Wednesday, May 23, 2007

At the Printer

The newsletter is at the printer. It should be out in about a week, so start looking for it soon! We have a lot of excitement coming up, including our 4th Anniversary in June.

There is still time to do the block challenge before the deadline of June 2 at 5:30.

Here's what happens when you enter our challenge. Last year, we gave people this fabric to work with:
We had many wonderful blocks that came in! We have just finished a lap-quilt top made from some of them:

How beautiful is that? (We can't take any credit, so we'll go ahead and fuss over it!) We're going to donate it to the Quilt Guild's Hearts and Hands charity. Maybe it will become an auction quilt; maybe it will go to someone in need. Wherever it is wanted, it will go.

This year's fabric looks like this:

We bet you can do something pretty neat with it! So enter our challenge, and have a little piece of yourself go to a worthy place. (And have a chance of winning a $75 gift basket, while you're at it!)

Look for many fun events at our anniversary open house, coming up in June. We have lots of great classes this summer, and we're excited that you'll have the list of them in your hands soon!

Saturday, May 05, 2007

We're Working on It, We're Working on It!

Right now is one of three times a year when everyone starts asking when our newsletter will be ready. The answer is soon--it will be ready in about 2-3 weeks. Our classes will start in June, and we will try to mail the newsletter sometime during 3rd week of May.

Living in a college town means that everyone is geared toward three full semesters of classes. We love coming up with our classes! We are famous for them!

To schedule so many classes takes many teachers, and we have a full slate--about 15 of them altogether, plus ourselves. Most of them have been teaching with us since we started the shop. They all like to teach, and we work hard to schedule in all their great classes!

To begin, we start by asking what they want to teach and what their schedule is like. People's schedules can be complicated--balancing work, vacation, family time, and other commitments. Summer can be especially erratic--one teacher might be gone the month of June, another in August. We do our best to work with our teachers' schedules.

We schedule those with the most complicated schedules first and add in the rest as we go. We have other constraints that we have to work with; for example, we can only offer one quilting class and one knitting class a night. We also have to consider holidays, such as July 4th, and large community events, such as Arts Fest. We schedule ourselves last because we can squeeze in anywhere. We work hard to balance our schedule so no teacher feels overwhelmed and so that you have lots of great class choices.

Once we have finalized the schedule, we double-check the dates and classes with our teachers. This is a really important step because once we go to print it's more difficult to change schedules. Then we begin writing descriptions and collecting class lists. Both Cynthia and Kim were writers in previous lives, so this task isn't as onerous as it would seem. We have different writing styles but we are able to blend so we sound like one writer.

Once the draft is near final, we nearly go blind checking and double-checking all the dates and times to make sure what is being published matches our calendar. Regardless of how much we check, we have never been able to publish a newsletter without leaving in at least one mistake. (We think of it as our test to you!)

From here, we send it to the printer and celebrate. It's done for another semester.

We're getting mighty close to celebrating at this point--so start checking your mailbox sometime after the 3rd week in May!