Much to my shock, nay, horror, dance camp was not at a farm, as I had somehow been led to believe. It was in Farmington, which was about as close to "farming" as we got. No big deal. We were on a main thoroughfare (Broadway) in a very small town, in a two-story building, complete with a marquee announcing to all that "Dance Camp" was in session. Not quite what we expected, but cool nevertheless.
While Matt was teaching his class, which was the second class of the day and started at 9AM, I would either take photos of the class or wander about exploring the area. Luckily, I found a quilt shop called "Pins & Needles" and decided to check it out. I wasn't sure what to expect. All the quilting shops I have been to in the Cambridge area always leave something to be desired - what they have in selection, they lack in customer service, or what they lack in organization, they make up for in pricing. There is not one shop that I am 100% head over heels in love with. Hence, I do most of my shopping for fabric and notions online.
Well, I found a quilt shop that fulfills all my quilty/crafty needs. The unfortunate thing is that it is located in Farmington, Maine. Pins & Needles is like the PurlSoho of Maine. (The good news is that they have a website up now and will soon have it totally up and running for online sales.) I was floored by their gorgeous (and plentiful) selection. They have a stunning array of calicos and reproduction prints, all beautifully displayed and arranged by color, fat quarters lovingly arranged in an inspiring rainbow, as well as bundles of fat quarters, baskets full of 1/2 yard, 1/4 yard, and 1/8 cuts, and bundles of gorgeous felted wool in a fabulous selection of colors:
I am not sure if this felt is the same stuff that Purl carries now, but this is felt with some body to it, nice and thick, 100% wool, perfect for softies. In fact, I have already started one using the deep rose colored stuff:
Anyway, I was in heaven there. For the record, they also have some yummy-looking tweeds that I only really noticed on my last visit and didn't get a chance to ogle properly. The mind reels at the softie-making potential. And did I mention the yarn? Oh yeah, half the store was a fabric shop and the other half was yarn. They carried a fantastic selection of mainly natural fibers, nothing too fanschy-schmancy, but excellent stuff really. They had Cherry Tree solid sock yarn on sale! (I actually wish I had bought a skein of Mint, the loveliest and most lush shade of green, but alas, I did not because I am sticking to my guns about not buying any more sock yarn until the stash is half of what it is now.)
I had the extreme pleasure of meeting the owner of this wonderful shop, Cheri, who is super-nice and so friendly and enthusiastic. She gave me a little bit of history about the shop, how she's been quilting professionally and selling fabric out of her garage for about 18 years before they got that space. The shop has only been at that location for 6 months, yet everything looks perfect. The space itself is fantastic, not to mention what they've done with it.
If you're ever in Farmington, you MUST check out this gem of a shop. I guarantee you will love it!