While I'm up here in Canada I thought why not take advantage of it and go and check out the quilt shops here in Calgary. I was wondering how they differ from the shops both in Australia and the USA. Traveling both in Salt Lake City and here in Calgary I was wondering how did we cope without a GPS, I got lost several times but that GSP works so well it got me back on track.
My first shop that I visited was Along Came Quilting: Unit 12, 1220-59 Avenue S.E Calgary.Once again the outside of this shop is very plain but when you walk through the doors you are warmly welcomed and greeted with the fabric. They have a good selection of Batiks, novelties (I bought some hockey fabric), Japanese fabrics, Taupe fabrics and more. They have kits lining the walls of the shop and sample quilts. The staff were helpful. Sorry no photos of the inside of the shop (I forgot to ask)
Next shop on my list was the Sewing Room #148, 8228 Macleod Trail, S.E. Calgary.They state that this is the largest quilt store in Canada and yes they have a lot of fabric. However I have to say that after visiting this store it really did show me, yes you can have the most fabric, but it doesn't make you the best store. They did have a good selection across the board of fabrics but it is a bit overwhelming and I feel that I would have trouble trying to put fabric together for a quilt. They sell Bernina Sewing Machines (oh how we love Bernina!). They have many kits available with quilts lining the walls of the shop. With the selection of fabric which this store has, you would not have trouble finding what you want here. The staff member who served me was lovely and very friendly. I just so much wanted to like this store but it just didn't do it for me, I love quilt shops in old buildings, it gives character to a store unfortunately this shop was in a warehouse type building.
Next on my list was Out of Hand: 12-6449 Crowchild Trail SW Calgary
This shop from the front looked good, but walking through the doors, oh my. This shop is too small for the amount of fabric that it has. Trying to get up and down the small aisle is hard, do not bring children into this shop (or a pram) They have a good display of wool, both plain colours and marbled. The fabric is located in shelves but there is a lot of fabric in front of the bottom row which makes it hard to see it all. They do have alot of fabric, and also have dress making fabrics. There are patterns throughout the shop. I did buy some food ribbon here (they have a good selection of decorative ribbons) and something special for Jan (who loves Motorbikes).
My next shop on the list had to be my favourite shop. Traditional Pastimes: 7 Parkdale Cres. NW Calgary.
I did find it a bit hard to find this shop, you don't think that the street is really a street as there is parking located in it, when you drive in it is up the back right corner hand side. This shop is not only friendly but well set out to see all the fabric with several quilts on display throughout the shop. They have a good range of civil war fabric, I did see some William Morris there, Kaffe Fassett and Lecien Fabrics. I was fortunate to have a good chat to the owner and her daughter while in the shop and they showed me their classroom which is located downstairs (and large) with the longarm quilting machine they have (oh how I wish we had one in the shop!). This is a definite must see shop if you are in Calgary - the pick of the shops located there)
Last shop on the list was Freckles Quilt Shop: 13A - 728 Northmount Drive NW Calgary.
It is located in the shopping centre there, I drove past not knowing where it was. This shop was unfortunately a bit disappointing after visiting the last shop (which was so good!) The shop is large however with not a very big collection of fabric. They do have their own range of patterns which were cute, and these patterns are available as kits. They do have a nice window display but unfortunately this was the last shop on my list and I was excited to be heading up to Banff so I didn't stop too long.
Next stop Banff!