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Sweet Stitches Quilt Shop April 2021 Newsletter


SSQS Journal

Issue 44  April 2021 

April 2021

Hello Everyone and Welcome April!

We hope everyone is doing well and enjoying the Spring season so far. It's been a busy month again in the shop, with new folks coming in and more of you starting to come back in after being away for the past year. It's been good to see so many friends that have been with us since the beginning and catch up on what you have been quilting and creating while staying safe at home. It's always good to talk quilting with friends who have been quilting for a long time, like myself, to hear how they are keeping up with what's new in the quilting seen and what they are learning. Because, no matter how long you have been quilting there is always a new technique to learn or the latest style to dive into. As much as I love talking quilting with old friends, I have come to appreciate working with new Quilter's both as a shop owner and as the Beginning Quilting teacher at the shop. I get the unique experience of helping new Quilter's find the joy in making and creating with fabric. It's fun to see them get excited as their skills grow and watching their quilt style develop. When I watch their struggles to develop quilting techniques it helps me to remember those days, we all have had them (some days we still do to be honest) and it makes me appreciate the skills I have learned over the years. It really renews my love of Quilting working with new Quilter's. I remember where I started and am hopeful for where I'm going on the quilt journey and that there is always room to grow and new friendships to be made. 

Room to Bloom is my theme for the month in more ways than one and we are so glad to have you all to share it with.

May all your Stitches be Sweet,


April 1, 2021 | CHESTERTON, IN. - It may be April Fools Day but this is no joke - Sweet Stitches Quilt Shop will be Moving.

Sweet Stitches, now in its 5th year at its current location, announces that we will move to a new building. The new location is not far, in fact, it is right next door! Sweet Stitches will move its business and retail operations into the former Summers Heating and Cooling building that is immediately north of the current location. "We are excited to have the opportunity to expand our shop." said Joan Crookston, owner, "Our new layout will provide our customers additional space and allow our shop to offer new product lines and services."

The new location will provide additional floor space for retail with new displays, room for multiple cutting tables, a separate wing for classroom training, a dedicated parking lot, a receiving dock, as well as expanded storage and machine repair areas that will be on one level. 

"The building is in great shape but it will take a little work to bring it to an acceptable retail level." said Rob Crookston, co-owner, "We are looking at August or September to make the move."

Sweet Stitches promises to keep customers up to date on the developments, buildout and eventual relocation through this newsletter, the business website, and its Facebook page.

Sweet Stitches on TV

Several months ago, Joan was interviewed by Lakeshore PBS Producer Alex Hernandez for a piece he produced for the series "Eye on the Arts." Joan's interview will air on Lakeshore PBS | Wednesday, Apr. 7 at 07:00 pm. Lakeshore PBS provided an early release to their Facebook page which you can view by clicking here.

Congratulations to Joan for a great interview and insight into her passion for quilting and her passion to share quilting with others. Thanks also to Alex for his wonderful work to create a piece that perfectly captures what Sweet Stitches is all about!

Eye on the Arts and Joan's interview will air on Lakeshore PBS | Wednesday, Apr. 7 at 07:00 pm and you can click here to watch the interview on Facebook.

Friday, April 2, 2021

Our First Friday of the Month Demonstration Day theme for April will be "Room to Bloom". It's Spring and the flowers are budding and blooming everywhere - even on our quilts! We have beautiful blooms to share with you on quilts, wall hangings, table runners, bags and pillows. There is always "Room to Bloom" and grow your quilting creativity at Sweet Stitches, Come join Us!

Friday Demo Days are a little different now but we don't want you to miss out on what's new in the shop so we produce a monthly video so you can watch at home. Be sure to stop by the shop to see the projects in person and pick up items to make your own projects.

A link to the Demo Day Video will be provided by email on the morning of Friday April 2nd.

Our owner's group Go! Play Days! continue in 2021!

The April Go! Play Day! theme is "April Baby Showers" and will feature a sweet baby quilt pattern. The simple pattern is versatile and with ease can be modified to be used in many different ways.

AccuQuilt Go! Play Day! Videos are sent out to those in our AccuQuilt Owners Club. Fabric Kits and AccuQuilt dies will be available for order, at the shop, after the video is released.

Here are the projects that our Accuquilt owners had access to so far this year:



Sweet Stitches offers a variety of classroom instruction for beginners through advanced students. We continue to add new project classes to the calendar along with many of our favorites. If you are interested to explore our classes, click the link below that will take you to our calendar or you can find the calendar and a list of classes on our website by clicking Classes in the top banner.

Please note that for the foreseeable future our Covid rules will remain in place so we all stay safe. We will have a maximum number of Three people in our classes and masks will be required for class participants and instructors. 

Click Here for the April Class Calendar

Progressive 5 Month Block of the Month
Coffee House

The second block sets are now available for those that have signed up for the Coffee House Block of the Month. Joan has created a new video with explanations, tips and tricks to complete this months block. If you are signed up for the BOM and did not receive your video link, please let us know. 

Future blocks will be available on the fourth Friday of each month along with an email and a tutorial video from Joan to help guide your progress.

Joan's Coffee House Quilt Top:

A Machine Minute

General Maintenance and proper technique are critical for optimum performance of your sewing machine and project outcome.

Its a weighty subject...

Over the next few months we are talking about thread. This month, thread weight. Thread can be described using a number of measuring systems such as Weight, Denier, and Tex. While not identical measurements, these values are mathematically related. For purposes of this discussion we will talk weight. 

You know thread weight as the number value assigned to your thread that provides information as to how heavy or thick the thread is. We often piece and quilt with 50wt (#50) thread. Typical Embroidery thread is #40 and threads of #60 and #80 are readily available as are #30 and #12.

Did you know that the weight of the thread really is a weight? Well actually it is the length (distance) of thread that is necessary to have sufficient thread to weigh exactly one kilogram (2.2 Pounds). A #50 thread would require a length of thread that is 50 kilometers (31.07 Miles) to weigh one kilogram. An #80 thread would require 80 kilometers (49.71 Miles) of thread to weigh that same one kilogram. Give it some thought, it does make sense that you would need a longer piece of a thinner thread to weigh as much as a thicker thread. This explains why thread numbers increase as the thread gets smaller.

Unfortunately, there is more to this story. You may have noticed that not all #50 threads feel the same, and you are correct, they are not all the same. In order to understand why, we need to discuss material of construction, pile and subjects such as tensile strength. These topics, however, deserve their own Machine Minute so stay tuned until next month.

COVID-19 Update

Please note that Sweet Stitches Quilt Shop will continue to require the use of masks by employees, instructors and visitors while inside the shop.

This requirement will extend beyond the anticipated change to the State of Indiana mask policy slated to be updated April 6th.
While we are pleased to see the growing number of vaccinated persons, not everyone has had that opportunity. Until we have a greater number fully vaccinated, we will require masks inside our store to enhance safety for everyone.  Thank you

Quilters of all skill levels can find encouragement, inspiration and creativity at Sweet Stitches Quilt Shop. Located in Chesterton, Indiana just a few miles from the natural beauty of the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, Sweet Stitches Quilt Shop is your destination for fabrics, notions and all things quilting. We carry a wide variety of brights and batik fabrics as well as notions, patterns, books and Elna/Janome sewing machines. Our large classroom offers students everything they need to learn and grow their quilting talents. From fabric selection to project advice to training on your new machine, our friendly, knowledgeable staff is ready to assist. Stop by the store or click the "Shop Online" link to view our wide variety of products ready to ship direct to your door.

1585 South Calumet Road  Chesterton, IN 46304

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