our third time vacationing in the USA and I think we will for the rest of our lifes. We both fell in love with it! First we did the Route 66 and Highway 1 (found 1 quiltshop) two years later we did the southwest and found 2 quiltshops... This time I found 3 shops on our route, but the last weekend in de US I will go to a Quilt Show in Atlanta!! That tops every shop, doesn't it?! Maybe I can score that book there?? Would be great for our next trip.

Barb said...

What a wonderful resource at your finger tips...I sure could have used that in my travels....

Anonymous said...

I really like the fact that they verify the shop continues to exist before publishing an edition. Have used some of these only to find that the business has been gone for several years!!! Lots of great info in this post.....many thanks....hugs, Doreen

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

the title of your post caught my attention. When I travel it is not with quilt shops in mind but I am always looking for them when I get to my destinations to see what is in the area. Most of the time I just do a search on line and/or look in the yellow pages for "quilt shops". The Yellowstone WY area has a quilt shop in Jackson WY (70 or so miles to the south of the park) but I am not sure of any others.
There is another book out that has listings of quilt shops but it is not always up to date and I have never gotten it. I think it comes out every two years. Like I say I do not plan my traveling around quilt shops but look when I stop at places.

Happy Cottage Quilter said...

Wow what a great resource. I do check the internet when I know we will be traveling to an area. We have come across shops that have closed, and there is no indication of that on websites. Maybe they are just an online shop now, but it would be nice to have current up to date information. It's good that these publishers are staying on top of this information and reprinting a yearly issue.

Barbara said...

There is a great Quilt Shops app that locates where you are and tells you where nearby quilt shops are. I've used the Traveling Quilter directory too, but with print directories, it's always wise to call ahead. Many of the shops were out of business.

wackywoman said...

I will be interested in a new travelling quilt book. Did you say Amazon has it? I'll check.

Sandi said...

Great timing, I'm leaving to drive down to San Diego from the Vancouver B.C. area.

I've done this several times and have a few regular shops I go to each time and several resources I'll suggest to you.

The Country Register is a great source for Quilt Shops, Antique Stores and Fibre related shops. When you go into one of the shops ask if they are having or have just had a shop hop and do they have any of their passport/maps available.

Collect business cards for a personal file to review when you go on your next trip. I also do a travel diary to reference.

Ask the shop you are in if they can recommend any other shops in the area or a source for a particular item you are looking for.

Check the yellow pages of local telephone books when you are in your hotel for the evening...hey I found one quilt shop while in a liquor store in Ritzville Washington.

Antique shops are another source to ask about quilt shops. Check online to see if the shops are still open and for direction.

Quilt shops are also a great source for finding some local dining recommentations that you might not otherwise find.

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The Quilted Dog said...

When I travel I always love to seek out new quilt stores -- it gives me such a feel for the place I'm visiting. I usually check the local quilt guilds for recommendations. My all time favorite has to be the Log Cabin Quilt Shop in Bixby, OK. I was in Tulsa for an agility (dog) competition and my mother and I drove out to this wonderful shop. It is a beautiful log cabin in the woods filled with wonderful fabrics, patterns and of course, quilts! We had a lovely visit and they even invited my dog inside to visit as well.

Sewgirl said...

I will second what Sandy said about the local yellow pages. I have used books like this in the past which is great, but the yellow pages often helps you confirm even more accurately if the shop is still in businss. I love, checking out new shops where ever I travel and it's great to have a reference such as this.